7/21/2015 Apple/Mac/OS X News, Tips and Tech Articles - xlr8yourmac.com
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Questions on Early 2011 MacBook Pro GPU 3rd party Repairs/GPU Upgrade:
(from a reader in germany.)
" Upgrading / reballing GPU on MacBook Pro early 2011
Four days ago, my MBP started having the dreaded GPU failures. (ref: Apple's Early 2011 - Early 2013 MacBook Pro GPU Repair Extension Program) I went to an Apple premium support shop to do Apple's repair eligibility test. But my MBP passed it (= won't get free motherboard replacement), because the problem wasn't severe enough at the time to be detected by the test. Meanwhile, I can hardly work on the AMD GPU and on my second monitor, because even the screensaver will cause a crash. So, like many others before me, I have to go through this all over again and again, till my computer finally fails the test and I will get a new motherboard that will probably fail with the same defect sooner or later, out of Apple's extended warranty.

While researching on the actual options to solve the problem without dealing with these humiliating tests and dubious motherboard replacement(s), I have found this website: https://people.cam.cornell.edu/~zc227/extras/early2011mbp_graphics.html. (includes notes about workaround of using integrated Intel GPU instead. Before repair program some also used GFX utility to switch GPUs (and cooling fan speed utils). Lower performance but maybe at least usable.)

The option of replacing and reballing the GPU with leaded solder seems to be the best option. And I have found a German repair shop that does it and even offers a GPU upgrade from the Radeon HD 6750M to 6770M (1GB VRAM version). Of course, this costs me money, but may save a lot of time and hassle. It seems the Radeon 6770M can even support 4K monitors.

My question is: Has anybody done a reballing and/or GPU upgrade to the Radeon 6770M on the MBP early 2011 and is the MBP still fully functioning (including Snow Leopard)?
Best regards, Wolfgang"

I remember some discussion on 3rd party repairs years ago (not just on this model) but don't recall anyone doing a GPU upgrade, although it's in the same series/family so I'd think it would be supported. (You have 1GB vram 6750M now?) The original apple forum thread on that problem is now over 870 pages long with some noting repeat failures after logic board swaps. (In some areas after 3 repairs for the same problem you get a new replacement.) Not sure if anyone posted there in the past about upgrading the GPU.

Even though you may have another failure, I'd be tempted to have Apple retest to qualify for the repair now that it's worse.

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Apple/products related News, Problems/Tips, PR:
(July 19th-20th) Apple Support/How-To/Troubleshooting Article Updates:

(Topic-based page of Tips, Troubleshooting & How-To articles for Mac/OS X/iOS Users.)

Recent Updates, Tips, DIY Upgrades and Repairs:
List of Updates, DIY Repair, Upgrade articles, Tips and more you may have missed. (Topics range from OS/software updates and troubleshooting, to hardware upgrades and repairs.)

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Previous News Archive Summary:
    July 17, 2015 News Archive
  • Thread on Hitachi 6TB NAS Edition HD won't mount after restart in Mac Pro
  • Notes/Tips on Mac Mini boot problems after running EFI Update 1.8.
  • Some report System Info Word Wrap problem in OS X 10.10.4 (updated w/replies)
  • Apple How-To/Troubleshooting Article Updates:
    - Remove unwanted adware that displays pop-up ads on your Mac
    - Mac Basics: Ports on your Mac
    - How to Reset the Lockdown folder in iTunes
    - How to Sync your iPhone, iPad, and iPod with iTunes using USB
    - How to Sync your iPhone, iPad and iPod touch with iTunes using Wi-Fi
    - How to Resolve issues between iTunes and third-party security software
    - About 'Trust This Computer' alert on iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch
    - See how much storage you've used on your iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch

For links to older news pages, see the Archives.

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