MacBook SMC Firmware Update

Discussion in ' News Discussion' started by MacBytes, Aug 17, 2006.

  1. MacBytes macrumors bot

    Jul 5, 2003
  2. Some_Big_Spoon macrumors 6502a


    Jun 17, 2003
    New York, NY
    One comment I saw said that machines were running significantly cooler. I applied it and can't really tell yet honestly.

    Maybe I'll max it out using PS or something, but any improvment to the fan action is much needed.
  3. whenpaulsparks macrumors regular

    Jun 5, 2004
    Tallahassee, FL
    no more moo so far!!! hooray apple! and it does seem to be running a little bit cooler, but that might just be a false perception.
  4. Stridder44 macrumors 68040


    Mar 24, 2003
    It's probably safe to say if I were to buy a MacBook online from the Apple store right now this firmware update would already be installed on it?
  5. firsttube macrumors regular


    Apr 14, 2004
    I wouldn't say that. It's possible, but less likely if your order one of the preconfigured notebooks. If you customize it to order, it may be a bit more likely.


    Oh yeah, my macbook is running much cooler now, and the fan is on more often, but it's rather quiet. Good update.
  6. MRU macrumors demi-god


    Aug 23, 2005
    My black macbook would feck up when there was 2gb of memory in it. It would go haywire and crash and burn repetedly.

    Since the update so far so good.
  7. amacgenius macrumors 68000


    Aug 3, 2005
    Buffalo, NY
    It actually cooled my MacBook down by about 20º, seeing as I had no moo I can't really testify to that.
  8. FocusAndEarnIt macrumors 601


    May 29, 2005
    Not the case here.

    46º when it was 75º before... running the same apps every time.
  9. MRU macrumors demi-god


    Aug 23, 2005
    I think you misunderstood me

    What i was saying was that my macbook did not like 2 x 1gb - it would go laggy and crash prior to the update, since the update it has worked without hickups, so i'm happy it solved that weird problem that a few users were experiencing. (never had the problem in my previous white macbook).

    Yep it's running cooler now too.
  10. mainstreetmark macrumors 68020


    May 7, 2003
    Saint Augustine, FL
    What are you guys using for temp there? A menulet or an app like Hardware (Something)
  11. aristobrat macrumors G5

    Oct 14, 2005
    Google for CoreDuoTemp. This utility will install a kernel extension that lets it (and other utilities, like the iStat widget) monitor the CPU temperature.

    My MacBook has gone from the low 60's to the high 40's/low 50's and I can't hear the fans unless I put my head on the keyboard. It's so much cooler.

  12. skwoytek macrumors 6502a

    Feb 15, 2005
    My Results

    A comment at MacWorld says the SMC update cools the temp by 12-24˚C. This would be a 21.6 - 43.2˚F drop. I did not check the CPU temp before I installed the update to provide a CPU temp difference.

    I can say the MacBook bottom is considerably cooler and can now sit on my lap. Before the update it was unbearable. We had to use a lap desk or pillow to shield ourselves from the heat.

    I didn't check my CPU temp, but you can. An Intel CPU Temp Widget is available. I'd like to see some results if anyone wants to post them.

    My current CPU temp is 51˚C after about an hour of Internet use. My research shows mid-60s (˚C) was standard previous MacBook idle. This falls in the 12-24˚C drop.

    I ran another test under a full load (decoding and resizing 3 HD clips on a loop in QuickTime for 10 minutes) for kicks. The CPU operated around 98% and the CPU temp was around 80˚C. This is what previous tests had shown according to research.

    The temp dropped from 80˚C to 60˚C within 20 seconds and returned to the low-50s (˚C) within 60 seconds.

    Honestly, I did not expect the update to change full load CPU temps as a fan running at full force is a fan running at full force.

    The update is also reported to fix the "mooing" which I have never experienced.
  13. shadowfax macrumors 603


    Sep 6, 2002
    Houston, TX
    When I first got my black MacBook, I noticed that it had a lot of heat problems--the CPU would shoot up to 60?C in 15 minutes or so if I just turned it on and left it to sit there (even with no apps running). This really bothered me, and I figured to try my hand with Arctic Silver.

    That seemed to help, at first. It much improves the rate at which heat transfers from the CPU to the heat sink, which does mean that when the machine is cold, and the CPU heats up, the heat conducts to the heat sink fastest, triggering the fan sooner, and... slowing down the rate at which the rest of the machine gets to 60-65?C. Wow. Same problem, though, of course... it just starts burning your legs a little slower.

    This update, I must say, is also strange. It's much, much better, don't get me wrong--It turned my laptop from a "notebook" that I could only use at a desk for any long length of time to a true laptop. That's wonderful! I feel like I'm getting my money's worth now (not that I paid for it, it's a gov't laptop).

    The thing is, though, it seems to act up when the machine is still cold and the CPU heats up. I think that this trips back to a design flaw--look at this:
    here, the CPU is on the bottom left of the copper heat sink runner. Then there's another chip, maybe the system controller (I don't know the terminology there, sorry), the next chip up along the runner. Now, having removed the heat sink, it looks like the system polls the temperature not on the CPU itself, but on the sensors that are plugged into the heat sink. those sensors are actually placed under the copper runner right between the radiator segment on the right and the chip cover on the left side--quite a ways away from the CPU, the real heat generator of the box.

    what that means in practice is that when the machine itself is cool, the CPU heats up a lot more before the fan cues on, and then before very long in that scenario, it seems like the problem of allowing it to get that much hotter before kicking in means the fan may go into high gear, especially if you're running something in rosetta or another CPU-intensive task right from a cold start.

    Later, when the machine warms up more, the sensor becomes much more accurate to when it needs to come on, and the fan is on real low-speed more constantly, with the operating temp in the 40s or 50s, depending on the usage and who knows what else.

    But that's just my observation--that the lack of close proximity between the heat generator (the CPU) and the fan's heat sensor mean that the behavior of the fan may be very varied at any given CPU temperature/activity, depending on how warm the ambient temperature (case temperature) is.

    In any event, I don't care about this that much--I am very grateful that I have a laptop for the first time since I got this MB, and also that I feel comfortable leaving it on all day on my desk--it's only a bit warm when I come back to it, rather than burning hot as it used to be. Thanks, Apple.
  14. MIDI_EVIL macrumors 65816


    Jan 23, 2006
    Wow, my girlfriend's MacBook is around 25 degrees C with iTunes and Safari open.

    This is brilliant!

  15. rav77 macrumors newbie

    Oct 16, 2006
    macbook low temperature

    I installed CoreDuoTemp and it shows that my macbook is 9-15 deg. C. But the back side of the macbook remains worm. I just do not believe to the meter readings. If I load processor I realize that sometimes the fans kick out for a short wile. So I conclude that temperature sensor work well, but the readings might be misleading. Does somebody else have the same problem?
  16. aristobrat macrumors G5

    Oct 14, 2005
    Yeah, there's been a few posts about the temp reading be wrong, esp after it wakes up from sleep.
  17. rav77 macrumors newbie

    Oct 16, 2006
    low temperature reading

    When I installed “Temperature Monitor” program I realized that there are a lot of temperature sensors installed inside which I can read out:

    Sensor ID Report

    Created 11/11/06 for computer local computer.

    bresink.dts.0: CPU Core 1 (local computer)
    bresink.dts.1: CPU Core 2 (local computer)
    smart.ST96812AS.5PJ3GPM5: SMART Disk ST96812AS (5PJ3GPM5) (local computer)
    smc.temperature.CV3: Enclosure Bottomside (local computer)
    smc.temperature.DF3: CPU A Temperature Diode (local computer)
    smc.temperature.NR3: Memory Riser Card A Position 1 (local computer)
    smc.temperature.OR3: Northbridge Position 1 (local computer)
    smc.temperature.OR4: Northbridge Position 2 (local computer)
    smc.temperature.iJ3: Main Heatsink 1 (local computer)
    smc.temperature.iJ4: Main Heatsink 2 (local computer)

    My CoreDuoTemp and Istat nano widget do monitor only one temperature. With Temperature Monitor I monitor average 50 – 55 C (CPU A temperature diode) and by other two it is around 30 C (I do not know which sensor do they monitor).
  18. rav77 macrumors newbie

    Oct 16, 2006
    Core Duo Temp

    Recently I realized that CoreDuoTemp and Istat show temperature of the processor during startup or wakeup. It does not update it properly afterwards.

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