How to run a Mac Pro with its cover off

maflynn

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Staff member
May 3, 2009
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33,532
Boston
They're using the magnets from a smart cover to get the computer to turn on. While that's kind of ingenious, I wonder how that will affect the cooling since the air flow is now altered without the case.
 

Cubemmal

macrumors 6502a
Jun 13, 2013
824
1
Would be great if someone made a glass enclosure for it...
The metal cover is part of the thermal design IMO. I think playing with it off is a bad idea.

In that video it looks like they're doing that in an Apple store, or a reseller.
 

ssls6

macrumors 6502a
Feb 7, 2013
558
153
Based on the thermal design, cover off would probably help cool it. All forced convection is from the backside of the PWBs, cover off would net you free convection from the front side of the PWBs.
 

flat five

macrumors 603
Feb 6, 2007
5,577
2,654
newyorkcity
Based on the thermal design, cover off would probably help cool it. All forced convection is from the backside of the PWBs, cover off would net you free convection from the front side of the PWBs.
the cpu is located pretty much dead center of the computer (sandwiched in between the core and the PSU).. i imagine if you operate with no shell, the fan will lose much of its effectiveness and the cpu will be in a vulnerable position at that point.

either way, this will be pretty easy to test and i'm sure we'll have definitive answers on the topic within a month.
 

Cubemmal

macrumors 6502a
Jun 13, 2013
824
1
Based on the thermal design, cover off would probably help cool it. All forced convection is from the backside of the PWBs, cover off would net you free convection from the front side of the PWBs.
No the opposite. Instead of pulling air from below and through all the components it comes in willy-nilly, so the parts aren't getting the airflow they need. Additionally the black aluminum radiates and conducts heat quite well as black body radiation, further cooling the core.
 

ssls6

macrumors 6502a
Feb 7, 2013
558
153
No the opposite. Instead of pulling air from below and through all the components it comes in willy-nilly, so the parts aren't getting the airflow they need. Additionally the black aluminum radiates and conducts heat quite well as black body radiation, further cooling the core.
I don't think so. The air flow path doesn't look to include the outer cover thus removing it would probably help cool the system. The only way you would be right is if the cover was also part of the shrouds used to direct air to the thermal central core. The way it slips off it doesn't look to be part of the shrouds.
 

Cubemmal

macrumors 6502a
Jun 13, 2013
824
1
I don't think so. The air flow path doesn't look to include the outer cover thus removing it would probably help cool the system. The only way you would be right is if the cover was also part of the shrouds used to direct air to the thermal central core. The way it slips off it doesn't look to be part of the shrouds.
I'm an engineer who works on similar types of systems. Trust me on this one, those engineers put the cover sensor in for a reason.
 

Spinland

macrumors 6502
Jul 16, 2011
320
1
Utica, NY, USA
I'm an engineer who works on similar types of systems. Trust me on this one, those engineers put the cover sensor in for a reason.
I agree with you. I know little of thermal dynamics beyond my undergrad days, but my impression of the nMP design is that of a wind tunnel. Such a device needs the constraint of the outer shell to induce the desired airflow in the desired direction.
 

ssls6

macrumors 6502a
Feb 7, 2013
558
153
It will be interesting when we see data both ways :) Then we can come back to this thread.
 

NT1440

macrumors G5
May 18, 2008
12,289
15,133
I agree with you. I know little of thermal dynamics beyond my undergrad days, but my impression of the nMP design is that of a wind tunnel. Such a device needs the constraint of the outer shell to induce the desired airflow in the desired direction.
I agree.

What I don't understand is that you don't need any training to see this, just look at the fan, it's clearly designed to form a wind tunnel effect from the entire diameter of the outer shell. Look at how the bottom air vents and the top fan line up, clearly the intention is to draw air both on the outside of the thermal core (the flat faces of the triangle) as well as through the center of the core itself.

Why people do these things is beyond me, I can't wait to see the threads popping up of people hemming an hawing that apple doesn't give users a choice to run their computer with the shell on or off :rolleyes:;)
 

Spinland

macrumors 6502
Jul 16, 2011
320
1
Utica, NY, USA
Why people do these things is beyond me...
Just to digress into personal mindspew: I also do not understand it. When my nMP arrives it will speedily be placed into my workbench and workflow where it will begin churning out content to generate income for me. I personally do not understand the idea that you'd want to tear apart such a machine and start trying to make it do stuff in a way it wasn't designed, or waste potentially-productive processing time.

I get there are enthusiasts and hobbyists and "modders" and all of that, I just don't understand the attraction. IT chores are, to me, wasted time and energy taken away from productive income-generating time--hell, I don't understand the desire to put games on this thing, much less muck around with the hardware configurations.

I do have hobbies, but they are as far removed from computers and IT stuff as can be. :cool:
 

fs454

macrumors 68000
Dec 7, 2007
1,686
1,207
Los Angeles / Boston
They've done this before with the Powermac G5 towers. If you pull the side off, the fans shoot up to a much higher and louder RPM to compensate for the lack of wind tunnel effect.
 

flat five

macrumors 603
Feb 6, 2007
5,577
2,654
newyorkcity
I get there are enthusiasts and hobbyists and "modders" and all of that, I just don't understand the attraction.
well, computers are new and continually evolving technology so there's that attraction but after that point, it's way easier to spend money on/argue about/tinker with hardware than it is to create good content on said hardware.
:p
 

NT1440

macrumors G5
May 18, 2008
12,289
15,133
They've done this before with the Powermac G5 towers. If you pull the side off, the fans shoot up to a much higher and louder RPM to compensate for the lack of wind tunnel effect.
I think that would be more of a temp sensor reading than being directly triggered by a magnet. Though I could be entirely wrong, it's been quite a while since I've even seen a G5 :eek:

Do you have any further info?
 

Spinland

macrumors 6502
Jul 16, 2011
320
1
Utica, NY, USA
well, computers are new and continually evolving technology so there's that attraction but after that point, it's way easier to spend money on/argue about/tinker with hardware than it is to create good content on said hardware.
:p
Heh. Yeah, you might be on to something there. Just another personal anecdote: the last Windows-based machine I ever bought was an Alienware "gaming" laptop that I hoped to put into service as a portable workstation. One of the "features" they were very proud of was the ability to change the keyboard backlighting colors, with the whole thing divided into zones so you could make a blooming rainbow out of the thing. I thought it one of the silliest ideas I'd seen in a long while.

In the end I dumped it because of Windows driver issues that helped me decide to become a full time Mac user, not because of the inherent silliness of some of the design features, but still.

Harrumph. And you kids get off my damned lawn, too. :mad:
 

chris.k

macrumors member
May 22, 2013
91
1
YSSY
What we need is some Transparent Aluminium.!

Keep the airflow working as-designed, and still show off the insides.!

scotty.jpg transparent-aluminum-on-screen.jpg

- CK.
 

deconstruct60

macrumors G3
Mar 10, 2009
8,897
1,752
All forced convection is from the backside of the PWBs, cover off would net you free convection from the front side of the PWBs.
The fan is pulling air over both sides of the boards with the cover on. There is nothing particularly "free" about the front/outer side of the boards.
More than likely probably actually reducing air flow over the front with the cover off ( unless there is some other external fan pointed at the Mac Pro in close proximity).
 
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