Apple tech support guy says don't run MacBook on your lap.

stoavio

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 8, 2006
46
0
A friend of mine was having the infamous overheating and whining/hissing sound issues with his MacBook Pro and decided to call apple. He told me that the tech support representive he spoke with on the phone said that the MBP (or any Apple notebook I'm assuming) isn't supposed to be used on a lap and hence them referring to them as notebooks rather than laptops. Is this true? Are they really not supposed to be used on your lap? Should they be usable on someone's lap? Is this common knowledge about Apple notebooks or is this guy full of it? I have no idea.

He also mentioned something about airflow and how the notebooks were run cooler on flat surfaces. I believe that to be true as my Powerbook seems to run cooler when placed on a flat surface but what are the reasons for it? Is it because a pair of legs in pants act as an insulator for the heat and thus preventing it from escaping? Are there any other reasons?

Also, apologies if I posted this in the wrong forum.
 

FragTek

macrumors 6502
May 29, 2006
377
0
Fredericksburg, VA
Now that I think about it, it does sound like a feasible reason not to call it a laptop and rather a notebook. Though those terms are VERY loose and in most cases people use them interchangably.

I use my MBP on my lap all the time and i've never had a problem with it scorching my nuts.
 

MacAficionado

macrumors 6502
Oct 5, 2002
435
0
An awesome place
Here are some suggestions for working with your portable computer to address any concerns you may have with the operating temperature:

1. When using your portable computer, place it on a hard surface, such as a desktop or a tray. A hard surface allows air to flow under the computer to dissipate heat. Placing it on a soft surface such as a towel or pillow (or lap) is not recommended because it does not allow air to flow under the computer.
2. Under the Energy Saver pane in System Preferences, set the optimization to Better Energy Savings.
http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?artnum=30612
 

Sun Baked

macrumors G5
May 19, 2002
14,874
57
Don't you read the Apple warnings?

It is a portable computer, not a laptop machine.

If it is too hot for your lap, too bad, and caution it may burn your crotch.
 

coal

macrumors regular
Oct 22, 2005
135
0
Portland, OR
I'm sure that there is some truth to the surface properties have some effect in heat dissipation.

However, frankly it's a very lame strategy to dismiss complaints or questions with semantic games yet that seems to be the resolution Apple is willing to provide.

When my own call to tech support was met with those same words, I advised that the support should check the education page (where I had purchased my own).

In the requirements outlined for products purchased, Apple states:

"c. Laptop: One (1) may be purchased per academic year"

The tech support had no valid reply afterward.

I do agree completely that the terms "notebook" and "laptop" are used interchangeably in general usage and have no clear distinction.
 

FragTek

macrumors 6502
May 29, 2006
377
0
Fredericksburg, VA
EricNau said:
It might be doing more harm than you realize.
What I'm trying to say is that even when I'm using it on my lap it's nowhere near close enough to my balls to do any harm... I usually have it scooted out towards my knees, my twig and giggleberrys stay out of Apple's fertility-killing reach.
 

X5-452

macrumors 6502
Feb 16, 2006
472
28
Calgary, Canada
I think it's actually been scientifically proven that they can make males sterile if used for prolonged periods of time on your lap.
 

jimN

macrumors 6502a
Jun 23, 2005
934
10
London
X5-452 said:
I think it's actually been scientifically proven that they can make males sterile if used for prolonged periods of time on your lap.
If you are dumb enough to rest a baking hot computer on your genitalia for the required period of time then it is probably for the best if you don't reproduce - it's what Darwin would have wanted.
 

stoavio

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 8, 2006
46
0
Well I think Apple ought to be taking into consideration that many notebook owners use their notebooks on their laps and should be able to do so comfortably. The effects on fertility are known and assumed when one uses a notebook near their testicles, however, comfort should be a consideration. I know many people have loyalties to Apple and their products but I can see a potential customer not choosing an Apple notebook for that reason alone: that it's just too uncomfortable to use while placed in your lap. Many situations would require one to place their notebook in their lap.

Just to reiterate - the issue isn't about sterility. The risk of becoming steril is present no matter which laptop you're using. Most laptop manufacturer's are capable of producing a machine that can be used in ones lap and the fact that Apple's MBP's can't seems a tad lame.
 

California

macrumors 68040
Aug 21, 2004
3,766
41
This heat issue and "portable" rather than calling them"laptops" has been in force at Apple since 2001 and the introduction of the G4 Tibooks. I know, because I accidently left some plastic underneath the computer the first day I used it, and the plastic melted . I got the "portable' versus "laptop" lecture then -- though Apple was considerate enough to ask me if it burned through to the wood or not. And they explained airflow underneath the "portable" computer.
 

EricNau

Moderator emeritus
Apr 27, 2005
10,648
31
San Francisco, CA
stoavio said:
Just to reiterate - the issue isn't about sterility. The risk of becoming steril is present no matter which laptop you're using. Most laptop manufacturer's are capable of producing a machine that can be used in ones lap and the fact that Apple's MBP's can't seems a tad lame.
Apple is perfectly capable of producing a laptop that remains perfectly cool, but then you'd complain about it being too thick and weighing too much. :rolleyes:
 

chairguru22

macrumors 6502a
May 31, 2006
623
38
PA
FragTek said:
Now that I think about it, it does sound like a feasible reason not to call it a laptop and rather a notebook. Though those terms are VERY loose and in most cases people use them interchangably.

I use my MBP on my lap all the time and i've never had a problem with it scorching my nuts.
could it be that your MBP is huge and that most of it (the hot parts at least) arent even touching you... ever think of that? :p
 

drift1492

macrumors member
Feb 11, 2006
32
0
EricNau said:
Apple is perfectly capable of producing a laptop that remains perfectly cool, but then you'd complain about it being too thick and weighing too much. :rolleyes:
Ding Ding Ding. We have a winner.

It all comes down to this with portable computers....

Size, Speed, Heat...... Pick 2.
 

celebrian23

macrumors 65816
Mar 12, 2006
1,186
0
Under the sun
The mbp is thin. The heat comes with that thiness. Personally, I don't have testicles, and mine doesn't get that hot, so I'll take the thin factor over a thicker laptop. My mom uses a similarly spec'd dell, but it's so freaking heavy I can't keep it on my lap long either- my legs fall alseep under all that weight!
 

Counterfit

macrumors G3
Aug 20, 2003
8,201
0
sitting on your shoulder
swingerofbirch said:
If it is affecting fertility solely based on the heat it produces (and other factors such as radiation) then wouldn't fertility be affected more by other external heat sources than a laptop--such as a hot tub, heated seats, a sauna, or a hot day!?
Actually, yes. Sperm are best "manufactured" a few degrees below average body temperature. At least, according to some film I watched in biology class (holy **** that was 6 years ago! :eek: ) that was probably made in the early 80's, since they mentioned something about tight jeans being the current style for dudes.
 

idea_hamster

macrumors 65816
Jul 11, 2003
1,096
1
NYC, or thereabouts
Counterfit said:
Sperm are best "manufactured" a few degrees below average body temperature.
Exactly. And I know, because on Seinfeld, Kramer had to give up wearing briefs, so it must be true.

It's a full-time job keeping my junk cool. ;)
 

stoavio

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 8, 2006
46
0
swingerofbirch said:
If it is affecting fertility solely based on the heat it produces (and other factors such as radiation) then wouldn't fertility be affected more by other external heat sources than a laptop--such as a hot tub, heated seats, a sauna, or a hot day!?
Most definitely, which is why when a couple are trying to conceive, the doctor will recommend the guy not go into hot tubs, use laptops, etc, etc.
 

®îçhå®?

macrumors 68000
Mar 7, 2006
1,826
2
My mum always used her ibook on her lap and it developed a cyst (sorry if spelt wrong), but it required an operation and a week in hospital.
 

Mitthrawnuruodo

Moderator emeritus
Mar 10, 2004
13,802
172
Bergen, Norway
Yet another reason to use my favourite small Apple notebook accessory (that I've mentioned lots of times already): MAGASIN.

With one of those between your laptop and - well - lap, then you will hardly notice any heat, at all. And your 'Book gets to stand on an even surface, which is the recommended way of placing it while working (not only on your lap, but also when placed on your sofa or in bed or any other soft, uneven surfaces where it will heat up rapidly because you cut off the airflow underneath). :)
 

Mord

macrumors G4
Aug 24, 2003
10,090
21
UK
who the hell uses their laptop on their crotch? i use my macbook between my knees and thighs and it's not a problem, sure it gets hot but completely manageable.
 

FragTek

macrumors 6502
May 29, 2006
377
0
Fredericksburg, VA
chairguru22 said:
could it be that your MBP is huge and that most of it (the hot parts at least) arent even touching you... ever think of that? :p
I guess you didn't correctly comprehend my post that you quouted... As I stated before, I keep it pushed out to my knees because that's where it's most comfortable for me to use. Thus I don't get singed nut hairs.