Fans Never Spin Up on MBP 13" Mid-2009

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by mac1984user, Dec 2, 2010.

  1. mac1984user macrumors 6502a

    mac1984user

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2009
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    #1
    Hello there,

    I was noticing a lot of slow-down while playing computer games on my MBP. My computer far exceeds the minimum requirements for everything, so I reckoned it must have been something other than a slow processor (2.53 GHz Core 2 Duo), low ram (4 GB) or a completely inadequate graphics card (Nvidia 9400M). The games range from 'Day of Defeat: Source' to the 8 year-old 'Return to Castle Wolfenstein'.

    After a bit of research, I came to realise that my exhaust fan is never speeding up past 2005 RPM no matter WHAT the load on the CPU is. To test this, I downloaded smcFanControl and ran CPUTest. As the CPU went from 50*C to 95*C, there was hardly any change in the fan's speed. The variation went between 1995 and 2005 RPM. In order to keep the computer relatively cool when playing games or doing anything that is CPU-heavy, I have to MANUALLY increase the fan's RPM in smcFanControl. I find that setting the fans to the maximum, 6000 RPM, keeps the computer cool enough to process these games. This progam works wonders and I've not had any slow-down in games as a result. HOWEVER, I am worried that there might be something wrong with my Mac.

    Why does it not automatically increase fan speed when reaching higher temperatures? I've even reset my SMC (SHIFT-CONTROL-OPTION-Power) on start-up just to be sure I've tried everything. Any suggestions as to why my fan seems stuck at 2000 RPM? Has anyone else experienced this?

    Thanks!

    MBP, 13-inch, 4GB RAM, 2.53 GHz
     
  2. dmk1974 macrumors 68000

    dmk1974

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2008
    #2
    I have a 2009 13" MBP as well, but the slower 2.26 MHz version. I notice the exact same thing too. Stays pretty much right on 2000 rpm and never changes even though it feels really hot (my 2010 13" MBP does not get barely warm at all even under load).

    I've also used smcFanControl on the 2009 model, but just kept it set at a constant 3500 RPM which does help. I too wish there was some sort of variable control that can be set based on the temperature.
     
  3. tjb1 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2010
    Location:
    Pennsylvania, USA
    #3
    Mine usually doesnt start to increase until 200F where it usually bumps up to ~4000. I think when doing something that was processor intensive that it knew it ran up to ~6000 because it knew it was going to stay intense.
     
  4. Mabyboi macrumors 6502

    Mabyboi

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2010
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    #4
    Mine never spin up unless i really really stress the computer and its almost burning... Although nothing ever gets damaged... weird eh?
     
  5. mac1984user thread starter macrumors 6502a

    mac1984user

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2009
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    #5
    The only solution I can figure is to use smcFanControl to manually increase the fan speed when I think my computer is going to heat up. It's a bit of a pain, but it seems to help. It's strange that games actually slow down as a result of my fans not running as fast as they should. The fan is so crucial in cooling the processor. The difference between running Left 4 Dead 2 with the exhaust fan at 2000 RPM vs. 6000 RPM is like night and day. At least I know what the issue is. It just sucks that the mid-2009 MacBook Pro is not smart enough to spin the fan up when it needs to, unlike any other Mac (or PC) I've ever owned.
     
  6. Stvwndr219 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2009
    #6
    I guess it doesn't help matters either that the 13" macbook pro only has one fan in it... Have you tried talking to apple support about this? I'm sure they would know more than we do...
     

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