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 Post subject: Looking for Aluminum Macbook or MBP Power Consumption
PostPosted: Sun Oct 19, 2008 12:57 pm 
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Location: Canada
I've posted a request for Aluminum MB or MBP owners to do some power consumption tests and post the results over on macrumors:

Just thought I would post it here too as this is the spot for users with power meters and a preference for quiet machines:

I'll post the link in my next post:

"Thank you to all the new Aluminum MB and MBP owners for posting their impressions:

I am looking for some very specific information and testing...

I'm considering getting my first MAC and I like the new laptops but want to get some solid numbers regarding heat, power, and noise before making the move. I really don't like noisy computers so I undervolt my current pc and laptops to reduce power consumption and enjoy the resulting slower fan speeds.

With a Kill-a-watt or power meter please post power consumption with the battery removed and screen on max brightness:
Idle / CPU (both cores) loaded / GPU Loaded / CPU and GPU Loaded

As well please post core temps along with fan speeds for all these states. I'm also looking for impressions of fan noise and heat on the bodies of the laptops.

In Windows I use cpuburn, atitool and speedfan to gather the info. I don't know the equivalent programs for MAC.

Hopefully coolbook will add support for the new nvidia chipsets as my experience with undervolting Core2Duo laptops is a savings of about 10watts on the loaded end which is a lot less heat for the fan to move.

If anyone has the old macbooks or pro and could post numbers it would be interesting to compare.

Thanks. "


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 Post subject: URL for thread on MacRumors
PostPosted: Sun Oct 19, 2008 12:58 pm 
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Here is the url for the thread over on Mac Rumors:

http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=584750


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Oct 27, 2008 1:27 am 
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Joined: Wed Mar 26, 2008 6:32 am
Posts: 100
Location: Switzerland
I bought one of the new unibody Macbooks last week, will hook it up to a wattmeter today and see what it'll show.

Noise: at low load the machine is virtually silent, the fan does however turn up quite a bit if you put it under full load (ran World of Warcraft for a bit), however even then the fan has a "pleasant" noise characteristic, so at least no annyoing whine ;-)

Heat: Quite frankly I'm surprised how little heat this thing is putting out...I haven't done any extensive testing under load, but under normal usage (web,dvd,office) the machine gets hardly warm at all...this thing stays cooler on the outside than my old powerbook g4 15" (1.33ghz)

Reported cpu temps seem quite high (around 50-55c idle and up to 75 on load, but I guess that the cooling has been tuned for these values as even on load this machine hardly seems to get warm on the outside, so I guess it's really just producing very little heat overall.

Overall impressions: I love this machine to bits...I'm still adjusting to the glossy screen (and I'd have preffered a non-glossy one), but apart from that this is just one incredibly well made machine. Fantastic Keyboard (no "give" at all), the trackpad is worlds beyond any other I've ever laid hands on, it's lightning fast, enough 3d power to run WoW at high settings and ofc the overall brilliant built quality and clever design of it all.

I'm not the biggest apple fan (not exactly a fan of most apple products and the only ones I've ever owned were the powerbook mentioned earlier and now this macbook), but they really do know how to make notebooks :-)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Oct 27, 2008 9:08 am 
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Location: Monterey Bay, CA
Hey Kel,

Which configuration do you have (cpu speed, gpu card?) and what kind of framerates are you seeing in WoW (say in Shatt and instances)?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Oct 27, 2008 11:40 am 
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Location: Switzerland
I've got 2.0ghz Macbook with the integrated 9400 gpu - I haven't done much playing yet, but so far framerate seems to be in the 30-50fps ballpark in shatt with textures on max and fancy shadows switched on, viewing distance set to medium. I'll screenshot the settings later so that you have a better idea.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Oct 27, 2008 11:47 am 
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Sounds sweet. Be sure to stay away from the dang ghouls.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Oct 27, 2008 12:32 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 26, 2008 6:32 am
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Did some testing:
seems I overestimated framerates, with my settings framerates in shatt are around 20-30fps, enabling 2x AA is possible and costs about 3-4fps, 4x another 3-4fps - so with 4x you're down to around 18fps average which is a bit on the low side.
Minimum settings seems to give a consistent 50fps.
Setting viewdistance to further away leeds to stuttering, seems like it'll need to load textures quicker than it can manage then and framerate goes down the drain - once textures are loaded framerate goes up to almost low view distance levels, but it's still pretty much unplayable as each time it needs to load another new texture framereate goes down the drain again.

These screenshots were taken with the settings below, no AA:
Image

Image

Image

Powerconsumption:
Charging Battery, Playing WoW, Wlan & Bluetooth on: 66W
Charging Battery, Wlan + Bluetooth on: 45W
Charging Battery, Sleep, Bluetooth off: 52W (?? does it go into speedcharging while sleeping?)

Edit: odd...now it's at 30W while charging while sleeping...maybe there's just a spike right when it goes to sleep...

Looking at the deltas here I'd estimate that it uses around 15w in idle and 36w while playing wow, will update figures once it's fully charged and see how it'll look then.

Temps (After about 10min of WoW):
Cpu, heatsink A & B = 71c
Northbridge = 58c
Enclosure Bottom = 33c
HD = 35c

More wattage numbers to follow, didn't feel like powering it down just yet, I'm only at 6 1/2 days uptime ;-)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Oct 27, 2008 1:04 pm 
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Location: Monterey Bay, CA
thanks!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Oct 27, 2008 4:05 pm 
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Location: Switzerland
Battery fully charged, sleep ~ 0.9W (actually my Wattmeter shows 0 Watt, amps cycle between 0.01 and 0.00 @ 235 V, guess it's just not accurate enough for this ;-) )

This would predict a power draw in sleep mode of around 80mAH - i'll see how much power is left in the morning (...or how flawed my math was at this late hour :-P )

Battery fully charged, idle = 15 Watts
Battery fully charged, WoW = 35 Watts

Update:
7 Hours of sleep drained 150 mAH from the battery (measured with Coconut Battery) - so it seems to use roughly 21 mAH while sleeping on battery.
The battery has a 4100 maH capacity so this means a fully charged laptop could stay in sleep mode* for around 8 full days before running out of power.

*sleep mode referd here is "suspend to ram", in case you're wondering - the macbook wakes up from this mode in around 2s - i.e. in the time it takes you to open the lid the notebook and is already fully usable.


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 Post subject: Thanks Kel
PostPosted: Tue Oct 28, 2008 11:25 am 
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Thanks for the posts...so far this is the only info regarding actual power consumption of the new Macbooks I've seen on the web. Seems like Silent PC is place to find people who care about power consumption and understand how it directly relates to the amount of heat the cooling system is having to clear.

I've also picked up the base glassbook, I would add more measurements but I'm traveling without my power meter. So far I would say the system is very quiet when idling.

Kel could you add some measurements:

-Power consumption of the new LED panel:
-If you measure the idle power of the system with the Panel off, at lowest and highest brightness we can get a power number on the screen. This would be nice to compare with an old Macbook to see how much difference the LED's really make.

Some new reviews have popped up on the web:

http://www.notebookreview.com/default.asp?newsID=4662 - The reviewer actually thought that the macbook was passively cooled and fanless. If this had been true we might have finally had the silentpc dream laptop. The temps measured look pretty good.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Oct 28, 2008 12:51 pm 
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Location: Switzerland
Actually I just found out that you don't even need a powermeter to measure powerdraw - if you go into the system profiler you can see the current powerdraw if you have a look at the power section :-)

Running on battery (averages of several measurements, voltage is 11.7V):
Full brightness: 1100 mA
Minimum brightness: 850 mA
Backlight off: 750 mA

So the display seems to draw around 350mA or 4W at full brightness and 100mA or 1.17w at minimum brightness.

I'm not exactly sure how well these can be trusted (there might always be things outside my influence affecting power draw) but it should give a rough idea of the powerdraw of the display nonetheless.


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 Post subject: More Measurements
PostPosted: Mon Nov 03, 2008 5:22 pm 
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Location: Canada
Power Consumption Tests:

Aluminum Macbook 2.0Ghz 2GB Ram 160GB HDD

Screen Power- the screen is about 4watts from the lowest brightness to the maximum brightness. The lowest brightness power consumption is very close to being completely off as I see no drop in the power measurement when I turn the screen off.

Power consumption measurements are with the screen at maximum brightness, battery removed, and bluetooth off. Temp and Fan Measurements are from iStat Pro.

1 or 2 instances of CPU Test for loading the CPU
OpenGL Viewer tests are used to load the GPU

State_______________Power_________CPU Temp______________Fan RPM

Idle________________15 Watts_______38_____________________2000
1 Instance CPU Test___26 Watts_______70_____________________2000
2 Instances CPU Test__33 Watts_______79_____________________3300
2 CPU Test + OpenGL__41 Watts_______80_____________________3900

I am very impressed with this laptop from a heat and noise point of view. The fan is really not noticeable till it gets above 2500rpm, even then the fan noise is not unpleasant. Most of the time you will never hear the fan (I only notice the fan noise at 2000rpm in a really quiet room) as the system does not seem to start raising the fan speed till the cpu hits about 75 degrees. I'm impressed with Apples fan control algorithm, they prefer to run a higher cpu temp and hold off on the fan till it is really necessary.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Nov 05, 2008 3:01 am 
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Joined: Wed Mar 26, 2008 6:32 am
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Location: Switzerland
Good to see we're both coming up with very similar numbers :-)

There's one very odd thing I've encountered so far...when I had my macbook plugged in at the office it seemed to "vibrate" - that even continued when I put it to sleep (so it wasn't the HD or the fan). It was an odd very low intensity but very high frequenzy "buzz". Disconnecting it from the powerbrick made it go away and afterwards I wasn't able to reproduce it.

I remember noticing the same "oddity" with an external aluminimum HD enclosure a year or two ago, it never caused any problems but it's a very odd effect....it's not so much vibration and more of a buzz and the buzz is only really noticable if you touch the decive very lightly (i.e. like resting your fingers on the keyboard - resting your palm on the device makes the buzz not go away, but much harder to notice).

Anyone got an idea what might cause this or why it even happens?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Nov 06, 2008 12:37 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 02, 2003 4:14 am
Posts: 143
Location: Finland
I just got a unibody macbook today at work and a WD Scorpio Black HD with it. I feel the whole enclosure resonating, and hear quite an annoying buzz whenever the machine is on anything that reflects sound. Laying my hand on it does muffle it up a bit.

I just ran it without the disk inside and the machine was silky smooth (and the drive very noisy).

Now I need to figure out if the drive is faulty, or I'm just too sensitive. :?

edit: compared with a friends identical configuration today, and the difference is like night and day. Took the disk out and RMA'd it.

edit: The new disk was great, no more resonance


Last edited by kamina on Tue Aug 11, 2009 11:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Macbook reduces performance when no battery installed
PostPosted: Sat Nov 22, 2008 1:57 pm 
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Joined: Sun Oct 19, 2008 12:49 pm
Posts: 9
Location: Canada
So my previous power testing was all done with the battery removed to make sure that the power readings where not affected by the battery charging or the battery supplying power to the system.

I should now run the tests again with a battery since the Macbook and Macbook Pro drop their performance when there is no battery installed. This could make it very difficult to get an accurate number on peak power consumption.

http://support.apple.com/kb/HT2332

http://www.gearlog.com/2008/11/apple_no ... e_perf.php

I hope someone releases a tweak to disable this setting, since I would prefer to have the option to run my laptop without a battery.


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