2007 Macbook High CPU Temps

Discussion in 'Computer Hardware, Devices and Accessories' started by Tom Bombadildo, Sep 1, 2017.

  1. Tom Bombadildo
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    I forgot
    So a few weeks ago I got a 2007 Macbook for fairly cheap (this particular model: everymac.com/systems/apple/macbook/specs/macbook-core-2-duo-2.0-white-13-mid-2007-specs.html but with 2GB of RAM and a 500GB HDD). After playing with it the past few weeks, installing Windows 7 and Linux Mint and such, I'm having an issue with the CPU Temps on this thing.

    Now, when I first got it I had the same issues, the CPU fan would constantly be on, various Temp monitors would read temps up to 85C despite doing nearly nothing, so I figured it'd just need to have the thermal paste replaced. I did that about a week ago, and despite that the Temps still range from 60C-80C across all three OS's while doing nothing more than maybe having Firefox open with two tabs, having Steam open at the same time. I've checked CPU usage when it gets towards the higher temps, and it's almost never over 15-20%. The fan still appears to be functioning properly, it goes full blast no problem and there's good airflow, and Temps never reach the max TDP which is 100C for this particular CPU. I've also reset the SMC, which Apple claims helps, but did nothing as well.

    I know these older Macbooks can get pretty hot, but never having one myself until now I'm not sure if these are all that "normal", or at least normal for a laptop that's 10 years old. Which I suppose would be my question, are these Temps normal, or is there something else wrong with this particular Macbook?
     
  2. GearCross

    GearCross GBAtemp Regular

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    Have you checked if the heat-sink is properly tightened and making good contact with the CPU? You can try and bend the tabs that have the screws backwards ever so slightly. The T7x00 series of CPUs were a bit hot, I had a T7500 on my old laptop and I remember having somewhat high temps. Swapping for a T8300 improved dramatically.

    Also, I'm not sure if you can do that on a Mac, but you can try undervolting the CPU. On the T8300 I managed to shave off nearly 300mV, which further yielded a very large drop in temps.


    For an apples to apples comparison, my current Late 2011 13" MBP easily hits 80C under light load. My other guess is that it's a "feature".
     
    Last edited by GearCross, Sep 1, 2017
  3. Tom Bombadildo
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    I forgot
    The heatsink is tightened properly, yeah.

    I know these C2D can get a bit hot, just not used to seeing it range from 60-80C doing absolutely nothing. I've got a couple laptops with a a t7700 in it, and it never got as hot 75C, even under load.

    I could try undervolting it, I know of a couple ways to do it so I can give it a try and see what happens.
     
  4. Byokugen

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    Just a bit to the right, or was left...
    Either try better thermal paste, or your temp sensor is faulty. You have IR thermal sensor? That thing you point to read temps? Or a temp probe on multimeter?
     
  5. Tom Bombadildo
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    I forgot
    I'm using Arctic MX-4, so it's definitely not the thermal paste.

    As to Temp sensor, I've got a multimeter I can use to check but I highly doubt the Temp sensors are faulty, as the air being pushed out by the fan is definitely warm enough to be 60-80C
     
  6. gnmmarechal

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    Hmm, that's an odd issue. It should be an issue with the cooling system. Are the fans clean? I've had a graphics card fail randomly on a desktop before, turns out its fan was full of dust and such, and it would overheat and stop working. Once the fans got cleaned, it never had an issue again.
     
  7. Tom Bombadildo
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    Tom Bombadildo G'nome

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    I forgot
    The fan was a bit dirty when I pulled it apart, but I cleaned it up before putting it back together, it's reasonably clean now, which is why I'm baffled at these temps.
     
  8. gnmmarechal

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    That's an odd issue alright. Dunno, could the CPU itself be failing and for some reason heating up more?
     
  9. Tumoche

    Tumoche GBAtemp Regular

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    I also have a C2D macbook, a late 2009 model. It gets pretty hot even doing nothing (55-60c) but not to 80c as yours
     
  10. Tom Bombadildo
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    I don't think it's the CPU failing, it appears to perform just fine (I don't even notice any thermal throttling, if there even is any). It's not unbearably slow and it's never crashed on me, it just gets hot.

    I'm gonna try undervolting it a bit, see how it performs after messing with voltage settings.
     
  11. Tumoche

    Tumoche GBAtemp Regular

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    How do you undervolt a macbook? It has no bios so it must be a program. Which it is?
     
  12. Tom Bombadildo
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    I forgot
    I'm running Windows 7, so I'm using NHC to set the voltage per clock multiplier.

    I know OSX has Coolbook, but it's not free and I'm not sure if there are any other free alternatives.
     
  13. The Real Jdbye

    The Real Jdbye Always Remember 30/07/08

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    That's a good thing, it means the heatsink is doing its job.
    80C is a little high but it's certainly within normal operating range for x86/x64 CPUs. It's not a particularly efficient architecture although it is getting much better. To the degree that i3 and I think some i5's can actually run fanless these days (although likely with some thermal throttling)
    Generally the older the CPU, the less efficient it will be. That's just the nature of how computers are evolving.
    I wouldn't worry too much unless it overheats/throttles under load.

    For example, my old HP tablet PC had an AMD Turion 64 X2 CPU. These are notorious for having heat problems, and it didn't help that the cooling on the PC was probably not the best. After a year or two of use it would overheat and shut down just from watching 480p YouTube, I had to use 360p just to keep it from doing that.
    I had it repaired twice (they replaced the mobo) and the 3rd time it happened about 4.5 years after the purchase I requested a partial refund, since that's how the law works over here. (Warranty is 5 years on most things by law)
    I had SpeedFan installed to monitor the temps, and the CPU cores would hover around 75-80C when I wasn't doing anything. As soon as I tried to watch 480p YouTube the temps would rapidly climb until they reached about 95-100C and the computer shut down.

    I think SpeedFan actually measures a little low, the real temps were probably about 5-10C higher as the thermal shutoff was 105C IIRC.
    Core Temp seems more accurate, but I don't like it as much, as it doesn't measure temps for everything.
    What program do you use to measure the temps?
     
    Last edited by The Real Jdbye, Sep 1, 2017
  14. Tom Bombadildo
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    I forgot
    Thing is, I have other similarly aged laptops and PCs that don't even come close to 80C under normal use, laptops included, which is why I feel like this definitely isn't a "normal" circumstance. As mentioned, I have a laptop running a T7700 and it doesn't even touch 75C, let alone 80C. I know the TDP for this particular CPU is 100C, but 80C spikes seem way too high for web browsing/ <20% CPU usage. I suppose it is possible the heatsink and fan in this Macbook are simply garbage, which would be a fair explanation, I just expected something a little...better.

    I'm using Coretemp to monitor Temps in Windows, Hardware Monitor in OSX, and psensor in Linux, and they all report similar temps.


    After doing some undervolting, testing it out a bit, I've got it idling at a stable 58C now, which is a huge improvement from constantly going between 60-70C idle. Launching web browsers brings it up to 75C now, but it pops back down to 60-65C during normal usage which is good.
     
    Last edited by Tom Bombadildo, Sep 1, 2017
  15. The Real Jdbye

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    Are they as thin as the MacBook? That makes a huge difference. Thinner means less space for a heatsink, and no amount of air flow can compensate for an undersized heatsink.

    In my experience, even a low CPU load like 20% will cause temps to go up a lot compared to idle, but it's not a linear increase. The temps increase more at the lower end of CPU usage, and less at the higher end of CPU usage. Which might be explained by how dynamic frequency scaling quickly jumps to a higher clock even at low CPU usage.
     
  16. nero99

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    Buy a new heat sink for it. You'd be surprised at how often it's the copper pipe that is some how failing on old laptops. Had to swap out my ex girlfriends 2009 Mack book heat sink and everything was nice and cool.
     
  17. gnmmarechal

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    Indeed, the low-power U series 7th generation Intel Core i5 CPU in the Surface Pro 2017 runs fanless. Only the i7 model has fans.
     
  18. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

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    You say you cleaned the fan but did you also clean the rest of the path? On those occasions where I have sullied my tools with apple's offerings I have quite often pulled out a cat worth of fur from the vents which were still passing some through. Don't know that I have pulled apart a 2007 vintage one specifically (one was mid range core 2 with 2 gigs of RAM before I upgraded it so could well be).
     
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