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Thunderbolt Display turns off randomly

62681 Views 394 Replies Latest reply: Apr 3, 2014 6:24 AM by Tim Hassett RSS Branched to a new discussion.
  • jfklick Calculating status...
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    Jul 8, 2013 6:40 AM (in response to jfklick)

    Correction: it did not require a reboot this time. I disconnected the ethernet, disconnected the thunderbolt cable from the laptop, waited a few minutes, reconnected. Fixed!

  • duncanfromsalisbury Calculating status...
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    Jul 8, 2013 6:47 AM (in response to jfklick)

    Thanks jfklick


    I thought that was the answer then but mine still switches off randomly. Seems to do it less with the ethernet in the laptop though. A skype call using the thunderbolt display camera really exacerbates the problem.

  • jfklick Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Jul 10, 2013 8:20 AM (in response to duncanfromsalisbury)



    I continue to find that everything works perfectly as long as I don't have ethernet plugged into the Thunderbolt display. It seems like this may only be a solution for some people though. Also, I'm using a 2012 MacBook Air with the display, so others may have differing results depending on the computer they're using.

  • OWC Larry Calculating status...
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    Jul 10, 2013 8:37 AM (in response to jfklick)

    Some of this would even suggest the possibility that certain Thunderbolt displays have some level of issue contributing. And a combination of interactions combining to the issue manifestation as well. I am using a Thunderbolt display with a 2012 and have not experienced issue with Ethernet port in use.


    it is always frustrating when no staight up, consistent circumstance that is the cause. A lot of circumstantial stuff here and some combination of factors - again, including possibility of specific Thunderbolt displays - brings this on. All said - various updates over time seem to have alleviated for most, and improved otherwise.

  • Tony Raza Level 2 Level 2 (200 points)
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    Jul 10, 2013 11:26 PM (in response to gadget_aussie_man)

    My heart sinks to see such a long thread about this problem.


    I've had my mac mini and thuderbolt 17' display since april 2012.  I'm a light easy user.  No Ram or anything added and only use it once every several days. 


    Just recently the display has started to turn off randomly.  At least once per session.  Appliations like skype frequently set it off.


    Feeling quite worried as the Thuderbolt dipslay was an expensive purchase for me and now realize i might have made a big mistake.


    I take it from these threads that there doesn not seem to be much to do, other than take it in for servicing.  I'll report back if I come accross any solutions.

  • Kung-Foo-Kamel Calculating status...
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    Aug 1, 2013 3:05 PM (in response to Tony Raza)

    Similer discoverys here


    I found my issues with 2 thunderbolt dispalys going black and dooing all sorts of random stuff was related to the Ram.


    I was running 2 x 8GB Strontium SODIMMS (SRT8G86S2-P9M) I think its CL9 1600Mhz DDR3, I removed 1 Dimm and the problem disapears, I then took that out and replaced the ELPIDA 2 x 2GB genuine ram modules back in and everything works flawlessly, Im currently looking to purchase another brand, I will post the brand and model if it works for me so others can hopefully fix there issues as well.

  • OWC Larry Level 1 Level 1 (45 points)
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    Aug 1, 2013 3:19 PM (in response to Kung-Foo-Kamel)

    It's easy to make assumption - but this isn't that easy.


    I'd agree the memory is likely the issue in your case though... you're issues are a bit extreme and not the typical reported + that memory is over clocked as well. 1600MHz SO with full compliance has a CL11 rating, not CL9. With respect to what this thread is about, seen no reports of snow and random craziness in terms of the Apple bug. On a Retina I use - I still get an occassional wig out... until I restarted it kept flipping the position of my two displays each time I reconnected... and then locked with blue and black screens entirely after 2 or 3 plug ins over a the sme number of days... which why I restarted.. Using current release 10.8.4 with all updates...


    Back to memory in general - there is a lot going on and we maintain an open invite for anyone who has OUR memoy and has a problem to ping me for a personal review and test. We really want to see a symptomatic machine that isn't an Apple factory soldered ram system. We have a fleet of several dozen Mac minis and have done extensive testing - which I've noted in this very thread recently again... with the current EFI and OS updates, Apple appears to have squashed - for the most part - a bug that impacts ALL Thunderbolt equipped Macs when it comes to supporting two displays.


    I maintain, at least in the case of our OWC Memory - which is fully Tested and Certified for the Macs such memory is listed for, the memory is not the cause of the issue and never has been.



  • rcarmic Calculating status...
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    Aug 1, 2013 4:12 PM (in response to gadget_aussie_man)

    I can only state, in my case, as fact, that removing the 16GB OWC ram and installing Kingston KTA-MB1600 ram solved my problem.


    IMO, there is an issue with OWC ram installed in the late 2012 Mac Mini with dual monitor configurations with the Thnunder Bold Display.


    I contacted OWC on this issue and received no acknowlegment of the issue and only suggested I return the ram for testing.

  • OWC Larry Level 1 Level 1 (45 points)
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    Aug 1, 2013 4:23 PM (in response to rcarmic)

    It is an issue completely non-reproduceably as of mid-June (with current EFI and O updates) on a large number of Mac minis we've tested with - 2012 models - with multiple dual display/dual thunderbolt scenarios.


    I am not questioning what worked for you at the time - but am stating there is more to this than memory regardless if a memory swap took care of the issue with your specific Mac mini. To that matter - i'd love for you to reach out to me personally with consideration given for us to attain the Mac mini you have if we could first get you to install (we'd provide without cost) our 16GB memory set and advise if issue still occuring with current updates.


    I maintain that the issue is not one related to our memoy. Is not confined even to systems you can update Ram in. And is one we'd sorely like to see in house as the issue itself is definitely particular to specific Mac units vs. simply all encompassing.


    Further - it is an issue with multiple interactions that Apple has, for the most part, had apparent success in eliminating via the various updates.



  • Kung-Foo-Kamel Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Aug 1, 2013 4:43 PM (in response to OWC Larry)

    Id happily test your ram, Id even purchase it if it works,


    My system ATM.


      Model Identifier:          Macmini6,2

      Processor Name:          Intel Core i7

      Processor Speed:          2.3 GHz

      Number of Processors:          1

      Total Number of Cores:          4

      L2 Cache (per Core):          256 KB

      L3 Cache:          6 MB

      Memory:          8 GB

      Boot ROM Version:          MM61.0106.B03

      SMC Version (system):          2.8f0


    Im about to purchase 2 x 4GB chips today but I would prefer 2 x 8GB, I will post here and in another thread, what model brand and specs have worked form, it does appear to be quite random, and yes not specific as one person I have read has had Crucial ram work and another did not, then one user has had success with certified ram from a Kinston and another has also had success with there HyperX, it could very well be just one particuler spec on the ram that cause's this issue, as there may be a slight difference or spec/timing change between batches fom a manufacturer.

  • rcarmic Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Aug 1, 2013 4:53 PM (in response to gadget_aussie_man)

    Thank you OWC Larry,


    I would not be prepared to forward you my Mac Mini as my problem has been solved as I indicated. For the benifit of this community, I would be open to installing a second set of  OWC 16GB memory and report back to this community and OWC the results.


    If you would like to proceed you can contact me with information supplied in your SI-3551666.


    Thank you for your attention to this matter.

  • OWC Larry Level 1 Level 1 (45 points)
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    Aug 1, 2013 5:05 PM (in response to rcarmic)

    Thanks and I can understand the Mac mini send in bit.... we will be in contact with you very coon concerning the memory though... and will look forward to the results. if the results still in line with prior, I will seek to come up with some arrangement - even if means advancing a replacement mini - so we can get a hold of your system just for the sake of having something that is testable/repeatable. Thanks!!!

  • rcarmic Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Aug 1, 2013 5:09 PM (in response to gadget_aussie_man)

    OWC Larry,


    I look forward to working with you on resolving this issue.

  • OWC Larry Level 1 Level 1 (45 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Aug 1, 2013 5:09 PM (in response to Kung-Foo-Kamel)

    Please email me owc at macsales dot com - and we'll get it going. Thanks.

  • OWC Larry Level 1 Level 1 (45 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Aug 1, 2013 5:10 PM (in response to rcarmic)

    Thanks again - appreciated!

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