Replacement iMac? / Contacting Apple

Discussion in 'iMac' started by lastmile, Apr 5, 2011.

  1. lastmile macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2008
    #1
    I've got a 2008 24" iMac and have been dealing with a weird screen burn-in issue since Sept 2009. Images on the left side of the screen will get burned in after a few hours. This typically happens with my AIM buddies list that doesn't get moved, though plenty of windows will get moved around over top of it while I'm using the iMac. I've always thought it was the graphics card (8800GS) because that side of the iMac gets much hotter than the rest. If I left the iMac go to sleep or turn it off the problem goes away but reappears again after use.


    Sept 2009 - Notice problem, lug iMac into Apple Store where it stays a few days before they call telling me they can't replicate the issue. I probably shouldn't take it back but I did.

    Aug 2010 - Problem continues to happen and I finally decided to take it back to the Apple Store. They tell me they can't replicate the problem and I keep pushing them. Finally I get a voicemail telling me there's nothing more they can do. As soon as I finish listening to it I've got another voicemail saying they finally found the problem and are going to replace the LCD.

    Feb 2011 - The problem is back just the same as before. This time at least Apple shouldn't have to waste time not being able to spot the problem. Wrong. They keep calling telling me they can't see it and I keep refusing to just come and pick it up. Finally after about two weeks I'm sick of it and go to get it. Nobody knows whats going on. Finally a guy comes running out from the back room and shows me a photo of the burn in on his iphone. Great, why didn't you call me before I drove all the way here. So now they're going to replaced the graphics card and the logicboard. They're so screwed up I got a voicemail from the guy I originally dealt with this time saying he's "noticed I haven't reached out to pick up my iMac". That really pissed me off. Finally, into late March its done and I pick it up.

    March 2011 - I get it home and the fans are all on high speed. I take it back in and they find somebody didn't put on of the fan connectors on tight enough. Luckily I'm only without it a few days this time.

    April 2011 - I want a new iMac once the updated ones come out so I decide to sell the current one. I give the prospective buyer the history but tell him its all fixed now and that there is still Apple Care until April 30. I'm at the point of wiping the drive to install 10.6 when I see the slightest amount of burn in during the white boot-up screen. So the problem is still not fixed.

    I've been getting my thoughts ready to call Apple Care. Up to this point I've dealt with the King of Prussia, PA Apple Store. I've got less than 1 month of Apple Care and no confidence that the iMac will be repaired correctly. Which means even if it works OK for me I'd be very hesitant to sell it to someone and have the problem reappear soon which, since I'm not an *******, would mean refunding the buyer's money, paying to get the iMac shipped back, etc. So at this point its really not worth much to me in terms of funding a new iMac.

    Part of the reason I want a new iMac is so I can have Apple Care again because of my experience with this iMac. Plus I want the newest model since we should be seeing an update soon. So I want to come away from this with the NEW iMac with at least the opportunity to purchase Apple Care for it, or a reasonable credit towards the purchase of the new iMac with Apple Care.

    Does anyone know of a way to contact somebody at Apple that can help with this via e-mail? I do not want to take this thing back in for another repair. I wish I'd kept better notes about the whole experience because its not just the multiple trips to the Apple Store but also the multiple times I'd call them and be promised a call back within X amount of time and never get one.

    I'm pissed and really don't want to get into negotiating with somebody over the phone because I know I'll be flustered and probably not push as hard as I should.
     
  2. lastmile thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2008
    #2
    Wow, over 100 views and NO replies?

    Well I just got off the phone with Apple after about a half hour. The guy I talked to listened to my story then went over the repair notes in the system. He finally got ahold of a senior advisor then passed me off to him. Some more time on hold with this guy and then he offers to replace the iMac if I take it in for repair and the problem recurs within 90 days. He told me he personally could not replace it or give me a credit as I asked.

    I told him I wasn't really comfortable with that so he gave me the direct line for Apple Customer Relations. He told me he couldn't transfer me and also that I "didn't get the number from him". He also gave me his contact number so that I could call him and go forward with the repair if customer relations didn't help me. He gave me the case number and told me to leave it on his voicemail if I call. He said its Apple policy not to pick up outside calls to direct lines so he will not answer my call but will call me back. Forget the case number and no call back.

    I'll call customer relations tomorrow and hope I get somewhere with them. He said make sure you know what you want when you call them. I guess I'm just going to ask for a replacement at this point though if I get it I'm likely to sell it to get a new iMac since I want Apple Care and I don't see it being available on a replacement.

    So now any comments?!?
     
  3. Badger^2 macrumors 68000

    Badger^2

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2009
    Location:
    Sacramento
    #3
    Never go to the store for this kind of stuff.

    You should have called AC right away and asked to be kicked up ASAP.

    3 times for a repair = lemon = replace.

    thought that was pretty common knowledge.
     
  4. lastmile thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2008
    #4
    Yeah I'd read about the 3x thing though the first time for me wasn't actually a "repair" since nothing got fixed. I hope I don't have any problem with Apple tomorrow.

    I think the fact I had to take it back to have the fan issue fixed got to the guy. He was like what? what was it in there for the last time? I said oh the fans and explained. Then I was immediately put on hold again.
     
  5. lastmile thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2008
    #5
    OK, so I talked to someone in Customer Relations and she told me to take it back to the Apple Store so they could look at it and give her some more info.

    I took it in today and they started it up. Of course the problem was not visible at first and I expected to have to leave it, put up with a week of calls that they say no problem, and then maybe finally get it replaced.

    Instead the guy read the repair notes for a bit then went to talk to someone for 5 mins. He came back and said the manager wanted to replace the iMac. He offered me the 27" i5, the top stock iMac. I asked if I could pay the $200 to upgrade it to an i7 and that was no problem. I expected to not be able to get Apple Care since this was a replacement, not a new purchase, but that was also no problem. So with that and tax (I bought the original in DE and paid no tax but had to on this one since I was in PA) I paid about $500 for a new top of the line iMac that's probably 2x as good as mine in every way (lacks FW 400 though, oh well).

    It would have been nice to get one after the update but oh well. I'm happy with this and I really didn't need any more than my 2008 model had so this more than meets my needs. :)
     
  6. lpolarityl macrumors 6502

    lpolarityl

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2009
    #6
    That is awesome. Congrats on the unexpected, but fantastic, upgrade!
     
  7. Badger^2 macrumors 68000

    Badger^2

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2009
    Location:
    Sacramento
    #7
  8. lastmile thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2008
    #8
    I wouldn't call it crying over FW400. I just liked the fact that I could have a FW400 device like an optical drive or camera plugged into the FW400 port and keep my FW800 RAID on the other port without swapping connections.

    I could get away from the external optical drive if Netflix stopped putting stickers on its DVDs making them not work in the iMacs slot load drive. :mad:
     
  9. farmermac macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2009
    Location:
    Iowa
  10. Badger^2 macrumors 68000

    Badger^2

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2009
    Location:
    Sacramento
    #10
    Ahhh, roger that. Ive got a DVD-RW and portable 80 gig on my FW400 port and 5 FW800 drives on the FW800 port on my iMac as well.

    I had the same thoughts when they dropped the FW400 port as well.

    You can still put the optical drive at the end of your chain, it wont affect FW800 speeds.
     
  11. lastmile thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2008
    #11
    The Apple Store called today - they got a shipment of i7s in. So I got to go pick it up! :)

    Huge, great screen much nicer than the 24".

    But speaking of optical drives....this thing sucks. It took like 2 hours to install Adobe CS3 Master Collection from 4 DVDs and 45 mins to copy Avatar (used Fairmount so I don't know if that triggers riplock if this drive has it).

    Running Handbrake on Avatar now to see how it does. So far its looking about the same as my Phenom II X4 3.2 GHz.
     
  12. Badger^2 macrumors 68000

    Badger^2

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2009
    Location:
    Sacramento
    #12
  13. uzit macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 15, 2008
    #13
    Thats fantastic! I had the same problem as you and I had the same machine but they only replaced it with a i3 27" but I wasn't really that fussed it does what I need it to do!
     
  14. lastmile thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2008
    #14
    This is RIDICULOUS!!!

    The SD card reader doesn't work. But if the card is in my camera and connected via USB its fine.

    And when I woke the iMac from sleep this morning there was a giant 3" wide green band running down the middle of the screen. That only shows up when there's black over that part of the screen. Like I put a quicktime window in the area before the movie starts and I get a black window with a big green stripe in it. Other colors don't seem to be affected.

    I requested a call from Apple Support and while I was waiting I stuck the SD card in one more time. The green band immediately went away. SD card still didn't work though.

    When I had Support on the phone we couldn't recreate the green band problem. But the guy told me to take it into the Apple Store to have the SD card reader problem taken care of. I immediately e-mailed the woman I'd spoken to at Customer Relations just to let her know what's up.

    I guess I'll be lugging an iMac in there AGAIN. And I'm going to tell them I want another new one if the repair requires it to be opened up. They put some nicks in the aluminum of the 24" last time (well the last few times). I didn't care since it was 3 years old and I'd already nicked up the base a bit with my keyboard. But this is supposed to be a brand new computer!
     
  15. lastmile thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2008
    #15
    OK, the saga continues and is hopefully now at a happy end. I packed the iMac backup and took it to the Apple Store today. Luckily the guy who'd helped me the last two times was there and came right over even though I didn't have an appointment. And I have to say I really appreciated that because what would be "came right over" in a regular store comes to "parted the crowd" in this Apple Store even around 4:45 in the afternoon.

    I'd taken some photos of the screen problem which he looked at and by the time he came back from finding an SD card to test the reader (which did work, it must have been a problem with my card) the green line was already on the screen.

    So, I now have another new iMac. And its going to be perfect....really!
     

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