No display in MacBook Pro – NVIDIA graphics processor failed

Mbp 15Suddenly my MacBook Pro failed to wake up from it’s sleep. I thought it’s one of those problems which gets fixed after a hard reboot, but I was wrong! There’s no display after several power cycles. My MBP is one and half years old and I regretted not buying an apple care. Pressed the power button and turned it on again, it chimes, and after a while I could increase/decrease volume using the keyboard, but there’s no display.

After Googling a for a while I found about MacBook Pros with faulty Nvidia GPU.

Apple has determined that some MacBook Pro computers with the NVIDIA GeForce 8600M GT graphics processor may be affected. If the NVIDIA graphics processor in your MacBook Pro has failed, or fails within two years of the original date of purchase, a repair will be done free of charge, even if your MacBook Pro is out of warranty.

Good – I thought, if that’s the case it’ll be a free repair. My MacBook Pro fitted all the descriptions, but I decided to do some further troubleshooting myself as per apple’s recommendation, tried external display and even changed the RAM (I had the original 2GB RAM, which I’d upgraded few months back to 4GB). Finally called apple, and the support guy asked me to take my MBP to apple store to be seen by a Genius.

I made an appointment with a Genius in Apple Store, Bentall Centre. A friendly Genius took my MBP in to do some test (they’ve a special test for nvidia issue) and came back to tell me that the logic board was faulty. I told him that the OS is actually booting, only the display is not working. Showed him that the volume key works, but he told me that volume key actually works without the OS (but I was not so sure). So, finally he gave me a £771.65 repair estimate quotation for the logic board replacement. I came back with my MBP and was already thinking about buying a new one.

Back at home, I turned on the MBP again and left it on for a while, I could see it joining the wireless access point and could even ping it’s ip address from another pc. At this point I was pretty much convinced that it’s not the logic board but only display problem. I booked another session with Apple Genius, but this time in a different store at White City. Showed my MBP to this Genius, explained him what happens. He said – he’ll need to do one test, booted my MBP using an external hard disk and told me “Yes, it’s a NVIDIA issue, we’ll repair it free of charge”.

So, apple took exactly 2 weeks to repair my MBP, the logic board was replaced. The receipt shows £771.65, but with payment method – “No Charge”. I’m glad to have this fixed free of charge (was nearly duped into paying £771.65 or even buying a new MBP).

If you have a MacBook Pro with display problem it’s very likely to be a NVIDIA issue even if one Genius says it’s not!

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Posted in Apple, Technology, UK
8 comments on “No display in MacBook Pro – NVIDIA graphics processor failed
  1. Woooww — that is amazing. Great customer service with Apple Genius at White City. I can only imagine the relief of getting it repaired completely free of charge and saving yourself the hassle of getting a completely new computer and starting over from scratch!

  2. You’re right, it was a great relief and excellent service at White City!

  3. Augustine says:

    HI i had the same problem, went to office on Friday morning and turned on the MBP and there was no display. I live in Uganda, East Africa where there are no apple stores just agents who have to get advice from another dealership overseas, i cant afford a new one right now. Mr. Apple Genius at white City please advice because its like my right hand has been cut off. Thanks

  4. Hi Augustine, I can understand your frustration. When did you buy the MBP?

  5. N says:

    Try wherever you bought it from – perhaps they can pay for shipping too, if it’s a distance away… Failing that perhaps you could buy a logic board spare and fit it yourself – there are instructions here: http://www.ifixit.com/MacBook-Parts/MacBook-Pro-17-Inch-Model-A1151-2-16-GHz-Logic-Board/IF187-003

  6. Blue Laptop says:

    Now THAT’s great customer service. That’s such a great value given away with no charge it almost makes me wanna induce some problems into a Macbook just to experience this. 😀

  7. jigme says:

    I love mac but it is annoying to see frequent problem with screen.iBook, Macbook and even macbook pro have all the same problem with screen.

  8. John says:

    Had same problem, took it to a Apple repair company in Dublin.they said, no, it’s the logic board and quoted me €994 for a fix!!! I wasn’t convinced after doing a lot of online research on this. Brought it to my local repair shop, (non-authorised repair shop), in the South of Ireland where I live and they said, yes, it’s a graphics issue and subsequently fixed it for €190.

    I rang apple to explain that it was misdiagnosed and that I believed that apple repair were pulling a fast one on me and trying to get money from me by hopefully buying a new computer and they should cover the cost. They wouldn’t accept this and said I should have got a second opinion from another authorised repair shop. Like I have the time to be traipsing around this island to get opinions for apple’s convenience? Terrible support! Folks, ‘always’ get a second opinion! (Ps. I’m on my girlfriend’s macbook writing this – my graphics have gone belly-up again! Bummer!

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