MacBook Pro GPU gave up the ghost. Advice?

AppleInLVX

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Jan 12, 2010
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So This morning I booted up my MBP 15" and was just about to open an email when the screen become completely pixelated and unusable. I bought the computer in Jan 2007, and it's been my primary machine since then. I took it into the shop here and the service guy said the computer wasn't worth fixing.

3.5 years old and not worth fixing?

Questions:

Is it really not worth fixing, or is this guy trying to make a sale?

Could this have been caused by using an external monitor for most of the time I had it? I usually plugged it into my 24" Samsung and used the laptop display as the secondary monitor.

Thanks for any thoughts.

m.
 

Mackilroy

macrumors 68040
Jun 29, 2006
3,621
84
It's rather old, and AFAIK you'd have to replace the entire motherboard to replace the GPU, which would probably cost more than it's worth.
 

Wolfpup

macrumors 68030
Sep 7, 2006
2,794
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Yeah, 2007 seems like a good run for a notebook anyway. Not worth spending money on something that old IMO.

Edit: oh, and no, it would have nothing to do with the external monitor.
 

AppleInLVX

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Jan 12, 2010
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It's rather old, and AFAIK you'd have to replace the entire motherboard to replace the GPU, which would probably cost more than it's worth.
That was the technician's argument as well. The thing that irks me is that part of the reason I bought a Mac (and a "pro") is because I expected to be getting higher quality build. I know that computers are out of date pretty much when they're released, but 3.5 years isn't THAT old. I'm sure many people here are typing away happily on machines far older than that.

Half a year out of Apple Care. Rats.
 

jbrenn

macrumors 6502a
Aug 27, 2008
638
0
Please elaborate. I don't know what the 8600GT is...
the 8600gt is the video card in macbook pros that were released starting in june of 2007 according to the buyers guide. These chips fail at a very high rate. But you said yours was purchased it jan of 07 so you would not have the 8600gt.
 

Wolfpup

macrumors 68030
Sep 7, 2006
2,794
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That was the technician's argument as well. The thing that irks me is that part of the reason I bought a Mac (and a "pro") is because I expected to be getting higher quality build. I know that computers are out of date pretty much when they're released, but 3.5 years isn't THAT old. I'm sure many people here are typing away happily on machines far older than that.

Half a year out of Apple Care. Rats.
Statistically Apple's middle of the road for reliability. Asus, Sony, and Toshiba are all higher. Notebooks as a category are pretty unreliable though, so IMO you're doing pretty well if you get 3.5 years out of one.
 

AppleInLVX

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Jan 12, 2010
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the 8600gt is the video card in macbook pros that were released starting in june of 2007 according to the buyers guide. These chips fail at a very high rate. But you said yours was purchased it jan of 07 so you would not have the 8600gt.
Yes, that's right. It's a late 2006 model. Pretty sure it's a 128meg ATI GPU in there.

Statistically Apple's middle of the road for reliability. Asus, Sony, and Toshiba are all higher. Notebooks as a category are pretty unreliable though, so IMO you're doing pretty well if you get 3.5 years out of one.
That's sorta disconcerting. I still have an old IBM Thinkpad from over a decade ago and it still boots, not that one can do much with it. I thought MacBooks were built on par. Huh. I guess they don't make 'em like they used to.

Good thing I just ordered a 27" iMac to replace it. As I understand they have discreet graphics chips for the next time something goes wrong. Although I suppose I should expect this one to only last about as long. :rolleyes:

Thank you for the thoughts, everyone. I appreciate it.
 

Wolfpup

macrumors 68030
Sep 7, 2006
2,794
76
Yes, that's right. It's a late 2006 model. Pretty sure it's a 128meg ATI GPU in there.



That's sorta disconcerting. I still have an old IBM Thinkpad from over a decade ago and it still boots, not that one can do much with it. I thought MacBooks were built on par. Huh. I guess they don't make 'em like they used to.

Good thing I just ordered a 27" iMac to replace it. As I understand they have discreet graphics chips for the next time something goes wrong. Although I suppose I should expect this one to only last about as long. :rolleyes:

Thank you for the thoughts, everyone. I appreciate it.
Well, of course IBM sold their PC unit to that Chinese company, Lenovo, and they're currently ranked dead last for reliability. Apple's at least been middle of the pack consistently-I don't know that Lenovo's ever had less than a 20% failure rate.

Apple's desktops rate really well for reliability, but personally I would NEVER buy or recommend an iMac, as the hard drive isn't user accessible. Need warranty service, and they've got your personal info. Unacceptable IMO

In fact I have a friend who had to just junk her broken iMac and buy a MacBook Pro because of the hard drive issue.

It's too bad the Mac Pro doesn't go for $1000 less, because it's the exact opposite design philosophy.
 

AppleInLVX

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Jan 12, 2010
1,102
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Apple's desktops rate really well for reliability, but personally I would NEVER buy or recommend an iMac, as the hard drive isn't user accessible. Need warranty service, and they've got your personal info. Unacceptable IMO

In fact I have a friend who had to just junk her broken iMac and buy a MacBook Pro because of the hard drive issue.
I wrestled with that. One of my friends argued that if the screen goes, you lose the whole computer while it's fixed. I guess that's the trouble with all-in-one machines. As you've said, notebooks have their own issues. It's a no-win situation. Computers are like cars--outdated as soon as you buy them, and anything but an investment.

As far as HDD issues go, I live by my external drives (I sorta had to given the drive in the now dearly departed MBP, even if it was totally empty, couldn't hold my entire Aperture library). The only things stored locally are the applications and any 'working' files like Logic projects underway because I think the access speeds are faster. That said, in all the time I've used computers, which is since the bleedin' early 80s, I have yet to have a drive fail completely on me. Maybe luck, I dunno.
 

Wolfpup

macrumors 68030
Sep 7, 2006
2,794
76
I'm still not a fan of all in one desktops either way, but wha really gets me' with the iMac is that sealed drive. It needs to be user accessible before I could recommend one. :-(

Thankfully all their notebooks-except the Air-are user accessible now! (and IMO the Air just makes almost no sense versus a 13" regular model that's not much bigger, cheaper, and higher end, so that I don mind so much).
 

AppleInLVX

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Jan 12, 2010
1,102
527
I'm still not a fan of all in one desktops either way, but wha really gets me' with the iMac is that sealed drive. It needs to be user accessible before I could recommend one. :-(

Thankfully all their notebooks-except the Air-are user accessible now! (and IMO the Air just makes almost no sense versus a 13" regular model that's not much bigger, cheaper, and higher end, so that I don mind so much).
I completely agree that having parts that aren't user-accessible has its down side. I used to build computers for my pocket change when I was a teen, but these days I don't tinker at all anymore. I leave it to the pros. More inconvenient, but at least I can be reasonably sure it's done right. This issue would have bugged me more in the days where I had more time than money. :)

As for the MBA, I'm totally with you. I don't understand that thing either.
 

dallas112678

macrumors 6502a
Feb 17, 2008
802
526
That was the technician's argument as well. The thing that irks me is that part of the reason I bought a Mac (and a "pro") is because I expected to be getting higher quality build. I know that computers are out of date pretty much when they're released, but 3.5 years isn't THAT old. I'm sure many people here are typing away happily on machines far older than that.

Half a year out of Apple Care. Rats.
Well 3.5 years is considered old as far as any computer goes with the rate that technology increases. Yes Macbook Pro's have excellent build quality but they are still run by 3rd party parts that have a chance of failing. Just the way it goes with computers, no matter who the primary manufacturer is.
 
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