My Ride With The Macbook AIR REV A

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by Rondue, Feb 4, 2009.

  1. Rondue macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2008
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    PA
    #1
    This is a write up of the events I have experienced with apple care and my macbook air that is still under the 1 Year apple care policy. I may use this and send it to customer service to see what they say about it but so far it appears that they are willing to take care of me. Tell me what you guys think about my roller coaster ride so far.




    This is the story of my 1.6GHz Rev A macbook air going to repair. On DEC 18th I called in to apple care and explained everything that was wrong with my macbook air (GFX issues, and the touch pad button leaves a mark on the LCD bezel which I figured they wouldn't cover but it wasn't a big deal just a small mark). First I will start by saying the type of computer user I am, I know this is a very light notebook in fact I treat it like a net-book really and just use it for light internet browsing email/and note taking for my job. I baby it of course because it is my baby for the most part. Not any scratches or nicks in it at all.

    They sent a box out to me with amazing speed but, things at work picked up immaculately so I could not depart with it at the moment since the problems I experienced only happened when I was doing non work stuff like sitting at home watching videos I didn’t need to have it fixed right away. I took personal time and drove one and a half hours to the nearest apple store which was located in Crocker park West Lake Ohio. I got to the genius bar and a gentlemen there who appeared to be in a bad mood the minute he walked into the building started asking me what the problem was. I explained that my air seems to be experiencing random video issues related to heat in most instances. I then got a little more detailed and explained that when watching HD video after about 30-40 minutes with just the video application launched (VLC player Quicktime), the video will start skipping stuttering and glitch before it starts to then affect the entire system. So he starts by opening a terminal prompt and started a Y or yes loop and then plays the chess video, he then starts going through my logs which only spanned back a few days and only showed me connecting to numerous Wifi access points. He seems to nod his head and go everything seems normal and I go play an HD video from apples page. He goes and starts downloading a video and plays it for about 4-5 minutes then starts to close quicktime. At that moment it starts to lock up and freeze and I go is there a problem. He looks confused as the system completely locks up and doesn't allow access to the programs. He force quits quicktime and the other applications start lagging and finally after the video stopped playing for about a minute or so the system starts to give him access again. So he goes well it appears to have some graphics issues we can just send it out for repairs. At that moment I asked him if he could add notes to the service ID about what he had experienced with the unit, he said yes he already did (I think he just said that to get me out of the store). I explained that there was a box that was sent to me by apple and he advised me to send it out with that. So after a day I get a call from an apple care guy saying that the LCD bezel that had the mark would need to be replaced and quoted me 450 dollars for just the little metal piece which I said no just fix the graphics piece and then he goes okay so don’t do the repair?And I say no not to the aluminum bezel its not a big deal. And I go the graphics issue will be fixed right? And he says yes they will repair that and get it back in the mail for you and i go okay thank you for calling.


    Today I get the box back and a note saying that the repair was not done at my request I immediately call apple care and get a woman and explain the situation. She places me on hold to find out more information after a few minutes she returns saying that you told them not to repair the issue, i then rebuttal and say I told them not to do the non warranty repair and I made sure that the graphics issue was fixed before he hung up which he assured me would be taken care of, and now you are telling me this is not The case? She then goes they will not do a partial repair and they would have to either do all of them or none of them. I ask her how that even makes sense that I have to get it back then send it out explaining just the one issue for them to repair it. Then she starts getting upset and speaks louder over me so I cant say anything. She then says that the bent bezel piece is hitting the LCD causing my graphics issue I am not laughing at her on the phone and she seems to get even more upset. And I then say so which is it the process is strange or you are voiding my warranty? Then she starts to say what she just said to me again and I have to raise my voice to stop her from talking and go can you please answer my question without reading off of a screen or piece of paper? She then tries to get me off the line by saying there was nothing more she could do and I then asked to speak to a supervisor which seemed to upset her even more. After about 10 minutes on hold I then was able to speak to a supervisor who was calm and let me speak my mind on the problems I had. After explaining my frustrations with my apple care experience thus far he seems to agree with me as far as that mark from the touch screen button and felt it was a reach as far as voiding ones warranty. He then said he would take care of me and resolve the issue. He created a new repair ID number for me and we chatted a while longer about repair issues and customer service, it was good conversation and he made me feel like a valued customer instead of just trying to get me to shut up or get me off the phone. He had taken down my information and explained to me that they would replace all of those things Top case key board and LCD bezel as well as look into the graphics issue, I was very shocked because all i was expecting was for them to just look at the gfx issue. I sent out the box with the macbook air with fedex to TX so we will see how everything goes and update this tread.
     
  2. tubbymac macrumors 65816

    tubbymac

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2008
    #2
    I had to force myself not to go cross eyed reading your post. Those paragraphs are like massive walls of text :)

    The genius sounds like an absolute moron and the lady you spoke to sounds like she was on PMS. Thank goodness the supervisor you talked to seemed like a reasonable, rational human being. I hope he sticks to his word and gets your issues resolved. I'd love to hear how it ends.
     
  3. SFStateStudent macrumors 604

    SFStateStudent

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2007
    Location:
    San Francisco California, USA
    #3
    +1 ^^^ I'm jumping on that paragraph bandwagon; it's just a difficult read for me, but I got through your post.

    The mark on the LCD screen that just happens to line-up with the trackpad button is a pretty common "cosmetic flaw" as AppleCare describes it 24/7. I had it on a MB August 2007, and it was less than two weeks old when I brought it to their attention.

    They said it didn't affect the overall operation of the MB, so they wouldn't fix it for free. I asked how much and they said $700! I explained that it was just about two weeks old and the price of my MB is less by $700 if I wanted to sell it right now? Long story short, they replaced my MB (6 months later) with a new BlackBook Penryn within 24 hours after I notified Customer Relations, that I was not satisfied that my issue was resolved and they made it right with the store manager at the local Apple Store...:cool:
     
  4. rhyx macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2008
    #4
    Good luck. Sounds like the second person is trying to make it right.
     
  5. NewGenAdam macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2008
    #5
    So I read it. Sounds like your experience has been pretty bad in parts, but you got a sensible guy in the end. I can't help but pity the first customer service person you got, getting all upset - unproffesional, but stil =(!
    Hope you get a sparkly, working MBA. Trust me when I say I FULLY understand the annoyance of the air lagging after youtube, etc...
     
  6. Rondue thread starter macrumors regular

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    Jul 30, 2008
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    PA
    #6
    Looks like its in for repair so... maybe I get it back in the morning. Regardless of what happens when I get it back what is the best way to share my experience with apple customer service? Does anyone have an email address or direct line to that portion of apple care?
     
  7. ExcelonGT macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    #7
    I'm not understanding whats so hard about reading three paragraphs that are written with proper english and punctuation. I'm subscribing to this thread...


     
  8. yoppie macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2007
    #8
    Initially they were not broken up into paragraphs. It was all one big block.
     
  9. Rondue thread starter macrumors regular

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    #9
    Ok so I get it back, open the box up and pull out the repair sheet they sent with the unit and it lists

    Bezel replaced - enclosure - Mechanical / Cosmetic Damaged
    Top Case - Enclosure - Mechanical / Cosmetic Damaged
    Logic board - Video Distortion



    I open the laptops lid and right off the bat i noticed the button is now seated lower than it was when I bought it (originally the touchpad button sat almost double what it is now high which is why it left that black mark on the LCD bezel). The power button is sitting up higher than it was before service. Its actually flush with the top case, previous to this it sat probably sat a 4th of a centimeter lower than the case. I am currently testing video if any of you guys have any video links i can try I would love for you guys to post them.

    Now my question to apple is why the heck would they attempt at saying it wasn't covered due to physical damage on my part when it was shipped to me with a higher than normal touch button which caused a tiny dent in my bezel which did not push against the LCD screen like they had said. Even though this has absolutely nothing to do with my graphics issue like they said it did (Complete cop out).
     
  10. Mr. Giver '94 macrumors 68000

    Mr. Giver '94

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2008
    Location:
    London
    #10
    Can you not take it to an Apple Store?? If what they sent you back isn't satisfactory, it seems like it would be easier to discuss the issues in person with someone. :)
     
  11. Rondue thread starter macrumors regular

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    #11
    Im just going over my experience. read the first post I've been to an apple store once. The closest one is an hour and a half away and I got absolutely nowhere.
     
  12. polyethyleneguy macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2005
    Location:
    Florida
    #12
    Let us know if the video problems/heat was fixed after you test it for a little.
    Thanks! :)
     
  13. Rondue thread starter macrumors regular

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    #13
    Well after testing last night The problem still exists when watching HD video. The new logic board helps out a ton as I can watch videos much longer, but 18 minutes into Heros HD it started to freeze. The only way I was able to finish it was to stop the video and let the laptop cool down, and then play the video in a smaller size window so no fullscreen. Normal videos play fine its just HD stuff. I dont know what to do should i pressure apple some more about it or what?
     
  14. polyethyleneguy macrumors member

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    Jan 7, 2005
    Location:
    Florida
    #14
    Have you tried using the coolbook program to undervolt the processor? This might reduce heat which could help the video playback.
     
  15. Scottsdale macrumors 601

    Scottsdale

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2008
    Location:
    U.S.A.
    #15
    I had an original MBA, what a piece of garbage. It's just not capable. There are too many bottlenecks in that computer. I know everyone wants to think they got a great deal because the rev A is now $999 and cost between $1799 and $3099 just eight months ago.

    The new MBA rev B is a fully functioning and capable machine. Until you upgrade to the new model, you are going to have problems... Good luck.
     
  16. SFStateStudent macrumors 604

    SFStateStudent

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    Aug 28, 2007
    Location:
    San Francisco California, USA
    #16
    I'm reading two upper division classes of 8-12 pages of essays 4-5 times a semester, for a total of about 450+ essays, so believe me, it's a difficult read for these old eyes; though excellent content. :eek: Matter of opinion... ;)

    Hey OP, I'm right there with you on all those issues. Especially interested in the damaged LCD bezel, and the supposed "cosmetic damage" which doesn't affect the overall performance of the MBAir. As I mentioned before, the value of the MBAir depreciates at the sign of any damage, whether cosmetic or non-cosmetic. If it's a manufacturing defect and common to all or many MBAir computers, then it's Apple's responsibility to make it right; if that means repair w/o charge or a replacement, then so be it...:mad:
     
  17. Rondue thread starter macrumors regular

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    #17
    I've been noticing a lot of people using this coolbook thing, but why the heck should I have to pay for an application to make my product I paid primo bucks for work correctly you know?

    Does that application void your warranty?
     
  18. gonzo1082 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2009
    #18
    i've been using it for a while and it works pretty nicely. i don't think it voids your warranty as it's just a software application that tweaks your cpu, you can disable it whenever you want. i bought the mba rev a refurb knowing HD video is pretty much impossible, but hulu std def shows are playable on full screen without any major lag, so im ok with that.

    aside from that it makes your notebook run a lot cooler and the fan barely kicks in, yeah i know its a bummer that you have to underclock your 1.6ghz processor but a lot of basic applications don't really need that much processing power. i actually have mine running at 600mhz lol, never gets hot.
     
  19. macboy4 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2009
    #19
    Great experience at apple store

    I too bought Rev A when they went on sale at Mac Mall. I wouldn't have spent $1800, but $1150 was really reasonable. I haven't really had any issues with core shutdown/stuttering during video, but the thing got REALLY hot. Sometimes it would get hot just doing menial tasks (Word and iTunes).

    On a whim I decided to go to the local Apple Store last week and ask for a Rev B replacement. I told the guy what was happening and he told me they would run diagnostics. I told him I was 99.9% sure there was nothing *wrong* with the computer, but that he and I both know that Rev A has design flaws. He actually acknowledged this fact. I asked him, "if the diagnostics come back negative, what are the chances of getting this replaced with a Rev B unit?" He said that would be a decision for the manager to make. Once he discovered that the unit was only 3 months old, he spoke with the manager. He came back, and, with a knowing look, said they had to run the diagnostics, but that if they came back negative we would discuss further options.

    A couple of hours later he called and told me that the computer was running hot and that the manager had decided to replace it. So basically, I went into the store, told the guy that nothing was actually wrong that specific computer and asked for another one. Shock of all shocks, they gave me one!
     
  20. Rondue thread starter macrumors regular

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    #20
    This **** angers me so much, sorry for the cusing but, Its so flippy floppy with apple man. You get some people who get owned and some people get treated like gold. I donno man im doing tests today and seeing if it screws up on me. Since ive been so busy with work and stuff.
     
  21. Rondue thread starter macrumors regular

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    #21
    calling apple care once more, gfx skipping has returned and the lcd bezel on the bottom right corner is coming away from the rubber right after its repair
     
  22. Rondue thread starter macrumors regular

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    #22
    Finally

    Ok guys here is my update: I got the macbook back from service after they repaired the the Bezel they didnt put on completely from the last service. They did say that they tested the video play back and nothing was wrong with the unit. The moment I got it back, the box was opened and the unit was powered on. Kernel panic!! before i panicked I powered it down and back on again and it booted appeared normal.

    The next day it kernel panicked randomly throughout the day I also noticed that from time to time the keyboard and touch pad would stop responding making it so that i had to use the power button to shut the unit off. I restored the machine just in case and the problem persisted.

    I called APL CARE and spoke with a gentlemen named Don who apologized and asked/wanted to repair it once more and said to me if I were to experience any issues in the future to call him and he would get the unit replaced. So after sending it back in the verdict was Bad HDD Bad logic board and a bad wifi adaptor.

    I receive the unit back from service and test it seemed alright but I was pretty busy with work to get into details with it. So after work slowed down a little i began to catch up with some TV episodes Heros 2 episodes I got through the a\first episode and began the 2nd and it started to artifact and the video started to chop up and skip. The next day I tried to watch 3 episodes of Life 1 Standard def and 2 Hi Def 720P. The end of the 2nd HD episode started to skip and slowed my computer down and then no video played smoothly so I shut the computer off and called APL CARE the next morning.

    Verdict is they are now going to replace it with the current gen 1.6GHz 120GB HD with nvidia chipset.
     
  23. jjahshik32 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2006
    #23
    I disagree, I had the 1.6GHz 80gb mba last year and I had no problems with it. I played youtube videos without stuttering or hd trailers without any problems either.

    I never understood the use of coolbook or any other tricks (never used any of those methods) and worked great.

    Only reason I returned it was that I wanted a macbook pro instead. But I do remember the fans revving up pretty loud.
     
  24. michael.lauden macrumors 68020

    michael.lauden

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    Dec 25, 2008
    #24
    mman what a bad experience.... but then again it's a Rev. A - i don't think i've heard anything good about those :(
     
  25. Rondue thread starter macrumors regular

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    #25
    I got it for a real good deal right after the whole core shutdown thing. Fortunately my AIR didn't fall victim to that. But watching video and HD trailers I experienced no issues, but when watching HD shows like one or two problems occurred so those of you who go oh well i have no issues with video. Buy some HD episodes from iTunes and watch like 3 back to back and then repost if you have problems or not. Out of 3 logic boards I had 1 of them allowed me to watch HD tv shows and that board ended up going bad on me lol
     

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