Macbook Pro under high CPU usage nearly 24/7 for a month

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by liquidsteel, Nov 23, 2012.

  1. liquidsteel macrumors newbie

    Nov 23, 2012
    So, theoretically, if I were to put my CPU under high strain nearly 24/7 for a month, would I have any consequences to the longevity of my laptop?

    Put it this way, my fan is running at 5000RPM and my temps are hovering about 82~ Celcius. Will I have any problems in the long-term if I choose to run my computer plugged in like this for a month?

    Thanks in advance.
  2. frankq macrumors newbie

    Nov 23, 2012
    Mine has been going for a few weeks between games and benches so usage is pretty high I do have my computer docked and stuffed in a window for cooling. No problems and IMO these computers will last for a very long time no matter what you do, but if your going to run anything at close to 100 percent for extended periods you will shorten the lifespan.

    Attached Files:

  3. liquidsteel thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 23, 2012
    By how much though? I'm currently making money through keeping my computer online 24/7 so if it's going to last more than a month, it'd be worth it. I know for a fact it'll last for a month (duh lol) but I wanted to know exactly how much I'm reducing my MBP's lifespan by.

    I'm running with two processes at 95-105% (they vary) CPU usage. The total CPU usage seems to be at 70% for each core. So 280% out of 400%? I don't know how this works.

    Also, the fans are running at 4800-5800 RPM. It varies. Sometimes it goes to 2000 and sometimes it's at max (6200).

    Anyways, thanks. :)

    I'd appreciate if someone could help me out with the question I've bolded.
  4. stridemat Moderator


    Staff Member

    Apr 2, 2008
    The amount of time that it may reduce the lifespan of your Mac is unquantifiable.
  5. dannylillhtc macrumors member


    Nov 23, 2012
    uk somewhere
    there is no way to give you an exact figure. running it at 100% 24/7 will shorten its lifespan, thats a given. could be days, weeks, years who knows ?
  6. Queen6, Nov 23, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2012

    Queen6 macrumors 603


    Dec 11, 2008
    Putting out the fire with gasoline...
    More to the point are you making enough money to replace the MBP? If your just making a few $ on the side i would knock it off, as nobody here can quantify or answer your question with your current perimeters. If the load and temperature is stable the effect should not be overly detrimental from an electronics point of view, however if the temperature and load are continuously cycling the clock is running....

    If you need to run a computer 24/7/365 under varying load, an expensive Mac portable is probably one of the poorer choices.

    BTW i have an Early 2008 15" MBP with over 30K hours uptime, equally the load is fairly continuous and it`s only has a residual value of $500. The killer is thermal shock induced by frequent and high temperature cycling at a constant temperature the system may well run for literally decades. Some of my replies regarding temperature and Mac`s overheating might be of interest to you, as stabilising operating temperature is very much key to longevity.
  7. cyclotron451 macrumors regular


    Mar 16, 2005
    Sounds like you might be lucky

    My early 2011 Quad Core i7 2.2GHz MacBookPro7,1 worked for Friday afternoon, all day Saturday, then at 17:21pm on the Sunday afternoon. it stopped!

    I was running a high CPU (8 thread) and occasionally high GPU computing application, with a long queue of work packages. It was perfect when I launched the app on Friday afternoon. My MBP was specially raised 4cm horizontally off the desk on two solid perspex risers, allowing maximum ventilation. I had keyboard clamshell open. I was running Windows 7 64 bits with the latest drivers for my maxed out BTO GPU card.

    My MBP melted the GPU after around 48 hours, ambient temperature was nominal 20 to 22 degC office environment, though the A/C may have been smart-building'd 'OFF' over the weekend.

    I'm now having the motherboard replaced as an out of warranty repair, cost is €496.20, which is less than I thought.

    My points of view are:
    • you might get away with pure CPU work, if you're lucky, (i7 CPU is very protected by intel)
    • I'd avoid combined max CPU + GPU processing = shared single heatsink (and I don't know how protected the GPU is - or in my case wasn't)
    • I will avoid Windows stress use of the MBP, restricting it to Mac OS X, (maybe Windows doesn't correctly throttle down the system or respond to a stuck element/runaway process/memory leak)
    • I am very annoyed by having a melted MacBookPro - I did not expect it to overheat to destruction - and 48 hours is amazingly short
    • I may have just been unlucky on the quality control of the heatsink CPU/GPU assembly
    • I was able to recover all data via Thunderbolt target disk
    • I bought a MacPro which doesn't know the meaning of 'hot'
    • and for home use I dropped the idea of a Quad i7 iMac and bought a core i5 dual 2.5GHz Mac mini - I'm not going to have my home computer melting!
  8. Queen6 macrumors 603


    Dec 11, 2008
    Putting out the fire with gasoline...
    Indeed a lot of valid points; for me your system was working in less than optimal conditions, Windows versus OS X and i believe that is the key, under OS X the system would be far more protected. Personally i have always been of the mind that the "right to for the right job" a Mac can run Windows, however a dedicated Windows desktop will always offer far greater performance. As for the Mac Pro i will wait on Apple`s response for 2013...
  9. liquidsteel thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 23, 2012
    Does this mean if I kept the temperature constant (right now it's running at around 70c~ with 4100 RPM as I've figured out a way to lessen the load) that I wouldn't be affected too much?

    @ Everyone else, I've read all your replies and taken them into consideration. Thank you. I think I'll stop what I'm doing but I would like a few more answers to fully illuminate my dilemma. :)


    How was your CPU load/temperature/fan speed behaving before this happened? Was it much higher than 70%/82C/5200 respectively?
  10. AirThis macrumors 6502a

    Mar 6, 2012
    I sometimes need to run renders/animations overnight. Without any tweaking, my rMBP goes up to 105C, the fans progressively kick in, and then temps stabilize at 102C for the remainder of the time. I'm pretty sure that for occasional usage this poses no problem whatsoever, but I didn't want to continue doing this in the long run.

    I've found a two part solution to this problem:

    a) I run a cpu limiter script:

    b) I use Ultrafan at 80% of the max fan speed during the renders.

    By doing this, my system runs the renders/animation under 80C, which I feel is much safer for the computer overall. My situation is of course different to yours as I don't run my rMBP 24/7.

    In order to get an answer to your question (regarding CPU temps vs lifespan), I suggest that you post it on Intel's forum as there are many similar questions. It's a bit difficult to find the processor forum, so here's the link:
  11. Queen6, Nov 24, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2012

    Queen6 macrumors 603


    Dec 11, 2008
    Putting out the fire with gasoline...
    Yes there will be little to no impact, another factor is how active your HD is. When my Early 2008 15" was primary the loads your describing are similar percentage of CPU and temp, and it has rarely been shutdown since i bought it new in 08, so there is no reason to suppose that your system is not capable of doing the same. I have always elevated it and run SMC Fan Control now superseded by UltreFan.

    Apples cooling algorithm defaults to quietness over cooling efficiency and this is fine under normal conditions. By using UltraFan you can take control and reverse the situation. My Retina will too reach CPU temps of 104C if left unrestrained with UltraFan it will struggle to reach 80C. Under Apple`s cooling regime by the time the fans spool up the temperature is already north of 90C and the system thermally saturated, so naturally the work of the cooling system is now compounded. Under UltraFan i preset the fans to spool up at 65C this way the hardware does not become saturated by the heat generated by CPU/GPU.

    The old adage always applies; it`s easier to keep a system cool, than cool-down an already hot machine. This being said it`s not strictly necessary, for average usage.
  12. andymac2210 macrumors regular

    Jul 18, 2011
    Just do it, if it breaks then take it in for warranty repair.

    It won't break though, I ran my 2010 MBP for 2 years, almost 24/7 and when I was actually using it, the temperature was 80-90* the whole time.

    Still works fine.
  13. gorskiegangsta macrumors 65816


    Mar 13, 2011
    Brooklyn, NY
    Modern electronic chips are designed to withstand years upon years of stress. Also, 82C is well below the damaging temperature range (which is over 120C). One thing though: if you're running a lot of stress inducing tasks, make sure to keep the device on a hard, flat surface so that the cooling system is not obstructed.

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