iMac screen goes black. must hard reboot. HELP

Discussion in 'iMac' started by maverick17036, May 24, 2012.

  1. maverick17036 macrumors newbie

    May 11, 2012
    Ok so I just converted to the mac world and bought a new iMac a few months ago. I am not sure if my computer is supposed to do this or if I have a problem. I already had to take it to apple to replace the hard drive thanks to filevault but thats a whole other story. Anyway, here's the issue... when I get home from work I sit down at my computer. The screen is black. Cool! Screen must have dimmed. Should just move the mouse or hit a key and it should come on right? Nope. Nothing happens. The screen will not come on. So I'm thinking that maybe it automatically shut down after an automatic update or something. I hold the power button and then I hear the computer power down! WTF?! I release the button and push it again for it to power up. Everything works fine again. Can anyone tell me what is going on? Thanks!
  2. Hibernia macrumors member

    Apr 24, 2011
    In the last week or so my 2011 imac is doing a similar thing. Will start up okay but after anything from 10 minutes onwards the screen just go's black. Power is still there as my apple usb hub is still powered on but nothing short of a hard reboot powers it down.

    I then have to power up and hope it stays on longer. It does this in mac mode or when in windows mode via bootcamp. I tried time machine to go back before the fault happened and no joy so it does look like a hard ware problem. Of course my one year guarantee has expired and ididnt take out Applecare (no snickering in the back there) so i dont know what to do next myself now :(

    Any advice from peeps outthere would be much appreciated. Puts a real dampner on playing games i can tell you.
  3. chevalier433 macrumors 6502a


    Mar 30, 2011
    Sometimes computer cannot wake from sleep with keyboard or mouse just press the power button like you open your computer happens to me too.
  4. maverick17036 thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 11, 2012
    But I have it set so that it never sleeps. I only have it set to dim the display.
  5. chevalier433 macrumors 6502a


    Mar 30, 2011
    Have you tried a SMC Reset?
  6. maverick17036 thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 11, 2012
    No I did not. I just found the procedures on apple's support website. I will report back to see if there are any improvements.
  7. maverick17036 thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 11, 2012

    It happened again today. I conducted a SMC reset two days ago. I came home from work today and again my computer would not turn on. Had to reboot it. :mad:
  8. mikeb13 macrumors regular

    Jun 19, 2009
    Maverick - I had a very similar problem with my Macbook Pro where the screen would go black and there was nothing I could do except power it off and then power it back it back. I checked Apple's support website and found this article:

    I brought my computer to Apple and they replaced the Logic Board for free. Since you have an iMac, this might not be the same issue but it's worth a look on Apple's website to see if your model iMac has any known issues of the black screen.
  9. chevalier433 macrumors 6502a


    Mar 30, 2011
    The last solution before take it to apple store is clean install of OS X
  10. thewitt macrumors 68020


    Sep 13, 2011
    Had the same issue on two different machines in the office. LED replacements were the fix.
  11. boatlesspirate macrumors newbie

    May 7, 2012
    This is bizarre as my 2010 iMac just started doing this. Could this be a bad update? I'm running Snow leop, not Lion.
  12. macdudesir macrumors 6502

    Jan 16, 2011
    Blacksburg, VA
    My iMac started doing the same thing a month ago! the temporary solution i used was sending the display to software sleep by using a hot corner whenever the screen went black and then clicking to wake it up. That seemed to work for another 10 min. at which time i would have to do it again...took the iMac in for repair on that and they replaced the gfx card which didn't do anything (so if you take it in and they try that it won't work just warning you...) just dropped it off for the 4th "repair attempt" at the apple this point in time, when i booted it up the screen had blue and gray bars across it then would go black and never even booted up...not sure if its from the same thing or not...just thought i would let you know...
  13. Razorhog macrumors 65816


    Sep 16, 2006
    Maybe it's an LCD problem and the computer is still running but the LCD is off. Maybe try connecting another monitor to see if you can still use it after the main display is blank. Or try using keyboard shortcuts to do something that will allow you to tell if the computer is still functioning properly - like playing a song in itunes or something. Just some thoughts...

    EDIT: I see the OP said the machine is only a few months old and was purchased new. Definitely take it to the Apple store!
  14. RobInLutz macrumors newbie

    Aug 10, 2012
    Same thing on Mid2010 27" iMac

    I've been suffering the same problem for the last several months (of course out of warranty). I've found the only solution to bring it out of it's blackness is to put the computer to sleep (Command-Option-Eject) and then wake it right back up again. After that it may last anywhere from several hours to only seconds before it goes black again.

    I've found keeping the brightness at the lowest level makes the display work longer - as soon as i turn it up: blackness again.

    I have TeamViewer installed and I'm able to view the monitor from my iPad - I can launch apps, etc. It's just that I can't see the display on the iMac.

    If I do an SMC reset (and NVRAM reset) I seem to be able to run the display brighter for a longer period of time.

    I took it to our local Mac repair guy and he said he's never encountered this problem before. He took the display off and looked around - he said it might be the module that controls the backlight. It looked like it might have some damage (you could see what looked like a little bit of burning around a couple of the electrical points).

    I didn't do anything yet. He suggested hooking up an external monitor the next time it happens to see if it's still producing a picture. I'm guessing he's thinking that if there's still a picture on the external monitor that the GPU is good, but the backlight is bad.

    Any thoughts from anyone??


  15. macdudesir macrumors 6502

    Jan 16, 2011
    Blacksburg, VA
    Just a late update from the guy who was going in for the 4th repair attempt, they replaced the logic board, graphics card (second time), optical drive fan, hard drive, ram, and the LCD...(for a total of 1500 dollars! plus 700 dollars from the other repairs! :eek: luckily under warranty) anyways, one of those things fixed it, i havent had a problem yet...the only difference is the screen might be a little brighter and the whole computer seems to run even cooler :cool:...idk if this helps anyone or not but i just thought i would share...
  16. mckibben23 macrumors newbie

    Aug 23, 2012
    imac, black screen on wake from sleep

    hi, i'd been getting this for a good time now and tried the various suggestions to no avail. what seems to work, however, is to set a login after wake from sleep.

    the symptoms of my issue were that the desktop would display for a second after the wake from sleep and return to black. the mouse and keyboard continue to work. only a hard reboot would make it recover.

    mid 2011, imac 21", OS 10.7.5, bluetooth kb and mouse.
  17. fitzpats macrumors newbie

    Mar 3, 2013
    black screen issue

    Here's what worked for me... I went into the bluetooth options and unchecked the allow bluetooth device to wake computer and removed an old bluetooth keyboard that was on the list but not in use anymore. Next I remembered that I had unplugged a dual monitor without turning it off first so I plugged that monitor back in and then turned it off before unplugging the 2nd monitor cable on of the back of the iMac. Then I rebooted and voila no more black screen. Not sure which thing I did worked but it was one of the 2. :)
  18. Photojoe55 macrumors newbie

    May 15, 2013
    Black screen

    I don't really understand why that would work, but has it been working okay?
    My Imac is about 2 years old, has very little use but has been in sleep mode quite a bit. 5 minutes in use today and the screen blacked out. Yes the song continued playing, but like the others said only powering down and rebooting works, but for 2 minutes at most. Can you say if yours has been okay since your fix?
  19. El Zilcho macrumors newbie

    Nov 4, 2011
    Did anybody solved this issue? I have late 2009 27'' i7 iMac and it started doing this thing. After some time screen goes black. Computer seems to work, sound continues to play. I can send my iMac to sleep by pushing a power button and when I wake it up screen works for awhile.
    I read somewhere it could be a screen temperature sensor issue. But not sure how to test it and what to do with it.
  20. MrSmokesTooMuch macrumors newbie

    Dec 21, 2013
    No fixes?

    I'm another of the poor bastards with a $1800 computer that goes black-screen after about 10 minutes use and then won't power back up for hours. The fans and hard drive will be running but nothing will bring the screen up. I don't have the correct connector to try a second screen. Only a hard reboot works to shut it down and then it refuses to restart. I'm clearly not alone in this but I haven't seen any solutions beyond the "Had the entire computer rebuilt from scratch under warrenty." Did everyone else give up and switch to PC's? :p
  21. J-DO macrumors newbie

    Dec 23, 2013
    Imac 27" black screen

    I have been drinking the apple juice now for 2 1/2 years but will not buy another imac. The previous imac model had this issue and i guess it was never corrected. I can run mine to an external monitor all day long but the imac screen stays black. Hot corners bring it back but only for a short period (5 minutes or less) i have reinstalled back to factory but no luck. I did not buy a mac mini but feel like i have been ripped off . . Wish apple would stand behind this as it is apparently still an issue . . Suggestions are always welcome.
  22. RufusToots macrumors newbie

    Jan 3, 2014
    Why do we have to pay for our consumer rights?

    Yup, I'm in the same boat :-/ just left my 27 inch iMac (purchased 2010) into the store. They tell me they will be charging me €70 just for the diagnostics and still haven't been able to find the problem with my screen (apart from the fogging on the back on the display - which has ben replaced just over a year after purchase for free- it now just cuts out - just the screen, I can control from my laptop and save files I'm working on etc) though they found a problem with the hard drive and then lost the problem again... I despair, but I refuse to throw good money after bad and if I am spending any more money on this machine it will be to pay for the application to the small claims court for the cost of the repair.
    They also tried to blame the fogging on the back of the glass on the user of the computer smoking... really, can't a person smoke in the same room as a computer anymore?

    I do not believe that anyone should have to pay for Apple care for 1-3 years after the purchase of a machine for over €2000 - it should just work for at least 3years for this price and I will be taking a case to the consumer courts to say the same if they attempt to make me fork out for the repair of an inferior product at a premium price.

    Stand up to them guys, you should get what you pay for not pay for something your already paid top dollar for :)
  23. twech macrumors newbie

    Jan 4, 2014
    I had found another post stating the fan control program by SMC; and it seems to have fixed my issue. My system has been running with the fans on hi for over a day without even a dimming or blinking which had prior happened very often.

    It's a free download and the fan noise is quite loud but better than the alternative in my opinion.


    I had found another post stating the fan control program by SMC; worked for them, I tried and it seems to have fixed my issue as well. My system has been running with the fans on hi for over a day without even a dimming or blinking which had prior happened very often.

    It's a free download and the fan noise is quite loud but better than the alternative in my opinion.
  24. Tropical John macrumors newbie

    Jun 12, 2014

    if you have a mid-2011 machine with an AMD Radeon HM 6970M video card, this might be your fix.

    (click on the little apple, upper left, then "about this mac" then "more info" to find out what model and video card your machine has)
  25. ijlakw macrumors member

    Oct 19, 2013
    I have the same problem... started another thread on the topic. Mine is intermittent though. Very hard to drill down to exactly what is causing the problem and thus, having the iMac show the problem while with the Blue Shirts.

    I was able to stabilize the problem by doing two things: First, install SMCFancontrol and get those fans running. Second, try to turn the brightness down. The black out still occurs... but not nearly as often. I realize that both of these are marginal solutions... but Apple didn't offer me a solution. They would not replace the graphics board unless they saw the problem first hand.

    Good luck.

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