Previous 1 2 3 Next 65 Replies Latest reply: Apr 22, 2010 1:30 AM by Ronda Wilson
pritchet1 Level 1 Level 1
Has anybody compiled any milliGauss emissions (chart) anywhere for either the desktop or portable Macs down through the years?

I'm coming up empty, except for some stuff Charles Moore published in 2008 with specifics to iPhones.

MacBook Pro, Mac OS X (10.5.8)
Reply by Rod Hagen on Feb 16, 2010 7:03 PM Helpful
I don't know if you have read Apple's Euro statement of compliance, pritchet, but you can find the one for the 13" MBP at and others at You will find that a number of the standards mentioned there , with which Apple maintain compliance, deal with EM emissions, though not not necessarily with specific respect to health issues. I'll leave it to you to work through the standards to find the maximum allowable numbers etc , but I see that at least one of these standards won't even come into effect until 2011, though Apple certify that they meet it now.Rod
Reply by Rod Hagen on Feb 20, 2010 4:09 PM Helpful
Hi again, Travis. A good source of material that I have just found is the EMF-Portal operated by the University Hospital of Aachen University. Seems to carry stuff without fear or favour. Generally provides abstracts but I'd guess you probably have full PubMed access etc for the original articles. Has a specific section of links on EM / cellular function related articles (with about 400 listed).CheersRod

All replies

  • ericlw Level 1 Level 1
    ive never seen any reports.

    your not one of those people who think they are being effected by electromagnetic fields are you?
  • pritchet1 Level 1 Level 1
    I do not believe that I personally suffer from electromagnetic sensitivity. I am not epileptic or suffer from lupus.

    I want to know if anyone has actually posted any studies related to radiation emissions from Macs.
  • varjak paw Level 10 Level 10
    None I've seen that were done at all recently. I think this sort of study was pretty much discontinued when VDT monitors were largely replaced with LCDs, since any possible magnetic radiation from an LCD-equipped computer would almost certainly be swamped by the Earth's own magnetic field which is typically about 500 mG. Unless and until lab studies show any sort of conclusive link between weak magnetic fields and health, I doubt that there will be much motivation to measure magnetic fields, if any, being emitted by current LCD-based computer systems.

  • pritchet1 Level 1 Level 1
    Even though Apple Corporation has recieved both the EnergyStar 5.0 and EPEAT Gold compliance stamps (and no other comoputer company can say that yet), which I applaud, electromagnetic radio emissions are not considered in the evaluations.

    'twould be nice if we saw some real data regarding the topic. The Russians established a standard of 1/1000th milliGauss (mG), while the US EPA has established 1.5mG and the European community has camped on 2mG.
  • eww Level 9 Level 9
    As Dave has said above, no reasonable person is likely to be very concerned about studying the health effects of the difference between .001 mG and 2 mG when the earth's own magnetic field strength at its surface ranges between about 300 and 600 mG. You aren't very likely to find much of an audience for your implied view that that difference between tiny traces of magnetism really needs study, when everyone and everything is already bathed in hundreds or thousands of times more magnetism than that 100% of the time.
  • pritchet1 Level 1 Level 1
    Please don't confuse earth's magnetism with the variable effects of non-ionized electromagnetism.

    Over time, Apple Engineering has done a magnificent job correcting EMF/EMI issues with motherboards, but only after those boards suffered ignominious deaths. ;^)
  • varjak paw Level 10 Level 10
    The fact remains that there appear to have been no comprehensive studies done on the magnetic emissions of any current or recent computer, Apple or any other brand. If you feel that this is something Apple should address, you can comment to Apple here:

    Further discussion on the subject will just, I fear, lead to fruitless argument, so I think that unless someone can point to a study that would address your question, either by providing data as to such emissions, or data that contradicts the (rather arbitrary) limits on such emissions that have been proposed and so eliminate your cause for concern, we should discontinue the thread at this point.

  • Rod Hagen Level 7 Level 7
    It is an interesting question, I reckon, and I'm surprised that there aren't more real "numbers" out there. Instead, for notebook computers generally, there seems to be simply rhetoric from one side or the other when I google around about it.

    Notebook computers are used differently from many other devices, often in close proximity to certain sensitive and problem prone parts of the body (hence the popular name "laptops", despite the attempts of manufacturers to stress that they are not!)

    Certainly EMI issues can be a significant technical issue in notebook design - especially fast, small, modern ones - see g-solutions.html for example.

    +Electromagnetic interference (EMI) is a significant problem in high performance notebook computers. The high clock rate of the CPU of a high performance notebook computer is associated with high-frequency signal components. These high-frequency signal components may generate electromagnetic waves which propagate to other portions of the notebook computer or to neighboring electronic circuits and produce deleterious electromagnetic interference (EMI).+

    Yep, I'd like to see some figures on this too, not because I have strong feelings one way or another about the "health issue" , but because it always helps to have the facts straight about such things. I noticed in one piece I came across from the US EPA while looking at this that even they found information about laptop emissions hard to obtain. (I'm afraid I've lost the link for the moment).


  • pritchet1 Level 1 Level 1

    I made the request to Apple.
  • carl wolf Level 6 Level 6
    "Even though Apple Corporation has recieved both the EnergyStar 5.0 and EPEAT Gold compliance stamps...electromagnetic radio emissions are not considered in the evaluations."

    That is true. Apple's products complies with all international EMC emissions standards. In the US, the standards are generally referred to as "FCC Class A" and "FCC Class B". The internet has volumes of information regarding this, and I suggest that you utilize Google.
  • pritchet1 Level 1 Level 1
    I think I probably have exhausted the search engines on this topic. My findings will be published in the March issue of macCompanion magazine, which will be dedicated to the topic.

    I'm still looking for any existing real data on EMF/EMI and Macintosh computers, so I do not have to create it myself. Apparently, I need to. I have it already for iPhones.

    I understand the ambient EMF/EMI in our electrified world. I need the data regarding mG emissions from Macs to establish if preventives really need to be applied or even needed. Are ferrite beads on cables and cords enough? Until I have real data, all preventive efforts may be just a waste of time, money and bandwidth.

    Think of the MagSafe power adapter itself (and its failure rate). Is the internal circuitry for sensing ground effective with the 2-prong power outlet? Is there a 3-prong unit available for the MBP for earthing in the US or is there only one available in Great Britain?
  • eww Level 9 Level 9
    Is there a 3-prong unit available for the MBP for earthing in the US or is there only one available in Great Britain?

    This I can answer: yes, there is. The MBP adapter is supplied with a 6-foot, 3-prong cord that can be used in place of the 2-prong "duck head".
  • pritchet1 Level 1 Level 1

    I have yet to hear from Apple on this Topic. I'm getting more traffic and feedback from Ars Technica. Step up to the plate.

    I did the poorboy test today using an AM radio and whitenoise. I noticed that the AirPort Express screamed, so I know it is electrically noisy. The iMac was tame by comparison. I used a HARApad under the MBP 17" and discovered it made next to no difference if it was under, over or around the MBP. The noisiest parts were the touchpad, keyboard and I was blown away at how noisy the screen was. Wow! The aluminum frame didn't make a whole lot of difference and the MagSafe adapter is also extremely noisy. I'll test these devices again, once I get a get a TriField Gaussmeter in my hands.

    Frankly I was shocked (pun intended) by my tests. The radio didn't quiet down to background noise until I was at least 4 feet away from the keyboard. Now it is your turn. Houston, we have a problem! You do some testing now and see if your MBP is as noisy electronically as mine.
  • eww Level 9 Level 9
    ...Step up to the plate...Now it is your turn. Houston, we have a problem! You do some testing now and see if your MBP is as noisy electronically as mine.

    You do understand that you aren't talking to Apple here, don't you? These are user-to-user forums.

    If you feel you've discovered a crisis to which Apple must quickly respond, please contact Apple directly rather than demand action from other Mac users. That's who is reading your posts here. We're in no position to do anything about your issue. And in over a year of daily reading and posting in these MBP forums, I haven't seen a single other poster who shares your particular concern/anxiety, so I'm sure it will be an interesting new topic for Apple's readers of MBP Feedback.
Previous 1 2 3 Next