3.1GHz i7 hotter and slower when gaming?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by virginblue4, Jan 13, 2013.

  1. virginblue4 macrumors 68000


    Apr 15, 2012
    United Kingdom
    Will the i7 run hotter than the i5 when gaming and will this cause any damage or reduce the lifespan?

    Also, I read somewhere that the hyper threading capabilities of the i7 reduce the FPS when gaming, is this true?
  2. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    The Intel processors used in Macs are designed to automatically shut down to prevent damage if they truly overheat. CPU Tjmax = 105C (221F), GPU Tjmax = 100C (212F) on i3, i5, i7 processors. (Source: Intel)

    If you're not already using it, iStat Pro (free) or iStat Menus ($16) will give you accurate readings of your temps and fan speeds, among other things.

    Unless there is a rare defect in a Mac, most temps are well within the normal operating range, considering the workload being put on it. Websites with Flash content, games and other multimedia apps will put higher demand on the CPU/GPU, generating more heat. This is normal. If you're constantly putting high demands on your system, such as gaming or other multimedia tasks, expect temps to rise and fans to spin up accordingly. It's just your Mac doing its job to maintain temps within the normal range.

    It is also quite normal for your Mac to become extremely hot to the touch during intensive operations. The aluminum body transfers heat more effectively than other materials used in computer casings, so you will feel the heat more. This doesn't indicate that it's overheating and will not harm the computer to be hot to the touch.

    Your fans are always on when your Mac is on, spinning at a minimum of 2000 rpm (for MBPs) or 1800 rpm (for MBAs, MBs and minis). iMacs have 3 fans with minimum speeds in the 800-1200 range. They will spin faster as needed to keep temps at a safe level.

    If your fans are spinning up without increased heat, try resetting the SMC.
    (PRAM/NVRAM has nothing to do with these issues, so resetting it will not help.)

    The intake and exhaust vents are in the back of the computer near the hinge on all Mac notebooks (except the new MBP with retina display, which has intake vents along the sides at the bottom). The iMac vent is a slot on the back near the top of the computer. Make sure the vents remain unblocked to allow your computer to perform at its best.

    Learn about the fans in your Mac
    Apple Portables: Operating temperature

    For Flash-related issues:
  3. Mac32 Suspended

    Nov 20, 2010
    Hyperthreading will not slow down your games, but it will not make them much faster either. In some cases HT can make a difference, but so far we're talking about only a limited number of games. HT could become more important in the future, but who knows... HT on a dualcore CPUs (i3) makes a big difference in speed, but so far games are not able to use more than 4 cores very effectively (except for a few titles), so therefore HT on a quadcore gives very little difference in speed.
    i7 will be a bit hotter when gaming yes, but how much I can't say..
  4. Johnf1285 macrumors 6502a


    Dec 25, 2010
    New Jersey
    Short answer, no and no.

    Yes the i7 will be ever slightly hotter due to the increase in clock speed, otherwise it shares the same 65w TDP as the i5. It'll be fine.
  5. Bear macrumors G3

    Jul 23, 2002
    Sol III - Terra
    The i7 may run a little hotter, but not enough to cause any damage.

    Hyperthreading will not reduce the FPS.
  6. Mac32 Suspended

    Nov 20, 2010
    It's mainly the hyperthreading function that adds heat, which overall adds some heat when doing more heavy operations/CPU load (like gaming). That's why overclockers usually disable HT to get higher speeds. Again, how much exactly is difficult to say, as I haven't tested HT off vs. on myself.

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