Tuesday, January 31, 2017

LG 5K Display and Wi-Fi Interference

Sebastian Anthony (via Peter Steinberger, Hacker News):

The spiritual successor to Apple’s Thunderbolt Display, the LG UltraFine 5K monitor, which only started shipping out from the Apple online store this week, appears to suffer from a major fault: when placed within two metres (6.5ft) of a wireless router, the display starts to flicker; move it really close, and the monitor goes black and becomes unusable. An LG Electronics support person confirmed the issue, saying it “only happens for the 5K monitors we have, not other LG monitors.”

If that wasn’t bad enough, 9to5Mac’s Zac Hall reports that his LG 5K monitor, under the duress of a nearby Wi-Fi router, can freeze the MacBook Pro that it’s plugged into, forcing a reboot to bring it back. When he moved the router (an Apple AirPort Extreme) from beside the monitor to another room, everything went back to normal.

The Apple Store reviews are also a horror show.

Previously: LG Ultrafine 5K Reviews.

Update (2017-01-31): McCloud:

I bought the 4K version and it literally worked only twice. Third time plugging it in it died.

Luc Vandal:

The first 5K display I received had the same issues as the 4K except that it worked for about a minute and then just died. Since I had similar issues with the previous display, I went to the Apple Store to exchange the laptop for a new one, thinking that something was wrong with it. Unfortunately it didn’t solve the issue and had to, once again, send the display back to Apple and order a new one.


The thing wobbles like a Bobblehead. I don’t have the most stable desk but that was never an issue with my iMac.


The overall construction quality not what you would expect from a product endorsed by Apple. This display is more expensive than a Thunderbolt Display and yet it feels much cheaper. That Apple is fine with that is beyond me.

Update (2017-02-03): Benjamin Mayo (iMore, MacRumors, Hacker News):

LG has now said that it has identified the hardware problem in which Wi-Fi routers within 2 feet of the display resulted in signal interference issues. All new UltraFine units produced after February will not be affected as they will be fitted with ‘enhanced shielding’. Existing owners of the UltraFine 5K Display, recommended by Apple as the best companion to the 2016 MacBook Pro, will need to contact LG support for assistance.

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[…] this. I have an old Mac and sometimes think a new one would be more reliable, until I read about problems people are having with a brand new MacBook Pro and […]

I suppose that display won't work too well nearby a microwave oven, either…

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