Complaints regarding Apple’s new iMacs have been piling up since the new models debuted last month. Alongside angry Apple Discussions posts saying that new iMacs arrived broken, users of the new Apple Magic Mouse also expressed deep dissatisfaction with the peripheral’s functionality. Just when we thought things couldn’t get worse for Apple with its new products, customers also began reporting flickering issues with the new iMacs.
The new 21.5-inch and 27-inch iMacs feature a fresh edge-to-edge glass design and a seamless all aluminum enclosure. Touted as the fastest ever with Intel Core 2 Duo processors starting at 3.06 GHz, and Core i5 and i7 quad-core processors for up to twice the performance, these iMacs now ship with a wireless keyboard and the new wireless Magic Mouse.
If the buyer has been lucky enough to have their iMac shipped in good condition, there is still a chance the computer will not function properly. Apple Discussions user Jan has just one such example, saying that "Screen distortion/flicker somewhere random in the screen (feels like it is more in the lower part) that looks like a horizontal bar of about 2-3inches just popping in and out of the screen. Screen will go completely black for a second and then come back on. Sometimes 2-3 times in a row." The Apple customer shockingly added that, "in the course of writing this post my screen has flickered 13 times and has gone black 2 times."
Still, users are reporting that Apple is offering its best support, replacing malfunctioning computers within 14-days of purchase. One Australian user, however, has reportedly been charged US$70 for not being close enough to an Apple store, according to Neowin. Some decided to post videos online showing how and when the flickering occurs.
Are you the buyer of a new iMac model? Have you experienced any issues with your computer?
I'm the owner of a brand new 21.5" iMac and a 27" iMac, the latter of which shipped in November. The 27" iMac runs fine, not a hint of trouble. The 27" DOES have a bit of screen flicker, intermittently. It occurs in the lower part of the screen; other symptoms I have seen included the one-inch wide band of blackness appear briefly once or twice, the whole screen wiggle briefly, and the screen go entirely black for an instant accompanied by a "click" sound from within.
Apple Tech Support knows about my screen's symptoms, and helped me through the hardware disk test that came on the original iMac Mac OS X Install DVD (install the DVD and press D on restart). No problems found. Last resort they suggest: Archive & reinstall the system, which I haven't done yet.
The new iMacs are new, so it's a given that there will be problems with the early models. Apple will get the whole thing sorted out, and I'll enjoy a trouble-free iMac soon enough.
". . . replacing malfunctioning computers within 14-days of purchase."
That's simply not true. I was promised a replacement within 14 days, but Apple has postponed the ship-date twice without even notifying me. By their current projections, I will finally receive my computer 2 months after I ordered it.
Unless they delay it again.
I think it's clear that the problems with the product are much more severe and widespread than any of the media are reporting yet.
I am also a buyer of an iMac 27" i5. I was just fetched again by TNT and I am awaiting to get my replacement iMac delivered next week (hopefully). Reason for exchange was the same flickering issue as mentioned in the article: flickering, black-outs and even sometimes the whole desktop became disarranged by everything (incl. the menu bar) being offset by ca. 5-10 cm from the top.
Apple care was willing to exchange this iMac after short discussion but stated that they were not aware of this problem - believe it or not.
Comment #4 by: David Gellman on 06 Dec 2009, 14:51 UTC
We are on our second 27 inch iMac quad core going on three! We bought the first unit in mid November, within a few days the screen would go black for a second or two at random intervals. Exchanged that machine at our local Apple store, and the replacement's screen began flickering within a day! Apple sent a technician out to replace the display, and he damaged the Bluetooth hardware in the process. Today we are returning machine number two, hoping that the third one will be trouble free. Apple support and store personnel have been very friendly and helpful throughout this process.
Comment #5 by: Steven Keating on 14 Dec 2009, 20:27 UTC
I just went to my conputer this morning after sleeping it last night and my 3 week old iMac i7 has just got a black screen. I try to start up several times and nothing. It makes all the noise but nothing, I cant even see the computer on my network?
Comment #7.1 by: jim on 20 Feb 2010, 09:53 GMT
same here i have had mine 2 days and the same fault flicker screen and screen not waking up although functions like volume are working as you can hear them. spent 2 1/2 hours on phone to apple who after going through every thing gets me to reinstall from set up disk, which still not cured it so i not a happy bunny with this change over and if it happens today its going back to shop and ill go get a pc...
Comment #7.2 by: tuxybaby on 17 Aug 2011, 10:50 GMT
same thing with my 21.5 imac the thing is running but the screen is black.
I have had to return my new 21 inch imac 3 times already with screen problems and my new one has exactly the same problem!! The screen starts off with shadows in top left hand corner as you look at screen which then start to spread, has anyone else been getting this problem?
Comment #8.1 by: JKVB on 03 Apr 2010, 23:50 GMT
We have the same problem with our 21" imac. It looks like it is growing mold in the top left corner. We took it in for repair and they asked if we smoked or didn't use a surge protector. They replaced the monitor and the power supply and it worked fine for three weeks -- then the same fuzzy mold began spreading from the upper left corner. Then the monitor just blacked out and would not even turn on. We took it in again and they replaced the monitor and the logic board and the power supply. I hope that we don't have to go in for a third time but I don't get the feeling that the "Apple Genius" know what the problem is. We bought this computer in December and it has been in repair for 1/2 of the time since we got it. I think that Apple is making lemons.
Comment #8.2 by: iMaco on 23 Oct 2010, 13:24 GMT
Bought an iMac 21.5 i3 3.2Ghz 1TB last August 29, 2010. Got the same problem. dark smudges at the top and right side. I brought it back to the store, then they replaced the LCD. They say its a temperature problem that's why the lcd easily gets burn. Got a new LCD now. I will check it again if this problem reoccur.
I have a 21.5 inch iMac, and have not experience any problems so far...
Comment #9.1 by: SwiftyKnows on 31 Jan 2011, 23:47 GMT
I have assisted 2 clients with iMac 21.5 and imac 27 screen problems. After lots of discussion, emails with photos and a movie of the 27 flickering, we finally got it replaced...it was brand new and had bad screen when first turned on. The 21.5 has had a slight wrinkle in the LCD in the lower left corner, we let that slide.....eventually the Mold started to appear on the upper left side, going about 5 inches down and 10 inches across the LCD. The computer is in a ultra clean Dr.'s home, A/C, no smoke, plugged into APS UPS. When I called Apple they told us the imac was just barely Out of warranty and they would not cover it, so we took to Apple shop and want to fix it with warranty protection from American express charge card we bought it with. The store is having trouble with diagnosis, not sure what the outcome will be....Amex will only pay for amount up to cost of a new iMac.....me thinks a Motherboard and LCD will exceed the cost of a new imac 21.5.....crossing fingers