MBP A1226 Logic Board last resort fix for nVidia video chip

I turned mine in to Apple for evaluation. I was told it was indeed affected by a bad nVidia chip, but was also told the serial number on the nVidia chip is out of range for their quality program.

The MBP chimes. The keyboard backlight activates. I can adjust the speaker volume. I can adjust the keyboard backlight brightness. I can eject optical disks.

I'm considering baking the BGA back into place. I have a small toaster oven. I have aluminum foil. I have a heat gun. I even have blue Fun-Tak for protecting certain parts (it was featured in an XBox 360 fix using a heat gun).

I'd love to know the best way to bake the board with respect to:

- proper equipment (kitchen over, heat gun, toaster oven, something else?)

- protecting the other parts on the logic board

- temperature and duration

- cooling procedure

Thanks for reading!

Update

I can confirm Matthew's fix. It worked not only for the MacBook Pro featured in the original posting, but also for another MBP which exhibited similar symptoms.

The originally featured MBP actually failed to chime. I completely wrapped it in a quilt, let it sit upside-down, and played Halo for 1:45. I made a point to disturb the MBP as little as possible as I unwrapped the quilt. Yes, the underside was very hot. I let it cool down on its own. Afterwards, I was able to reset the PRAM (by holding down the power button) and was able to boot up the MBP. Subsequent sessions degraded the video. It went from working perfectly to displaying only the top third of the screen to completely reverting to its previous bad state. One more session in the hot quilt fixed that. The MBP behaves as expected, and the only quirk exhibits itself when the MBP runs without a battery - the Magsafe LED would blink sometimes or not activate at all. So far, I have been able to work around it by inserting a battery.

The second MBP also failed to chime, but I heard a fan, and wrapped it in the quilt (acrylic yarn), heated it up and let it cool naturally. It's essentially back to working order!

Update

Why does this keep getting bumped? You fix this by replacing the chip, period. No blankets, no heatguns, no reflows, no reballs. This is all BS! Someone please delete this $@$* https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uMG-6rba... before it poisons the mind of more people. :(

Answered! View the answer I have this problem too

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Hi All, I am putting this out there, since it worked for me.

Apple refuses to warranty this machine, since I changed the battery/hard drive on the machine as a user replaceable part. I hate you apple…

So If you have a video card issue, no need to put it in foil/oven/hot air gun or blankets to heat it up. I have a simpler solution!

Open up back cover and disconnect the 2 fans. Put the lid back, then turn it on and let it get to the bad video screen. Leave it on for a good 7-10 min and let it get hot. This will automatically solder reflow the chip without pulling it all apart and doing oven techniques.

I did a hair dryer reflow once and it worked, so I wondered why not let it heat up on its own without fans, the heat stays in and it has the same affect. This procedure makes it work for about 1 month. Then you need to do this again. I know it sucks, but disconnecting fans is easy and can be done repeatedly. I dont even screw in my back cover any more!

Screw you Apple for not supporting your hardware.

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It's much easier to replace the chip and be done with the problem. Why all of this screwing around when the repair is so inexpensive, and simple?

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33 Answers

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Since you have nothing to lose with this board, you may try the heat gun method to reflow the BGA.

First you'll need to cut a hole to expose the BGA chip. Then you'll need to cover the board with two sheets of aluminum foil. Slowly heat the entire board area, then concentrate the heat to the BGA. You may put some solder on the chip and when the solder melts on it then you continue to heat a little to be sure that the small solder balls under the chip are melting. Don't heat to much to avoid bridging the solder balls. After it's done don't move the board but let it cool for a while. You may have to redo the job until you get the result you want.

Good luck and let us know if it worked.

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You want to mimic the manufacturing process as closely as possible to get good and lasting results when you attempt to reflow the BGA. Use an IR thermometer of K thermistor so you know what the temperatures are and are not guessing at it. If you put a piece of solder on the chip to determine the temperature remember to use a solder wick to remove the solder or you will create a problem. Use "no clean flux" around the chip(s) to be reflowed. There are different stages with ramping up or down of temperatures. Flux flow and flux activation are stages observed with proper reflow techniques. You don't have these stages without flux. Most "back yard reflowers" lack of good, lasting or consistent results are because they just want to throw heat at the chip and not follow the science behind what they are doing.

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My mac book pro having logic board issue... I given to third party... And Now also its not working... Any hope fir apple support?

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@ aswathynairm3 - Sadly the time has come to put your trusted friend aside and get a new system. I haven't found the needed AMD GPU chip available from any of the trusted suppliers I know (Rev B chip) to fix mine. The Blanket trick people have tried and swear to (see below) does not really work long term. Apple has EoL this system so they too will not repair it. Sorry ;-{

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macbook pro A1260- i installed parallels and my old faithful reliable mac became a PMS'ing nightmare. I pulled the HD & deleted the parallels folder, slapped it back in -No light,no chime-sometimes a solid light I removed RAM & got beeps-YEAH So I tried overheating with blankets & that helped bring the Sleep light on but no chime up. I decided to pull the MotherBoard,I cleaned everything with canned air & alcohol, cleaned off the paste first & heated it up with my hair dryer & added new paste-I reset SMC, rest PRAM-- spontaneous shut downs! I reset PRAM again, installed SMC fan & left it running in front of fan for about 3 hours. Lo and behold my mac is back to her old self! HEAT GUN DOES WORK -If you watch the MB pros they say the machine & the fans need to be cleaned every 2-3 years. Thermal paste breaks down & no longer dissipates heat. So 3 things: cleaning, reheating and repasting. GOOD LUCK anyone trying to revive their MAC- DON'T GIVE up-These machines are made to last an eternity!

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This worked for me . I turned it upside down and wrapped in a blanket for about 20 minutes with the Magsafe connected and the power on . I let it cool down and I restarted it and it booted normally !!!

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After reading this thread, I came up with a longshot way to solve what seemed to be a bad logic board; I intentionally overheated the computer, while turned upside down.

My MBP 15 A1226 had signs of a bad logic board - the hard disk would sound on, the fan would start up, the MagSafe power indicator light was on, but the computer's 'power indicator light' (the one that normally pulsates when the comp's sleeping) would light up and glow steady, and the screen would remain completely dark and unlit. I tried suggested steps from iFixit, Apple, and macrumors (resetting PRAM, SMC, etc.) and there was no change in the computer's symptoms. This lasted a day.

What seems to have resolved it was this; plugged in the AC power, turned on the computer, closed it, turned it over, then put a folded-up quilt on top of it, and went downstairs and watched Pineapple Express. When I came back to it, I opened it, unplugged it, then turned it off. The power button was extremely hot and the fan was blowing very high. I held it in front of a fan and about a minute later pressed the power button and it booted up like normal.

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This is *Incredible*. I never thought it would work, but this evening my sister and I were looking for parts to recondition my old aluminium MacBook Pro that has been sitting broken and abandoned for at least 2 years in the vain hope that one day I might find a logic board for a decent price. The symptoms were exactly as described in many of the comments: what started as an occasional "flashing" screen eventually resulted in permanent black screen. With seemingly no solution I gave it up for dead, stored it away for a rainy day, and bought myself a shiny new Unibody.

So, tonight whilst searching we stumbled upon this page and read through the comments, and figured that since it had already been pronounced dead that it was at least worth a try. I mean, the worst that can happen is we fry a fried logic board, right?

So we plugged the machine in and wrapped it in a quilt upside down as instructed and left it for 30-40 minutes, after which we unwrapped and unplugged it and let it cool naturally for another 10-20 minutes. Then we plugged it back in, hit the power button...

...and it worked!

This thing was dead! I've been utterly beside myself all evening while setting it up for my Sister, who has so far only had to pay out for a power supply and a new battery. A significant saving to say the least.

I just wanted to post a response to express my sincere appreciation to not only those who took the time and effort to document this, but also those who returned to post their success stories. Considering my Sister's house was burgled just last week and her laptop stolen (causing not only a major inconvenience but also dealing her a severe mental and emotional blow), this evening was an incredible turnaround in so many ways. Thank you all so much.

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The magic blanket trick works, really. It is amazing. I was dreaded by symptoms of a black screen after the start up chime (or sometimes not even) for a few days before I discovered this method. One hour and a half later I removed a dangerously hot MBP from the comforts of the blanket in which it was wrapped and placed to nap upside down while plugged in. I let it cool briefly, and VOILA - screen fully functioning.

Aside from implied repair cost if for any reason the Mac store nvidia chip test failed, I saved over 24 hours of travel through airport terminals in two hemispheres to get to the nearest Mac store.

Thank You!

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Just amazing!! Thank you so much for helping me bring my Macbook Pro (A1226) back to life. I popped it into my bed upside down with a pillow on top, and a couple of heavy books to seal it nicely. With the power supply attached and switched on (well just the light in front on, no chime, black screen) it began to cook. 1h45 later, and after letting it cool again, it's now working!

I saved myself a £700 bill from the Apple Store. And they denied that the video card is at fault. Either way, it seems to be working for now (I am using my MBP to type this)....

THANKS AGAIN!!!

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I did the blanket trick just yesterday. A great opportunity for me to see Milk finally. The Book is up and running. Thanks, Matthew.

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I did the blanket over MBP on top of a radiator. 2 hours did the trick !!!

Screen started flaking out with pixellation then just freezing on the startup pinwheel and the gray screen...

24 hours later still...Mint !!!!

Thanks Matthew !!

If it doesn't work, here are other links:

http://russell.heistuman.com/2010/04/27/...

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Apple-Macbook-...?

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Baking is not a fix, baking just heats the chip up inside and futzes with the internals a little bit. The chip is still dead, and it is bad and will fail again. Baking is not a fix.

Replace it with a new one.

If we are talking about the AMD GPU problem from 2011, yes, that CPU has integrated graphics. The blanket fix is NOT about making the system use the integrated graphics, it is about heating it to 125c long enough for the chip to &&^& itself up inside that it works again.

If we are talking about the NVIDIA GPU problem from 2007-2008, there is no integrated graphics there whatsoever that you can switch to.

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I agree that baking is not a fix, still, don't believe everything you think. Please read the industry news about what causes this type of problem, especially this era of machine. The chips are good, they were transported improperly to the manufacturer causing oxidation on the chips' pads. End result the BGA didn't adhere properly to the chip. I am astounded by your knowledge of the inner-workings of the chips. You must have gone to school on this subject matter.

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This is untrue, the entire manner in which these pre 2009 NVIDIA chips were fabricated on the inside was faulty and why they fail but this is such a dead horse by 2015 there is no point discussing it. Reball it and when it dies a month later you'll have your answer.

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Have the hat and the tee-shirt. My nephew has enjoyed uninterrupted use of his laptop that I reballed in 2011 for him. He streams Netflix etc ... on a daily basis. Perhaps the timings I programed into the PLC I use for ramp and soak cycles, proper support for the board during such, among other things, played a part in that. Please explain to me how and/or why reflowing or reballing can "bring a chip back to life" if the chip isn't good to begin with. Reality tells me chips are either good or they are not. Either they have good electrical contact on all pads or they do not. There is no snake oil. If heat can fix a chip then it is fixed. In general though, if something is bad inside a chip, components are air wired in series or parallel to the leg(s) to correct the internal issue.

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Well you're both right here! NVIDIA had a bad run of chips. You need to use the Rev B chip. In addition Apples effort to be no Lead in their products created a soldering problem as the Tin would degrade (crystalized) under sustained high heat. Which is why you end up re-balling hopefully with a solder that has some Lead which protects the Tin from degrading. Even today many solder failures can be attributed to the lack of Lead with high heat circuits. Once the Tin has degraded you must remove all of the solder as you don't want the old solder to act as a seed for the Tin to re-crystalize around.

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If I wrap your plumbing piping in band aids and water flows through it for another few months, that doesn't mean I fixed it. If you heat up a flip chip BGA and it works again, it is dead. There are chips like Intel north & south bridges and CPUs where reballing makes sense because these chips do not have the same internal design issues that flip chip NVIDIA & AMD GPUs have. It is the internal bumps in the chip you are warping and moving back and forth when you heat it and once those start to go there is NO permanent fix besides tossing them in the trash.

You can mine litecoin on a Lenovo T520 for months with lead free solder, the solder is fine. Leaded can be more reliable than lead free but the real issue here is the chip.

The three reasons that people prefer the myth that the issue is in the solder balls are as follows

1) People in general are cheap. If you can bill a customer $50 less for the same job, they are more likely to say yes. Many bill the same whether or not the customer says yes so now technicians have a personal financial incentive to believe reballing/reflowing fixes the issue.

2) It is difficult to find known new, unused, good BGA chipsets. Reflowing & reballing reuses the old chipset so you cut this out of the equation.

3) No wait time. Reflow/reball can be done without a parts order so you can offer the customer a faster turnaround.

You will find most reflow/reball shops that do JUST that go out of business a year or two after their "boom" and have a trail of god awful reviews following their chargebacks.

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If you experience more problems, I would take the laptop back to another Apple store, or at least try to get another tech. Apple has become more and more generous recently with replacing these machines as it becomes obvious that the video issues are a massive epidemic. Personally I've taken at least 7-8 machines in, and I've never been rejected when there is a confirmed MacBook Pro GPU issue.

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UPDATE: The 4-year recall for Aluminum MacBook Pros with the Nvidia issue has run out for pretty much every machine. 2.4GHZ is done...there may be a chance with 2.5/2.6GHZ, but the window for those is quickly running out as well.

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Also, don't waste your time with heatguns or any of this other nonsense. You have a better chance of winning a million dollars in the lottery than you have of a repaired machine lasting more than a month. Unless you have a 10K rework machine, and the experience to use it (which, face it, none of us do).

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Such BS - I've had great success. True, they aren't 100% bullet proof, but I am typing this on a MBP that has been ghetto reflowed (heat gun) twice to great success. First time worked for over a year, this one has been going on 8 months.

Its obvious there was a flaw in the design of the laptop - maybe the nvidia chip, not enough cooling, probably a mix of the 2. Even with a new logic board, you'll still have a gimpy design that you need to mitigate as much as possible.

I blow out the dust regularly, used real fancy thermal paste, replaced a fan that seemed sketchy, monitor the GPU temps, and run one of the fan control plugins to keep the fans at 100% all the time. Remember, it happens because of overheating, so as long as it keeps cool it should last!

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The best solution is to reball or replace the nvidia G84-602-A2 (A1226) and it work. check my work.

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This process also works in A1260 using ATI X1600

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As a last resort fix for 2 MBP, a G5 Imac and a Ibook 4, I preheated a oven to 185 degrees F, put in the logic boards being very careful to ensure that they are as flat as possible. Ensure that all rubber parts and tapes are removed. Wrap the IO ports in Foil and any wires not removable from the logic brd (G5 had this). Bake logic board for 10 min and then switch off the oven to let the board cool. Half hour later reinstall the logic board and it all seems fine.

Not sure how long it will last but this seems to do the trick. All 4 computers up and running.

Ifixit repair manuals will help u get the logic board out and its helpful to have a ice tray to keep the screws in order.

Good luck guys.

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I would also try taking the machine to an apple authorized service provider or a different Apple store. They would just need to confirm the issue by running a Graphics Processor Test on the machine to see if it qualifies for repair.

Also Nvidia in a class action lawsuit is offering repairs on certain models of machines with the chip issue. Details are online at:

http://www.nvidiasettlement.com/

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Hold down the "D" upon start-up and the Mac will take you to a diagnostic boot-up, where it will run a "test". The results will idicate what failed and what passed. In this case, my "test" reported that my Graphics Processors failed.

Now, I'm trying the "blanket" trick before opening up the machine and attempting a heat gun and soldier repair.

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Hi all! 10/20/2013

I am a Japanese. I translate Japanese into an English sentence by translation software. I am sorry that it is not a correct English sentence. I may not follow a rule by the first contribution, but decide to show courage, and to contribute it.

I show my repair method to everybody. It is unscreened in Japan.

There are two causes not to start.

1.BGA chip

This repair method has been already shown.

2.ceramic condenser

As for the laminated ceramic condenser, deterioration gradually advances. Deterioration has a characteristic becoming faster in the high temperature and humid area.

This laminating ceramic condenser is installed to remove a noise mainly. Economy is lost when I install a lot it, and a PC price rises.

When the deterioration of the laminated ceramic condenser advances, PC movement becomes unstable. Furthermore, a PC does not start when I advance.

In the example "that I did not have any problem until the day before, but did not start the next day", it might rain. When a laminating ceramic condenser becoming the high temperature gets cold, the water-rich air gets inside. Therefore, the capacitance of the laminated ceramic condenser decreases. When capacitance decreases, a CPU does not work normally because a noise becomes big. In other words, it does not start.

The repair due to heat gun is the repair method that is good because the deterioration of the ceramic condenser is improved. However, the PC does not start again several months later.

A radical solution is to add a ceramic condenser to a main board.

I prepare 4-6 condensers of 6.3V100μF.

The noise of the CPU decreases by adding this to a certain place.

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The insulation is heat-resistant, and the one side adhesive tape of superior polyimide is necessary for this work.

I can perform the masking such as boards, protection, the insulation easily. The durability temperature in the practical use reaches around 260 degrees Celsius.

The ceramic condenser block use the solder having high melting point. Work becomes easy by using the solder having low melting point when I attach a ceramic condenser block to a main board.

Even other models think that many problems are solved by similar measures.

Poor IC of TPS51120 attached to the bottom of the right fan is more likely to produce the PC of a no power. Only a high engineer can change skill.

Finally there is a request from me.

You purchase new mac, and it is free or is inexpensive and provides it to people who cannot purchase mac where repair ended in, and let's open mac world.

The thing which is not broken is not a product forever. The controlled dissatisfaction promotes the purchase of a new product.

I pray for good luck visiting all of you to see this.

I add a postscript to a sentence 10/22/2013

My repair method only heats GPU.

A thing to set up is a solder flux.

1. I pour a solder flux around GPU.

2. I wait for 2-3 minutes until a solder flux attaches to the whole GPU.

3. Because an extra flux flows out when I make an air blow around GPU, I wipe this off

4. I heat GPU for a heat gun.

5. The temperature of the GPU circumference seems to reach it to around 190-200 degrees Celsius and adjusts the position of heat gun with an infrared thermometer. Because parts of the back side drop when I heat more than 200 degrees Celsius, I am careful.

6. If it becomes 200 degrees Celsius and passes for 30 seconds, I make a heat gun a ventilation mode.

7. I wait to turn off a heat gun, and to fall to normal temperature.

8. I install it again

It is the best method to change GPU. However, I may repair even this method.

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Attach a ceramic condenser of 100μF 6.3V to logic board to obtain a happy result. This condenser will bring happiness to you.

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When the condenser block to make the high-melting-point solder order 5 pieces ceramic condenser. Use low-melting-point solder attaching to the logic board. well look at photos of the logic board. and small ceramic condenser logic board soldering in parallel.

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hi .. where I can get ceramic condenser of 100μF 6.3V from ? I think I have same problem . thanks

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I seem to have fixed my MacBook Pro yesterday, using a small iroda solderpro 50K. It's butane powered and by changing the tip you can make it into a small blowtorch.

Ran the flame just above the chip, moving it around for about 5 minutes. I put a bit of solder on top of the chip to give me an idea of how much heat I was applying. There are little pins protruding through the back of the green, larger part of the chip and I concentrated on those one by one, thinking that they should conduct the heat down to the solder and reflow it.

I was amazed when it worked. I'd been quoted over £300 by a repair company. It may break again but that could happen if I'd have gone with the repair company. Rather I was going to buy a new Mac, so I feel like I've saved myself £1,500.

I've installed smcFanControl to monitor how hot the computer is running. I ran this computer for a long time with poorly lubricated fans. It used to run burning hot so that may have been the reason that it went down originally, but I'm not sure.

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John, would you be kind enough to outline the problem you were having with your MBP? I have a MBP 15" 2.2 Ghz A1226 which suffered a very small liquid spill that didn't seem to do any damage for over 2 months. Randomly earlier this year the screen would turn off and then just wouldn't come back on. As the first post here describes, light's on, nobody's home. Genius bar says $3500 AU to replace Logic Board (and of course they want to replace the keyboard & lower case lol).

Since getting my MBP back (unfixed) I have been educating myself about these kinds of problems and wonder if it is really necessary to swap it out.

So do I assume it was the spill or should I investigate down this kind of path further? It was manufactured within the date mentioned by the Apple site regarding the bad nVidia GPU's, July 2007 production.

Thanks for any insight you can provide,

Sue.

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Thanks for the info John. Latest post from Matthew - this sounds like a short-term fix, but I guess if it works! I assume it's still working?

Sue.

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I have now completed Matthew's "intentional overheating" fix, it's worked! Was logged in, all my old files (not had my MacBook for about 5 months!!) nearly kissed it! Just running hardware test now to find out what I can. Take that, Genius!

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I had a MacBook Pro 2.16GHz Core 2 Duo that was experiencing similar problems.

1. The screen was physically broken.

2. It powered on but there was no chime, the sleep light would come on but the display remained black. Nothing would get around this, even dismantling it and running it with no screen attached but connected to an external monitor, nor shorting the system reset, solder points on the motherboard.

So, I bought a replacement screen from http://www.laptopscreen.com/ it arrived in about a week, shipped to New Zealand. I dismantled the MacBook Pro and installed the new screen.

After this I was still at problem 2. It booted but the screen wasn't turning on nor was the machine progressing any further into a startup.

Following advice here I wrapped the Macbook Pro up in a blanket and left it for 30 minutes. I unwrapped it and waited a minute and tried to power it on. This worked it chimed and booted. The problem was I still couldn't restart or shutdown the machine as I'd have to repeat the heat up process everytime. So I left it in sleep mode. This became annoying as I wanted to use the laptop as a Lion test machine and rebooting often would be needed.

So, I tried dismantling the laptop and heating up the ATI video chip with a hair dryer for 10minutes as per many other guides and youtube clips. This didn't seem to have any effect. It now wouldn't turn on reliably after being heated up in the blanket and when it did I had graphic corruption on the screen.

At this point I was done with this laptop. So I decided as one last step I'd give the oven solder reflow method a go (as per many other guides for fixing solder reflow problems). As I couldn't be sure what part was actually causing this issue I decided to bake the whole logic board. I removed it from the machine, took all the stickers off, removed the emi foam pads on the ports, took of any kapton tape & plastic covers and put it in the oven at 200c for 9 minutes on balls of tin foil to keep it level. I let it cool with the door open for 5-10 minutes then for another 15-20 on the bench. I was concerned the ambient light sensor might melt as it looked plasticy but it didn't. Some of the solder points looked nice and shiny after removing it form the oven so it was definitely hot enough for some re flowing to occur.

After putting everything back on the logic board and reassembling the laptop, I powered it on. First go it chimed and booted to the Finder, so I tried a restart, that worked. So I tried a Shut Down and power on that worked. I tried a power on from battery 2 hours later, it worked. I just powered it on now, 24 hours later and it's chimed and booted. No graphic corruption either.

So anyone in a similar position I can recommend the oven method. It might not work forever but mine now boots and is usable for now!

Regards,

Matt

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Hi.

Just to let you guys know... Those repair methods WILL NOT LAST LONG. Any attempts of repair with blow torch or heat gun (god bless those logic boards) are UNACCEPTABLE! You will get you Mac fixed for a short time, but then only replacement will help. It's better to get it to TRUSTED workshop for professional REBALLING or if you looking for permament fix whole NVIDIA chip replacement. BUT IF YOU PLAY WITH HEAT GUN OR BLOW TORCH the repair will be impossible at all... It's funny that you can afford £1500 for a Macbook Pro, but then trying to save £100 for professional repair ruining whole machine. Think twice. You will save money anyway. I have repaired tons of motherboards with NVIDIA/ATI/Intel GPUs, but those with signs of previous DIY attempts will almost always fail. PATHETIC

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we do these graphics reflow repairs in shop here in the UK, I must say that there is no guarantee that 1) the reflow will work, 2) the reflow will last longer then 3 months. We do HP laptop Nvidia chip repairs seemingly all day, with high success, but the MacBook Pro work hasn't been as successful even when using different equipment procedures (heat temp, time of application etc...). If you can get a known working used logic board for a good price (they are about 250 here so around 400 Canadian after the conversion) I would 100 percent recommend that route instead ... oh one other thing, the second answer recommended against doing this repair yourself, i def agree with this, its relatively precise work and even heat on the chip is essential to good reflowing and preventing the board from warping.

Assumed from the other answer you're Canadian, if so hello from another Canadian living in the UK

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Yep, I blanketed my MBP last night, and it came back to life. This after a visit to Apple resulted in them offering to give me a break on the price to replace the faulty part, $320, down from $600 I still haven't closed the lid, slept it, or turned it off.

Update

after a few tries blanketing I finally gave in and took It in. Fairly painless, and they cut my quoted price again in half, so now the MBP works again. Worth the $160 repair cost.

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I had a similar problem, and a variation on the quilt-method worked for me.

It appeared that the screen stopped working so I tried connecting it to an external monitor and got nothing. No startup chime, resetting PRam didn't seem to work, etc. HDD spun up, power light came on and if you close the lid it pulsed.

I wrapped the bottom half of the machine in aluminum foil (not the screen), taking care to block the fan exhaust.

I plugged in power and a USB mouse so I could wake it up while closed, and closed the lid.

I clicked the mouse & made sure the machine was on (solid power light).

Then I wrapped the whole mess in a microfiber blanket to keep it very warm, and cooked for 2-3 hours.

When I came back, the machine was pretty hot. I let it cool to room temperature, turned it on, and it worked perfectly fine.

I was completely blown away that this worked, and figured I should share my experience. Now I'll take it into a genius bar to see if they will agree to replace the motherboard as a courtesy. They've done this for me on other systems in the past.

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The only permanent repair is to get an updated chipset fitted like Apple do with their Rev.2 boards. These guys fitted it to mine with 6 Month Warranty http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?V...

Been working for over 10months now, also runs cooler.

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AMAZING! I have a dead 15 inch MacBook Pro from 2008, where Apple already has replaced the logic board (6 months ago), because of NVIDIA problem, but the machine died again. the warranty on repairs is only 3 months (but why?) - even if the repair means a new logic board. Apple refuses to acknowlege that this second crash of the machine can have anything to do with the GPU. As long as there is no chime, and the screen is black, they cannot run their test, and then the conclusion is damaged motherboard!

I have tried every trick in the book (I am a former Apple service technician) and nothing works. yesterday I pulled out the logic board, wrapped it in foil, with a hole revealing only the GPU. I gave it 10 minutes with a heat gun, with a completely shot-in-the-dark method, with no control over temperature or nothing (the heat gun produces probably arohund 200-300 degress celsius depending on the distance from the object). When I did not dare to expose it to more heat, because I could barely touch the chip briefly, I let it cool. After reassembling it, the machine works like nothing ever happened to it. I hope it lasts!

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Just fixed another "totally dead" late 2008 15" MacBook Pro with the heat gun. Apple has been costing a lot of people, a lot of money, by not acknowledging that this is a faulty product!!! Any info on class action lawsuits?

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I have a late 2008 model of MBP and it went dark a few days ago. I can confirm the heat effect works. Took the logic board out, cleaned the thermal paste from the nvidia chip, heated it with hairdryer at close range for 3 minutes twice, re-applied new layer of thermal paste, and assembled the laptop back together. And it now works. Two days and going and all is well so far.

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I would like to add my name to the list of people who had a MBP come back to life after the blanket trick. Prior to doing that, I had ripped the machine apart, meticulously cleaned the carpet of crap that was blocking my air vents, cleaned the heat sink/processors and reapplied thermal paste. It was in the blanket for some time, but it kept shutting off, so I had to keep turning it back on. I think it may have been the system realizing it was too toasty, thereby shutting itself down.

I was personally experiencing the no-video, no-POST version of this horror story, so I'm thrilled to say that the blanket got me back up to speed.

Thanks and good luck!

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Another heat fix here, it's not permanent but it does get the Mac to boot and run. I got my (late 2011 MBP) logic board replacement in fall 2016, and it failed after 9 months. Apple wants $500 for another one. Can anyone recommend a California or US repair shop for these things?

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not sure about laptop boards since they have a lot of other parts, but I successfully baked my friends dead 8800 GTS 640MB card, which now works perfectly: My guide

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Hi all,

I had similar problems (Macbook Pro 2007): the Mac would start but no display. The behavior was random but got to the point that I just could not turn it on. The blanket trick did not work for me - it did not get hot enough or shut down. Apple repair told me to bet a new motherboard. I might as well get a new MacBook. So after it failed again I thought I can't lose much. I need to keep for a few weeks till I am back in Canada where a new one is cheaper than in Europe.So I cooked it in the oven: 90 degrees Celsius for one hour (including heat-up time. I had to use kitchen gloves to get it out. I let it cool off a bit but not enough - too hot to start. I let it cool down completely and voila, it's working again. I don't know how long that will last but I already shut it down once and it came back up which it did not do before.

Word of caution: 90 degrees for one hour may nave been too much.My keyboard melted a bit: the keys look a bit funny and the space bar is not as reliable as before. But it now looks a bit more exotic and I am typing this message on my Macbook-that's progress!

It's just a shame that the Apple product did not last longer than 5 years. Some of my old Dells still work after 10 years - but I also hate them....

So I will get another MacBook Pro and hope I won't get another NVIDIA lemon.

Good luck cooking your own MacBook, Wolfgang

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Freunde, die "Bratapple" Technik ist keine Reparatur. Seit dem letzten Eintrag lief das MacBook 2 Wochen ohne Fehler aber ich habe nicht gewagt ihn auszuschalten den vorherige Erfahrung war dass er dann nicht mehr startet. Gestern hat er dann wieder den Geist aufgegeben (Maus war eingefrohren keine Reaktion auf den keyboard). Neustart brachte ihn nicht zurueck.

Also wieder zurueck ins Bratrohr, diesmal nur 70 Grad aber eine Stunde. Nach abkuehlen ging er wieder.Trotzdem, ich muss einen neuen kaufen denn so geht's nicht weiter.

Gruesse vom Apple Koch.

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I think some caution is needed with this wrap-in-a-quilt and/or heat gun cure method.

It assumes the cause of the misery lays in the degraded or partly lost connection between the logicboard and the about 2 x 2 inch nVidia board, more specific, some of the leadfree solderballs in the Ball Grid Array (BGA) have failed in one way or another.

By itself, blame on (the) leadfree solderjoints is not far fetched, many electronics manufacturers had and still have to deal with those. One could say, leadfree solder is a quite different cup of tea compared to classic lead solder.

So something wrong with the leadfree solderballs is indeed a possible culprit.

However, it is NOT the only one...

There also came to light an issue with the nVidia chip(s?) itself. There are several GeForce 8600 sub-types or versions.

The nasty and prone to failure cards, were equiped with a 602-chip, the better, or should one say more robust, ones had the 603, anyway NOT a 602.

The 602-chips failed internally, as such the 603 can be seen as the redesigned, improved version of the 602.

This implies, in case of misery and the graphics-chip appears to be a 602, any solder reflow attempt like the wrap-in-a-quilt method and/or reflow and/or reball and/or heat gun or baking will not work.

And let us face it, reballing is a skilled specialists job. One could do it oneself, as long as the proper equipment is at hand.

Apple abandoned the GeForce 8600M-series with 602-chips as soon as it became clear what went wrong and moved tot 603 and later. The Apple logicboards exchanged via the extended warranty program are/were all 603-chip equiped.

With greetings from continental Europe

Feike Hoogenbos

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Hi Feike,

For sure the magic blanket is not a one size fits all solution. But it has seemed to work for many people in this thread, as a 'last resort' solution (thread title.)

I would hope that the replacement logic boards Apple has been using are better. But I have read too many times of people who have had bring their MBP's back in for GPU failure after a replacement.

It's a real shame, the 2007/2008 MBP's are nice machines, except for the ticking time bomb part.

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Hi, is there any program which I can use to detect which chip is used in my Mac? I'd love to know whether I do have the 602 or 603 version. Thanks!

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You'll need to remove the heat sink to tell for sure. The logic board should be marked rev2.x

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Just a quick update, while (1) taking the machine apart and using the blow-dryer on NVidia chip brought the machine to life initially, it didn't last. In about 2 months time, the blank screen play started again. Repeated (1), and the problem went away the second time.

Though this time I figured I should try to change the logic board and around $300 price from acendtech seemed more reasonable that the $799. Replacement went well and everything appeared to be in order. In about 2 weeks time, the funny flashing RGB pixels started to appear randomly on the screen, and the problem got worse to the point where the screen freeze becomes a fairly regular occurrence. The only recourse at this point is to perform the hard reboot.

Finally, I called it quits on all the tweaking or twiddling. Paid 10% or so return penalty to acendtech and bought myself a mid-2010 Mac for under a gran. It has been 6 months now and I can finally focus on using the Mac then worrying about the fixes.

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Can confirm the baking option works. reapply thermal paste and it runs much cooler now.

I have a problem however: now the fans are constantly running at 6000RPM after doing the SMC and ram reset.

its running at around 36 degrees C which is quite cool

any ideas??

cheers

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I had the same issue with Macbook Pro Late 2008 15" model, after baking problem went away. Now fans are running at about 2000 RPM and has normal 36-46 degrees C. Before I completely bake the logic board at 385f for about 7 minutes it would not power on without heating the board for a short time then it would run normally without any problems at very low temp. but fans at max. 6000 rpm. So I am guessing something to do with proper temp.

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I had a go with a 1200w heat gun (hot air blower) normally used for stripping paint on my nvidia chip. First covering the whole logic board with tin foil -folded many times, then cutting a small square hole in the foil where the nvidia chip is.

i tested the heat gun in the air on lowest setting, and gauged how hot it was with my hand from a distance. At about 50 cm distance it was unbearable after a second or two.

From around 20-30 cm distance i gently heated the whole board from above, moving the air gun over all of the foil. I did this for around 2 mins.

then I focused a bit tighter on the nvidia chip, at around 20 cm, for 3 mins, at which point i could smell the solder a little and then another minute a little closer. So a total of 4 mins at fairly close range to the nvidia chip. I think the key here was that I could smell the solder / electronics when it was 'cooked'. I was VERY scared to over cook it and end up with one big blob of solder underneath. I left the logic board to cool after heating - after reading you mustnt move it. Reassembled it into my A1226 Macbook pro and its working fine. Ive adusted my energy preferences in be powersaving. I hope the fix lasts..time will tell.

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hi, i would like to share my experience. my a1220 had the issue with the freezing then black screen and normal OS operating in the background.

My first attemps where with a heat gun. problem appeared again. Betwenn the intervals of working/not working video chip i tried to remove the adi drives and eliminate the screen saver, but no result.

SO tired of disasembling and reasembling i gave a try to matthew´s trick and i would like to confirm it works. I put it under the bed/mattres for 1.45 coonected. When i retrieve it, you should let it cool and charge again since the heat takes away the batt, a start with no problems.

my recomendations to stop the issue from reappering are:

1. use smc fan at max (6000 rpm)

2. avoid reaching 70 celsius. Over 60 its bad already i would say. the more heat cycles it reaches, the more chances it will fail again.

3. have a clean install of the OSX, updated.

4. Use a dark desktop image/simplest preferably black screen saver.

5. runnin as few possible applications at once, dont overload.

6. use a cooling bar, pad (new) or similar underneath so it has an air flow or some material that takes away heat.

7. after using your mac leave it upside down, so when the solder of the chip cool it will stay in its place.

My conclusion is that as the chip is solded underneath, with the forces of gravity and vibrations working against plus the heat makes as said, a perfect storm for the chip to disconnect from the logic board.

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Another success story here.

I had A1226 recently went blank screen with lid led light turned on. I tried blanket method several times but didn't work. So finally, I disassembled logic board and wrapped with foil, exposed GPU and used hair dryer for about 3mins. After natural cooling, the screen showed up and it works nicely. Thanks for sharing this post.

Definitely I visited Apple Store here and the technician told me it would cost several hundreds to replace the logic board and recommended buy new one. But now I am happy with my Macbook Pro back to life : )

Now I am also using smccontrol app to run the fan faster and keep the heatsink cooler.

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Hicham

This is my 3th time with the heat gun method .

the Machine still working .but i have no idea how long it will last this time .

my advise is to activate screen sharing or remote management in system preference .so you can still control your mac from another one if the screen freeze again.

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The quilt saved my Macbook's life, and also mine... Just wrapped it powered on into a quilt, upside down for an hour. When I took the quilt out, the MB was extremely hot, I couldn't touch it's back. I let it cool down for almost another hour, and voilà!!! It is working again!!!

Thanks Matthew! Thanks a lot!!!

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This is not a fix in any way.

When you poke a recently killed bug, it moves for a second. It is still dead.

When you heat up a recently killed GPU, it will work again for a short period. It is still dead.

This is jerry rigging. Jerry rigging is cool, but this is not iJerryrigit, this is ifixit.

Fix by replacing GPu with a NEW one, not heating it until it comes back until it contorts back to whatever F'd up mess was there when it died.

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Hello, another story of quilt which worked for a few weeks on 2 mbp 2007, but what lasts the longer is the oven, it's the method of this guy :

http://russell.heistuman.com/2010/04/27/...

It works for 2 to 5 months for me, and I've done it 5 times now !!

Next time I'll try maybe the new chip, but it's a bit costly from France and second hand mbp are cheaper and cheaper… I repair a few mbp from friends and my conclusion is that they are too expensive for what they last when you buy them brand new, I suppose that 3-4 years is a good mtbf for Apple.

The aluminium imacs last twice that time and more, but the white imacs 17" had a lot of problems with screens and components, so Apple is not exactly BMW, but osx is more fun than windows and ubuntu, so … and I imagine that electronic products should be considered as expensive consumer products.

But ifixit existence is a very good thing, I do use it for iphones and macs and the repair guides are very precious to me, so thanks to all the contributors.

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Dan,

I have a couple of questions;

When I start noticing problems w my logic board before I would have to re "bake it" .. I was thinking the thing for me to do to help prevent taking it all apart again is the blanket trick.. how can I have it run hot in the blanket? I tried once and it ran cool.

Also You mentioned to delete the AMD GPU drivers. How do you do that?

I have an early MBP 2011. 17"

Thank you again!

Julie

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hej folks,

i got kind of the same problem. my macbook a1226 doesn't start correctly. when i hit the power button a short sound comes up, i goes its the super drive, but the screen stays black and when i connect it to a external monitor nothing happens.

so i tried the blanket trick to get it back to life and it worked! but if i close the machine or just wait for a few hours it doesn't wake up again and the problem remains. so i did it again, same result. so would you recommend to bake the board in an oven and replace the thermal paste? maybe thats the reason the machine doesn't hold on working? just tried to avoid open the machine all up because there are so many screws.

would be very happy to get some advice from you professionals ;)

thanks a lot!

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(1) THE MAGIC BLANKET TRICK IS ONLY A VERY SHORT TERM FIX (few days), as no solder reflows, but the solder only temporarily expands and thus touches. At best a few days if you are lucky: Good temperature conditions, no shakings as i.e. heavy lid close or just moving on a table or in a backpack. Performed it myself, held 9 days. MBP A1226 Logic Board last resort fix for nVidia video chip

(2) REFLOW A MID TERM FIX (realistically a few months, if you are lucky more, if not less):

(a) Oven

(b) Heatgun

(Extra) Drop some reflux under the chip beforehand.

Heatgun+reflux is preferred, as much more targeted, less danger for remaining PCB and components. Can be done by DYI-guys. Did it too. Held for 2 months. Then at second attempt no more luck, totally burnt/cracked the PCB.

(3) REBALLING THE ONLY REALISTIC LONG TERM FIX. Only possible with professional equipment and staff.

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Hello, I tried the blanket trick which worked for some times, from 1 to a few weeks. Then I tried the oven, which lasted a few months from 2 to 6, and of course if you don't shut it or let it go to sleep, or restart it, it lasts longer. I'd be curious to know how long lasts the reballing fix by professional and how much it costs.

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Sadly, there are two surfaces that need repair. One is externally the chip to the logic board and the second is within the chip its self. What you are doing with the blanket trick is just causing the solder to alter its state back to a conductor Vs a semi-conductor. This is a known issue with Tin based solders. The correct method here is to replace the defective chip and in doing do clean off the old Tin solder and put down a better solder we have today. Only problem you can't get the needed chip as they are no longer being made and the stock that is out there are mostly the defective chip people try to sell to people. Time for a new system ;-{

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Hi All, I am putting this out there, since it worked for me.

Apple refuses to warranty this machine, since I changed the battery/hard drive on the machine as a user replaceable part. I hate you apple…

So If you have a video card issue, no need to put it in foil/oven/hot air gun or blankets to heat it up. I have a simpler solution!

Open up back cover and disconnect the 2 fans. Put the lid back, then turn it on and let it get to the bad video screen. Leave it on for a good 7-10 min and let it get hot. This will automatically solder reflow the chip without pulling it all apart and doing oven techniques.

I did a hair dryer reflow once and it worked, so I wondered why not let it heat up on its own without fans, the heat stays in and it has the same affect. This procedure makes it work for about 1 month. Then you need to do this again. I know it sucks, but disconnecting fans is easy and can be done repeatedly. I dont even screw in my back cover any more!

If it works for you enjoy and Screw you Apple for not supporting your hardware.

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And you hate Ford Motors as Ford won't fix your 1955 Pink DeSoto. Come on guy this is a very old system! Don't fault Apple (or NVIDIA who is the real B here) here, the world moves forward ...

Your system is on its last breath! Backup your stuff and start saving your pennies for a new system as this one will finally not come back to life. Besides, you can't run any of the newer OS's & apps. Don't get me wrong here, I shed a few tears with my beloved A1226 died.

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My 2008 MBP had similar symptoms to many of yours: no display, powers on, fan goes on, DVD spins-up. I tried to "blanket cook" it but it didn't work, and I was too cautious to try it again. I also didn't bother contacting Apple... why waste your time? For those who are less adverse or have less time like me in 2016, one alternative to DIY techniques is that there are companies out there that do this repair, either to the logic board or replacing the nVidia chip. They have machines that do this type of work apparently. I ended up sending it to NYC along with $160, and boom, it was back in a week, completely working. If you're interested, I used the L2 repair service.

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Basically the "blanket trick" is overheating the GPU and it ends with an automatic system shutdown. After the restart the system does not use the faulty GPU , instead it opens with the Integrated (intel) graphic card. So after having it open , it is better to delete the AMD GPU drivers (if yours is an 2011 it is AMD) , only after doing that you can shut down your MBP and reopen without any issues. Heat Gun or other similar fixes are only symptomatic fixes and this GPU with this logic board is A FAULTY MANUFACTURING!!! APPLE HAS TO ACKNOWLEDGE THAT and should change these MBP's. Good luck!

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Nope, this model does not have an integrated GPU within the CPU

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Onur, as far as I know AND experienced, you are wrong! In detail: 1) The MBP in the state of having no graphics at all, has no working low level system at all, as the GPU is an essential part of the mainboard circuitry, and thus the MBP in this state can be considered as "a collection of dumb components acting solely on their own", so actually NO automatic system shutdown happens. Fact! It runs forever, only the user stops it by suspending power. 2) The effect of the magic blanket trick: The temperature increase is high enough to expand the soldering points so that they touch but not melt together! This condition holds for a few days, at most a few weeks. But the achieved temperatures are too low to really reflow the soldering balls. 3) Only a baking or heatgun procedure provides the chance for a mid term solution. 4) Only reballing is a chance for a long time solution, as the used solder is indeed an engineering fault of the back then newly used soldering materials due to new environmental laws (~2006-2008).

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Well stated Porg, I'm always amazed how urban legends like this are more truthful that scientific fact ;-}

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Can anyone recommend a 3rd party repair that can replace the bad board? Apple wants $500 to replace mine, which Apple installed free in late 2016 under the extended repair deal. I think they just swapped boards for another of the same generation, got a Radeon HD 6770M that's now failing. Well, I can make it run by using the hot blanket trick, so long as I don't turn it off again.

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Answering my own question: DT&T Services, Fremont CA replaced my bad board. Cost half what Apple wanted, with twice the warranty Apple offered on the repair.

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lkvee will be eternally grateful.
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