Print 76 comment(s) - last by evo slevven.. on Sep 19 at 5:49 PM

We attended Intel's cooling presentation this morning.

Intel's engineer complains that Apple is more concerned about making its products pretty than fixing their overheating problems.
What can Intel do to stop companies like Apple from selling overheating designs? "Nothing", presenter says.

In the quick IDF 2011 notes category, we wanted to share a humorous exchange we had with an Intel Corp. (INTC) engineer.  Joshua Linden-Levy is a "Mechanical Pathfinding Engineer" at Intel and delivered a terrific presentation on cooling in Oak Trail, the Intel Atom platform that replaces Pine Trail.

In the presentation Mr. Linden-Levy discussed how the target temperature for laptops was 58 Celsius, according to industry standards.  Given the high temperatures long suffered by various editions of Apple, Inc.'s (AAPL) MacBook Pros, we wanted to ask him how Intel plans to keep its partners (like Apple) from violating the proposed thermal guidelines on Oak Trail and its other product lines (Apple is unlikely to use Oak Trail, but typically uses other Intel's mainstream notebook and desktop processor lines in its models).

During the Q&A session Mr. Linden-Levy acknowledged hearing about Apple's laptop thermal issues.  What can Intel do prevent partners from committing such thermal botch jobs?  "Nothing," says Mr. Linden-Levy, "[the manufacturer will] just get a bad reputation among consumers."

As we discussed the issue further he added, "Well as you know, with Apple their chief priority is always form and looks -- everything else, including cooling design is an afterthought."

We found the presenter's informed, earnest unscripted dialogue about one of his company's largest partners refreshing.

Currently the thermal problem-plagued MacBook Pro models sell for almost twice the price of comparable hardware models from ASUSTEK Computer Inc. (TPE:2357).  Of course ASUSTEK's laptops lack the special aluminum unibody -- but when that unibody can get as hot as 100 degrees Celsius, it's hardly a selling point.

To be fair, less pricey models from 
Sony Corp. (TYO:6758) and Dell, Inc. (DELLhave suffered from similar issues [1][2].  Unlike these companies, though, Apple often refuses to recall or fully patch its faulty products.

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RE: Of course not
By chiadog on 9/14/2011 8:30:11 PM , Rating: 2
I'll eat my hat when Apple admit design flaws instead of blaming customers, or claiming it's a feature. I am pretty sure they did not design the MBP to double as a(n expensive) portable hot plate.

RE: Of course not
By FITCamaro on 9/15/2011 7:15:55 AM , Rating: 5
You're holding it wrong!

RE: Of course not
By rburnham on 9/15/2011 9:29:16 AM , Rating: 2
I can understand using the metal case as a heatsink, but only up to a point. When the case is hitting triple digit temperatures, that's bad for male genitals.

RE: Of course not
By ICBM on 9/15/2011 11:38:21 AM , Rating: 2
Aluminum cases don't help as much as we originally would have thought. Look at Coolermaster and Lian Li, they originally advertised since it was aluminum it would be cooler. But testing showed otherwise.

RE: Of course not
By mindless1 on 9/15/2011 7:31:53 PM , Rating: 2
It helps (some) if you use the case as a heatsink, with a good transfer junction area, not if it's just the container with mostly air conduction.

RE: Of course not
By LordSojar on 9/17/2011 7:25:34 PM , Rating: 2
that's bad for male genitals

Mac owners have no genitals... they produce by binary fission. Why do you think there are so many derpy Mac owners who all dress and basically look the same as well as acting the same? Give you a hint: They aren't reproducing with intelligent humans.

RE: Of course not
By darkpuppet on 9/19/2011 4:05:44 PM , Rating: 2
When the case is hitting triple digit temperatures, that's bad for male genitals.

I'm pretty sure that triple digit temps are bad for female genitals too.

... or pretty much any genital that doesn't belong to a fire elemental.

RE: Of course not
By fteoath64 on 9/15/2011 9:33:32 AM , Rating: 5
Apple will say "it is NOT a design flaw", it is intentional that the product has built in obsolescence!. After AppleCare expires, the machine is unlikely to last a few months longer. Just look at the stats. They encourage users to upgrade every 2-3 years hence, ensuring repeat business!. It is Job's brilliance to have world full of suckers buying their stuff.

Or else the battery dies and one has to spend plenty $$$ just to get them replaced. Yet will not last another 12 months ...

Yeah, Build-in obsolescence is their model!.

RE: Of course not
By Omega215D on 9/15/2011 11:29:39 AM , Rating: 2
Unfortunately that doesn't sound too far from the truth...

My 2007 white MacBook had troubles 3 months into ownership and Apple refused to acknowledge that there was a problem with my DVD drive or even replace it. It died a month later. Then the laptop got really hot and then refused to boot in 2010, meanwhile my 2007 Thinkpad T60 is still alive and kicking. Apple even had the nerve to tell me I shouldn't have been so rough with the notebook (I complained of cracking) then when I explained that the MacBook was on my desk for 80% of the time and in a well padded hardcase during travel the "Genius" says that it's meant to be portable.

My brother's year old MacBook Pro is now suffering from constant spinning circles after a security update and Apple quoted the AppleCare sales pitch then told him to shove off (not in those words but the tone).

Still, I haven't found a laptop that has a trackpad that was as nice to use as the one on the MacBook.

RE: Of course not
By B3an on 9/15/11, Rating: 0
RE: Of course not
By Omega215D on 9/15/2011 8:57:28 PM , Rating: 2
nope. I'm sticking with thinkpads and my brother would continue using his mac. The trackpad is what I miss the most about MacBooks though but for reliability it's gonna be Thinkpads or Toughbooks.

RE: Of course not
By rameshms on 9/15/2011 1:13:46 PM , Rating: 2
Blame it on user and third party software..

That's probably because the user is watching too much flash videos on youtube. It's Adobe Flash that's causing the cpu overheat..

Nothing wrong with Macbook as long as you visit html5 websites..

RE: Of course not
By B3an on 9/15/2011 4:16:53 PM , Rating: 2

So it's Flash causing all these over heating CakBooks right? Even though on PC laptops it's bizarrely fine and does not overheat. Ever. How could this possibly be??

If a laptop overheats using ANY software it's a design flaw. Not debatable. All other WELL designed laptops do not overheat no matter what you run. And theres FAR more demanding stuff than Flash out there.

Also Flash's Stage Video which has been around since Flash 10.2 uses LESS CPU usage than HTML5 video. It's the best in class video performance. Also try running Apples own HTML5 demo's on a Macbook Air or iPad. 100% CPU usage on iPad and a frame rate lower than 10 FPS. Battery is drained in no time and heats the thing up. Yet a slower clocked Android phone can run the same stuff in Flash and hit 60 FPS. HTML5 is worser than Flash at many things. But being an Apple user i dont expect you to actually be educated with anything regarding technology.

"Google fired a shot heard 'round the world, and now a second American company has answered the call to defend the rights of the Chinese people." -- Rep. Christopher H. Smith (R-N.J.)

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