macbook newbie... an annoying experience

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by garyd9, Jul 30, 2008.

  1. garyd9 macrumors member

    Jul 30, 2008
    Pittsburgh, PA area
    I recently decided that I needed to buy a Mac machine.... as a programmer, osx is one of the few platforms I don't have experience with, and learning new platforms has always been a fun experience for me...

    So, I ran out to Best Buy to purchase the "mid-level" white macbook. The only reason I chose BB was that they are offering a 2 year no interest deal (which is about the only type of discount possible with apple products...)

    After about 8 days with this notebook, I noticed two "problems." First was that if I had a DVD or CD in the drive, and even very slowly tilted the notebook, there would be a sound similar to fingernails on a chalkboard (and the disc would get a deep scratch.) Secondly, I found that the airport card was getting EXTREMELY hot. iStat Pro was reporting temps over 80c when the card was being used (5Ghz 802.11n connection with an airport express.) And so the adventure began...

    I brought this macbook back to BB for a simple exchange. Only a slight hassle while their "geek squad" tried to verify the defects without destroying a CD/DVD and no 5Ghz network available. Got the replacement unit, and went home. That evening, I open the box, and immediately notice that the right side of the notebook (near the DVD drive) is warped out. As well, the piece of plastic (palm rest?) attached to the bottom is separated from the base on the notebook on the entire right side and right half of the front. At least this DVD drive didn't eat discs. ;)

    Next morning, back to BB for another exchange. This time, I decide I'll open the box right on the spot to save myself the long drive to/from BB for defective notebooks. So, no hassle with this exchange (it's pretty obvious that the right side is warped) and as soon as they give me the new box, I cut it open... and see the bezel separation exactly as with the previous notebook. Without waking away from the returns counter, I show the BB employee the same flaw...

    At this point, I get a manager, as well as some apple specialist in this store involved. They only have one more of the mid-level macbooks in stock. Instead of processing yet another exchange, they get this last macbook and spend about 30 minutes opening the box without cutting the box seals (actually easy to do.) Their last notebook has the same bezel issues. Great... (a point of amusement here is that they put that last notebook back in the box, resealed it, and put it back in their 'new' product lockup...)

    Having expended the entire stock of mid-level notebooks at this BB, I head down to the next closest BB that has stock of macbooks. I think its pretty obvious what I found after the first exchange at THAT store. At this point, I'm convinced that Apple's QC has gone completely to hell. 4 defective notebooks in a row?!

    To wrap up this tale, I finally decided to try different models to see if it was possible to get a macbook that wasn't falling apart out of the box. The second blackbook I opened finally was defect free (as far as I can tell.) I'm not happy that I had to pay an extra $200(US) for only an extra 90 GB of HDD space, but it seemed to be the price of a properly assembled notebook.

    Now I get to play with this new toy...
  2. Peace macrumors Core


    Apr 1, 2005
    Space--The ONLY Frontier
    I'm sure there are Apple stores in Pittsburgh.;)
  3. John Doe 57 macrumors 65816

    John Doe 57

    Jan 26, 2008
    Los Angeles, CA
    That is a great story! I can only imagine how pissed off you must have been after 4 defects not to mention the extra $200 spent!
  4. garyd9 thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 30, 2008
    Pittsburgh, PA area
    There are two. Both are at least an hour from me (and I wouldn't have bought the macbook without the 2 year no interest deal.) Don't get me wrong - I like the macbook and I don't regret getting it. I'm just very surprised that apple's quality control is so bad. I'd expect this type of issue with a $599 dell - not with a $1299 apple.
  5. agentphish macrumors 65816


    Sep 7, 2004
    I've been saying their QC sucks for some time now. My powerbook from 2004 is the most solid machine I've ever owned...My cousin's Macbook was sent to apple and basically refurbished completely without us asking (the HDD was bad, that's why it was sent in) because they knew it sucked and they had bad QC and bad assembly/materials when the Macbooks came out...

    Top Case, Bottom Case, Keyboard, TrackPad, HDD, Heatsink, Logic Board, Thermal Paste, all replaced.

    Apparently that's no different now.
  6. Neil321 macrumors 68040


    Nov 6, 2007
    Britain, Avatar Created By Bartelby
    Unfortunately price isn't always a guarantee of quality these days , one of my mates dad just bought a £45.000 BMW and that had to be re-called because of defects,he was gutted to say the least

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