Are the New i7 MacBooks Hot Enough to Boil Water?

are the new i7 macbooks hot enough to boil water 500x macbookcorei723Apple has a lust for packaging loads of electronics into tight metal enclosures. That desire has made it perhaps the hottest gadget-maker on the market, but it also has brought it perennial overheating issues. From overheating iPods and iPhones to the overheating iPad, heat issues have become an unpleasant fact of life for many Apple product owners.

Last week testing by PC Authority indicated that the new 17″ MacBook Pro with an Intel Core i7-620M processor is overheating so badly it could boil water. During testing, the site ran the benchmark Cinebench. In OS X the laptop hit a balmy 90° C (39.9° C is approximately 102° F, for the non-SI units inclined), while in Windows 7 (using Boot Camp) the temperature spiked to 101° C, according to the laptop’s temperature diode.

Such issues under Boot Camp are not particularly new. On the Apple support forums, one customer “ADKIM”, owner of a mid-2009 Penryn MacBook Pro writes, “I’ve had Windows 7 Home Premium installed for a little over two weeks now and the temparature (sic) gets so hot that my MBP will actually auto-shutdown.

It gets as high as 195F/90C!”

The latest MacBook Pro does appear to be hitting even greater highs heatwise, though, particularly in OS X.

Already users have begun to complain on Apple’s forums. Writes one user:

I was playing WoW in Windows 7 in boot camp and the laptop felt hot to the touch to the point that if i were to leave my finger there it would start to burn. The hottest part of the laptop was the top left corner. Thinking it was overheating, I downloaded a GPU & CPU monitoring program. The CPU and GPU were both sitting around 70 deg celcius (sic) and i could hear the fan blowing at max speed. Is this normal operation temps for the new model of macbook pros?

The system I am using is the 15-inch Macbook Pro, the model that just came out. Thanks for the help!

It’s unclear what the source of the Apple MBP’s heat woes might be. The good news for MacBook Pro owners is that the Intel Core i7 can operate up to 105° C, as can most of the other hardware onboard, apparently.

As one commenter “eww” remarks in an Apple forum post, “100°C at the processor core is not overheating. It is within the safe operating temperature range for all current MBPs.”

Technically, he’s right about it being within the operating temperature. But the bad news for MacBook Pro buyers is that even if the case doesn’t get quite that hot, it may be hot enough to cause discomfort and even possibly injury (burns or blistering) to the user, if their skin comes in contact with the fully heated case. Also, such a high heat load raises the risk of hardware failure over the life of the device.

Apple has not yet commented officially on these developments.


Verizon’s deal could get you a free iPhone XR — but there’s some fine print

Verizon launched a new deal for its smartphones aimed at encouraging customers to open a new line. If you're willing and you want two new phones, you could get a free Samsung Galaxy S9, iPhone XR, or Pixel 3.

The Asus ZenBook 13 offers more value and performance than Apple's MacBook Air

The Asus ZenBook 13 UX333 is the latest in that company's excellent "budget" laptop line, and it looks and feels better than ever. How does it compare to Apple's latest MacBook Air?

Keep your laptop battery in tip-top condition with these handy tips

Learn how to care for your laptop's battery, how it works, and what you can do to make sure yours last for years and retains its charge. Check out our handy guide for valuable tips, no matter what type of laptop you have.

From Chromebooks to MacBooks, here are the best laptop deals for January 2019

Whether you need a new laptop for school or work or you're just doing some post-holiday shopping, we've got you covered: These are the best laptop deals going right now, from discounted MacBooks to on-the-go gaming PCs.

From Air to Pro, here are the best MacBook deals for January 2019

If you’re in the market for a new Apple laptop, let us make your work a little easier: We hunted down the best up-to-date MacBook deals available online right now from various retailers.

Android vs. iOS: Which smartphone platform is the best?

If you’re trying to choose a new phone and you’re not sure about the merits and pitfalls of the leading smartphone operating systems, then come on in for a detailed breakdown as we pit Android vs. iOS in various categories.

5G phones make a lot of promises. Here’s what to really expect

There has been a lot of marketing copy expounding the potential benefits of 5G networks, but a lot less on the practical implications of 5G smartphones. There's a reason for that.

Protect your expensive new laptop with the best Macbook cases

If you recently picked up a new MacBook, you’ll want something to protect its gorgeous exterior. Here, we've gathered the best MacBook cases and covers, whether you're looking for style or protection.

How to jailbreak your iPhone on iOS 12: A beginner’s guide

The latest jailbreaking tools for iOS 12 make freeing your iOS device easier than ever. This guide will teach you how to jailbreak your iPhone or iPad, and explain what jailbreaking will do for you.

Here’s how to take a screenshot on an iPad, step by step

The ability to capture screenshots may not be the iPad's most glamorous feature, but it's one of its most useful. Here's a step-by-step guide on how to take a screenshot on an iPad, whether it's an iPad Pro from 2018 or an older iPad model.
Social Media

Here’s how to save someone’s Instagram Story to your phone

Curious about how to save someone's Instagram Story to your phone? Lucky for you, it can be done -- but it does take a few extra steps. Here's what you need to know to save Instagram Stories on both iOS and Android.

Stop dragging windows on your Mac. Here's how to use Split View to multitask

The latest iterations of MacOS offer a native Split View feature that can automatically divide screen space between two applications. Here's how to use Split View on a Mac, adjust it as needed, and how it can help out.

Need a new tablet? The best iPad deals for January 2019

In the wide world of tablets, Apple is still the king. If you're on team Apple and just can't live without iOS, we've curated an up-to-date list of all of the best iPad deals currently available for December 2018.

Here’s how to download podcasts and listen to them on Android or iOS

Podcasts have become a cultural staple. Here's how to download podcasts and listen to them on your Android or iOS device, and which apps to use if you're looking to get the most out of the format.