It seems to me Apple is handling the GeForce 8600 GT problem okay. They gave everyone a 4-year extended warranty on it and issued refunds to those who paid for repairs prior to that. Most are outside that 4-year window by now. Is this what went bad on your Macbook Pro?
Try one of the Authorized Service Providers.
I had the exact same issue (about two years ago). Apple store genius did not accept it and offered repair for ~$1100.
I went to one of the Apple Authorized Service Providers. They kept the machine overnight, ran the standard test for this issue and did a free of charge mainboard replacement.
However, if the extended warranty period has ended last month, then they are not obliged to fix it for free.
@Badunit yes it was the NVIDIA GeForce 8600 GT problem...
@ Allan Eckert, I was told that the NVIDIA repair program ended last month at the Apple Store today in Highland Village.
My GPU went out this past week, seems like I'm two weeks on the wrong side of their repair program.
Bad timing more than anything else I was in the middle of saving up for the new Retina MBP.
This is the third mac I've had die on me, an iBook from way back when and a G5 iMac that died a month past the AppleCare warranty.
I would consider myself a diehard customer and didn't really question the lifespan of the previous macs as a whole or paying for repair costs in the past. But the NVIDIA issue seems rampant across the board, every MBP circa 2007-2008 we have at work have died via the same issue this past summer.
In my humble view, I felt like my MBP was treated like an obsolete relic by the staff and that the focus on the conversation was upselling me on a new machine. This is a far cry from the days of yore (2005 and prior) when the staff was more knowledgeable of mac products and symphathetic to long time customers. I'm a graphic designer and so have been an Apple customer since 1998.
Apple products sell themselves now, I get that. But things change over time, and they're going to want to bank on the goodwill of their long time brand advocates, and I'm not sure if fickle iPhone 4S or iPad 3 users will be enough...
Just my 2 cents.
Update to my latest issue with Apple.
Decided after much deliberation to go with the depot repair rate of $310 to replace the logic board. This laptop is my workhorse and I'm not in a financial position at the moment to upgrade to a newer machine (working parent).
They sent it out to the repair depot, and about a week later got a call back saying they needed to requote the repair.
They alledge that the laptop has been tampered with and has an unauthorized third party display.
They requoted $1200 for the repairs, Tier 4 depot flat rate for repairs.
I declined. I tried to get Apple to take a second look and escalate the service ticket, I've never tampered with my machine (performed a typical RAM upgrade via Crucial) and had the batteries replaced twice.
Depot declined to repair my machine at all. It's been returned and flagged by Apple's system as a tampered device. As such, I am unable to even get instore repairs of my device.
To say that I'm dissapointed by Apple's customer service, aftermarket support and repair analysis, would be putting it very mildly. I am essentially stuck with a dead Macbook Pro that was working fine a little over a month ago.
Back when I was a twenty-something kid with very few adult obligations, I might have shrugged it off and upgraded to the latest and greatest MBP. Maybe my perspective has changed quite a bit but a lot of Apple's recent shifts in customer service really bothers me and has gotten under my skin.
Below is a blog post documenting my repeated attempts at getting Apple to repair my laptop.
I will update it as new developments occur.
Sorry to hear that. Seems like a mess. Couple of points:
For $300-$350, you can buy a used 2007 MBP. The part however is definitely more expensive than that, so the first quote was most likely a mistake, then they came up with that weird excuse.
Take it somewhere else, even non-Apple for repairs. You can try replacing the Logic Board yourself:
It might be cheaper than Apple's offer, but still more expensive than many new laptops.
Why did you wait for so long?
Because you wouldn't know about it until it stops working and Apple wouldn't replace unless they can see the problem.
Even if you knew about it, as I mentioned in the comment above, it was not a straightfoward process. Apple Store wanted to charge me ~$1100, they declined that it was covered under extended warranty program. The only reason I took it to an AASP was that I googled the issue and found a blog that documented people's experiences with the program. So many were told by "geniuses" that they do not qualify, then went to another store, they ran the test and they qualified! The AASP ran the hardware test, it confirmed the my machine is a defective unit and replaced Logic Board for free.
At least with the Nano recall you could check the serial number online and send it in before if failed. Not in this case though.
The macbook was working fine up until August. I was aware of the NVIDIA card issue but my machine did not exhibit any signs at the time of the announcement. Looking back I would have attempted to get it replaced during that time period, regardless if symptoms manifested itself.
When the video did die, I was under the assumption that the NVIDIA repair program was still in effect. There was zero mention online that it had expired and only after prodding the store manager for a straight answer was I told that it had just expired a month prior and that their hands were tied.
A desirable outcome for me would be for Apple to replace the logic board under the NVIDIA repair program that "unofficially" ended this past July. However I am willing to pay a fair price to have my laptop repaired.
$1200 does not strike me a fair price.
The eBay route might be a viable option for me, I'm just more inclined to have what I currently own, and worked very hard to pay for, fixed if possible rather than chuck it in the trash.
Other than the fried video card, it's in pristine condition.
Several friends have recommended some 3rd party repair shops around town. They all seem to be staffed by former Apple geniuses, curious to know what they say.
I appreciate all of the support and tips here.
You have been Lied to. The Repair program is for 4 years from date of purchase. Yes that 4 years is coming to an End as most of the system affected were bought more then 4 years ago. But on the odd chance you bought from Apple a Late 2007 or Early 2008 Macbook Pro in late September of 2008 you would still be covered.
The store you took it to Flat Out Lied to you. There is Not Set End Date to that program. And now to top it off Apple is saying the screen was changed and refuses any server, even if paid for out of your own pocket.
Time for you to call Apple Customer Relations.
@Shootist007, this has been my primary issue with Depot. There's no viable means of interfacing with them on the customer side and according to the store manager at the First Colony Apple Store, their word was the final say on any repair questions. No appeal, no second opinions, no explanations, nada.
I've never really came accross this level of implaccable customer service before.
The only thing I could think of, in regards to why my laptop got flagged, is that I got the very first batch of LED monitors with that gen of Macbooks and opted for the LED backlit option because the genius said it would have better battery performance and was more environmentally friendly due to mercury reduction.
While customer dissatisfaction is probably 90% of my motivation to get Apple to repair my laptop, the other 10% is just curiousity as to why they seem to think my laptop has been tampered with. It's a befuddling mystery for sure, and I would like to know the story behind it.
I attempted to contact First Colony Apple Store again and requested to speak to the "Genius Admin" or "Lead Genius" as per some very specific instructions that were emailed to me privately. They took my name and told me that someone would contact me.
Never heard back.
I figured with all the hoopla surrounding iPhone 5 this might be normal and everyone might be bit busy.
Tried calling again later in the day and same thing. Been noticing a crazy amount of traffic to my blog from various "Apple" IP addresses and some tweets and retweets about my post from Apple Retail employees. The commentary on twitter gave me a brief pause.
Several people from this forum advised me to email Tim Cook directly, said it worked for them in resolving persistent customer service complaints that hit a brick wall. Sent an email recapping what was essentially stated here and on my blog post. I did it after much thought and mindful examinations of my own motives and expectations. What I would like to see happen and what I was willing to live with.
Yesterday someone from their Corporate Executive Relations team called me on the phone to follow up personally. They recorded my serial number over the phone and asked me to verify it in person (I took the machine out, flipped it over and removed the battery to read the #SN). She asked to verify which Apple Store location I was dealing with and some other additional info.
I was told in no uncertain terms that the NVIDIA logic board repair program had definitively expired and that option was no longer on the table. There were no exceptions that could be made.
From there we talked about the flat Depot repair rate of ~$310 for tier one repairs. She said she would need to get in touch with Apple's repair depot, find out what they know or don't know and figure out next steps. She gave me her contact information over the phone and followed up via email later that night but said it would take the better part of the week to follow up on it thoroughly.
I'll provide updates on what happens later this week. I guess for better or for worse it will be pretty final.
For what it is worth the courtesy and professionalism of Apple's Corporate Executive Relations department is day-and-night different from the AppleCare reps I got and described earlier.
Much thanks to everyone for their suggestions and advice and especially to those that contacted me privately with more detailed information. It provided a useful roadmap for sure.