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Thread: Questions

  1. #1


    Member Since
    Jun 03, 2010
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    Hey all
    I am thinking seriously about a Mac. I do a lot of graphic art and video editing and have always heard of the Macs prowess in this area. After the latest Windows nightmare in which I lost nearly everything, I'm fed up.

    Forgive me if this is a little lengthy but I do have some questions and any replies would be greatly appreciated.

    I was about to buy a 27" imac with the quad core until I began to do some research. This is a lot of money. I read here that the yellow screen issue has been resolved. I suppose that what I am looking for is some reassurance there, but what I am concerned about is heat. These things get really hot in that confined space just sitting idle, I can only image what it does when you load it hard. Heat is the enemy of printed boards, doesn't matter who makes it. So my concern is longevity (Remember X-box?). Are there issues with this?

    I am up in the air right now as to whether I will get the iMac or Mac Pro. The iMac would suffice for now, but is not upgradeable except for memory. The Pro is great for this but very expensive. So, to save a little dough (as I want a large display), I was thinking of a 32" LCD TV. Would this be advisable or should I just bite the bullet and pay the $1.8K for the monitor if I go with the Pro?

    Thanks

  2. #2

    Raz0rEdge's Avatar
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    The screen issues associated with the 27" iMac's are indeed behind us..

    The iMac sucks in cold air from the bottom and dispels the hotter air from the top. As long as you put the iMac on an open desk you should have no problems. Even under heavy load, the system will be fine..but common sense goes along with this..don't put the iMac in a confined desk or cupboard with very little to no air flow and expect everything to work without any glitches..

    The Mac Pro's are due an update, if they already haven't gotten it, so you should definitely hold off on buying one right now..and they cost a VERY pretty penny and indeed are upgradable like any PC should be.

    My 27" iMac is perfect for me..and I have the stock 4GB of memory right now that I might upgrade to 8GB at some point..

    Regards

  3. #3

    Chef_eam's Avatar
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    Sitting idle right now my CPU cores are at 100F (not really that hot). I do 3D rendering and under a heavy load, I rarely see them go above 175F. I would not say that the quad core iMacs get overly hot under load.

  4. #4

    MacShane's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chef_eam View Post
    Sitting idle right now my CPU cores are at 100F (not really that hot). I do 3D rendering and under a heavy load, I rarely see them go above 175F. I would not say that the quad core iMacs get overly hot under load.
    Don't mean to hijack, but how the heck do you keep tabs on the temp of your CPU?

  5. #5


    Member Since
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  6. #6


    Member Since
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    Quote Originally Posted by MacShane View Post
    Don't mean to hijack, but how the heck do you keep tabs on the temp of your CPU?
    There is an entire thread on this board dedicated to the myth of "overheating" on the Mac. It's a huge thing with PC people, but -- seriously -- not something ANY Mac owner should concern themselves with at all.

    To answer your question, there are temp sensors throughout most Mac models because -- and I know this blows some people's minds -- Apple's engineers actually thought about temperature control. Thus, there are several third-party software tools that will show you the temperature(s).

    However, again -- because some people really just don't seem to grasp this -- it's covered. You don't need to think about this. Apple actually knows what they are doing when they design the machine and they know how to disperse heat properly. Unless you are doing something incredibly stupid (like blocking the vents), or you have an actual DEFECTIVE unit (the latter, at least, is really very very rare), your Mac can handle the heat. There's even a failsafe built-in; should the Mac ever overheat (which, one more time, will never happen to you apart from the above exceptions), it will simply shut down to protect the processor.

    The other thing people don't seem to quite understand is that computers aren't people. What generally happens when someone foolishly downloads one of these third-party temp sensors is they look at the CPU temperature (let's use mine at this moment as an example) and it reads 156F and they **FREAK OUT** because that seems hot to them. Suffice to say that it's not hot at all for a computer -- perfectly normal actually.

    They then download something to make the fans run harder all the time because they think they're in imminent danger of "meltdown," thus not only defeating Apple's careful engineering, plus adding additional noise (which is a detriment to the whole "Mac experience"), but also wearing out the very fans that should be protecting your machine so that they give out *sooner* than they otherwise would have.

    Hopefully by now you see where I'm going with this.

    In short, the Mac is a very well-designed and carefully-engineered machine, not a box-o-crap some moron put together out of off-the-shelf parts. Defects and failures are RARE and your chances of encountering one is very low unless you undermine the product's design in some fashion. Temperature is really not something you should spend any time thinking about. Just enjoy the machine.

  7. #7


    Member Since
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChaosTheory View Post
    I am up in the air right now as to whether I will get the iMac or Mac Pro. The iMac would suffice for now, but is not upgradeable except for memory. The Pro is great for this but very expensive.
    At this particular moment in time, the iMac is in almost every way a superior computer. Hopefully the Mac Pro will receive a long-overdue update at some point soon, but as of this writing the iMac is the better value.

    So, to save a little dough (as I want a large display), I was thinking of a 32" LCD TV.
    Size isn't everything. The resolution of most 32" LCD TVs is 1280x720 ... far below the resolution of the 27" iMac, not to mention the screen is nowhere near as high-quality.

  8. #8

    IvanLasston's Avatar
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    Hi Chas - first let me say I love your passion for the Mac and for the most part I agree with you. Most Macs are well built and well thought out. Also most people worrying don't understand what is an acceptable temperature range. For example - I saw a thread where one guy was worried because his CPU was hitting temps at 105 degrees - 10 degrees over 95 degrees operating temperature and at Tjmax. The CPU temperature is not the operating temperature, nor is Tjmax the maximum operating temperature.

    That being said - there are plenty of examples of overheating Mac products.
    Apple Comes Through, Resolving Overheating iMac Problem
    Magsafe - Appledefects
    What's killing Apple's Time Capsules after 18 months? | Technology | guardian.co.uk

    All I am saying is don't just dismiss overheating out of hand because you never experienced it. It is a problem with all electronics - if you've ever done manufacturing you'll know no matter how good your quality control is - there are still outliers, and when you sell consumer electronics by the millions a few hundred outliers isn't a lot statistically unless you happen to be one of those people who got a bad part.

    Again - Chas is mostly right - you need to understand what an acceptable temperature range is for the part you are monitoring - once you understand that then if you do see too high temperatures you know something is wrong. A fan could have gone out, too much dust in the system, etc but mostly stuff should just work.

  9. #9


    Member Since
    Jun 03, 2010
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    Cool, thanks everyone. Your replies cleared up a lot for me. I am accustomed to PCs and this is new territory. Having been burned in the past (pun intended), there were some things that I was skeptical about, but you folks have cleared it up. Thanks again.

  10. #10

    MacShane's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chas_m View Post
    There is an entire thread on this board dedicated to the myth of "overheating" on the Mac. It's a huge thing with PC people, but -- seriously -- not something ANY Mac owner should concern themselves with at all.

    To answer your question, there are temp sensors throughout most Mac models because -- and I know this blows some people's minds -- Apple's engineers actually thought about temperature control. Thus, there are several third-party software tools that will show you the temperature(s).

    However, again -- because some people really just don't seem to grasp this -- it's covered. You don't need to think about this. Apple actually knows what they are doing when they design the machine and they know how to disperse heat properly. Unless you are doing something incredibly stupid (like blocking the vents), or you have an actual DEFECTIVE unit (the latter, at least, is really very very rare), your Mac can handle the heat. There's even a failsafe built-in; should the Mac ever overheat (which, one more time, will never happen to you apart from the above exceptions), it will simply shut down to protect the processor.

    The other thing people don't seem to quite understand is that computers aren't people. What generally happens when someone foolishly downloads one of these third-party temp sensors is they look at the CPU temperature (let's use mine at this moment as an example) and it reads 156F and they **FREAK OUT** because that seems hot to them. Suffice to say that it's not hot at all for a computer -- perfectly normal actually.

    They then download something to make the fans run harder all the time because they think they're in imminent danger of "meltdown," thus not only defeating Apple's careful engineering, plus adding additional noise (which is a detriment to the whole "Mac experience"), but also wearing out the very fans that should be protecting your machine so that they give out *sooner* than they otherwise would have.

    Hopefully by now you see where I'm going with this.

    In short, the Mac is a very well-designed and carefully-engineered machine, not a box-o-crap some moron put together out of off-the-shelf parts. Defects and failures are RARE and your chances of encountering one is very low unless you undermine the product's design in some fashion. Temperature is really not something you should spend any time thinking about. Just enjoy the machine.
    Ah...I'm not worried. I was just curious as to how (and why, unless you're overclocking) you'd keep tabs on the CPU, because I know that feature is definitely not part of "About This Mac".

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