2011 15" Macbook Pro - Thermal Paste Reapplication - HUGE Success

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Littleodie914, Mar 24, 2011.

  1. Littleodie914, Mar 24, 2011
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2011

    Littleodie914 macrumors 68000


    Jun 9, 2004
    Rochester, NY
    I'm kicking myself for not taking pictures before/during/after I replaced the thermal paste on my two-week-old 2011 15" Macbook Pro. This post is significantly less exciting without them. :eek:

    Running Folding@Home previously, the temperatures for the CPU would hover around 91-94 degrees Celsius.

    After the reapplication (which was very easy, and I was really disappointed by the shoddy job they did originally), I can't get the temps over 85. Not a bad improvement for a half hour's work!

    I used the Arctic Silver 5 thermal paste, and the screwdriver kit provided by iFixIt:



    Has anyone else reapplied the thermal paste on their machines and seen a similar improvement?
  2. edifyingGerbil macrumors regular

    Feb 13, 2011
    I want to, just to say I did it, but even doing > yes /dev/ null 8 times my cpu temperature didn't go above ~85c so I don't think there's any real need to.

    As it stands, just browsing the internet and watching youtube videos (integrated graphics) I stay at 30-35c. Even on Windows 7 I usually maintain ~45c.

    I probably have just the right amount, or the SMC/PRAM reset that I did when I first got it sorted things out. Who knows?

    Was there much thermal paste in yours?
  3. ryanrich macrumors regular

    Nov 16, 2010
    Cape Town, South Africa

    I replaced the thermal paste on my 2010 i7 yesterday. Put some Antec Formula 7 on and have seen similar results to you. Well worth the effort, and now I know the inner working of my MacBook a bit more so can easily remove the logic board if need be. :)
  4. Littleodie914 thread starter macrumors 68000


    Jun 9, 2004
    Rochester, NY
    Huh, maybe you got a good one! :D

    There was a lot of paste on mine, it was a good centimeter off the main cores, nearly touching whatever other little gizmos sit on the board. I am again kicking myself for not taking a picture before I started scraping it off.

    Edit: Wow, only 30-35C? Mine after the thermal paste, just sitting idle at the desktop, is around 43C, 45C with Sparrow and Twitter open. :confused:
  5. TheFarmer macrumors 6502

    Jan 13, 2011
    With simple things like iTunes playing music, Safari reading email/browsing forums mine is only at 32-35C.
  6. Littleodie914 thread starter macrumors 68000


    Jun 9, 2004
    Rochester, NY
    How are you guys viewing your stats? Which temperature are you reading?

    I'm using iStat Pro (the dashboard widget) and reading the CPU temp.

    Other temps:

    CPU Heatsink - 36
    Enclosure Base - 33
    Enclosure Base 2 - 33
    Enclosure Base 3 - 31
    GPU - 36
    Headsink B - 34
    Mem Controller - 34
  7. TheFarmer macrumors 6502

    Jan 13, 2011
    Same as you. iStat dashboard widget and reading the CPU temp.
  8. legreve macrumors regular


    Nov 22, 2010
    Nice to hear more success stories.

    After reading the thermal application guide I decided that once I get the below mentioned mbp I will do an "I've never done this before instructional video" with before and after shots and and maybe a step by step part of cleaning it up and reapplying the paste.
    Along with before and after shots of boot times and istats in live and still photos.
  9. edifyingGerbil macrumors regular

    Feb 13, 2011
    I'm using iStat pro too, I think I put a screenshot of it somewhere, in another thread about overheating.

    Have you installed http://codykrieger.com/gfxCardStatus/ ?

    I find leaving it on integrated graphics whilst browsing the internet and general pottering about keeps the temps really cool. Flash and Chrome always seem to invoke the discrete graphics card which may be pushing up temperatures?

    EDIT: you might benefit from resetting the SMC and PRAM, it's the first thing I did after getting my MBP up and running.
  10. bcrawfo2 macrumors member

    Dec 20, 2010
    I get the same 15" i7 2.2ghz. I run 8@ yes > /dev/null and I max out at 85C. This is with my Spec case on...and with the MBP sitting on my desk which has a baseboard heater on under it.
    Mine was BTO...I wonder if the initial batch that went to stores as stock configs were sloppy and the BTOs were done more carefully?
  11. edifyingGerbil macrumors regular

    Feb 13, 2011
    That's an interesting theory and matched up with what an Apple Sales rep told me over the phone: if I were to order a high-res screen it would have to be built and shipped from China implying they don't just remove the screen off an already built one but actually assemble one from scratch. It could just be propaganda of course.

    Also, the first MBP I got, a 2.0, made strange beeping noises from the motherboard when I did two-fingered scrolling in Windows which was kind of disturbing.

    This one I got, which works extremely well, about a month after the initial release.
  12. ryanrich macrumors regular

    Nov 16, 2010
    Cape Town, South Africa
    At what fan speed, the standard? With 8 of those running I can only stay under 90C by putting the fans on max (6000 RPM)... :(
  13. brentsg macrumors 68040

    Oct 15, 2008
    Doubtful, this has been going on for years.
  14. lurrego macrumors member

    Feb 25, 2011
    with the new update to OS X, my idle temps (CPU reading) with firefox, ichat, mail, and watching a youtube video stayed at around 32-34C, now having the same minus the youtube video leaves it at 48C, and with the youtube video it shoots up to 54C :( I thought I didn't need to reapply the thermalpaste on my unit with my initial temps but now it looks like I may have to try it out
  15. SideStepSociety macrumors 6502


    Feb 12, 2011
    Vancouver, BC
    With stock thermal paste:

    CPU - 35
    CPU Heatsink - 28
    E.B. 1 - 27
    E.B. 2 - 27
    E.B. 3 - 24
    GPU - 31
    Heatsink B - 30
    Mem controller - 30

    This is on a 17" however.
  16. Wehrwolf macrumors 6502


    May 21, 2009
    BTOs are just that - built to order in China and shipped directly to your doorstep. They don't "frankenstein" new stock like that. Standard units generally ship from warehouses in the US, unless orders are backed up and units are being sold as fast as they're being built.

    I generally don't buy first run machines until the issues have been worked out, but I lucked out on my BTO 2010 MBP which I ordered the day they were released. Almost a year out, no problems yet.
  17. gigapocket1 macrumors 65816

    Mar 15, 2009
    Those reapplying your thermal paste void your warrenty??

    Anybody in the memphis area this weekend want to do it for me?

    Or if not anybody in the Orlando/Tampa/Lake Wales Fl area can do it for me as well??
  18. striker33 macrumors 65816


    Aug 6, 2010
    Was considering doing this myself, however after doing the cpu stress test on terminal my CPU temp sat at around 80c with the fans at 5500rpm, and they never seem to go above 82c, so I'm guesing I've got a good one.

    The thing that I'm confused about is the fact that yours now runs at 85c max with the arctic silver, yet I cant reach that with stock paste?
  19. larryj macrumors member

    Jul 7, 2007
    Thinking of trying this with my 2011 15".

    I just got a 27" ACD display today. At 2560 x 1440, with the MBP closed and the discrete card active, I'm at 61 degrees just browsing.

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