iMac hardware failure + exceptionally poor service from Apple

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Strengthu, Aug 28, 2012.

  1. Strengthu macrumors newbie

    Jul 29, 2012
    In July, my iMac 27" i7 suddenly had problems. Seemed to be the GPU gone bust, as discussed in this thread:

    Well, I brought it to the geniuses at the Apple Store at IFC Mall in Hong Kong. Then the fun began. First it took over a week before they got back me to with an update. That's ok. Then eventually I got a call saying I could pick it up, after another week. So I went to the store. They had replaced the video card and also replaced the screen (the latter, I didn't have to pay for so I thought that was good).

    We started up the machine just to make sure. Well, immediately as it started, the machine was totally not functional with visual distortions and so forth. Quite annoying as I was about to pay and bring it with me.

    So another 5-6 days passed. Got email from Apple saying it was ready to pick up, and also phone calls. Was about to travel over there to get it but thought I'd call first to ask what they had done differently this time. Then I talked to 2-3 different people and they all seemed clueless. Eventually talked to a manager who said it was a mistake and I can't come and pick it up after all. They need to check some more was what he said.


    Another 4-5 days, they sent me email saying I could pick it up. If I logged in to check my repair status it said it was ready. Also, I had received 3 different repair ID's in the process. I called them again, and they confirmed it was ready to go.

    At Apple, they started it up, and it looked ok this time. Their paperwork was a mess and when I asked if they could tell me the repair history, they couldn't. Eventually they told me that they had replaced the video card and screen, but couldn't confirm if they had done it twice. From what I could tell from the papers, it seemed that they had not replaced it the first time. BUT.. they were actually going to charge me for a new video card the first time I was there!!

    Anyway, I let it go as I need it for freelance work I do from home and I was basically loosing money here. I paid and left.

    After spending most of a weekend re-installing everything, setting up all my resources, font management, plug-ins and so forth, it all seemed good.

    Now, last night, a bit over a month since I took it to Apple. THE PROBLEM CAME BACK. Visual distortion. Can't be used.

    I'm very disappointed with this whole thing. If I bring it back, it'll just be another few weeks of no solution and not knowing if the problem is fixed and/or if it will come back in the middle of a project.

    With all the Apple products I've bought over the years, and since convincing my studio to go Mac instead of PC 5 years ago, we've bought about 12 Mac Pro's, some fully specced 12'cores. And not to mention all the friends over the years I've convinced to get Apple.

    This feels like a slap in the face.

    Not sure what to do next. I think Apple should just give me a new iMac to resolve this. If they approach this the way they've done so far, I'm prepared to make a lot of fuss. Who will listen? Probably nobody. But I certainly will.

    Very frustrated long time Apple user.

    P.S: It's not under Apple Care.

    Attached Files:

  2. rkaufmann87 macrumors 68000


    Dec 17, 2009
    Folsom, CA
    Laughable thought thinking your entitled to a replacement without AppleCare. If you had purchased AppleCare you might have a leg to stand on but without it, you're just being irrational IMHO.

    Sorry you had trouble and you should contact Apple's customer service (not Apple Care), I don't know the HK # but if you call AppleCare and request to be connected to customer service you can make your request but I would be EXTREMELY surprised if it got you anywhere.
  3. Strengthu thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 29, 2012

    Fair enough. That's probably my frustration speaking.
  4. btbrossard macrumors 6502a

    Oct 25, 2008
    Certainly understandable.

    I'd go back to the Apple Store you paid for the repair last month and calmly explain that the same problem is back now - just a month after you paid to have it fixed. Politely ask them to help you to work to get your computer back up and running.

    Hopefully they'll be able to get it fixed for you. Just remember to remain calm and to not get upset.

    I've seen quite a few people go into a customer service exchange with a tone of hostility and right away the employees put up a wall and get standoffish.

    I hope you can get your iMac sorted out. Good luck!
  5. Orange Furball macrumors 65816

    Orange Furball

    May 18, 2012
    Scranton, PA, USA
    Why does everyone always demand a replacement from Apple? No matter what the problem is I always see people asking for them!
  6. turtlez macrumors 6502a


    Jun 17, 2012
    I went through something similar with my 2007 macbook pro. Ended up just giving up after three tries because the repairs were not worth it. Apple is great... if you get Apple care. They are the worst other wise :p
  7. VPrime macrumors 68000


    Dec 19, 2008
    London Ontario
    I just went through a similar ordeal at a local apple store.. Except My iMac had apple care.

    They couldn't repair my computer after countless tries, and kept telling me to come in and pick it up thinking I would accept a semi-working computer.

    Apples repair service has gone down hill BIG TIME... Guess the geniuses are too busy replacing iPhones and iPads to remember the process of fixing a computer.:rolleyes:
  8. iSayuSay macrumors 68030


    Feb 6, 2011
    One more reason to not get iMac for my next computer. Real computer problems seem more and more being too complicated for Apple and its Geniuses. There's not much any other suggestion you can get beside reset, restore, or reinstall for most of your problems. Genius? :rolleyes:

    Sure any electronics and computers out there can go busted and FUBAR in a second.
    But iMac seems easier to get things messed up. Not just because forum is hospital, but I'd say the iMac design is asking for problems or failures. Displays, HDDs, GPUs, even logic boards.. Critical or not.

    Sorry OP, most likely Apple won't take your machine in without AppleCare. You have to pay for the repairs out of your own pocket, I'm afraid. But yeah, hard lesson learned, iMac needs AppleCare! Never buy without one. iMac has one of the cheapest AppleCare around compared to another Mac products. Go get one if your iMac still under warranty and you haven't.
  9. davidgnomo macrumors 6502a


    Feb 16, 2012
    Imola (BO) - Italy
    That makes Apple stuff even more espansive if you have to get AppleCare to be sure you won 't get any trouble ...
  10. VPrime macrumors 68000


    Dec 19, 2008
    London Ontario
    My iMac had applecare and they still couldn't fix it.. At one point they outright refused to fix it.
    Applecare is not the solution. I will never buy applecare again.

    It has come to the point where many of the geniuses (especially new ones) are not qualified to fix these computers. It doesn't matter on form factor. iMac, macbook, mac mini or even mac pro.
    They can't seem to fix them as all their training and time is being spent on ios devices.

    Apple needs to split off the genius bar into ios geniuses and actual geniuses of the past. Ones that ONLY deal with computers.
  11. iSayuSay macrumors 68030


    Feb 6, 2011
    Yeah I recall your thread about bad service from AppleCare. But I do think it's the store's or staffs fault. And it's still better of you for having AppleCare than not.

    At least you can bargain on your feet because your iMac still had AppleCare intact. Without one, they owe you and your iMac nothing, so actually it's only make them easier to kick you out of the store.
  12. harcosparky macrumors 68020

    Jan 14, 2008


    APPLE CARE is NOT an expensive option. The expensive option is NOT BUYING Apple Care.



    It makes Dell, Gateway, HP, ASUS, Lenovo and every other computer a little more expensive if you want to extend warranty coverage beyond the standard warranty range to be sure you won't have any trouble.

    Oh and when the Windows machines are replaced under warranty you get ripped off as you have to pay the depreciation loss out of pocket.

    Around here we have 12 computers ....... 3 of them are Windows Notebooks.

    We had to have 2 computers replaces under extended warranties that WOULD NOT HAVE BEEN REPLACED without the extended warranties.

    The two that were replaced were one ASUS Notebook and one Gateway Notebook. Both were replaced with LENOVO units that also have extended warranties that cover accidental damage.

    Having had extended warranty experience with Apple through the Apple Store and Windows machines through other vendor my experience has been that Apple WINS !!!!!!!!!
  13. iSayuSay macrumors 68030


    Feb 6, 2011
    I might appreciate more if AppleCare is included as standard feature on each of Apple products. :eek:

    Apple charges premium on its products, some of them are ridiculously premium .. so having a standard 3 years warranty could be a nice bonus. IIRC some of Dell products like Dell Ultrasharp displays include them by standard.
  14. senseless macrumors 68000


    Apr 23, 2008
    Pennsylvania, USA
    Electronic failures are unlikely during the extended period. It's going to be in first few months or years later. I'll take the risk.
  15. Nightarchaon macrumors 65816


    Sep 1, 2010
    Because of 2 things,

    1. Apple sell themselves as a quality device builder, but build shoddy, cheap products with shiney cases and spangly extras, apple are the ultimate snake oil salesmen of our generation, I have crappy, plasticy "shoddily built" laptops and desktops that ARE STILL RUNNING over a decade after purchase, but EVERY apple product i have owned has needed replacement/repair in under three years, sometimes more than once.(except my 1st gen iPhone, still going strong and in use by my mum)

    Apple have a habit of trying to hide design faults and failures from the public, i saw this with the Nvidia issue, i had to fight to get my Macbook pro replaced (even though it cost Nivida, not apple, to do this) and I had to force the issue with apple to get my out-of-warranty, paid for by Nvidia , repair, all the while Apple are saying that its out of warranty, they cant do anything, buy a new one.

    Instead of Recalling the 1st gen time capsule when they found out the capacitors that were in the PSU were from shoddy stock, they ignored it, it took public pressure, and threats of a class action lawsuit (the threat of the lawsuit didn't do it, the threat of the Bad Press from such a suit did) for Apple to knowledge fault and send out replacement equipment.

    There is a similar issue with iMac screens, not being sealed correctly dust gets between the glass, active layer and light and ruins the screen, but instead of fixing the issue at source and eating into the profit margins, or issuing a recall and have a stock crash, they continue to sell shoddy , known to have a good chance to be faulty, equipment and hope it lasts longer than the warranty period.

    and of course,

    2. If my PC breaks, i can replace the component, purchased from any PC parts re-seller, cheaply and easily, if my iMac breaks, chances are, i have to replace my iMac, or pay Apple almost the cost of a new one to replace the Logic board/screen

    now , i Love my iMac, i just wish apple were a bit smarter with the design, like why is the SSD drive not accessible via a slot at the bottom of the machine like the memory ? (other than to gouge people for more money from apple)

    Everyone i know who owns, or has owned a mac has had it fail, utterly, with the exception of one G4 macpro a friend owns they intel generation of macs owned by myself and people i know have never lasted the entire run of an applecare plan without needing to be repaired at least once. I think applecare should be included in the price of new macs as standard.

    I use a macbook pro (the early 2008, old style one with the Nvidia 8600m) and my iMac all the time, i use mac because the OS is faster and lighter than Windows, more user friendly than Linux, and im to lazy to organize my terabytes of movies and tv shows so i let iTunes do it for me.

    I do not recommend Macs to friends and Family, i tell them to get PCs, Macs are unreliable, failure prone, nightmares.. but they do look pretty and take up less room, compared to a PC
  16. iSayuSay macrumors 68030


    Feb 6, 2011
    So if your machine breaks early, say within 3 or 4 months after purchase. You'll still take the risk and off without AppleCare?

    Not sure if that's bold or silly. But I hope your actions and thought don't live up to your nickname :D
  17. Swordylove macrumors 6502a


    Apr 23, 2012

    And this.
  18. tuxon86 macrumors 65816

    May 22, 2012
    AppleCare is nice, but depending where you live it may be optional. Where I live we have what is called a "Legal Waranty", which says that any device that you buy must have an effective lifespan comparative to other same device in the same price range. If I buy a fridge for example, it is expected to last at least 10 years. Same goes for a TV set or a computer. By law, where I live, even if I don't have Applecare, if my iMac dies after the one year basic waranty run out, but before what is expected to be a normal life for a comparable product, Apple is required by law to either repair it or replace it free of charge.

    This is why, here, we consider extended waranty totaly wortless and a sham by the seller to cash in on some bonus commission.
  19. duervo macrumors 68020


    Feb 5, 2011
    I wish things were that way where I live. Must be nice!
  20. senseless macrumors 68000


    Apr 23, 2008
    Pennsylvania, USA
    Extended warranties, in general, are poor financial decisions. There is often more profit in selling warranties than in the product itself. It's a good lifelong strategy to assume some risk and not attempt to insure everything you own.
  21. harcosparky macrumors 68020

    Jan 14, 2008
    I used to believe that myth as well, I did years ago.

    In May 2011, thanks to an extended warranty a 16 month old LG LCD Televsion had an electrical failure and was replaced with a Samsung LCD Television.

    In July 2012 the Samsung LCD had an electrical failure and was replaced under an extended warranty.

    Both TV's were just months outside the standard warranty period.

    Neither TV has any moving parts.
  22. m00min macrumors 6502

    Jul 17, 2012
    Yep. I've never bought any extended warranties. I figure I've probably saved enough to buy two Apple laptops by now so if one dies I'll just go and replace it.

    Of course if it breaks in the first year there's a warranty on it anyway, if it lasts the year TVs, computers, etc have an annoying habit of lasting for ever so you can't justify an upgrade :p

    When I bought my first VCR the guy in Dixons tried to sell me an extended warranty that cost half the VCR. He tried the old scare tactic of "there's lots of moving parts". He seemed flummoxed when I told him if it broke I'd just buy a new one.
  23. forty2j macrumors 68030


    Jul 11, 2008
    I actually have a <2 yr old Sony TV being fixed under extended warranty this afternoon. My wife hasn't had to buy a new TV for video gaming in many years.. originally bought a 24", replaced with a 27" under extended warranty, and then a recall on the 27" resulted in owning the current 32". I replaced 2 Turtle Beach headsets under extended warranty last week. We replaced a Beats Solo headset under extended warranty a couple months ago. For the most part, we get our money's worth out of every extended warranty we buy.. but we don't just automatically buy it. Depends on the cost and our assessment of the reliability of the product.
  24. harcosparky macrumors 68020

    Jan 14, 2008
    What prompted me to begin getting the warranty's was a Sony HDTV that was 13 months old when it died.

    Out of warranty ...
    Out of luck ...
    Out of a lot of $$$$$$$$$$$$
  25. RUGERMAN macrumors regular

    Jun 12, 2010
    There's no free lunch, a company has to charge more to sell products in that environment.

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