View Full Version : Apple PowerBook Fan Question

21st June 2004, 05:19 AM
Hey guys! I'm new here! I had a question regarding the 15inch PowerBooks (the one I am getting, soon). I was wondering, how many fans does the PowerBook have and is there any way to control when the fans turn on? Like, for example, when the PowerBook reaches a certain temperature, it activated to cool...

21st June 2004, 07:07 AM
hey Lasha - welcome to AppleTalk :)

On my 17" (and i assume it is the same on yours) the fans don't switch on until the cpu temp reaches 60 degrees. They'll switch off again once the temp goes down to 55.

... that's what i've noticed anyway. :)

21st June 2004, 07:21 AM
Oh okay, cool! Also, is there any way at all to control what temperature the fans turn on? If not, I don't mind.

When the Fans turn on, once necessary, do they get really loud? I heard some people saying that they do.

PS. I don't have a PowerBook yet, but I am looking forward to one this summer since I'm getting a job at the local computer store. Although, I am also waiting on Apple to announce the new PowerBook G5s.

Glad to be part of this community. :)

21st June 2004, 08:44 AM
The fan in my 1Ghz Albook isn't too noisy, but noticable when it turns on. You can modify settings in OSX to change when it's switched on, but I wouldn't recommend it, as if you, say, upped the temp, you'd probably end up frying the Powerbook.

Some cooling tips though. I sit my Powerbook on an old, metal SCSI drive box, which absorbs some of the heat. Another trick is to get a laptop cooler which has fans. A cheaper option for doing the same thing is to mount the Powerbook on something like an iCurve and use, if you can find one, a small but quiet desk fan to cool underneath it. I use the latter method when I was encoding video for hours at a time, and it was the most effective.

21st June 2004, 09:16 AM

Yea, I've come up with some really weird methods of keeping an iBook, or a PowerBook cool. I can't wait till I get mine! I have so much planned for it! :)

21st June 2004, 10:00 AM
a good idea to keep it cool is a stand, either an icurve liek what i use ( fan never comes on anymore) or an iBreeze type of stand which has 2 fans built into it....

you can get generic brand Ibreeze stands from the us for $12 + $20 (US$) shipping so $32 US = ~ $50 australian... maybe a bit less...

Otherwise an icurve is $90... pretty expensive.. i got mine for $50!

21st June 2004, 03:26 PM
I think you'll find it has 2 fans according to the service guides...

27th June 2004, 10:19 AM
My 15" PowerBook's fan kicks in at about 60C and sounds quieter than the fan that runs on my housemate's Sony VAIO from the moment you turn it on. Let's not even talk about the second fan that starts on the VAIO when you start playing a 3D game... it makes the first one sound quiet.

There is a second fan on the PowerBook, but in my experience it very rarely comes on, and it's just as quiet as the first one.

27th June 2004, 11:14 AM
There a number of PC retailers that sell notebook 'cooling pads', which are basically a thin slab of aluminium that props the notebook up off a surface. Some have fans in the base, powered by USB.

Examples here (http://www.auspcmarket.com.au/index.php?redir=http://www.auspcmarket.com.au/show_product_info.php?code=CS-CMPNCU51) and here. (http://www.coolpc.com.au/catalog/product_info.php?products_id=682)

But notebooks are designed to run hot, so you shouldn't need this unless the machine becomes unbearable.


27th June 2004, 11:33 AM
well.. ive had my powerbook for a couple of days now and ive only heard a fan come on when i was playing quake3 with no sound (the sound on quake3 overrides the fan noise believe me)

27th June 2004, 01:25 PM
yeah playing games will make the fan come on, as will video encoding, things like FCP, etc

basically processor intensive tasks.

The powerbook because it is made of aluminum is sort of it's own heat sink, the metal case helps diffuse the heat and if there's a good airflow around the powerbook it all works fine.

Yes airflow is very important, my cousin who shall remain nameless was watching a movie on his 17" PowerBook and had it resting on a pile of clothes. The next day when he booted it up, his airport card didn't show up in the System Profiler and devices kept dropping out. Basically he fried his logic board.

Always make sure you have good airflow around your PowerBook! The feet are there for a reason: to lift the PB slightly off the desk to allow airflow underneath.

27th June 2004, 03:43 PM
I suggest taking to books of equal size, aproximately 300+ pages each and putting one on the left, and one on the right leaving a lot of space for the Notebook to "breathe" in.

http://www.wrestlingvg.com/uploader/files/...bookairflow.JPG (http://www.wrestlingvg.com/uploader/files/images/notebookairflow.JPG)

The two rectangles on the sides of the notebook are books...forgot to add it...

28th June 2004, 07:40 AM
NIDER, if your cousin should have read the manual.

It CLEARLY states that you should never rest your powerbook on pillows, blankets etc, because they block the side air vents.... i did it once with my older powerbook an i was wondering why it heated up so much.... then by chance when i bought my new one i read the manaul front to back and found that out... <-- probably the most important piece of info in there... Cos i always used to do that too&#33; i used to watch DVD&#39;s in my bed etc...


I used to used uni books to keep the PB elevated then i got an icurve (again) and the fan never comes on...

28th June 2004, 11:34 AM
Lol i know I gave him a fair wasting when he told me what he&#39;d done. Fool&#33; lol