Apple's MagSafe Adapters Still Fraying, Melting, Sucking

Apple’s perpetually melting and fraying MagSafe adapters—apparently these things are made out of Styrofoam and rice paper—continue to cause trouble. Christine, call Apple and explain your problem, and see if they’ll replace it for free.

Hey Consumerist,
 
I’ve been using Apple products for years. I’ve always been satisfied with their customer service and exceptional products. Naturally, I was upset when I noticed the MagSafe power adapter on my Intel Core Duo Macbook (ca. 2006) was fraying by the magnetic port, rendering it mostly useless (or at least, useless if I didn’t want to set my house on fire charging my Macbook with exposed wires).

Cursing my luck, I tried to reconcile making myself buy a new charger when it was just this small part of the product that was faulty and wondered how this could have happened after extremely meticulous care of my notebook (to the extent that I can count on my hands how many times it’s left the house). I went to Apple’s online store to check the price ($79) only to discover that there appears to be literally hundreds of complaints from people claiming to have used their adapters for even shorter periods of time, or at least very carefully, before being forced to replace them, and demanding that Apple address the issue of its poorly fortified MagSafe ports.
 
Forcing that many people who have already invested a large amount into a reliable product to buy replacement parts so soon seems like an easily resolved situation that would save Apple a lot of headaches in the future and, more importantly, goes against their image as a company that sells sturdy, easily managed products.
 
Please help! I’ve resigned myself to the fact that I have to spend that money so I can actually use my notebook but would sleep sounder knowing that the money was going toward something that would last me longer than a Dell charger would. I certainly feel like I’ve paid for that privilege.

Here are some of the many angry reviews from the Apple website:

Right now I am typing this trying not to move my computer too much so the 2 steel wool thin wires that are still attached will charge my computer. I am in love with this computer… with power. I smell melting plastic too.
 
The Magsafe adapter on my MacBook Pro, unlike the one on my deep fat frier, has an extremely limited life span. The one on my frier has a reinforced neck where the wire meets the adapter.
 
the adapter never laaves the house…..however, base connecting point of the AC adapter’s nifty magnetic head just started to smell of melted rubber; now it is looking melted and i can see the wires inside!

Apple, perhaps it’s time you look at how other power cables are made and follow those examples! See, they’re not supposed to melt or fray.
 
[Apologies to Trai_Dep for the second anti-Apple post in a week.]
 
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Comments

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  1. AMetamorphosis says:

    Can’t wait to see the rabid Apple fan boys rationalizations for this …

    I always find them so amusing

  2. pianos101 says:

    I’m an apple “fanboy” and i had my magsafe replaced already because it started to fray… what’s your point, AMetamorphosis?

  3. The Big O says:

    Mine broke too, and I HATE THEM FOR IT! J/K

    Bah, it sucks… crappy manufacturing.

    Still dig the laptop though. I just wish I could get a 3rd party power cord and battery.

    I’m all about the third parties.

  4. Falconfire says:

    @AMetamorphosis: There is no rationalization. I love Apple but even Im getting pissed off at what could be a simple 5 cents fix of re-enforcing the GOD DAMN MAGNET.

    I have replaced it twice, once out of pocket for my spare connector. And once through Applecare for my normal one.

  5. The Big O says:

    Oooh, oooh, my 360 got the RRoD too.

    So I’ve had MS and Apple both take dumps on me. Oh wait, MS paid me back after they extended their warranty.

    Still waiting on the check for 80 some odd bucks from Apple.

  6. Chairman-Meow says:

    The Day Job’s cable melts his office desk is the day they will be fixed.

  7. ptkdude says:

    Call AppleCare. They will go through the whole thing about your laptop being out of warranty. Just tell them from the start that there’s a problem with your MagSafe adapter.

    When mine frayed and started to smoke they immediately replaced it. I was heading out of town the next day, so they had me go to my local Apple store for a replacement.

    Be prepared: they’re going to ask you a zillion weird questions!

  8. xgenius says:

    Apple has had badly designed power adapters since the yo-yo model and the Powerbook G3. Many end up fraying and sparking under normal everyday use. Sadly most Apple Store employees will try and blame the customer and call it abuse when attempting a warranty replacement.

  9. e10 says:

    Any mac owner who doesn’t also pick up the Applecare is really missing out. Having had to replace my magsafe cord was annoying and I was afraid that I was about to fry the computer but having had applecare they quickly swapped out the faulty one at the store. No hassle, no fuss. I’m sure it will fail again and at that point I will go back to the store for another one. Not such a big deal.

  10. snazz says:

    i would also recommend going to an apple specialist, rather than an apple store for warranty swaps of power adapters. those places usually have a little more flexibility with what they can/will accept.

  11. nequam says:

    @AMetamorphosis: Can’t wait to see the rabid Apple haters argue that a faulty power adapter tarnishes the entire platform.

    I always find them so amusing.

    Seriously, though, there’s no excuse for this obvious problem. Apple has a history of wilfull ignorance about these sorts of things. I hope my magsafe isn’t a time bomb.

  12. mayrc87 says:

    I have had my macbook for a year and the MagSafe adapter is already gone. The brick part that goes on the macbook has an exposed cable. I also have a dell laptop that I purchase in 2005 and the power cable is in pristine condition. I love Apple products, but have to pay $79 every year for a power cord is not cool. Apple needs to step up.

  13. AMetamorphosis says:

    @nequam:

    Not an Apple hater … but amused by how many Apple Fans have already felt compelled to respond … lol

    ( My other half is an Apple Fan boy & we are a PC / Apple household )

  14. timmus says:

    I rarely use a Mac but my wife does, and she is constantly frustrated with power adapters breaking on her. With that and the inflated cost of Macware I have a feeling she’s going to be migrating to Linux soon.

  15. CaptainSemantics says:

    @e10: I second the Applecare advice. My iBook was cursed with a faulty logic board, or something along those lines. I just figured the microscopic hamster turning the wheels inside had died. They took my computer, shipped it off, and within a week, I had a new computer, with practically no questions asked. Every new computer I get from Apple will also have the 3-year Applecare with it.

  16. wesa says:

    If people didn’t treat the power cables so poorly, they wouldn’t fray. Mine shows no sign of fraying or being damaged. When you treat expensive products well, they will last you.

  17. dailyrorschach says:

    @wesa: Agreed, I’ve had my macbook and its original charger for almost two years now, I bought them in May of 2006 when they came out, and have had no problems.

    I think this is probably being caused by people wrapping up their chargers and leaving them in that wound and spooled position to long. I hardly ever wind it up, and if I do its not for more than a few hours. Same thing happens with video game controllers.

  18. zentec says:

    Apple made a horrible mistake in their advertising showing the magsafe connector “popping” out. That’s the worse way to remove it because it puts all the force on the wire and removes the connector in the direction of the strongest lines of magnetic force. It’s one thing if happens once in order to prevent the dog from pulling the computer off the table, but I don’t think that’s how it was designed for removal after each and every charge cycle.

    I think you’re supposed to lift up on the plastic body of the connector and peel it up to remove the magsafe. Although, that doesn’t change the fact that the connectors are poorly constructed in terms of strain relief, it should help in stretching the life of the connector.

    Magsafe is a brilliant idea, just not quite there yet.

    As far as the fanbois and anti-fanbois; put a lid on it. It’s a computer, that’s all it is.

  19. @wesa: “…wondered how this could have happened after extremely meticulous care of my notebook (to the extent that I can count on my hands how many times it’s left the house).”

    Kids, Reading is Fundamental!

  20. youbastid says:

    @dailyrorschach: If spooling the wire up damages the cable, then they shouldn’t provide a snap-out spool, and warn people that leaving it spooled causes damage. Not everyone is an electrician and understands that this causes harm, especially when pretty much every computer AC adapter (including my 3rd party apple charger) can be wound around the brick just fine. The reason that this causes problems isn’t because people are ignorant, it’s because Apple is using cheap materials.

    @wesa: And products such as this shouldn’t need to be treated so delicately…unless, of course, they’re made very cheaply.

  21. AMetamorphosis says:

    @zentec:

    The in-depth commets on how to properly use an Apple products support my initial comment.

    And you’re right.
    As I tell my other half daily,

    ” Honey, its just a computer. “

  22. davere says:

    My macbook adapter had a short/melted where the cable meets the transformer thingy. I drove to the Apple Store, showed it to one of the “geniuses” and they gave me a new one on the spot.

    Couldn’t she do the same?

  23. angrychicken says:

    I’ve loved all of my Apple products (well, except for that iBook that needed three new logic boards) but I will never understand why they’re unable to construct a sturdy, solid, well put together power adapter. Or at least one that doesn’t try to ignite my house or leave me with burn marks.

    On the plus side I’ve never had a problem with returning them, as I’ve always fallen within the year warranty.

  24. @AMetamorphosis: Dude, not to put too fine a point on it, but I think you may have issues. Flamebaiting Mac fanboys, then going on and on about your wife being an Apple fanboy?

  25. mbbilder says:

    Mine has fried twice. Both times, it was replaced without question at an Apple store.

  26. ColleenS says:

    Mine fried once. I took it to the Apple Store and they replaced it within 5 minutes, no questions asked.

  27. zimzombie says:

    Seriously, try to get it replaced for free before complaining. Apple is great about replacing: this happened to me and I had a new magsafe through the mail in 2 business days, then just had to send mine back with the prepaid box.

  28. myasir says:

    @e10:
    applecare for a new macbook pro is $350. You could go out and get 4 new magsafe adapters for that price.

  29. LatherRinseRepeat says:

    The magsafe is a great idea, but poorly implemented. I have to wonder if it’s Apple’s mantra to sacrifice functionality for the sake of design.

  30. aybara says:

    I have 3 MacBooks with the MagSafe connectors.

    I also have a two-year old who will tear around the house. On occasion she will tag a MagSafe cord and yank it from the computer.

    None of mine have had a single problem. Two of them are originals from when the new adapters launched. One is only 6 months old. Just as good as new.

  31. Hanke says:

    @youbastid: I had the same issue with my Dell adapter, where the DC wire meets the transformer. The transformer is designed like a wire spool, and even has a strap built-in to secure the cables. But while the AC connector is 90 degrees and wraps easily, the DC out on the adapter is straight-out. It frays right at the bend, and I need to transport my laptop constantly.

  32. mgy says:

    The only issues I’ve ever had with Magsafes (have 2 MBPs myself and work with 3 different ones at work) is that the little magnetic pins that “catch” when you plug in the adapter sometimes get stuck inside the adapter itself.

    It’s really disconcerting to read about this sort of stuff though :(

  33. Dresarius says:

    I had two power cables fray on me, and two batteries bloat up. Both times I just walked into my local mac store (not even an official ‘brand’ apple retailer) and handed them my cable/battery and said “fix it” and walked out with a new one, about five minutes later free of charge.

    I mean, I never had any problems with my powerbook that I owned for like 5 years, and I’ve had so many issues with my Macbook Pro that I had it replaced. . . But still, as problems go this one is a pretty straightforward fix.

  34. SpaceCat85 says:

    I haven’t had one actually fry on me, but I do have to agree that the thinner MagSafe cord on the power adapter sucks. Instead of using something durable, they used a thin, soft wire similar to the ones they use on their mice and now their keyboards. I’ve already had to buy a new adapter for my MacBook (not cheap) because the spot where it connects to the AC adapter became crimped. By comparison, I have Logitech mice/trackballs that I’ve wrapped up & put in my bag in the same manner that have no issues, and I’ve had those for at least 2x longer and put them through more of a beating.

    Has anyone seen any (tried & tested) 3rd-party replacements for the regular MacBook’s power adapter? I’ve seen Macally adapters for old PPC laptops, for instance, but not the newer Intel models.

  35. Trai_Dep says:

    Hey.
    Hey! :D

    Nothing to say but my MacBook w/ magsafe hasn’t been a problem.
    And my Apple tattoo is oozing bitter, bitter tears of recrimination down my inner thigh. (Don’t ask).

    Has anyone done an estimate on the cost from laptops flying off cafe tables b/c of kicked cords and the cost of frayed magsafe cables? Is there some engineering trade-off involved (though I’d think MagSafe is less likely to fray than traditional ones so that doesn’t seem to make sense)

    Needless to say, if there’s a manufacturing foul-up, I hope that Apple hops on this quickly.

  36. Trai_Dep says:

    Oh, and a friendly tip to any portable owner? Buy extended coverage (AppleCare in this case). Otherwise you’re one spill or trip from a couple years of pained self-recrimination and regret.
    NOT blaming the OP for not having AppleCare; I’m even sharing my love for PC laptop owners (see, I’m mother-f*cking GHANDI!): it’s simply a good idea.

  37. Techguy1138 says:

    I’d imagine that you can buy a well built third party adapter at this point without the shorting issue.

    Apple seems to ship flimsy cables. Most of my equipment has third party cables or homemade fixes to Apple cables.

    It might be worth it to also report this to your states attorney general AND BBB. Not because apple is doing a bad job with your repair but, so other consumers outside of the warranty period can get a fix also. Being a responsible consumer also require action on your part to make sure others don’t get the shaft.

  38. legwork says:

    I’m thinking there may be differences between our adapters. Wonder if anyone outside of Apple has tracked serial numbers or revisions?

    My MB Pro has seen 16 months of heavy use without any MagSafe problems. It gets coiled multiple times a day as I move between offices – hundreds of times by now – and the MagSafe end hasn’t made a peep. Do people bend it lots or are some of them defective?

    I did notice the cable gets strained lots near the brick so I stopped coiling around the brick. Instead I just coil it loosely around my hand and toss them in the bag together.

    That $350 Applecare price is *suggested retail*, and it carries a hefty margin. Reward the dealer if they’re worth it. Otherwise, pick it up elsewhere. You don’t have to buy it with the system.

  39. Erki says:

    I have not had any problems with the adapter, though I do think the wire is becoming stiffer with age and that may signal material weakness that could lead to failure. I think the problem is with the design mostly. The adapter used for the MacBook Air seems better since it is not sticking out straight, instead it routes the power cable to the rear. Most of the time, my power adapter is behind my MacBook Pro and the adapter wire is bent to go there. There is very little strain relief so, after a while, it would likely weaken and the wires would fray. The way the Air adapter is designed also gives more opportunity to increase the strain relief length, which would be a good thing.

  40. JohnOB1 says:

    I had mine replaced through Apple Care. They seemed hesitant at first, but ended up replacing it anyway.

    It seems like they have a hard time admitting they have committed these silly design flaws. For example, the wristplate, when the Macbook snaps shut, it puts pressure on that lip of plastic. The constant stress forced this lip to crack. The internet is loaded with people who have complained about this very problem. The “Genius” said it’s because I am not carrying it properly. Eventually – a few months later – they did fix it, but I asked the guy why the first “Genius” would have said something like that when I treat this computer like a baby. (Consumerist, please consider a compilation of BIZARRE CS excuses for their companies’ problems, as I have heard a few gems in my day)

    The Magsafe end of the power cord is constantly under stress and twisting and heating up and twisting and heating up, etc. You would be surprised if it DIDN’T fray.

    Let’s go, Apple… clean up your design messes.

  41. 99% of the mag-safe chargers that I have dealt with as an authorized apple portable tech. has been user error. whether it is tugging at it from the cord (mag-safe end), or wrapping it too tightly around the spool (adapter end). Stop yanking the cable out of the computer, and leave some slack when winding it up…not that hard. Of course, tell that to 500 or so students who have macbooks/MBPs, and you will see a lot of pissed off students.

    There have been a handful of cases where I wasn’t sure either way about whether or not the mag-safe was misused (no wear/damage to the cable other than being burned out) so I replaced those under warranty, but have requested a review by apple and didn’t hear anything past that.

    Apple is, however, taking note of the “aggressive” use of the cables, and is adding additional reinforcement to the bases of the cable where they meet the plug/adapter. It is more stiff, rugged and reinforced than the original

  42. ^ignore the grammatical errors plz

  43. pcj says:

    Two first gen MB’s here, both with their original magsafe connectors. No replacements needed. They both travel extensively, both get wound around the pegs on the power brick every time.

    Apple care is expensive, but well worth it. When the first gen macbooks turned yellow, as did both of ours, it was an overnight visit to the store for new covers. When our batteries stopped holding as much charge as we thought they should, they were on the spot replacements.

    Our G5 iMacs hard drive fried itself. Another short visit to the store for a replacement drive and fresh OSX install.

    The nightmares (massive delays, botched repairs, constantly shipping it around to them) I had trying to get my old Toshiba laptop fixed under the third party warranty company compared to the ease I’ve had under Apple have me quite happy with Apple, the products and the support.

  44. CanadianCynic says:

    My wife just went through the process of getting her MagSafe adapter replaced, it took a little persistence, and insisting over and over again that ‘It’s the MagSafe adapter, not the computer’ then AppleCare finally caved

    Just be polite, the phone monkeys are working for bananas.

  45. LionelEHutz says:

    At least my adapter was busted right out of the box. Apple fixed the situation by sending me a brand spankin’ new one overnight free of charge. This one has been good for 9 months or so.

  46. loudguitars says:

    I’ve had a magsafe with my MBP for about a year now, haven’t had any problems with fraying or sparking despite my clumsy ass tripping on the cord and yanking it out at least once or twice a month.

    Actually, the adapter on my previous PowerBook wound up melting and sparking because I kept tripping on it and it DIDN’T pop out, it just stressed the cord and the plug. That was fun.

  47. xgenius says:

    Apple’s had poorly designed power adapters since the yo-yo adapter and the Powerbook G3. Not sure why they can’t seem to get it right.

  48. mehtajr says:

    My MacBook’s adapter melted through a couple weeks ago. I simply walked into the Apple Store, showed it to the Genius, and they replaced it no questions asked. Even before they ran my Mac’s serial number (it’s under AppleCare, so the replacement was definitely covered), they didn’t make any indication that there would have been a charge for a replacement.

  49. trujunglist says:

    Apple’s had poorly made power adapters for laptops SINCE THEY CREATED THE FIRST ONE. If there’s one thing you can count on with a laptop, it’s getting a new power adapter. That’s just how it is.

  50. moorem2 says:

    I haven’t had any problems with my mac book pro’s charger since getting it a year ago.

    But I did go through two ibook cords before I upgraded. You just call apple, tell them that your charger is on the fritz and the should replace it for you. If not, remind them that the cost of replacing your house (or at least their legal fees in doing so) would cost more than a $79 MSRP charger.

  51. Orv says:

    I’ve had problems with the power adapter on every laptop I’ve owned — IBM Thinkpads, Dells, and MacBooks — except one. That was my old Toshiba Satellite Pro, which had the power adapter *built in to the computer* so all you needed to carry was the AC cord. I miss that design feature.

  52. xgenius says:

    @trujunglist:

    I don’t think that’s exceptable for a $2300 laptop.

  53. sam1am says:

    I had a few power adapters go bad on me which were all replaced. The last one I received is some kind of superman power supply and appears to be indestructible.

  54. mstngo says:

    I bought 4 new power adapters for m powerbook. What a shame to learn the mag safe adapters stink also.

    By the way I just retired my old powerbook for a new macbook pro 15 inch few weeks ago.

  55. OMG! Ponies! says:

    Great thing about the MagSafe connector – it’s patented by Apple, meaning that no one else can make it. And of course that means that MacBook owners have only one place to get adapters.

    Thanks Cupertino for all the gouging.

  56. JoyZ says:

    I wrote the Steve Jobs email at Apple and had a call, some not-so-weird questions, and they sent me a new one and threw in a new duck head as well. They were kind, having a new adapter was helpful, obviously.

    I did/do not abuse my adapter or the wires, but they just aren’t designed well enough to stand up to regular use. It did last a good eight months before giving out, though.

    The thing about wire abuse accusations that bothers me is that it’s a *laptop* – of course I’m going to wind up the cord carry it places. For more than 8 months.

  57. baristabrawl says:

    I’m really careful when wrapping up cords on things, anything, really. I just make sure that I leave a little slack so there’s not much tension on the cord leaving the charger, or device. I just leave a little loop. I also make sure I don’t twist the cord. I always make sure that there very little tension on the cords all the time. Much like when you untangle your iPod, or whatever, headphones. I’m just careful and I make sure that I don’t over tighten.

    Not that it’s his fault, just be careful.

  58. snowygal18 says:

    I don’t have Applecare, but when mine fried itself, I just called Apple, explained that it had been smelling like burning, and they replaced it, no charge, no questions asked.

  59. bougatsa says:

    I am amazed at how many people are highly recommending that people should pay for such a pricey extended warranty with AppleCare, on top of the highest markups in this industry.

    If the issues are so diverse and common as to make the warranty so predictably “worth it”, isn’t that evidence that the quality of the product is extremely lousy?
    And do you really think Apple is losing money with AppleCare?

  60. str1cken says:

    I had one fry on me, which really surprised me. I’ve been doing IT work since I was a little kid, and so problems that most people have don’t usually come my way.

  61. megatrebuchet says:

    partially rabid apple fanboy alert,

    I have been using the macbook since 2006, and I have had the poorly designed adapter cord fray twice. Both times I called apple (USA and Europe). In their defense , they replaced the adapter promptly. NO QUESTIONS ASKED. i would recommend people call apple before spending the hard earned money. The company really does believe in serving its customers.

    See, I told ya partially rabid :)

  62. SpaceCat85 says:

    Forgot to add:
    To stop the small cable from crimping on my new adapter, I took some white 3M plastic/electrical tape and wrapped it thickest near where it comes out of the adapter and gradually wound it more loosely as I went out (approx. 6″ or so). Not the ideal solution by any means, but it stiffened up that part of the cable, and I haven’t seen any signs of crimping there after several months.

    Aesthetics go out the window doing that, of course ;)

  63. Trai_Dep says:

    Talked to a friend that supports dozens of computers for a school (Windows, the poor bast*ard). Winding the cord around the brick IS a big no-no and will probably fray the cord before its time where it connects with the brick. Better to leave it looped loosely or coiled freely.
    Not the problem that some of the MagSafe connections are having (I’d guess, don’t yank by the cord, and especially along the horizontal axis, if you can help it?), but thought I’d pass that on to all you others with bricks that do that…

  64. Trai_Dep says:

    @bougatsa: Everyone, including Consumer Reports, who HATE extended warrantees, say that it’s not a bad idea for any laptop. Not just Apples.

  65. OMG! Ponies! says:

    @Trai_Dep: Threatening a small claims suit against the manufacturer for when your gizmo fails 1 month out of warranty is just as good as an extended warranty and costs nothing. Moreover, there’s nothing immoral, slimy or underhanded about it.

    Apple sold me a $1200 computer. For that money, it should last more than 13 months (the drive did not). I did not buy the warranty. That is because I don’t enjoy it when people say things like “it would be a shame for something bad to happen to your computer 1 month out of warranty” – the basic jist of an extended warranty pitch. Where I come from, we call that a protection racket.

    Instead, when my MacBook died 1 month out of the base warranty period, I gave Apple an ultimatum: repair it for free or defend itself in a small claims suit. I explained that 8 people from Brooklyn would probably agree that a $1200 computer should not die in 13 months. Likewise, when my launch-day XBox 360 died after 14 months (2 months out of warranty), I explained that a 14 month-old $600 piece of “next-gen” equipment should not cost $120 to repair – especially when the manufacturing defect was already admitted. Similarly, iPods are not disposable. Just because you can get one for $200 does not mean that it should last only 90 days (which is its warranty period).

    Extended warranties are little more than shakedowns. The more the equipment costs, the less reason to buy one. This is because, as stated, the best argument is that an expensive piece of equipment should be sufficiently well-made that repairs should not be expected within months of purchase. If someone says otherwise, that person has low expectations. You paid good money for quality; stick by your guns that you deserve either quality build quality or quality service.

    Small claims courts exist to resolve disputes of often less than $5000. That will cover most electronics that one purchases. Additionally, many States, like NY, have laws stating that corporations cannot appear or defend themselves pro se – meaning that some clerk cannot appear. Rather, even small claims need to get routed through legal departments, resulting in attorneys’ fees which can exceed cost of repair within a day. On top of that, in the world of products-liability, the last thing any manufacturer wants is an adverse verdict.

    Threaten litigation in a calm, cool manner and be willing to hold. You can often get a repair even outside of warranty.

  66. ToddBradley says:

    Just so there’s some balance to this complaint, I’ve had 2 MagSafe adapters for my MacBook Pro for about 18 months. I haven’t had a single problem with either one of them. I use them both regularly, and abuse them both occasionally. To me, they seem well designed and quite solid. I show them off to all my non-Mac-owning friends at every opportunity.

  67. joant says:

    Apple power supplies have been crap for years. Ever since that clamshell notebook (first gen iBook), my mom’s been replacing her frayed power plugs every 6 months on every MacBook/iBook she’s owned. We’re very careful with them, the plugs stay in one place in the house at all times (behind a desk), but the wires still get damaged from light use.

  68. Trai_Dep says:

    @ToddBradley: So can not being a jackass. I had a power supply die on my iMac 6 months out of warrantee, and without asking they fixed it for free, in a day. Words to live by: sugar attracts more flies than vinegar, baybie.
    And makes you more popular.
    Eww: flies. Unless you’re Renfield. Or a goth.

  69. etho says:

    Hm. I’ve had a laptop with a mag safe for a year and a half now, and I haven’t had any problems yet. In fact I didn’t know they had problems until just now. I’ll have to keep an eye on it.

    The power cord design they used before the Magsafe was terrible. Mine lasted about 6 months before it just stopped working. Then I replaced, and it lasted about four months. I then got a third party knock off, which lasted another 6 months. Another brand lasted until I got a new laptop.

    I love Apple, and think they make really good products, but they do seem to have problems like this from time to time.

  70. etho says:

    @Trai_Dep:

    Technically, vinegar actually attracts more flies. But I get what you’re saying and you make a good point.

  71. zzzapper says:

    Late a night, couldn’t sleep, have given up Marathon Rubicon for awhile, so here I am.

    An observation and a comment …

    First, to establish my “credentials,” I’ve owned a Macintosh “Portable” [Editorial comment: “Ha!”], a PowerBook 100, PB 140/145/150’s, 2300’s, 540’s, Lombards, several iBooks, both clamshell and white, three MacBooks, and, at the moment, am working on a MacBook Pro.

    Historically, Apple has always designed lousy power connections for their laptops. The “bricks” are larger than necessary, the cords are either too thick or too thin, the “coiling function” is usually a joke, and the male/female connections on the computers themselves are mechanical abominations, their disaster potential best summarized by the instructions carefully given by all Apple laptop owners as they hand their precious machines to friends, acquaintances, relatives, or admiring co-workers, “Please … be very careful of the power connector … don’t bump it … don’t press against it … don’t pull on it … don’t put any pressure on it …”

    In this sense, for all it’s failings, Apple’s new magnetic connector is a quantum improvement over what we’ve suffered.

    Now, my comment. I’ve also owned HP’s, Dell’s, Compaq’s, and, once, a most elegant Sony. None of them were any better than Apple when it comes to connecting their laptops to the wall! None had better “warranties” on their products, none provided any better customer service [in truth, if available to you, the Apple stores’ service desks are a consumer’s dream come true]. Apple changes power supplies/connections like I change my shirts … but, if you’ll do a websearch with the terms “Dell laptop power supply,” then do the same again using different brand names, you will find that Apple is simply one of the gang!

    Apple “fans,” you want things to improve? Is easy: one of you needs to get Steve Jobs to have to use a MacBook with the power supply attached to the wall. Get him to have to pack the little brick into his laptop case, carry it with him wherever he goes, and, yes, get Steve to notice that after relatively little use the cord begins to show an inordanant amount of wear. Remember, people, in the beginning Steve didn’t like “fans,” so, as is his way, he simply ignored them … things haven’t changed when it comes to power connectors, cords, and ac/dc convertors.

    Is almost humerous, if you think about it. Magazines award Apple little trophies for “design,” even the conservative Wintell business world raves about Apple’s focus on look/feel, yet, like the flashlight industry with its “D-cells,” after twenty years or so of laptop design and improvement we’re all still stuck “pluggin’ a brick into the wall!”

    Here’s a question: How many of you would accept, oh, let’s say a ten percent increase in your laptop’s size if it meant you only had to carry a standard coil AC cord to get power?

  72. ABA477 says:

    I have fried out 2 magsafe adapters and apple has replaced them both. Mention the possibility of fire and they pretty much have to send you a new one. The second sent was even after my warranty ended.

  73. ReedPeafowl says:

    Comment on Apple’s MagSafe Adapters Still Fraying, Melting, Sucking Apple’s power supplies are small and stylish, but I have had numerous
    problems with the power supplies on my G4 PowerBook. I bought two
    power supplies and each developed similar fraying problems. Getting
    tired of the $80+ dollars per unit, I bought and iGo power supply
    instead. I haven’t seen a magnetic tip yet…