You switch on your laptop to get some work done and you hear a high pitched noise or hissing sound. What you just heard was a coil whine. Here’s the truth about coil whine in your laptop and how to fix it.
What Is Coil Whine?
Coil whine is the high pitch noise that happens when an electric current passes through electromagnetic coils and causes it to vibrate at frequencies that can be registered by the ear.
The coils act like transformers or inductors which stabilize fluctuating electric current to appreciable levels.
The Dell XPS 13 is pretty much known for its coil whine. Coil whine pretty much affects quite a number of laptops.
But it is much more common in laptops that have Skylake (6th Generation Intel chip) and Kabylake (7th Generation Intel chip) processors. It sounds like scratches on glass, squeals or hisses.
What Causes Coil Whine?
Electromagnetic coils in your laptop act as transformers or inductors. Their job is to stabilize the electric current passing through them.
If a certain amount of current passes through. In this case, a high current it can cause the coils to vibrate at high frequencies which produces the high-pitched noise we call coil whine.
The higher the current the louder the sound it produces and vice versa.
Honestly, coil whine happens all the time but it only becomes noticeable when the noise it produces is at a frequency our ears can register.
It happens in all electrical devices all that matters is if your ears can hear it.
Is Laptop Coil Whine Bad?
Coil whine is neither bad nor does it affect the performance of your laptop. The reason why such a big deal is because of the annoying high-pitch sound it makes.
As explained above, it is a technical phenomenon that happens when a large amount of current passes through the electromagnetic coils.
It is basically doing its job by stabilizing the high current except that it makes a high-pitch sound. No need to worry about performance or hardware issues if your laptop has coil whine.
How To Fix Coil Whine?
To be honest, coil whine in a laptop is next to impossible to fix. Because the materials are soldered on the motherboard and removed it is either going to void your warranty or damage the hardware.
The best course of action is to either return the laptop for a replacement or send it back to your manufacturer to fix it.
Also, you can undervolt your laptop to reduce the amount of power it uses thereby getting rid of the noise. That’s all there is to getting rid of the high pitch sounds.
Desktop computers are different. You can actually solve the problem yourself by replacing the components or the motherboard itself. You can also get a new case for your PC hardware to dampen the noise.
Does Coil Whine Go Away?
Coil whine doesn’t really go away. The noise might be reduced or it might stop for a few weeks or days and start-up again. The only thing you can do is manage coil whine or reduce the noise it makes.
Is Coil Whine Covered By Warranty?
The goods news is that coil whine is covered by most warranties. Simply get in touch with your manufacturer and find out if the warranty covers coil whine.
Depending on their response you can return your laptop and get something less annoying.
How Do You Check Coil Whine?
Run a very demanding application on your laptop or PC and listen for any unusual high-pitched sounds.
Do All GPUs Have Coil Whine?
No, not all GPUs have coil whine.
Does Undervolting Reduce Coil Whine?
Yes, undervolting reduces coil whine. However, undervolting combined with dampening the component that you suspect is causing the coil whine is very effective.
Coil whine the culprit of hitch pitch noise coming from your laptop. It is not as bad as it seems and doesn’t affect performance. It is just a technical phenomenon that happens when a current passes through the electromagnetic coils.
The current then causes vibration. It basically happens in every electrical hardware. If the current is large enough it can cause the coils to vibrate at audible frequencies.
The audible vibrations are the high pitch sounds. If you can totally ignore then there’s no problem, If not, it is best to return the laptop or send it for repairs.