MBP, iMac, WoW and heat questions

Discussion in 'Mac and PC Games' started by Kaboom, Aug 27, 2010.

  1. Kaboom macrumors newbie

    Aug 27, 2010
    Hi :)

    I tried to search for these questions, but still find myself lacking some answers..
    I have the base 15" i5 MBP, with the HR display and i like it alot :) Just a bit nervous about the heat generation of this thing while running games on it.

    First of all, I noticed alot of you guys play WoW on your macs.. I do too on mine, and like yours, mine gets rather hot.
    First question, will it affect the heat in any way to run WoW under Windows instead of OSX? Or is it only the performance i will increase?
    I did install SMCFanControl, and upped the fans to 3000 rpm while idle, but this still won't help when running games for longer periods of time, since it still gets hot, just a tad slower.

    Next question:
    Do any of you guys play wow on a MBP on an external monitor for longer periods of time? Any of you have any bad experience with this and heat?(caus gaming on this thing still gets hot, and external monitor doesn't help on the heat for sure..)

    Aaaand another question:
    Since my work might give me the option of getting an iMac, I'm curious about the noise levels on this while gaming WoW.. Caus my MBP is quite noisy when fans are spinning at 5500-6000 rpm.. Could any of you try and describe the noise level of the iMac? Or maybe record the noise somehow? :)

    I did try and search like i mentioned, but i couldn't find exact descriptions for my questions.. :/
  2. sinser macrumors 6502a


    Sep 16, 2003
    First of all, it worries me too.
    I play WOW on a late 08 MBP Pro always attached to an external ACD. It gets hot, but I have done all that was possible to limit it (apart from quitting the game :)):

    1) WOW settings almost on low (I know, it sucks...)
    2) WOW framerate capped to 30 (this helps a LOT)
    3) cooling pad
    4) SMC fan control (but lots of time I just keep the default RPMs)

    That said and done, my temperature, as reported by SMC fan control, fluctuates in the 72-75 C range while raiding with fans spinning at around 4000 rpm...
    Dalaran was accessible to me in the past, but after the more recent game patches I stay away from it when lots of ppl are online..

    As for noise, yes, fans spinning at 5500-6000 are noticeable...
  3. TMRaven macrumors 68020


    Nov 5, 2009
    When you're gaming on the iMac, you probably won't have any noise at all. The gpu goes up to around 85 at max, before fans finally start to kick in long after. When the fans kick in, it's only a couple hundred rpm increases (1200rpm vs 1000rpm on odd fan), so not very noticeable at all.
  4. RedReplicant macrumors 6502a

    Mar 31, 2010
    I played for a long time on a 13" with an external - toward the end of owning it I found myself getting huge framerate lags after a while from overheating.

    As mentioned before - make sure you cap the framerate - it really make a big difference. Also, I always ran SMCFanControl maxed out and sat the computer infront of my desk fan.

    My iMac... I never heard a peep out of it other than the time I did a firmware update and it maxed the fans out.
  5. bobr1952 macrumors 68020


    Jan 21, 2008
    Melbourne, FL
    My GPU would sometimes get too hot playing WoW and cause the system to freeze. I use SMC and run the fans at 2500 to keep things cooler--I don't notice any serious increase in noise but I always have music playing so I don't hear anything anyway.
  6. Kaboom thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 27, 2010
    I already capped my FPS to 30 on my mbp which seemed to help alot here too, but it's just delaying the heat from my experience.. instead of going to 6k rpm after 5 min, it takes around 20 min.. Heat still rises ;)

    It's nice to hear that the iMac won't have the same "noise" problem tho, i was just a bit worried that they maybe used the same small noisy fans..

    Thanks for all your replies :) They're highly appreciated!
  7. zeemeerman2 macrumors 6502

    Feb 21, 2010
    I play WoW from my MacBook (mid 2008) for a couple of years now.

    The fans will get to 6200 rpm, and the temperature about 70° Celcius. And then, it'll stay there. Don't worry, it can still get hotter. I get sometimes around 80° C when doing heavy movie app tasks. So in comparison, you mac shouldn't explode when playing WoW.

    No framerate limited for me, when playing WoW.

    If you want to cap the framerate, here are some commands you'd like:
    /console maxfps 30 (sets the framerate to 30. Change the value to 0 to put it back to default)
    /console maxfpsbk 20 (now this is interesting. It sets the framerate of WoW to 20, but only when WoW is running in the background (aka the window is not active). This is what I use, and I put it on framerate 5. It comes in handy when I search something on the internet while being Away from Keyboard in WoW. My laptop instantly cools down, and fans are becoming less noisy. Until I toggle back to WoW, that is. ;) )
    Cmd-M (Toggle full screen: If you want to play in Full-screen, and want to Cmd-Tab away, you notice it doesn't work. You can simply toggle Full-screen on and off (Mac-only) by pressing Command-M. Once you're not in full-screen, you can switch to another application, while WoW is still running. (mind /console maxfpsbk 5!))
  8. Libertine Lush macrumors 6502a

    Nov 23, 2009
    That is very interesting. I switch to Firefox a lot while WOWing, so I can look up things in WOWWiki and WOWHead, check IMs, etc. I may consider using this. I assume you change the "20" to "0" to remove the cap?
  9. zeemeerman2 macrumors 6502

    Feb 21, 2010
    That's true. Don't forget to change the number to the cap you want to set it instead of twenty.

    From my testings, you can't put it lower than 5 (other than 0).
  10. Libertine Lush macrumors 6502a

    Nov 23, 2009
    Thank you!

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