Vibrating keyboard at med-to-hi fan RPMs

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by procyonx86, Nov 25, 2008.

  1. procyonx86 macrumors member

    Nov 25, 2008
    Hi everyone, longtime lurker, first time poster here.

    I recently got a 2.4 GHz Unibody MBP, and I'm loving it. However, I have noticed that whenever my fans start going above the normal speed of 2000 RPM, I can feel a slight vibration on the left side of my keyboard. At 3000 RPM, I can barely feel it with the tips of my fingers, but at 4000 RPM it becomes very noticeable. Can you fellow Late 2008 MBP owners confirm whether this is normal? I haven't managed to find any useful info via Google.

    It's not a big problem, but it does detract from the otherwise solid feel of my MBP.

    Thanks in advance!
  2. clyde2801 macrumors 601


    Mar 6, 2008
    In the land of no hills and red dirt.
    It's obviously the hard drive. Have you tried tightening the little phillips screw that holds it in place?

    If the drive is going full blast, you're probably going to feel a little vibration.
  3. procyonx86 thread starter macrumors member

    Nov 25, 2008

    No, it's the fans, not the hard drive. I installed smcFanControl and played with the fan settings for a bit. At that time there were no programs running, so there was no significant hard drive activity.

    My MBP is the stock one with the 5400 RPM drive. Besides, my first day of using it involved copying large amounts of data to its hard drive, and during that time I felt no vibration at all.

    In short, it's definitely the fans.

    The question is, is this normal?
  4. J the Ninja macrumors 68000

    Jul 14, 2008
    Ok, I just punched mine to 6200rpm as a test (in class, because I love you), and yeah there is a bit of vibration on the left side. Not too bad, but you can definitely feel it.
  5. procyonx86 thread starter macrumors member

    Nov 25, 2008
    J the Ninja,

    Thanks for trying it out and letting me know. Left side too eh? Funny, why does the left make vibrations (even at 3000 RPM), while the right stays silent even at 6000 RPM? I also notice that the left fan is louder than the right, though I'm not sure why.

    Can anyone else with an MBP please confirm this?

    Thanks in advance.
  6. J the Ninja macrumors 68000

    Jul 14, 2008
    The "right fan" isn't really on the right like the old MBP and the PBG4. It's only "right" in the sense that it sits toward the right of the other fan. It's actually somewhere around the "Y" key. The other one is under the "Q" or so, maybe a little higher:


    If you flip the machine up and look into the vent with the lid around 90 degrees, you should be able to see the heatsinks (if the keyboard lights are on, it will be a little easier to see, since the lights spray off into the machine somewhat).
  7. procyonx86 thread starter macrumors member

    Nov 25, 2008
    Hmm, I see. Should've realized that sooner, since I'm sure I saw that image before. Looks like the left and right fans rotate in opposite directions; wonder if it has anything to do with why only the left fan causes any vibration?

    Please, can anyone else confirm whether the vibration is normal? If it's not, I'm taking it to an AASP as fast as I can (no Apple store in my country).
  8. procyonx86 thread starter macrumors member

    Nov 25, 2008

    Ok guys, my left fan just croaked. I mean literally. It makes strange croak-like noises, and every time it does that, the keyboard buttons above it vibrates, and they get warm (!!). It now vibrates even at 2000 RPM. So if your keyboard vibration becomes perceptible at 3000-4000 RPM, I suggest you take it to the nearest AASP/Apple Store to have it looked at.

    I'm taking it away to the nearest AASP. I'll let you guys know how it goes.

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