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Released in July 2018, the 15" MacBook Pro, model A1990, features a 15.4 inch LED-Backlight display with True Tone technology, TouchID, and up to 6 Core i9 Processor.

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Touchbar stopped working and a fuse burned?

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I am an amateur so bear with me. I started trying to repair this Macbook Pro some time ago. Its my own.

Today I disconnected and connected the motherboard due to some work in the power button / touch id (There is another post related to this.

So, that is a short summary and what happened now is that when I reassembled the computer and turned it on I notices that the touch bar was not showing anything so I turned off the computer and looked inside to have a look at a connector on a cable that I messed up a year ago (Sadly I was not as careful back..). While examining the cable and connector and touching it I noticed some smoke(?).. I thought that I imagined it.. Then I see sparks and a tiny fire! I rush to disconnect the cable from the connector and disconnect the battery..

Here I am now, with two questions:

  1. Where does the touch bar get its power from? I cant figure it out by myself.
  2. What is this connector that I messed up used for and did I burn a fuse on the MB? How should I proceed?
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So. I have never seen this issue on a Touchbar, But this is actually an extremely common issue in various iterations.

To start, that is the connector for the Touchbar's touchscreen. Which is likely why it's not working. For point of reference, the one for the display bit of the Touchbar is the one all the way in the bottom right corner, near the speaker.

The component on the board that is charred, is on an electrical line called PP5V_GS3. This is a 5 volt line, which supplies power to touch components in the touch bar (and others). The component itself is a small inductor that does act much like a fuse in this particular case.

Usually this occurs when a connector is plugged in or unplugged when the battery for the device is still connected. But it could be due to poor seating on the cable, or the connector (on either side) having some damage. But regardless. The PP5V_GS3 line ended up shorting to ground, which means rather than its normal path, it was getting a direct, little or no resistance path to ground. Usually that ends in more current being drawn than some component is rated for and it blows. Like the the little inductor on your board.

If you notice in your picture, aside from the pin to pointed to, there is another both on the board side, and the cable side that have clearly seen some heat. That will be your actual issue. That's the connector correlation to the burned inductor.

Realistically you'll need to replace the burned component at a minimum. But could be more depending on how the short actually occurred. It's hard to tell for sure just from pictures and your description. You may need to enlist someone with some soldering know how to help with this one if that's not in your current skill set.

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Thank you for your quick and descriptive answer! I do have a massive set of tools here that I built up over the year while trying to learn micro-soldering on other projects of mine so I do intend to replace the components myself. However when it comes to aquiring the components I am clueless.. Any idea? Will I find it at some store?


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This looks like a cascading failure!

The connector was damaged during the removal, a pin was damaged shorting out damaging the connector mate as well as burn the component (I believe this is a resistor) when the connector was plugged together.

So you need to seek help from someone with deeper skills and the tools to replace the connectors and at least this damaged component.

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For now I just wrapped the touch bar flex cable (821-00480) and connector on the mb with kapton tape and booted up the computer. Everything appears to work fine without the touch bar. Maybe I'll fix it in the future, maybe not..

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Ted Lindström será eternamente grato(a).
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