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View Full Version : My new macbook air battery life




shah1
Nov 3, 2010, 12:11 PM
Hi guys,
Firstly, would like to say that is my first mac and I am loving it. I've got the new 13" 1.86ghz 128gb and the upgraded ram 4gb. Now I've fully charged it and left it on a further 2 hours or so, following the instructions for calibrating the battery. Now that I'm using the macbook, I'm noticing the battery going down fairly quick, already at 88% after 30mins of use. Is it supposed to go down this quick? Or could there be something wrong?



spinnerlys
Nov 3, 2010, 12:13 PM
It has to do with CPU activity thus:

Have a look at Activity Monitor ( Applications / Utilities / *) and select All Processes*and sort by CPU to see what the culprit may be.

image below uses sorting by CPU as an example
http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4141/4745264042_9c23afdbc9_b.jpg

shah1
Nov 3, 2010, 12:20 PM
I don't think I've gone over 10% in total mate.

JimKirk
Nov 3, 2010, 01:56 PM
I think battery life sucks.

I am getting like 3-4 hours with LIGHT use.

Safari
Excel
PARALLELS for outlook.

Outlook for Mac pretty much sucks.

Caolan96
Nov 3, 2010, 02:10 PM
I think battery life sucks.

I am getting like 3-4 hours with LIGHT use.

Safari
Excel
PARALLELS for outlook.

Outlook for Mac pretty much sucks.

are you kidding me? parallels will absolutely suck your battery dry.

shah1
Nov 3, 2010, 02:36 PM
Well guys I've been using the mac for just over 3 hours nows and I'm still showing 60% remaining! This is off my first charge. Think thats not too bad!

itommyboy
Nov 3, 2010, 03:00 PM
I think battery life sucks.

I am getting like 3-4 hours with LIGHT use.

Safari
Excel
PARALLELS for outlook.

Outlook for Mac pretty much sucks.


You mention Parallels for outlook. Then you say Outlook for Mac pretty much sucks. It's a bit confusing so a couple of thoughts:

1) Parallels or any VM ware will drain your battery quite rapidly

2) They never had Outlook for Mac until a few weeks ago, with the new Office Mac 2011 which no longer has Entourage but a full blown version of Outlook that runs natively on Mac

My suggestion is that if you only use Parallels to be able to use Outlook in windows, buy Office Mac 2011 (http://www.amazon.com/s/?ie=UTF8&keywords=mac+office+2011&tag=googhydr-20&index=aps&hvadid=4723639817&ref=pd_sl_78bt8anej6_b) and you can have the best of both worlds as well as better battery life.

JimKirk
Nov 3, 2010, 08:18 PM
Trust me it sucks:

1) does not work with exchange 2003 except imap
2) does not sync with iCal wth
3) constantly get errors connecting to sime things like gmail.

MS gimped it so business would stick with windows version

It is missing a ton of features outlook 2010 has like rpc over http.

Oh and my Vm is using like 2% CPU while outlook runs.

Seems like any wifi app will kill battery. Installing apps from time capsule same thing. Drops usage to like 2 hours.

Seems like apple fudged numbers like usual. I called apple and they told me 7 hours if you don't do anything. Lame

revelated
Nov 3, 2010, 08:32 PM
Oh and my Vm is using like 2% CPU while outlook runs.


Doesn't matter. Just running Parallels and/or VMWare will destroy the battery life even if it's not actively doing anything.

aristobrat
Nov 3, 2010, 08:37 PM
Seems like apple fudged numbers like usual. I called apple and they told me 7 hours if you don't do anything. Lame
So how long does your Air last when you measure its battery life doing a test similar to what Apple did to come up with the 7 hour figure?

The wireless productivity test measures battery life by wirelessly browsing 25 popular websites with display brightness set to 50%
http://www.apple.com/macbookair/specs.html

Perdification
Nov 3, 2010, 08:49 PM
I'm sure apple didn't fudge the numbers. It's more due to the way that you use it, and not that they're cheating you. They've already clearly stated the conditions for it to have a 7 hour battery life.

missfriend
Nov 3, 2010, 09:44 PM
Hi guys,
Firstly, would like to say that is my first mac and I am loving it. I've got the new 13" 1.86ghz 128gb and the upgraded ram 4gb. Now I've fully charged it and left it on a further 2 hours or so, following the instructions for calibrating the battery. Now that I'm using the macbook, I'm noticing the battery going down fairly quick, already at 88% after 30mins of use. Is it supposed to go down this quick? Or could there be something wrong?

How long have you bought the phone? Is It brand new? If it is a brand new phone and you just bought it for several weaks, you'd better go the store and ask for a new one. If I were you, I will do that.

Poochi
Nov 4, 2010, 01:03 AM
Battery sucks when you have flash in safari running background 3hours
Without flash I get 10 hours surfing.

EARL97850
Nov 4, 2010, 01:25 AM
So, if parallels drains your battery so much and you need to run Internet Explorer for work programs what's a guy to do?

Cya

macbook123
Nov 4, 2010, 01:35 AM
Well guys I've been using the mac for just over 3 hours nows and I'm still showing 60% remaining! This is off my first charge. Think thats not too bad!

What screen brightness are you using? I'm getting 2 hours with light internet use at 80-90% brightness. I'm guessing the brightness is the culprit in my case but it's too dark for my eyes at half brightness.

pfjellman
Nov 4, 2010, 01:48 AM
install click-to-flash. it's the first thing i do on any mac, especially a laptop.

after calibrating my battery properly, installing click-to-flash, and using this thing for a full week, i can confirm that it gets 9-10 or more hours of battery life with light/moderate use and 6-7 hours or more with heavy use.

i've done photo editing with photoshop, programming with xCode and REALbasic, watched tv shows and movies streaming from my mac pro server, browsed plenty of websites, checked out steam, played some starcraft 2, and lots of other things as well.

my gf also has used it extensively. she has chat apps running, myspace and facebook chatting and showing flash, youtube, iwork, iphoto, starcraft 2, etc. etc. we have both been very happy with the battery life in the 13" AirBook.

the one thing i haven't tested, however, is running virtualized environments. i've been using and developing software for macs for over 15 years - i could never bring myself to use windows daily for any task. i do have it installed on my mac pro solely for the purpose of playing crysis warhead and crysis 2 when it comes out.

pfjellman
Nov 4, 2010, 01:50 AM
What screen brightness are you using? I'm getting 2 hours with light internet use at 80-90% brightness. I'm guessing the brightness is the culprit in my case but it's too dark for my eyes at half brightness.

i typically have my brightness at 75% or higher, still get plenty more than 2 hours.

right now with boxee open playing videos (which is death on the battery, i've noticed), and the brightness on max i still have 5 hours 52 minutes (and the battery isn't fully charged, it's at about 82%).

macbook123
Nov 4, 2010, 01:54 AM
i typically have my brightness at 75% or higher, still get plenty more than 2 hours.

right now with boxee open playing videos (which is death on the battery, i've noticed), and the brightness on max i still have 5 hours 52 minutes (and the battery isn't fully charged, it's at about 82%).

OK, that means my battery is broken. I thought the 7-hour number was based on 50% brightness.

pfjellman
Nov 4, 2010, 01:59 AM
OK, that means my battery is broken. I thought the 7-hour number was based on 50% brightness.

it went down to 3:59 right after i posted that message, so it may be closer to 4 than 5.

however, i was getting really bad battery performance as well for the first 2-3 days after i got the airbook. i thought i calibrated the battery correctly, but after really becoming disappointed, i calibrated it again and gave it another shot, and ever since then the battery has been kickin ass. be sure you calibrate once or twice before sending it back. can't hurt!

macbook123
Nov 4, 2010, 02:17 AM
it went down to 3:59 right after i posted that message, so it may be closer to 4 than 5.

however, i was getting really bad battery performance as well for the first 2-3 days after i got the airbook. i thought i calibrated the battery correctly, but after really becoming disappointed, i calibrated it again and gave it another shot, and ever since then the battery has been kickin ass. be sure you calibrate once or twice before sending it back. can't hurt!

I was just going to ask you about calibration! I haven't calibrated mine yet, but it's only been on battery for 5 hours or so combined. Will calibrate it ASAP.

pfjellman
Nov 4, 2010, 02:48 AM
I was just going to ask you about calibration! I haven't calibrated mine yet, but it's only been on battery for 5 hours or so combined. Will calibrate it ASAP.

good plan. let us know how it goes, or if you have any other questions.

Loonytik
Nov 4, 2010, 09:10 AM
I got my MBA 13 yesterday and immediately started the battery calibration. After removing the power adapter I got roughly 6 hours of use before it went to sleep. I was installing all of my programs, using Firefox and Safari a good bit, Instant messaging, couple of HD videos, setting up shared networking etc. Basically all the things you would do when getting a new laptop.

I had the brightness set at 50% the whole time. I'm happy with the results so far and hope to get even more use once the calibration is complete(sleeping for the recommended 5 hours or more right now).

Pine Pienaar
Nov 4, 2010, 09:45 PM
Trust me it sucks:

1) does not work with exchange 2003 except imap
2) does not sync with iCal wth
3) constantly get errors connecting to sime things like gmail.

MS gimped it so business would stick with windows version

It is missing a ton of features outlook 2010 has like rpc over http.

Oh and my Vm is using like 2% CPU while outlook runs.

Seems like any wifi app will kill battery. Installing apps from time capsule same thing. Drops usage to like 2 hours.

Seems like apple fudged numbers like usual. I called apple and they told me 7 hours if you don't do anything. Lame


I bought Office 11 student version as Outlook on Windows sucks.
Typical Microsoft ploy frankly I am tired of them.
Mail for Mac is fine for me:p
Regards

hcho3
Nov 4, 2010, 10:18 PM
Here we go with whiners who cannot stop talking crap about new MBA. Fine, then why don't u go buy urself a PC that is a lot thicker and heavier? Good luck using your trackpad on PC.

dmelgar
Nov 4, 2010, 10:34 PM
I'm extremely impressed with the battery life on the 11.6" MBA. I easily got 6 hours with significant use. I have a 2009 13" Macbook Pro who's battery is rated for 8 hours. It gets no where near that. Based on today, it looks like the MBA is getting better battery life than my Macbook Pro.

revelated
Nov 5, 2010, 08:26 AM
So, if parallels drains your battery so much and you need to run Internet Explorer for work programs what's a guy to do?

Cya

Doubtful that you "need" IE. Unless the work programs are 100% ActiveX driven, in which case you're SOL.

I'd be willing to bet though that anything that you need to run, can run in either Chrome or FireFox.

Loonytik
Nov 5, 2010, 08:53 AM
Seems like apple fudged numbers like usual. I called apple and they told me 7 hours if you don't do anything. Lame

I got a full 6 hours out of my 13 inch with almost constant use. I'm wondering, to those that are complaining about battery life, exactly how long do you think the battery should last? I mean really....should a battery on a laptop last 10 hours with constant use? Are you on the go so much that you don't have a plugin to recharge?

Seems like 6 hours of constant usage from a laptop is really good. Especially one where the battery is so thin that it's only 2.9lbs.

I'm just saying....

nylon
Nov 5, 2010, 09:45 AM
I'm finding the power management on these machines is a little wonky. The 'estimated times', either on battery or while charging are very jumpy. Definitely not as consistent as on my 2009 13" MBP. Hopefully this will be fixed in a software/firmware update.

runnin17
Nov 5, 2010, 10:05 AM
I'm finding the power management on these machines is a little wonky. The 'estimated times', either on battery or while charging are very jumpy. Definitely not as consistent as on my 2009 13" MBP. Hopefully this will be fixed in a software/firmware update.

I think I remember reading somewhere that apple admitted this was an issue. Most likely because the power management, battery style and certain components are brand new. It doesn't really matter to me though. I very rarely look at the time. The percentage is good enough for me. When it gets down to about 5-10% left I know I have about 30 minutes of use before it goes to sleep. Depending on what I am doing of course.