Ideas for a dying Early 2011 Macbook Pro?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by odedia, Dec 20, 2014.

  1. odedia macrumors 65816

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    #1
    Well, I finally gave up on my Macbook Pro with the notorious AMD GPU issues.

    I bought a high end 5k iMac and a low end 13.3" Macbook Air when mobility is needed.

    Still, the 2011 Macbook Pro (17") is usable to some degree when used with gfxcardstatus forcing the integrated GPU, and when no GPU intensive tasks re running (especially Apple Preview, surprisingly).

    I would appreciate some ideas of uses for this laptop. I already have a NAS, so no need for that. I might consider using it as an extra processing cluster for Compressor, but that's a very niche use that mostly is not needed. Remember I cannot use any external monitor due to the failing AMD GPU.

    Your thoughts are welcomed.

    Thanks.
     
  2. GoldfishRT macrumors 6502

    GoldfishRT

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    #2
    Frankly, I'd get it repaired as cheaply as possible, Apple Depot or otherwise, and sell it for every penny you can get out of it. It's only a matter of time before it's unusable even with the integrated graphics.
     
  3. odedia thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #3
    I appreciate the idea, but my concience would not let me do it. This machine is not worth the money anymore...

    By the way, what's apple depot?
     
  4. sevoneone, Dec 20, 2014
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2014

    sevoneone macrumors 6502

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    #4
    Depot is a term used by Apple service techs and Geniuses when they send a system out to be repaired at an Apple facility instead of ordering the parts and completing the repair in-house. It is a flat rate service that is typically costlier because they go through with a fine-toothed comb and replace anything that is out of spec. Essentially it is sending the machine to be refurbished. It is usually recommended in cases of liquid damage or when there are multiple failed components where individual parts and labor add up to more than the depot cost. The down side is that it takes longer than having the machine repaired locally.

    You are usually advised to remove any 3rd party hardware, including HDD/SSD and RAM, and put the original parts back in as the depot has been known to replace those components if they it don't meet Apple specs. They will replace them with parts that match what originally shipped with the system too.

    As to what to do with the system, I kinda have to echo trying to repair and/or selling it, maybe even parting it out.
     
  5. chriscrk macrumors 6502a

    chriscrk

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    #5
    I'm having the exact same issue as you, with my 15 inch, early 2011 MBP. Although mine has reached the point where I can't even turn it on in different boot modes, and only seems to fix itself when re-installing the OS.

    I wouldn't feel right selling it to someone, especially if they don't know about the graphics issue. I have considered maybe trying to sell it in parts (because if it's only the logic board failing, the battery, screen, casing, etc., might be useful for someone and could be sold online eventually).

    My other idea is simply keeping it and hoping for a miracle in which Apple gets sued big time, and they have to replace all affected 2011 MBP's :cool: But that's kind of wishing on a star at this moment i think.
    I recommend, if you haven't, signing the different petitions online complaining about this issue, as any little bit helps and on a big one they're reaching 20,000 signs i believe.
     
  6. yjchua95 macrumors 604

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    #6
    I'd suggest you send in your 17" to a reballing service.

    Although not a permanent fix, it'll at least last far longer than Apple's refurb logic board.
     
  7. odedia thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #7
    Actually Apple already got sued :). But these things take years.

    http://www.macrumors.com/2014/10/28/macbook-pro-2011-graphics-lawsuit/
     
  8. chriscrk macrumors 6502a

    chriscrk

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    #8
  9. odedia thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #9
    Think about it, last week Apple won a class action lawsuit about having a monopoly with iPods. That's like 10 years ago.

    I'm done waiting. If I get something out of this in the next few years, cool. If not - at least I have a machine to work with in the meantime.
     
  10. chriscrk macrumors 6502a

    chriscrk

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    #10
    Oh yeah, but that lawsuit was kind of a different subject, didn't involve a bunch of broken machines...

    I won't wait I guess, I'll get a new computer whenever I can, but I'll probably keep the 2011 model just in case something happens... Don't loose much by waiting I guess.
     
  11. yjchua95 macrumors 604

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    #11
    When my 2011 15" broke, I replaced it with two rMBPs (both late-2013, 13" and 15", both maxed out).

    Now I've learnt not to put all my eggs in one basket, and spread tasks out across two laptops.

    Anyway, I kept my 2011 15", and a few months later, when my assignments were all done, I sent it to a third party to reball a new GPU with leaded solder, and reapplying the thermal paste. Now it's purring like new.
     
  12. chriscrk macrumors 6502a

    chriscrk

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    #12
    I wish I had that kind of money to spare! :D
     
  13. yjchua95 macrumors 604

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    #13
    So do I :)

    Originally I was planning to use the money earned from my assignments to finance for a holiday, but when my 2011 15" broke, I had to divert some of it to buy the rMBPs :/

    Anyway, a reball cost me USD 80 (I sent it for a reball in Malaysia, when I was shooting an assignment there).
     
  14. Queen6, Dec 23, 2014
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2014

    Queen6 macrumors 603

    Queen6

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    #14
    Am in a very different line of business, equally that`s what I do, I have two Retina`s with identical software and shared data, in the event of issue I can switch machine. I generally spread the work across both systems. I have been lucky with Apple and never had a computer go "dark" in the field, which is just as well as Apple stores are few and far between in the jungle or the desert...

    Also have one of the afflicted 2011`s which I passed to my daughter, swapped out Apple`s cooling algorithm for Macs Fan Control and she uses it on an elevated aluminium stand to help it run cooler. If it lasts until mid 2015 it wont be too bad as she will then inherit the 2012 Retina. Right now it`s still running, however there is now a slight colour shift when changing from the integrated GPU to discrete GPU, possibly a sign of things to come. Ideally I would like to get six good years use, equally you get lucky sometimes, still have an Early 2008 with the 8600GT (another GPU fiasco) and that`s never had an issue and has more hours on it than all the other Mac`s combined.

    Right now Apple simply has a bad track record with portables with dGPU`s and I am not looking to choose another anytime soon, the 2012 Retina will be the last replaced with a 15" with integrated graphics only as they are getting ever more powerful and far more reliable. Next retina will be a generation ahead in CPU & iGPU and likely more than enough for my needs, I far prefer to drop the dGPU and up to a 1Tb SSD adding more storage and speed to the system than a dGPU that may result in the machine prematurely failing...

    Q-6
     
  15. yjchua95 macrumors 604

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    #15
    With plug and play eGPUs around already (like the Sonnet IIID with a desktop GPU combo, but at a very high price), one can already have a laptop without a dGPU and still reap the benefits of having a dGPU, and with a desktop class GPU, in fact.

    Granted, it's not as fast as a natively connected GPU, but benchmarks have consistently shown that a GTX 780 Ti in a Sonnet IIID performs at 85-95% of its full power over Thunderbolt 2. Which is pretty impressive already.

    The reason why I went with a 15" rMBP with a dGPU is because I do a lot of on-site editing and rendering, so carrying a Sonnet IIID with me everywhere would be awkward.
     
  16. Queen6 macrumors 603

    Queen6

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    #16
    Completely agree, same portability is high on the list, if your going to haul a eGPU etc, may as well just use a Mac Pro :) For me I can live without the dGPU thankfully and my secondary MBP is now a high end 13" Retina, if I am on a long term assignment I will just buy a semi decent external display and use that, gift it and printer etc to charity when we are done. If just a short term assignment I will use the 2012 Retina, swapping between the systems is seamless as both machines share the same data set.

    Q-6
     
  17. ano0oj macrumors 6502

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  18. odedia thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #18
    Yes, that's why I'm keeping my machine as well. No point in selling it for 100$ now...

    ----------

    Great idea, though I'm not from the U.S. so that's not an option. Maybe 2011 MBP owners from the states should do this. Pretty good day-to-day machine if you force the integrated graphics.

    Thanks.
     
  19. MkVsTheWorld macrumors regular

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    #19
    Wait, are you the real Derek Zoolander?!

    To the OP, I'm also gonna recommend fixing the laptop and selling it as recommended. I've heard many people's machines are working after that. Just make sure you get a reball with leaded solder and NOT a reflow:

    http://www.xcubicle.com/blog/rework...g-repair-techniques-ps3-and-xbox-360-consoles
     
  20. Queen6 macrumors 603

    Queen6

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    #20
    Not so cool for the buyer, without full disclosure, even replacing a new GPU and leaded solder does not guarantee anything. Apple is accountable unfortunately they will focus on the economics. Personally when my 2011 15" MBP dies I am going to send it to Tim Cook, seriously as it`s no use to me other than an expensive "doorstop"

    Q-6
     
  21. 556fmjoe macrumors 65816

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  22. JoelTheSuperior macrumors 6502

    JoelTheSuperior

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    #22
    Basically this. Reballing isn't a proper fix - contrary to popular belief the issue is rarely with the solder balls underneath the chip, rather that reballing it usually sorts out issues with the bump between the die and the substrate, and as such it's unlikely to keep the machine going for more than a couple more months.

    So yeah, get it fixed, then sell it to someone else so they can worry about it instead.
     
  23. Queen6 macrumors 603

    Queen6

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    #23
    You need to replace the GPU and use leaded solder, this way the Notebook will be usable for a year or two dependent on use. Reballing is pointless GPU will fail again in a matter of months if not less. There is no long term fix for this issue, unless Apple is forced to, which is highly unlikely....

    Q-6
     
  24. chriscrk macrumors 6502a

    chriscrk

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    #24
    I don't understand why it will stop working after some time.
    If you're replacing the logic board, which has the faulty chip, why would it fail again by having a completely new logic board?
     
  25. MkVsTheWorld macrumors regular

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    #25
    I never said to completely omit that a reball was done. I'd personally mention that this was done to fix GPU-related issues, just so the buyer gets a feel for its history. But, I wouldn't go off scaring people away from buying it. Who knows, the GPU problem could be magnified by end user habits that ordinarily wouldn't be a problem for the buyer. My point is, we don't entirely know for sure that every 2011 MBP model is affected or if a reball won't be enough.
     

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