Is gaming "safe"

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by Cyber735, Aug 12, 2013.

  1. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2013
    #1
    Hi,

    So I've got a 2013 13" i5 8gb ram MacBook Air.

    I've done some light gaming (civ5 - low settings) and I reach about 58C (136F) temperature with about 2200 rpm fanspeed.

    When I try to ramp it up a bit (tf2 - high settings) I see a huge difference, around 65C/149 F with a fanspeed of over 5000 rpm.

    (Temperatures taken from memory bank 1 which is always the hottest for me)

    Anyway, I'm just wondering if this is bad for my Mac? I don't want to shorten it's life span or damage anything. Is it okay to do it for a prolonged time (2 - 3 hours?)

    What temperatures/fanspeeds have you reached before? what's the max?

    I know there's a lot of safeguards in place to prevent damage, but that doesn't necessarily it's good for the longterm health of your mac, right?

    Oh and out of interest, what temp/fanspeed do you reach when just doing light tasks like web browsing. I'm at 29C/84F with 1183rpm. Is that normal?

    Thanks,
     
  2. macrumors 6502

    bolen

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2008
    Location:
    Sweden
    #2
    It's safe. There are various arguments whether it affects battery health (due to excess heat transferring to the battery), but I would say that it is safe.

    The individual components (CPU/GPU) are designed to handle up to around 120 ºC and the Macbook will first throttle the CPU and/or the GPU speed to stay within limits, and if that doesn't help it will effectively shut it self off if it's reaching critical temperatures.
     
  3. macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2012
    #3
    While the community would agree the Air is not really a game machine, but u gotta do what u gotta do bro!

    I mean EVERYTHING wear out, and the more u use it, technically it wears out faster. By how much nobody knows.

    Enjoy life, don't worry about the little things.
     
  4. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 27, 2013
    #4
    Nahh, gaming's really unsafe, billions of people die from gaming and gaming related injuries every day.
     
  5. simsaladimbamba

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
    Location:
    located
    #5
  6. macrumors G3

    Apple fanboy

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2012
    Location:
    Behind the lens, UK
    #6
    Can't they just respawn?:D
     
  7. macrumors 68020

    Kissaragi

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2006
  8. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2013
    #8
    Yeah I really needed the battery life & portability factor of an air for work. I'm by no means a hardcore gamer, but the air it's more than capable for most games on low - medium settings from what I've seen, so I'm pretty happy with it - a nice compromise.

    ----------


    That's strange, the post states that mbas run at a minimum of 1800 rpm fanspeed. I'm guessing the 2013 model is now 1100 minimum or am I just lucky?
     
  9. macrumors 604

    ZBoater

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2007
    Location:
    Sunny Florida
    #9
    It depends which game you are playing. Russian roulette is very unsafe. Also some games with pretty girls that you don't know could be potentially unsafe.

    As far as your MBA's temperature is concerned, don't worry about it. Computers are pretty smart these days. They won't go beyond their limit and break themselves.
     
  10. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2013
    Location:
    Toledo, Ohio
    #10
    ok then take the fan out.. :rolleyes:
     
  11. Guest

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2010
    #11
    You wont die but Macs just suck for gaming in general.

    Check out the Steam forums under the Mac version. Nothing but complaints and issues.
     
  12. macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2012
    #12

    That's why people build game machines with liquid cooling.

    Air = use a pairs of noise blocking headsets. They ALL say noise blocking but u want the ones that specify, 25-30+ db noise reduction.
     
  13. macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2007
    #13
    Mine is currently running at 1198. I guess they changed it because the Haswell version runs cooler.

    Certainly under normal use it's the coolest and quietest running computer I've ever owned.
     
  14. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2013
    #14
    Yep, I've had mine for a week now (it's my first mac computer in my life) and fan went on only once for like 10 mins in this whole week and that's when I was editing some video in final cut pro. This is just fantastic you know. My Dell Latitude E4300 business notebook runs the fan using the calculator.
     
  15. macrumors 65816

    ctdonath

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2009
    #15
    Case in point: I have an old (8 yr) Sony notebook whose fan died. I've been hoping the darned thing would overheat itself to death, but it just won't die. CPU knows it's overheating, so it slows down and cools itself off that way.

    Don't worry. The MBA (and all other decent computers) is designed to function within various limits, and will ensure it stays within those limits. The limits might exceed the user's tolerance (say, temperature) but just because you touch it and say "OW!" doesn't mean it is suffering.
     
  16. macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2004
    #16
    Stop your worrying and enjoy your machine. Intel has put safeguards in place, but there are so many other variables at play that it's just not worth it to worry about.

    Purely hypothetical, but if the machine will last 11 years without gaming and only 9 with gaming, is it a big deal when you're only planning on keeping it for 3-4 years?

    What happens when 6 months from now someone spills a drink on it and it has to be replaced anyway?

    If you die in the Matrix...
     
  17. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2011
    #17
    The best thing I have found in preserving the life of my electronics is never taking them out of the box. Seriously just thinking about the damage that electricity will do to electronics is not worth it. But what really sold me on never using my 1200 dollar macbook air was battery life. did you know the battery is only rated for 1000 charges before it will dip below 80 percent capacity! No thank you. Just purchase the machine and never use it and it will last forever. It also helps with resell value.
     
  18. macrumors G5

    jav6454

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2007
    Location:
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
    #18
    I wouldn't even consider the MacBook Air for gaming purposes. Unless said games are chess, Solitaire and the likes.
     
  19. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2011
    #19
  20. macrumors G5

    jav6454

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2007
    Location:
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
    #20
  21. macrumors 604

    ZBoater

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2007
    Location:
    Sunny Florida
    #21
    It may not be the ultimate gaming platform, but it plays most games well enough. A lot more than just chess and solitaire... :rolleyes:
     
  22. macrumors G5

    jav6454

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2007
    Location:
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
    #22
    Like I said, if you like a hot iron on your lap, by all means go ahead. Not to mention, overall performance will drop once the thermal throttling kicks in. :rolleyes:

    Just because it can doesn't mean it should. That's the hard cold truth about gaming on a MacBook Air.
     
  23. macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2004
    #23
    There's a difference between a "gaming computer" and a "computer that can play games".

    No one here is arguing the Air is the former. The Air is definitely not great for people who play a lot of games, and anyone who buys an Air primarily as a gaming system will be sorely disappointed. But the Air is capable of running more than just the games you list.

    Personally, I play Minecraft for 2-4 hours a week. It's the only time I've ever heard the fans kick in. But I get decent frame rates and the machine keeps up, so for ~1-2% of my total usage, it works. I'd wager it's a similar story with most people who inquire about the gaming abilities of the Air.
     
  24. macrumors 604

    ZBoater

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2007
    Location:
    Sunny Florida
    #24
    Ummm, ok. I don''t put my gaming desktop on my lap either. And several days of Civ5 gaming contradicts your performance statement.
     
  25. AXs
    macrumors 6502a

    AXs

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2009
    #25
    No. The Air is one of the weakest full-laptops around.

    If you're buying the Air for gaming you're going to have a bad time.

    It's a great laptop no question, great for work. But gaming with Air, or gaming with Mac in general? Negative.
     

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