Thin and light laptops considered harmful

Yes, but kittehs will love it!


Laptops only have so many RGBs that they can give for their country.
MY country needs a LOT of RGBs.


Have you tried turning it off and on again hamburger Nutella?

(Video is cued.)

I agree, but that’s not what I’m saying. Most people do not use their laptops for video editing or even for gaming, most laptops provide enough power for schoolwork or the productivity most people require yet people will pay a premium for a Macbook when a less expensive, comparatively specced HP machine will do.

Is there anything wrong with this? No, not at the individual level, but in the aggregate, people tend to pay more for perceived rather than actual value.

What I’m saying is that this is in part a response to consumer demand.

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I must have misunderstood when the highest temp listed was 52 °C.

This has ALWAYS been a problem with laptops. They can get hot on one’s lap. The problem with thinner laptops is not that they can’t get rid of the heat. The problem is that the heat is generated right there on your lap, not on the display or some other part of the device not touching your body. I suppose some kind of advanced cooling system, perhaps Peltier effect, could transfer the heat to the vertical screen part of the laptop but that would require more power.

The usual alternative is to put the laptop on a desk, table or airplane tray table so it can get as hot as it wants without getting uncomfortable. If you look at the power users, they use their laptop with a desktop dock. They plug in a Thunderbolt port and drive three screens, a RAID array and whatever else makes them happy. They often leave the laptop closed, in “clamshell” mode. The big advantage of this is that they can take their laptop with them. They have their data and applications wherever they go, even places without a convenient wall outlet or network connection. They get the best of both worlds, portability and power.

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It has always seemed to me that the biggest problem isn’t the temperature itself, but that these horrendously expensive devices just can’t take the strain for very long before they need replacing, even if you otherwise carry them around in extensive padding and manage to avoid dropping them.

Perhaps the next step will be to introduce connectors for liquid cooling on airplanes and so on.

It’s not a fashion statement, it’s that a) nobody wants a heavier laptop and b) not every computer user needs a high performance machine. Long ago, the market for ultraportable computers was mostly frequent business travellers, for whom every pound shaved off the weight of their carryon was far more important than the speed of their laptop computer. Apple decided to enter the market, and totally pwned it with the Macbook Air - a very thin, very light computer with a full size keyboard and screen. After a few revisions, the Macbook Air became Apple’s most affordable laptop, and sold like hotcakes to ordinary people who didn’t need much computing power and appreciated having a laptop that you could toss in a bag with other stuff without really noticing the extra weight.

Enter the slump in sales of PCs. Every other maker of laptops, desperate for a product that would make more than one percent profit margins, glommed onto the “ultrabook” category of Macbook Air knockoffs. Miniaturization costs more, so they could sell them for more money and make better profits. Fast forward a few years, and “thin and light” has conquered a huge slice of the market.

The signals to PC makers from customers are overwhelmingly in favour of making laptops more portable, more convenient, less heavy. Even if you need oodles of power and performance, if your machine weighs eight pounds and the person next to you has one that weighs only four pounds, you’re going to envy them. So now you get high performance chips jammed into ultrabooks, and you get Apple deciding that all their computers needed to go on a severe diet.

But because physics is rather inflexible and unforgiving, you can’t get a thin/light high performance laptop without massive heat issues.


That’s just Apple tax. You play that much for a Mac because you want a Mac, either because you buy the advertising line or they just work better for you. Of course most Mac users probably don’t need a MacBook Pro and could make do with the MacBook Air.


Good news! I won’t be needing one of those anymore.


Well, if you buy a lightweight laptop that is so well engineered that it’ll keep functioning even when you are using it for work that really demands a desktop, it’ll get very hot.

(You could of course cool it with various accessories, or simply not run a workload that makes it hot, or put it on an insulated surface like a double wall cookie sheet. But that would be cheating!)

So make sure you buy a laptop that is too poorly engineered to be both lightweight and capable of high performance. That way, it won’t get hot. Problem solved.

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Here’s a very simple fix… and the cooler isn’t THAT much larger than the laptop!

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Wasn’t that “reportedly” just one youtub guy and Adobe software?

(Luer)-lock and load!

Nope. Several outlets including Ars have found similar results. Apple themselves have said that the MacBooks shipped with the wrong firmware.

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Some people believe some laptops could cause infertility.

And that the firmware update they have pushed out today solves the throttling issue.



So, am I blessed to have an aging-but-not-ailing mid-2010 MacBook Pro and not one of these young imposters?

I recently installed a 1TB SSD, upgraded to El Capitan and am very pleased with my “new” MBP…

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