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Macbook Air Overheating SOLVED!!!!

25432 Views 13 Replies Latest reply: Apr 27, 2008 5:24 AM by j1s RSS
mviniegra Calculating status...
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Apr 10, 2008 2:51 PM
I have been struggling for a week now with a problem and finally found a solution. I want to share it here.

My macbook air, with any heavy processor usage (video converting, flash video, etc) very easily went into limp mode. Meaning intermittent freezing and locking.

Upon further investigation, I found out one of my processor cores was shutting down, and the other was hitting 100% (according to Activity Monitor).

(Well someone else did) but I am posting it here because it is simple and effective.

Buy a shareware application called coolbook and install it. This software throttles the processor according to load and temperature. I have not noticed any performance penalty, but my macbook air has NOT FROZEN ONCE. It also runs a lot cooler and also uses both cores at all times.

Google: /macbook air coolbook/ for more information about settings and possible issues.

It seems this processor freezing is a common problem. APPLE SHOULD FIX IT. I ALMOST GOT RID OF MY AIR BECAUSE OF THIS.

Hope this post helps someone.

Macbook, Mac OS X (10.5.2)
  • Wicky69 Calculating status...
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    Apr 11, 2008 6:25 AM (in response to mviniegra)
    I hope it'll work, because since I updated the EFI and the keyboard my MBA goes so slowly, and also crash so often.

    It's hard to work like this, also writting here, is quite difficult, and also I've some problems with the accents, they appear duplicated ( I've never seen this before..)

    I'll try...thanks !
    MacBook Air, Mac OS X (10.5.2), 1,8 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo, 2GB ram...
  • Kirk McElhearn Level 2 Level 2 (155 points)
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    Apr 11, 2008 7:06 AM (in response to mviniegra)
    Did you do the recent firmware update? It has made my MBA run much cooler (see my forum post earlier today). I suspect Apple did something about voltage similar to what Coolbook does.

  • Ivan G Calculating status...
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    Apr 11, 2008 9:50 AM (in response to mviniegra)
    So ever since they announced the arrival for MacBookAir I was super excited about this product. Once it came out all of a sudden I heard negative stories left and right. a couple had to do with the overheating, freezing, the light on the keyboard wasn't that great and so on and so forth. I still haven't purchased it, I'm scared of facing my dream computer, and its not operating properly. How do you feel about the MBA, now that you have purchased? I'm about to go in a couple of days to buy one, but still very hesitant. What do you think?
    Windows XP
  • joeuu Level 5 Level 5 (5,075 points)
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    Apr 11, 2008 10:14 AM (in response to Ivan G)
    If you wait until the majority of posts on these (help-those-in-trouble) boards are positive, you'll never get one.

    The same with Dell, IBM, Lenova, ...fill in the name

    I've had angst with PowerBooks, iMacs, iPods, and MacBooks from reading here, but have had minimal issues.

    15 pb 1.25ghz 2gb RAM 80gb; 20 iMac 2.0ghz 1.5gb; BlackBook 2gB; Touch, Mac OS X (10.5.2), Newton in the closet. SE 30 in the Garage.
  • Darrell Diaz Level 1 Level 1 (55 points)
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    Apr 11, 2008 5:21 PM (in response to mviniegra)
    Just wanted to add my 2 cents. I have a week 8 Air that I've been mostly thrilled with having sold my core duo 2.0GHz MacBook. The main bugger for me has been overheating/ core shutdown issues under heavy video load. After working with Apple for 2 weeks. They isolated several Digidesign components (from Pro Tools 7.4) and Parallels Desktop components that were exacerbating the problem. The issue has been mostly solved EXCEPT for when playing World of Warcraft. BUT, updating to the latest Air firmware, using my podium coolpad, running SMC Fan control on max, minimizing my video settings AND using CoolBook have made me a happy camper. I can now run all of my apps and play my game as well without core shutdowns. I'm averaging 17-18fps in WoW now. My MacBook Air runs substantially cooler and quieter now with better battery life. So far my machine is stable @ all 4 frequencies (800/1200/1400/1600) @ .9 volts. Battery life has increased about an hour. Hope this info helps someone else and kudos to the tech dept @ Apple especially Brandon.
    New iMac Core 2 Duo 2GHz/ MacBook Air 1.6GHz, Mac OS X (10.5.2), 4GB RAM/ 2GB RAM
  • wordy Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Apr 21, 2008 6:38 PM (in response to mviniegra)
    It does throttle the voltage, and those are the "default" settings in Coolbook (best purchase I've made for my Air BTW!). Basically, using a lower voltage produces less heat. My minimum stable voltages are similar to yours, except @ 1600 my air is still stable at 0.9V. Apple's voltage settings are OK, but as Coolbook demonstrates, they can be lower. Apple's settings are "safe" - because minimum stable voltages vary across processors even within the same family - Apple had to be "safe." Coolbook allows you to customize the voltage settings to your particular processor.

    Hope that helps.
    1.6 MacBook Air, Mac OS X (10.5.2)
  • Michael Pitogo Level 1 Level 1 (35 points)
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    Apr 22, 2008 9:36 AM (in response to mviniegra)
    Oh wow, cool. Thanks for finding that. I had the same issue, my air would freeze then come back after 20 minutes. I hope Apple can address this problem, I didn't know it was limp mode.
    Too many to list, Mac OS X (10.5.2)
  • theping Calculating status...
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    Apr 23, 2008 9:10 AM (in response to mviniegra)
    I was wondering if underthrottling is what the last apple update did? Since my MBA seems to be running with fewer freezes lately?
    Macbook Air, Mac OS X (10.5.2)
  • barkingmad Level 1 Level 1 (90 points)
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    Apr 23, 2008 9:16 PM (in response to mviniegra)

    I haven't bought my MBA yet but I am copying this into my notes!


    Message was edited by: barkingmad
    iMac 2007 17" 2GHz core 2 Duo 1GB memory,, Mac OS X (10.4.11), external HD,  shuffle nanoiPhone 8gb happier and happierSE
  • malifu Calculating status...
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    Apr 25, 2008 5:07 PM (in response to mviniegra)
    Manuel, I don´t speak english, please send me a email, y me explicas como configurar bien el coolbook. Gracias
    Macbook Air, Mac OS X (10.5.2)
  • RobN Calculating status...
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    Apr 26, 2008 1:24 PM (in response to mviniegra)
    I tried the CoolBook software & it works great. I have had issues with my Macbook Air freezing up & this small piece of software has solved this problem. I have been to the Apple Store 3X working with the Mac Genius to try to solve the issue. The MacBook Air still froze, even after the logic board was replaced. I hope that Apple will fix the problem soon for future users. For $10, this was an excellent investment.
    MacBook Air, Mac OS X (10.5.2)
  • j1s Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)
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    Apr 27, 2008 5:24 AM (in response to mviniegra)
    thanks i had the same problem
    macbook air, Mac OS X (10.5.2), mac mini


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