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Released October 24, 2011 / 2.2, 2.4, or 2.5 GHz Quad-core Intel Core i7 Processor

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Late 2011 MacBook Pro 15” graphics issue - but different..?

Mine is the one with i7 processor 512mb Intel graphics and 1gb dedicated AMD GPU.

So here’s what I got so far:

-tried that method posted on macrumours: single used then nvram fa4ce28d-b62f-4c99-9cc3-6815686e30f9:gpu-power-prefs=%01%00%00%00

It doesn’t work. Actually most of the time I was unable to even access single user mode for whatever reason.

-tried holding power button 15s with partial success: it worked and the laptop got pretty quick but so does the fans that would go crazy loud and wouldn’t go down with fan control as the sensors were disabled.

But that was fine as a first step because after that I reset the SMC/PRAM and the fans got normal then I was able to finally boot into online recovery mode - couldn’t before and was unable to boot USB either - then restore my Time Machine Backup.

Now the laptop behaves somewhat normal:

-it works properly for a while even with graphics intensive apps but it can get glitchy randomly. If I reboot it would work fine again. Temps are always within range - below 70 Celsius.

-the oddest issue of them all though is that the battery is there, the tray icon shows it properly, system manager shows it’s charging and the light on the charger is on (green though) but the laptop dies if I unplug the charger. This has been happening since before I started to get graphics issues.

So I get the feeling that yeah my graphics could be dying but it’s not dead yet as a matter of fact the system runs much faster when the dedicated graphics is selected (un-tic the box on power management in system preferences).

Could it be then that the SMC is faulty and causing the battery  issues and the graphics glitches?

I saw Louis Rossmann on YouTube showing that sometimes the SMC would behave erratically if the nearby resistors are faulty but how can I make sure and perhaps fix this if I don’t even know where the SMC is on this board..? Is there a link where I could download the PDF schematics?

An accurate picture showing where it is would be even better :)

I seriously believe it’s more likely to be an SMC issue than the graphics this time and I’m considering getting some flux on the SMC - or any faulty resistors around it if I can find it on the board - and try the ‘baking trick’ to see what happens...

Update (11/20/2018)

I can run CineBench and I can use Logic Pro, Final Cut and Photoshop even with the auto-switch graphics disabled - thus forcing it to use the AMD GPU. No glitches anymore, no issues so far.

But it still won’t run on battery: battery show on sys tray, shows on system information and both charger and the indicator less on the side lights up but if I pull the cord the laptop dies…

Update (11/20/2018)

Completely different MacBook but he described exactly the same issue I’m having with mine:

Update (11/26/2018)

This is EXACTLY the same issue I'm having now with the exactly same board!

Difference is that it seemed to be the graphics but now the graphics are working fine but the laptop won't run on battery even though the battery shows up and charges.

Looked very close at the board with a magnifier at the same components showed on this video and didn't see anything wrong - might be busted but doesn't look like there's anything visually wrong.

More interesting: I left the laptop with no battery and no charger for a couple days and after watching this video and checking the components I plugged the battery and it powered on fans spins and all - with ALL other cables disconnected though.

So I put everything back together, tried again and… No such luck…

Then I proceeded to unplug/re-plug one by one and still nothing… Now what…? :/

Update (11/26/2018)

Schematics attached


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Sorry your GPU issue is not related to your SMC in as far as the SMC is not causing your GPU issue!

The SMC will encounter an overheating issue with your GPU failure and will ramp up the fan.

Your issues are revolve around the failing of your GPU. Time for a new logic board.

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The fans going at full means I ‘bypassed’ the SMC according to what I’ve read online. Nothing to do with temps

Battery not being recognised could also be a SMC issue according to this:

Plus as I mentioned above the GPU works perfectly when SMC is bypassed it would only get eventually glitchy when I’m running the laptop without the ‘bypass’.

Those are the reasons I suspect the SMC is faulty - or some resistors that regulates the SMC input/output

I’m not saying it can’t be the GPU but it’s not because that’s the most common issue in this model that it would apply in this particular case...

Which brings me back to my question about the schematics or picture of the SMC in this board. It would be very helpful if I could have a look with a magnifier if I knew where the chip is.


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