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Any cure for noisy 27" iMac i7 CPU fan?

9373 Views 11 Replies Latest reply: Jun 16, 2013 6:36 AM by ad b RSS
AndyTNZ Calculating status...
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Oct 4, 2011 2:29 AM

My recently bought iMac i7 has what I think is a noisy CPU fan. I had thought it was the HDD (see my other posting) but have since found this YouTube clip of someone else's iMac with exactly the same irritating noise:


I've tried resetting the SMC and PRAM but it hasn't solved the problem.


Has any one else experienced this CPU fan noise on a mid 2011 iMac and found a cure for it other than returning it to Apple?

iMac 27" : iPad : iPhone 4 : iPods
  • Mario_MM Level 3 Level 3 (745 points)
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    Oct 4, 2011 2:39 AM (in response to AndyTNZ)

    To get some more information you could install a tool like iStat Pro. It is free and will show you various temperatures and the fan speed.



  • durignieux pierre Level 6 Level 6 (10,625 points)
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    Oct 4, 2011 2:41 AM (in response to AndyTNZ)



    Sorry to say but for an imac under waranty best thing to do is call apple to have your imac noise problem fixed


    noise come probably from fan itself or from somthing hurt fan probably a cable not well attached




  • Melc_cyk Calculating status...
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    Oct 4, 2011 6:58 AM (in response to AndyTNZ)



    My Imac is from the same generation as yours. 2 days ago, I encountered my fans powering at full speed, making loud noises. I was panicked and called up the Apple support hotline. After doing a reset of the Imac as instructed, the fans' speed is back to normal. So far, nothing unusual happen.


    Here is the link to do the hard rest, Hope this can help you.

  • bigether Calculating status...
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    Oct 12, 2011 10:50 PM (in response to AndyTNZ)

    I have the same noise as in the video.  SMC and PRAM don't touch it.  I think this is a physical issue with the fan, not a firmware problem.  Speeds aren't an issue for me.  The CPU fan is actually running very slow, which I think is why I can hear this.  When it speeds up, it becomes somewhat more like what I'd expect.


    At this point, I'm going to take it *back* to my Service Center and point them to the video since they can't hear my actual fan in their shop due to the noise levels there.


    I know it's the cpu fan instead of the hdd because I've altered the speed of the fan using iStat (I put it right back to where it had been).


    This is pretty lame.  2500.00 for a top of the line machine.  They can spend the extra 3.00 on a better fan.  I'm *very* disappointed.

  • 9 DOT 9. Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    May 6, 2012 6:17 PM (in response to AndyTNZ)

    Hey, I have the same problem here, i've had a few imacs and they were all pretty silent and would expect the same from a 2011 state of the art $1,800.00 computer ... that's why i bought it. Had to have the HD replaced because of a grinding noise and now the fan is making a whirring noise... i sit at this thing sometimes 10 hrs a day... drives me mad ... took it to apple they say it is normal... $1800.00 for state of the art rubbish.

  • Reichadler Calculating status...
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    Mar 25, 2013 10:07 AM (in response to AndyTNZ)

    Same problem, & bought around the same time with the same model.


    We went Mac all the way after leaving Christchurch, & really regret the purchases, we got 2.


    My iMac does the full noise fan, with adled CPU so you can't do anything intense on it.


    I used to be able to cure it with the SMC reset.  But this got annoying sometimes having to do it every 20 mins.


    I took it back to the shop three times before I finally just started screaming at them.  They took it for a few weeks & replaced the motherboard.  That cured it for a month, & then it started again, slow at first, but now it is back to pretty much as soon as I turn it on, right before Easter when I wanted to get some serious gaming in.



    They blamed everything, the fact I had Windows 7 on it via boot camp, the fact I had non-apple ram I bought from OWC, the fact my apartment was not air-conditioned, then when I told them it was, they then said that air-conditioning had be know to cause issues... that was when I started screaming.


    pretty over it at this point, we bought Adobe for Mac, Office 2011, cost us over $17,000 for the 2 iMacs & software.  I am now looking to get the thing fixed & sell them & go back to PCs with a Mac mini to just plug into the TV for iTunes & our pics.


    I Love my iPads, iPhones & iPod; but my iMac needs to be drop kicked!  My wife's one had the DVD rom not reading.  It was pretty humiliating taking both iMacs back to the shop within a week, & then being told we would have to leave em there for two weeks as we had not bought them from there & it was our fault for using Apple Store online.



  • MichelPM Level 5 Level 5 (7,105 points)
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    Mar 25, 2013 10:15 AM (in response to Reichadler)

    Since, you have had several repairs done on these iMac's under AppleCare, you can request that Apple give you brand-spankin' new iMacs with your specs. If you have to, go right to the top manager at the Apple store.

    If each machine has had, at least, three major repairs, then you are entitled to a brand new iMac with identical specs.

    Demand that they honor this part of the AppleCare agreement.

  • Reichadler Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Mar 25, 2013 10:20 AM (in response to AndyTNZ)

    Thanks for that, could sell it as new then :P

  • ad b Calculating status...
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    Jun 16, 2013 6:36 AM (in response to AndyTNZ)


    Exactly the same problem here. I have an iMac 27 mid 2011. Fan sounds like a hair dryer in my face. I'm a music producer and I can't live like this. If I record near the machine I'm recording fan. SMC and PRAM resets appeared to work at first but now do nothing. I took it to local Apple store, queued up with armies of teenagers holding pink ipods where eventually they tested the hardware and said nothing's out of the ordinary.

    So I took it home and managed to speak to a senior Apple tech on the phone. He suggested putting iTunes into safe mode by pressing Alt and Command whilst opening it. This seemed to work for a few days but now the fans on full again yet as I type, the temperature monitor says 42 degrees.  THIS IS RUBBISH APPLE!! How about a permanent fix for this? You built the machines, we spent thousands on them. Now tell us what's going on. My iMacs set up directly in front of my window and I'm sorely close to seeing whether it can fly. Some proper help and explanation would be very useful.


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