Martin Probst's weblog

MacBook Pro defects summary

Thursday, November 29, 2007, 09:12 — 0 comments Edit

Since I bought my MacBook Pro (1st generation) in April 2006 I’m a very happy Mac OS user. The operating system and most applications on it are really nice.

On the other hand, the hardware dongle (i.e. the MacBook) I bought on that day has been horrible. The hardware itself is nice, it looks good, it’s reasonably fast, etc., but I’ve never experienced so many quality problems in any electronics equipment.

When it arrived, the keyboard (which is btw. much worse than the keyboard on my old Thinkpad X30) was broken, some keys didn’t work. You would think that Apple knows how to build keyboards by now…

Then in June 2006, on a business trip to Chicago, the whole system broke down, motherboard had to be exchanged. Luckily, that was on the last day.

Next thing was that the right fan died, somewhen in September.

Then I noticed that the notebook started to give me electric surges when it was connected to AC power. Apple refused to repair this, as the voltage was apparently below 50 V. I really find this development in the American torture debate alarming. The problem has stopped by now, though.

Early this year, the other fan - left side - died. I was just out of the 1 year guarantee and Apple first refused to repair that. After insisting they did, as it’s obviously a manufacturing failure if both fans break in such a short time frame.

And now yesterday I open Disk Utility and see that my internal harddrive reports a S.M.A.R.T. failure. Great.

For me this has been mostly annoying, as all repairs so far have been covered by guarantee. For Apple, selling me this sort of hardware must have been quite a financial loss. Assuming they make 1000 € out of a 3000 € MacBook Pro, the four repairs, including one that required expensive hardware, have probably eaten that up.

I’d be interested if the quality record of later models is similar. Several of my friends had quite a lot of hardware trouble with their models, too. I can’t imagine how Apple makes money from this, if their hardware fails so hard within guarantee time.

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