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Switcher Hangout The place for switchers to discuss their new machines, and how to work with OS X. General support can be had here for newbie stuff, like "How do I restart my new iMac?" :)

New MBP runs hot when streaming video


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L*F*A

 
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Hey there.

Bought a new MBP a few weeks ago (yep, my first Mac - yay!) - the 15" 2.2 GHz w/ AMD Radeon HD 6750M with 1GB GDDR5. I've noticed within several minutes of streaming video (usually something in HD via my SlingBox) the area above the F1-F3 keys on both sides of the case gets extremely hot, hot enough that I'd burn my finger if I touched it for a few seconds. Is this normal for this laptop & graphics card?

FWIW, I found other forum posts describing a similar issue, but all of the instances I read were related to older machines that were likely clogged with dust, which mine isn't... or at least it shouldn't be at only four weeks old.

And related to the heat, if it isn't a defect and is something I have to deal with, what's the most effective remedy?

Thanks.
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chscag

 
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Streaming videos will ramp up the GPU and CPU along with the fans. It's normal and should not cause concern. Your MBP will shut itself down if the temperature exceeds safe levels. Buy yourself a notebook stand and use it. That will serve two purposes: Let air flow under and around the machine and give you some protection from a nasty spill.

BTW, spills are probably the number one killer of MacBooks and MacBook Pros.
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L*F*A

 
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So "too hot to touch" is actually normal? That's disappointing.

Other 2011 MBP owners: I'd like to hear whether you're experiencing the same thing.
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cwa107

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by L*F*A View Post
So "too hot to touch" is actually normal? That's disappointing.

Other 2011 MBP owners: I'd like to hear whether you're experiencing the same thing.
Yep. Same in my last 2 MacBook Pros. It gets hot in that area because that's where the GPU and CPU are. Streaming and decompressing HD video is fairly taxing, and aluminum is an excellent conductor. I wouldn't describe it as "too hot to touch" - certainly extremely uncomfortable, but it wouldn't burn you.

Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!
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chas_m

 
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Welcome to Flash! Now block it.

PS. You are confusing "my MacBook Pro dissipates heat through the aluminum chassis" with "My MacBook Pro gets hot." If the CHASSIS is hot, that means the motherboard is NOT, to coin a rhyme. This is part of how the MBP cools itself so that it doesn't have to work the fans harder. Flash of course taxes the system terribly, but that's Adobe for ya.

Switch to HTML5 where you can and prepare to be amazed at how much quieter (AND cooler) your MBP becomes.
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FeatherPix

 
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Exactly one week ago I purchased my first Mac, a MacBook Pro 15" top of the line. 2 days after I bought it, I took it back to the store because it was soooo hot underneath where the processors are that it WOULD burn you if you touched it longer than 1-2 seconds. They ran tests on it, and the tests came back normal, but the guy I was dealing with could tell I was not happy. The manager came out and offered me a new machine which I readily accepted. This one does NOT get nearly as hot as that one. So....if I were you...I'd have it looked at It is NOT normal...and certainly not acceptable.
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qwagmire

 
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As a tag on to this, what is a good cooler stand out there?
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chas_m

 
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Anything that allows air to flow underneath the computer is a "good" cooler stand. Avoid the ones with their own fans -- they're noisy, cheap and don't really do any more good than just free-flowing air.

PS. This is why Apple never EVER refers to their portable computers as "laptops" -- they are "notebooks" (a trend that's catching on with other manufacturers). Gotta keep the boys (or girl) safe, if you catch my drift and I think you do.
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qwagmire

 
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My cousin had a Logitech Lapdesk N700 for his notebook that I borrowed (and ordered ). Very comfortable, and it comes with a nice little speaker system that is a minor upgrade to the notebook system with volume controls and mute, and a quiet fan with an off on switch. The fan isn't a high flow deal, just enough to promote some airflow.

But the Lapdesk itself is pretty comfortable. The bottom is padded and the material is designed to help promote airflow. Its great so far sitting on the couch, and on the table is has an angle that eases typing.

Even if the speakers and fan eventually crap out on it, I think its what I wanted.
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PatM

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chas_m View Post
Welcome to Flash! Now block it.

Switch to HTML5 where you can and prepare to be amazed at how much quieter (AND cooler) your MBP becomes.
Good Sunday chas_m. I was re-reading your post in this thread regarding HTML5 versus Flash. I am interested in finding out more about this. Would you know where I could find out more information about this?

Regards,

Pat

15 " 2013 MBP OS X Ver. 10.9.1 16 GB Memory, 500 GB SSD, Retina, 2.3 Ghz I7, 30GB IPhone 5, 2012 Mini Cooper JCW Coupe, 2014 Toyota Corolla, 2007 Trailblazer, 2 RC Planes, 1 fantastic wife who puts up with my toys. Still Married After 30 Years.
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ronin67

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by L*F*A View Post
Hey there.

Bought a new MBP a few weeks ago (yep, my first Mac - yay!) - the 15" 2.2 GHz w/ AMD Radeon HD 6750M with 1GB GDDR5. I've noticed within several minutes of streaming video (usually something in HD via my SlingBox) the area above the F1-F3 keys on both sides of the case gets extremely hot, hot enough that I'd burn my finger if I touched it for a few seconds. Is this normal for this laptop & graphics card?

FWIW, I found other forum posts describing a similar issue, but all of the instances I read were related to older machines that were likely clogged with dust, which mine isn't... or at least it shouldn't be at only four weeks old.

And related to the heat, if it isn't a defect and is something I have to deal with, what's the most effective remedy?





Thanks.

As stated by others, this is normal. I have the same issue when I am burning DVDs I bought into "Ripit". The fans rev up pretty fast. The same also occurs when I run "Handbrake" to change the DVD movie to MP4 format.

The best way to deal with this is a laptop stand, one that has fans build in (plugged into USB port to activate fans). Even though the internal cooling fans speed up, the stand I use constantly blows air to cool my MBP (Same model MacBook Pro you have plus upgraded 7200 rpm HD and 8 GB of RAM). If you would like the make and model stand I use, I would be glad to tell you.


May God Bless and congrats on the new MBP!

Ed
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Oneironaut

 
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Remember that MBP's are just as powerful as most desktop computers and are designed to work that hard. Also notice that they're called "notebooks" and not "laptops" because they do get hot enough to burn your thighs if you sit with one on your lap. So a very hot MBP is nothing new. But if you really feel it's dangerously hot, have it checked out and a replacement will be very easy to get.

I have the Belkin cooling stand that is raised up and has a fan in the center of it. That, along with the fans within the computer, keep things pretty steady.

My MBP can get to 80-90 degrees Celsius when transcoding a lot of video, which is pretty hot. But this is still normal.
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L*F*A

 
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Hi folks. Here's an update for y'all on the hot spot I reported earlier:

The video died last week. I was streaming a baseball game when the screen went black. The picture came back momentarily, but permanently quit a few seconds later. I tried to reboot the computer a couple times and it seemed to boot but without picture. I took it to an Apple store the following day and by that point it wouldn't reliably boot. They pulled my hard drive and verified the data was intact, then sent the computer out for servicing.

I got it back yesterday. The final repair summary says they replaced the main logic board and the display assembly. The symptoms are listed as "No Power/No Light" (logic board) and "No Power/Power Light Issue" (display assembly).

I used it last night and noticed that hot spot I originally reported isn't nearly as hot anymore. That spot is now mildly warm to the touch. I noticed this after streaming a baseball game and other video for roughly 2.5 hours, which previously would've been sufficient for that spot to start cooking.

I appreciate those who chimed in and tried to help identify the issue and/or alleviate my concerns about the hot spot. I'm thankful my MBP experienced this failure, particularly now while still under warranty, because it suggests my hot-spot symptoms were not normal and thus shouldn't have been tolerated as such, which it seems I was inclined to do based on the majority of feedback here. It's tough to gauge what is and isn't normal without experiencing certain symptoms first hand. To anyone experiencing MBP symptoms that are inconsistent with what you expect, particularly while it's still under warranty, I suggest you have it serviced or at least get a first-hand second opinion.
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chscag

 
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Thanks for posting back. We receive numerous inquiries from folks who are concerned about their MacBook or MacBook Pro and heat build up. And of course, this is a normal reaction. Most of the time, however, it's because the individual is worried there may be something wrong. Trying to separate what's normal from not normal is difficult at best especially in a forum environment.

In your situation there was definitely a malfunction which manifested itself in a total shutdown and failure. And yes, especially if the machine is under warranty it's best to take it to Apple and let the service technicians determine if something is indeed wrong.

Anyway, I'm glad to hear that it's all sorted out and you have a new MacBook Pro. (New logic board and display.)
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MacInWin

 
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I use iStatMenus to monitor my MBP. It shows the temperatures of major components. I've noticed that flash video and both Parallels and VMWare emulators drive up the temps pretty quickly. It also got pretty hot when I first loaded Lion and Spotlight was updating. If you are worried about temps, yoiu might give it a try.
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