Thunderbolt Display fan noise YES or NO?

duffer6

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Feb 13, 2011
270
5
I have a TBD connected to my 17" late 2011 MBP. MY TBD does get warm. Typically if I am facing the display the left side at the underside bottom portion of the bezel gets warm, not overly hot but warm. The right underside bottom portion stays very cool. I assume that the difference in temp is due to the power supply being located on the left side (facing the montior) but my QUESTIONS IS: I don't hear the internal fan at all. I assume the fan is working but I have yet to hear it turn on or draw any attention to itself, shoudl I be concerned?

Thanks.
 
Last edited:

Lennyvalentin

macrumors 65816
Apr 25, 2011
1,429
740
Based on what you've written I don't see any cause for concern. The fan is a large-diameter blower that can run at very low speed, making it pretty much inaudible (unless something's wrong with the hardware itself), so that you hear it isn't so strange. :) It's meant to be that way.

If you want to test for the operational status of the fan, just hold your hand under the left side of the device, the speaker grille there also functions as exhaust vent. If your hand is slightly moist it's easier to feel the draft of air.

Also note that the running temperature of the monitor varies quite significantly by monitor brightness. If you whack brightness to max you'll burn a LOT more power, and the monitor will run much hotter than if you lower the brightness. Btw, max brightness on the monitor reduces image quality in most viewing scenarios causing colors and black levels to wash out, unless it's really really bright in your viewing location...

Also, running the backlight at max intensity wears the lightbars and power supply components faster (as well as the fan, since it'll also have to spin faster to deal with the increased heat.)
 

thekev

macrumors 604
Aug 5, 2010
6,721
1,820
I agree with regarding not running it at maximum brightness. Max brightness is pointless anyway as it's a moving target. Personally I pick a brightness target that the display will be able to hit for a long period of time, so in terms of settings, it's turned down considerably when new, then much higher a year or two later as the relative brightness degrades over time.
 

duffer6

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Feb 13, 2011
270
5
Thank you Lenny for your extensive insight. Much appreciated. Curious your thoughts I typically keep the monitor's brightness at "3 notches" below full brightness." With 16 notches of brightness I am sitting on notch 13/16. Where do you typical have your brightness set and do you have a specific recommendation.

Once again thanks for the great reply!

Based on what you've written I don't see any cause for concern. The fan is a large-diameter blower that can run at very low speed, making it pretty much inaudible (unless something's wrong with the hardware itself), so that you hear it isn't so strange. :) It's meant to be that way.

If you want to test for the operational status of the fan, just hold your hand under the left side of the device, the speaker grille there also functions as exhaust vent. If your hand is slightly moist it's easier to feel the draft of air.

Also note that the running temperature of the monitor varies quite significantly by monitor brightness. If you whack brightness to max you'll burn a LOT more power, and the monitor will run much hotter than if you lower the brightness. Btw, max brightness on the monitor reduces image quality in most viewing scenarios causing colors and black levels to wash out, unless it's really really bright in your viewing location...

Also, running the backlight at max intensity wears the lightbars and power supply components faster (as well as the fan, since it'll also have to spin faster to deal with the increased heat.)
 

jterp7

macrumors 6502a
Oct 26, 2011
905
35
Thank you Lenny for your extensive insight. Much appreciated. Curious your thoughts I typically keep the monitor's brightness at "3 notches" below full brightness." With 16 notches of brightness I am sitting on notch 13/16. Where do you typical have your brightness set and do you have a specific recommendation.

Once again thanks for the great reply!
I probably wouldn't have noticed it at all if I hadn't read the threads. But now I do notice when it turns on. Nothing major unless you sit in a dead silent room, but yes there is a fan and yes you can hear it spinning. I use at 8/16 at night with the overhead light on, but in the daytime I find myself boosting it to 13 or 14 depending on use.