Vega MBP screen flickering (with Poll!)

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by ThisBougieLife, Dec 5, 2018.

?

Does your November 2018 MacBook Pro have a flickering problem?

  1. Vega 20, yes

    21 vote(s)
    48.8%
  2. Vega 20, no

    22 vote(s)
    51.2%
  3. Vega 16, yes

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  4. Vega 16, no

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  1. ThisBougieLife, Dec 5, 2018
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2019

    ThisBougieLife macrumors 68000

    ThisBougieLife

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2016
    Location:
    SF Bay Area, California
    #1
    Just updated to Mojave 10.14.2 today and the screen started flickering. Happens every few seconds or so.

    The model is 2.6 GHz/Vega 20/16 GB RAM/1 TB SSD.

    Anyone else having the same problem with their Late Nov. MBP?

    Observations (updated):

    -It never happened once before updating macOS today.
    -It happens when automatic graphic switching is disabled. Enabling graphics switching stops the flickering. Disabling it again does not cause the flickering to return.
    -It happens more when I wake the computer from sleep.

    Could anyone who has a Vega MBP and has updated to 10.14.2 do this test for me?

    1. Set the scaled resolution to 1440x900.
    2. Disable automatic graphics switching. (System Preferences --> Energy Saver)
    3. Put the computer to sleep. Wait 5-10 seconds.
    4. Wake the computer and begin using Safari or Chrome or Mail or any app. Do you see any flickering?
     
  2. fokmik macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2016
    Location:
    USA
    #2
    Yes, do you fix it?
    Does it happen everywhere or just in safari?
     
  3. ThisBougieLife thread starter macrumors 68000

    ThisBougieLife

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2016
    Location:
    SF Bay Area, California
    #3
    Happens everywhere.

    Okay, after some experimenting I realized what's causing the problem. It shouldn't be happening anyway, but I found out how to stop it.

    For the past several days I've had automatic graphics switching disabled because I've been using my computer on my desk with the cord plugged in. When I enabled graphics switching again, the flickering stopped. Repeated tests with it on and off have confirmed this is the cause of the problem.

    So does that mean that it will start flickering again when the Vega 20 "kicks in"? I guess I have until January 8th to figure that out.
     
  4. SDColorado macrumors 68040

    SDColorado

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2011
    Location:
    Highlands Ranch, CO
    #4
    Yeah, that still shouldn't be happening. I hope that it doesn't indicate an issue with the Vega 20 card on your machine. Like you said, at least you have until January 8 to find out.
     
  5. ThisBougieLife, Dec 5, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2018

    ThisBougieLife thread starter macrumors 68000

    ThisBougieLife

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2016
    Location:
    SF Bay Area, California
    #5
    Well, I'm an impatient person so I've already started the return process (have until the 19th to send it back with this label). If I do I'm going to re-order the exact same configuration. Hope this doesn't happen again.
     
  6. bobdob macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2014
    #6
    Why would you not test out the vega graphics now to see if that is the issue? Pretty simple, download a game or 3d benchmark and let her rip. You'll find out real quick.
     
  7. ThisBougieLife thread starter macrumors 68000

    ThisBougieLife

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2016
    Location:
    SF Bay Area, California
    #7
    But it only flickers when I wake the computer from sleep (repeated testing has shown me that this is the only time it happens). If I enable graphics switching and the flickering stops then disable it again it will not start to flicker again. It will be flicker-free from then on (regardless of which graphics is being used) until it goes to sleep and wakes up at which point the flickering starts up.
     
  8. 0-0 macrumors member

    0-0

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2010
    #8
    No screen flicker on my Vega 20 with the latest update.
     
  9. ThisBougieLife thread starter macrumors 68000

    ThisBougieLife

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2016
    Location:
    SF Bay Area, California
    #9
    So just to be clear--if you uncheck graphics switching, put the computer to sleep for about 5 seconds, and wake it up, you see no flickering? (Doing this guarantees flickering on mine every time, I've done it like 10 times now. Just trying to make sure I actually do have a lemon).
     
  10. Ploki macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2008
    #10
    I had a similar issue on an i9/560X for which i got the refund.

    However, in my case, flickering happened only on INTERNAL GPU, never on the Radeon. For you it seems to have the opposite.

    It never happened if i disabled "automatically adjust brightness" - try toying with that option as well.

    I got the refund because "Apple engineering couldn't figure out a solution after 50 days"
    I performed a system dump for them on a wiped mac, clean install, and was able to consistently replicate the issue. But in my case, software updates didn't affect it. It dragged through 2 versions of OS.
     
  11. ThisBougieLife thread starter macrumors 68000

    ThisBougieLife

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2016
    Location:
    SF Bay Area, California
    #11
    Thanks for sharing that. Automatically adjust brightness seems to have no effect on mine--whether it's on or off, it still flickers.

    Oh well, I'm returning it this morning. I will take a chance and get the same computer again and hope it doesn't have the same problem. I loved this computer until yesterday. It was definitely better than my 2016 model.
     
  12. Ploki macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2008
    #12
    I think that's a safer bet - i was okay with mine, but flicker was just the first sign of trouble.
     
  13. SDColorado macrumors 68040

    SDColorado

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2011
    Location:
    Highlands Ranch, CO
    #13
    I honestly don't think you will have the same issue with the replacement one. It sounds like your current MBP is problematic. That shouldn't be happening. I think you will find the replacement does not behave that way.
     
  14. progressman macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2018
    Location:
    Russia/Germany
    #14
    I have the same issue with my MBP with Vega 20. Did not notice it before 10.14.2.

    I can confirm that flickering appears mostly after awake from sleep.
    Unfortunately, right now I don't see any relation with an automatic graphics switching.

    Please share your experience with a replaced one. Does it have flickering or not?
     
  15. ThisBougieLife thread starter macrumors 68000

    ThisBougieLife

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2016
    Location:
    SF Bay Area, California
    #15
    I never noticed it before 10.14.2. But your problem sounds very similar to mine.

    I haven’t gotten a replacement yet. I may never get one. I’m using my 2016 model right now.
     
  16. Ploki macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2008
    #16
    oof. sorry to hear that.

    i thought vega 20 models were finally done right...
     
  17. Cuda392 Suspended

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2018
    #17
    I thought people said Google Chrome was the issue and turning some setting off in chrome fixed it.
     
  18. ThisBougieLife thread starter macrumors 68000

    ThisBougieLife

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2016
    Location:
    SF Bay Area, California
    #18
    ^You mean hardware acceleration? I don't think that's the problem here. But even if it is, disabling hardware acceleration causes other problems, so I don't think would be an acceptable compromise.

    I had flickering even when I wasn't using Chrome. I often only used Safari and yet I'd still see flickering.
     
  19. Cuda392 Suspended

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2018
    #19
  20. ThisBougieLife thread starter macrumors 68000

    ThisBougieLife

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2016
    Location:
    SF Bay Area, California
    #20
    Well I sent mine back so I can't test it. If it works for others, great, but disabling hardware acceleration makes Chrome run terribly (from what I remember and it certainly ruins it on Windows), so not being able to use Chrome would be a bummer. Also it's weird that I had absolutely no issues until I updated Mojave. Still haven't had any explanation for what the OS update had to do with it, if anything.
     
  21. Farfooz macrumors member

    Farfooz

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2009
    #21
    I noticed the same after 10.14.2 upon waking from sleep. I never had screen flickering before the update (had the laptop since November 23). I managed to temp fix each time by swapping my Graphics card manually from auto to integrated then back to auto and it resolves the issue (I use gfxCardStatus)

    I have MBP with Vega 20/i9/32gb Ram, and not sure if it is necessarily a hardware or software problem if it began to occur mere hours post updated to 10.14.2, but my gut says its software because of the update + the temporary solution that fixes it for me. I'm waiting out 10.14.3 before I go to apple to see if i should get a replacement
     
  22. ThisBougieLife thread starter macrumors 68000

    ThisBougieLife

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2016
    Location:
    SF Bay Area, California
    #22
    ^Thanks for sharing that. Sounds exactly the same as the issue I had. Hope 10.14.3 resolves it.

    Now I'm curious to know if it happens to anyone with the Vega 16 or if it's limited only to the 20.
     
  23. Peter_M macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2018
    #23
    This is caused by a bug in macOS, specifically the function "Automatic brightness adjustment" in display options. This bug has persisted for several months now, hopefully Apple will be able to fix it soon. (I had the issue with both my 2016 MacBook, and now also with a 2018 MacBook Pro.)
     
  24. simonmet, Dec 26, 2018
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2019

    simonmet macrumors 68000

    simonmet

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2012
    Location:
    Sydney
    #24
    That is very wise and the best thing to do in this situation. It could very well be a hardware defect; you won’t know for sure unless it’s fixed by software. Even if you get a brand new replacement from Apple I’m not sure if it resets your return window (can anyone confirm?). For this reason I’m more comfortable requesting a refund and then buying again separately to get a completely new replacement window.

    Your configuration is insanely expensive for a laptop (albeit a high-end one) and it should work as expected out of the box. Whatever you do, don’t accept any delaying tactics from Apple. They may very well try to instigate a software support process which is both time consuming and annoying and hardly the sort of experience you pay top dollar for.

    As a warning to anyone else that might experience an issue like this on a new product my advice is to politely but firmly say you’re not interested in a support process for a brand new product that doesn’t meet your reasonable expectations (such as a non-flickering display). If Apple can’t supply a hardware and software package that is free from problems they should accept it back and work on their QA/QC, not expect the customer to be inconvenienced by a drawn-out support process and having to endure a brand new computer they paid good money for that has issues. Of course no QA/QC process can guarantee a 100% problem-free shipping inventory, but the end result for the customer is the same: just don’t accept flawed, broken or problematic products!

    Even though the throttling issue was ultimately fixed with software (and this could be too), that would’ve been reason enough to return it before the issue was fixed in my opinion because affected units weren’t performing to spec. Funny how quickly Apple got onto that one given how widespread the problem was.
     
  25. Peter_M, Dec 26, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2018

    Peter_M macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2018
    #25
    I would rule out software issues first, before possibly returning a fully functioning computer.
     

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