Mac screen artifacts causing a headache
February 1, 2009 2:49 PM   Subscribe

I'm getting some weird artifacts/corruptions appearing on my macbookpro screen. Any explanations?

I've tried googling this, but as my description of what's happening is quite vague I haven't had any success...

It's been happening for a while. Here are two screenshots I took of different artifacts that are happening. 1 2

Generally the artifacting occurs within a specific window, although sometimes it occurs across windows.

I have an external monitor plugged in and it occurs on both my laptop screen and the external monitor.

I thought maybe it was due to how long I leave my computer on - it's often a week or two between reboots, but it's happening now and my uptime is less than 2 days...

It seems to start on video windows (quicktime) or tetris (Quinn) the most, but that may be due to those being my most common activities...

It doesn't happen constantly, but will come and go. At the moment it seems to be appearing for a few seconds and then going again, but sometimes it won't go unless I close a windows or somehow force a screen refresh. (I was typing this the screen became obscured by a large yellow block)

Any suggestions of how I can prevent it without the pain of a reboot/trip to an apple store?
posted by tanc to Computers & Internet (7 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
What model is it? The Penryn Macbook Pros have had special warranty extentions on the nvidia 8600 GT graphics cards. I took screen shots of the scrolling/resizing corruptions to the Apple store and they replaced the logic board.
posted by bonobothegreat at 3:04 PM on February 1, 2009

Response by poster: it's the late 2006 model (first ones which were core 2 duo I think...) 2.16 ghz
posted by tanc at 3:13 PM on February 1, 2009

Best answer: Your video card is dieing. It may have overheated at some point, and when things start heating up bad stuff starts happening. Short fixes include restarting and making sure your computer is properly cooled with a cooling pad or something. There is no long term besides replacing the card itself, it will only get worse.
posted by sophist at 3:21 PM on February 1, 2009

You can see my previous post on a similar issue here.
posted by sophist at 3:32 PM on February 1, 2009

Best answer: Yeah, it's the video card. This happened to my mom's mac and she had to get the video card replaced.
posted by LunaticFringe at 4:45 PM on February 1, 2009

Response by poster: Thanks

Guess I'll have to get it checked out.

Any ideas of likely life before final decease or does it depend on how much heat it gets?
posted by tanc at 10:06 AM on February 2, 2009

Dunno if you'll check this but my mom's did wonkey things for about year before totally dying. It was heat related and finally died after my sister's bf played WoW on it for 8 hours straight. Turns out macs don't handle heat well. This is an understatement
posted by LunaticFringe at 12:02 PM on February 2, 2009

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