What to do? - Four Repairs - Radeon x1900 XT

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Washuu, Aug 14, 2008.

  1. Washuu macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2008
    #1
    What to do? I am about to take my Mac Pro in for its four repair of the exact same issue, a faulty ATI Radeon x1900 XT video card. The issue being that I consistently have graphic corruption when using the desktop normally or within 3D applications. Each time it is "fixed", the issue comes back fairly quickly or later on. I use this machine for work so I usually have to wait some time before I can send it in for repair. Usually a reboot will clear the issues, but not all the time.

    It could be an unfortunately reoccurring hardware issue or possibly buggy drivers. To me I lean on the side of software because the issues can be screen captured and recorded to video. I have done a complete reinstall of OS X twice over this time.

    The Blizzard support team has helped me through this and they believe it is probably an issue with World of Warcraft's code or a buggy driver.

    Apple keeps insisting it is a hardware issue and repairs it as such. The only repair that has not been done is replacing the RAM.(I do have spare RAM I have tested and the issues are being reproduced on either set.)

    Examples:
    http://www.experimentalinsanity.com/albums/random/aks03.jpg - (Makes a great desktop background too!)
    http://www.nonamestudios.com/videos/Ghostlands_040308_150856.mp4 - World of Warcraft
    http://www.nonamestudios.com/videos/08-12-08 Graphic Issues.mp4 - Recent example showing the issue occurring during desktop usage.

    Repair History:
    08/17/2007 - Do It Yourself Repair - Swapped out Radeon x1900 XT video card.
    01/10/2008 - In-Store Repair - Video card replaced again.
    03/30/2008 - In-Store Repair - Video card replaced again and motherboard replaced. - Issues returned within the week and I did not want to head right back to repair again.

    Coming up:
    08/??/2008 - Going to ship it in or drop it off for repair. The graphic glitches have become worse since March after the repair. I want this damn machine to disappear.
     
  2. CaptainChunk macrumors 68020

    CaptainChunk

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2008
    Location:
    Phoenix, AZ
    #2
    So, if this problem isn't isolated to a Blizzard game and just happens in general, that would lead me to conclude that the cards either came from a bad batch or have a driver issue. It would be interesting to know if other X1900 owners are having the same issues.

    But their "replace hardware" logic could work to your advantage, actually. Since Apple-shipped graphics card AND their OS X drivers are, ummm...Apple's responsibility, I would investigate your state's lemon law. In most jurisdictions, if a product has to be repaired more than three times for the same problem, the vendor either has to buy it back at the original selling price or replace it with the most comparable product available.
     
  3. toke lahti macrumors 68000

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    Apr 23, 2007
    Location:
    Helsinki, Finland
  4. Dark Dragoon macrumors 6502a

    Dark Dragoon

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2006
    Location:
    UK
    #4
    Do you clean out the air intake on the X1900XT card?

    I used to have an X1900XT in my Mac Pro, it exhibited exactly the same corruption in WoW. Though the corruption on the desktop was different, I had lots of horizontal lines, nearing the end it also stopped outputting sometimes (blank screen) and caused kernel panics.

    The X1900XT's air intake tends to get clogged with dust causing it to overheat and become damaged. This is what happened to mine, it started out with minor graphical glitches and ended up with frequent kernel panics.

    As getting my Mac Pro to Apple would have cost more than the graphics card I bought the HD2600XT as a replacement which cured all the problems.

    There have been quite a few reports of overheating and glitches with the X1900XT.
    Apple Discussion Board 1
    Apple Discussion Board 2
     
  5. Washuu thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2008
    #5
    The lemon law really does not apply to Apple's products though from what I know of the laws. I have heard stories about people nicely asking for it and I could try that route if it came down to it.

    I really doubt that would be the issue. Most power related issues would be detected by power management and just prevent the computer from working correctly.

    I keep the card clean and make sure the other components are clean all the time.

    I have read those threads before and have kept track of the issues on the WoW forums as well.
    http://forums.worldofwarcraft.com/thread.html?topicId=94000596&sid=1&pageNo=1
     
  6. NATO macrumors 68000

    NATO

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2005
    Location:
    Northern Ireland
    #6
    My 1900XT got flakey after a while, ended up having it replaced twice due to graphical corruption and freezing, I blame it on a bad heatsink design (especially as it had a tendency to clog with dust and overheat).

    My solution was to buy the GeForce 8800GT card, it's been rock solid :)
     
  7. apfhex macrumors 68030

    apfhex

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2006
    Location:
    Northern California
    #7
    What rock have you been hiding under? ;) Us X1900 XT owners have been complaining about this issue for a long time and was part of the reason we were so adamant in demanding the 8800GT for 1st gen Mac Pros. I've already had mine replaced once, and plan to replace it with the 8800GT or 3870 soon enough.

    Don't bother having Apple replace the card any more times. Get one of the other cards — the X1900 XTs are faulty by design.
     
  8. Washuu thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2008
    #8
    I can not afford one. I have been sitting on top of the rock upset that I can not have the issue fixed with out spending money.

    It would be nice if Apple just swapped me one of those cards as a reasonable replacement.
     
  9. agentphish macrumors 65816

    agentphish

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2004
    #9
    I think you should complain hardcore to applecare phone support. It's known about by many people and I'm sure if you search around you can find many threads to support your case. Ask to speak to executive support or something. You could try the old sjobs email trick as well.

    In the end, if you maintain your persistence, you will get an upgrade for a discount or free. That is what I have found w/ Apple.
     
  10. CaptainChunk macrumors 68020

    CaptainChunk

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2008
    Location:
    Phoenix, AZ
    #10
    Where in your laws does it specifically state that Apple (or any other computer manufacturer by extension, apparently) is exempt from lemon law? Like you were saying though, I'd start first by nicely asking Apple to replace your card with a different product that works, seeing that you are on your FOURTH X1900. It seems ridiculous that a lot of people experiencing this same thing ultimately submitted and spent more money to get a card that works. It ain't right.

    So by this logic, the solution is to spend money to get a card that actually works? Under warranty, that's unacceptable to the consumer. If I spent over $2k on a Mac Pro, I'd expect it to work, just as I would expect my $30,000 car to work. And in the event that a product under warranty DOESN'T work, it's the manufacturer's responsibility to make sure it does. If that means replacing the current X1900 with a corrected part, it apparently should have happened months ago (like an HD 2600XT, perhaps?). At the very least, they should at least offer a fair trade-up price to get into a 8800 GT. It's already bad enough that we have to pay 2-3x as much for graphics cards as PC users do.
     
  11. Washuu thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2008
    #11
    The last time I check Pennsylvania's lemon laws still only cover new vehicles and the computer lemon law was still in the proposal stage. I am still going to nicely pester them about replacing it.
     
  12. jshbckr macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2007
    Location:
    Minneapolis, MN
    #12
    Is there any way that Apple would replace the X1900XT with the 8800GT card?

    How big is the price difference between these two models of cards?
     
  13. Washuu thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2008
    #13
    If you buy them as new upgrade kits...
    ATI Radeon x1900 XT - $400
    nVIDIA GeForce 8800 GT - $280

    Try to figure that one out for making sense. If the card dies again out of warranty then my repair option is cheaper.
     
  14. apfhex macrumors 68030

    apfhex

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2006
    Location:
    Northern California
    #14
    Very well then. :) I didn't intend to sound rude, but I think there will be no end to your troubles until you ditch the X1900 XT. It would be nice — not just nice, but incredible — if Apple would replace it with one of the other cards, but I certainly wouldn't hold my breath.
     
  15. SmurfBoxMasta macrumors 65816

    SmurfBoxMasta

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2005
    Location:
    I'm only really here at night.
    #15
    lemon
    lemon
    lemon.......

    Check with your state's Attorney General's Office for specifics on the lemon laws......every one of the 8 states I have lived in over the years has them, and they all applied to ALL consumer products........period

    Also enlist the help of the local chapter of the BBB, as well as your state's Consumer Affairs Dept, which may or may not be a seperate part of the AG's office.

    1st thing: Send a firm but polite email to: sjobs@apple.com. Keep it short and to the point, and simply ask for his assistance in resolving this problem

    And when calling Apple, don't be afraid to A) Ask to speak to whatever supervisor has the authority to resolve this issue, B) mention the fact that you have emailed the bossman, C) tell them that you have contacted the above agencies for assistance in resolving your COMPLAINT, and let them know in no uncertain terms that you have every intention of pursuing it unless you get a satisfactory resolution NOW, not tomorrow or next week or next month, NOW.

    BE FIRM, BUT POLITE, DONT LOSE YOUR COOL, but make your demands clear and precise, and most of all: DO NOT TAKE NO for an answer.....:p
     
  16. borcanm macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2008
    #16
    Great news, Apple will be replacing faulty x1900XT cards. Now lets hope does the same with all the X1600 cards as well.
     
  17. Bassix macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2009
  18. Washuu thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2008
    #18
    Sadly the newer, but still faulty card I have no longer has the selected serial number.
     

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