MBP 2011 w/ Mavericks Heat

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by undesign, Dec 5, 2013.

  1. undesign macrumors regular

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    Nov 4, 2013
    #1
    So I just did a FRESH install of OS X 10.9 and installed only a few apps (chrome, VLC 1.1.12, iStatMenus and Vox). I'm running an early 15" 2011 MBP @ 2.3ghz with a 6750M gpu.

    I've got 4 tabs open in Chrome and am playing a 720p MKV file via VLC and my temperatures are between 70-80C.

    Is this NORMAL? I just had my logicboard replaced due to the GPU frying on me and cost me a good chunk of money. I'm trying to keep the MPB as cool as possible but these temps in 'normal' usage are pretty damn high.

    My idle temperatures in Snow Leopard were 33-34C at boot with some applications running in the background (rightzoom, istatmenus, fontexplorer, xtrafinder, bettertouch tools and trim enabler).
     
  2. Doward macrumors 6502a

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    Feb 21, 2013
    #2
    Just tested mine - 64C under similar load (playing a 1080p MKV in VLC though)

    *edit*

    I have the 2.5Ghz BTO with the 6770M. I have lapped my heatsink and done the Arctic Silver heatsink paste:
     
  3. undesign thread starter macrumors regular

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    #3
    Hmmm... I'd prefer those temps. I remember playing a 702p MKV file with VLC in ML 10.8.5 and my temps were hovering between 40-50C.

    Right now with almost nothing in the background my idle temps are at 38-40C with the fan bumped up to 2500RPM from a default of 2000. I was getting around 33C under Snow Leopard. This is really odd.

    ----------

    LMAO!

    I was watching your youtube videos on the thermal paste application a week ago! Great video btw!
     
  4. Doward macrumors 6502a

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    #4
    Arg, I'm an idiot - I forgot that I had my Win7 VM up (Vbox 4.3.4) running Visual Studio in the background idling.

    So yeah, 2000 rpm, 64C doing what you are doing with a VM running in the background. I'm happy with that :)

    *edit* with the VM up and all but VLC running, bumping my fans to 2484 rpm each gives me a stable temp of 58C just letting things idle.
     
  5. undesign, Dec 5, 2013
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2013

    undesign thread starter macrumors regular

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    #5
    Think I should reapply the thermal paste myself? I've got a feeling the guys at the Apple store may have put in gobs of it.

    Right now I'm at 55-67C playing a 480p flash video stream in chrome and browsing forums in another window. These temps kind of bother me.
     
  6. Doward macrumors 6502a

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    #6
    I would - and did. I love the temps my MBP runs now!
     
  7. undesign thread starter macrumors regular

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    #7
    I'm gonna have to watch your tutorial in full at a later date and probably have the ifixit steps on the side as well.

    I'll see how temps are under 10.8.5, i'll install it later for comparison. I'm sticking to whichever OS doesnt create as much heat.

    Thanks!
     
  8. undesign thread starter macrumors regular

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    #8
    I forgot I had an installation of 10.8.5 on an external drive as a backup OS for emergency. I'm doing the SAME stuff: browsing forums and watching 480p streaming (basketball game) and my temperatures are hovering around the same: 60-65. They fluctuate though.

    Looks like a reflow is absolutely necessary... these temperatures SUCK.
     
  9. Swampus macrumors 6502

    Swampus

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    #9
    I'm at 39C at the moment with a room temperature of 72F. I just started a 480p Flash stream and will update in a few minutes, but those temps would bother me too--Especially after having your logic board replaced.

    I'm hoping to get some endoscopic images soon of how and where these joints are failing. The best information that I've seen so far was posted yesterday on Apple's forums. An owner experiencing the same problem opted to have a new GPU installed by a reputable repair shop in Germany. They actually took the time to do a pre-repair analysis with their imaging equipment and concluded that a cooling system failure (and yes, they did point to the thermal interface material as one of the variables) caused the existing CTE mismatch to become a destructive force. Keep in mind that this is a sample size of one and we haven't even seen the imaging on which they based this assessment, but it's still the best that we have so far.

    I'm sure you're aware that some folks with this problem have had their logic boards replaced three or four times. It makes me wonder if the heatsink could be a variable in some of these cases. If I were in your shoes, I would want to redo the thermal compound and take some extra steps to verify that you're getting a good meeting at both sections of the heatsink against their corresponding dies. I did mine the first week that I owned it and it looked really really good. Yes, a lot was used, but the extra got squished out the sides and it was obvious that there was good flat contact between all surfaces. I used my favorite low viscosity compound and got the modest improvement that most others report. But I don't think this is always true. I'm not sure that these heatsinks are always fitting that well. If there are actual gaps in some cases, that could be problematic.

    Thermal compound isn't really meant to play that role. It's meant to fill the micro-imperfections between two surfaces, not to play the role of thermal conduit on its own. In this graph, you can see the dramatic difference that only 1/20th of one millimeter can make in the thermal resistance of some popular compounds.

    [​IMG]

    Source: United States Department of Energy, National Renewable Energy Labratory (NREL 2009 study, download pdf).

    Okay, after 10 minutes of the 480p Flash video, my temps have skyrocketed to 46C. (I should probably also mention that I'm on Firefox and I'm locked on the HD3000. I think I've seen mention that Chrome has a tendency to call on the discreet for silly stuff like Flash video?)

    Don't get me wrong, I do push mine hard very frequently and I'm not afraid of 85C when I'm at full bore on all cores, but I'd be really annoyed to see anything higher than 50C when I'm only at 6% CPU!

    If you're planning to redo your thermal compound, let me include this since it's missing from most of the popular tutorials:

    [​IMG]

    When reinstalling the heatsink, the screws should be reinstalled in this order and tightened down half way. Then, following the same pattern, they should be tightened down the rest of the way.
     

    Attached Files:

  10. Swampus macrumors 6502

    Swampus

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    #10
    I assume that was a typo? There is no reason to believe that a reflow would be helpful in any way in this case.
     
  11. Swampus macrumors 6502

    Swampus

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    #11
    Those are some nice videos. I didn't lap mine. I've never actually lapped anything, but I probably should have and I can certainly see why you chose to. The surface is not very impressive upon close inspection.
     
  12. undesign, Dec 5, 2013
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2013

    undesign thread starter macrumors regular

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    #12
    Did another test, ran ONLY Firefox with a 480p video off youtube (played mp4 file, not flash) and my temperatures maxed out at 75C, heres a screenshot:

    [​IMG]

    This is effing BRUTAL.
     
  13. Swampus macrumors 6502

    Swampus

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    #13
    It's hard to tell what your CPU load is from that little graph in your menu bar, but maybe worth a minute to check the details in Activity Monitor to see if anything is misbehaving?

    Beyond that, I agree with you that this isn't normal.
     
  14. Doward macrumors 6502a

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    #14
    Also, what fan speeds are you seeing at that point?
     
  15. undesign thread starter macrumors regular

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    #15
    In that situation, the fans we're still at the minimum (2,000 RPM). I never hear them ramp up until I hit 80C or more.
     
  16. Doward macrumors 6502a

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    #16
    Ok, just to be clear, that is how Apple's thermal profile system is designed. Apple intends that if you do something quick, that the thermal energy will be absorbed into the heatsink and slowly dissipated via low speed fans. It's not until you are running a heavy load for more than a few moments before the fans kick up.

    This is why lapping the heatsink and re-applying proper heatsink compound means I can do a lot more without the fans having to ramp up - I've significantly improved the 'path' from the CPU/GPU to the heatsink.

    As an example, running Virtualbox means I'm running the dGPU (HD6770M in my case) - my temps hover between 60-65C while working in the VM, fans stay @ 2000 rpm, so it's near-silent.

    It's a blissful thing :) The fans come up if I start compiling, however ;)
     
  17. undesign thread starter macrumors regular

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    Nov 4, 2013
    #17
    Hmm. I've got three tabs open in Chrome (all browsing forums), Transmission is downloading a torrent to a secondary drive and running VLC playing a 720p MKV file. I've got my fans set to maximum and the temperature is at 56C.

    I acutally went out today and bought some Arctic Silver 5 thermal paste, I'll be doing a reflow most likely tomorrow.
     
  18. NocturnalJazz, Dec 7, 2013
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2013

    NocturnalJazz macrumors regular

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    #18
    MBP 2011 w/ Mavericks Heat

    Dirk Nowitzki
    2011 MVP Mavericks vs. Heat
     
  19. Swampus macrumors 6502

    Swampus

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    #19
    A reflow implies that you're planning to melt the solder. There would be no reason for that from what you have posted. I assume that you just mean that you're planning to redo the thermal compound?

    Be careful with the AS-5. I believe they instruct to use the "spread" method on lidless packages? If things aren't fitting well, that could be problematic.

    Also, take some "before" pictures if you don't mind. Let's see what the thermal compound looks like after one of these logic board replacements.
     
  20. undesign thread starter macrumors regular

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    #20
    Sorry, I did mean redoing the thermal compound, not melting any soldering.

    The Arctic Silver 5 i got is exactly this one:

    [​IMG]
     
  21. matthewadams macrumors regular

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    Dec 6, 2012
    #21
    Hey there,

    let me chime in with some temperature stats (since I have owned two 2011 MBPs, both BTO, one 2.0 and one 2.2 with both different AMD chips).

    I redid the thermal compound as well months ago on the 2.2 ghz one, since I was worried about the GPU issue in conjunction with temperatures and since the laptop was almost always attached to an external screen.
    Idle temps were usually around 50-55° (stated the laptop was running for hours and the chassis was warmed up, else it'd be in the 40s for the hours prior).

    Another thing is: if you max out your CPU temps are most likely to hit the 90s anyway, no matter what thermal paste or fan settings you are using.
    This is due to Intels "Hyperboost" (or whatever its called). The CPU will autothrottle itself when it hits the 90s, reducing the overall power consumption (and in result the TDP).
    There are 2 nice tools out there to monitor this behaviour. First off "iStats Pro", which shows you the power consumption of the GPU and CPU in Watts.
    Second the nice OSX terminal command "pmset".
    By using
    and maxing out your CPU, you can see OSX's internal CPU throttle kick in at some point and lower CPU consumption.

    My lower-spec Macbook hangs in at idle temps of 45-50° (with external screen) or 34-39°C with integrated GPU (on the original thermal paste).
    Thats a few degrees cooler than the higher-spec, but I guess with the lower-powered chips, that somehow makes sense. (However it has load-temps of 95°C which I didnt have on the one with the new thermal paste).

    Bottom line is though, the GPU of my high-end mac just failed 2 days ago, despite the thermal past, "okay" temperatures and no gaming (at least not in the last 18 months). It happened completely out of the blue, but since it happened to a few friends already I knew what to do.
    So in preparation and for demonstration purposes I installed a Benchmark software, which after all, kicked the GPU to the curb (after just one test run) and now its not booting at all.
    (Gonna take it in for a GPU replacement & reball come first on monday).
     
  22. undesign thread starter macrumors regular

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    Nov 4, 2013
    #22
    Pictures below!

    The setup:

    [​IMG]

    I got myself WELL prepared. Isopropanol 99%, therefor almost NO water in the cleaning solution at all. Toothpicks, tissue paper, cotton swabs, etc. I used a blank piece of paper to have my screws in place which were held by tape and noted accordingly to the ifixit notes found here:

    http://www.ifixit.com/Guide/MacBook+Pro+15-Inch+Unibody+Early+2011+Heat+Sink+Replacement/5896

    Also, I paid close attention to both these videos:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LF0PBUnoNOc
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VlMxoHK0Os4

    Here's how Apple applied the thermal paste after I told them to go EASY on the paste two times (click the photo to enlarge):

    [​IMG]

    Here's how I reapplied the thermal paste on the CPU:

    [​IMG]

    And reapplied on the GPU:

    [​IMG]

    I just finished about 40 minutes ago and am typing this from another computer (work laptop). I should note that after booting, my idle temperature was sitting at 33C without ANYTHING loaded. This is down from about 37-38. So already about a 15% drop!

    I'll do some more tests later to replicate the previous ones for a more thorough comparison.
     
  23. undesign, Dec 8, 2013
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2013

    undesign thread starter macrumors regular

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    #23
    I just ran a test with a 480p youtube clip that I ran before in another thread (see below where its quoted). Difference now after 17 minutes is 1C, down to 56C.

    Here's a screenshot after 17 minutes (click to enlarge):

    [​IMG]

    I let the laptop cool down to 36C and played the same 1080P youtube video in Chrome and it took about 12 minutes of play to reach 82C. Continuing the video, temps remain at 82C while the fans speed up slightly to 2,200 RPM.

     
  24. Swampus macrumors 6502

    Swampus

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    #24
    I've only used AS-5 in ideal situations and never on a dual heatsink assembly, so maybe wait for some others to weigh in on what I'm about to say (I'm not sure and I might be wrong).

    My first impression in looking at your photographs is that you might have trapped some air between the die and heatsink. Given the texture of AS-5 and the mount pressure here, it's hard for me to think otherwise.

    You should see a few degrees of improvement over the next 200 hours as it cures, but I think it could be much better.

    My advice would be to follow Arctic Silver's exact instructions for lidless mobile packages:

    http://www.arcticsilver.com/pdf/appmeth/int/ss/intel_app_method_surface_spread_v1.1.pdf

    I would do everything exactly as instructed, including tinting the heatsink. They suggest using a single-edge razor blade to spread onto the die and an old credit card to tint the heatsink.

    Again, maybe first wait to see what others have to say. It has been a while since I've used this.
     
  25. Doward macrumors 6502a

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    Feb 21, 2013
    #25
    It's a bit of an art, but you actually can get better results via the 'grain of rice' method - if you look at your way, you can trap small bubbles of air, reducing the thermal conductivity between the die and heatsink. The grain of rice method removes that.

    That said, looks like good results - of course, lapping the heatsink and ensuring no trapped air could lead to better results ;)

    Good to see that even the Apple genius' put too much heatsink compound in.:rolleyes:
     

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