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Macbook Airs have Airflow Problems

Sounds ironic, right? The Macbook called the "Air" has airflow problems. Airflow is one of the biggest reasons that most people do not game on Macbook Airs, and Macbooks in general. And that seems quite antithetical, because Apple products are supposed to be the best, and you'd think the best are supposed to be the most powerful, right? And it's true that they do pack a decent amount of power on paper, especially with the 16 inch models. However, they are getting violently bottlenecked by their thermals. Here's a diagram of the Macbook Air 13" interior.


This is a diagram of the Macbook Air 13". You might notice something interesting: there is only one fan. A world-class machine, cooled with just one tiny fan. For comparison, most desktops have at least two fans, all of which are three times as big as the Macbook Air's fan. Most gaming desktops have at least four. Having one fan means that the Macbook Air can take in cool air, but has no way to expel hot air. Additionally, both the graphics and general processing are contained in the CPU (the black square in the top middle), and the fan isn't even close to that. Why?

The simple answer is, Apple is trying to make the machine thinner. Much of Apple's appeal is their very sleek aesthetic. To achieve this, they have had to take some shortcuts in terms of thermals. Apple still has a positive airflow system, technically, but the components are going to be running very hot as the CPU does not have a fan on it.

So what do we think about Apple's design choices? Obviously, having such a slim aesthetic helps them bring in sales. It also allows the laptop to be slightly lighter, and much easier to fit in backpacks. However, in our opinion, Apple should thicken their laptops towards the front (the front is the thinnest part), and use the extra space to add in more fans, or even just vents. Having the laptop be an extra few millimeters slimmer does not really help too much with portability anyway.


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