G4 horror story. Anyone want to share a horror story? Advice? Please?

Discussion in 'General Mac Discussion' started by JoeG4, Jan 16, 2003.

  1. JoeG4 macrumors 68030


    Jan 11, 2002
    Bay Area, Ca.
    I'm still only getting slightly closer by the day to this self imposed edge of mine, the edge is tommorow, but anyway, I will let myself loose and start by asking this question:

    Who has had a problem with apple quality? I mean having an ibook with a bad paintjob or something that cracked, etc. Let's talk about this, as I mean I think apple has a SERIOUS quality problem here.

    Things that come to mind are the imac crooked screens, improperly mounted LCDs, cracked computers, tons of cosmetic problems, noisy g4s, etc. Think about it. Does your pro keyboard have sharp edges? Have you had your pro mouse replaced because the cable went bad? Speak up! What did apple do about it? Are you still trying to get a problem solved? Are any of your friends suffering?

    I bring this forward because I've been having a tremendous problem with my apple hardware, this including a dual 800 g4, a cinema display, pro speakers, and whatnot. From pretty much day 1 I've had problems, the first time I started OS X it went corrupt, etc.

    There are 3 most notable problems: I've had several keyboards replaced because they had bad plastic, stopped working, or other problems, and several mice replaced. While I still have a set of pro keyboards that work, all of my mice (including the one I currently use) have problems. That includes every replacement (duh).

    So anyway, let me describe the Quality "oops"es that I've experienced:

    The cinema display, a replacement to my original one, has these huge faded regions on the sides, and about 10-20 dead pixels, 5 are very obvious.

    The G4, I received with the front handle/right side screw stripped. There was a scratch on the handle, when I went on to inspect, as the weeks went by, cracks started appearing around several other screwholes on the side panels. WTF? I called apple angry about this, they said it was "customer abuse", finally they give me some info, I take it to a service center, and they replaced everything but the plastic. grrr.

    The original HDD was defective, it grinded against the top of it's casing. The new one, while better, makes this annoying vibrating like sound when it seeks.

    The superdrive, came with a beige tray, though machines that were older than mine had black trays. An instant turnoff. I didn't really care about it though, until I noticed itunes only rips CDs at 4x and I've had a number of coasters.

    The fans... Grr. This is another annoying one, one day the fans started going full blast, and they've pretty much been the same ever since. Even with thorough cleaning. The machine sounds even noisier than some of those new G4s.

    I could go on and on, like the pro speakers that I bought for the G4 no longer work, and at one point the machine would seriously mess up when I plugged it in.

    So I ask apple for a replacement, what do they do? Some jerk decides to tell me this wasn't grounds for replacement. What is grounds for replacement? Do I have to take a sledge to my machine to make it replacable?

    Oh yeah, there's one more. After 3 days of uptime (I run this thing as a webserver for my mud and such), CRASH! It used to be a kernel panic, but lately after numerous reinstalls of the os, etc, it just locks up.

    So I've tried pretty much everything. One point I emailed sjobs@apple.com, and got a reply some time later (by phone) from some guy at executive relations who said I would, in no way, get a replacement g4. Not even the display! Why can't I have a computer that works right?

    So I've been trying at this for over a year now, and am getting fedup, my mom's angry about it, I'm angry because sometimes my computer doesn't work right, a certain guy in executive relations is getting angry and when I spoke with someone at customer relations, with my friend (a sorta free-time employer of mine), he called my friend, and left a message on his voicemail talking about how he had absolutely no right (since he wasn't the owner) to be discussing my computer!

    This jerk finally, after I try some more, decides to set things so I can only talk to him regarding my computers! And tells me no matter what I do "apple" has made their decision.

    Short of hiring a lawyer, everything to date has failed. I'm working on getting around it, but meh.

    So anyone want to talk about their apple horror stories?
  2. Macette macrumors 6502

    Mar 5, 2002
    I understand your frustration, tho haven't had those kinds of major probs myself...

    But I HATE the way my iBook hinge squeaks (really scarily) evry time I open it. Apple told me it would get better, but it's only got worse... and I know people who are not going to buy iBooks ever again because of it.

    Also, I just sent my iPod back to Apple because the buttons have stopped working. Despite it being the most-loved, best-treated iPod on earth (possibly).

    Good luck with Apple... I think their industrial design is fabulous, it's just not, ahem, industrial strength.
  3. Steradian macrumors 6502

    Dec 3, 2002
    San Jose

    In my experiance and my parent's experiance, who have been with apple since the ][e we have never had a problem, not once. I have had heard things from friends but they are minor problems or things that can be ignored.
  4. springscansing macrumors 6502a


    Oct 13, 2002
    New York
    Hm... had macs since i was in the womb and never had a single problem. Very odd your experience I think. I never even heard of half those problems.
  5. gbojim macrumors 6502

    Jan 30, 2002
    I started using Macs in '87. I have 3 - a II CI from '87, a B&W G3 from I think '99 and a PB from 2002. All are in daily use.

    The HDD in the CI died in '96 and had to be replaced. That's it. So I kinda like the quality.
  6. bondipete macrumors member

    Jan 16, 2003
    Melbourne, Australia
    I feel your pain

    I have a G3 iBook, 366. A Clamshell. When I got it, the keyboard wasn't properly flush in the top right hand corner. It banged down on the casing any time I hit a key on the right hand side of the keyboard. And it sounded dreadful.
    I took it back:
    "Sorry, you'll have to send that to Apple in Sydney"
    I sent it to Apple.
    It came back "fixed". Same problem.
    I took it in to the shop again. They said send it to Apple again. I spoke to Apple - they said send it.
    In the end, I fixed in myself by folding a little piece of paper and slipping it between the keyboard and the ledge it sits on. Now, no noise, no bouncing.

    I agree that this is something Apple has to address. I mean, they talk their industrial design up, but sometimes I think it's all for show. I've heard the iBook hinge problem before, and I can't even tighten the hinge on mine, so it flops everywhere.

    That said, I never had a single problem with my bondi iMac or my LC575, or my MacPlus (with external HD). Maybe if you get a dud machine, you get a dud machine, and there's nothing you can do.

  7. rainman::|:| macrumors 603


    Feb 2, 2002
    Ok several things you're complaining about aren't Apple's defects, Apple doesn't manufacture things like the optical drives, hard drives, and LCD screens.

    I've been using Macs since the Macintosh SE, and i've never once had a hardware problem that wasn't caused by me. Only real problem i remember having at my high school, where we had something like 150 Macs, was that the CD-ROM drive on a 5400 kept flaking in and out. Wasn't a big deal in the end, they just replaced it. out of the 18 5400's we bought at once, it was the only one to defect. Not bad. These issues strike PC users, too, you know.

    Computers are immensely complicated machines, that are mass produced very quickly and efficiently. There's bound to be a margin of error. Some people just catch that margin a lot more frequently than others, it would seem...

  8. ibookin' macrumors 65816


    Jul 7, 2002
    Los Angeles, CA
    I've had problems with my iBook, but those don't really count because I dropped the thing.

    My friend's TiBook (Rev. B 667) had problems with the screen and had to be replaced with a Rev. C 667.

    My friend's iBook (800 Combo) came to her with a stripped screw on the Airport riser. She can't upgrade the RAM until she sends the thing to Apple.

    I work at a high school, though, and we have had next to no problems with our 200+ iMacs (less than 10% had issues, and most of those were due to abuse or user error)
  9. MacBandit macrumors 604


    Aug 9, 2002
    Springfield, OR (Home of the Simpsons)
    I work in a service industry and I must say that warranty is one of those things that you can be bent to the will of the provider. If you approach the producer and you are nice and understanding you can get more then the warranty would cover. If you approach the producer and are demanding, excited, and place pressure on a person all of a sudden your warranty is worth nearly squat.

    Just like the old adage says you can catch more flies with honey.

    Oh and by the way in the 13 years I've been using Macs I have never once had a problem with the computers. My Apple Studio Display 17 had a black spot in the screen when I first got it. They sent it off and had it dissassembled and repaired. Turned out there was spec of dirt on the inside of the glass. I still use that monitor nearly 4 years later no problems. That is the only failure of any kind I have ever had. I have had software hangs and the like but never something that wasn't caused by some third party software or crummy hardware.
  10. ddtlm macrumors 65816

    Aug 20, 2001
    I've interacted with 4 Quicksilvers (and lots of older machines) and they've all been pretty much fine (with a few oddities). Mine is probably the most defective, with a stiff door and some minor cracks in the plastic.


    Your story is strange. I feel some sympathy for you, but not knowing either you or the people at Apple, I don't think that I can place fault with either. Sometimes it really is user error... although of course no user ever believes that. :) I'm sure you'll come along and tell me how it's not, but like I say, I don't know either way.
  11. Nipsy macrumors 65816


    Jan 19, 2002
    I would call your contact and offer to ship the whole thing to him, for him to evaluate, and repair.

    If it is really manufacturing, and not user error, then proceed to the following

    Mention that if you don't feel satisfied with the 'executive' repair, you'll be contacting:
    Local Television Consumer Show

    Make it clear that if they cannot get you a working machine, that you'll dedicate some time to having consumer affairs groups do it for you (inclusive of all the bad pr). Mention that your loyalty has been tested to the point where you're so fed up you're going to kick up a big loud stink, if you don't get a good reaction. Mention that one angry consumer with a valid point can make it from the web, to the papers, to TV with a little effort.

    Do this very cordially, and you may see a 100% quality refurb. You won't get a new machine period.
  12. JoeG4 thread starter macrumors 68030


    Jan 11, 2002
    Bay Area, Ca.

    See this is the problem right here.

    Apple doesn't accept that as a fact, instead, they insist every computer that comes out of their plant is perfect and anything that's not functioning right is at the fault of the owner.

    And as I said, I reinstalled the os several times, even idling on a fresh system it freezes.

    *shrug* I guess that's just my luck. Too bad it changes the whole side for me because now whenever I consider a computer apple PROBABLY won't be in the list.

    As for the other parts, I understand this. I've already taken the machine in on several occasions for fixing - one time compusa marked $830+ on repairs on their receipt, however, I believe what I am asking for is fair, and still don't see why they can't comply.
  13. JoeG4 thread starter macrumors 68030


    Jan 11, 2002
    Bay Area, Ca.
    LOL nipsy, yes, true that is, but I won't take it quietly ;)
  14. MacBandit macrumors 604


    Aug 9, 2002
    Springfield, OR (Home of the Simpsons)
    You won't take i quietly? This is why you won't get a replacement at all. Being polite will get you a lot farther then screaming bloody murder. I know this from the personal perspective of being on the receiving end of the counter.

    If you can get them to offer a refurb you should take it and run.
  15. JoeG4 thread starter macrumors 68030


    Jan 11, 2002
    Bay Area, Ca.
    So far, macbandit, I've done nothing but be polite, to the point, etc, including showing WHY I need the machine replaced.

    Believe me, it is possible to ask for something big without being mean about it ;)

    Unfortunately, of course, there are certain people who have attitudes, and those I find are best passed by escalating over them or 'driving around them'

    Of course, I hit a rock that's rather solid, and have yet any luck finding a way around it.

    Note: Now that I think about it, macbandit, I did have a friend who after many of the same problems I've had, actually DID get his computer replaced with a new one, that even had extras his old one didn't. Of course, he didn't run into this guy that I did. :(
  16. JoeG4 thread starter macrumors 68030


    Jan 11, 2002
    Bay Area, Ca.
    Oh yeah, I came across an interesting post and thought up a good reply, and perhaps this will make you think a little deeper next time, ;)

    Anyway, I'm not out for the cosmetic defects that happened to most quicksilvers like the funky marks on the front panel that look like cracks, nor the simple things like the keyboard, those just peeve me to heck and back.

    I'm upset because of things that I haven't seen on other g4s, things that I pointed out and were neglected several times, no matter how clear I made it, and when a place finally got it right, apple forgot about the parts and I ended up getting my machine back with no repairs!

    The sad thing is, I've been driven to so much trouble with this computer, I don't want to see it again, and I don't feel that I should have to take the huge loss because someone else made a mistake.

    While it all leads down to my mistake of buying an apple computer, I can't take that back now, and there are other people that can. The cracks on my computer can't fix themselves, and nor can the dent in the reputation of apple as it stands. I agree that their products are good to a point, as my brother's g4 imac is purring upstairs with no problem, at all.

    However, stuff like this doesn't help when I ask for a powerbook, or etc, because then my mom (who paid for this machine, though it is, for all legal reasons mine), points at my g4 and asks why she should pay for another product if it could end up like that. If I go around posting this, other people might think the same, and frankly, that's the kind of thing I'm trying to point out.

    Apple made a mistake, but they can fix it, and even after all the trouble I've been through so far, they can STILL fix it, and all is well.

    Just think, for one second, that perhaps your next apple computer could be like mine, your new little bundle of joy could have cracks, or could overheat, and maybe you'd end up in the same position I am. Think about it... wouldn't you feel the same way?

    What if you saw a really expensive computer that you had to save up and hope for, and finally, the day you get it, you happen to get the one that has all the problems, and instead of being greeted by the people in the store happy to fix the mistake, they're rude, and tell you to shove it? How would you feel? If they took your computer and told you they wouldn't give you another one that acutally worked ok?

    Sorry if I'm dragging this on, but just try to imagine being in my situation. It really stinks, doesn't it?

    Besides, a cosmetic flaw IS a problem, imagine being at an airport or on a plane and the person sitting next to you looks at your ibook and says "ooh that's a nice computer!" and then you show them how great it is, suddenly when you close the lid they see a huge crack on it, and ask why it hasn't been fixed, and your answer "They don't cover cosmetic defects."

    You think they'd want an ibook then?
  17. LethalWolfe macrumors G3


    Jan 11, 2002
    Los Angeles

    I think you just have the bad luck of being "that guy." You know, the 1 in a million guy that has problems no one else does. Like others here I've experienced none of the problems you have. Heck, the loudest part of my dual gig QS is when the SuperDrive spins up (and I have 4HDDs in that thing).

    I will agree that my QS over heats so I've had to make some minor adjustments to keep it stable (granted I have 4 HDDs in there, but Apple made room for 4HDDs so they shoulda assumed poeple would put 4HDDs in there and made sure the case had appropriate cooling).

  18. DavidFDM macrumors regular

    Jan 26, 2002
    Maine, USA
    I have dual 17" LCD Studio Displays in my set-up. One of them's live area was slightly out of alignment (there was no black border at the top). This was always disconcerting to me so I took it to my local computer store, an Apple affiliate. Rick took it in, talked to Apple and 5 days later a new one arrived. Granted it was still under warranty but it was absolutely no hassle.

    I have owned a whole slew of Macs, 10 since 1985, and have had only marginal issues. My Powerbook 1400 had one dead pixel and its faceplate for the CD module was attached rather shabbily. My IIci, 7100 and Beige G3 minitowers were all workhorses with no problems. That said, I have seen some issues with others. I am convinced the Blue & White G3's were cursed. Everyone I have ever worked with acts real flaky.

    I think the quality level that comes out of Apple is pretty good to excellent. Issues have come up like the Powerbook 5300 but Apple generally deals with them. It is however distressing to hear when a problem cannot be resolved when the problem lies clearly in Apple's lap.

    Warmest regards from the frozen state of Maine,

  19. Mr. MacPhisto macrumors 6502

    Jan 16, 2003
    I've never had a problem with my iBook at all. There are no cracks, no defects that I can detect. The only thing that I noticed is that the combo drive cannot play dual-layered SACDs that have a layer that can be played on regular CD drives, but I made Apple aware of this. Don't know if they'll do anything about it, but it's no big deal. When I called Apple, they were courteous and willing to spend time with me to see if we could figure out a way to make it work.

    The only problem I've ever heard of from people I know was when a new iMac was DOA. Apple was contacted that same day and a new one was rushed through and overnighted, arriving the next morning before 10AM.
  20. ddtlm macrumors 65816

    Aug 20, 2001

    Do you really think that you have better odds with another company? I'm sure most of us have heard horror stories about them all. I for one am not about to start believing that my odds of getting a crap machine and someone at Apple who won't get it fixed are greater than my odds with some other company.

    At work, we've even got machines with 5-figure annual support costs and semi-custom hardware that we can't get decent support on until we scream like bloody murder.
  21. Moxiemike macrumors 68020


    Jan 1, 2002
    Pittsburgh, PA
    i've only ever had two problems with my macs.

    my G4 dual 450 came DOA out of the box with a bad hard drive. apple replaced the WHOLE machine.

    I took the old one back to Cusa, with my RMA, and they replaced it for a brand new one. Word!

    The other thing was, a woman in my office knocked my lombard off of my desk, killing the screen. Apple and Cusa teamed up again to replace my lombard with a ti 667 rev.b. Word!

    So yea. I guess because i was nice they made some excpetions. Judging from Joeg4's tone in his posts.... i seriously doubt he was calm and considerate. Sounds more like a confrontational whiner, and while some of his problems seem legit, complaining about fans and hard drive spin-ups is subjective.....

    And generally a fact of life. Hard Drives spin and whirr when we use them. I don't find it annoying... but rather fascinating. I'm sure Apple has classified him as RPiA
  22. bombensington macrumors regular

    Aug 24, 2002

    Did you get apple care? Is it still within the one year warranty?

    Take your machine over to an Apple Store - take it to the Genius Bar. Tell them you've been having these problems, and you can't take it any more. BE NICE! Describe everything that's happening, in as much detail as you can. Don't demand, don't be mean or rude, just be understanding and nice - you will get further this way, trust me.

    If you can't get what you want over the phone, be proactive and go by other means to get it.
  23. MacBandit macrumors 604


    Aug 9, 2002
    Springfield, OR (Home of the Simpsons)
    I do truly understand where your coming from but I don't see me ever getting in the situation you are in. I have done my best to make a really good relationship with my local Apple authorized retailer. I know that if any of my equipment even had a scratch on it when removed from the packaging they would be happy to fix/replace it.

    You may feel you made a mistake for buying Apple but the simple fact is Apple has the best customer support in the industry.
  24. RBMaraman macrumors 65816


    Jul 25, 2002
    Prospect, KY
    Actually, it does get better with time. I got my iBook in August of 2001. By November the squeaking was unbearable. So, I called Apple, and like everyone else, I laughed when they told me it gets better with time. Now, almost a year and a half later, it maybe squeaks once a month. Just give it time. I found that opening it really fast over and over again massages the hinges, reducing the squeaking.
  25. Mr. MacPhisto macrumors 6502

    Jan 16, 2003
    Does this squeeking occur on newer iBooks? I got my iBook 700 with Combo back in September and have never had a single squeak out of the joint. As I've said, I've not had any real problems with this machine at all - software or hardware.

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