Question to 15" MBP 2017 owners about fan speed

bd4

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Original poster
Jan 26, 2014
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I recently got my hands on a 15" MBP from 2016 and I saw that the fans are spinning constantly, even when in idle (both around 2000 rpm). You can see this for example in iStat Menus. The 13" MBPs are able to turn their fan(s) completely off when in idle.

So can anyone tell me how the new 2017 15" models are behaving? Do they still have their fans on even when in idle?
 

macman01101

macrumors member
May 2, 2005
34
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I've had 2 2017 15" 2.9ghz, and yes fans are on at idle (right around 2000rpm). On one of them the CPU temp baseline/idle is around 33-37C, the other is around 37-42C.

Anecdotally, at 2k rpm you can't really hear it, but the one that runs 5+ degrees hotter warms up fast, and then you can hear the fans.

I hate, hate fan noise too. A little annoying that there seems to be some variation in what is likely thermal paste application. But, 2 devices is not a sufficient sample set.
 

aevan

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Feb 5, 2015
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I recently got my hands on a 15" MBP from 2016 and I saw that the fans are spinning constantly, even when in idle (both around 2000 rpm). You can see this for example in iStat Menus. The 13" MBPs are able to turn their fan(s) completely off when in idle.

So can anyone tell me how the new 2017 15" models are behaving? Do they still have their fans on even when in idle?
Fans are always on, even on idle, on every laptop that has fans. The only time fans are not working is when the notebook is sleeping or shut off. 2000rpm at idle is standard, it has been the same on every MBP I have ever seen in the past decade.
 
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Patcell

macrumors 6502
Aug 8, 2016
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Bergen County, NJ
I have a 2017 15" also... fans always on (2k RPM as cited), even when completely idle. I can't hear it though unless I am in a quiet room and I put my ear up to the machine.
 

joefoong79

macrumors regular
Jun 23, 2017
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Fans are always on, even on idle, on every laptop that has fans. The only time fans are not working is when the notebook is sleeping or shut off. 2000rpm at idle is standard, it has been the same on every MBP I have ever seen in the past decade.
Mine mbp 13" will not kick on at atleat 49 Celsius.
 

New_Mac_Smell

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Oct 17, 2016
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Mine mbp 13" will not kick on at atleat 49 Celsius.
If you're using one of them there "Fanny" :eek: apps, make sure you install the plugins so it can read the data correctly. They don't display RPM until it goes above idle. Seen this issue a few times with people overly concerned about temperatures and convincing themselves the fans on their computers are not working.

Fans are always on, if they weren't on even at idle you'd soon know about it, as it would ramp up the heat very quickly.
 

aevan

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Mine mbp 13" will not kick on at atleat 49 Celsius.
Are you saying that your fans don't work until you hit 49 celsius - because if you are, you're wrong :)

It's another matter whether you hear the fans below 49 celsius. Believe me, they ARE working. At around 2000rpm, most likely.
 
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bd4

macrumors member
Original poster
Jan 26, 2014
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Are you saying that your fans don't work until you hit 49 celsius - because if you are, you're wrong :)

It's another matter whether you hear the fans below 49 celsius. Believe me, they ARE working.
So do you have any proof for that theory?
 

bd4

macrumors member
Original poster
Jan 26, 2014
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19
Well, if I look into iStat Menus on my 13" MBP 2016, it shows consistently "0 rpm". If I put some load on the CPU and the temperature rises above 50°C, the fan turns on, starting at about 1200 rpm. It's barely noticeable, but putting my ear on the right side of the keyboard, I can hear it running then. At "0 rpm" I can't hear anything.

So unless you have opened a machine and saw the fan running while the sensors are reporting "0 rpm", I'm skeptical. The 12" MacBook has a passive cooling, why shouldn't a 13" MBP be able to turn off its fan at idle?
 

joefoong79

macrumors regular
Jun 23, 2017
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Are you saying that your fans don't work until you hit 49 celsius - because if you are, you're wrong :)

It's another matter whether you hear the fans below 49 celsius. Believe me, they ARE working. At around 2000rpm, most likely.
Yes corrected. You can ask other people here of they mbp 13" 2017 or 2016 opinion. New 13" mbp fan won't kick in at 49 C. OP already mention. Please check one at Apple Store or ask genius at store.
 

New_Mac_Smell

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Oct 17, 2016
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Well, if I look into iStat Menus on my 13" MBP 2016, it shows consistently "0 rpm". If I put some load on the CPU and the temperature rises above 50°C, the fan turns on, starting at about 1200 rpm. It's barely noticeable, but putting my ear on the right side of the keyboard, I can hear it running then. At "0 rpm" I can't hear anything.

So unless you have opened a machine and saw the fan running while the sensors are reporting "0 rpm", I'm skeptical. The 12" MacBook has a passive cooling, why shouldn't a 13" MBP be able to turn off its fan at idle?
I doubt you'd be able to here a fan spinning at 2000rpm without the aide of a stethoscope... As I mentioned, iStat is a bit buggy, so make sure everything is working correctly. Try this https://wpguru.co.uk/2015/12/how-to-check-the-fan-speed-on-your-mac/ at idle and compare it to iStat.

Also as you asked, the 12" uses a 4.5w processor specifically designed to be ran without a fan. The MBP uses 15w nTB, 28w TB, these are designed to be more powerful and so require more cooling.
 
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vjobs

macrumors regular
Nov 23, 2013
106
31
Amsterdam, Netherlands
I have a 2017 MacBook Pro 15".

In idle, the fans keep running at about 2000 rpm, I don't hear them. I really need to kick this MacBook Pro on it's ass to increase the fan speed. Even then, they are much less audible than the fans in my previous 2014 MacBook Pro 15".
 

negativzero

macrumors 6502a
Jul 19, 2011
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Never heard the fans blast once on my new 2017 15" MacBook Pro. On my 2012 non-retina, it fired up like a jet engine, even on tasks like light surfing. The difference is night and day.
 

aevan

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Feb 5, 2015
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Yes corrected. You can ask other people here of they mbp 13" 2017 or 2016 opinion. New 13" mbp fan won't kick in at 49 C. OP already mention.
Of course it will. New 13" mbp fan works from the moment the screen is on, just like any other notebook with fans. You may not hear it, but it is working. The fans on notebooks (those that have them) are always working. The only difference is speeds and whether they are audible or not.
[doublepost=1501267536][/doublepost]
Well, if I look into iStat Menus on my 13" MBP 2016, it shows consistently "0 rpm". If I put some load on the CPU and the temperature rises above 50°C, the fan turns on, starting at about 1200 rpm. It's barely noticeable, but putting my ear on the right side of the keyboard, I can hear it running then. At "0 rpm" I can't hear anything.

So unless you have opened a machine and saw the fan running while the sensors are reporting "0 rpm", I'm skeptical. The 12" MacBook has a passive cooling, why shouldn't a 13" MBP be able to turn off its fan at idle?
The thing is, that CPU is not designed to work with passive cooling, even at idle. The iStat menus still haven't been updated to support 2017 models (check the version history) so they are not reporting accurate information. Latest iStat update was in November 2016, before the new models. Not the first time iStat didn't show correct information before it was updated for new hardware. (Though I am surprised they still didn't update it for new ones).
 
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iregret

macrumors 6502a
Jan 23, 2012
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Whelp, someone is going to have to take the bottom off of their MacBook and look. It’s the only solution.

Also, who cares? lol
 

vjobs

macrumors regular
Nov 23, 2013
106
31
Amsterdam, Netherlands
Of course it will. New 13" mbp fan works from the moment the screen is on, just like any other notebook with fans. You may not hear it, but it is working. The fans on notebooks (those that have them) are always working. The only difference is speeds and whether they are audible or not.

The thing is, that CPU is not designed to work with passive cooling, even at idle. The iStat menus still haven't been updated to support 2017 models (check the version history) so they are not reporting accurate information. Latest iStat update was in November 2016, before the new models. Not the first time iStat didn't show correct information before it was updated for new hardware. (Though I am surprised they still didn't update it for new ones).
This is true. The fans are always running when the MacBook Pro is on. Luckily! Because without running fans your MacBook Pro would heat up fast, even in idle. This could reduce lifespan of your battery for example, best operating temperature for the battery is between 20-40 degrees Celsius.
 

joefoong79

macrumors regular
Jun 23, 2017
176
32
This is true. The fans are always running when the MacBook Pro is on. Luckily! Because without running fans your MacBook Pro would heat up fast, even in idle. This could reduce lifespan of your battery for example, best operating temperature for the battery is between 20-40 degrees Celsius.
New intel chip is much cooler then the predecessor. 15" fan always run because it got GPU make the machine hotter then 13". BTW my mac always around 41-45 C so the fan never kick in most of time that I owned the half years. Only if I fire up parallels.
 

aevan

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Feb 5, 2015
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Personally I believe it's entirely likely that the fans may only spool up when required, given my newest notebook has a full i5U 15W CPU and is passively cooled, nor does it throttle under normal usage...


Q-6
Are you certain? First time I heard of a "U" series i5 that runs fanless. In fact, I'm convinced they do not. The latest Surface Pro is lauded for having a fanless i5 Kaby Lake - and that is a "Y" series 7W CPU. MacBook also has a Y series i5.
[doublepost=1501271894][/doublepost]
New intel chip is much cooler then the predecessor. 15" fan always run because it got GPU make the machine hotter then 13". BTW my mac always around 41-45 C so the fan never kick in most of time that I owned the half years. Only if I fire up parallels.
If it's a U i5, it runs fans, always. If it's a Y chip, it doesn't have fans and you're using a 12" MacBook. It really is that simple.

Your computer is 41-45 C and the fans are working (silently) to keep it that way. I understand that you think they don't work because they are almost completely silent. But even on my 15", I can't hear them at 2000rpm, even if I put my ear to the keyboard. Apple makes silent fans - but if you have a MacBook Pro they are always working.

My 15" is also constantly between 40-45 C while working with non-demanding stuff. And I can't hear the fans, no matter how hard I try. They are working though. It's how these CPUs are built. Unless you have a 7W CPU, the fans are running. If you have a MacBook Pro, any MacBook Pro - you don't have a 7W CPU. Even the nTB model with a 15W CPU uses a fan all the time when it's not sleeping or off, not to mention a TB 28W model.
 
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joefoong79

macrumors regular
Jun 23, 2017
176
32
Are you certain? First time I heard of a "U" series i5 that runs fanless. In fact, I'm convinced they do not. The latest Surface Pro is lauded for having a fanless i5 Kaby Lake - and that is a "Y" series 7W CPU. MacBook also has a Y series i5.
[doublepost=1501271894][/doublepost]

If it's a U i5, it runs fans, always. If it's a Y chip, it doesn't have fans and you're using a 12" MacBook. It really is that simple.

Your computer is 41-45 C and the fans are working (silently) to keep it that way. I understand that you think they don't work because they are almost completely silent. But even on my 15", I can't hear them at 2000rpm, even if I put my ear to the keyboard. Apple makes silent fans - but if you have a MacBook Pro they are always working.

My 15" is also constantly between 40-45 C while working with non-demanding stuff. And I can't hear the fans, no matter how hard I try. They are working though. It's how these CPUs are built. Unless you have a 7W CPU, the fans are running. If you have a MacBook Pro, any MacBook Pro - you don't have a 7W CPU. Even the nTB model with a 15W CPU uses a fan all the time it's not sleeping or off, not to mention a TB 28W model.
So better open the 13" at Apple Store to make you believe. LoL
 

aevan

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Feb 5, 2015
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So better open the 13" at Apple Store to make you believe. LoL
I don't have to, I know how current Intel CPUs work. I'm sorry to say, but this is common knowledge. Even most basic CPU enthusiasts know this, it's nothing special or new. Intel rebranded the Y series called m3, m5, m7 series Skylake chips to Y series m3, i5 and i7 with Kaby Lake. They are 7W chips with passive cooling, only notebook Intel CPUs that don't require constant fans blowing at them. Everything else is constantly cooled at either silent or audible fan speeds.
 

vjobs

macrumors regular
Nov 23, 2013
106
31
Amsterdam, Netherlands
New intel chip is much cooler then the predecessor. 15" fan always run because it got GPU make the machine hotter then 13". BTW my mac always around 41-45 C so the fan never kick in most of time that I owned the half years. Only if I fire up parallels.
This can't be the reason. In my usage (and most people's usage), the dGPU on the 15" is not used most of the time. The MacBook Pro line-up (and their processors) simply aren't made to have passive cooling.
 
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joefoong79

macrumors regular
Jun 23, 2017
176
32
I don't have to, I know how current Intel CPUs work. I'm sorry to say, but this is common knowledge. Even most basic CPU enthusiasts know this, it's nothing special or new. Intel rebranded the Y series called m3, m5, m7 series Skylake chips to Y series m3, i5 and i7 with Kaby Lake. They are 7W chips with passive cooling, only notebook Intel CPUs that don't require constant fans blowing at them. Everything else is constantly cooled at either silent or audible fan speeds.
Then I had to said you are not an expert. Common knowledge. LOL.......WTH......LOL. :D
[doublepost=1501273440][/doublepost]
This can't be the reason. In my usage (and most people's usage), the dGPU is not used most of the time. The MacBook Pro line-up (and their processors) simply aren't made to have passive cooling.
Got to email Apple engineer for this. The only fact here is not just me. But a lot 13" user report their fan not always kick in. What proof still need to provide. Check the forum see how many forumer mention about his 13" fan. :rolleyes:
 

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