Macbook Pro Heat

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by nickos94, Mar 29, 2012.

  1. nickos94 macrumors newbie

    Dec 2, 2011
    So I currently have the early 2011 Macbook Pro, 2ghz and the HD6490 256mb graphics card.

    I have played some light games like Minecraft and TF2 on it, but it gets very hot (definitely when playing tf2).

    I was wondering if I had a Macbook pro with say a 6750m or 6770m and a slightly better processor like the 2.4ghz if that would run a little cooler since these games wouldn't be utilizing as much of these more powerful chips.

  2. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    That's normal for all Mac notebooks. The Intel processors used in Macs are designed to automatically shut down to prevent damage if they truly overheat. CPU Tjmax = 105C, GPU Tjmax = 100C on i3, i5, i7 processors. (Source: Intel) If you're not already using it, iStat Pro will give you accurate readings of your temps and fan speeds, among other things.

    Unless there is a rare defect in a Mac, most temps are well within the normal operating range, considering the workload being put on it. Websites with Flash content, games and other multimedia apps will put higher demand on the CPU/GPU, generating more heat. This is normal. If you're constantly putting high demands on your system, such as gaming or other multimedia tasks, expect temps to rise and fans to spin up accordingly. It's just your Mac doing its job to maintain temps within the normal range.

    It is also quite normal for your Mac to become extremely hot to the touch during intensive operations. The aluminum body transfers heat more effectively than other materials used in computer casings, so you will feel the heat more. This doesn't indicate that it's overheating and will not harm the computer to be hot to the touch.

    Your fans are always on when your Mac is on, spinning at a minimum of 2000 rpm (for MBPs) or 1800 rpm (for MBAs, MBs and minis). iMacs have 3 fans with minimum speeds in the 800-1200 range. They will spin faster as needed to keep temps at a safe level. If they're spinning up without increased heat, try resetting the SMC. (PRAM/NVRAM has nothing to do with these issues, so resetting it will not help.)

    The intake and exhaust vents are in the back of the computer near the hinge on all Mac notebooks. The iMac vent is a slot on the back near the top of the computer. Make sure the vents remain unblocked to allow your computer to perform at its best.

    Learn about the fans in your Mac
    Apple Portables: Operating temperature

    For Flash-related issues:
  3. nickos94 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 2, 2011
    I understand that, but what I'm after is if higher spec'd models will get as hot because it would be taking less load if the chips were more powerful
  4. squeakr macrumors 68000


    Apr 22, 2010
    The load on the processor would be the same (faster or slower processor). The processor speed only determines how many more cycles it can perform within a given time frame. Keep in mind that generally some of the higher performing chips also have a higher thermal wattage, therefor they consume more power and put out more heat (as they are operating faster within the same size chip package) while processing the same load, so it would change the time to complete the process by nano-seconds over the slower processor.
  5. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    Changing to a different CPU/GPU won't make any measurable difference.
  6. shardey macrumors 6502a


    Jan 28, 2010
    Is there any difference between the 6750m and the 6490m heat sinks? Curious to know.
  7. srxtr macrumors 6502a

    Jul 1, 2010
    Will Ivy bridge alleviate this heat "issue"? If so, I'm definitely waiting.
  8. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    The heat generated by a MBP has far more to do with the load placed on the CPU/GPU at any given point in time, regardless of the processor or chipset or heat sinks. Any difference in heat between models will be negligible, if any.
  9. thundersteele macrumors 68030

    Oct 19, 2011
    The more powerful processor will run the game at a higher frame rate, thus using the same amount of power and produce the same amount of heat as the slower CPU/GPU.

    You can get some relief if you play games that allow you to limit the frame rate. For those games, a more newer processor will generate less heat.
  10. thermodynamic Suspended


    May 3, 2009
    Same CPU, just clocked higher.

    Oh, these systems will not get to their highest speeds, even when plugged in...

    If you find the Early-2011 Macworld review, they saw that the 17" outperformed the 15" version despite having identical hardware. That's because the 17" version has a larger battery of the wattage necessary to run the CPU toward its fastest possible speed.

    But these 85W power supplies are so small that the new laptops tax them, which in turn makes them blisteringly hot to the touch.
    (has some more on throttling as well)

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