Late 2013 iMac 27" Screen Failure (Horizontal/Vertical Lines)

Discussion in 'iMac' started by indigosixalpha, Sep 8, 2015.

  1. indigosixalpha macrumors newbie

    Sep 8, 2015
    I purchased a brand new Apple iMac (Late 2013) 27" iMac from Apple in August of 2013. It's fully loaded with i7, 4GB DDR GTX 780M, 16GB ram, etc. Usage is light-to-medium for photo editing and web browsing.

    Yesterday my screen displayed vertical and horizontal lines. Absolutely nothing on the screen was legible. The screen came back to life after a few seconds. I figured it was a fluke. I put the Mac to sleep for a few hours as I normally do when I'm done using it. Upon waking it up, the vertical and horizontal lines on the entire screen came back again. This time for good. I've done several restarts, holding down command + option + P + R, and nothing works. I figure it's a hardware fault. Very disappointing for something so new and so expensive. I've been a PC builder and user for years and I thought I'd absolutely have a rock solid high end professional bulletproof computer when buying my iMac. I've scoured the entire internet and nobody seems to have had this problem on this new of an iMac.

    I purchased a Thunderbolt to HDMI cable and I plan to hook the iMac up to my Plasma and see if I get video. If I do, then I can rule out my video card. Is my plan solid?

    I'm also considering taking it into Apple but I have a feeling they will tell me to kick rocks as my warranty is up. Any word of Apple good-willing these types of repairs? I have been a very loyal Apple user for a period of years now. This is very disappointing and my confidence in Apple computers has gone down.

    I also posted on Apple forums too to see what people say.

    Seems parts such as the video card or LCD are hard to find in the states. Not only that, they are super expensive. I searched eBay. This is sad. Very sad.

  2. indigosixalpha thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 8, 2015
    I connected the iMac to my Plasma TV using a thunderbolt to HDMI cable. I get video. So it appears the LCD is bad... unless the connection between the computer and the LCD is toast.. but from what I have read about LG displays, it appears I got unlucky. I read of nobody else with a 2012/2013 iMac that had their screen fail.
  3. indigosixalpha thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 8, 2015
    Update 9/10/15:

    I took my iMac into the Apple store at Fashion Island in Newport Beach, CA just now and I wanted to update this thread. The technician verified that the LCD was indeed bad.

    I explained to the technician and the store manager that my iMac was exactly 24 months old and while I understand it is not under the 1-year warranty any more, that Apple should good-will the replacement of my LCD screen given that the expectation of high-end product such as the iMac should not fail within two years of purchase.

    While I understand Apple has no legal requirement to replace my LCD screen, I am disappointed that Apple, even despite my request, would not even cover any portion of the repair. Given the actual cost to Apple for this mass-producted part is likely well under 1/4th the retail cost, you would think it would be beneficial to Apple to at least assist a loyal customer with the costs of repairs relative to the negative attention and word-of-mouth. The latter is far more damaging if even one person is swayed against purchasing a new iMac. I, for one, certainly would not purchase one again.

    It appears in an attempt of profits, market-share, and profit margin, Apple quality is going down as they increasingly source cheaper and poorer quality parts from various suppliers.

    I'll continue to use my current Apple products but in the future, I will seriously reconsider before purchasing another.

    Attached is my iMac plugged into the display confirming my LCD is bad. The logo/graphic you see is actually a reflection of the wall at the iMac store. See the lines on the screen? Even the technician agreed it shouldn't have went out that fast. He was nice and asked the store manager to consider covering the repair. Manager was nice but denied it.

  4. matreya macrumors 65816


    Nov 14, 2009
    What's sad is that you didn't see the value of AppleCare...
  5. indigosixalpha thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 8, 2015
    First Apple computer. Many of my friends have iMacs for 7+ years without a problem so I figure they would last long. Certainly longer than two years.
  6. matreya macrumors 65816


    Nov 14, 2009
    Well, of course they should last longer than 2 years. I had a Mac Pro (that I've subsequently given to a friend) that's 8 years old and still runs Lion perfectly.

    If you were in Australia, our consumer laws ensure that Apple can't just refuse you if your Mac has failed before a statutory warranty period of 24 months
  7. aliensporebomb macrumors 68000


    Jun 19, 2005
    Minneapolis, MN, USA, Urth
    Always always always buy AppleCare. It pays for itself. Sorry you experienced that. Wow. LCD failure. Haven't seen that happen in any of my friends or associates machine but I've heard it can happen.
  8. xgman macrumors 601


    Aug 6, 2007
    These 2012-13 models are very prone to severe image retention issues that start showing up after the first year or two although I think it depends on which lcd panel is in your unit.
  9. indigosixalpha thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 8, 2015
    Took it apart last night. Removing the LCD was easy. I had it off in under a couple minutes using a guitar pick. Just slide it around the perimiter. There's no danger of hitting anything inside. This includes the camera. Just slide it right around. Tilt the screen down and cut the glue on the bottom of the screen from the inside. Careful not to tilt too far down because there's two ribbon cables.

    I confirmed the screen is an LG LM270WQ1 (SD) (F2) This is the model number for all 2013 iMacs. The 2012 use the F1 variation as far as I can see.

    Replacement screen is roughly $500 on eBay from many different sellers.

    Before going that route, I am going to try and fix the screen myself. Nothing to lose, right?

    I have a feeling it's a loose connection and not an inherent fault in the screen itself; the processing, boards, etc. The problem first occurred for a few seconds then it went back to normal. Then next time I used the computer, the problem came back and never went away. Maybe I'll take a heat gun to the board of the LCD if I can't locate any fault with the wiring.

    I've read similar problems with older LG displays where a wire simply came loose inside the iMac. Poor quality control at LG and poor oversight on Apple's part of design/specs of this screen. How a masterful hardware builder missed such a simple thing blows my mind.

    This LG display is also used by HP all-in-ones but in a slightly thicker variation and I've read about similar problems with them too. Variations of this 27" screen is actually widespread and used by many different manufacturers in slightly different designs.
  10. indigosixalpha thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 8, 2015
    From now on, I will purchase Apple Care. Still though, my confidence in Apple products has gone down. If all Apple would do is replace it with yet another LG display, then I wouldn't have confidence in the product. When you buy an Apple product, you buy it because there's a perception of extremely high end quality and product longevity and reliability. That was the entire reason I bought this iMac switching over from my years building PCs. I wanted something that was beautiful and lasts. That era of Apple seems to be in the past. Apple seems to award contracts to the cheapest suppliers without total regard to quality.
  11. ddkkpp macrumors 6502


    May 28, 2011
    We have a 2008-2009 iMac that just went kaput as well - the LCD screen doesn't turn on anymore. Took it to the Apple store, and they don't even repair that model anymore. Basically we're out of luck. Need to find a used screen and replace it ourselves through a 3rd party or on our own. Really sucks, as all the macs we previously owned lasted 10 years without issue. That is why we keep buying them... because we have trust in their quality and service, but this experience has left me a little disillusioned.
  12. dierussianhackers, Apr 10, 2017
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2017

    dierussianhackers macrumors newbie

    Apr 10, 2017
    I agree with Indigo about Apple quality. My 2013 27" iMac (purchased March 2014) had the very same screen problems. Thankfully I didn't purchase Apple Care as my computer would have been one month past the warranty period for this coverage. I took it to Apple Store repair and for $580 they replaced my display panel which they warranty for a whole 90 days. I've also had a battery go out prematurely on a iPad 3. So I have resolved never to buy a new product from Apple. I will take my chances with a refurbished unit from Apple or third-party vendor.
  13. Rivtowi macrumors newbie

    Dec 18, 2017
    How does this problem solved ??
  14. majakazazic macrumors newbie

    I saw value of the apple care and bought it. But after my Apple Care expired I got the exact same issue.
    What’s sad is that you think we should spend thousands of dollars on high quality product and expect it to break.
  15. matreya macrumors 65816


    Nov 14, 2009
    Nope, I have the exact same iMac sitting in another room, which I bought 5 years ago, and it's still running perfectly. What you had sunshine, is bad luck.
  16. mikehalloran macrumors 6502

    Oct 14, 2018
    The Sillie Con Valley
    5 years later?
    A qualified tech can test it and replace the screen or other components as needed. eBay is a great source for used but serviceable components. The 2013–2014 iMacs are identical in this regard.

    The normal culprit is the heat caused by the HDD. Not saying it can't happen in an SSD only iMac—only that I've never seen it in any of my school clients. I normally replace the spinners during the summer between the 3–5 year mark for these to make them last a few years longer. Now that SSD prices are so low, it's almost a no-brainer (except that I'm talking about School Boards). Schools generally buy the base models.
  17. harriska2 macrumors 6502


    Mar 16, 2011
    Welcome to my world. Same imac, same 2013 year. Exactly 3 yrs and 1 month later the lcd (yeah, it was lg) failed in exactly the same way. $500 for used no warranty lcd so I just bought a $50 used ASUS 27” with same resolution and have it in front. Looks like crap. Now I worry about buying new - Apple quality is no what it used to be, even with Apple care+, and the initial huge cost. We keep our computers for 5+ years. I don’t think Apple quality will last that long.

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