The max speed fan hardware button, aka: a dealbreaker for any high-performance/gaming laptop

I know that now it’s too early to talk about features request for possible new laptop models that haven’t even been announced or confirmed, but you probably are already gathering some ideas about and I’m scared to miss the right moment to suggest this, so here I am.

What am I asking for? Simply a button (maybe near the power one, or on the other side of the chassis) that when pressed it set any fan of the laptop to their maximum speed, ignoring any logic/fan curve they would have followed otherwise(and return to that logic when the button is pressed again). Most importantly, this button MUST work directly via the mobo firmware, not through the os.
Why is this something useful? I’d never thought about something like this if it wasn’t for my current laptop that has this exact feature and I love it so much. First of all, in more powerful machine it is easy that they get hot and a fan curve isn’t exactly what do you need to take care of it all the time. For example you want to move the laptop from a desk to your legs: the fan curve usually balance thermals and noise, but in this case you’re a usually willing to sacrifice silence in order to get the better possible temps in case you are running highly demanding task on the computer. Another possibile use case would be that you want to cool down the pc as soon as possible after an heavy task (maybe again because you want to move it on your lap), and the fan curve does that too slowly. In such situations the other alternative would be to manually tweak the curve fan (probably from the bios) every time, but this requires at least to reboot your machine, or to use a software that allows you to control the fan speed (but you would lose the ability to control it by a button). And this move us to the next point: why should this button works directly via firmware instead of passing through the os? The reason is that is much more reliable in this way. Don’t have to rely on the os allow you to use this feature every time you would need it: for example you are running a task that consume most of the memory available making the os very unresponsive until it completes and so you can simple press a button that instantly turn on the fans. Another use case that happed to me is while working on something at low level (like a kernel module, a bootloader or an init system on Linux) and you don’t have access to GUI or even a terminal.

Finally, let’s about this button more generally: using it for controlling the fans is how I’d use it most of the time, but this is not the only way to use it. It would be possible to assign to such a button(s) different effects directly from the bios: it could be used to turn off the screen without making the pc to sleep (I don’t think this is possible on windows without any third party program), to reset the machine, to be exposed to the os as a macro button (and then using a software on the os to configure the macro) or even as a media key. Moreover, if, as I understood, you are willing to move to an open source firmware like coreboot, this would allow anyone to code its own preferred functionality.

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You say this and yet… This pretty clearly isn’t a “gaming” laptop and not “high-performance”, so nothing to see here, please move along. And I don’t say that to be rude, you clearly titled it “Dealbreaker” in the title. OK. Consider deal broken.
I’ll be more specific in constructive criticism, since you got so deep in the weeds with this.
I think this is a perfect project for users, for hackers, to build after the fact, and perhaps even contribute to an aftermarket. I’ve been seeing improvements like this for Commodore64, Amgia, Apple II, it would be nice to be able to do it on a contemporary PC, but to me, its clearly a DIY project for those very few who might benefit.

Probably I wasn’t as clear as I would have been, but this “feature request” was for a new gaming/high-performance laptop model that they, I really hope, will do one day, not the current framework laptop.

Btw, the possibility to use such a button for things like turn off the screen could be a useful feature also for future revision of the framework laptop, still not a dealbreaker as it would be to control the fans on an high-end machine

Honestly the whole reason I even searched this topic up was because it was getting hot on my legs when I have sweats on, which was mentioned. I love the hinge on this thing for my lap, so I want to treat it nicely on there. :slight_smile:

I don’t know. The Framework with a eGPU is quite the gaming machine. (Heck even with the built in Intel XE graphics, gaming is possible.)

Only I think a software based max fan switch is more realistic, and is something that can be implemented on the Framework already. (Framework have already said they want to open up the EC for custom curves, etc.)

Combine that with a eGPU and viola you have quite a powerful gaming machine. One that is portable and truly repairable and intended to last.

Seems like a win win in my book.

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