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MacBook Pro 17" (A1212)

Submitted By: powerbookmedic
Approved On: 9/10/09
Description: This take-apart guide is for the 17" MacBook Pro.

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Comments (91):

Daniel York
5 months ago
I have a 2008 17 in Mac Book Pro. Working fine but the heat issue they all have, I closed the top it went to sleep... For good... Wont start, Chime or anything. I held down the power button and you could hear the hard drive start to spin up for about 3 seconds then with your ear to the computer can hear a faint beep and goes off. Pulled the ram 1 at a time and even switched them to see if that might be the problem. With both out it made a loud beep about every 5 seconds. Help... Do I need a new hard drive, Mother Board, Ram... Also what about the fans. Being 6 years old now do they need replacing? I will call you tomorrow so this may get answered but I am stuck. Thank you and thank you for the great videos you provide on this site. I work in Haiti and will need to order what you suggest to fix this computer.
JWSands
7 months ago
I have the 1212. Couple months ago, after working for a period of time, the screen would begin to get mosaic (corrupted squares on screen) in certain horizontal regions and then lock up. After a period of several weeks, the same would repeat, but at closer times to start-up. (I thought it was a corrupt video driver.) The severity of the mosaic and time from from start-up increased to where when I turn it on, it immediately goes to a mosaic pattern for a few seconds and then appears to shut down. The "Geek Squad" told me it was the logic board that needed replaced. Does that sound right to you and is there anything else that could be doing that?
benji12
10 months ago
hello, I have a problem, the pc starts with the ignition noise until the apple with the image and then turn off. It has done since he fell (50 cm ...) I tested without hard disk without ram, the problem does not change, what do you think? thank you
Powerbook Medic
1 year ago
@Mike - I would start with the magsafe board. That is responsible for the audio and sending power to the battery. Worst case would be the logic board.
Mike
1 year ago
I have a 17" Titanium. My audio no longer works, and even with a new battery, it doesn't power up unless plugged into power cable. What is the problem?
Powerbook Medic
1 year ago
@Sharrond - I would try to boot up from your install disk and see if there is an issue with your hard drive. You should also be able to hold down D on boot to run a system test
Sharrond
1 year ago
I love your website and assembly guides, because they have helped me throughout the years. I have a 17 MacBook Pro (A1151 Snow Leopard) that chimes and boots up to a superbly clean screen with an Apple logo, but the spinning wheel never starts spinning beneath the apple. Therefore, I cannnot get past the initial grey apple start screen. Do you have anything for sale that can help solve this?
Powerbook Medic
1 year ago
@Wayne - the product page for the left fan has many options depending on what model you have. You may have selected the wrong option or we may have accidentally sent you a different one. I'd advise contacting our customer support department and they'll help figure it out.
Wayne
1 year ago
I ordered a left fan unit for my powerbook Pro 17", but there is a difference in the conectors. The PBM fan uses white larger connectors than the logic board can accept. The video shows the type my logic board supports but the cables are in a different location and can't reach the logic board connector.
Nic
1 year ago
I have a pro a1212 that has a black screen (flashesthen turns off), no chime, the MagSafe connector is a dim green, and the front sleep light turns on that fades away. Any ideas anyone?
Powerbook Medic
1 year ago
@Anne - I would try the inverter cable next. It may have gotten damaged and is shorting out in the hinge area. It may have even killed the replacement inverter board.
Anne
1 year ago
I have an A1212 whose backlight isn't working. You can see the images on the screen using a secondary light source and the computer is still outputting video to an external monitor with no problem. I replaced the inverter and the display worked fine for several hours but then quit again. It has, a few times, randomly come on upon boot but always dims to black after a few minutes. There's no discoloration or lines or anything when it is on or fading. Should I try to replace the inverter cables or do you think there may be another issue? (I should probably also note that the laptop was dropped about a foot while splayed open and the lid will no longer stay closed due to tension at the hinges. The display only stopped working correctly after someone took the laptop apart in an attempt to fix the lid closing issue.)
Joe
1 year ago
my anty laptop started making a craking sound when it is been boot and nothing display on the screen. After keeping d laptop 4 long witout using it. Pls what is the problem?
Powerbook Medic
2 years ago
@koocm - yes you can use the same tape. The A1261 has some slight differences, but you should be able to figure it out going by this guide.
koocm
2 years ago
..also do these instructions apply to the A1261.
koocm
2 years ago
can you reuse the tape and stickers underneath the keyboard when reassembling or do you need to replace all this with fresh tape? thank you
Laura
2 years ago
Thank you so much for providing these repair tutorials. I can't even imagine how much money I saved by installing a new keyboard and optical drive myself. Having the step by step guide right there to watch while I did the installation was invaluable! You guys rock!
Abu
2 years ago
This is a very great tutorial.However, it is missing part on how to remove the hinges from the bezel. The LCD video ends with the whole bezel assembly being held up. This is required for replacing a damaged cable or snapped bezel.
Powerbook Medic
2 years ago
@david - the inverter sits underneath the LCD, so you do have to get into the display, but you don't have to remove the LCD.
david
2 years ago
hi david again, i just purchased a new screen from you and fitted it and am having problems which I was told by kyle that it is probably the inverter board. I gather i have to pull the lcd out again to get to it by the video? ( :-( )Also once i get the screen out is it easy to relace the inverter board? Thanks David
Powerbook Medic
2 years ago
@david - it would be in the display and LCD section as the inverter board sits right under the LCD.
david
2 years ago
I am needing to replace the inverter board on my 17" mbp, can you tell me which video shows this please?
Crama
2 years ago
The video is useful, but would be much better had you refrained from adding the background music; it adds nothing, and actually takes away a bit from hearing your voice. Secondly, it would be good, as someone commented previously, to use some sort of pointer, when describing parts in the video as opposed to your finger. Thirdly, if possible, it would be much more useful to have someone working the camera as you are taking parts off, zooming in as you are working.
Pieter
2 years ago
Hi, first of all, big thanks for the clear instruction video's on this site! I have a MBP 17" (A1212), and replaced the lcd screen about 6 months ago. A week ago the screen started to show distortion and green and red pixels. I thought it was my videocard (ATI x1600), but it turns out it is the videocable connector. I discovered this while tightening and loosening the torx screw on the backcase, where the RAM sits, and then the one close to the videocable connector on the logicboard. My screen would go from normal to distorted to black when I tightened up this screw. When it's loose, the screen works as normal. I also noticed that the videocable connector on the logicboard has a little strip on it that probably contacts with the topcase (is that for grounding or so?). Possible issues are: the connector solderings came a bit loose while plugging in and out the videocable, or somehow this little strip on the connector itself has or has not to connect to the topcase (could I shield it with some tape?). For the latter I have no clue if it matters. If loose solderings on the logicboard are the case: could I do the baking trick (seen on youtube video's)? Thanks in advance.
umesh
3 years ago
how to download
Powerbook Medic
3 years ago
@bill - these are just take-apart guides. It is up to you to determine where you need to stop to do a specific repair.
bill
3 years ago
Is it really necessary to disassemble the entire machine to replace the left fan? It looks like it would be possible to replace it w/o having to take out the logic board.
mosesk
3 years ago
thanks for your reply. i thought about the driver issue. but i have installed both 10.5 and 10.6., both more recent that the original OS. As far as "partial connections" of course I have tried to make sure everything is fitting tight. but ???
Powerbook Medic
3 years ago
@mosesk - that sounds like the driver for the iSight may be missing or corrupt. If you are running an operating system older than what originally came with your machine, this could be the issue, or you may need to reinstall the OS. It could however also mean the connection is getting a partial connection inside and may be damaged or not inserted all the way.
mosesk
3 years ago
one more clue- System Profiler under "USB High-Speed Bus" refers to it as "Vendor- Specific" rather than as "iSight"
mosesk
3 years ago
meant to say "reconnecting it did NOT lead to..."
mosesk
3 years ago
i took the A1212 apart. I noticed the iSight cable was disconnected from the ZIF retaining flap, but re-connecting did lead to the iSight being recognized in System Profiler or working in PhotoBooth, iChat etc. I have done all the obvious resets- PRAM, SMU, clean system install. Is the most likely suspect the camera and/or the board itself? Thanks very much for your help?
mosesk
3 years ago
what would most likely be the cause of the iSight not working? And how to repair it? Thanks

3 years ago
The videos are very helpful, but with such a complicated take-apart as the keyboard removal, it would be good to have a "put-together" as well...
Dale
3 years ago
Great video. What do you think of using a chopstick to point out items rather than your finger?
Powerbook Medic
3 years ago
@Dave - it is built onto the main logic board.
Dave
3 years ago
So where is the gaphics card on a macbook pro 17"
James
3 years ago
one last question, could it be possible that the display lid switch that tells the computer that the lid is closed is stuck? If so can that be replaced or is it part of the logic board?
James
3 years ago
Ok thanks for your help. Been looking at your guides and they are very nice.
Powerbook Medic
3 years ago
@James - get it professionally diagnosed, probably needs a new logic board which may not be worth it.
James
3 years ago
Did that and no luck. What my next option and how much do you think it will cost?
Powerbook Medic
3 years ago
@James - it sounds like a logic board problem since the external display isn't working either. You can try turning the machine off, unplugging it, taking out the battery, holding the power button for a good 10 seconds and then plugging it back in to see if that helps.
james
3 years ago
also I had the computer connected to the TV and that is also not showing anything.
James
3 years ago
When i boot the computer I here the bing at start up and keyboard lights up but i get nothing from the display. It was working yesterday and i just closed the lid to put it in sleep mode. the next day i opened the display but nothing happened. I tried to reboot but no luck in getting the display to show anything. Was going to try and take computer apart and see if reseting the cables will help. seem like the sleep mode is not letting go. any help wou;d be great.
Powerbook Medic
3 years ago
@carl - if you have opened the machine up, I would go in and reseat the cables. If you haven't opened it up, it is probably a top case issue that may need to be replaced.
carl
3 years ago
my macbook pro 17 when you touch the top case under the keyboard causes the curser to select the hole line
Powerbook Medic
3 years ago
@Lisa - you'll need to replace the fans most likely.
Lisa
3 years ago
i am hearing noises from my cpu. it sounds like a fan gone wrong. is there anyway i can remedy that?
Corey
3 years ago
Allright, got it working. What I did was put in the old cracked monitor, fired it up, and after it logged in, put that monitor to sleep. Then I swapped the monitors, and fired it back up. Upon relogin, the new monitor worked (like it had been when I did this before), and I quickly set the resolution to one of the lowest settings, which I new any monitor could handle. Then I shut it down, took out the battery, and the power cord to test, and pressed the power button to discharge any buildup. I plugged it back in, and viola! it worked like a charm!
Powerbook Medic
3 years ago
@Corey - at this point, we typically suggest sending it in for us to look at. we offer a free diagnosis and we'll get a working screen for you, and then at that point we can either just exchange the screen and send it back, or go ahead and install it completely for you for $95. You can do this using the Send-In Service link at the top.
Corey
3 years ago
To add to the frustration I can utilize the sleep method, by putting in the old cracked screen, booting up with it working, put it to sleep, swap out the screens, and the new one works perfectly. That is, until the computer is restarted, then it goes to funky again.
Corey
3 years ago
I am having an issue with the screen replacement as well. I have reset the PRAM as well. When it boots up, you see the apple logo, then when it goes into the full OS, it turns into a bunch of vertical lines. When you move on the trackpad, you can see the color change a bit, but no dice on the display. Hooking it up to my TV as an external/mirrored display, everything works perfect on the TV. Also, I can put in the old, cracked screen and it comes on and displays right every time. This is my third replacement, and I am having a hard time convincing myself my luck can be that bad. Its an Macbook Pro A1212, and the first two replacement screens I used were compatable ones, the third was an exact match LG LP171WE2(TL)(A2). I am completely baffled by this.
Powerbook Medic
4 years ago
@Vida - check your RAM first. One of the chips may be seated improperly. After that just check your connections from the magsafe to the logic board, they may be loose. After that, something may have gotten shorted out and you may want to have it professionally diagnosed.
Vida
4 years ago
I disassembled my LCD that showed lines and connected it again - now i don't see anything on the lcd. Also, keywboard doesn't light up. I see the fans active and the front dim light is on -- nothing else is working i am so bummed. What did i do wrong?
Andy
4 years ago
I appreciate these videos, but without a video for putting it back together I'm afraid to do it myself. I know, you're supposed to just reverse the instructions, but what about the tape? Are there any tricks to snapping the case back on? What pitfalls are there in the reassembly process that I should watch out for? I am not a computer tech or I wouldn't be watching these videos. Please, please add some reassembly videos.
Gary
4 years ago
Take apart was great. Put together a little harder. Might be good to do a put together also.
Jose Marino
4 years ago
Muchas Gracias por la informacion
Stein
4 years ago
Thanks for you great videos and help! I have successfully replaced the logic board. I could have used a bit of footage on how to get the board back in. Struggled more with that than anything. Still, couldn't have done it without your help!
Bill Mann
4 years ago
Thank You SO much! I bought this keyboard from your company because of this video! Just watched, followed along ,, and failed MBP is back to life again. Thanks!!
Powerbook Medic
4 years ago
@ Josh - I'd setup a replacement for the LCD first and see if that fixes your issue. Sometimes with different brands, you may have 2 screw holes that don't line up. It won't effect the machine if they are not there. When the display is put back together, the machine is extremely secure...even if there were no screws installed.
Josh
4 years ago
Yea, it looks like it turns on properly, now that I changed it back to the old cracked screen. It's bright, but streaked. kinda hard to tell; I craked it pretty good. It chimes and remains bright. Unlike the one i tried to install. I talked to your customer service team, they said it might be defective. Your thoughts? Also I noticed there are no places for the two top screws, I'm assuming it is probably just a different manufacture. Everything else lined up OK.
Powerbook Medic
4 years ago
@Josh - If your original LCD worked for the most part, I would try putting it back in and see if it turns on properly.
Powerbook Medic
4 years ago
@Stein - It is usually a good idea to reset the PRAM after doing it by holding down Apple-Option-P-R during bootup, but that is about it.
Josh
4 years ago
I just installed the LCD and when I started it back up the apple logo came up and then it went black. I rebooted it and the same thing happened the second time. Now the screen doesn't come on at all. Could something else be the problem? Not sure what the next steps are.
Stein
4 years ago
Besides physically replacing the Logic Board with a brand new one... is there anything else that needs to be done, setup or anything.
Vj Blaze
4 years ago
The spot where you are pulling the inverter cables on the left side next to the fan, what would it take to disable the ISIGHT ONLY, and not the backlight as well? There is a split to the cable, with red, black, and yellow on the top hooked into a silver connection. THEN, there is a seperate white, 2 greens, and amber colored cables going into the black connector. Which of those two would I need to pull to completely dissconnect my internal Isight from the usb bus? I plan to use an external firewire isight and the special software I use will only call up the internal one, so I want to manually disconnect it. IF this is even possible. All help appreciated.
Powerbook Medic
4 years ago
@ TonyP -It's possible your speaker cables are not routed properly and are getting pinched somewhere. I'd go back in and verify the speaker cable path.
TonyP
4 years ago
Just replaced the bottom pan case on a Mac Book Pro 17" A1151. The video was great. The difficulty I am having now is that after connecting everything and closing up the case, when I fire up the Mac the speakers "hiss". I still hear the start up sound, but there is a continual hiss from the speakers that was not there before I replaced the case. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!
Powerbook Medic
4 years ago
@Wolfram - just go in reverse, yes. you can use the same tape or purchase new orange anti-static tape from the tools section to the right.
Wolfram
4 years ago
Very awesome and easy to follow, thanks! My question is when puttin in the new hard drive, I should do the reverse of what you did right? If so, what kind of tape should i use to connect the thingy to the logic board?
Powerbook Medic
4 years ago
@John - There are two places to tighten. One is the screws attaching the display to the base of the machine which you should see in the videos. The other are the screws attaching the hinges to the bezel of the display.
Powerbook Medic
4 years ago
@Max - Generally if nothing at all shows up on the screen it is a logic board issue. If system profiler is not even detecting a display, that mostly confirms it.
John S
4 years ago
Thanks so much for these outstanding videos. I ordered my replacement keyboard from you - hope that helps offset the cost. I have a question, though: the hinge on my LCD is weak and the LCD flops closed if the Macbook is at an angle. Is there a way to tighten it? I couldn't tell from the videos. Thanks.
Max Crandale
4 years ago
Perfect tutorial. My question, I have an A1212 thas has no lcd screen video but perfect external video... No backlight either? is it because of inverter? or screen gone? In system, sytem profile i do not see any internal monitor other than my external? What is the symtons shows... I am in Turkey so i cannot send it for diagnostic? How can find where is the error part thanks.
Powerbook Medic
4 years ago
@OttO - You may want to go back in and check and make sure there aren't any temperature sensors getting pinched and the thermal paste is in good shape underneath the board.
OttO
4 years ago
Best guide i've seen yet. I wish I had come across it a week ago. I ordered a bottom case to replace a dented one for my 17' MBP. I had the IT guy at my work do take apart, everything works fine accept now my fans are always at 59000 rpm, and there's a hissing/static sound that comes from under the case near the speakers and always comes on when clicking on a music/video file. It isn't noticeable in headphones. Btw I think the music is perfect for an otherwise stressful task I may have to endure.
Powerbook Medic
4 years ago
@Stein - Make sure your fans are coming on, you may want to blow them out with some compressed air. After that you can go inside the machine and possibly reapply some thermal compound between the video chip and heatsink.
Stein
4 years ago
Amazing service to the community, guys. I have a MBP display that comes and goes. Tends to go out after running hot. However external display still works, except for this last time, now they\re both out. NVidia issue or not?
Powerbook Medic
4 years ago
@Frank - batteries can expand when they get moisture inside or some other defects. It is recommended to replace it sooner than later.
Frank
4 years ago
My battery pack is expanding why?
Wiley
4 years ago
Thank you so much for all your work.. if needed I will giving you my business for parts as a means to repay your efforts It is so hard to find simple instructions for these tasks and to find the instruction in video, well.. one can't ask for more.. Thanks guys
Powerbook Medic
4 years ago
@hans - typically that is going to be a problem with the display or the logic board. You may want to send it in for a free diagnosis.
hans volkers
4 years ago
My video is starting up more and more frequently with a disturbed color scheme, which makes the scren almost unreadable. My external monitor does not have a problem and shows the proper colors. Can you advise me? model A1212 Macbook pro.
Joe
4 years ago
Thanks for the 'Top Case & Trackpad' video my backlight was cutting in and out and this video helped me dismantle my macbook pro. Turned out to be a loose cable above the left fan.
Powerbook Medic
4 years ago
@Dedan - You'll most likely need a new superdrive. We sell them to the right in the service parts section.
Dedan
4 years ago
hi im new to this i have a macbook pro 17 in. and my disc drive wont read , play or burn cd'sor dvd's anymore how can i fix it
Powerbook Medic
4 years ago
The background was reduced in all manuals after this one. Thanks for the input.
Joe
4 years ago
The background music is way too loud. I would suggest not using it in future videos.
Powerbook Medic
4 years ago
Thank you for the suggestions. We'll be taking them into consideration for future guides.
SEAN
4 years ago
The music is a nice addition to what would normally be a boring tech guide. It could be toned down into the background a bit, so the narrator's voice is stronger. Also, more narration and specific directions would be nice. Sometimes the narrator mumbles a bit.
Dayan
4 years ago
This is great, but must we listen to that irritating music?
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