Magnet question..

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by LeahM, Apr 15, 2008.

  1. LeahM macrumors 6502a

    LeahM

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2008
    #1
    Are magnets still an arch enemy to all computers?

    Sorry I know its a dumb question but I know that you were NEVER supposed to bring a magnet near anything electronic. But then I read a thread where some people said that magnets don’t have any effect on their ipods. And then theres the fact that theres a magsafe charger with the Macbooks. So now I’m confused.
     
  2. merl1n macrumors 65816

    merl1n

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2008
    Location:
    New Jersey, USA
    #2
    Magnets are harmful to magnetic media (hard disks, tape, floppy disks) if they are close to the media.

    The magsafe connector is not that powerful and not directly near the internal disk.
     
  3. LeahM thread starter macrumors 6502a

    LeahM

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2008
    #3
    So say if I had a magnet, like a Kinex (sp?) near my MBP nothing would happen to it?

    I guess thats why I'm paranoid about my Mac because my nephew (who is the spawn of satan) plays with K'nex everywhere he goes, he keeps them in his pockets, but I want to know if they will damage the MBP.
     
  4. merl1n macrumors 65816

    merl1n

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2008
    Location:
    New Jersey, USA
    #4
    I'm not familiar with them. Unless these are super-strong magnets I wouldn't worry too much about it. If your nephew is around, just close your MBP until he goes away. :)
     
  5. Makosuke macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2001
    Location:
    The Cool Part of CA, USA
    #5
    There was, I believe, a thread where this was discussed in some detail a while back when Apple added the magnetic remote holder to the previous-style iMacs, but I can't seem to find it now.

    Basically, though, magnetic storage media (floppies and HDs), by definition, relies on small changes in magnetic field to store data, so they don't particularly like large magnetic fields--have a tendency to corrupt data stored. CRTs also dislike magnets, in that you can screw up the beam in a permanent way under some circumstances (I did this as a child once).

    Most everything else in a computer actually doesn't much care about a magnet. And in reality, even hard drives are relatively well shielded from magnetic fields, so they're nowhere near as sensitive as the image I had drilled into my head as a child. Plus magnetic field decreases as an inverse cube, which is to say that it falls off VERY quickly with distance.

    Bottom line being actually computers aren't THAT sensitive to magnets, it's just a whole lot easier to teach people "magnets + computers = bad" than "well, it's generally ok, but if you hold one too close to a drive or move it in a certain direction you could cause serious data corruption, particularly if it's not grounded..." etc.

    So be sensibly careful, but don't freak out about it; the hard drive is probably far enough inside and well enough shielded that even if you were to hold one of those magnetic blocks right against the case there it wouldn't affect it.
     
  6. Italchef macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2003
    Location:
    Maple, Ontario
    #6
    There are these new magnets that are a children's toy called Sizzlers. They're super strong magnets that clack together and make a sizzling sound. Apparently some of our friends have had their iPods completely erased due to the little buggers. As a result, they have been banned from all the houses in our group of friends. Watch out, they're deadly! lol

    Mick
     

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