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A1418 / EMC 2833 / Late 2015 / 3.1 GHz Core i5 or 3.3GHz Core i7 Processor. Released October 13, 2015.

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Lines in monitor after opening

So after about 2 years of dealing with my crazy slow iMac. I decided to open it up and replace the HDD with an SSD drive to give more power and better performance.

After swapping the drives and putting everything back together, on first power up turned on okay. But now I've noticed some vertical lines in the screen. (Links are the pictures. Now it is a screen issue because I, can screen shot the screen and the lines do not show upon moving the picture around.

I did notice even at first opening the screen, which I was careful about. I noticed one of the two cords that you're to disconnect before lifting the screen away completely (the one nearest to the camera/top side of computer) was a little......turned? ripped? not sure how to explain it.

So I'm wondering if the ribbon that I am describing is the issue, and if it is replaceable at all. Everything works 100% fine on the computer performance wise, the only issue is these lines now. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Nathan Rojas

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Sorry to say lines are always a damaged display assembly ;-{

It's very easy to damage it in the process of taking it off. You need to use a special cutter so as not to dig to deep as well as nick the inside edge of the display panel as the fine wires are easily cut.

Think how a cloth is woven the wharf & weave (X & Y) the intersection of the two lines come together to make the liquid crystals alter the light from the backlight to make the pixel appear.

Here the vertical lines got damaged so the columns effected are not active hence black.

Time for a new display which will also replace the damaged ribbon cable.

  • [linked product missing or disabled: IF173-048]
  • [linked product missing or disabled: IF173-005] which has the cutter

You'll also want these for the next time:

Here's the IFIXIT guide which goes through the process: iMac Intel 21.5" Retina 4K Display Replacement. I use the picks as I go around to help remind me what sides I've done (I get interrupted a lot so this helps) The larger cards help in the lifting once I've fully released the adhesive bond - I don't pry! I lift!

Trust me I've killed a few displays before the guide was published and haven't killed one since following it.

Plastic Cards Image


Plastic Cards


iFixit Opening Picks (Set of 6) Image


iFixit Opening Picks (Set of 6)


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Hello Dan,

Thank you for you observation and your input on my question. I used pretty much everything similar to what as far as tools you recommended. I just used stuff I had laying around the house thought. I used a guitar pick, and a few old credit cards that I had laying around to break from the adhesive.

Im no entirely sure what you mean by “You need to use a special cutter so as not to dig to deep as well as nick the inside edge of the display panel as the fine wires are easily cut.” Which wires are you talking about? The ribbons that connect to the motherboard?

Did I damage the sides of the LSC monitor? Or is it the actual cable connecting to the mother board? I’m kind of confused…


Nathan Rojas


Here's the pizza cutter tool: iMac Opening Wheel.

Sadly, the tiny wires are on the glass panel (vapor deposited) along the edge of the display panel then a mylar ribbon cable is bonded to the glass on the back side to carry the signals to the controller board which is under the metal shield on the back of the assembly. Here's a good YouTube vid of someone tearing apart an LCD display: Dissecting an LCD TV panel


Ahhhh I understand now....kind of haha I'm going to take it to a local repair shop tomorrow that I know of down in town, and get a second opinion, not saying that yours was not helpful. But just want to see also how much they would charge me to replace it. As I feel a little un experienced performing the operation myself again. Don't want $400 to go to waste. So thank you for you input on this! I appreciate it!


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