Brand new 11" - getting 3 hours of battery wtf?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by Sean Dempsey, Sep 24, 2011.

  1. macrumors 68000

    Sean Dempsey

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2006
    #1
    I just bought a 11" i7 quad with the 256 SSD, the highest end 11".

    I can get maybe 3 hours of battery out of this, just doing nothing but browsing the web.

    I do have the screen on two levels down from full brightness, and do have the keyboard lit. But I can't believe that 3-3.5 hours is even acceptable.

    I got on the computer at maybe 10am with a full charge from then night before. It's now 12:15 and I am at 22% battery. And that's not even with constant use, I've put it down for maybe 15-20 minutes.

    Maybe I should open it up and time it from 100% to 0% with no usage at all, just sitting there open.

    At what point to I take it in to the Apple store and explain it? How many hours of battery is just unacceptable.
     
  2. Guest

    eric/

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2011
    Location:
    Ohio, United States
    #2
    Wifi + your display brightness eat battery alive.
     
  3. macrumors 6502a

    adnoh

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2010
    #3
    Try the test with brightness @ 4 boxes and no keyboard backlight.
     
  4. macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2010
    #4
    If you just bought it yesterday, it is also probably still indexing your SSD. That eats up processor (and battery) power. Also, I think the battery measurements are made at 50% brightness, so if you have it at 80% that would drain it quicker. If you are on Wi-Fi, chances are you will get about 4 hours of battery once the indexing is done. Remember, it's only a 35Wh battery. Regular notebooks usually have about 60Wh.

    BTW, it's a dual-core i7. The hyperthreading makes it look like it has 4 cores.
     
  5. thread starter macrumors 68000

    Sean Dempsey

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2006
    #5
    I just left it open, no activity, while I was in the shower and it went from 14% to 9%.

    5% loss for 15 minutes of sitting idle?

    Also, it's not indexing. that was done in like the first hour of opening it. I have menumeters running and the CPU barley moves at all.
     
  6. macrumors 65816

    Adidas Addict

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2008
    Location:
    England
    #6
    They released a quad?
     
  7. macrumors regular

    Mrguidogenio

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2011
    Location:
    Argentina
    #7
    Was it sleeping? If not, was the Wifi turned on?
     
  8. thread starter macrumors 68000

    Sean Dempsey

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2006
    #8
    4 minutes since the last post. Dropped 2%.

    Something is wrong.

    ----------

    yeah I was mistaken it's a dual core, hyperthreaded.
     
  9. macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2010
    #9
    Have you tried exiting Safari? Safari is a known memory hog, and a wayward Flash operation has also been known to drain the battery.
     
  10. thread starter macrumors 68000

    Sean Dempsey

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2006
    #10
    No, it was left open.

    So with WiFi on and the screen above 50%, I should expect a 2.5 hour battery life? And this is their highly mobile computer?

    How can I test this so I can report it to the apple store for an exchange or return. This is ridiculous, my MBP 17" lasts longer. If I had known I'd be stuck to the wall charge, I could have just stuck with the 17".

    ----------

    I don't use safari. And I have Flashblock running in Firefox.
     
  11. macrumors 65816

    rhinosrcool

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2009
    Location:
    MN
    #11
    Unfortunately, as much as I liked the 11" air, the main reason I kept my 13" was battery life. Yes, you can do a combination of things to keep it going a while longer. However, even with light use, it is not going to last that long. Heck, even the 13" doesn't last that long; though, at least, it does last 4-5 hours.

    Since the airs are so thin, especially the 11", I don't see how Apple can make that great of strides in battery life. In the future, maybe someone can make a flat plate, like the bottom of the air, that could be plugged into the air?
    Maybe, even a case with a battery or power source built-in. Yes, it would take something away from the slick design, but it could be great to charge it while either traveling or when you need the extra juice.
     
  12. macrumors 603

    appleguy123

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2009
    Location:
    15 minutes in the future
    #12
    Apple doesn't license the MagSafe and sues when people try to make products for it. This could never legally happen.
    I normally get 6+ hours of school work doing(Pages+Safari) on my 13" MacBook Air.
     
  13. macrumors 65816

    Adidas Addict

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2008
    Location:
    England
    #13
    I got my 11" MBA a couple of weeks ago, using it for surfing wireless with the display a couple of notches above 50% I get between 4-4.5hrs which is about what I was expecting. Though mine is the i5/128GB/4GB model. Flash video, however kills the battery, though it has on all my previous Apple laptops.
     
  14. thread starter macrumors 68000

    Sean Dempsey

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2006
    #14
    Well I'm going to turn off the sleep/screensaver and just leave it open and idle and time it, maybe with a webpage open in firefox set to refresh every 5 minutes.

    I had hoped this would be the ultimate mobile device, but it wouldn't even last a decent car ride or flight. What is the point of having a 2 hour battery life if you have to do anything that requires a little CPU?

    God forbid I see what happens if I am using Photoshop while running on battery. 1 hour maybe?
     
  15. macrumors 6502a

    Paulywauly

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2009
    Location:
    Durham, UK
    #15
    Dude if you are concerned take it into an Apple Store, they can test battery etc. It's not unheard of to have a bad battery
     
  16. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2009
    #16
    It's not that accurate, stop looking at the percentage and stop worrying.

    Turn down the brightness and use it for a bit, and see how it goes after a few days. Don't obsess over the battery percentage or you've never be happy with it. Just make sure you measure a charge's life time properly - i.e. from full charge to off.
     
  17. macrumors 6502a

    NikFinn

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2009
    Location:
    MA
    #17
    I personally aren't surprised with the numbers you're getting, and am surprised to see you're complaining about them. But.

    If you do think something is wrong with your battery, download Coconut Battery and check the health and such and report back.
     
  18. macrumors 6502

    alecgold

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2007
    #18
    I had the 13" MBA 2010 and I could get over 9 hours on that.
    I would write in word, every now and then google a bit and have the brightness on 2 or 3 notches. No music, no other programs open, no istat menu or program from my scanner, just as basic as possible.
    Now I have the 11" MBA i7/4/256, just like you. At this moment I have bluetooth off, killed every app, just one safari window open, no widgets, no other stuff, three notches of light. That would get me an estimated 5,5 hours. (5,99 hours at 82% battery left). That is not that much, considering I have the brightness so low and nothing else going on, but it is way better than you are able to get.

    It's hard to say if it is a faulty unit. What you could try to do is shut as many programs down as you can and just let it stand for a while, playing some music. It might just be a rouge program that is just trashing memory, doing very short but high intense CPU tasks or what not. If it keeps on running down, I would try to find an apple store and have a genius take a look at it.

    There is one thing you might need to check, if you look at istat menu, the CPU indicator doesn't seem all that accurate to me.
     
  19. macrumors 65816

    rhinosrcool

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2009
    Location:
    MN
    #19
    The battery thing was just a wish.:) When I say that I get 4-5 hrs with my 13", that's using it my way. For sure, if I played with the settings, I could get 6 hrs. And, to be clear, I'm not complaining. Getting 4-5 hrs on a great mobile like my 13" air is pretty good. It's just that with such a reduction in both size and thickness, compromises have to be made.
     
  20. macrumors 68040

    ntrigue

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2007
    #20
    You certainly have a problem. Get to a Genius Bar and get a working model.

    That said, brightness radically affects these models. Everything is low power about the device except the screen.
     
  21. macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2010
    #21
    That doesn't sound normal. I had my 11" i7/256 model on a flight earlier this month. It was a Wi-Fi flight, and I had Windows 7 running in Parallels. In 45 minutes, it dropped from 90% to 60%, suggesting it would have lasted about 2.5 hours even in that extreme scenario. With Windows 7 off, I was getting about a 4 hour average.
     
  22. macrumors 6502

    3dflyboy1

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2011
    Location:
    California, USA
    #22
    As far as brightness, maybe try to get used to a lower setting. Pull it down a notch each day and soon you'll be used to a very low setting and longer battery life.
     
  23. thread starter macrumors 68000

    Sean Dempsey

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2006
    #23
    There's the Coconut screen, and then also the menumeters bar. I can see the network, ram, disk, and cpu usage all the time in the menubar. Nothing is pegging the CPU, it pretty much looks like it does in the screenshot, the 4 meters just bottomed out.

    I am using the brightness at 50%. I am not sure which part of the coconut meter is the health. it's only had 4 cycles.

    I'm going to have it looked at tomorrow probably.
     

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  24. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2011
    Location:
    Land of eternal Spring
    #24
    the health would be the current capacity vs design capacity, which shows to be 101%, but if it keeps draining that fast there's something wrong someplace else
     
  25. hfg
    macrumors 68030

    hfg

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2006
    Location:
    Cedar Rapids, IA. USA
    #25
    You need to cycle your battery a few times to reach full potential.

    You should also follow the instructions to calibrate your battery monitor.

    If after all that you discover your actual run time is abnormally low, take it in to the Apple store for analysis. It is possible to simply get a bad battery.
     

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