I have recently had a great deal of trouble purchasing a new Pentium M thin and light notebook.
I am a professional programmer for a big bank and also a masters student studying programmer (Comp Sci). In other words I will be using the laptop a lot and pushing it a fair bit.
Originally I went to purchase the Dell D600 laptop but I had been warned about heat issues from placing the hard drive under the wrist pad. Knowing how hot hard drives get and also trying out the laptop I found that it did indeed get quite warm (not hot) but still with continual use VERY uncomfortable.
Eventually I purchased the IBM T40 which i was told (CNET) did not have heat problems. Only to find it too had the hard drive under the wrist pad. Again this is very very uncomfortable and not only that warm air seems to seep up from the trackpad buttons onto my wrist causing pain. IBM agreed to return the laptop.
I then looked into buying an Acer 803Lci as a replacement. But it too has the Hard drive under the wrist pad. Are the designers of these laptops just stupid? Who would place one of the hottest components under the place where you have your hand the most?
Has anyone else had similar issues? Is there a Pentium M thin and light laptop that doesn't have these issues?
I just purchased a T40 and under extreme notebook crunching it does get warm, but that was only during the massive install of windows updates. It is way less heat intensive compared to my older Compaq & Toshiba PIII's. I do have a Fujitsu P2110 that runs the Curuso Processor thats stays very cool, but its not a performance machine like the new Centino's. I am no expert, but with the new Thin and Light notebooks, I can't figure out where else they'd be able to fit the HD. Maybe Rapture know
i have noticed the same thing too with many centrino laptops. although i dont own one, i am shopping around for a new laptop and the centrino's i checked out at local stores (acer 800, hp x1000 etc) did feel quite warm. maybe ill go for a p4-m.
If its the HD thats getting hot then I don't think different processors is going to help. From what I understand, the Centrino is a much cooler running processor. I think it may be due to the fact that the Centrino is found in many of the Thin and Light models which is cramped for space, thus pushing the HD to the wrist pad. Personally, I am glad to have my T40 over the old PIII Toshiba. It still runs cooler, with way better battery and light weight.
You can't just narrow the problem down to "Centrino" based systems. Most new notebooks have the HDD under the wrist pad, and frankly, the HDD is one of the COOLEST running parts of a mobile computer. The CPU by far being the hottest. GPU next, Memory after that. 5400rpm notebook HDDs get quite warm, but they shouldn't exceed 65'C. I can tell you, I have a Pentium-M notebook, and the HDD (5400rpm) rarely reaches 45'C even on a fairly hot day (30'C). I can feel the one side is warmer, but it doesn't bother me.
Besides, if it is not under the palmrest, it is bound to be under the keyboard - that way you can have hot fingers, not a hot palm (I know from experience (Inspiron 8200)
The reason that most manufacturers have started pushing their HDD modules to the front of notebooks, is because they are getting faster, and thus hotter. If they have hot electronics surrounding them, it is more difficult to passively dissipate the heat produced.
You should also be aware that the Pentium-M runs much, much, MUCH cooler than a P4-m.
Who's General Failure and why's he reading my disk?
If you could care less about performance, I have no problem with my Pentium-m notebook, rarely hear the cooling fan kicking in. (latitude c400, still could be easily found at dell outlet). If not, go get a crusoe powered notebook, they run so cool that they don't even need a cooling fan.