New MacBooks with i5 i7 still fanless?

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by Fozziebear40, Jun 6, 2017.

  1. Fozziebear40 macrumors regular


    Apr 14, 2008
    Newton-le-Willows, England
  2. Rapp macrumors member


    Apr 1, 2011
    Yes they are still 4.5w CPUs just rebranded from core m to core i.
  3. Appleaker macrumors 68020

    Jun 13, 2016
    As predicted, it's caused a lot of confusion. If Apple went with non-fan less (15W) chips they would say and it would be a new model. Anyway, they are the same m5 and m7 tier processors but rebranded and at a higher clock speed than 2015/16 models.
  4. addictzz macrumors 6502

    Jun 11, 2012
    Is it the same i5 & i7 processor Surface Pro has in its 2017 iteration?
  5. Appleaker macrumors 68020

    Jun 13, 2016
    No, that has 15W chips but it's still fanless because they managed to redesign the internals. Although only the i5 model is fanless and it doesn't come with Iris graphics like the i7.
    Similarly, the Huawei MateBook X has managed to get a similar design to the MacBook (in fact it's thinner) 15W chips and a fanless design. I think lowering the TDP is part of how they do this.
    But if you want 15W chips, they can be found in the base 13" MacBook Pro. If they ever implemented them into a 12" MacBook design, it would likely be a redesign and we would hear a lot about it in the keynote.
  6. addictzz macrumors 6502

    Jun 11, 2012
    That's too bad. Now that you mention about Matebook X, it is thinner than macbook but still manage to cram 15W chips AND 1 more USB-C port. I wonder how Apple actually designs its laptop.
  7. Appleaker macrumors 68020

    Jun 13, 2016
    Yeah I'm also baffled how Apple can't manage to do it. Puts into question their internal notebook design capability as well as their software optimisation. I guess they want to continue with the 5W chips because it is a step towards more power efficient notebooks, but a lower TDP 15W chip might work just as well.
    The main issue I have with the 5W chips is the lack of graphics power, as well as performing longer tasks due to the power constraints.

    At this point, a second USB-C port would stop most peoples I/O complaints. I just think it makes sense and they should recognise that it is a Mac, and that's different to an iOS device. People want/need to plug stuff in a lot more.

    Honestly, what I need to consider and probably choose it over a MacBook Pro would be:
    - i5 minimum
    - A boost in graphics
    - Second USB-C port (ideally TB3)
    - $200-$300 price cut
  8. addictzz macrumors 6502

    Jun 11, 2012
    I am not an expert in CPU or power-efficiency but 10W saving does not seem much. I dont see a good reason for Apple to not use higher-rated CPU. Even being thin doesn't help. Huawei (and some other notebook manufacturers) can make it. Apple, being a company with higher margin and revenue, should have the resources to design one too.

    Yes! That second USB-C port. How hard it is to add a second port? Macbook is not THAT thin, Apple. In Apple's defense, Microsoft is also being silly by not including USB-C in their Surface Pro.

    The macbook pro this year is also not giving a compelling reason to buy. 128GB for a baseline model and no other port beside USB-C and 3.5mm headphone (at this point, I am glad they still keep the 3.5mm jack).
  9. NT1440 macrumors G4


    May 18, 2008
    Here's the thing....the Macbook is never going to have fans again, that's the entire point of the design.
  10. C64 macrumors 65816


    Sep 3, 2008
    Pro it is, because you can wait a looong time for that.
  11. Appleaker macrumors 68020

    Jun 13, 2016
    Completely agree. We may see the inevitable price cut later this year along with the rumored 15" MBP with 32GB RAM which would make it more appealing.

    I think the 12" should have 2 USB-C ports, while the base 13" should have at least 3 TB3 ports, so it's even with 2 ports on either side and still more than the 12". The Touch Bar 13" and 15" should have 4 TB3 ports (or more) with the addition of an SD card slot.
  12. maerz001 macrumors 6502a


    Nov 2, 2010
    Don't hold your breath for a second upgrade in 2017 and SD slot. When should this be? October as usual. Never
  13. KPOM macrumors G5

    Oct 23, 2010
    The 15W chips get downclocked to 7.5W so there is no free lunch. Apple actually upclocks the 4.5W chips to 5W. The Matebook is a little heavier and one of the USB-C ports is gimped. It also performs similarly to the i5 MacBook on Geekbench and I suspect real world performance isn't noticeably different. On any fanless design it is thermals not W that are the real limiters.
  14. Appleaker macrumors 68020

    Jun 13, 2016
    Yeah I know they lowered the TDP, they wouldn't be able to get acceptable battery life if it wasn't. The 4.5W processors are also That's true although naturally the higher the TDP, the hotter the chip will get.
    I understand it performs similarly (although thought it was a bit better than that), but it allows the possible use of Iris graphics or at least 520 which are improved over the 615. It also helps in terms of peoples perception of the processor power, not to mention it will be better for sustained loads. Although I believe the 4.5W chips can be run at 7W so that would improve the performance if they did something like that, which I would doubt they would do due to battery life.

    The 5W chips will eventually reach a level where there not perceived as underpowered, although the perception of the processor by reviewers doesn't help - At first it was a bit ridiculous but it is getting better. Also Apple runs them at 100-200MHz higher so they are faster. I just think they should remove the m3 model.
  15. ColdShadow macrumors 65816


    Sep 25, 2013
    As others already mentioned,the i5 & i7 in 2017 12" Macbooks are re-branded M5 and M7,not real i5 and i7 you find in likes of Surface Pro 4.
    which is a big shame and in fact deceiving.

    I can't understant how other manufacturers like Huawei and Asus can fit proper i5 CPU in even thinner laptops than 12" Macbook without fan,but Apple can't and uses misleading marketing to make some people think they are getting i5 and i7 powered machines.
  16. KPOM macrumors G5

    Oct 23, 2010
    What is misleading? That is what Intel calls the chips.

    Asus uses fans and Huawei down clocks the 15W chips to 7W, which reduces performance.
  17. Appleaker macrumors 68020

    Jun 13, 2016
    I don't think it's deceiving at all. It's design so people start taking the chips seriously (and rightly so having seen the performance improvements) but arguably more importantly so people stop getting confused with the naming of the processors. They are at the point now where they deserve the i5 title. I don't think they deserve the i7 title, but I don't think the 15W i7s do either.

    People are getting confused because they:
    - See the name
    - Don't consider from the clock speed and the fact the m3s still there, that they are still 5W chips
    - Don't to a simple google search
    - Jump to the baseless conclusion that Apple has put 15W processors in there (along with a 5W m3 option)

    The rebranding was almost a year ago yet there is still confusion within the tech community.
  18. C64 macrumors 65816


    Sep 3, 2008
    Indeed. It's Intel that's being misleading with their naming and marketing of these products. Apple can't really change the name of these CPUs and cause even more confusion. In the end it doesn't really matter that much for Apple either: the MB is not for Pro users, that's what the MBP is for, and they come in good-better-best configs. Whatever those CPUs are (called) doesn't matter to the average consumer, just to people like us, and we spend 10 seconds on Google and know what's what.

    As for the lack of fans, I'm pretty sure that Apple is one of the best when it comes to thermal regulation, and they're working hard on new designs to cram even more powerful CPUs into smaller bodies without fans. But 15W CPUs also require more battery, so that's something else they need to consider. And as mentioned, others are choosing for other trade-offs.
  19. oneMadRssn macrumors 601


    Sep 8, 2011
    Boston, MA
    The difference between 5W and 15W is pretty big. Think of it this way: the latter uses 3x the power and thus produces 3x the heat as the former.

    I think the jury is still out about whether Huawei and the other OEMs can make it work with a fanless design. I have confidence that the Macbook will easily last for 5+ years of use - I do not have this confidence in Huawei or anyone else. Further, the reviews of the Huawei Matebook X note that is has lackluster battery life for the high cost. Also, where do you even go for support with Huawei? I don't see too many Huawei stores around here...

    I agree the Macbook needs a second USB-C port, and I'm sure they'll add it when Intel builds-in the TB3 controller into the 4.5W chips. I understand this will happen in the next generation.
  20. bill-p macrumors 68000

    Jul 23, 2011

    Considering the MacBook has a 41WHr battery. Roughly. Every 1W makes a difference in energy saving.

    You can see easily that 41WHr / 5W = 8Hr. That's roughly what you'll get with the MacBook now. Display sips about 3W on average around 50% brightness, and CPU takes 2W doing light tasks or when idling. At max load and max brightness, display is ramped up to 8W + 5W for CPU and we're up to 13W power consumption, which drops run time to roughly a bit over 3Hr. That's the main reason Apple didn't want to allow the CPU to maintain faster speed over a longer period of time.

    The Huawei Matebook X is also one of those "grass is greener on the other side" cases. Intel 520 relies on Turbo in order to boost its clockspeed. So when you bog the CPU and force it to run a lot slower, the GPU follows. The end result is something not very different from the 515. There's no free lunch.

    The Intel HD 515/615 GPU are already as good as they could be given the thermal constraints.

    Plus you can look at the Huawei Matebook as a prime example of what I have been preaching for a long time: the 2nd USB-C port will be held back because the current Core M chips technically do not have enough data lanes to support full USB-C speed for both ports. The same will hold true even when Thunderbolt 3 capable chips come out. If 1 port is Thunderbolt 3 then the other one will be downgraded. Again, no free lunch.

    Intel is actually having troubles manufacturing the next generation of their chips, and that's the predicament we find ourselves in now. At this rate, it'll be early next year before Intel comes out with anything meaningful that Apple can push into the MacBook.
  21. Esquire1 macrumors member

    Jun 4, 2010
    bill, do you have a Twitter or newsletter or something? Love your posts. Super insightful.
  22. bill-p macrumors 68000

    Jul 23, 2011
    Thanks! Unfortunately, I don't have a social network account. I'm just one lowly developer slaving away in the office and sneaking on to here to spout BS. Sometimes they may just come out to be true, but honestly, most of the time, I'm just having fun discussing things.

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