I'm with you Amclaussen. I bought a computer set-up with printer and monitor for my kids a bunch of years ago (out of self defense). It was an HP package. I felt safe with the brand. What a laugh. I got caught in that wave of HP's first quality crash. It would take a few paragraphis to explain everything that went wrong. The gist is that my kids ended up using my computer anyway.
While "outsourced manufacture" could be blamed for the terrible quality issues of not just HP, but many other brands, the ROOT CAUSE is just the absolutely greedy attitude of good american brand managers pursuing to extract every fraction of the last cent from their business, while recitating the "I don't care" credo towards their customers. It is like blaming on China everything, while 99.9% of the american businesses have sent their manufacturing over there.
BTW: I was an admirer and fan of HP for many many years... I studied engineering backed by the terrific help from my old trusty HP-45 scientific pocket calculator, and made some 80 hand made Speaker systems with the help of an old HP Audio Oscillator (which I still have, and, you guess: still works beautifully (except for a noisy attenuator potentiomeer, but that is a really MINOR flaw after more than 42 years of being fabricated)!
Other than replacing the old NiCad rechargeable batteries with NiMH ones, the old calculator still performs beautifully, and looks like new! I can't imagine the numer of millions of times its keys have been pressed, without a single failure... how about quality and reliability?
How has HP transformed from that legendary company to today's garbage producer?
Easy, just ask Carly Fiorina and other CEO's) where did their insulting bonuses went (certainly NOT to R&D at HP. Corruption and moral values decline is the root cause. I imagine what would say and do Bill and Dave ( William "Bill" Redington Hewlett and Dave Packard ) if they would be alive today and see how far from their "the HP way" philosophy the actual company has strayed...
I also search HP communities and forums for DIY replacement guides. We use HP inkjet cartridges for our business and we usually order HP Photosmart Ink from euroffice. These communities were helpful, I didn't need to consult a professional to get my printer fixed.
As luck would have it his hp laserjet printer cartridge died shortly after the warranty period expired, and HP was ready to charge him €350 to repair it. Since that would pretty much buy a new one, he decided to try fixing the problem himself. He scoured the Internet for a solution to his problem, and luckily discovered that his printer might be recoverable for more info click here.
Yeah, dry joint in electronics product is common. I used to work with Sony TV production line and some of the major problem with the TV circuit operation is mainly due to the dry joint. You are lucky since you are quite technical and have the courage to identify the root cause of the problem. How about the others? Its really sad that HP have this kind of problem. I also have a problem with my HP 6000 office. The power supply breakdown for the second time in 2 years. To make things worst you cannot get it at the common electronic store. You have to pay it through bank order at a bank which do not have many branches and far away from my home. After bank in, you have to fax the copy of the payslip and then they will send it to me by courier. What happen to HP when it come to customer service? Is it the same in US or only in Malaysia?
This was an interesting thread having been in the electronic (computers, telecom, and automotive) connector business as an engineer for 22 years before I moved into the dental equipment market almost 10 years ago. There are several PCB or connector fabrication issues that can cause failure over time correctable, at least temporarily, by an oven bake at 350 degrees F.
Tin Slivers: Once you go below 3% lead, tin whiskers can become a significant issue. This is largely driven by electrical potential. I have heard oc cases where tin slivers even punch through soft plastic connector insulators and shorted between terminals. This is a big problem with low voltage logic circuitry, which increases with closer circuitry spacing. Higher voltage or higher current will usually burn-out that thin errant connection. One of the early shuttles had 4 out of 5 redundant computers short-out from solder slivers floating around in zero gravity. (A nearly catastrophic result.) A high temperature bake could reflow solder to solve this problem, but I would expect to need to be up closer to 900 degrees F to do that. A lower temperature bake could create enough plastic movement to disrupt the bogus connection.
Silver dentrite growth: A humid environment, silver, and electrical protential can grow silver dendrites until they short. Again this increases with closer circuitry spacing. Driving moisture out with heat could increase the resistance enough to temporarily resolve the problem, or plastic movement could break the errant connection.
Black Plastic Insulator Pigment: Poorly dispursed black carbon pigment in injection molded plastic insulators can cause a high resistance short. This can be worsened with moisture driving the resistance down. Again, baking can temporarily drive that moisture out, or cause enough plastic movement to disrupt the carbon connection.
Cold solder joint: A solder joint with inadequate temperature or movement during solidification can have microcracks that oxidize until there is a high resistance connection or open. This can be fixed with a soldering iron, hot air reflow, or even diffusion bonding at a lower temperature could reestablish function connection.
Capacitor and resistor hygroscopic behavior: I have heard that cheaper capacitors (non-tantalum) and carbon resistors can absorb water moisture until their values create problems with the circuit. Baking can temporarily drive that moisture out and reestablish the needed values. Baking as low as 150 degrees F may temporarily correct this problem.
I would expect the last two possibilities are the most likely root cause problems that would be fixed temporarily by an oven bake of the PCB. The cold solder joint may even have a good-enough bond to be permanently fixed by this bake.
I am fascinated by all of the efforts spent to save/revive equipment that has either failed or just been plain obsoleted. I had a HP Draftmaster RX pen plotter that I used mostly trouble free for the 6 years I was in business for myself. After taking a job in industry, it mostly sat idle unless the plotter at work screwed up and I took things home to plot.
Later I went back to school and used it again for school projects, but it sat unused for about 10 years. I wanted to get it out of my office, so I tried unsuccessfully to first sell it and then to give it away. I paid $5000 for it new and even though it had paid for itself many times over I could not bring myself to just throw it away, so periodically I would put it on Craigslist for free. I finally got a taker and to show the new owners how to load pens and paper, I ran it through the canned demo program onboard the plotter. The pens I put in were mostly dry, but the plotter ran through its paces flawlessly. I was awed.
I would never want to go back to pen plotters because of the noise and length of plotting time, but I do not think any inkjet plotter I have seen can produce the clean, crisp, well defined lines that came from my Draftmaster.
You make a point that hadn't occurred to me, Oldtimer, and that's the notion the miniaturization could aggravate the problem with tin whiskers. The whiskers don't matter unless they create a short. The likelihood of creating a short will increase with miniaturization.
Yes, I would say that the problem involves several issues.
The " lead free " solder is actually a compromise solution to get the RoHS certification. I've perviously tested several early types of lead-free solders before RoHS made lead an issue....I wont go into the politics of why I don't follow RoHS guidelines when doing rework, I just know and have personal experience with improper bonding and contact issues with lead free solder. It appears that the stuff I discovered 20 years ago still applies today.
I looked at the process curves for device mount and proper contact to get a proper solder joint. We used to have a bigger " window " of solderability when working with tin-lead ( and even silver ) solders. That " window " is significantly closed with RoHS solder. There isn't much time to be at the higher temperatures before you heat damage the GPU in my example.
I had looked at this issue to make sure the builds at Cray were done with reliability, as much of the original systems were built by hand with MANY custom wires to get the speeds we got.
If we had been forced to use the RoHS solder specs over 20 years ago, our Crays would never have had the reliability they had.
On the ( officially a ) Metal Migration issue, repeated high heat levels make the whiskers grow. This is an atomic level problem based on movement of charged elements.
What we see today with component failures today is a result of the miniturization and crowding of internal IC components.
( This is what information you gain when you work around a team of experts in their fields and take tke courses they offer at your local Community College )
Design News and Digi-Key presents: Creating & Testing Your First RTOS Application Using MQX, a crash course that will look at defining a project, selecting a target processor, blocking code, defining tasks, completing code, and debugging.
These are the toys that inspired budding engineers to try out sublime designs, create miniature structures, and experiment with bizarre contraptions using sets that could be torn down and reconstructed over and over.
Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.