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You are here: MacNN Forums > Hardware - Troubleshooting and Discussion > Mac Notebooks > Neat App to turn up your minimun fan speeds

Neat App to turn up your minimun fan speeds
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Oct 13, 2006, 03:09 AM
 
smcFanControl

Apparently 10.4.8 has new code to allow for the control of the minimum fan speeds in MBs and MBPs, and as expected, new apps have began to surface to take advantage of this feature.

I found this one via Apple Support Thread.

The default minimun fan speeds are set to 1,000 rpm. Setting the min speed to 3,000 can reduce temps by as much as 10C, and is still barely audible.

Pretty neat solution to toasty laps. Use at your own risk of course.
     
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Oct 13, 2006, 03:48 AM
 
about time they get a gui for this. anybody try this yet? i dont wanna guinea pig right away.
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Oct 13, 2006, 03:53 AM
 
Ya i have it, it works great, not very loud and i noticed atemp difference in 30 sec. i think there was another post like this earlier today. It works great though
     
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Oct 13, 2006, 03:57 AM
 
That's a very nice app. Certainly a nice idea if you want to use your MB(P) on your lap, want it to be cool and don't mind the additional noise (for example when I'm on the subway). I especially like how it contains no installer, does not install a kext and will reset everything back to the default value upon your next reboot (of course unless you tell it to preserve settings across reboots).

However, I noticed that my MBP's second fan shows it should run at no less than 1000 rpm but the actual read back says 0. And even when I set both fans to 6000 rpm, the second fan stays at zero. Unless this little app has some kind of bug, I'm guessing my GPU fan has kicked the bucket. I'm gonna run the AHT CD and see if it finds any problems. It's kinda funny because I was bothered by weird GPU fan noise for quite some time (threads here, here, and here) until it suddenly stopped. Ever since it's been nice and quiet. Maybe just because it stopped working altogether.
( Last edited by Simon; Oct 13, 2006 at 04:09 AM. )
     
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Oct 13, 2006, 07:22 AM
 
I've been using this app since yesterday. Before that I was using some AppleScript files that put the fan at a constant rpm rate.

After using 4000 rpm as the minimum speed (which you can't hear for example in an open landscape environment as I'm in) I reduced my idle from about 65 C to under 40 C, and the max load (running the yes command) from about 85-88 C to about 71-72 C.

In other words, a pretty sweet deal!

I feel like having a brand new MBP, especially when using the comp on my lap, but also with normal desktop usage when the palmrest used to be sweatingly hot.

So for those that are afraid of testing it, don't be! No kext files, no startup items, just a tiny app that does the job flawlessly!
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Oct 13, 2006, 08:38 AM
 
I've tried it and it does help cool ones lap down. Battery life is probably minimally affected.

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Oct 13, 2006, 05:26 PM
 
I've run it with the handy smcFanControl GUI, and it's made a dramatic improvement in the temperature of my MBP - Mine never got scorchingly hot, but it would get uncomfortable if used on the lap. Now it's greatly improved with keeping the fans at 4k RPM minmum.

Only thing I wonder about is whether running the fans at the higher rate is detrimental to their life, if they were designed to run at a constant 1,000 RPM with short-period bursts only of higher speeds to cool a hot machine down...
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Oct 13, 2006, 08:13 PM
 
My MacBook Pro is reporting one of the fans is at 1004rpm, and varies with load, but the other one is stuck at 0rpm always, regardless of load.

Is a MBP supposed to have two fans?
     
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Oct 13, 2006, 09:22 PM
 
any word if this can work on a g4 powerbook? i know the program is written for MBP, but my powerbook can get hot.

edit

it would be nice to be able to turn the fans on and off, or make them run longer. maybe someone can make a hack for ppc?
( Last edited by FastAMX79; Oct 13, 2006 at 09:43 PM. )
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Oct 14, 2006, 12:59 AM
 
This will also work on an intel iMac if you hack the .plist found in smcFanControl.app/Contents/Resources called Machines.plist

Just add a new child like there are for the macbook/pro and mini, specifying a iMac 4,1 as the Machine, and the number of fans at 2. The iMac's fans routinely run at 1,000 RPM without being audible. I set my max fan speed to 5,000 RPM... Not sure what the REAL max is, but it sure didn't seem to be as loud at 5,000 as my iMac did when I did the SMC firmware upgrade from apple. I set the minimum fan speed at 1,000 (duh). So it's interesting to be able to toy with.

Not sure if there's a practical use for this unless you've managed to permanently overclock your GPU.... and if you have, I want to know how!!

Regards,

JPD

P.S. Only the main fan will go up to 5k... The 2nd fan (I think it's the optical drive fan) will max out at just over 1k...
     
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Oct 14, 2006, 02:20 AM
 
Originally Posted by AquaX
My MacBook Pro is reporting one of the fans is at 1004rpm, and varies with load, but the other one is stuck at 0rpm always, regardless of load.
Is a MBP supposed to have two fans?
Yes, the MBP has two fans.

You seem to be having the same issue I already mentioned above.

Run the Apple Hardware Test (it's on the install DVD) and see what it says. In my case fan no. 2 is constantly at zero and AHT reports there is a motherboard problem. Bingo. As soon as I get my rev B MBP this one is going in for fan repair.
     
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Oct 14, 2006, 02:37 AM
 
Simon, thanks for the info :-)
     
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Oct 14, 2006, 02:42 AM
 
No problem. Let us know what your AHT run says.
     
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Oct 14, 2006, 03:56 AM
 
Originally Posted by FastAMX79
any word if this can work on a g4 powerbook? i know the program is written for MBP, but my powerbook can get hot.

edit

it would be nice to be able to turn the fans on and off, or make them run longer. maybe someone can make a hack for ppc?
Just do the thing that jpdalamar said to do for the iMac, just instead of putting imac4,1, put PowerBook(whatever the model # is). The program starts but my CPU isn't hot enough to get the fans started, so I can't really test it out now.

edit: never mind, that doesn't work. This is made for intel only, I missed that on the homepage.
( Last edited by Velocity211; Oct 14, 2006 at 04:11 AM. )
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Oct 14, 2006, 05:51 AM
 
I just got my MBP after been waiting for a month for the stock to come in. The first thing that I checked was the heat and man it was hot. But lucky saw this post, installed the app, everything is back to normal. Setting the fan at 4000 rpm will not give much audible notice. But anything higher would definately makes an annoying fan noise in a quiet office room. Get this if you have not done so.
     
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Oct 14, 2006, 11:11 AM
 
Does using smcFanControl void your warraanty?
     
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Oct 14, 2006, 01:07 PM
 
Originally Posted by Pao|o
Does using smcFanControl void your warraanty?
No.
     
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Oct 14, 2006, 01:54 PM
 
Obviously, this puts more wear and tear on the fans to spin more often than not. Won't that void the warranty?
     
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Oct 14, 2006, 02:42 PM
 
The question about voiding the warranty is the same as asking if using Seti@home 24/7 void your warranty. I would say Seti is worse as the CPU is at full load all time, in addition to the fans that will spin up.
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Oct 14, 2006, 03:44 PM
 
i suckered myself into using this app and i have to say...

it works pretty well, im impressed at how much cooler my book is at only 3000rpm on each fan. still pretty quiet and LOTS cooler.

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Oct 14, 2006, 03:58 PM
 
Originally Posted by dimplemonkey
Obviously, this puts more wear and tear on the fans to spin more often than not. Won't that void the warranty?
No, the warranty means that Apple guarantees the fans will run for 1 year. If they don't you're entitled to a repair.

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Oct 14, 2006, 10:10 PM
 
Originally Posted by Simon
No problem. Let us know what your AHT run says.
AHT reports a failure of
"4SNS/1/400000000: 'TCOP'"
     
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Oct 15, 2006, 12:03 PM
 
Originally Posted by AquaX
AHT reports a failure of
"4SNS/1/400000000: 'TCOP'"
Which AHT version did you sue?

In my case AHT v3A107 reported
4MOT/1/40000002: Left_Middle-Front
     
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Oct 15, 2006, 02:34 PM
 
My disc is labeled with AHT v3A107 also.
     
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Oct 15, 2006, 07:01 PM
 
app works well on my MB 2.0. at 4000rpm it is barely audible, and stays cool (moreso than the 1.33 iBook i replaced with it )
     
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Oct 15, 2006, 07:33 PM
 
I prefer the PrefPane solution myself. It adjusts the fans based on temp so you don't need to set them to 3000 RPM constantly.
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Oct 15, 2006, 10:20 PM
 
what the hell is the prefpane solution?...

does it involve terminal? because if it doesnt...im alllllll ears.
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Oct 16, 2006, 03:42 AM
 
Originally Posted by Mrjinglesusa
I prefer the PrefPane solution myself. It adjusts the fans based on temp so you don't need to set them to 3000 RPM constantly.
I really don't understand what you're saying.

• What is the pref pane solution?

• Why do you say 'so you don't need to set them to 3000 RPM constantly'? You don't need to set anything constantly. sFC can make your values stick - even across reboots if you want. There's no need to set anything repeatedly.
     
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Oct 16, 2006, 03:59 AM
 
Hi all-
if you look half way down on the forum linked on the first post, you'll see a prefspane solution made by cnadig. I haven't done any test yet to see which one is better but I do like the fact that it does it's thing dynamically.

heres a link to the developers site Lobotomo Software: MoofMenu

silver
( Last edited by silver; Oct 16, 2006 at 04:22 AM. )
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Oct 16, 2006, 04:00 AM
 
Originally Posted by Simon
• Why do you say 'so you don't need to set them to 3000 RPM constantly'? You don't need to set anything constantly. sFC can make your values stick - even across reboots if you want. There's no need to set anything repeatedly.
I think he means that you don't need to set them to a constant 3000RPM.
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Oct 16, 2006, 04:58 AM
 
Hi all-
Ok I installed the preference pane version from the site I posted earlier and I'm really happy with the results. One of the things I like is after I set it to something like 3000 rpm's if it needs more to cool it off it'll just ramp up the rpm's higher not stay static at 3000 rpm's, not to sure how much higher though. The second thing is I like that it's a prefspane rather than an app that takes up space in my dock, I know it's pretty easy to hide its icon in the dock but I'd rather not do that.

Again this is not smcFancontrol it's just called Fan Control.


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Oct 16, 2006, 05:23 AM
 
I don't understand any of this. sFC does exactly the same. It sets a minimum. If your Mac gets too warm the fans ramp up regardless of your minimum setting.
     
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Oct 16, 2006, 05:53 AM
 
@simon sorry I haven't tried smcFancontrol yet so I didn't know that smcFancontrol can do the same in regards to rampng up the fan speed. Whats cool is that from most of the comments on the net and my own hands on my keyboard, both products are doing what there suppose to be doing and that's cooling off our hot intelmacs wether it be an intelmacmini, MB, or the MBP.

Good stuff I tell ya, really happy with the results.


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Oct 16, 2006, 06:37 AM
 
thx so much for the sharing, very usefull
     
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Oct 16, 2006, 10:57 AM
 
Originally Posted by Simon
I really don't understand what you're saying.

• What is the pref pane solution?

• Why do you say 'so you don't need to set them to 3000 RPM constantly'? You don't need to set anything constantly. sFC can make your values stick - even across reboots if you want. There's no need to set anything repeatedly.
Sorry guys, I mean I am using this solution:

Lobotomo Software: MoofMenu

as opposed to the other one. This is a Preference Pane that dynamically adjusts the fan speed based on temperature so you don't have to constantly run the fans at 3000 RPM. Under normal conditions, my fans run at about 2100 RPM and the temp is usually 48-50 C.
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Oct 16, 2006, 10:58 AM
 
Originally Posted by brokenjago
I think he means that you don't need to set them to a constant 3000RPM.
Thank you, that is exactly what I meant. No need to run the fans at 3000 RPM if they only need to run at 2000 to keep things cool.
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Oct 16, 2006, 12:22 PM
 
Originally Posted by Mrjinglesusa
Thank you, that is exactly what I meant. No need to run the fans at 3000 RPM if they only need to run at 2000 to keep things cool.
Well, if 2000 rpm is enough, then you set it to a minimum 2000 rpm and you're done with it. If your Mac needs more cooling, it will ramp them up (and back down) all by itself. I really don't understand the point you're trying to make, sorry.
     
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Oct 16, 2006, 12:38 PM
 
I tried to use the software from Lobotomo on my Macbook. I had some weird problems with Safari. Certain web pages would fail and redirect me to us.falkag.net. Only thing I could do to fix it was uninstall Fan Control. Everyone should be advised, in case they have similar problems. I hope it is just some wacky bug, since I don't know how fan control should affect safari, but it could be deliberate. I'll give them the benefit of the doubt and try to email them.

Edit:

I had some similar problems on Friday after I installed CoreDuoTemp, see my post on ArsTechnica. I thought that clearing my cache had fixed it, but apparently there was more to the problem, since Deleting CoreDuoTemp then later installing lobotomo's software brought the problem back.

What's wrong with Apple's Home Page - Topic Powered by eve community
( Last edited by purc2523; Oct 16, 2006 at 12:47 PM. )
     
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Oct 16, 2006, 04:10 PM
 
smcFanControl(the app) only affects the minimum speed the fan always runs at, while Fan Control (the pref pane) affects min speed and the hi and lo cutoff, effectively giving you some control over the whole temp envelope. eg with smc, if your fan would normally be running 3500rpm at 78C and you use smc to move the min speed to 2500 rpm, it will still only spin up to 3500 at 78C. With the pref pane, you can tell it you never want the temp to hit 78 and it will spin up to a max of 6000rpm to ensure that. I left mine running with a maximum min speed and the minimums for hi and lo cutoff. My MBP is running BOINC and needs all the airflow thru the case as it can get. I ran smcFanControl at 6krpm, but when I loaded the pref pane, it killed smcFanControl. Both are works in progress still, but I'm leaning towards the pref pane.

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Oct 16, 2006, 04:11 PM
 
Haven't had any problems with safari rediecting or any problems with my system so far. Been in and out of safari all morning since I installed Lobotomo's prefs pane.


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Oct 16, 2006, 05:23 PM
 
After using sFC for the day now, and assuming it works as flawless as it appears, I have to say that it is a shame that Apple didn't release a smarter, system integrated GUI for this. Thanks to the developer for that.
     
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Oct 17, 2006, 04:52 AM
 
Well, in all fairness, the reason these two tools have popped up recently is because Apple included the necessary framework in the 10.4.8 update. So while they didn't do a GUI, they supplied developers with everything they need to make these tools.

You probably remember that this place was full of posts like "why doesn't Apple just allow us to adjust the fans and get cooler MBPs at the expense of some more noise?" I think this is a fine example that shows Apple does indeed listen.
     
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Oct 19, 2006, 02:50 AM
 
That may be so, but I am still on 10.4.6; wasn't so sure about updating to 10.4.8 after some user's had problems with Adobe illustrator crashing (on MBP) from time to time. Not sure of the current status of this though.

So for those still on 10.4.6 Fan Control works just fine.
I set my base speed to 3500rpm; and lower threshold temp to 40 deg C; leaving the upper threshold at 80 deg C.
The fans average at 3890rpm and temp at 45 deg C (114 deg F). Can't hear the fans at all (in a normal office).

What does everyone else get?
Before installig Fan Control I had been using my 'laptop' (mbp 17 2.16) every day and my fingers felt 'burned' at the end of everyday. Now things are cooler, I am finally 100% happy with my mac.
Like everyone else I wonder why apple didn't include this functionality within sys prefs as a pref pane. I'll bet they already have the util (som of the developers must have dislliked the heat), just never released it.
     
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Oct 20, 2006, 09:17 AM
 


I've adjusted the fan speed to 2600 rpm, and my processor temp dropped down approx. 15 degree C, now idling at about 35-40 degree C - that's pretty amazing.

I repeat my statement that Apple should have included an OS integrated solution for this, since it's such a prominent issue of their laptops and it's always unattractive to customers to have to download a special utility that does the trick.
     
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Oct 21, 2006, 08:49 PM
 
Are there any fan control apps that'll work on a Powerbook G4?
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Oct 21, 2006, 09:00 PM
 
Or iMac G5?
     
   
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