Graphics card failures, angry customers, and a class action lawsuit

I’m part of the #mbp2011 club – MacBook Pro models sold in 2011 are dropping like flies




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If you’re the proud owner of a 15″ or 17″ MacBook Pro, take note; if you purchased your beloved MacBook Pro in 2011, keep an extra careful eye on your precious cargo. We’re over 750 pages into a post on Apple’s own Community Support forums, hundreds of Twitter posts later, and countless cases of defective MacBook Pro logic boards later, it’s become apparent to – well – just about everybody paying attention that there’s something wrong with these machines. Thousands have revealed that their 15″ or 17″ MacBook Pro, purchased in 2011, have suddenly just… stopped working; including my own. The root of the problem apparently lies within these notebook’s graphics cards, which are integrated into the logic board.

The signs vary slightly, but just about every time inevitably lead to a single solution – replacement of the entire logic board. I was working on my three year old notebook like normal yesterday when all of a sudden the screen went white. Thinking it was nothing but a system crash, I held down the power button and turned the machine back on – only to be greeted by the familiar Apple logo distorted, with the entire screen covered in a putrid shade of green. What’s worse, upon booting the operating system my entire notebook crashes nearly every single time; for an entire day now, my only solution has been to run the machine in single user mode… which is hardly a solution at all.

Browsing through Apple’s own support community reveals that others have similar issues ranging in severity. Some notebooks appear to work fine for a couple of minutes, booting up and allowing the user to work without a problem, until the graphics of the machine suddenly gets distorted leading to a lockup. Another common one sees the notebook working when the operating system is forced to only recognize these notebook’s integrated Intel graphics using a tool such as gfxCardStatus, however this solution didn’t work for me. One unlucky MacBook Pro owner has seen four of these 2011 MacBook Pros see logic board failures, suggesting that issues with these models may be more widespread than first believed.IMG_2976

The worst part about all of this isn’t even that Apple sold defective machines to customers for almost an entire year – though, that is pretty bad in and of itself – it’s that the company is now refusing to even acknowledge that there’s an issue. Despite a ton of pressure from customers, the support forum topic, and even an entire event dedicated to raising awareness on social networks by customers bitten by this bad Apple, Apple has remained silent on the issue – refusing to acknowledge a widespread issue nor issuing any sort of recall. Which means that, if you’re like me and the warranty is up on your MacBook Pro, you’re looking at a logic board replacement of around $750 just to get a laptop that, for all you know, could fail in a matter of weeks, months or just a few short years all over again.

In order to force Apple’s hand on the issue, a class action lawsuit has been launched against the company on behalf of owners of the 2011 MacBook Pro models effected, as well as owners of some other Mac models that might suffer similar issues. The lawsuit claims that Apple “had knowledge of the defect, yet willfully and intentionally decided to hide the defect, resulting in continuing damage to the Class.”

We’ve reached out to Apple for comment and will update this post with any response or information we might receive.


  • MBP2011

    Logic board replacement lasted 9 months thing just keeps failing due to faulty GPUs save the $750 bucks its not a good investment