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View Full Version : battery life on new 15"


Diatribe
Apr 25, 2004, 09:20 AM
I am ready to buy one of these sweet little pieces of technical evolution :D

The only thing I'd like to know before buying is how does the 15" do as far as the battery is concerned. The 12", as some posters said, reaches up to 5 hrs. So has anyone tried the new 15" yet?

Diatribe
Apr 26, 2004, 05:39 AM
Has nobody received their 15" yet?

173080
Apr 26, 2004, 06:32 AM
Has nobody received their 15" yet?

I have :D

I've used it for two days, and the battery life has been between 2:30 and 3:00 hours. Nowhere near 5 hours. Aside from battery life, this is the best computer I've ever used. :D

Bear
Apr 26, 2004, 07:03 AM
I have :D

I've used it for two days, and the battery life has been between 2:30 and 3:00 hours. Nowhere near 5 hours. Aside from battery life, this is the best computer I've ever used. :DBatetry life depends ever so much on how you use the machine and the energy saver settings.

Using the optical drive will chew through more power. How much you use the hard drive. etc.

I never expect the maximum time quoted by a laptop manufacturer as I never run that pergect mix at those settings.

The other difference that might help with the new iBooks and Powerbooks is that since the CPU was designed for energy saving modes, the dynamic frequency shifting works muc better with no real lag when you suddenly demand more of the CPUs resources.

So I guess the bottom line is check your energy saver settings and keep use of the optical drive down if it's going to be a while before you can get to a power outlet.

Diatribe
Apr 26, 2004, 12:44 PM
Geeez, 2.30 to 3 hrs.? That's as bad as the old ones. Or were you watching a DVD? How is the battery life when you just surf the web/type?

powerbook4me
Apr 26, 2004, 01:06 PM
Geeez, 2.30 to 3 hrs.? That's as bad as the old ones. Or were you watching a DVD? How is the battery life when you just surf the web/type?


They better get more than that :eek:

Thats pretty shotty considering they say 5 hours.

edit: and they say 6 hours for the iBook.

tveric
Apr 26, 2004, 01:29 PM
Thats pretty shotty considering they say 5 hours.


Shoddy. Not shotty.

I have the old 667 G4 PB, and it was also advertised at 5 hours. I've come close to that on a plane (about 4.5) - by lowering the brightness, muting audio, and not using the optical drive. I've also watched nearly 3 hours of DVD on a single charge.

Also, keep in mind that compared to the cost of the laptop, another battery is pocket change.

yoda13
Apr 26, 2004, 01:31 PM
I believe they say five hours for the 12 inch, and 4 1/2 hours for the other two powerbooks.

powerbook4me
Apr 26, 2004, 01:46 PM
Shoddy. Not shotty.
Also, keep in mind that compared to the cost of the laptop, another battery is pocket change.

I say Shotty.

and $100 is a little more than pocket change, heh.

Diatribe
Apr 26, 2004, 02:36 PM
So... any more people have sth. to add concerning the battery life?
And adding a second battery was not quite the advice I asked for... :p

D*I*S_Frontman
Apr 26, 2004, 03:14 PM
If time is your biggest consideration, try using an old Pismo with dual batteries. It will run OS X.3 just fine, is expandable to 1GB RAM, gets great Airport reception, are built like tanks, and the $160 aftermarket batteries are good for almost 40% more life than the stock ones, taking you near the ten hour mark if you set things up right. For $80 you can even add FW800 via a CardBus card (the stock FW set up is actually FW200, the very first implementation of FW in a Powerbook @ 1/2 speed of standard FW400).

They are dog-slow compared to the latest/greatest Apple offerings, but for surfing online at a hot spot, word processing, or watching a full-length DVD they are perfectly fine.

Mine is four years old. No dead/stuck pixels. Been dropped on a hardwood floor twice--no problems. Looks cool, ultra-expandable, takes a beating--a real-world laptop.

I know the new Ti/Al designs are elegant, but the dual expansion bay set-up is very useful. I wish they would bring it back in new designs. Perhaps the G5 PB we are all lusting after...

MacNut
Apr 26, 2004, 03:23 PM
Im surprised that somebody hasn't called Apple on the Battery issue regarding advertising, real world usage is nowhere near 4.5-5 hrs. Could this be called false advertising.

aswitcher
Apr 26, 2004, 03:28 PM
Wonder if the 17 is even less given the bigger screen?

titaniumducky
Apr 26, 2004, 03:29 PM
Im surprised that somebody hasn't called Apple on the Battery issue regarding advertising, real world usage is nowhere near 4.5-5 hrs. Could this be called false advertising.

Battery life quotes are always false. However, I can get about 4 hours on my Ti while working if managed correctly.

mikeyredk
Apr 26, 2004, 03:35 PM
are there any after market batteries for the new Al?

MacNut
Apr 26, 2004, 03:38 PM
are there any after market batteries for the new Al?


I think its too soon for aftermarket but I could be wrong

tveric
Apr 28, 2004, 01:59 PM
I say Shotty.

and $100 is a little more than pocket change, heh.

Well, you say (or type, really) it wrong, then. Look it up.

I was referring to $100 in relation to the cost of the laptop. Buy the high-end and you're talking a mere 3% added to the price. 3%, to me, is pocket change no matter the purchase. If I can afford a $200,000 house I like, and someone else bids $203,000, I wouldn't hesitate to pay $206,000. And $6,000 isn't "pocket change" either, by itself, but it's all relative.

Sorry about the 2nd battery "advice", but I did also share my own battery experiences, thought that might be helpful. Seriously, is $100 that much? And if you trust ebay, as many do, you can get one for under $60. That's cheap.

Diatribe
Apr 28, 2004, 02:24 PM
Well, you say (or type, really) it wrong, then. Look it up.

I was referring to $100 in relation to the cost of the laptop. Buy the high-end and you're talking a mere 3% added to the price. 3%, to me, is pocket change no matter the purchase. If I can afford a $200,000 house I like, and someone else bids $203,000, I wouldn't hesitate to pay $206,000. And $6,000 isn't "pocket change" either, by itself, but it's all relative.

Sorry about the 2nd battery "advice", but I did also share my own battery experiences, thought that might be helpful. Seriously, is $100 that much? And if you trust ebay, as many do, you can get one for under $60. That's cheap.

Don't be sorry. I wasn't trying to be smart, it was just that I was asking that question in order to make an overall decision on whether I want to buy the 15". That's why that "advice" wasn't what I asked for. That being said it was not unappreciated. :)
And I totally agree with you concerning the spare battery, although I guess I won't be having that much use for it with my new 12" that I am going to buy.

JFreak
Apr 28, 2004, 02:41 PM
I have the old 667 G4 PB, and it was also advertised at 5 hours. I've come close to that on a plane (about 4.5)

me too. i had the dvi-lowend model and had on average about 3.5h battery life, maxing at 4+ when something could be sacrificed. but this new 1.2GHz albook doesn't even peak at 3h, so this beauty just sits most of the time attached to power cable. with the tibook i could expect 3h heavy use, but now now it's reduced to 2h tops, and i mean in heavy use. i don't care how long it is possible to keep the thing on with screen almost off and doing nothing. for me it's the time of USE that counts. and the ti -> al transition has cost an hour, sadly...

Penman
Apr 28, 2004, 03:32 PM
I believe they say five hours for the 12 inch, and 4 1/2 hours for the other two powerbooks.

My Rev C 17" (2GB,80@5400,128,4xDVD) is unopened in a box on the sofa beside my Girlfriend's Rev A 15" (768MB,Superdrive,80@4200,64,2xDVD). I'm writing this on my Rev A 17" (1GB,60@4200,64,2xDVD). I've never seen more than 2 hrs from the Rev A and expect the C to be similar. Battery life sucks and sockets are mandatory.

I see that my charge indicator starts with an optomistic lie (like 2hrs 43 mins) and then rapidly drops within 30 mins to something like 1 hr 45 mins. I continue to lose a little time from there.

Seriously though - if you need to use a notebook away from a power source a G4's not the way to go. In PCville there are some low power-longlife options. I've always thought a tiny, specialized, super pro machine designed for basic apps and file capture with crazy life (12-16hrs per charge) could sell well for Apple. Sony own a chunk of this market right now and the new micro PC's (6 inches and under running XP) will upset things further. We need a real notebook chip for OSX. The G5's never going to be ideal in servers and laptops. We need another option.

Diatribe
Apr 28, 2004, 04:37 PM
My Rev C 17" (2GB,80@5400,128,4xDVD) is unopened in a box on the sofa beside my Girlfriend's Rev A 15" (768MB,Superdrive,80@4200,64,2xDVD). I'm writing this on my Rev A 17" (1GB,60@4200,64,2xDVD). I've never seen more than 2 hrs from the Rev A and expect the C to be similar. Battery life sucks and sockets are mandatory.

I see that my charge indicator starts with an optomistic lie (like 2hrs 43 mins) and then rapidly drops within 30 mins to something like 1 hr 45 mins. I continue to lose a little time from there.

Seriously though - if you need to use a notebook away from a power source a G4's not the way to go. In PCville there are some low power-longlife options. I've always thought a tiny, specialized, super pro machine designed for basic apps and file capture with crazy life (12-16hrs per charge) could sell well for Apple. Sony own a chunk of this market right now and the new micro PC's (6 inches and under running XP) will upset things further. We need a real notebook chip for OSX. The G5's never going to be ideal in servers and laptops. We need another option.

The G4 isn't the problem... the new one is actually pretty good. The 12" gets close to 5 hrs. as some people report.
And regarding your comment about the G5... AFAIK IBM is developing a laptop version of the G5 with a lot less heat output, better scalability, etc.
So maybe we'll see those for the Rev. B G5 pbs or for the Rev. As if they cannot get the big ones working. But I thought that IBM said something about mid next year for those processors. Take it for what it's worth.

Abstract
Apr 30, 2004, 12:26 AM
Also, keep in mind that compared to the cost of the laptop, another battery is pocket change.

That's probably the worst advice ever. Heck, its not even advice. ;)


"Another battery is an option, but 3 batteries would be great, and 4 batteries would give you amazing use on airplanes!!" :eek:

BrandonRP0123
Apr 30, 2004, 01:23 AM
Im surprised that somebody hasn't called Apple on the Battery issue regarding advertising, real world usage is nowhere near 4.5-5 hrs. Could this be called false advertising.

Not quite.

I frequently get over 4 hours on my 12" Powerbook (867). When its not connected to any network (read: airport off, ethernet unplugged, modem not connected) and not pounding on the CPU (using Terminal, mainly), I've gotten 5 hours and 20 minutes using a stop watch measuring it all the way through.

If you let it sit disconnected like that and the screen turns off, I bet it'll do 7-8 hours.

When I had my old iBook 500 (when it was brand new) I watched two movies back to back with it on an airplane (terminator 2 was one of them, which is over 2 hours). It went to reserve battery power and then to sleep during the ending credits of the second movie.

niar
Apr 30, 2004, 03:18 AM
here is statistics from Year ago with my brand new TiBook - Dislpay brightness set to medium
6.5 - 7.5 Hrs: iTunes only (mp3, not AAC)
3 Hrs: Safari (with Airport)
2.5-3 Hrs: DivX/Mplayer
below 1.5 Hrs: Illustrator, Photoshop (mouse present)

Considering memory, processor and HD speed differences, I estimate that battery life of the new Powerbooks should be 2/3 of what TiBooks had.

toughboy
Apr 30, 2004, 03:20 AM
So I guess the bottom line is check your energy saver settings and keep use of the optical drive down if it's going to be a while before you can get to a power outlet.


I agree.. the optical drive changes the matter at most.. I never leave a dvd or a cd at the drive when I dont use it.. My 12"Pb rev.b works loooong "longtemps" when its in the energy saving mode and with no cds

aswitcher
Apr 30, 2004, 03:21 AM
I really want to know what I can expect of my 17" doing just word processing...

mms
May 1, 2004, 10:46 PM
The LCD eats up a lot of power, especially being so big. Besides, it's really really bright. Bring it down to about half the brightness and it's still perfectly usable, and you just gained a lot in battery power. Turn off BlueTooth and AirPort when you don't need it.

aswitcher
May 1, 2004, 11:12 PM
The LCD eats up a lot of power, especially being so big. Besides, it's really really bright. Bring it down to about half the brightness and it's still perfectly usable, and you just gained a lot in battery power. Turn off BlueTooth and AirPort when you don't need it.


I was also thinking of inverting the screen colours, typing blue/white onto a black background, to see if that helps conserve power? Anyone know?