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A1708/EMC 3164 — Released June 2017, this entry-level MacBook Pro retains its traditional function keys (as opposed to the OLED Touch Bar).

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2017 MacBook Pro 1708 - one of the USB-C ports is unreliable

I have a 13” 2-port Macbook pro (non-touchbar) where one of the USB-C ports is unreliable. Sometimes I can connect an external screen to it, sometimes a simple flash drive works. Other times it doesn’t. Sometimes it helps if I rotate the USB-cable. Today I actually successfully made it charge through that port - I had previously given up on that…

The other port seems to be working just fine, however I do recall once or twice where I had to take the plug out and try it again.

I know that this version has the ports soldered to the motherboard so I’m not going for that repair myself. But does the problem come from the ports themselves or could it be the chip ‘behind’ them? How can I determine this?

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The diagnostic process isn’t always so cut and dry.

Sometimes we just don’t have a means to test things so precisely remotely. In this case if it’s the chip or the connector the action is the same, replace the logic board. Sadly, there is no means to isolate out any deeper without having direct access to the system to do deeper tests, and even then the likelihood of repair is not very good if either component is damaged.

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Is it not possible on this model to solder either a new port or chip or both instead of replacing the logic board?

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The port assembly is a through-hole design which is very hard to unsolder without a hot air station and a good micro vacuum system to suck out the solder.

The chip would require a rework station with a heat plate and controllable heat source. 95% of repair shops won't have this expensive tool. Even then you still need the replacement part. I haven't seen any source for this custom chip.

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I saw one of Louis Rossman's videos where he said something about that if one of the chips are bad all of the ports will behave badly. In the specific video he was referencing a 4-port MBP with touch-bar. Will this also be the case with mine?

(I'm wishing for it to be a faulty port instead of the chip)

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I feel your pain... While I respect Louis skills, It's not that simple. We have seen a few single port failures on the TB systems which was chip related. Even if it was the port part its self, Through-hole parts are not designed to be replaceable.

I can't change how Apple designed this system. Since 2016 the MacBook Pro's are just less serviceable.

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