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My MacBook Pro was displaying normally until recently. Now when I boot it up it displays different colors, sometimes white on the screen, but when I hook it up to a TV screen it displays normally.

I need help as to what could be causing this problem and how to fix it?

So far I've tried resetting NVRAM and reseating the RAM, but this didn't help. I also haven't upgraded any software nor added any new items of hardware, so this change in behaviour cannot be attributed to any known actions on my behalf.

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  • Since this is a recent change, can you recall if it coincides with anything else? For example, an OS or software upgrade or any new items of hardware? Also, can you clarify what, if anything, you've already tried? – Monomeeth Dec 10 '18 at 11:55
  • Nope, i haven’t upgrade the OS nor the hardware. I have tried NVRAM, PRAM reset and even try to reseat the RAM all to no avail. This thing is really driving me wired🙆‍♀️. – UpIn Dec 10 '18 at 12:05
  • Could be defective RAM. Can you try booting with only 1 RAM at a time? (Remove one, boot, check for the issue, if it persists remove the RAM and put the other one back in). Might only be one defective module. – Kevin Grabher Dec 10 '18 at 13:27
  • The key here is that when you hook it up to an external display it is fine. If the external display is fine then the internal display is likely at fault. And those pictures look like a defective display or possibly a defective display cable inside the Mac. – Steve Chambers Dec 10 '18 at 13:37
  • Do you have a MBP with discrete or integrated graphics? – Allan Dec 10 '18 at 13:39
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This could be one of two things:

  • a bad LCD
  • a failure of a logic board component, possibly the video mux chip.

A bad LCD is quite easy to diagnose; simply plug that LCD into a known working MacBook. If it continues to fail, it's the LCD.

Alternatively, you can plug in a known working LCD into your Mac and if it continues to fail, you've narrowed it down to your logic board.

If it so happens that your LCD tests good, the likely cause is the circuitry that sends display signals to the LCD itself.

  • Cable
  • Video Mux chip
  • related circuitry (capacitors, resistors, traces, connectors, etc.)

What's a video mux? It's a fancy switch. It takes multiple inputs, in this case video, and sends them to the appropriate output; the internal LCD and/or external TV/monitor.

That chip could be faulty given that it's only sending video to one display while sending garbage to another.

Bottom line: Take it in for service.

Swapping out LCD's is not too difficult, but you have to have either a spare LCD or a spare Mac with the same display connector. I don't imagine you have spare Mac parts just casually laying around.

Doing a board level diagnostic isn't something you'll be able to do without the proper tools.

It can be fixed, but it needs to be done by a pro.

  • I've had a very similar issue a while back, also on a 2010 MB Pro, same display issue, weird colours etc. Took it in for service, it turned out to be the LCD, which had to be replaced... – nwinkler Dec 10 '18 at 15:23
  • Thanks everybody for your contribution. When i got home yesterday i had to remove the mbp back cover and try to twist the display cable for sometimes and when i powered it on the screen display normal. But the way the display cable was packed and held tightly i never thought of it been faulty. – UpIn Dec 11 '18 at 6:58
  • I'm pleased you were able to fix it and it turned out to be a hardware issue. – Allan Dec 11 '18 at 11:52

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