Remember that MacMini I recently brought? Well, unfortunately it turned out that the optical drive was faulty as I found a number of CDs and DVD (which worked fine on other computers) would have serious read errors. :-(

So I contacted the Apple store in Wellington (Magnum Mac) about repairing it under warranty. However, I was not very impressed with their response which was basically “Please call Apple’s support desk to get free help”. I emailed back saying that I couldn’t see how calling a helpdesk would help me fix what was an obvious hardware fault, and received no response to that.

They also told me that if it was a hardware fault, the unit would sit “in the queue for a few days” before they diagnose the problem and order the part, which will take another few days. Naturally I like to use my computer, not leave it sitting in a repair shop for a week or two, so I was rather annoyed.

Then, talking to a friend, I found that Apple hardware can be repaired under warranty by any authorized apple service provider – and he recommended Toucan Computers.

I got them to repair the unit, and had far better service – they ordered in the part and I dropped off my Mac in the morning, to pick up in the afternoon – nice and easy! :-)

So that was the end of the story right…? Well, no – when the tech replaced the drive, he noticed that the cable for the temperature sensor was frayed! I certainly don’t expect a brand new apple computer to have a faulty optical drive and frayed internal cables!

So I also had to wait for a replacement sensor cable to get shipped out an installed – it’s lucky that it was found now, rather than when it’s out of warranty – having the sensor cable fail and the unit overheating itself when it’s not in warranty wouldn’t be fun.

I wonder if apple is having quality control issues… I noticed that all their stuff (yes, even the $4000-$5000 Macbook Pro) is manufactured over in China these days, and it’s possible that the factories assembling them are cutting corners to reduce costs (& therefore maximize profits)

A friend of mine had his Macbook Pro’s optical drive fail – it developed a nasty habit of not ejecting DVDs, and there was the widespread issue of the discolored plastic on the Macbooks recently too… for the premium price of the apple hardware, you would expect a very high quality system.

But, when it’s all working, I have to say I love the Apple hardware. I guess I’m a sucker for a pretty computer… ;-)

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