Breaking Story - Macbook Versus Pro Nvidia Chips

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by tubbymac, Dec 9, 2008.

  1. tubbymac macrumors 65816


    Nov 6, 2008
    An investigative news article was posted just today concerning the NVidia 9400M and 9600M chips in the new Macbook and Macbook Pro:

    The short summary is that Macbook owners with the 9400M chip are pretty safe from a particular hardware fault that Nvidia had on their previous notebook graphic chips.

    However, after taking apart the 9600M from a Macbook Pro Aluminum and analyzing it with an electron microscope, it has the same problem the faulty chips from Nvidia had before. Looks like Nvidia might have to be sued again to get them to stop lying to their partners, investors, etc.

    I'd be quite wary of purchasing a Pro until this issue gets resolved. Looks like a problem that can't easily be fixed without replacing the board. Thank goodness the Macbook doesn't have the same problem.

    EDIT: According to mosx Nvidia wasn't actually fined in the courts. The original inquirer article used the words "Nvidia took a $200 million charge" which I read wrong as a court charge.
  2. shady825 macrumors 68000


    Oct 8, 2008
    Area 51
    OH MY GOD!! I'll be able to sleep tonight now! Thank you. :D
  3. mosx macrumors 65816

    Mar 3, 2007
    nvidia was never fined for what happened before. They announced the problem and set aside a large amount of cash to take care of repair costs.

    Also, most of what the inquirer says about nvidia products is a load of crap.

    nvidia snubbed the inquirer a few years ago. They wanted some free products to review and nvidia said no. That made the people who run the site mad and ever since then they will publish ANY negative story about nvidia regardless of how truthful it is.

    They completely blew the GeForce 8 series problem out of proportion and now they're just trying to stir up trouble.
  4. NC MacGuy macrumors 603

    NC MacGuy

    Feb 9, 2005
    The good side of the grass.
    Exactly! Just keep using them, if they break take 'em in. I rather like my flawed nvidia compared to the unflawed intel crap thank you. They always bash nvidia as mosx posted.
  5. hogfaninga macrumors 65816


    Aug 16, 2008
    Chestnut Tree Cafe
    If the story is BS can't nvidia sue for libel? I'm not a lawyer, but I'm sure they could sue if it is untrue.
  6. California macrumors 68040


    Aug 21, 2004
    Actually I will sleep better. Didn't know if I should take my 2.4 mb in for an upgrade to the pro or not. Now, NOT.
  7. Vulcan macrumors 65816


    Jul 17, 2008
    Pittsburgh, PA
    You know, the chance of the chip failing is probably under 5% if it is flawed, which is unlikely.

    I'll sleep the same.
  8. hogfaninga macrumors 65816


    Aug 16, 2008
    Chestnut Tree Cafe
    I wouldn't put too much stock in what those people say precisely for the reasons the above posters said. It is probably sour grapes.
  9. SnowLeopard2008 macrumors 604


    Jul 4, 2008
    Silicon Valley
    Hey... maybe that particular unit was a defect case? Stop worrying about what you have, its not what you have, its how you use it.
  10. Piaget macrumors member

    Oct 30, 2008
    I agree with the skepticism of the source expressed by everyone above. The Inquirer tends to write sensationalized pieces and after the MBP classic article got so much buzz, it's not surprising that they might want to write this to get more attention.

    But, if some unbiased, reputable source were to replicate these findings, then the Inquirer definitely have a strong case. Nvidia themselves reported that the faulty 8 series chips were caused by weak solders composed of 95% Pb and 5% Sn. This is the exact material composition that The Inquirer claims the 9600 (but not the 9400) chips are made of. I'm by no means an expert (I took a few thermochemistry courses in uni, but not beyond that), but this would seem like rather convincing evidence.

    This may also explain the black screens (see here and here) that some MBP owners have experienced after gaming using the 9600, but not when using the 9400.
  11. qsoundrich macrumors member

    Dec 23, 2007
    These guys have an ad for AMD at the bottom of their page. I'm not sure how much stock I'd put in what they have to say.

    That being said, I'm def leaning towards the new macbook over the old pro because of the proven solder problems on the 8600.
  12. tubbymac thread starter macrumors 65816


    Nov 6, 2008
    Hmm, I just clicked the link a few times and got nothing but Intel, Corizon, and Newegg and Tigerdirect ads trying to sell Intel Core 2 Duos. No AMD ad in sight, but what you and I observed doesn't say anything about EITHER an Intel or an AMD bias.

    This is a bit of a diversion but let me quickly explain. Look at the top of MacRumors and notice the ad. Right now for me it's a Nintendo Wii Zapper ad. For you it'll be something different. Does that mean that Macrumors is Nintendo biased? Nope. Look at the full url of the ad. Somewhere inside the url will be a link to the google ads service. Both MacRumors and the Inquirer, and a million other sites use google ads, and google picks the ads.

    As to the Inquirer getting snubbed by Nvidia and that this could be a biased backlash of some sort by the author of the article, I guess that's uhm, good to know. I really can't think of another way to put it since one of the first things you learn in any logic class is to concentrate on the argument presented and not on the person presenting the argument. So whether the guy hates Nvidia, whether he's an Apple fanboy, a Dell/PC/AMD fanboy, or writes all his articles in his underwear upside down, it's not that important. The material analysis and the electronic microscope results are what matters. Sure, if you personally dislike the guy you could probably argue he's lying, but it seems a stretch. The simpler explanation is the experimental results are true, but the real question is do the results mean anything or if they are statistically significant (he could have just gotten a bad batch, etc). What's more, the results are painfully hard for most sites to reproduce since they involve access to an electron microscope and chemical analysis equipment.
  13. Jiten macrumors 6502a


    Jul 16, 2008
    I have the same sentiments here regarding the INQ article - despite of their rep they presented quite a substantial study. If the MBP chips are indeed are defective then we will surely find out soon within a year or so.
  14. Gordy macrumors 6502a

    May 22, 2005
    Bristol, UK
    To be fair the Inq they said the original nVidia bump issues were happening long before nVidia, apple and everyone admitted it. I suspect they are correct on the macbook pro's too.

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