Tibook G4 vertical lines

BigRed1

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Dec 13, 2011
288
57
I recently purchased a tibook for cheap to run os9 so I can work on some old music files. I booted up and all seems fine until I nudge the screen, the all I see are vertical multi-colored lines on the screen, forcing a restart. It turns out that after running for a few minutes, regardless of nudging the screen, the same thing happens. I tried plugging in a vga monitor to see if it was just the screen, but the same thing happens to the external screen as well. Is it possible this is a result of a bad cord, or am I facing a more expensive problem. I don't want to throw good money after bad, but it would sure be nice if I could get this thing working. Any thoughts?
 

eyoungren

macrumors Core
Aug 31, 2011
22,107
14,832
ten-zero-eleven-zero-zero by zero-two
I recently purchased a tibook for cheap to run os9 so I can work on some old music files. I booted up and all seems fine until I nudge the screen, the all I see are vertical multi-colored lines on the screen, forcing a restart. It turns out that after running for a few minutes, regardless of nudging the screen, the same thing happens. I tried plugging in a vga monitor to see if it was just the screen, but the same thing happens to the external screen as well. Is it possible this is a result of a bad cord, or am I facing a more expensive problem. I don't want to throw good money after bad, but it would sure be nice if I could get this thing working. Any thoughts?
If the display issue is replicating to an external display it means the graphic chip on the logicboard is bad. That means a new logicboard.

If it had just been the LCD and everything was ok on an external display then it would be the LCVDS cable, which is replaceable. The LCD is also replaceable. But as you indicated that it happens on an external display then again, the bad news is the logicboard is bad.
 

BigRed1

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Dec 13, 2011
288
57
If the display issue is replicating to an external display it means the graphic chip on the logicboard is bad. That means a new logicboard.

If it had just been the LCD and everything was ok on an external display then it would be the LCVDS cable, which is replaceable. The LCD is also replaceable. But as you indicated that it happens on an external display then again, the bad news is the logicboard is bad.
That was my suspicion. Crap. Thanks for the info.
 

BigRed1

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Dec 13, 2011
288
57
Yeah, it totally sucks. Sorry man. Maybe you can use it for parts at least?
I started looking for replacement logic boards on eBay. I think I need to stop spending money on this, though. I think I'll open it up, mess around and see if it makes any difference. If not, I'll just let it go.
 

poiihy

macrumors 68020
Aug 22, 2014
2,285
53
The bad graphics card is a very common problem with iBooks. I have one with a bad graphics card :(

It's caused by poor soldering. You might be able to fix it by cooking the card for a while with a blow torch on low.

It's probably not worth it for a logic board replacement. The logic board is very difficult and tedious, and the price of a replacement logic board is usually more than a new (used) iBook!

------------
The graphics card is on the bottom of the left side of the trackpad. It's under the hard drive. Try pushing and bending around there to get it to work.
 

Zotaccian

macrumors 6502a
Apr 25, 2012
637
2
Agree with others, sounds like bad solder connection under the graphic chip. The chip itself is usually just fine but not properly connected anymore. Heating it to certain temperatures melts the solder but does not harm the chip itself as they are naturally designed to tolerate higher temperatures than the solder under them. TiBook is quite old computer and very likely uses leaded solder which melts at lower temperature than these new lead free (RoHS) solders, leaded solder also flexes more than non-lead solder which is a good thing in terms of durability.

I performed reflow a while ago to my PowerBook G4 and it is still working, but to be fair I don't use it all the time.
 

BigRed1

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Dec 13, 2011
288
57
Agree with others, sounds like bad solder connection under the graphic chip. The chip itself is usually just fine but not properly connected anymore. Heating it to certain temperatures melts the solder but does not harm the chip itself as they are naturally designed to tolerate higher temperatures than the solder under them. TiBook is quite old computer and very likely uses leaded solder which melts at lower temperature than these new lead free (RoHS) solders, leaded solder also flexes more than non-lead solder which is a good thing in terms of durability.

I performed reflow a while ago to my PowerBook G4 and it is still working, but to be fair I don't use it all the time.
Interesting. I suppose buying a blowtorch wouldn't be a huge waste of money to try to fix it. There may be other uses for such a thing in the future.
 

Altemose

macrumors G3
Mar 26, 2013
9,171
479
Elkton, Maryland
The bad graphics card is a very common problem with iBooks. I have one with a bad graphics card :(

It's caused by poor soldering. You might be able to fix it by cooking the card for a while with a blow torch on low.

It's probably not worth it for a logic board replacement. The logic board is very difficult and tedious, and the price of a replacement logic board is usually more than a new (used) iBook!

------------
The graphics card is on the bottom of the left side of the trackpad. It's under the hard drive. Try pushing and bending around there to get it to work.

OP has a Titanium PowerBook G4 and not an iBook.

Agree with others, sounds like bad solder connection under the graphic chip. The chip itself is usually just fine but not properly connected anymore. Heating it to certain temperatures melts the solder but does not harm the chip itself as they are naturally designed to tolerate higher temperatures than the solder under them. TiBook is quite old computer and very likely uses leaded solder which melts at lower temperature than these new lead free (RoHS) solders, leaded solder also flexes more than non-lead solder which is a good thing in terms of durability.

I performed reflow a while ago to my PowerBook G4 and it is still working, but to be fair I don't use it all the time.


Does it bug out at all if you stress the GPU?

Interesting. I suppose buying a blowtorch wouldn't be a huge waste of money to try to fix it. There may be other uses for such a thing in the future.

I personally would use an oven at 385 for 7.5 minutes. I take a cookie sheet and ball up a decent amount of aluminum foil. I sit the board on the balls of foil (with one in each corner) and bake it. Ensure that the GPU is facing up not down when you do this otherwise it may fail completely. I have done this on an HP Pavilion DV6000 without an issue. It is important to reapply fresh thermal paste post-reflow.
 

Zotaccian

macrumors 6502a
Apr 25, 2012
637
2
Does it bug out at all if you stress the GPU?
At least Openmark works fine, I don't have any games to test with. It originally failed when I watched video using YouView, I haven't played any games with this machine during the time I have owned it so the card has newer been taxed to the max.
 

BigRed1

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Dec 13, 2011
288
57
OP has a Titanium PowerBook G4 and not an iBook.





Does it bug out at all if you stress the GPU?




I personally would use an oven at 385 for 7.5 minutes. I take a cookie sheet and ball up a decent amount of aluminum foil. I sit the board on the balls of foil (with one in each corner) and bake it. Ensure that the GPU is facing up not down when you do this otherwise it may fail completely. I have done this on an HP Pavilion DV6000 without an issue. It is important to reapply fresh thermal paste post-reflow.
I thought about the oven, but thought it would be too silly to even ask about. Is there a danger to other components from being this hot? Seems like the easiest solution.
 

Intell

macrumors P6
Jan 24, 2010
18,898
410
Inside
Ohh that's what TiBook means :p

But I think those still tend to have the same problem
TiBooks generally are not prone to a faulty GPU like the iBook series. Their main problem was weak screen hinges. Also, their GPU is located near the center of the machine, under the F3-F5 keys or F7-F9 keys depending on the model.
 

Altemose

macrumors G3
Mar 26, 2013
9,171
479
Elkton, Maryland
I thought about the oven, but thought it would be too silly to even ask about. Is there a danger to other components from being this hot? Seems like the easiest solution.

Is there a risk? Sure but there is with any reflow. It can't hurt to try this over buying a new board!
 
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.