Questions about macbook trackpad, noise and warranty (3 in 1!)

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Jollins, Jun 9, 2006.

  1. Jollins macrumors regular


    Jun 9, 2006
    This MacBook is the first Mac I've owned (Mac user as of June 4) and I love this thing. I've discovered most of the mac-equivalents of the windows freeware I use are much nicer too (Adium, Onyx, etc). Anyway... my questions:

    1) Is there any software that adds extra settings to the trackpad preferences? My PC laptop's synaptics driver had a whole bunch of sensitivity controls which were very nice.

    2) My MacBook has the "mooing" issue rarely, and when it does it's very faint and it sounds like many others have it much worse. To me it sounds a lot more like light breathing. Has Apple fixed issues like this in the past with firmware updates? Can they do something in 10.4.7? If I took this computer into the store I probably wont be able to make it "moo" so I'm not sure if they would recognize it as an issue.
    Also in a silent room I hear a somewhat high-pitched whining noise coming from the area around the hinge. Check by going into a silent room and pressing your ear up against the rear vent. Normal?

    3) Assuming nothing happens with the genius bar, what if I re-applied thermal paste myself? I know technically it would void my factory warranty but how would Apple know? I have yet to look into AppleCare. If Apple is able to tell if their hardware has been tampered with would it void applecare?

  2. Makosuke macrumors 603

    Aug 15, 2001
    The Cool Part of CA, USA
    Sidetrack. $15 shareware, likely does everything you want and more. I believe the latest version will drive the MacBook trackpad as well.

    It sounds like more than a "mooing issue" you just have a fan that spins up occasionally when things get hot. This would be expected; the "mooing" problem, as I understand it, is when the fan continuously spins up and down, regardless of temperature. And yes, Apple has been known to fix these things via a firmware or OS update. I know various OS updates have both "broken" the fan control in my G5 (more accurately, made it oversensitive so that it spins way up for no particular reason), then fixed it in the next version. I'd just wait, were I you, since it doesn't really sound like an issue.

    The whine, if it's that quiet, is almost certainly normal--it's just the power circuitry doing its thing. Electronics aren't always entirely silent. Most people just don't notice it.

    If you can barely hear the noise, and it only "breathes" occasionally, I don't quite see why it would be worth taking in to the Genius bar to complain about. Would you have even thought anything of these noises if you hadn't been reading about others complaining?

    And I certainly don't see why you'd want to reapply the thermal paste unless you're having a serious heat problem. Are you? Would you have considered the computer as having a heat problem if you hadn't been reading here? For all you know, yours has thermal paste applied properly--the dozen or two samples online obviously indicate an issue, but some people haven't had as big of an issue, nor have they seen a big improvement after reapplication. Maybe you're one of them.

    Regardless, while Apple may not be able to tell you messed with it if you do take it in for warranty service, if you manage to break something in the process or an eventual failure leads them to check out that area, when they take it apart to look they're probably going to notice that it's not factory paste on the thing, which would indeed void your warranty as far as I know.
  3. Jollins thread starter macrumors regular


    Jun 9, 2006
    Well, to clarify when the "mooing" occurs the fan spins up and spins down in about 5 second intervals over and over again. Not normal fan operation - its just that my macbook only sometimes gets into this habit. I'll wait for the update.

    I inquired about the thermal paste because I've tried reapplying paste on other machines and Arctic Silver 5 does make a difference. This mac does get a uncomfortably toasty (though from what I've read its temps are avarage) and plus I like to disassemble stuff :cool:

    I'll be using this machine for many years in college so I want to make everything is okay.
  4. Fisheke macrumors member

    May 16, 2006
    Antwerp, Belgium
    Got the same phenomenon here,
    it occurs at very distinct temperature environment. I never have any mooing on my usual workplace (wooden desktop) but when i got to bed an place it next to me for a movie (something i do almost daily), you can count on it starting to moo soon. Always around approx. 67°C / 68°C.

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