Thursday, June 09, 2005

iMac G5 and the new MacTel machines: it's about heat

The sad story of the iMac G5 is one of the best illustrations of how badly IBM's chip design has gone (I'm still planning to buy one....).

Macintouch iMac G5 (Part 10)

Rob Porter

Is there a specific number of imac G5 users that have had these various problems mentioned on this site? I browse through this and many other sites that touch on the problems of the imac G5 but, I have failed to see a number that shows the comparison of imac G5s sold to the imac G5s returned for problems. I am an IT person at a large company (100 machines) and all but 14 of our machines are imac G5s and G4s, the rest are powermacs and 4 wintel machines. As of yet we have had no problems nor symptoms. Is there a specific run of machines that were affected?

[We have] 28 total imac G5s in a fairly cool large building but only 2 are used for graphics or photo editing and they are on automatic setting for the processor. All the machines stay on all the time and the only thing I have seen is were the sleep light stays constant instead of pulsing and only pulse when put to sleep by the power button.

[Ric Ford, MacInTouch]

The problem appears to cross a wide range of iMac G5's, occasionally affecting even the second revision now shipping, although some components have been changed. Previous statistics from repair depots and multiple-unit purchasers were not encouraging - well into the double digit percentages.

I'm fairly sure that it's a heat-related issue, which in turn relates directly to processor loads and modes. If you run your systems in a cool environment at low processor loads, I think it's less likely you'll see failures. I'm currently running my own very-early 20' model at 'Reduced' processor speed to try and keep it healthy, since I don't have any hours to waste on repair hassles. This makes it slower than a cheap eMac, but it's also quieter, and I seldom need high performance, plus I've still got the beautiful big screen.

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