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ibook G4 logic board fix

40225 Views 73 Replies Latest reply: Apr 3, 2007 6:29 PM by c_w_arnold RSS
  • Sixten Kraemer Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Oct 3, 2006 2:54 AM (in response to c_w_arnold)
    Hi.
    My iBook has now worked for two days perfectly. No corrupted display, no start problems with running fan, no freezing, no problems at all. I am convinced that my ibook is fixed now.
    The problem was not a faulty component. And it was not caused by rough use by me. The only reason was low quality control of the soldering process in the factory!
    And I had to buy a new iBook because of that! Thanks Apple.

    Even if this chip is now resoldered, there's no guarantee that everything else will be all right on this logic board forever. I'd like to see a reaction from Apple. A logic board exchange program for these thousands of bad iBooks.
    iBook G4 800 MHz, Mac OS X (10.4.8)
  • keith_deininger Calculating status...
    Currently Being Moderated
    Oct 9, 2006 3:18 PM (in response to c_w_arnold)
    I too have had this same very problem with my iBook G4. The problem is most definitely with the solder points of the component in question.

    A solder joint does not have to be broken to cause problems, this issue is known in the electronics industry as a COLD SOLDER JOINT. This is when the solder was not properly heated/melted during the construction phase of the PCB and the connections become weak over time.

    I am considering offering repair services to correct the faulty Logic Boards as I have all of the necessary equipment to do so. I have worked with micro-component PCB's for many years working with cellular phones, medical devices and PC's performing board level repairs. If time allows me I will begin to offer this service for a very reasonable price.

    Please be aware that if I do choose to offer this service, the only way that I will perform such repairs is with the full understanding that this repair has not been approved by Apple Computers and that there is no warranty implied. Details to follow!

    Thanks, KD
    I-Book G4, Mac OS X (10.4.7)
  • keith_deininger Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Oct 9, 2006 8:54 PM (in response to keith_deininger)
    Well folks, if you are reading this page then you have come seeking help of how to fix your failing or failed iBook G4 laptop.

    I have just completed the repairs to my G4 and everything is running fine right now. Upon an even closer inspection with a 10x jewelers loop that I have...

    (for finding inclusions in gemstones, my now wife thought that I was crazy when we went ring shopping for our wedding and the diamond the jeweler was trying to sell me as a VS1 had 3 hidden inclusions! They never saw me coming!)

    Anyway... back to the findings... located on what appears to be a video processor chip (need to research the number on it) there were 5 very weak solder connections, closest to pin #1 (the position on the chip where the indentation is, for those that do not know where pin 1 is located). After carefully resoldering the pin connections and checking the continuity between the leads and the board test points all appears well. I did as a precautionary measure added a small piece of mounting foam tape directly between the chip surface and the protective shielding that will keep the portion of the PCB from flexing or moving when the unit is in transit.

    I will be running system diagnostics on the unit for the next 12 hours straight to determine if there are any other issues with the system. I will be sure to post a followup message in a few days with the results of the repair.

    WARNING! I DO NOT reccommend this repair for everyone as you can destroy the chip and PCB if you are not familiar with micro IC repairs.

    I have worked in the electronics and computer industry for more than 15 years as a Systems and Design Engineer and have worked on very delicate medical instrumentation for DuPont and GE Medical involving micro IC component design and repair at the board level. Using the wrong soldering iron & tip, solder and flux can completely render the board useless.

    Any questions or comments may be sent to my email address:

    keith_deininger2@comcast.net

    I will reply within 24 hours of any email sent to me at this address.

    Thanks and Good Luck,

    Keith Deininger

    I-Book G4 Mac OS X (10.4.7)

    I-Book G4   Mac OS X (10.4.7)  
  • keith_deininger Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Oct 11, 2006 2:38 PM (in response to c_w_arnold)
    Update! Update! Update!

    Well everyone, my findings seemed to be spot on! It is now the 11th of October and my repaired Logic PCB seems to be doing just fine!

    Last night I really put the system through the 'wringer' and ran a system bench test for more than 10 hours straight with out any failures, lockups, shutdowns or blanking screens!

    So far so good.

    Apple really needs to take ownership of this problem and replace the Logic PCB's on every iBook that is out there, regardless of whether or not it has had a problem. There was clearly a manufacturing error on the robotic soldering station that attached the chip in question. I know this will cost them a bundle, but if consumers demand quality of manufacturers then they will get it.

    Take for instance Siemens Electronics of Germany, their QA tollerances are some of the toughest in the world. When you purchase a product with the Siemens name on it you know that it is going to last and is going to be dependable no matter what. I have owned many Siemens products including mobile phone, home phone system and appliances and never had a problem with them and they have been dropped, kicked, stepped on, rained on, etc and still work great (cell phone - S46 and home phone - Gigaset series). If more companies followed their tollerances, electronic devices would rarely have these problems.

    Apple has had a lot of manufacturing issues over the past few years, iBook G3, I-Pods, iBook G4 Battery (not once but twice in a year). Apple quality standards used to be much higher, but to compete with lowcost PC (Windows) systems they have lowered the standards and it is hurting them severely in the wallet in the long run. I will gladly pay for quality products even if they cost significantly more than the competition.

    Well enough about my venting. APPLE ADMIT THERE IS A PROBLEM AND TAKE OWNERSHIP. ENOUGH SAID!

    I will continue to post system performance updates for the next few weeks about the operation of my RESURECTED iBook G4. I think that I will rename her Pheonix!

    Ciao, Cheers, Later, C-Ya, Auf Wiedersehen, Das Vadanas, Au revoir, さようなら, Adiós!
    I-Book G4, Mac OS X (10.4.7)
  • Sixten Kraemer Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Oct 16, 2006 1:24 AM (in response to Sixten Kraemer)
    Hi.
    Two weeks without problems now! I'm sure that this was my problem.
    iBook G4 800 MHz, Mac OS X (10.4.8)
  • Edgar Silva Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Oct 23, 2006 1:33 PM (in response to c_w_arnold)
    It's great to see the problem has been pinpointed and there's some sort of a solution. With midterms and such coming up, I haven't been able to open my 'Book up again, and I probably won't be able to for a while, however I'm confident I'll be able to get my laptop to be mobile again. As soon as that happens, I'll update everyone. ^_^
  • lukelukeluke Calculating status...
    Currently Being Moderated
    Nov 10, 2006 10:36 PM (in response to c_w_arnold)
    Many, many thanks for posting that link to your logic board solution. I took my iBook to an Apple service center and they confirmed my diagnosis of a faulty logic board (for a $45 fee). They told me it would be $700 to replace the board, plus labor. Yikes. Guess I should have gotten the extended warranty.

    So anyway, I took the thing apart and inserted a shim as you described (and illustrated! thanks!), put it all back together, and fired it up. I couldn't believe it worked. And it did...for about ten minutes. Then I kept getting these weird and random crashes, usually about ten minutes after startup, but sometimes within seconds of starting up. Huge improvement over the loud fan noise, but I still didn't have an operational machine.

    Long story short, I ended up removing the extra RAM chip and now I've been going strong for about an hour. My question for the supergurus out there is: is it possible that my logic board problem killed my RAM, or is it more likely that the logic board and RAM problems were simultaneous and unrelated meltdowns? I haven't had a chance to test the RAM chip in another computer yet to be sure it is faulty and not my iBook. If I ever have that opportunity, I'll post again with the results.

    I'm just curious if anyone has a nice quick explanation of what is going on physically, and if I will be wasting my money if I buy another RAM chip and stick in this machine.

    Thanks. Again, excellent post, cwarnold.

       
  • jajoachi Calculating status...
    Currently Being Moderated
    Nov 11, 2006 6:24 AM (in response to lukelukeluke)
    Hi.

    Your point about the RAM is an interesting one. As for my iBook G4, I extended my RAM by 1 GB to 1,25 GB. That was in March of this year. My first logicboard failure was in following June. Since the RAM upgrade I have the impression that my computer heats up more.

    Just to throw in another possible factor into discussion: during the last logic board replacement (the 4th!) of my iBook G4 (four weeks ago), they also exchanged the display, as it allegedly caused some short circuits. It has to be seen whether that extends the "life" of my machine. So far my iBook "died" on me every 4-6 weeks.

    Cheers,
    Jan
    iBook G4 (still), Mac OS X (10.3.9)
  • mInDbLoWa91 Calculating status...
    Currently Being Moderated
    Nov 12, 2006 12:11 AM (in response to c_w_arnold)
    i've had apple repair my logic board w/o much difficulty like 3 times. I don't know how i did it those last times but i've been trying to break my laptop for like the past couple of months and it just doesn't work. it's holding up this time and once it breaks a fourth time i get the macbook. any suggestions? grin no kiddin here!
    iBook G4 14, iPod Video, Nano, and Shuffle, Mac OS X (10.3.9)
  • philipgar Calculating status...
    Currently Being Moderated
    Nov 21, 2006 1:54 PM (in response to mInDbLoWa91)
    Just wait till the warranty runs out!
    MacBook 2.0GHz 2GB Ram, 60GB hdd, Mac OS X (10.4.8), iBook G4 1.33, Dead Logic Board
  • Bram Rypma Calculating status...
    Currently Being Moderated
    Nov 21, 2006 5:04 PM (in response to c_w_arnold)
    dude,

    that *****, same thing happened to my ibook when I was living in Japan. It was fixed but all of my pictures were gonzo. It seems to be a real problem with these things.
  • Jamin_nzed Calculating status...
    Currently Being Moderated
    Nov 26, 2006 7:59 AM (in response to Bram Rypma)
    i brought mine in japan too, same thing happened just outside warranty though. Im gonna go get it checked and confirmed as a logic board failure by an authorised apple servicer, then i tell you what, every complaints division at apple is going to hear about it!!! It seems unfair on the consumer that a company can make a faulty/defective product that only just clears warranty. If i have no luck down that route i guess the shim will be employed. Thanks for all the good advice out there! J
    ibook G4, Mac OS X (10.4.4)
  • keith_deininger Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Nov 29, 2006 7:54 PM (in response to c_w_arnold)
    Update on my iBook repairs: Nearly 3 months since the repair to the chip and all is well.

    Apple, we are waiting to hear about you are going to do about the problems.

    KD
    I-Book G4, 60GB, Airport2, 1.25GB RAM, Mac OS X (10.4.7), Also running Virtual PC with Win 2000 SP4
  • ramvem Calculating status...
    Currently Being Moderated
    Dec 5, 2006 6:56 PM (in response to keith_deininger)
    Hi Keith, Kraemer, cwarnold, I have a ibook g4 1.2 GHz (512mb, 30gb, 10.4.6) with the same problem. The odd thing is it started happening on the first day of connecting it to an external monitor & usb kvm switch. I assumed the logic board got burnt by the usb. Thanks to all the wonderful info you guys have posted I will open it up and examine the chip solder joints.
    Best Wishes
    Ram
    iBook G4 1.2 GHz, Mac OS X (10.4.6)

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