Reseated RAM, blank screen, beeping every 5 secs. tried everything ...

Hi all,

This is my first time posting on here, so excuse the inner noobness.

I decided to clean the fan out, I thought I would have a look at the RAM stick so I removed it and then re-inserted it... Upon hitting the power button, I didn't get the normal chime; just a blank screen, and a beep every 5 seconds.

What is happening:

  • Hard drive makes a sound - like it is doing something for a few secs after powering on
  • Fan runs the whole time (it runs quietly)
  • It beeps every 5 seconds - I know that this is related to no ram sticks being detected
  • The standby light flashes (as it beeps)
  • The screen stays blank
  • Battery charges

What isn't happening:

  • Everything
  • It won't boot up
  • Caps lock doesn't light up
  • It won't chime

What I have tried:

  • I have unplugged the battery and held down the power button (to try and drain the motherboard)
  • I have attempted to do a Pram reset
  • Attempted to do a SMC reset

The list goes on... however post your thoughts regardless of if I have done it :)

Side notes:

It has been well looked after and was running fine prior to dumb me removing the RAM stick and cleaning the fan.

It has two RAM sticks, both aren't being recognized. I have tried new RAM (admittedly 1600 MHz RAM).

Any help is so so very much appreciated.

Answered! View the answer I have this problem too

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Here's a good Apple T/N writeup on the different tones: About Mac computer startup tones.

And here is more on the RAM error codes: Intel-based Mac Power On Self Test RAM error codes

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First use the correct RAM for your machine:

RAM Type: PC3-10600 DDR3 Min. RAM Speed: 1333 MHz

Details: Supports 1333 MHz PC3-10600 DDR3 SDRAM.

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Hi Mayer, I have already tried the original ram, is there anything I should reset ? e.g. Pram reset etc ? Or was your answer implying that I should purchase some ram that is guaranteed compatible ? Thanks :)

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I don't know the history of the machine so I don't know if it had the correct RAM to stat off with.

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Your Logicboard can't read the RAMs. The Boot-EFI say it to you with the beeping.

Just to make sure: are you using the same RAMs like you are using before?

Try and unplug both RAM-chips again and plug then in (carefully). Make sure they are complete in. Usually the click in.

Start your Mac. You don't have to make a SMC or VRAM reset.

If your Mac doesn't turn on. You RAM chips are faulty and you need new ones. Maybe you touched them without ESD protection.

Let me know if this was helpful

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Hi, thanks for replying :). I am using the ram from before, now, I do admit that I was very foolish and took apart on a blanket (of which I bet is highly static). So yeah, I guess I have probably fried both ram sticks. I have tried it with a new ram stick but it isn't a Macbook certified one and is 1600MHZ not 1333MHZ, should I still buy ram for it ? Thanks, Barney

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Also, the ram does still work in a different laptop, is it still likely the ram being zapped that is at fault ? Thanks

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if the ram works in a different macbook then the chip is ok and probably you haven't put the chips complete into the sockets of the logic board. Try again with your ram - removing and put it in again. If the peeps comes up again, then the chips are faulty. Maybe they could run with a different laptop (windows machine?).

If you want to use a new ram stick you can use 1600 Mhz but make sure they have 204 pins and they are the type PC3-12800 DDR3 1600 MHz.

Also important to know: if you use two ram sticks, they both needed the same specifications 2x 4 GB or 2x2 GB DDR3

Let me know if this was helpful and it works

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Hi there, I tried it with two 1600MHZ DDR3 ram sticks from a working windows laptop - still no luck.

Of note, the bottom ram slot has a little less tension when inserting the ram ??? Should I buy some new official macbook ram or just sell the laptop as is ?

Is it possible that the logic board could be dead ? Or are the beeps, flashing standby light etc a sign that it isn't dead?

I am fairly knowledgeable with laptops, the laptop thinks it isn't seeing ram, even when the ram is fine, I am just a little lost tbh.

Any further help is much appreciated Steffen, I will definitely recommend you if we can sort this ;)

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sorry I was wrong with the type of RAM!! You should use this type of ram sticks: PC3-10600 DDR3 1333 MHz type RAM (see also: https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT201165)

Your Logic board should be ok - otherwise it wouldn't beep and the fan won't turn on.

I suggest you try only one ram stick - plug it in and check what will happen when you turn on the Mac. If your system starts booting, this ram stick is ok. If not, try the other one. But not the ram stick from your windows device! If you are not successful with this test, there are two options: try and error with buying new ram sticks who are supported with Macs or bring it into an Apple Service Provider. They check your complete system with Apple Service Toolkit - MRI

I hope we solve this problem ;-)

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Barney Kelly will be eternally grateful.
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