If I connect a 4K monitor (or two) to Librem 15 (or upcoming 14), will the fans become louder?

I want to know to what extent 4K monitors use up my CPU or graphics card (or anything else that causes fan noise).


Surely some of you rascals have tried connecting a 4K monitor or two to a Purism laptop? :slight_smile:

I can’t imagine a satisfying answer to that question. It will entirely depend on what you are running. Simply connecting one or two 4K monitors with no activity won’t fire up the fan. Playing games instead will most certainly increase CPU load and the need for heat discharge when calculating more pixels.

What kind of answer did you envision?

Well, all I was wondering is, does sending pixel data to a monitor in and of itself require any CPU/GPU cycles at all - or enough to increase fan speed?

Your game example is perfect: When playing a really CPU/GPU intensive 3D game, is the increased fan speed due 98% of the game itself and 2% because of pixels being sent to the monitor?

BTW, I rarely play such games. My goal is mostly to figure out whether connecting 4K monitors will make my computer louder at all for normal, every day use (word processor, moving around windows, etc.).

Unfortunately “normal, every day use (word processor, moving around windows, etc.)” Is very subjective.

My experience with 1080p vs 4k screen driving is that the cpu/gpu increase is negligible. That said I wasn’t using a librem product but have used several other products in the past including (raspberry pi 4b, pc with 2ghz amd athlon and onboard graphics, dell laptop, etc). Being as the worst case difference for the systems I used was a 4% increase in resources (for word processing and web browsing) I wouldn’t expect the resolution increase alone to cause the fan to need to ramp up.

With that said, I have found that increasing the number of screens connected tends to result in using more applications and leaving more windows open than compared to fewer screens. This may result in more cpu/gpu usage and a need for the fans to ramp up, and would be indirectly caused by those 4k screens.


Thanks a lot, this is exactly what I was looking for :slight_smile: