I created a guide in the Hardware section mate of my experiences.
I took the machine apart and fixed myself using flux, a heat gun and silver thermal paste.
Got my game back and even managed to do a full backup of my harddrive via network transfer from the old PS3 to a new slim PS3.
I then sold my old machine and so far have not heard that it has failed.
Click indicated the machine he fixed got him 3 weeks of game playing before it died. A second fix last even less time.
I'm under the impression if you send it away you will get it back minus anything on the hard drive as a new motherboard will not like anything you had previously saved on the hard drive so it gets wiped. This was the main reason I decided to fix myself, that and the fact it will cost you dearly to fix through Sony. Like the cost of a new one.
Not sure if anyone else has gone the Sony repair route.