News Archive for Monday September 27, 2010     Goto Current News Page

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First Reports on Apple's V6Z S/N ATI X1900 Refund/Replace program (8800GT replacement)
Friday's news had a post regarding an apple doc on certain S/N ATI X1900 XT's w/distorted video (w/refund/replace offer). As I suspected, several readers over the weekend wrote they no longer had their problematic X1900 cards (long discarded or sold) and therefore had no record of their card S/N.
However one reader sent this report, noting he was offered a replacement card (actually an 8800GT). (But for those that had paid for a replacement previously or no longer have the card, the question of proving your original card's S/N comes up.)

"Hi Mike, I went to the local Apple store here to resolve the ATI x1900 issue and here is what happened:
They said they could not refund the purchase price of the card because I had bought it as an upgrade, not a replacement for a defective x1900xt. They said what they could do is replace the card, which was fine with me.

I asked if there was any chance that they could replace it with a newer 5770 card (which apparently works in first gen Mac Pros like mine) but they said they could only replace it with the same card. Ok, great, so now I will have a functional x1900xt in my drawer instead of a broken one.

The interesting thing is that when he tried to place the order for a replacement X1900 card it automatically substituted an Nvidia 8800gt. (emphasis mine. I wondered if they even had any Mac X1900XTs left.-Mike)
So, long story short, I will be getting an 8800gt instead of the x1900xt. I'm so glad this is happening now because my current video card is starting to crap out (a flashed Ati 4870HD) Of course the Nvidia is nowhere near as good as the 4870, but it is better than the Nvidia 7300 thats in there now. I will see how well the 8800gt does with WoW, and based on that I will decide if I need to get an Ati 5770 or not from Apple.
-Julian"

BTW - he later wrote with some concerns regarding the two different versions of the 8800GT that were sold. (The first was for EFI64/PCIe 2.0 Mac Pros, later they offered a different version for 2006/7 (EFI32/PCIe 1.0) Mac Pros) - hopefully they order/send the correct model for his EFI32 Mac Pro. (He wrote the next day that he had recd the correct card.)
I wonder what happens when/if they run out of 8800GT stock? (refund or 5770 offered?)
FYI One reader wrote concerned that he had bought his card more than 3 years ago, but I replied with a reminder that per the note at the bottom of the apple doc he should be covered (emphasis mine):

"This program covers affected ATI X1900 XT video cards three years from the original date of purchase or until January 31, 2011, whichever provides longer coverage. Apple will continue to evaluate the repair data and will provide further repair extensions if needed."

I underlined that section for emphasis - and I suspect that like the flawed Nvidia 8600M GT repair program, they may extend the period over time. (But of course that's just my guess.)

And another reader confirmation on the 8800GT replacement:

"Hey Mike, The original video card with my MacPro was the ATI Radeon X1900XT. And I had showed (pictures) of it here when I replaced the noisy fan with an AcceleroX2. (ref: www.xlr8yourmac.com/Graphics/Mac_X1900XT_Silent_Cooler.html.)
Since that upgrade to a quieter, cooler solution worked until I replaced the card with a HD 3870, I had put it in a drawer and forgot about it until you flagged the recent Apple kbase article.

Guess what? Mine isn't covered. It has the V6Z EEE code. It is from a 2006 MacPro. But even as an Apple Authorized tech, I can't get the part replaced by Apple (under a Quality Program). It shows up as Out Of Warranty. For me, it isn't a big deal as I could not follow through with replacing the card. I had removed the screws to the larger frame and discarded them (recently..now I realize their use). Because of this, the warranty is void. I would mention that to anyone else that updated/modded their original X1900XT.

Something else not mentioned in the article is that the X1900 XT is substituted with an nVidia GeForce 8800 GT series card.

Since my MacPro is now 4 years old, I'm not too concerned. But for those that didn't upgrade their card, I wonder if they can get that replacement? (see above report)
(name withheld)"

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New model AppleTV's Now Shipping
Despite some recent stories of delays, two readers (thanks Don and George) wrote they've gotten emails in the last 24 hours that their AppleTV orders have shipped. Don promised to send a review once he receives his (Due 9/30) and does some testing.
(I didn't order a new model. With all that's been going on the last few months, I'll be hanging onto my original model with 320GB hard drive upgrade for awhile.)
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