2.2 GHz (Turbo Boost up to 3.4 GHz) or 2.5 GHz (Turbo Boost up to 3.7 GHz) quad-core Intel Core i7 processor with 6MB shared L3 cache.

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Randomly shuts down when not connected to an external display.

Hi, this is my first post on ifixit so bare with me.

About a couple of months ago i was away from home and my Macbook randomly shut itself down. It kept on doing this so i did a bit of googling and thought it may of been the heatsink not keeping the CPU cool enough so it went into protect mode and shut down. I took my mac apart and saw that the heatsink wasn't looking too great so i decided to change it just incase that was the problem.

After fitting the new heat sink the problem went away. Since then I've been using my macbook pro as a desktop. Connected to an external display with a keyboard and mouse. The problem hasn't been happening. Great! Or so i thought until the other evening when i removed my laptop from my desk and tried using it elsewhere.

I've troubleshooted the SMC, reinstalled OSX, tried it in safe mode (Which worked), tried a new user account, disconnected everything one by one to see whether something triggers it... Nothing but disconnecting the external display seems to trigger it to happen.

So in brief. My macbook will only run for about 10 seconds without an external display before the screen goes black and the keyboard lights and fans stay on then turns off.

Please help if you can.



UPDATE 10/6/2016


I ve been having this issue for 3 months since theirs no apple store near me i have no other solution

My macbook pro keep on shuting down randomly , i ve suspected the motherboard but since last month i ve used it connected to a 32" monitor via hdmi it havent shutdown since works fine

Can anybody help ?

Answer this question I have this problem too

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Please tell us exactly which machine you have, there are known issues on different machines.


MacBook Pro (Retina, 15-inch, Mid 2014)


@danj is more up to date on this model than I am.


Dominique dis u get yours fixed ? Im having the same trouble macbook pro retina late 2013


Dom, did you get this fixed? Mine is doing the same thing.


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I have the same issue with my MacBook Pro 15 Mid 2014.

The only way to use the MacBook without the shutdown problem is using an external display or a HDMI dummy plug like this:


It is a hardware defect on the logic board, probably the i7 Processor with intel Iris Graphics. Maybe its the smc circuit.

On Windows, I thought, I had no problems. But I saw some times the display goes black for 1/10 of a second.

So I believe, it is the defect of the Onboard Graphic.

My Problem occurred, when I used dolphin Nintendo WII emulator, which leads to 100% CPU usage und the fan full power. I think, the MacBook went too hot and this caused the damage.

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I have solved it completely by reapplying thermal paste of the cpu.

There was only about 50% covered with thermal paste.

Not one sudden shutdown since then.

It is easy, just put off the heatsink and reapply thermal paste.

About one hour, and all is done.

I couldn't believe ist, but it works!


Thanks Ulrich. Any guess why this problem doesn't occur when the Macbook is connected to an external display?


Higher thermal limit with connected Display or plug and cable cools down a bit


Hi Ulrich. Just tried this and it didn't work for me :(. Was easy enough to do and also removed a lot of dust in the fans but it made no difference. Currently using a HDMI dummy and it isn't too bad, at least I now have some portability so thanks for that suggestion. Exact same Macbook Pro (15-inch, i7 Mid 2014), exact same problem but it seems the solution didn't work for me. Hmmm?


Hi Dave, sorry to hear. I decided to use arctic Silver no5. What paste did you use? It is very important not to apply too much paste, less is more. Because it worked for me, I still think, the problem is an emergency shutdown because of too much heat. This is the key. Maybe it makes sense to try it again with the right paste and the right amount of paste? My Macbook still run´s fine!


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Lets try this, download this free app: CoconutBattery.

With the system plugged in with your MagSafe power adapter take a screenshot of the main screen then disconnect the MagSafe adapter and take a second after at least 10 mins of being unplugged. Post them here so we can see them.

I'm suspecting your battery is going here or the battery charging logic has a problem. The issue of the display winking out is related as the system is going into power save mode and the system will then go into deep sleep.

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I can only guess, but to me it sounds like the magnetic sensor that indicates your lid is closed is damaged. It goes into sleep but if your monitor is plugged in, nothing happens (as expected). Problem is that the resistor is on the logic board. It is going to be expansive if you do not know much about soldering and that stuff :-/

A workaround would be to go to settings and change the option when the lid is closed to do nothing

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Hello everyone!

I'm having the same issue with my MacBook Pro 15 inch (mid 2014, no external GPU).

Laptop keeps shutting down randomly when not connected to external monitor via HDMI cable.

I've tried almost everything Apple Support suggested me:

- Reinstall OSX in three different ways.

- Reset PRAM

- Reset SMC

- Disable Energy saving mode

This bug appeared after latest update to 10.13.2. Support keeps saying that I have to replace the whole motherboard which is a price of half of my laptop.

Does anyone have a solution? I'm confident that it is a software bug.

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Reapply thermal paste. See Posting above


If Ulrich's suggestion doesn't work for you then you can also try running this Python script, it worked for me when reapplying thermal paste didn't: https://gist.github.com/davej/b3c56a3713...


Another solution is to disable the Thunderbolt-Ethernet-Driver, which seems to work in all cases:




I can confirm that disabling AppleThunderboltNHI.kext worked for me. Almost at 36 hours uptime. I didn't want to comment until I could confirm it worked.


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If i were you i would do a reflow of the board i had a problem with a mid 2014 imac that was getting no power to the no 1 diagnostic led it would flicker sometimes so i did a reflow in the general area of the LED and it worked. typing on the machine right now

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Hello again!

Here is an update on my problem with my macbook.

I gave it to official Apple Service Center and they ran some diagnostics on it. No hardware problems were found. They've ran a stress-test with 24 hours of Final Cut X rendering.

So, now I'm even more confident that it is some kind of software bug and the problem has nothing to do with overheating.

Now Apple Support keeps telling me that it is "something with your motherboard", but they can't tell me any specific details. May be Apple is aware of this bug and just denying it? Has anyone managed to get some adequate response from Apple?

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Dominic Fullick will be eternally grateful.
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