noisy '09 quad MacPro

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by zephonic, Nov 9, 2011.

  1. zephonic macrumors 65816

    zephonic

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2011
    Location:
    greater L.A. area
    #1
    I have a W3520, and it's very noisy. There's a fairly constant low-pitched whine, and the fans aren't very quiet either. Is this normal for this model? Everymac says they are supposed to be dead quiet.

    I do music and audio so the noise compromises my work environment.
     
  2. fairbanx macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2010
    Location:
    Germany
    #2
    Search the web for "mac pro humming noise", and you'll get some more information. I still have this noise on my Mac Pro 4,1 and couldn't find a solution yet.
     
  3. G-Force macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2006
    #3
    It's the nature of the 4,1's fans I guess, mine also has it. Doesn't bother me too much though because it's on the floor now. But when my Mac Pro was on my desk it was quite annoying in a quiet room.
     
  4. handheldgames macrumors 6502a

    handheldgames

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2009
    #4
    The processor cage front and rear fans in the 2009/2010 run way too high (at least in my opinion.) They can be picked up for cheap on the net.

    There is a control panel extension a MR member created called "fan control". It's the only app I'm aware of that allows you to slow these two fans to 600rpm. I maintain great temps and enjoy a silent mac pro at the same time.
     

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  5. fairbanx macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2010
    Location:
    Germany
    #5
    Afaik (I'm not at home at the moment) the front/rear fans run on < 600 rpm per default, PCIe about 800 rpm. I think, it's the the heatsink on my Mac Pro that creates the humming noise.
     
  6. zephonic thread starter macrumors 65816

    zephonic

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2011
    Location:
    greater L.A. area
    #6

    I think this can be done with iStat menus as well? I haven't done it yet, but will see if that helps and how much.

    I have the machine open on my desk now and although the fan noise is considerable, I haven't been able to identify the source of the hum/whine.

    ----------

    Or could iStat menus be the culprit? Changing the rules for fan control does not do anything.

    In my machine all the fans go flat out from bootup.
     
  7. firedownunder macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 5, 2011
    #7
    Make sure the hard drive/s are secured firmly to the sleds. If they're even a little loose the ensuing vibration could cause the humming sound you hear. My 2009 quad runs whisper quiet, and I have 8 drives installed.
     
  8. Inconsequential macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2007
    #8
    Yes, but the iStat fans are constant.

    My edited app ramps up after a set threshold, which is why it's better than iStat for SMC Fan Control.




    This was me, it was a small change to software originally intended for the MacBook Pros.

    I have a new version that you can select any fan speed (although SMC says no at about 400rpm...)


    Stock idle speed for these fans is 600rpm, I have mine set at 500rpm.


    Biggest noise from my MP is the 4870 fan, then the WD VR in the front bay then the other HDs. The main fans themselves are pretty quiet tbh.
     
  9. fairbanx macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2010
    Location:
    Germany
    #9
    Please PM me! Thanks.
     
  10. zephonic thread starter macrumors 65816

    zephonic

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2011
    Location:
    greater L.A. area
    #10
    I think in my case the fans are not really the main problem. I've got a hum/whine not unlike the one coming from an old refrigerator. Is that the power supply? What could be done about that?

    I do have all the HDD bays full, btw, but I tried without the extra drives and the whine was still there.
     
  11. blinkfrog macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2009
    #11
    I have refrigerator-like hum from my 2009 Mac Pro, and it is certainly fans are source. Try to stop big Intake and Exhaust fans by finger or pen, and you will be able to detect if it is a source of problem.

    One of solutions is to replace these Apple fans by good and silent third party ones.
     
  12. peterlthomas macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2011
    #12
    Hi!

    Did you find it made a significant difference over stock? I used to own a similar machine (except with a GT120) and I found it a little loud for my taste.

    I sold it a while ago but I'm tempted to buy one back again. If I knew it would be noticeably quieter then that would be a bonus!

    Pete
     
  13. gglockner macrumors 6502

    gglockner

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2007
    Location:
    Bellevue, WA
    #13
    The best advice is to test everything: fans, hard drives and sleds, optical drive, case latch. Test these individually to isolate the noise source.
     
  14. zephonic thread starter macrumors 65816

    zephonic

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    Feb 7, 2011
    Location:
    greater L.A. area
    #14
    How? Can you even power up without all the fans/gpu/hdd/odd?
     
  15. gglockner macrumors 6502

    gglockner

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2007
    Location:
    Bellevue, WA
    #15
    Others have mentioned temporarily disabling fans; it's easy to reseat a hard drive or to boot off an external drive. An optical drive is not necessary. GPU is the one exception, but in a pinch you can try to swap with another GPU.
     
  16. SatyMahajan macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2009
    Location:
    Cambridge, MA
    #16
    Do you have an ATI 4870? I had one in my 2009 MP and when I switched it to the GTX 285, I no longer had the humming problem.
     
  17. zephonic thread starter macrumors 65816

    zephonic

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2011
    Location:
    greater L.A. area

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