MackBook Pro 15 Retina Heat!

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by smcgil9899, Mar 1, 2013.

  1. smcgil9899 macrumors member

    Jun 17, 2008
    I'm downloading the game client for Guild Wars 2. My MacBook Pro 15 Retina is very hot above the keyboard and below the screen. The temps were 85-90 C degrees. I downloaded the SMC Fan Control app and the temps are 70-77 C degrees when I turned up the fan rpm to 5400. Is this normal? If I use the computer at 75 C will that damage my laptop?
  2. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    It's perfectly normal and no, you won't damage your Mac by using it. If you're not already doing so, use iStat Pro (free) or iStat Menus ($16) to get accurate readings of your temps, fan speeds, etc., rather than relying on your sense of touch or sound. A forum member has posted a copy of iStat Pro that has been "tweaked" to enhance compatibility with Mountain Lion. You can download it here.

    The Intel processors used in Macs are designed to automatically shut down to prevent damage if they truly overheat. CPU Tjmax = 105C (221F), GPU Tjmax = 100C (212F) on i3, i5, i7 processors. (Source: Intel)

    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 your fans are 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 (except the new MBP with retina display, which has intake vents along the sides at the bottom). 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. Queen6 macrumors 604


    Dec 11, 2008
    Land of the Unexpected
  4. smcgil9899 thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 17, 2008
    Thanks for the responses. Another question, my MBPr has the Speck hard case on it. Will this keep the heat from properly ventilating?
  5. Queen6 macrumors 604


    Dec 11, 2008
    Land of the Unexpected
    No the cooling is primarily internalised, and the case is designed to allow the computer to exhaust hot air, any difference will be negligible.
  6. willgreene99 macrumors regular


    Dec 16, 2010
    It's a bit comforting to know that the heat is normal. I run a dozen apps including VMware fusion 5.0 and 2 win7 vm's which drive the tempts to remain between 85 and 95 for the whole day while I'm working on them. The keyboard is fine as are the palm rests. The heat is focused along the exhaust vents above the function keys.

    It's just that switching between the Air and this rMBP gives a different heat experience.
  7. anarti macrumors regular

    Nov 28, 2012
    when you said 85-95 you meant CPU temp?

    It is quite high.

    VIrtual Machines can drive cpu up a bit, but when not doing anything resources hungry, I think this is somehow too hot.

    When I got openede Win 8 in Parallels 8, cpu goes up to 50-60 degress, but I have external display attached as well.

    Even when exporting jpgs in Lightorom, my CPU on my rMBP never went above 75C, and that's with all cores at 100%.

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