Danes 'prove' sudden iBook death syndrome
Danish turnover Apple
The Consumer Complaints Board in Denmark claims to have evidence of a original design defect in the iBook G4 that has been hotly denied by Apple.
Many iBook G4 customers complained that after about one year's use, the laptop acquired the nasty habit of powering down and greeting the users with a blank screen and a loud whirring fan on start-up.
Laptop dissectors soon fingered a logic board failure for the sc. Creative, but decidedly not iSleek methods to fix the problem were invented from c-clamping their shiny white laptop on a table in order to squeeze the logic board to shoving cardboard shims in place to make it reboot.
Apple had rejected attempts to have the fault repaired or returned on the grounds there is no question of a design fault.
But now the Danes have something to say about that. Just as Denmark forced Sweden to pay a war indemnity of 1 million silver riksdaler after the 1611-1613 Kalmar War, they hope to squeeze some cash out of Apple.
After regular complaints, the National Consumer Agency in Denmark sent a suspect iMac G4 to Delta, an independent electronics laboratory to have it examined. (In much the same way Denmark's Niels Bohr examined quantum theory to develop the first working model for the atom in 1913.)
The investigation showed solder joints between two components had broken, so a current could no longer pass through them. The breakage was found to occur because the joints loosen slightly every time the computer is turned on and off.
"It is a bit like a person dying a little bit every time he breathes because the cells break down," C.C.B. lawyer Frederik Navne waxed poetically. "In the same way, the computer dies a little every time you turn it on and off."
As a result, the C.C.B. determined that Danish consumers will be able to return computers with the fault to Apple. Apple International is beginning to settle a number of cases in Denmark on the basis of the investigation.
The board now wants Apple to acknowledge the alleged design fault outside of Denmark's borders — not unlike how world recognized the Danish drummer for Metallica, Lars Ulrich.
And since we can't think of a way to fit it in: Denmark's national anthem is "Der er et yndigt land," and the country has a total area of 43,094 square kilometers. ®
No Nobel prize for those damn Danes; especially after they kicked our collective arses in 1613 !!
How much do
iBricks sell for these days?
Area of Denmark
Didn't you forget Greenland??
I saw alot of video issues on an IBM T40 do to flexing. It was do to a bad design of a different kind, and what I mean is they didnt design it from the stand point of how the user would inter act with the unit. What cause the board flexing was how users picked up the T40. They would pick it up by the palm rest, thus causing the board to flex. The later models had a re enforced frame so not to alow board flexing when picked up by the palm rest.
Some times you do have to design stuf as what would happen if no one who used a laptop before touches it, or when people do stupid things. I know you cant plan for certian things, but board flexing should be one, since laptops are often moved aroundwhile on.
Surface mount chips all can have issues
My daughter's clamshell iBook was an ebay purchase. The seller said it was pristine, but within a day or two of receiving it, a six year old girl was frustrated and tearful about the sound that would come and go. Using external speakers through the stereo audio port would sometimes work (or iPod earbuds), but not reliably. Sometimes one could press on the case next to that port and the sound would come back. After a few months of this, I disassembled the iBook, got out the dissecting microscope and saw that many of the leads on the IC next to the audio port had lifted from the board.
I have a very nice soldering kit, so with it, a coffee-free morning and the scope, we carefully resoldered the chip to the board -- kissing each lead until the solder below melted. Sound was completely restored.
I've currently got a G4 iBook that will blink off when lifted from a table. I've thought it was a bad battery contact ... now I think I need to walk the boards to look for more loose leads on chips. Many thanks for the article -- Legos and Metallica: never thought there was a connection there.
What someone else attempted to describe is thermal hysteresis (or thermal fatigue / annularization) of the solder, where the heat/cool cycles will propagate minute imperfections of a solder joint into cracks that eventually lead to intermittant open contacts -- and a faulty circuit. Used to be the most common failure of the power Caps in the 128K/512/Plus series of Macs -- and Pina's 'Lost Mac Scrolls' helped us salvage many a goner Mac. Looks like this problem will never go away completely so long as we have solder and heat. Maybe once we go to solid state 'hard drives' and LED displays, a lot of that heat will be managed better -- but ANY electronic device will always have some risk of this aging phenomenon. The old tin/lead is stronger than tin/silver/copper now in production -- we'll have to see if going green means filling landfills faster...