MBP Display Issues - Logic Board?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by brynsank, Dec 31, 2008.

  1. brynsank macrumors newbie

    Dec 31, 2008
    Judging from the threads I've been looking through, I think this might be a logic board problem, although I can't be sure. My display look like this:


    This happened about a month after replacing my OEM 80gb hard drive with a hitachi 320gb, after which I installed Windows Vista using boot camp. In an attempt to fix the problem, I have reformatted the hard drive multiple times to no avail - even when I boot from another disk the same display problem presists. The perplexing thing is that there is one sure-fire way of temporarily fixing the problem. First I boot up in Windows - the display is screwy as normal. Then I run a windows defender scan and reboot in either OSX or Windows and the display is fine. However if I reboot the computer the display goes screwy again and I have to repeat the afore-mentioned process. This happens every time without fail, and I've been doing this for over 2 months now. I haven't found one single other way to give the computer the jump-start it needs to boot up with a right display.

    I find this problem bizarre because although it seems to be a hardware issue (given the fact that the problem persists in the absence of software), running a software scan in windows somehow causes the computer to come to its senses long enough for me to boot the computer with a right display. Once the display is right it stays right until the computer is rebooted.

    Is it possible that this is a firmware problem relating to the logic board or graphics card? Or is it likely that I am going to have to replace the logic board? As a sidenote an external display works fine - the problem is only with the MBP display.

    Hopefully I've made my problem clear. All comments are much appreciated!
  2. jackiecanev2 macrumors 65816


    Jul 6, 2007
    Are you close to an apple store? It can't hurt to see if its the Nvidia graphics card thats dying... applecare will extend the warranty to replace the board even if your applecare has expired if it is indeed the graphics card. But the fact that it can be temporarily fixed during rebooting... :confused:
  3. brynsank thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 31, 2008
    Thanks for your reply. I am able to get to an apple store, although it's certainly not close... :) I guess it's really the only sure-fire way of figuring out what's going on.
  4. lefse macrumors member

    Jul 11, 2008
    Try holding down ctrl+alt+cmd+8

    That's the screen inverter... looks like your display's gone negative - it may be a simple fix like that..
  5. kastenbrust macrumors 68030


    Dec 26, 2008
    North Korea
    If ctrl+alt+cmd+8 then its a broken graphics card, definately not the logic board, however the logic board would need replacing if the graphics card is broken because in the MBP's the graphics card is soldiered to the motherboard :(

  6. Emerica macrumors member

    Jun 25, 2006
    I heard that replacing your hard drive voids your warranty... So if you did go to an Apple store and they saw that you had a different hard drive in there, they might not honor your warranty/Apple Care.
  7. kastenbrust macrumors 68030


    Dec 26, 2008
    North Korea
    Just to clear things up, upgrading your RAM DOES NOT void your warranty too.
  8. Mercellus macrumors regular

    Nov 4, 2008
    Actually, in the new MacBook Pro (Late 2008), upgrading your hard drive is as easy as removing the battery cover and a few screws, and does not void the warranty.

    However, previous models of the MacBook Pro are considered to have one "user serviceable" part, and that is the RAM. Any other modifications will void the warranty, including upgrading the hard drive (although most Geniuses at the Genius Bars will turn a blind eye to this). This is due to the fact that in order to access the hard drive, you have to remove the entire top case assembly, which can be very tricky.
  9. Hot Snowboarder macrumors 6502

    Jan 2, 2009
    Behind you...!
    When the logic board died in my Early 2008 MBP the screen went all pixelated. Like in BIG blocks. It booted up with the apple logo all fine, but as soon as log in screen appeared, it became a horrible mess of big coloured squares.

    Did the same thing on external display. Broke my heart :p hahaha.

    Yeah take it into the apple store, I hope its not a logic board. Apple should pay for everything but its inconvenient losing your laptop for 1-3 days.
  10. UltraNEO* macrumors 601


    Jun 16, 2007

    Wrong again...

    Regarding older Santa Rosa MacBookPro's.
    Any parts the USER changes out will not be covered by the Apple Warranty (and why should they?). If later, the system fails due to a part you've changed. Then Yes, your warranty is VOIDED however, in general it doesn't void the warranty!
  11. Emerica macrumors member

    Jun 25, 2006
    Thanks for the correction. I was misinformed because almost every site I went to about upgrading MB and MBP hard drives said that it would void the warranty.
  12. alphaod macrumors Core


    Feb 9, 2008
    Yeah I've talk to Apple many times and sent in my computer a number of times with components upgraded and my warranty was valid every time.
  13. darwinian macrumors 6502a


    Jan 4, 2008
    In R4, more or less
    brynsank, I wouldn't be eager to tell them you've been inside, however, even if just to change a HDD. Despite what all of these posts above say regarding hard drive replacement on the now "classic" MBPs, I have had an Apple service guy tell me that they would not have accepted my very own 3,1 for service had he known ahead of time I had replaced my HDD myself. The issue (dead laptop) was not at all related to the HDD and did not in any way coincide with my installation. I didn't argue with him about it (he was fixing my machine outside warranty for free anyhow).

    Anyway, I certainly *think* that the HDD replacement should be a user installable part and used to completely agree that it was, until a couple of months ago when the above occurred.
  14. brynsank thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 31, 2008
    Thanks for all your posts. Unfortunately the problem was not a simple screen inversion.
    I am still completely perplexed though that I can temporarily fix this problem using a simple software scan. Would that not suggest that the problem is not hardware related?
  15. brynsank thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 31, 2008

    Thankyou everybody for your input. To bring some closure to this, I thought I'd let you know that I was able to get to a mac store and they replaced the logic board under warranty, despite the fact that I had replaced the hard drive.
    I specifically asked of the fact that I had replaced the hard drive would void the warranty, and they told me that it would have no effect UNLESS there was evidence of user damage on the logic board which could be linked to the cause of the display problem. No such damage was present so they were happy to replace it under warranty.
  16. brynsank thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 31, 2008
    solution cont'd

    I should also mention that the replacement of the logic board seems to have completely fixed the problem. The guy at the mac store said it was related to a failing video card.

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