Core i7 Macbook Pro – Keep it off your lap if you want to protect your, erm… “jewels”

In benchmark tests, the Core i7 CPU in Apple’s latest 17-inch Macbook Pro showed that it’s capable of hitting a whopping 100°C!

Tech site PC Authority discovered this alarming rise in temperature when benchmarking the new notebook:

The tests were run on Cinebench in OS X, and, as with the Windows version, the CPU temperature climbed way too high – topping out at 90 degrees Celsius and the underside near the CPU was almost too hot to touch. By the time the second test overnight, the CPU Diode was reporting a temperature of 101 degrees Celsius.

On a desktop, that would have me worried. On a notebook, it’s super scary for 2 main reasons:

  • First 100°C is the top-end temperature for Core i7 parts, above this thermal throttling kicks in. Ideally, a well-designed system that’s not been overclocked shouldn’t come close to this max temperature, even when benchmarked.
  • Another worry is that the underside thermal sensors aren’t picking up on the hot spot being generated on the unibody chassis.

It seems that there may be a few design flaws in Apple’s plan to cram a Core i7 into a fancy aluminum box. This could very well be a fine example of style trumping practicality.

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