Diablo® III

Please STOP spinning my fans

You said it rockets up to 6200rpm? That sounds like the upper bracket that the system is allowed to set it to, however that is far above that any third party application can interface to tell it to go to. I have a late 2008 MBP and the range that is allowed to be suggested to the system is between 2000 and 6000 rpm. However if the system deems it necessary, it can push it up to 6200 rpms. If you try to set it to this or higher through a third party app the system will only recognize the high end of the bracket, for me that is the 6000 rpms. What you are describing sounds like a problem with the SMC itself. Please do try reseting the SMC, and the PRAM and see if that changes anything for you. Do also check for any firmware updates for your mac.

I am still not going to change my stance on this as it is a fact that using the GPU and CPU causes more heat to be generated. This isn't an over-time thing, as soon as you start putting demand on the graphics card and the CPU, and the more powerful each are then the more heat they are going to generate. The fact that you don't see a significant increase in heat should go to show you that you have a mac that is operating properly and is preventing itself from getting too hot. You want it to get hot, then it is still going to run the fans on high to cool down. I can only assume you are trying to reach some middle-ground here on fan noise to heat ratio. I have more faith in the apple engineering team than you do in deeming how the hardware should operate. If it is that much of a bother then I would suggest buying yourself some studio headphones or a surround sound system to play the game with.


I get what you're saying, and I appreciate your attention and your help [no sarcasm], but I've dropped even the resolution down to bottom (not even sure if that would do anything). And I play with everything turned off and low fx enabled (with the exception being earlier, when I was following this post that claimed high shadow/high fps cap fixed gameplay issues.

But the thing is, I'm able to run other games from this era, and with higher settings (including 1.02 D3). It just... doesn't... make sense >.<

And please know that my frustration comes from the fact that I truly do enjoy this game and have invested a lot of time into it. I am fighting with everything I can not to be forced back to Diablo 2 until 2015 when I could get a new comp or a new upgrade piece sooner.

Anyways, looks like this thread is all opinions/no-ideas now with no Blue post follow up to be found. At least I was responded to though, which I appreciate. Thanks everyone.

Edit: I was finally able to get the RPMs to drop a TINY bit though it happened randomly and I couldn't pin it on which of the steps I in order to pursue further. It was not enough to pass that "one-level-down" noise threshold though :-/ and that's all I needed.
Edited by LostMan#1541 on 10/10/2012 12:43 PM PDT
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Then I would like to know what other games/apps you are comparing this to, because I am (going to say it again) the likelihood of this client hooking into the SMC and trying to suggest it new fan speeds is absurd. As a matter of principle of the thing, it wouldn't take that long to rev up to full fan speed power, it should take about 5-10 seconds tops, which is why this suggests to me that you are dealing with a problem with the computer, not the application. At the same time you might be 100% correct about this, however given the circumstances of how you would go about implementing this is seems highly unlikely that it is being done directly by the game.
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It sounds like whatever app you are using is trying to pre-emptively warn you about something that shouldn't happen. The logicboard has a built-in safety measure that will actually force a shutdown if your internal temperatures reach unsafe levels to prevent hardware damage. This is called a "Thermal Shutdown" and will typically only happen if your heatsink and fans aren't seated properly or functioning. This means you have a computer that wasn't assembled properly or has faulty hardware in it. If you are indeed right about your fan being dead, then I wouldn't use the computer until I got that replaced. Stuttering and performance problems can arise from hardware that isn't performing properly, such as in the case of overheating. However, overheating is when you are reaching the threshold for the Thermal Shutdown to be triggered, not due to constant use.

For example, when I run handbrake to rip a DVD to my computer I can see temps up to 105C. This is because handbrake puts a LOT of demand on the hardware to do the video encoding as fast as possible. When playing demanding games, it isn't unusual to see temperatures of the CPU and GPU reach anywhere from 85-100C. Yes that is VERY hot, but that is well within the operating temperatures of the computer before you start reaching the "danger zone" for what is classified as "overheating". Like I said I would get that fan replaced, and if you are seeing the temps at levels you don't think are normal then put the computer somewhere that would get more airflow. It is also possible that you might have dust clogging your air-intake vents. To get those cleaned then take it to an applestore or a apple certified technical so that they can open it and clean it out for you.

You also have to give the temperature sense a bit of leeway on readings. They are pretty accurate, but always take it with a grain of salt considering it is a temperature sensor that is surrounded by metal that is retaining heat. always read the temperature it gives you as plus/minus a few degrees.


The fan in the mac mini is being replaced, I'm not using atm precisely to prevent any further damage.

Right now I'm using a brand new Macbook and I'm experiencing the same problems: high temperatures, high RPM and game performance issues.

Since these issues are happening with 2 different computers (with different specs and one brand new), and also to other mac users, I'm pretty sure is not a hardware/assembly/dust/environment problem.
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Yes, which is why I said that those temperatures aren't uncommon when running highly demanding games. if they can run high and keep it cool, such as in the case of LostMan then they are doing their job. At the same time if they are running high and it is running hot that is just how the MBP models are built. I have a late 2008 MBP, I have friends with prior models and models ranging all the way up to the present. MBPs run hot because there is very little airflow in the tight design. The aluminum casing itself also acts as a passive heatsink to help cool them down. If you want a mac that doesn't run so hot then I would suggest looking at the Mac Pro line up as that has better airflow and more internal space.
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I'm using a Macbook Pro atm, dear.

Although it is true that high temperatures and RPM are common when running games like D3, this is just too high, and it's causing performance issues, not only to me, but to several other users.

As LostMan said, I value your help, I just don-'t understand why you insist on saying there isn't a D3 related problem with macs when several users are reporting it (if you check other threads). Of course it won't be exactly the same problem for all of us, as we use different machines, but there certainly is an issue, as we have tried applying the advice given by Blizzard and by other users like you, and the problem remains.

I do have a question for LostMan, did this start last week, after the last OS X update?
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Oh, I do believe there are many performance related problems with D3, I have reported a number myself. I would like to make the distinction, however, that high temps and fan speeds aren't only a problem with Diablo 3. By that same token, as I have repeatedly posted about in this section, overheating isn't causing the performance problems with the game. You can reproduce problems with performance problems without heat in the equation.
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Blizzard Employee
Posts: 14,784
DirkGently has some valid points here.

10/10/2012 03:08 PMPosted by DirkGently
By that same token, as I have repeatedly posted about in this section, overheating isn't causing the performance problems with the game. You can reproduce problems with performance problems without heat in the equation.


This is what has been logged as a bug, which Vasadan noted on his known issues list:

It is possible for certain machines to experience "stuttering" when all of the game's assets are fully loaded. Our testing has concluded on this issue and Blizzard hopes to have this resolved in a future patch.

The game doesn't control the fans, the SMC has the master control. The computer will set the fan speed to what it thinks it is required to cool down. I spoke to the team about this, and this is something that they haven't been able to reproduce, unless they force it to by blocking the vents, playing in a warm room, and playing on soft surfaces (a lap, pillow, table that has cotton table cloth and retains heat, etc).

Now you mentioned you resinstalled the OS and etc, but have you done a SMC reset? Resetting the SMC does reset to default settings as this is the same SMC that controls fans so if it was altered in anyway (bad software updates, kenrel panics, etc), this may help. Without being able to reproduce the spinning fans issue ourselves we aren't able to do much until we can see what else may be happening.
Edited by Machkhan on 10/10/2012 5:08 PM PDT
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90 Human Priest
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Posts: 13,922
Those of you here having heat/fan issues, are you using the Intel HD chipset, or are you using the discrete GPU? While the system is supposed to automatically switch over, it sometimes does not (for the laptops), which can cause the integrated GPU to really heat up since it's choking on its own bottlenecks.

You can read this article to learn how to disable automatic switching for when you want to play games:

http://support.apple.com/kb/HT4110

Can you also check Diablo 3's CPU load in Activity Monitor? Open Activity Monitor first, and switch to its System Memory tab. Launch Diablo 3 and once in-game (not the Launcher), CMD-TAB out to Activity Monitor and check the % CPU column. It should be 40% or less (usually less than 30%).

You can also download iStat Menus or Temperature Monitor to check the status of your temperature sensors and fans.

iStat Menus: http://bjango.com/mac/istatmenus/

Temperature Monitor: http://www.bresink.com/osx/TemperatureMonitor.html

You'll want to check both the fan RPM listings and temperature sensor readings. This is useful because you may have a faulty fan that is causing any additional fan in the system to ramp up to maximum to attempt to offset the loss of the faulty fan.

Also, this thread is a good read for helping with heat related problems. It is in the WoW forums, but applies to D3 as well for most parts:

http://us.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/6490539797

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Tia, while what you suggest about the graphics cards not switching is indeed possible I fear it is not likely in a properly functioning mac. The process behind that switch is triggered when you are calling on accessing the lower level graphics frameworks, the OS can detect this automatically by what libraries and framework you are loading on launch. This is why some apps, such as skype would trigger the discrete graphics card on launch, because it was loading the libraries it needed for video conferencing at launch (how the binary works and needs to load).

As for checking on CPU load that is subjective to what hardware you are running it on. Unlike Windows, OS X measures CPU cycle usage in a percentage of usage on a single core against number of cores. On Windows your usage is based out of 100%, this means if you have a dual core and a quad core, and both are pegged, then they will both read 100% usage. On OS X that would read near 200% usage and near 400% usage, respectively. However like a number of games if you have the frame-rate limiter on, then upon tabbing out of the game you are allowing it to drastically slow down and let off the throttle on what it is trying to process per second. HOWEVER, if you open up Activity Monitor and watch that while you are in-game, then that will give you an accurate reading on what it is running at.

iStat menus is fantastic and I have heard good things about Temperature Monitor. I am also fan of SMCFanControl (http://www.macupdate.com/app/mac/23049/smcfancontrol), and I would recommend this as well. I have had a number of people from apple suggest using that as a means to regulate fans and internal temperatures.
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This game runs extremely hot but I also blame Apple. The Macbook/Macbook Pro has sacrificed ventilation for 'design' i.e. aluminum unibody.

Asking the devs to reduce heat is a waste of time. What we do need is a stop to the now infamous 'rubber-banding' that plagues the game (disabling us from playing hardcore) and general FPS improvements.

I say FPS improvements, which is included in the now globally renown 'stuttering' category. There is something fishy with the physics in this game that don't align with mediocre hardware, which macs typically have.

I have an i7, 4gb ram, 330M mbpro and desperately seek improvements in the near future.
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90 Human Priest
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10/12/2012 05:45 AMPosted by DirkGently
As for checking on CPU load that is subjective to what hardware you are running it on. Unlike Windows, OS X measures CPU cycle usage in a percentage of usage on a single core against number of cores. On Windows your usage is based out of 100%, this means if you have a dual core and a quad core, and both are pegged, then they will both read 100% usage. On OS X that would read near 200% usage and near 400% usage, respectively. However like a number of games if you have the frame-rate limiter on, then upon tabbing out of the game you are allowing it to drastically slow down and let off the throttle on what it is trying to process per second. HOWEVER, if you open up Activity Monitor and watch that while you are in-game, then that will give you an accurate reading on what it is running at.


The value I gave is based on OS X, not Windows. Thankfully OS X is consistent across processor types in how it displays its core usage. Since there isn't a whole lot of variation in CPU speed (about 1 GHz max average variance between upper and lower tier CPUs used in Macs/MB/MBPs), the percentage won't vary by more than about 10-15% across the lineup.

D3 isn't great at using multiple cores, and in fact really doesn't need to since it isn't doing a whole lot relative to what it could. The physics however do take their toll when you destroy objects or use a high particle count spell/ability against a large number of mobs, but thankfully putting physics on Low doesn't detract from the game (and in fact helps even out those FPS spikes).

You'd be surprised at just how often a software related issue prevents the GPUs from switching over, and in some cases (thankfully rare, though that makes them really hard to troubleshoot) the game is unable to detect what GPU you're using (the "unable to create OpenGL device" error) and thus you get stuck using the integrated GPU when you should be using the discrete GPU. Usually a reboot and/or SMC reset fixes this.

An integrated GPU at max load will put out more heat than a more powerful discrete GPU at moderate load. It's always worth trying the graphics switching step as a troubleshooting step to eliminate a variable from the equation. :)

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Agreed. I am pleased to see some more knowledgeable people helping out on these boards with support questions.

EDIT: didn't mean to seem like I was challenging you on any point, most people don't know the system that deep so I wanted to make sure that people understood the difference per platform and didn't take the numbers at face value.
Edited by DirkGently#1944 on 10/12/2012 12:41 PM PDT
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90 Human Priest
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Agreed. I am pleased to see some more knowledgeable people helping out on these boards with support questions.

EDIT: didn't mean to seem like I was challenging you on any point, most people don't know the system that deep so I wanted to make sure that people understood the difference per platform and didn't take the numbers at face value.


Oh trust me, I wasn't offended in the least. As far as I'm concerned, it's always nice to have a second set of eyes or second head in the troubleshooting department. Sometimes a different perspective can make all the difference in the world, as one person may suggest one thing that triggers an idea in the next person that actually solves the problem.

Teamwork makes tech support so much easier sometimes. :)

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Software:

System Software Overview:

System Version: Mac OS X 10.6.8 (10K549)
Kernel Version: Darwin 10.8.0
64-bit Kernel and Extensions: No
Time since boot: 2:50

Hardware:

Hardware Overview:

Model Name: iMac
Model Identifier: iMac11,3
Processor Name: Intel Core i7
Processor Speed: 2.93 GHz
Number Of Processors: 1
Total Number Of Cores: 4
L2 Cache (per core): 256 KB
L3 Cache: 8 MB
Memory: 8 GB
Processor Interconnect Speed: 4.8 GT/s
Boot ROM Version: IM112.0057.B00
SMC Version (system): 1.59f2

Graphics/Displays:

ATI Radeon HD 5750:

Chipset Model: ATI Radeon HD 5750
Type: GPU
Bus: PCIe
PCIe Lane Width: x16
VRAM (Total): 1024 MB
Vendor: ATI (0x1002)
Device ID: 0x68a1
Revision ID: 0x0000
ROM Revision: 113-B9710C-238
EFI Driver Version: 01.00.417
Displays:
iMac:
Resolution: 2560 x 1440
Pixel Depth: 32-Bit Color (ARGB8888)
Main Display: Yes
Mirror: Off
Online: Yes
Built-In: Yes
Connection Type: DisplayPort
Display Connector:
Status: No Display Connected

Other:

Input Source ID: com.apple.keylayout.US
Keyboard Layout: ANSI
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