PowerBook dead - chimes, fan whirrs, nothing more

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by McBain, Sep 20, 2006.

  1. McBain macrumors member

    Dec 24, 2003
    Hi all,

    I'm sitting in an internet cafe in Tokyo with my dead PowerBook (1.33 GHz, 1.25 GB RAM, 60 GB HD, no superdrive) beside me.

    When I try to boot, I get the startup chime and then, a few seconds later, the fans starts to spin hard and nothing comes up on the screen. At least not after about a minute or so - I'm scared to leave it screaming like that for too long.

    First, does anyone have an idea what's happened here?

    For the last couple months I've been noticing that it was warmer than usual, especially around the hard drive (lower left). I've been using a desk fan to keep it cool while I work (I use it 10-14 hours a day, multitasking all the time). I thought it might just have been the summer heat, but even when it cooled down the laptop was still hotter than normal (but not scorching).

    In the last few weeks I've also had problems putting it to sleep. Occasionally, after doing work on the Tube, it would not wake up after being put to sleep. Is there a chance it was overheating because I put it straight into its sleeve after doing work?

    I would also like to see if I can access it in target mode. Do I just need a regular Firewire cable for that?

    Does anyone have any ideas? Have I simply pushed it too hard for too long and now it's given up on me?
  2. Markleshark macrumors 603


    Aug 15, 2006
    Carlisle, Up Norf!
    Sounds to Mark (from what ive read on here anyway) like Logic board. Have you tried plugging it into a external monitor see if anything comes up on there?
  3. McBain thread starter macrumors member

    Dec 24, 2003
    I don't have a dongle to attach a monitor. And I don't have ready access to a monitor either.

    What I did do is turn it on, wait long enough that it would be at my login screen, log in, and then play with the volume buttons. I don't hear a thing, so I probably am not logged in nor is it actually running.
  4. McBain thread starter macrumors member

    Dec 24, 2003
    Since my last post I have tried to access my hard drive through target mode but it didn't work.

    Would this be an immediate sign that the hard drive is dead or could it be that the logic board has died on me?

    The fan is too loud and causes too much vibration for me to tell if the hard drive is working. Is there some other way to tell?
  5. solidbreakz macrumors regular

    Sep 21, 2004
    symptoms indicate that your logic board needs to be replaced. If you can't enter target disk mode then it's your logic board, not your LCD OR your HD. Hope you got AppleCare. If not...plan on disassembling you PB and removing the HD. Doing so and placing it in an enclosure is the only way you'll access your data.

    If you have AppleCare...it's worldwide as far as coverage is concerned. Just take it to your local Apple Store. If not, that logic board will cost you...a lot. Consider then picking up a MBP or a MacBook.

    good luck.
  6. NextTuesday macrumors member

    Aug 31, 2006
    Cork, Ireland
    I'm guessing prices are the same (obviously converted to Yen) but in Ireland a Logic Board will set you back about 800€ including labour. I've had 1st hand expierience with this. If you have a backup of your data and think that 800€ (or whatever it is in Yen) is too much for a Logic Board then do what I did and buy a MacBook, you'll be carrying .4lbs more and it'll be 1.2-inches wider but its definatley worth more than an 800€ (or the Yen equivelent) Logic Board replacement for a PPC laptop.
  7. nickelbackmac macrumors regular


    Jun 23, 2006
    Jonesboro, Arkansas USA

    Yeah, before I knew only my HD failed on my iBook, I called Apple to see if it was a dead board and asked how much it was and the guy said "I don't really know. I can look into it for ya but it's in the $600-$700 range. You might as well just get a newer system". And that was just an iBook, the lower-ranged systems. I can't imagine what it would be for a Powerbook with no warranty.
  8. McBain thread starter macrumors member

    Dec 24, 2003
    Thanks guys. I did a bit more research since my last post and saw that it was likely the logic board. Gah.

    I bought an enclosure and I'll be taking out my hard drive to back everything up and then I'll hit up the Apple Store (now that I'm back in London). If the figures being quoted are what I'm going to be charged, I suspect I'll never be using my beloved 12" PowerBook again. Sniff.

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