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Note: He does good work, but he's not much of a conversationalist! :-)
RNR replied that our early 2011 motherboards were 6750M-only. They could not put 6770Ms on them. He did not offer to refund the extra we paid for the 6770M chips. He did say that they used the latest versions of the 6750M chips that have better cooling. eBay deletes your messages after a few months, so I no longer have a record of what we asked and were answered a year and a half ago.

I guess yours was a slightly later revision logic board than ours are, so yours could take the 6770M. Hope all of our replacements hold up until we can get decent new MacBooks.
 


... Hope all of our replacements hold up until we can get decent new MacBooks.
"Decent new MacBooks" (MacBook Pros) - that's easy:
  • Deep six the butterfly keyboard. If that means slightly thicker, so be it.
  • Go back to the older (smaller) trackpad. The current size just gets in the way.
  • Removable/replaceable SSD. Hey; the enclosure is thicker, so we have room now.
  • Probably have room for two RAM modules, side-by side.
  • Oh, yeah; that weird touch-bar thing? Kill it.
Regarding the current price drops on MacBooks/Pros appearing all over the web: There's nothing Apple can do to get me to buy any new Mac portable at any realistic price point. As they are all essentially disposables, spending anything above $500 isn't going to happen. (What's that, I hear you asking, "What about iPhones?" I don't buy iPhones, either.)
 


"Decent new MacBooks" (MacBook Pros) - that's easy:
  • Deep six the butterfly keyboard. If that means slightly thicker, so be it.
  • Go back to the older (smaller) trackpad. The current size just gets in the way.
  • Removable/replaceable SSD. Hey; the enclosure is thicker, so we have room now.
  • Probably have room for two RAM modules, side-by side.
  • Oh, yeah; that weird touch-bar thing? Kill it.
While we're on a wish list...
  • Make the storage use industry-standard NVMe with an M.2 form factor, so upgrades are possible without custom-built proprietary modules and all the headaches that come with them.
  • Put the battery on a screwed-down frame like it was on the pre-Retina MacBook Air. That was quick and easy to replace without replacing unrelated parts (like the entire top case, including keyboard and trackpad).
But I'm not holding my breath waiting for Apple to sell such a computer.
 


I have an unusual problem with a mid-2012 13" MacBook Pro. Normally the machine works flawlessly, but this evening the trackpad started playing up. I'm running macOS 10.12.5.

I run a background app called 'Caffeine' to keep the laptop awake when on battery mode; this evening I left the device for a few minutes running happily on my desk, and when I returned it had gone to sleep. This is not normal behaviour.

On waking it up, the mouse pointer started behaving extremely erratically - jumping around the screen without my input, registering clicks incorrectly, and tracking eccentrically. I restarted the laptop, but the problem persisted (although no problems using an external mouse). So I restarted again, in safe mode, and after about 10 minutes the system simply shut itself down without warning. I restarted again, in normal boot mode, and everything was fine for 20 minutes or so, but now the mouse pointer/trackpad is playing up again.

Any ideas? There are electrical storms around, and the air is considerably more humid than usual (I'm in central Michigan), so I'm wondering if that has something to do with it. Or simply if something on the logic board is expiring. The problem persists if I'm plugged into the (Apple) a/c adaptor or not, so I'm guessing it's not a grounding issue.
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
I have an unusual problem with a mid-2012 13" MacBook Pro....
I don't have any good idea what's happening there, but a couple of related thoughts for what they're worth:
  • I'd check to make sure the battery hasn't swollen (impinging on the trackpad)
  • Does it work OK in clamshell mode? (Do you have an external display to to that?)
  • I run Macs Fan Control, and I'd suggest trying that for better thermal monitoring/management.
  • USB 3 cables and Thunderbolt cables (and video cables) can create strange interference problems - has anything changed in that area, and are there any of those you can eliminate from the immediate environment?
 


I don't have any good idea what's happening there, but a couple of related thoughts for what they're worth:
  • I'd check to make sure the battery hasn't swollen (impinging on the trackpad)
  • Does it work OK in clamshell mode? (Do you have an external display to to that?)
  • I run Macs Fan Control, and I'd suggest trying that for better thermal monitoring/management.
  • USB 3 cables and Thunderbolt cables (and video cables) can create strange interference problems - has anything changed in that area, and are there any of those you can eliminate from the immediate environment?
  • USB3 cables crossing over USB2 cables will cause interference.
  • Plug in a mouse and see if that works properly (and for how long).
  • Try booting from another disk - maybe safe boot mode, as well.
If the battery shows a full charge (and it's a good battery - but do check Ric's suggestion about a swollen battery!) - and if the power adapter is fine, then I'd suspect the motherboard, but if the trackpad keeps acting goofy (especially after a safe boot), open up the unit and disconnect the trackpad. Run with a USB-connected mouse.

If the spontaneous power-down continues (and you see the battery level remaining high, and the icon shows it's getting power from the adapter), it does sound like the motherboard. That would be a shame, as that 2012 model was the gold standard.
 


Good advice, thanks. The problem is still persisting, but intermittently, both when on the AC adaptor and when running from the battery. I don't have any peripherals plugged in. So, I will open it up and inspect the battery this weekend. I see that replacement trackpads are around $50 from Amazon, and the swap looks relatively easy, so that is the next step.
 


So, to follow-up on my trackpad issue, it's possible that the battery was the culprit.

I removed the old battery from my MacBook Pro (which is around 5 years old at this point; note that you'll need a tri-point screwdriver if you do this). There was a small degree of swelling/give around its periphery (a blistering approx. 2mm x 3mm), which may have impinged on the trackpad. I also took the opportunity to make sure all connectors were tight on the logic board and used a can of air to de-fluff things.

On reassembly, everything's been working fine for the past couple of hours, so hopefully the issue is solved. I'll dispose of the old battery through the proper channels at my university.
 


"Decent new MacBooks" (MacBook Pros) - that's easy:
  • Deep six the butterfly keyboard. If that means slightly thicker, so be it.
  • Go back to the older (smaller) trackpad. The current size just gets in the way.
  • Removable/replaceable SSD. Hey; the enclosure is thicker, so we have room now.
  • Probably have room for two RAM modules, side-by side.
  • Oh, yeah; that weird touch-bar thing? Kill it.
In other words, a mid-2012 MacBook Pro with updated components.

Come to think of it, for the Pro desktop line, all Apple would need to do would be to update a mid-2012 Mac Pro with 2019 components.

Does anyone doubt that Apple would sell enormous numbers of Pro desktops and laptops if they took those basic 2012 designs and updated them with current CPU/GPU/RAM/SSD components and external interfaces?

The fact that Apple doesn't sell such machines is all the evidence one needs of the indifference, if not actual contempt, that Apple has for the needs of its users.
 


The fact that Apple doesn't sell such machines is all the evidence one needs of the indifference, if not actual contempt, that Apple has for the needs of its users.
Apple has a long history of thinking that it knows better than its users. To be fair, at times they have been right. But not recently - form over function is the rule - the constant striving for thinness, despite the problem. The removal and obfuscation of useful UI functions is immensely frustrating.

It may be that they do not have computers as a priority - it sure seems that way.
 


... The fact that Apple doesn't sell such machines is all the evidence one needs of the indifference, if not actual contempt, that Apple has for the needs of its users.
Although my first response would be to agree with you 100%, I take a step back and realize that I am no longer the kind of customer Apple actually wants. First, and above all, Apple wants you to own an iPhone because that is the gateway drug that hooks you into its ecosystem. (I use Android.)

From there, you find that iCloud is a necessity, so you're introduced to, and can accept, the subscription model. iMusic, etc., soon follow. Then an Apple Watch and an iPad and - whups! - now you need larger iCloud storage. Oh, you want a computer? Sure, we have these MacBooks with an OS and apps that are dumbed down to match the dreck we foisted off on you in our iOS devices. Oh, you want a real computer? Oh, well... okay. You're already used to overpaying for iOS devices, so we're sure you won't mind paying for underpowered, poorly designed MacBook Pros. Hey! You use an iPhone, so using a keyboard isn't important, but you do love how thin and light it is, right? (No, Apple; I do not.)
 


In other words, a mid-2012 MacBook Pro with updated components.

Come to think of it, for the Pro desktop line, all Apple would need to do would be to update a mid-2012 Mac Pro with 2019 components.

Does anyone doubt that Apple would sell enormous numbers of Pro desktops and laptops if they took those basic 2012 designs and updated them with current CPU/GPU/RAM/SSD components and external interfaces?

The fact that Apple doesn't sell such machines is all the evidence one needs of the indifference, if not actual contempt, that Apple has for the needs of its users.
An updated 2012 sounds appealing. I really miss the features like the [earlier] changeable battery, SD card slot, USB3 connectors, ethernet, built in CD/DVD drive.... Everything now requires externals, dongles, adapters. Ugh. To attach anything, I need to use an adapter with devices flopping and dangling precariously. Even connecting a USB flash drive makes the computer look like an octopus. I'm just not relating to the 2018 very well. I feel really inconvenienced by the restricted connectivity. When I first got it, I tried doing my Time Machine backups wirelessly to my Time Capsule drive. Ha! That only takes hours... I finally gave up because I don't want to leave my laptop open, running, and unattended for 5 hours to complete a Time Machine backup.
 


Although my first response would be to agree with you 100%, I take a step back and realize that I am no longer the kind of customer Apple actually wants.
Am I alone (or horribly deluded) to think that while this may appear to be paying in the short term (for Apple), it's not going to last? In my opinion they're chasing a fickle crowd who will ultimately abandon them 'fore too long.
 
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While we're on a wish list...
You guys with the wish lists are pretty much describing a Dell XPS... which, unfortunately, can't run macOS with GPU support.

If you can switch to Linux, then the case is clear. Apple has become a non-contender in terms of laptop hardware.
 


In my opinion they're chasing a fickle crowd who will ultimately abandon them 'fore too long.
Well it certainly isn't the majority of the crowd that congregates here. I get the impression that many would not choose Apple today, and many of us are here because they used to provide the hardware and software combinations that we liked. They're a different company now. I do wonder if their bubble will burst.
 


I was the person who originally had my Early 2011 MacBook Pro 15” repaired at RNRComputer. It’s been working fine since, except that the i7 CPU seems to run hotter than it did before the repair. I wondered if sufficient heat sink compound was applied at reassembly....
I went ahead and did the same to my Early 2011 17" MacBook Pro 8,3. So far, so good, but it's only been one day back.

With his shipping cost included, I paid $201 to them via PayPal. I also paid USPS $26 to ship it in a 2-day Priority Large box to Brooklyn, NY with $500 of insurance included. (I waited all day on Saturday for its return, because the USPS website tracking said it was due before 8 pm that day, but it actually came on Monday.)

I am considering sending my other exact same 17" MacBook Pro model to him to have the same thing done. It was fixed for free by Apple about 14 months ago in the last few weeks of my extended warranty, but this one will fail at some point also. Since RNR Computer is installing a new 2018 version of the Radeon HD 6770M card without the original problems vs. simply replacing the old logic board with another logic board with a 2011 Radeon video card due to fail at any time, I might get the other one fixed while I still have the opportunity. I will give this one some time, though, to see how it goes.
 


I went ahead and did the same to my Early 2011 17" MacBook Pro 8,3. So far, so good, but it's only been one day back.
With his shipping cost included, I paid $201 to them via PayPal. I also paid USPS $26 to ship it in a 2-day Priority Large box to Brooklyn, NY with $500 of insurance included. (I waited all day on Saturday for its return, because the USPS website tracking said it was due before 8 pm that day, but it actually came on Monday.)
I am considering sending my other exact same 17" MacBook Pro model to him to have the same thing done. It was fixed for free by Apple about 14 months ago in the last few weeks of my extended warranty, but this one will fail at some point also. Since RNR Computer is installing a new 2018 version of the Radeon HD 6770M card without the original problems vs. simply replacing the old logic board with another logic board with a 2011 Radeon video card due to fail at any time, I might get the other one fixed while I still have the opportunity. I will give this one some time, though, to see how it goes.
What is the contact info for RNR Computers? I have a 2011 MacBook Pro that Apple has replaced three logic boards in, because of the ATI chip failing.
 




...except that the i7 CPU seems to run hotter than it did before the repair. I wondered if sufficient heat sink compound was applied at reassembly.
I remembered this comment of yours and have been keeping an eye on the fans on my recently repaired 17" when it switches to the discrete 6770 card, but so far it seems about the same as before. In "theory" it should be the same.
 


...Still not Metal 2 capable. Were I to effect the repair today, I’d see about getting a 2012 motherboard with the non-problematic GPU plus USB 3 and Handoff-capable Bluetooth.
I asked RNR Computer specifically about whether the new 6770M card would be Metal-compatible, and his first reply was:
"6770 will perform better than your 6750 and it is metal compatible."
I brought this up again after shipping the laptop to him and I said:

"It will interesting to see if the new card will allow me to install OS 10.14 Mohave now that this is supposed to be metal-compatible. I read that only the AMD 7xxx Series cards or up would work (https://www.macobserver.com/tmo/article/which-macs-support-os-x-el-capitans-metal), but hopefully this 6770 will."

He then replied with:
officially not supported on 10.14. it doesn't have to do with the hardware on your machine, it's APPLE set and the info inside the bios.
I don't have time right now to mess with testing, but I wonder if the dosdude Mojave Patcher actually tweaks the BIOS code. And if so, then find out if the HD 6770M card is actually Metal-compatible. I might be able to run Mojave on my 2011 17" MacBook Pro and still use the upgraded discrete card.

Does anybody have any experience with this or have any thoughts on whether this can work? If not, I will give it a shot at some point and let you know. If it doesn't work, I can run out the clock with Sierra.
 


I asked RNR Computer specifically about whether the new 6770M card would be Metal-compatible, and his first reply was...
That would be interesting, but I believe Apple still excludes the entire series of AMD 67xx GPUs from Metal 2 compatibility.

I suppose a possibility would be to hack the installer to allow it to install on that model MacBook Pro. I, long ago, upgraded the Bluetooth card to one that is Handoff-compatible and supports Bluetooth 4.0 (using one from a Mac Pro), and I recall the hack to make that work (which I never did) was to diddle with the installer. I suppose it’s something to try when or if I have free time to venture down the rabbit hole.
 


That would be interesting... I suppose a possibility would be to hack the installer to allow it to install on that model MacBook Pro.
Walter, did you happen to take a look at the dosdude1 macOS Mojave Patcher Tool? This BIOS stuff is really above my pay grade... but, if RNR Computer is correct and the card is Metal-compatible, it might be possible.

A few months ago, I put a Samsung 500GB SSD in my old MacBook Pro Core 2 Duo 2.53GHz 15" (Late 2008) with 8 GB of RAM. The video is shot with a big fat black vertical line if using the built-in screen but is fine when I run it into an external monitor.

I used the dosdude1 macOS Sierra Patcher Tool to install Sierra 10.12.6, and now this MacBook Pro is very usable. It's fine for homework and even running Logic X when we need a third computer.

My point is that Dosdude1 does excellent work, and if the 6770M card is indeed compatible, maybe my two 2011 i7 MacBook Pro 17's can make it up to Mojave. Dosdude1 states that you can run Mojave by just using the integrated Intel 3000 graphics, but I need the discrete card for FCP X. If I can't use the 6770M card, I'll stick with Sierra.
 


A few weeks back there were rumors around regarding a new, possibly 16-inch MacBook Pro. Was there any speculation about timing or potential release dates? My daughter's MacBook Pro appears to have died and I'm debating whether to buy now or wait a month or so.
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
A few weeks back there were rumors around regarding a new, possibly 16-inch MacBook Pro. Was there any speculation about timing or potential release dates? My daughter's MacBook Pro appears to have died and I'm debating whether to buy now or wait a month or so.
It doesn't really look imminent - maybe late in 2019? It will be interesting to see what Apple does at WWDC in June, but I'd be surprised to see an updated MacBook Pro and even surprised if Apple finally manages to bring out its promised replacement for the 6-year-old Mac Pro it's still selling.
 


I asked RNR Computer specifically about whether the new 6770M card would be Metal-compatible, and his first reply was:
"6770 will perform better than your 6750 and it is metal compatible."
I couldn't find anything online that validated their statement that the 2018 AMD HD 6770 card would be Metal-compatible for Mojave, so I emailed RNR again.

Short answer: No.

I don't believe these guys (or guy) were intentionally being misleading. It does appear that English is not their first language and that they are hardware, and not software, specialists, and they not a Mac-only repair company.

It was all worth a shot and the extra research to check out possible Mojave compatibility, but I'll be fine with Sierra until something that works better for me comes along.

I am also still considering sending them my other 2011 MacBook Pro 17" in the next few months, even though it was repaired by Apple under warranty a little over a year ago. I'd like to get it "fixed" properly while the opportunity still exists. I love these MacBook Pros and they are plenty powerful enough to do what I need to do on a daily basis, which includes my Logic X and 1080p FCP X work.
 


Note that the 6770 is "Metal"-compatible, so you can run High Sierra, but not "Metal 2"-compatible, which is required for Mojave.

One could run DosDude1's patch, but I'm reluctant to do so as long as High Sierra is supported because of the graphic issues that still exist with the patch.

The newer features in Mojave (which I am running on a newer MacBook Pro) are not terribly compelling anyway. Plus Mojave broke Acrobat 9 Pro (which worked with some issues under High Sierra), which is the last version that uses the sensible menu instead of hiding features in a stupid tool sidebar in the windows with the document.
 



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