Remember the Nvidia GeForce 8600MT graphics cards in the 2007-08 MacBook Pros? It may be happening again. It seems that many people with early 2011 MacBook Pros with the AMD Radeon 6490M, 6750M, and 6970M GPUs are having issues while using the discrete graphics. There are a few threads on the Apple Discussion forums about the issue. It seems that the majority of the problem is the discrete graphics and that the problem appears after switching to the descrete graphics.
This is bad because my main machine is an early 2011 MBP with a Radeon 6490M. I haven’t had any issues. Yet. I hope it stays that way also. If this becomes a widespread issue, I hope it becomes big enough so that history repeats itself and the warranty gets extended. I didn’t purchase AppleCare when I got this machine. (Truthfully, I haven’t bought AppleCare for any of the Macs I’ve bought because I usually end up voiding the warranty shortly after I get them.)
After hearing about this, I’m actually quite surprised I haven’t had any issues yet. I switch between the integrated and discrete graphics frequently. I do game some on this machine and the 6490M does get used a decent amount. Plus, some apps aren’t coded well and “need” the descrete graphics even though they don’t do any fancy graphical artwork. Seriously Adobe, why the fuck does Brackets require the discrete graphics? It’s a text editor.