back to article Apple in another dust-up with its fans: iMacs, MacBooks lack filters, choke on grime – lawsuit

Apple was sued in the US this week over claims that design flaws in its iMac desktop and MacBook laptop computers allow dust into the machines, causing the screens, fans, and circuitry to fail. The complaint, filed Wednesday in San Jose, California, on behalf of plaintiffs Kim Ahern of Arizona, Nikolas Frenzel of Colorado, and …

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Meanwhile in la la land

They will be claiming to be the most environmentally friendly computer company in...

Perhaps its the wrong sort of dust...

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Re: Meanwhile in la la land

Yep but the Apple dust "thinner and lighter" than anything else....

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With all this focus on filth...

.. I'm sure that there's a joke about pornography in here somewhere.

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Holmes

Errr....

....Looking carefully at a laptop.....looking carefully at a server.....looking carefully at a desktop PC..... Gosh, I must be really out-of-date on my tech! I don't see a dust filter on any one of them!

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Re: Errr....

Yeah, the filters part is going to doom this lawsuit. The issue is that Apple is making it unusually difficult and expensive for customers to perform routine cleaning needed to keep the computer working. It's weird because all of this was figured out in the 60 years ago when people smoked at work. Needs airflow : cleaning access. Doesn't need airflow : gasket.

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Re: Errr....

My gaming PC has filters in the front, but only where the two 120mm fans are located. So there are plenty of gaps where the dust gets in anyways.

Though I do agree that the industry norm is to not have filters.

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Re: Errr....

> but only where the two 120mm fans are located

Well then are the fans backward? If the fans breathe through the filters, then the idea is they blow out the various gaps and vents and so dust is reduced.

However, if your box was assembled by the same morons I usually see, the fans blow out into the filters, which is a complete waste of time.

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we needed filters!

It fits but it's still not a good look for Apple customers... the narrowly-spaced stack of copper slices welded onto the end of the heatpipe is a de facto filter... A machine is a space heater and air cleaner that also happens to do lots of math for decoding pictures of cats. Some machines are more ...suicidal, than others.

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Re: Errr....

Thanks for reminding me to check the server room air filters tomorrow morning...

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Re: Errr....

First of all, most of grime going into a PC is not dust it is lint.

1. De-Linting is not filtering, it can and is normally handled by static attraction. Even if you have fine mesh on the intakes (as my desktop PCs and home server do) it holds lint mostly because of static and not mechanical filtering (at least initially, it becomes mechanical as it clogs up).

2. Your typical mesh/holed intake on a PC can stop quite a lot of lint by static alone. It is effectively a form of filter.

3. That quite clearly stops working on a nice fully grounded "cute" metal body which has no paint on top.

Back to Numer 3 - this is what an idiot tax operation victim has bought. They bought a system which has been relieved from household lint protection by design. As the time goes it will get clogged in inside by lint because it ain't sticking to the intake.

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Re: Errr....

Most PC's and laptops can be taken apart and be maintained. I have an 8 year old I7 Tosh laptop that's still rocking. A number of the laptops I've used have had panels underneath which give access to the heatsinks so that they can be brushed clear.

Regular maintenance is just part of owning a machine, like changing the oil on a car... something which the average consumer just doesn't seem to be aware of. It's as if they think that laptops, etc. are just magic boxes that sit under desks and perform their magic until the hard drive gets full and it's time to change the whole box, because the operating system is not supported any more... or some such guff. (in my neck of the woods, the PSU seems to be the most common point of early failure these days. Used to be RAM death.)

So the idiot tax is working exactly as designed... a tax on idiots ... or to be more honest, those who are uneducated in maintenance of their machines. And those who are now educated in such things, are starting to get upset because they've finally realised how Apple works. (and a few others, to be honest... some laptops do require a certain degree of disassembly for dust maintenance... those who install the screw panels are the good guys who put a bit of extra thought for the customer)

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Re: Errr....

Are the down votes on @msknight's post the count of Apple PR execs who have read it?

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Re: Errr....

To be fair it's most laptops now with non removable batteries that are an added crime. How to swap RAM or a drive if you can't power down? Gel pack batteries are no excuse, as anyone who has pried open a device to change one knows. Especially nonsense when many laptop batteries carefully locked away and as inaccessible as possible are the same black brick just screwed in.

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Re: Errr....

" I don't see a dust filter on any one of them!"

Yes, that's because through clever design those are integrated into the case. Essentially meshed surfaces are fairly decent dust filters. The idea is that they catch all the big particles while the rest will simply be blown out by the fans. I've first seen an eary concept of those in an expensive measurement device. There was a hive-like structure perhaps 2-4 cm deep just mounted on the air inlet. This structure cought all the relevant dust and kept the rest of the device virtually dust free.

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Re: Errr....

So, what happens to the big particles that they catch? Does the machine give a blow-out on start-up? Surely they don't expect these structures to continue indefinitely... and they must need a clear out as well?

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Re: Errr....

You need negative or neutral airflow to stop the dust coming in from anywhere other than the filtered fans.

As I say to my wife on this subject, two in the front, one at the back will achieve this flow and stop dirt getting in.

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Good

I say Apple needs way more lawsuits like this. They need to understand that there repercussions if they put out crap products.

Now if only the same could be done for software... *glares at Microsoft*.

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Greed or Ignorance?

"Instead, Apple tells customers that they must replace the entire screen, at a cost exceeding $600, apparently in order to increase Apple’s profits at the expense of the customer."

Let's be honest, the geniusesidiots handling the service repairs probably don't know how easy it is to remove the screen or simply don't care. They type the word "screen" into their computer and it spits back $600, that's basically it. Apple isn't paying them to think.

Of course, if we're talking third-party licensed repair services, then they need to make back what they paid Apple for the privilege of touching the holy device in the first place.

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Re: Greed or Ignorance?

Genius Bar caught ripping customer off ON CAMERA by CBC News.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o2_SZ4tfLns

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Who is in charge?

St Ives and Ms Burberry have surely lost the plot.

The big question is, will Dim Tim But Nice realise that the Chief Designer and CVO (Chief Vanity Officer) have royally fecked up on many fronts and the company is going TITSUP as a consequence?

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Re: Who is in charge?

Yes now share price is tanking...question is will they fix this...only if it drives shareholder value.

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Which is why on PCs the manufacturer disables the SMART support in the BIOS.

Don't want a return near the end of the guarantee period do they?

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Dell are a sod for that.

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Anonymous Coward

It's for your own safety

Only trained Apple Certified Technicians wearing full face and body hazmat protection should attempt to make contact with the untested and potentially detrimental dust.

Apple insists all dust related matters can be most readily resolved by updating to the latest device, or preferably the newest iPad.

Think of dust as an expiration date. Dust is a sign you need to be cleansed of more dirty money.

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Re: It's for your own safety

Only trained Apple Certified Technicians wearing full face and body hazmat protection should attempt to make contact with the untested and potentially detrimental dust customers.

FTFY...

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Re: It's for your own safety

So this is a bit like needing to change your Rolls-Royce when the ashtrays were full?

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Happy

Re: It's for your own safety

Another reason for not smoking, then

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Re: It's for your own safety

So this is a bit like needing to change your Rolls-Royce when the ashtrays were full?

You mean to say you don't?

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Re: It's for your own safety

Apple insists all dust related matters can be most readily resolved

There is no dust. The Magisterium says so.

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Was the real reason for them declaring they'd have dividends awhile back simply anticipation of, and making it harder, to short their stock?

It's been quite a long time since any real innovation, and things like this story keep going on and on - this outfit gets you coming and going and revels in the highest margins in the biz.

Which is insulting enough that I managed to avoid them so far...but it really does look like they might be getting ready to lose it in a way that is publicly recognized - and financially actionable.

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Anonymous Coward

re: Shorting Apple stock

APPL is still the most heavily shorted stock on the NYSE.

Like here, there are loads of people who hate everything to do with Apple. The only difference is that many of them make a pretty decent living betting on APPL falling on a given day.

As there are loads of (cough, cough) supposedly independant analists (with emphasis IMHO on the first four letters) crawling over the company, its employees and suppliers and then making up headline stories about the company being in financial meltdown due to a 1% drop in order for component X from company Y while ignoring that Apple has increased orders from Company Z, there is ample factoids for the shorters to bet on and cause the whole market to rise and fall.

This is a fact of life for Apple and Tesla and a few other companies.

Yet there are the likes of MS, Amazon and Google who seem to escape this manipulation. Amazon with its pretty bad P/E ratio is a risk as well.

I've moved out of stocks and into cash and bonds as I happen to think that there is a huge market correction about to hit most of the world's stock markets. APPL and the rest are horribly overvalued.

That said, I am not a financial advisor and have no direct investment in any of the companies mentioned.

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Re: re: Shorting Apple stock

Apple is (or was for many months when it kept rising, not sure if it is still is now that it has already fallen 25%) the most heavily shorted stock in dollar terms, which isn't surprising as it also has (or had, until Microsoft closed higher today) the largest market cap.

It is nowhere near the most heavily shorted stock in terms of percentage of float, which is how analysts measure "the most heavily shorted stock".

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Is that you, Flavio?

If not, then I have a ’Net.acquaintance who has been saying the exact same thing for a while now.

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Ok... Ok...

I'm as much of a (Cr)Apple fanboi as the next cat over, sans the spining rust, then known an an iPod. That was something far FAR to good for them, and as such eventlualy lead to their downfall as a computer manufacture.

But, WHY are we only targeting Apple here? Surly other Laptop OEMs are just as guilty of not including a bit of Fabric to protect the fan from dust, and as such force the machine to run hotter, and slower, due to having such a filter, that would never get replaced anyway.

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Anonymous Coward

BullMerde

Ex Mac Technician here....

1. Filters are not the answer: Filters get blocked, like fans, and would result in the machines over heating

2. There's normally 3 fans in an iMac: Power supply, HDD and CPU areas. There's normally no air gap between the display and outer screen, so highly unlikely this would be the cause. If you've ever repaired an iMac screen, you'll know how difficult it is to keep it dust free. Having an air gap would encourage dust...

3. I've pulled apart some disgusting machines: Most of those with display staining were due to smokers. Most of those with clogged fans on laptops used them on beds

4. Even with today's unrepairable laptops, it doesn't take much to take the back off and give the fans a quick blast with a can of compressed air.

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Re: BullMerde

Same for me, an ex Genius. The interior cleanliness of the machines I repaired entirely depended on the environment they had been used in. The range was wide and we could and did refuse service on more than one machine including one that had some insects living inside it.

As for removing the glass to clean it - 2012+ iMacs have the glass bonded to the LCD to allow the machines to be thinner, so the whole assembly needs to be replaced.

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Re: BullMerde

If the glass is bonded to the LCD, how does the dust get in?

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Re: BullMerde

"it doesn't take much to take the back off and give the fans a quick blast with a can of compressed air"

We bought a 10cfm compressor because air cans just don't cut it - cleaning out PC's/Laptops/Mac's etc is now much more fun!

Apart from dodging the resulting dust cloud!!!

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Re: BullMerde

Bonded != hermetically sealed. Dust apparently still gets in, you just can't remove the glass to clean it.

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Re: BullMerde

2. [...] There's normally no air gap between the display and outer screen, so highly unlikely this would be the cause.

Yet it's a known problem (read the thread to the end) and here is the solution (replace the display). At least with the pre-2012 iMacs you could pull the outer pane off with suckers and give both the outer pane and the display a clean, 2012+ iMac screens can't be cleaned.

4. Even with today's unrepairable laptops, it doesn't take much to take the back off and give the fans a quick blast with a can of compressed air.

Look at the video above, Louis Rossmann needed an ultrasonic cleaner to bring a MacBook board back to life. If you reply saying "yeah but corrosion", watch again - he repaired the corrosion, plugged it in at 2:56 and it was still dead, put it in the cleaner, then afterwards it powered up.

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Re: BullMerde

... 2012+ iMacs have the glass bonded to the LCD to allow the machines to be thinner ...

So, once again, the quality of the product is sacrificed on the altar of "thin".

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Re: BullMerde

It may be bonded on, but replacing the entire assembly is complete tosh. The bonding strips just need to be replaced, which takes an "amateur" like myself doing it for the first (and preferably only) time no more than half an hour utilising a plastic spudger, a microfibre cloth and a bottle of rubbing alcohol. End cost is less than a tenner in consumables and tools.

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Don't forget you get 6 YEARS legal warranty, not 1 or 2. (5 Years in Scotland)*

See Apple's own pages here: https://www.apple.com/uk/legal/statutory-warranty/ where the 6 Years is clearly stated.

* in Scotland only 5 Years because we wouldn't keep any Apple crap longer than that anyway.

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Mac Pro "Dustbin"

My Mac Pro is appropriately/unofficially named "trashcan style", maybe for UK they should name it "dustbin".

I vacuumed it out and used compressed air on the innards last week for the first time after 4 years of near 24/7 operation. There are no filters, as such the electronics, vents and surfaces have been performing a decent air filter role for 4 years so the satisfying amount of cr*p that I cleaned out of it was impressive.

Unlike the all-in-one Macs, the current Mac Pro is really easy to get the case off and maintain :) The fan runs slower since the maintenance and I can see average component temperatures are lower using a monitoring utility.

Must do this more regularly...

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Paris Hilton

Instead, Apple tells customers that they must replace the entire screen, at a cost exceeding $600, apparently in order to increase Apple’s profits at the expense of the customer

...

...And?

I agree that's probably more or less what they do (with the caveat that maybe sometimes the cheap fix would not work), but then what? They are treating customers like cash cows? Yeah, they are. You think it's scummy? Be my guest. But suing a company for doing that feels daft. Have they considered suing luxury brands for selling items at ten times the cost of production?

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Plenty of horrible Apple repair policies

I found this guy on YouTube. Long but worth a look, seems he's been in long struggle with Apple over rights to repair.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MyKp7fiXkws

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Filters?

Long, long ago.I was involved in the support of a new line of Unix machines.

They all came with nice air filters.

Not for long once it was realised we were having more failures from blocked air filters than from internal dust and fluff.

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Re: Filters?

That wasn't on the power supplies of a rather fetching solar related beast was it? Data centres, or machine rooms as I prefer to call them, are not as clean as you might expect.

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