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Model A1286. Released February 2011 / 2.0, 2.2, or 2.3 GHz Quad-core Intel Core i7 Processor

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Replacing motherboard MacBook Pro 15" early 2011

MacBook Pro 15" Unibody Early 2011 A1286

Hi there,

I'm having problems with my macbook and if it seems the problems lays with my motherboard i might consider changing it.

I don't want to buy a new one although my macbook is 3.5 years old. I've replaced the HDD with an SSD and upgraded the 1333mhz 4GB RAM with 8GB RAM, so it runs super smooth like a new computer.

I was wondering if i could replace motherboards from for example a macbook (non-retina) mid 2012 into my current macbook. I'm thinking the shape and ports and the location of the ports is the same. I know i would have to get new RAM since it is a differente MhZ-speed.

Any comments? :)


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Please give us the last four figures of your serial number so we know your exact machine. Also please tell us why you think the logic board is bad.


Hi, my serial number ends with: 'YUDRJC'.

Well i had some water damage! And now my screen isn't working. The thing is, i can see the image but the backlight is malfunctioning. I want to determine if it is the screen which is broken or for example the backlight-chip on the motherboard.

If it is the chip (which computerstores claim cannot be repared) i (maybe) want to replace the motherboard. A newer model can cost less. And i don't want to pay 2000 euros for a new macbook pro (with retina) because there everything is glued and nothing can be changed.


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This is an 820-2915 board from 2011. No we do NOT pay to replace the board in this machine! This is a waste of money!

You run GPUtest and prime95 all day long until the GPU dies, then you take it to Apple for them to replace this $@$* board for free.

Then the moment you get it back fixed, at no cost to you, you sell it and put that money towards a new machine.

You spend $2000 or $3000 for a top of the line product, you do not deserve to be stuck with a lemon piece of trash board just because Apple wants you to buy a new machine. Get your money back from this one.

You can fit an 820-3330 board in there, which comes with a next generation ivy bridge processor(upgrade from sandy bridge processor), a superior GPU that doesn't die for no reason, and a much cooler system with better battery life. The only jerry rigging required here is trying to get the older LVDS cable to fit into the newer connector properly, this is a nightmare. In this case you are spending $700 of your own money for a minor upgrade, which I do not think is a good idea at all.

I strongly suggest going the route of properly murdering your malfunctioning machine, then giving it to Apple to fix for free, then reselling it and using that money to buy a Retina. You have to murder it because they will sell you a GTFO and use ANY EXCUSE AT THEIR DISPOSAL to not cover you under the extended warranty program. This is how Apple works, the focus is on their wallet and bottom line not what is fair to the user that gave them three thousand dollars. So that GPU has to be dead and proper &&^&@@ before you go o the store.

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Wow, i did not know that. I do have the distorted image often when i open a big pdf, which i do often make (student architect).

But i don't want a Retina. Doesn't allow us to change things. :)


Like what? You're stuck at 16 gb of ram with what you have now anyway, and the PCI express SSD, while proprietary, is faster than any sata $@$* you can buy. The best changes you can do with the older models, at best, equal, at worst, are worse than what you can do with the retina.


I can follow what you say, but i don't have the money 2.250 euros for a new machine and i don't like the policy where everything is stuck and non changable. :)


I have been running Furmark for like 12 hrs now (late 2011 MBP) but nothing has changed yet. I have a motherboard issue and Apple told me if I can get the graphics card to malfunction I'll get it switched for free. Any ideas on how to manage this?


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The water damage negates Apple being at fault here. Did you check your serial number at the link Louis gave you.

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The water damage make the case of the malfunctioning on Aplles behave non valid, i guess. So it is something good to know, but i won't help me in this case.

I do have the distorted image sometimes, which isn't related to the water damage, but not an issue right now i guess. :)


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Hey guys, i have this Macbook Pro 15 model 2011, i read much about it & i know they have a GPU problem which i have, & that it is a free logicboad replacable, so any idea whom to contact & how. it is a manufacturer malfunction

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I had this problem, I had my mbp atended for it, and the Logic Board replaced . After the 90 day warranty period expired ... it started failing, and I am just cruising forums to see if I find solutions or similar problems. It seems pretty bad, because now I took the laptop to an authorized dealer and service... And the test doesn't show the problem..they see it happening, but the test.... I have a sad theory that Apple just made some $@$*!& replacement and made it so the test wouldn't make it in the programme again...I hope I can find something, or some way to get some money for this one to get the ridicusly expensive Mbps from last year.... Hate this.

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michielbogaert will be eternally grateful.
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