Cutting slots in bottom of 2010 Macbook Pro...?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by olletsocmit, Mar 2, 2015.

  1. olletsocmit macrumors 6502

    olletsocmit

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    #1
    I have a 2010 Macbook Pro... It currently has 8gb of ram and a OWC 480gb 6G extreme SSD hard-drive. I noticed that the newer macbook pro's have 6 little vent cut-outs on the bottom of the case to allow for more airflow and to keep them colder ...which lets them run faster. I have a friend that owns a company and has CNC machines. I have seen reviews of things you put under your mac that have fans and it keeps it colder and the mac runs faster.... if i were to machine slots in the bottom of my macbook pro, would it run faster? I was thinking slots under both fans, the battery, and the SSD.... would this make a dif in the speed of my mac? has anyone run benchmarks on these kind of things?
     
  2. nirvanemesis macrumors member

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    Sep 26, 2014
    #2
    The unibody Macbook Pro:
    [​IMG]

    The retina Macbook Pro:
    [​IMG]

    As you can see, the retina models have a redesigned airflow, which is what the vents on the side are for. Machining slots on the unibody wouldn't have the same effect, and would probably cause more harm than good because of the extra dust that'll get in.
     
  3. duervo, Mar 2, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2015

    duervo macrumors 68000

    duervo

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    #3
    There have been a few people that have already done this to the unibody MBP and posted their results in this forum. Their results were positive. However, responses were mixed, ranging from "Nice" to "That's ridiculous." I lean towards the former, and plan to do something similar to mine once its AppleCare runs out this December. In the meantime, I've done what I could by re-applying the thermal paste, which has dropped the idle temps by an avg of 12c.

    I should add that no, putting vents into the bottom casing will not make it go faster. It might, depending on the circumstances, delay any throttling that might happen, but if the workload is large enough, no amount of vents will prevent throttling. The throttling is a design feature of the processor, it's not a flaw.
     
  4. olletsocmit thread starter macrumors 6502

    olletsocmit

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    #4
    Interesting. Mine is 5 years old now and i have never changed my thermal paste. have others done this as well? Can you please send me a tutorial that you thinks is good that you think will help me do it properly.
     
  5. olletsocmit thread starter macrumors 6502

    olletsocmit

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    #5
    I was thinking the following cuts. not sure yet, just a thought now:

    [​IMG]

    and the normal new side cuts, 3 per side
     
  6. duervo, Mar 4, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2015

    duervo macrumors 68000

    duervo

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    #6
    You can find a guide here (with pictures!) that steps you through the procedure to remove the logic board's heatsink. That needs to be done in order to gain access to the CPU and GPU that will be having their paste re-applied.

    Step 28 has a link to the guide on how to re-apply thermal paste.

    My personal tips for anyone doing this for the first time: It's not a race. Don't rush it. Take your time. Use the proper tools (don't try saving a few bucks by taking shortcuts with tool substitutions.)

    There was another thread on here recently where somebody had taken the bottom plate off their system and observed airflow patterns on the inside of it (dust patterns that clearly showed the airflow pattern). Those patterns suggested that placing the cuts near the sides of the panel would have the greatest effect. I'm not so sure that putting that spiral cut will provide a better benefit. It will probably make a diff, but I think the best effect will be from the side cuts. I would just do them on the side and test the results before going any further.

    But, before doing any cutting, do the thermal paste. You may just find that the results from that alone are good enough for you, and that you won't want to mod the bottom plate after all.

    Also, for me this goes without saying, but with increased air intake comes increased dust intake. So more frequent cleanings (most people never ever clean the inside anyway) will be necessary if you end up doing the bottom plate mod ... a can of air sprayed across the system with bottom plate off should be sufficient from time to time. No need for anything major like an ultrasonic bath.
     
  7. snaky69 macrumors 603

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    Mar 14, 2008
    #7
    It'll run cooler, yes.

    Faster? Not a chance.
     
  8. dmccloud macrumors 6502a

    dmccloud

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    #8
    One thing to consider here - the 2010 and current retina MBPs have significantly different internal components, and even the airflow inside is different. By cutting slots in that older machine, you not only alter the airflow from the intended design, but you also create more places where dust and other things can enter the case, potentially causing damage to components over the long run. Also, if you're wanting to do this to make your machine faster, forget it and look at getting either more RAM, a faster internal HDD, or both.
     
  9. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    #9
    Vents are not going to increase the performance of your Mac, unless you're getting to the point where it so hot that its been throttling to protect itself.

    As mentioned air flow is different and you may not get the results you expect. Apple designed the airflow to go a certain way on the newer MBPs, hence the vents on the bottom, there's no way they'd direct air going underneath the laptop on the older ones because there's no vents. That means cutting holes in your laptop will have a negligible impact on the temps.

    What temperatures are you dealing with right now?
     
  10. matty1551 macrumors 6502

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    Jul 7, 2009
    #10
    I drilled holes in the bottom of mine. It looks like utter crap but I'm ok with that. I bought a spare bottom cover on eBay.

    As far as heat, it may help a bit but I didn't see any drastic changes. I'm temped to go crazy and drill holes across the entire bottom case. If I didn't have a doomed 2011 version I wouldnt ever consider any of this though.
     
  11. snaky69 macrumors 603

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    Mar 14, 2008
    #11
    Apple just put out a repair program for it, your machine may be doomed, but at least it'll get repaired for free if it fails.
     
  12. matty1551 macrumors 6502

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    #12
    This is my preemptive thinking for after the program is over.
     
  13. olletsocmit thread starter macrumors 6502

    olletsocmit

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    #13

    Can u lease post the thread ur talking about that shows the airflow patterns

    ----------

    I read that thing on replacing the heat sink. Did u replace it or just take apart and clean and put new thermal paste on it? If there a guide to just do what u did
     
  14. duervo, Mar 7, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2015

    duervo macrumors 68000

    duervo

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    #14
    Here is that thread: http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1847497

    I cleaned the heat sink, the CPU, and the GPU, and then put new paste on, and then put the heatsink back on, and then put everything back together.

    In the iFixit guide I referenced earlier, one of the very last steps has a link to another guide on how to apply thermal paste. After reading it, I suggest you go watch lots and lots of YouTube videos on the same procedure. There are a lot of them out there (just stay away from the ones that have things like the presenter washing their logic board under a running bathroom faucet and then letting it air dry.)

    The most valuable tips I give anyone doing this for the time is to go slow, don't rush it. Use proper tools. Wash and dry your hands before you start (or use those blue nitrile gloves you can get at costco by the box,) and be careful whenever you are disconnecting and reconnecting any of the cables, as they can be very easy to break if you're not sure about which way they need to be pulled/lifted (again, if unsure, check out YouTube videos to see it done "live.") Stripped screws and broken cables and/or connectors are the most common story of a repair gone bad.
     

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