Fan noise - where's it coming from?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Demigod Mac, Feb 27, 2012.

  1. Demigod Mac macrumors 6502a

    Apr 25, 2008
    Mac Pro 5,1 here (hex-core) with a Radeon 5870.

    Several times a day I hear this noise coming from one of its fans. It's a faint, putter-putter-putter noise that rises and fades away usually within the space of 30 seconds. It occurs randomly throughout the day. There are no other symptoms, but I'd rather not leave this to chance or have it be a precursor to a bigger problem, and I want my Mac functioning 100% perfectly.

    It's hard to tell which fan is causing the sound. I'm going to try using smcFanControl to narrow it down - when the issue occurs I'll set one of the fans on maximum RPM for a second to see if it temporarily stops it. Still it's difficult to determine... has anyone experienced this before and knows what's up?

    I have a 3 year AppleCare plan, but if I could tell the techs which fan is doing it, that might reduce the time required to have it in the shop.
  2. MrCheeto macrumors 68030


    Nov 2, 2008
    Can you upload audio or video of this occurrence?
  3. derbothaus macrumors 601


    Jul 17, 2010
    Never heard a putter-putter noise form my Pro. Every so often at boot I will get a whining spin up on the intake fan that rises and then falls in under 30 secs. It does not usually happen again unless my Mac is really dirty inside. So in order I get Boot - PCI expansion and GPU card spin up for under 10 secs. - Then Intake fan spins up for that 30 sec rise and fall, then silence. No other sounds except HDD hum.
  4. Demigod Mac thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Apr 25, 2008
    Can try to get a recording when I catch it. It's not a reproducible issue though, very random.

    I should add that I do regularly use an air can to blow the dust out of my Pro, including the fans.

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