POLL: How severe is the 2016/2017 MacBook Pro keyboard issue

Are you affected by keyboard problems on your 2016/2017 MacBook Pro?

  • 2016 13" MacBook Pro with keyboard issues

    Votes: 12 8.8%
  • 2016 13" MacBook Pro with no keyboard issues

    Votes: 16 11.8%
  • 2017 13" MacBook Pro with keyboard issues

    Votes: 9 6.6%
  • 2017 13" MacBook Pro with no keyboard issues

    Votes: 23 16.9%
  • 2016 15" MacBook Pro with keyboard issues

    Votes: 19 14.0%
  • 2016 15" MacBook Pro with no keyboard issues

    Votes: 15 11.0%
  • 2017 15" MacBook Pro with keyboard issues

    Votes: 15 11.0%
  • 2017 15" MacBook Pro with no keyboard issues

    Votes: 27 19.9%

  • Total voters
    136

Cristim74

macrumors regular
Original poster
Aug 27, 2016
178
144
Bucharest, Romania
Dear friends,

I'm trying to figure out how severe is this problem with the 2016/2017 MacBook Pro keyboard.
I have splitted this poll by year (2016/2017) and size (13/15).
Most of the people only post when having problems so I'm trying to figure our how extensive these problems are.
Please cast your vote and let's find out.
You can elaborate your situation in a post bellow if you care to go into details.

Thanks!
 
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maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
66,940
33,924
Boston
I'm trying to figure out how severe is this problem with the 2016/2017 MacBook Pro keyboard
I don't know if you're going to get an accurate representation of the depth (or lack of depth) of the issue. I recall another thread where a member had a poll and the numbers were slanted in that people were not having issues, yet 6 months later that OP of that thread had a keyboard failure
 

tram

macrumors newbie
Mar 31, 2018
14
5
you might want to include 2018 in your poll. I think there was a slight alteration right around the first of the year. My MPXR2LL/A I bought this week from Best Buy has a Jan 2018 battery build meaning this unit was produced in 2018. I also have a 2016 and 2017 and with this one the keyboard feels more like 2016. More noise. The 2017 was not as loud with clicks , this feels like a combo of both
 

coolX

macrumors member
Apr 19, 2016
92
126
you might want to include 2018 in your poll. I think there was a slight alteration right around the first of the year. My MPXR2LL/A I bought this week from Best Buy has a Jan 2018 battery build meaning this unit was produced in 2018. I also have a 2016 and 2017 and with this one the keyboard feels more like 2016. More noise. The 2017 was not as loud with clicks , this feels like a combo of both
so you're saying apple decided to make the keyboard worse?
 

whiteonline

macrumors 6502a
Aug 19, 2011
525
245
California, USA
I've had the 2016 15" pro with no issues since release, and I use it for work daily. The only problem I've found is debris (crumb from a breakfast bar for me) can make its way under a key and it stops working reliably. A quick cleaning with a rocket blower or canned air fixes it immediately. But this has happened only twice since purchasing the machine.
 
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leman

macrumors G4
Oct 14, 2008
11,278
5,788
So can I vote 15 times, for the amount of laptops I manage? :D

Anyway, there was a thread somewhere here where a poster shared information about keyboard failure within a large company, it was apparently in the ballpark of 7%.

Your poll will most likely overestimate the laptops with failed keyboards btw...
 
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maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
66,940
33,924
Boston
Your poll will most likely overestimate the laptops with failed keyboards btw...
As much as I think the 2016/2017 models have keyboard issues, I agree with you. People by and large don't come here to post positive information about a product but seek help. The results will not be an accurate representation of actual MBP users in the wild
 
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groove-agent

macrumors 65816
Jan 13, 2006
1,217
1,034
Your poll will most likely overestimate the laptops with failed keyboards btw...
Or under estimate. Not all owners participate on MR, or will even see this poll.
[doublepost=1522516023][/doublepost]Ouch. That's going to get expensive once your warranties expire - $500 per unit per repair.

I can see 2016/2017s going for CHEAP and flooding the market when their warranty expires.

I was just about to ask the same question. We now have 4 machines 2x 2017 15”, 1x 2016 13”, and 1x 2017 13”.
[doublepost=1522516221][/doublepost]Over what amount of time? The failure % should increase over time as the keyboard gets more exposure to the elements.

So can I vote 15 times, for the amount of laptops I manage? :D

Anyway, there was a thread somewhere here where a poster shared information about keyboard failure within a large company, it was apparently in the ballpark of 7%.

Your poll will most likely overestimate the laptops with failed keyboards btw...
 

csurfr

macrumors 68020
Dec 7, 2016
2,310
1,747
Seattle, WA
Over what amount of time? The failure % should increase over time as the keyboard gets more exposure to the elements.
1x 2016 was purchased at launch, 2x 2017 15” at launch, and 1x 2017 13” was purchased about a week or so go.

As some people have said they experienced problems right out of the box, I’ve included it in my post. Also, that is not including the 15” that I recently returned due to Illustrator finally being fixed in 10.13.4. That 15” didn’t have any problems either.
 

ahmedouvix

macrumors member
Dec 20, 2013
88
12
b bb bb b bb bbb bb bb bb b b b b b b bbb bb b b b
n nn nn nn nnn nn nnn nn n nnn nnn nnnnn nnn nn n n n nn n nn nn

that's what a single click on B or N keys can do on my 2017 macbook 15".
 
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csurfr

macrumors 68020
Dec 7, 2016
2,310
1,747
Seattle, WA
b bb bb b bb bbb bb bb bb b b b b b b bbb bb b b b
n nn nn nn nnn nn nnn nn n nnn nnn nnnnn nnn nn n n n nn n nn nn

that's what a single click on B or N keys can do on my 2017 macbook 15".
And you haven't taken it in to get fixed why? It's still under warranty.
 

Karnicopia

macrumors 6502
Mar 27, 2015
435
249
I have a 2016 15" and I have no keyboard issues. I use it pretty much every day and I don't typically dock it so I'm using the keyboard and trackpad pretty much exclusively. I have to say 2 years later I still love this computer it's been great for me.
 
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BananaX

macrumors regular
May 24, 2017
112
36
I had a 2016 15" MBP, I was using it in clamshell mod all the time with a 4k monitor. I experienced keyboard issue/hinge issue/random popping after 9 months usage. Got 2017 model as a replacement, returned it and brought myself a 13" non-touch bar MBP. And the 13" MBP runs like a baby. I suspect, using clamshell mode too often will increase the keyboard and other problems' failure rate? Maybe the heat distribution is not as good as they expected in clamshell mode.
 

csurfr

macrumors 68020
Dec 7, 2016
2,310
1,747
Seattle, WA
I had a 2016 15" MBP, I was using it in clamshell mod all the time with a 4k monitor. I experienced keyboard issue/hinge issue/random popping after 9 months usage. Got 2017 model as a replacement, returned it and brought myself a 13" non-touch bar MBP. And the 13" MBP runs like a baby. I suspect, using clamshell mode too often will increase the keyboard and other problems' failure rate? Maybe the heat distribution is not as good as they expected in clamshell mode.
That's interesting, as the 15" and Touch-Bar 13" both have dual fans, whereas the 13" Non Touch-Bar models have one fan. I know that the 2016 and early 2017 models (15") had some issues with thermal expansion and the popping noise that you described.
 

groove-agent

macrumors 65816
Jan 13, 2006
1,217
1,034
This is a good poll. I just wish we had a larger sample to draw from. I'm very curious about the results. My estimation is 1/3 of these keyboards will fail in a three year term (11% per year). The longer the term, the higher the chance.
[doublepost=1522610871][/doublepost]I ran a 2008 in clamshell while casual gaming and the screen became separated where the GPU was located.

I had a 2016 15" MBP, I was using it in clamshell mod all the time with a 4k monitor. I experienced keyboard issue/hinge issue/random popping after 9 months usage. Got 2017 model as a replacement, returned it and brought myself a 13" non-touch bar MBP. And the 13" MBP runs like a baby. I suspect, using clamshell mode too often will increase the keyboard and other problems' failure rate? Maybe the heat distribution is not as good as they expected in clamshell mode.
 
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BananaX

macrumors regular
May 24, 2017
112
36
That's interesting, as the 15" and Touch-Bar 13" both have dual fans, whereas the 13" Non Touch-Bar models have one fan. I know that the 2016 and early 2017 models (15") had some issues with thermal expansion and the popping noise that you described.
I didn't run the base 13 mode in clamshell mode tho. I am pretty sure the fan can't deal with the heat. But, I have used the 2016 15" MBP for 6 months without external display, and never in clamshell mode, and I did not experience any issue. All those problems were occurred after I brought a 4k display, and start clamshelling. I can't speak for someone else. but with a 4k display, that thing was so hot all the time, without even running anything.
 
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