Consumer Reports: New iPad hits 116 degrees running games,’very warm but not especially uncomfortable’

Earlier today, we reported that the “heatgate” controversy was starting to pick up media attention with Consumer Reports announcing it is officially investigating the issue. Consumer Reports has now published its report claiming the new iPad “can run significantly hotter than the earlier iPad2 model when running an action game.” In fact, its tests with a thermal imaging camera found the new iPad could hit 116 degrees, which is much hotter than 92.5 Fahrenheit recorded in earlier GL benchmark tests. The tests were conducted with LTE turned off and Wi-Fi running.

Consumer Reports explained:
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The new iPad runs 10 degrees hotter, visualized

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I mentioned in my review that the new iPad runs a little hotter than the iPad 2. While it is not a game-changer on its own, it is certainly something to note when choosing between an iPad 2 and a new iPad. Those extra graphics cores powering all of those beautiful little pixels likely cause the extra heat. For me, the heat was strongest on the left side of the device where the motherboard strip is.

Dutch website Tweakers.net (via Engadget) did 5 minutes of GL benchmark on both an iPad 2 (right) and the new iPad (left). According to the website’s measurements, Cupertino’s new flagship slab reached 33.6C (92.5 Fahrenheit) versus 28.3C (82.9 Fahrenheit) with the iPad 2.

As you can see from the image above, the gradient of heat gets strongest where the motherboard is positioned toward the bottom.

Update: Apple responded today with a canned:

“The new iPad delivers a stunning Retina display, A5X chip, support for 4G LTE plus 10 hours of battery life, all while operating well within our thermal specifications. If customers have any concerns they should contact AppleCare.”

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