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Author Topic: High Pitched Noise
Member # 7166

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When I scroll a web site on the Internet I hear a high pitched noise. I'm using an IBM ThankPad, Pentium 4 processor. Has anyone else experienced this, know what it might be, or am I going crazy?
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Member # 1405

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Griffin, this is a common problem for many different computer systems. Laptop and desktop alike. Check out here for some specific possibilities for the thinkpad.
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Member # 10470

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I've noticed this on many computers with crappy fans. Scrolling is not usually a hardware-accelerated graphics operation, so it can eat CPU power. When you are surfing the web, your CPU is idling pretty much all the time, but when you scroll, usage spikes. On a laptop, the fan speed is adjustable and the operating system revs it up when the cpu usage goes up. This is probably what makes the noise. If the cpu is under a steady load, the fans will spin faster and that can sometimes make them quieter.

When I'm come across a computer like that, I usually start up a python interpreter and set it in an infinite loop. Even if that doesn't make things quieter, it makes the noise level constant and less distracting. It is sometimes also possible to change the operating system's policies for setting the fan speed. (If you were running linux, I could help you more).

Make sure your laptop is not too dusty inside. That contributes a lot to fan noise and also makes the fan have to run more often.

It is also possible for the solid-state components to emit a high-pitched noise. In this case, it could be the CPU squeals at certain clock speeds. Try disabling SpeedStep for a while and see if the noise goes away or is constant. Note though that if you are over about 25, you can't hear noises that high-pitched and you are probably hearing a mechanical noise.

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