pssssst! brainfag is retired! i'm now at


Second busted MacBook Pro gives artist the shits

posted in Home Jabber on May 28, 2006

I apologize for the tech-heavy postings as of late, but after dumping the biggest chunk of cash on any material item in my life (including the five cars I've owned), I have had nothing but problems! I should have stuck with my cheapass, buy-used-and-fix credo.

I just got back from the "Genius Bar" (how could I not put that in quotes? I notice just about everybody does this, and I can just see them wincing as they type it) at the downtown Apple Store (what a madhouse!) where I set up repair for my SECOND busted refurb MacBook Pro. My first MacBook had three disfunctional keys, and the second (that was replaced in a timely manner, I must admit) developed a bum Superdrive after one day of light use. UGH! UGH! UGH!

Thankfully, though, I'm able to work without the DVD drive until the replacement comes in, and should only be computer-less for a day while they swap it out. I have a lot catching up to do after 10+ days being out of commission.

I have to say, after playing with one of the MacBooks in the Apple store, I was seriously tempted to just return this POS and trade down to their low end model. I'd probably do it in a heartbeat if it came in black, because the specs are frighteningly close for $500 less (these puppies are FAST for a grand -- they're are gonna sell like hotcakes). Same speed processor and hard drive as my Refurbished 1.8ghz Pro, but smaller (& glossy) screen, integrated video card, and no ExpressCard port (wtf am I going to use that for?) and a CD/RW drive (fine for my needs).

Last night I found it amusing that I was able to watch a DVD by streaming it from my upstairs Ubuntu Linux box (running on a $40 Goodwill PC) via VLC down to my $1600 DVD-less MacBook. And while I was Powerbook G4- and MacBook-less, I was able to explore the interweb and email on my 10-year-old, $30-craigslist-find Powerbook 3400C, a surprisingly spry machine for it's age.

Adding to the bad news, the stress from having my computer kick the bucket just as I decide to start taking on a lot of jobs to, uh, get out of the red from the extensive break while drawing BFX, has ignited a flare-up of my Ulcerative Colitis. Not. Fun. No, not fun at all. I immediately went to the minimal version of the diet I've been on, which consists of homemade yogurt and dry-curd cottage cheese (bleck!), apple cider, gelatin (bleck!), simple chicken soup, beef patties (bleck!) and scrambled eggs. Mix and match those tasty meals for two days, and I'm so ready for a slice of apple pie. So I made a pie. Which exacerbated my budding flare-up (there's a phrase), and then the Superdrive died, and -- UGH. UGH. UGH. Though I have to admit, my refound fascination with copious red wine, coffee and cannabis didn't help my chances at staying healthy.

As I love to say: I don't call it Brainfag for nothin!

BRAIN-FAG on sign

Note "BRAIN-FAG" on the sign -- sent via Scott Larkin who I assume found it on Flickr by searching for brainfag

3 comments on this entry

Oh Nate, get the MacBook. It's pure heaven - even in white!

kandace 5/28/06

Hey Kandace -- Man, this whole thing has been such so frustrating and stressful. Last night Soon Bok and I watched the new Batman on my MacBook Pro via VLC off the hard drive, and the effing battery RAN OUT before the end of the (granted, 2+hr) movie! It's almost as bad as my ancient TiBook with an ancient, nearly-dead battery! That's just pitiful.

My new plan: I bought a $200 logic board replacement on eBay for my 15" TiBook (such a great computer, even if the paint is rotted to high hell) and I'm going to return my MacBook Pro. Then, HOPEFULLY I'll be able to fix my TiBook, and I'll wait out the next revision of the MacBook lowend model.

I agree -- they're amazing machines for just over a grand.. What's the battery life? Heat issues? Inverter whine? (All terrible on my MBP btw.)

Nate 5/28/06

You're not the only one. I'm learning that Refurbished Apple products are a death trap. My MacBook Pro is going back to apple for the 2nd this month. I've only had it since May, and the cheap bastards won't replace that lemon. I love MacOSX but I know trash when I see it. I'm wondering if my 10" Sony Vaio was really so bad. :(

Matt Peters 8/23/06

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