My third replacement 15" TB MBP is on the way. Hopefully this one won't rattle.

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Kenndac, Jan 16, 2017.

  1. Kenndac macrumors 6502


    Jun 28, 2003
    My first MBP rattled, so I asked for a replacement.

    My second MBP rattled, so I asked for a replacement.

    My third MBP rattled, so I asked why they couldn't send me a MBP that didn't rattle!

    Apple's Customer support is doing their best to make me happy — they really are — but poor quality control is hurting them like crazy. I even went to the Apple Store this past weekend to check out the ones on display, and a few of those rattled too.

    They're sending MacBook Pro #4 straight to the Apple Store, so if this one rattles too, they can immediately take it in for repair. Unfortunately, the consensus is that one particular rattle (in the screen assembly) is just a thing that you need to accept this this generation. However, I'm really not happy about spending such a huge amount of money for a rattling computer!

    I wrote more about my experience on my blog, if you're interested — it contains videos of all of the rattles.
  2. CE3 macrumors 65816

    Nov 26, 2014
    Just looked at the videos in your post. #1 and #3 might be cause for concern, but the rattle in #2 is definitely the display assembly - not really a defect or something to return over if it's present in #4.
  3. keysofanxiety, Jan 16, 2017
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2017

    keysofanxiety macrumors G3


    Nov 23, 2011
    Poor quality control...? It's a bit of a niche problem that doesn't affect the functionality of the machine. No other OEM would give you a replacement if you said that it makes noise when you shake their computer. Lenovo don't even cover dead pixels on a brand-new machine.

    Although I understand your frustration (I also shake things hoping they won't make noise, though that's enough said of my parenting), a lot of posters could use some perspective on how accomodating Apple are with these 'faults'.
  4. jerryk macrumors 601

    Nov 3, 2011
    SF Bay Area
    Rattle when sharking the unit, #2, is pretty common. It has been happening since the rMBP first appeared.
  5. Kenndac thread starter macrumors 6502


    Jun 28, 2003
    No other OEM would charge this much money for a laptop with these specs, either.

    Fortunately, Apple themselves agree that I shouldn't accept a rattle in a computer that cost so much money — they're willing to keep going until I have a rattle-free MacBook Pro. The issue is whether that's actually possible!
  6. keysofanxiety macrumors G3


    Nov 23, 2011
    Few other laptops have those specs in a 4 pound enclosure at 1.5cm thick... Razer Blade notwithstanding ;)

    I'm sure you'll eventually get a rattle-free MBP!
  7. WhiteWhaleHolyGrail macrumors 6502a


    Nov 14, 2016
    I have no such rattle - most don't in fact. So I'm sure your bad run will end.
  8. aevan, Jan 16, 2017
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2017

    aevan macrumors 68030


    Feb 5, 2015
    I have a crazy suggestion.... And, bear with me, because it's unconventional, to say the least. Some might call it unorthodox, controversial even. Taboo in certain cultures, for sure. But - it may help with your issue, so here goes:

    Maybe.... you know.... don't shake your laptops?

    Strange, I know, but not shaking laptops is said to prevent rattle caused by shaking in 99% of the cases, with the exception of earthquakes and train rides.

    P.S. This is meant to be a joke, but seriously, don't shake your laptops.
  9. idark77 macrumors 6502


    Dec 2, 2014
  10. Kenndac thread starter macrumors 6502


    Jun 28, 2003
    If you read my linked post, you'll see the noise I'm concerned about happens when you set the computer down on a table, or tap it on the palm rests — I even specifically mention that I don't shake my MacBook, so that particular rattle I could live with just fine. I do, however, set it down on a table quite frequently.

    But, I mean, y'know — if you're going to make a completely useless sarcastic post, you might as well not bother reading what you're replying to as well, to really sell the "I have know idea what I'm talking about" angle. ;)
  11. aevan macrumors 68030


    Feb 5, 2015

    I did read the post, I even read the blog post and checked out the videos, because I was curious.

    On video 1, I don't understand what's going on, I see you pounding on your MBP with your finger and there is noise. Yes, when you pound a metal object with your index finger, you can hear sounds. When you hit the area next to the trackpad I just hear a thump, and when you move on to the trackpad, I hear the Force trackpad clicking. Now, I can't tell if the sound I'm hearing is just the sound distortion when recorded, it may or may not sound a bit "metalic" and rattly, but I can't tell from the video if this is normal or not, so I'll have to take your word for it.

    Then again, you are a guy who goes around an Apple store shaking computers - so I don't know what to think. Do you know how that looks to me? Anyway, my sarcastic comments were directed at the video 2 - do you really care if there is noise when you shake your computer like that? I don't get it.

    I'm sorry if I got you upset or anything, I made a joke and I apologize. Getting 3 computers with the same issue, I don't know, to me that sounds like the issue is not in the computers - so I'll leave this thread. Good luck with your MacBooks.
  12. danniexi macrumors 6502

    Jan 7, 2012
    sounds like an issue with the force touch trackpad (due to the location of where you are hitting it). every time you hit that area around the trackpad it sounds like the motor is moving. it's kind of ridiculous that you had to replace your laptop three times due to these issues, since although they might not be a big deal to some, these problems should NOT be happening on the laptops and you have every right to exchange them for a new one that has a clean bill of health.

    I purchased mine in store and i haven't had a single issue. That very fact seems to show that there is a lot of QC issues with Apple. I can only assume that they are selling a lot of them and the factories are churning them out as fast as they can in the expense of build quality and reliability.
  13. hawkeye_a macrumors 65816


    Jun 27, 2016
  14. dyn macrumors 68030

    Aug 8, 2009
    There are some issues with the videos which actually make them unusable:
    1) any of the aluminium notebooks (not just from Apple) will make that sound. The fact that you are tapping partly on the bezel around the trackpad and partly on the trackpad itself makes it trigger the trackpad which you can hear by the clicking sound it makes.
    2) you are wearing a ring and there is no way of telling if your ring is causing the sound or not. I've tried to mimic it and it even rattles in my hands until I grasped it more tightly and watched how I was holding it. When I did that, there wasn't any noise.
    3) there is a security cable attached to it and you are shaking it off camera so there is no way of telling if it it is the security cable/connector that is causing the rattling.
    4) see nr 1; also, this can be caused by the MBP not sitting level on the table. This can be caused by the table, the bottom plate or the feet on the MBP.

    There simply are too many other things that can cause the rattling and that is why the videos are unusable. They don't really proof anything. There are some people who have slowly tilted the MBP from left to right and vice versa. Do things like that, eliminate as much as other causes too and then create the video. That way you have far better proof for Apple to show the issue. Makes it a lot easier for them to troubleshoot and thus solve the issue (if there is any).

    Other question that are important and need answering: do non-2016 MBP and even non-Apple notebooks do this (or in other words, is this to be expected from a (Apple) notebook?)?
  15. AndrewR23 macrumors 68040

    Jun 24, 2010
    The rattle is number 2 is exactly like my 2012 rMBP and 2015 rMBP. Its normal.
  16. dapork macrumors regular


    Nov 1, 2016
    Now I'm concerned about something I would never notice cause I would never even think to shake my laptop or compulsively tap it like that with my finger. Now thanks to you I'm gonna do it when it arrives and be concerned about something I never even would have known existed...

    It's like taking acid and watching reality unravel. Just don't take acid and you can be happy within the ordinary confines of your reality. And I don't mean ignorance is bliss. Everything has some underlying layer, but we can't preoccupy ourselves with such things if we want to function.
  17. Grolubao macrumors 65816


    Dec 23, 2008
    London, UK
    The display rattle is normal, most of them have. Does it impact your day to day? Otherwise, I'll say keep it because you'll end up returning more than 100 MbPros
  18. bizack macrumors 6502a

    Apr 21, 2009
    This is kinda hilarious. Just realized the trackpad on my tMBP does the same thing. Also, pretty much every retina MBP has the 'loose display' issue (there's another thread about this). So... all your MBPs are basically fine - you've just managed to replace a handful of non-defective machines.
  19. Kenndac thread starter macrumors 6502


    Jun 28, 2003
    This thread is very interesting — I'm a developer by trade and like to gather data to help my decisions, so I posted my blog post in three different places to see how serious each community thought my issues were.

    - Twitter (my social circle on there is mainly peers in the developer community): "This is unacceptable!" — many responses more upset than I am.
    - Reddit: Nobody cared.
    - MacRumors: "They're supposed to do that!" "You're stupid for caring about it!" "The noises are your ring or the table!" "Don't rattle your MacBook!"

    As a final test, yesterday afternoon I emailed a link to my blog post to Tim Cook. I figured that if I was blowing this way out of proportion, I'd get nothing back, or at most a gift certificate or something to make me be quiet.

    I got a call from a Senior Customer Service rep this morning, "On behalf of Tim Cook". Long story short:

    - The person who called me is now my singular point of contact for this, and I have a direct line and email address.
    - My returned MacBook Pros are being intercepted and 'sent to engineering for detailed diagnosis'.
    - I was asked if I would send in the original copies of the videos from my post.
    - The person who called me asked me to keep them in the loop with everything that happened, and said they're going to contact the Apple Store that MacBook Pro #4 is being shipped to to make sure they know I'm coming when the machine arrives and that it would be useful to have a tech present when I collect it.

    So… there we go. Not a single person I've spoken to at Apple has suggested this is an issue I should be satisfied with, particularly the metallic twang in the bottom case.

    As I've said before, I'll (grudgingly) accept a machine that only has the rattle in the top case. As a poster above commented, I shouldn't have returned MBP #2. Unfortunately, I didn't realise it was such a widespread issue at the time.
  20. aevan macrumors 68030


    Feb 5, 2015
    Apple is known for trying to make their customers happy. It isn't much of an effort for them and a happy customer, one who writes blogs at that, is worth it. They'll tell you how your special case will be sent for detailed diagnosis (hint: it won't - Apple does diagnostic on every machine brought in the service, nothing special about that). In other words: they will replace your laptop, of course, and they were being polite about it.

    And of course they won't say "you'll take it and love it!" - they will try to help within reason. Also, it is expected that the "let's bash Apple" group on twitter will tell you that it's unacceptable. Especially if they are from your own social circles where people will be on your side, understandably. Try asking them if Apple should've kept the SD card slot and see what happens.

    All that still doesn't change the fact that it's strange to shake laptops in a store, then write a blog post about it, then share that post on twitter, reddit and on forums. Just have it replaced if you can, if not return it or learn to live with it. It's functional. It doesn't impare your ability to work on it.

    As others have pointed out, a large number of these laptops rattles when shook. You can do the exchange game or ignore it, and Apple will give you a polite smile and that's it.

    In the end, I have to say this: you posted this issue here and got responses. Some people agree with you, others - like me - question this shaking scenario. By posting here, you basically asked people for their opinions. Well, this one was mine. You don't have to agree, do what you want, etc. - but before you get angry - you did ask for comments.
  21. theturtle macrumors 6502a

    Aug 3, 2009
    I don't know man..... IMO it feels like you're a bit pressed and being unreasonable.

    If I had to go through 4 laptops, I would have just looked for another brand. You sound like one of the customers that are impossible to please and that there would always be SOME issue with the laptop.

    oh and my laptop rattles when I just shook it. Did I know that it did that before I read this post? no. Do I care? no. I won't be in a situation where I would sit at a desk and just rattle a laptop.
  22. WhiteWhaleHolyGrail macrumors 6502a


    Nov 14, 2016
    I agree with this stance completely.

    OP - remember that you are using a heap of electronics crammed into a very pretty package here and not a survival tool. The TBMBP is certainly a solid laptop but it is geared towards a pleasing design. It is definitely not a mil-spec unit built to withstand harsh vibrations and blunt impacts. When you perform your knocking tests on your machines there is every chance you are actually causing damage and/or you are merely hearing harmless movement that is well within the tolerances of a mass consumer built machine.

    My advice to you is that when you get your next unit, use it normally. If anything interferes with that, then by all means replace it.

    Good luck.
  23. sinoka56 macrumors regular

    Jun 13, 2013
    they're making the rmbp thinner and thinner, less replaceable/moving parts, wonder why qc can't handle this.
  24. hawkeye_a, Jan 18, 2017
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2017

    hawkeye_a macrumors 65816


    Jun 27, 2016
    Good on you for going to the top.

    I've decided to live with the sound(the one in the display) because it is much quieter than in the videos (and difficult to reproduce for me).

    I have to say that im kinda peeved that Apple is acting like they have no idea about it and this is the first they are hearing about it. It's been happening across several models spanning several years. And im sure their employees use the laptops and have probably noticed it as well.

    Some of us were literally *lucky* that the geniuses acknowledged its not normal, while others are not so lucky and get told that it is within spec.

    It *seems* like the fix would be a no-brainer... use a stronger adhesive than a piece of tape.

    Reference to another thread regarding noises:
  25. MistrSynistr macrumors 65816

    May 15, 2014
    Are you trolling? You are calling thudding the MacBook in a place you'd never thud your fingers on in real time "rattling" ?? lol.

    The best fix for MacBook Pro #4 is cognitive therapy.

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105 January 16, 2017