MPB 2011- Gray & Green Screens- Repair or Replace?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Brinkley152, Jul 23, 2017.

  1. Brinkley152 macrumors newbie

    Jul 23, 2017
    Hi all,

    Would really appreciate your help and advice on this issue I have encountered:

    I have a late 2011 15in. MacBook Pro (2.2 GHz Intel Core i7/ 500GB SATA HD/ 4GB Memory).

    3 Months ago, parts of my screen started turning an alien green color. When this first came up, I ran a virus scan and Malware scan- both came up clean. This issue would happen fairly frequently, but no other issues were observed. Drive SMART status was still fine. Green color would not show up in screen grabs.

    Earlier this week, I powered on the MBP and got stuck on a gray screen. After numerous attempts of powering down and restarting, I could get no further. I read that restarting with the shift key pressed would start into safe mode, so I tried that. After the initial grey screen with the Apple logo showed up, the whole screen turned black with vertical blue lines.

    I called Apple and they had me try to restart with numerous key combinations pressed. Nothing was working. At one point, the MPB shut itself down after stalling at the gray screen yet again. When I turned it back on, the machine started up like normal, is if nothing had been wrong. I had been running Lion. Apple had me upgrade to Sierra to eliminate any software issues.

    Unfortunately, the issue has persisted with Sierra. I am still running into the issue with parts of my screen turning green. Now, at random times, the entire screen will turn the bright green color and needs to be restarted. Restarting is very unstable. Currently, I am unable to get past the gray screen again. Additionally, the green color now shows up on the login screen, where before it only came up once I was logged in.

    Apple phone support said perhaps it is the motherboard or graphics card. They also said the Mac Stores no longer support this model and my only other help would be an Authorized Apple store. This is a bit of a trek- is it worth taking this in and trying to have it repaired, or is it time for a new machine? My previous machine (Powerbook G4) lasted me 8 years. I purchased this one in January 2012, and would really like to get more than 5.5 years out of it. However, I don't want to sink money into a lost cause.

    Thanks in advance for any and all ideas and advice.
  2. ZapNZs macrumors 68020


    Jan 23, 2017
    Replace. This model is notorious for GPU failures, and it is because of a design flaw on behalf of Apple. Apple never modified the logic board design enough to make any difference (if at all) and replacement 2011 logic boards have the same design flaw.
  3. iMacC2D, Jul 24, 2017
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2017
  4. pixelatedscraps macrumors 6502


    Jul 11, 2017
    Hong Kong
    Definitely sounds like the GPU / logic board failing. As others have mentioned, it's not worth sinking money into getting this repaired. My girlfriend paid about $700 to get her early 2011 17" MacBook Pro repaired about a year ago (before we knew better) and I'm just dreading the day we start seeing graphical corruptions again.

    There was a thread floating around about switching from the discrete GPU (causing the problems) to the onboard GPU which may or may not be of help to you. I guess it depends on how much has 'melted'?
  5. Brinkley152 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 23, 2017
    Thanks so much for your responses. Certainly looks like a replacement is in order.

    For the past few days I have been looking around at what's out there for a replacement. I have been out of the marketplace for a while and was shocked to see that a Superdrive, Ethernet port, USB ports, and matte screens are no longer options. Yikes, this was disappointing news! I regularly use all of these.

    I have been looking at the 2015 model given that it still has some USB ports. I was also wondering about refurbished or used machines. What has been a reliable build? I see around the forum that the 2013/2014 models are often spoken very highly of. Don't have the experience to make any modifications, so would be at the mercy of whatever is available.

    Looking for something that's going to last me a number of years- at least 5. Need the 512 gb hard drive. Thinking I should go with the 16 gb RAM. Have always used a 15 inch, but considering the 13 inch model as well.

    Appreciate any tips or advice. Thanks again.
  6. rjc123 macrumors newbie

    Jul 25, 2017

    I just bought a brand new mid 2012 macbook pro 13in a few months ago. I spilled some tea on the keyboard less than a week later and fried the logic board. Everything else is still in perfect condition and I ended up taking out all the parts except the broken logic board and putting it into my old macbook pro that had a working logic board, but broken hard drive. The newer macbook I bought has just been sitting in my closet. The monitor is still in perfect brand new condition if you'd like it. It's been gathering dust so I'd happily give it away if it would be a suitable replacement for your macbook model.
  7. Brinkley152 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 23, 2017
    Wow- thank you so much for that incredibly kind and generous offer. I had been checking out Apple's refurbished page and today the model I had been hoping for became available for a reasonable (by Apple standards) price so I took the plunge! But thank you again for your offer and to everyone for their advice! It is very much appreciated!

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