Thinner iMac = Hotter iMac?

FatSweatyBlldog

macrumors regular
Original poster
Aug 16, 2007
176
0
Based on comparing a last gen 20'' iMac (2.16 GHz) to the new iMacs at the Apple store, the last gen iMacs run a lot cooler. The new "thinner" casing probably contributes to the AL iMacs running hotter to the touch.

Did the iMacs really need to be made thinner? As far as I can tell, the form factor doesn't change drastically, as a result. Unless doing a side-by-side comparison, does the thinner depth make a difference in the look of the computer?

Might it have been a better design choice to leave the case the same size, either allowing for a cooler-running machine, or the possibility of using a more robust graphics card, or CPU, etc.?

In short, do the iMacs "need" to be "thinner"? Does form begin to impede function, in this case?
 

Scarlet Fever

macrumors 68040
Jul 22, 2005
3,272
0
Bookshop!
The design appeals to more people than the type of GPU in it. Most of the people who are going to buy the iMac could just as easily do with an integrated graphics set.

and really, if you need more than a 2.8GHz CPU, you're probably not in the market for an iMac.
 

Sun Baked

macrumors G5
May 19, 2002
14,874
57
The aluminum skin makes it feel hotter to the touch, plastic is a much better insulator than aluminum.

A metal toaster will almost always feel hotter than a plastic one.
 

FatSweatyBlldog

macrumors regular
Original poster
Aug 16, 2007
176
0
The back of the new iMacs are still plastic, right? I guess my point of reference on the machine is the top back part of the casing.

In any case, regarding the "new look": is being "thinner" part of that look? I guess I don't see the design difference in the "thinner" part.

I see the appealing new design in the materials (AL+Glass) + and the black border, black apple etc...not a marginally thinner case. Which leads me to my question: is a thinner case on the iMac really "worth" the internal compromises (if any? maybe there were none...except that the new ones feel a lot hotter)
 

l33r0y

macrumors 6502
Aug 7, 2007
288
0
The back of the new iMacs are still plastic, right? I guess my point of reference on the machine is the top back part of the casing.

In any case, regarding the "new look": is being "thinner" part of that look? I guess I don't see the design difference in the "thinner" part.

I see the appealing new design in the materials (AL+Glass) + and the black border, black apple etc...not a marginally thinner case. Which leads me to my question: is a thinner case on the iMac really "worth" the internal compromises (if any? maybe there were none...except that the new ones feel a lot hotter)
Just beacuse it feels hotter on the outside, it doesn't mean its hotter on the inside.

As shipdestroyer has alreay pointed out, metal is a better conductor of heat than plastic, therefore heat is being drawn out of the casing, rather than being trapped in it.
 

FatSweatyBlldog

macrumors regular
Original poster
Aug 16, 2007
176
0
So, you all are pretty confident that the new imacs run hotter than old ones simply because of the use of AL in the case, now?

Still, as a desktop machine, what is the benefit of a slightly thinner iMac?

(especially at the expense of airflow...)
 

l33r0y

macrumors 6502
Aug 7, 2007
288
0
Still, as a desktop machine, what is the benefit of a slightly thinner iMac?

(especially at the expense of airflow and its relationship to performance)
Style....and the fact Steve said 'make it so'

Steve loves thin... and if you work for Apple and you love your job - you'll find a way!
 

atszyman

macrumors 68020
Sep 16, 2003
2,442
1
The Dallas 'burbs
Still, as a desktop machine, what is the benefit of a slightly thinner iMac?

(especially at the expense of airflow and its relationship to performance)
Aesthetics... If you're concerned about airflow and appearance you're best off with a typical PC tower or MacPro. The iMac is about a look, if you go through their entire history they are stylish machines without an over-abundance of power, but if you really need the power you're better off with a MacPro.
 

rds

macrumors regular
Aug 9, 2007
148
0
So, you all are pretty confident that the new imacs run hotter than old ones simply because of the use of AL in the case, now?

Still, as a desktop machine, what is the benefit of a slightly thinner iMac?

(especially at the expense of airflow...)
Aesthetics and wow factor are two.

If you were going to overclock, you wouldn't buy an iMac so it's a non-issue.
 

gnasher729

macrumors P6
Nov 25, 2005
16,530
3,127
So, you all are pretty confident that the new imacs run hotter than old ones simply because of the use of AL in the case, now?

Still, as a desktop machine, what is the benefit of a slightly thinner iMac?

(especially at the expense of airflow...)
No, it doesn't run hotter. The metal outside feels hotter, because it is better at removing the heat from inside. The more heat _you_ feel when you touch the case, the less heat the _processor_ inside will feel.
 

FatSweatyBlldog

macrumors regular
Original poster
Aug 16, 2007
176
0
Thanks for the replies, especially how the aluminum exterior actually dissipates the heat from the CPU.

That said, the old iMacs are beautiful and thin. They were made thinner, but personally, that's not what makes the new iMac beautiful or distinct in relation to the last model.

You're all saying just by looking at the new iMac you can tell its thinner (and thus more beautiful)...

My overall point is this: the old iMacs were pretty damn thin. the new ones essentially maintain the same form factor. The average person probably can't tell the difference in thinness. Why not leave the room "to breathe"?

Oh yeah, because Steve like thinner... :D
 

Mgkwho

macrumors 6502a
Mar 2, 2005
579
0
These actually do look thinner. The actual edge of the display is .94", down from 1.24" (I believe) for the 20". Its tapered back doesn't start at the very edge, and along with its black color gives more of an illusion of slimness.

Overall it is thinner, and considering everything that is in an iMac, it is a large design change. It just may not appear that way at first glance.

-=|Mgkwho
 

l33r0y

macrumors 6502
Aug 7, 2007
288
0
Ha! :D

The quest for thin hampers the power and features of Apple's computers. But that's Apple. I'm not complaining.
But does it?

If the chosen components are operating withing tolerances, simply adding more room to breathe will not increase the performance.

Sure, it will allow the possibility of the components to be overclocked, but how many people do that? A small minority.

The form factor would have to increase in depth by at least 200% to allow desktop components to be fitted...
 

TBi

macrumors 68030
Jul 26, 2005
2,582
0
Ireland
Ha! :D

The quest for thin hampers the power and features of Apple's computers. But that's Apple. I'm not complaining.
Actually thin can be better sometimes as it helps steamline the air flow through the case over the required components. A big emtpy space is only really useful if you don't use a fan to cool the internals or you don't want there to be any airvents at all.
 

FatSweatyBlldog

macrumors regular
Original poster
Aug 16, 2007
176
0
But does it?

If the chosen components are operating withing tolerances, simply adding more room to breathe will not increase the performance.

The form factor would have to increase in depth by at least 200% to allow desktop components to be fitted...
Well, won't the form limit the components that are viable options vis a vis the design choices?

Take for instance the video-card "issue." Might a different video-card (read: one that performs better, but runs hotter) have been available as a "chosen component" to the iMac if Steve jobs didn't project his body-image anxiety onto his already thin computers? (lol @ made in California!)

And doesn't the iMac already use desktop RAM and a desktop processor?

While there is a literal difference in thinness, I guess the difference it makes in appeal or form is fairly subjective. However, does the choice to go thin limit the "chosen components" available (and hence potential performance)?
 

stockcerts

macrumors 65816
Jun 29, 2007
1,278
14
San Francisco, CA
Back to the heat thing. I noticed that it feels warm to the touch, but I also was under the impression that aluminum is a better choice for dissepating (spelling) the heat. When the system goes to sleep mode it becomes cool. When I'm walking out the door for work in the morning I tend to put my new IMac to sleep...not sure that it's necessary, but I do.
 

aLoC

macrumors 6502a
Nov 10, 2006
728
0
I'd say the opposite... I owned a 24" white for a year and now I have the 24" Alu and it is noticably cooler along the top edge above the screen. The white used to get really hot along the top but not the Alu.
 

AlanTheBrit

macrumors member
Apr 13, 2007
46
0
Runcorn, Merseyside UK
Based on comparing a last gen 20'' iMac (2.16 GHz) to the new iMacs at the Apple store, the last gen iMacs run a lot cooler. The new "thinner" casing probably contributes to the AL iMacs running hotter to the touch.

Did the iMacs really need to be made thinner? As far as I can tell, the form factor doesn't change drastically, as a result. Unless doing a side-by-side comparison, does the thinner depth make a difference in the look of the computer?

Might it have been a better design choice to leave the case the same size, either allowing for a cooler-running machine, or the possibility of using a more robust graphics card, or CPU, etc.?

In short, do the iMacs "need" to be "thinner"? Does form begin to impede function, in this case?
Thinner can be better; the chimney (upward rush) effect is potent!
Despite external cladding heat; rest assured the internal components are just fine!
AlanTheBrit:)