New 15" PB Battery Concerns and Accessories Questions

Discussion in 'Macintosh Computers' started by Jr.HighTeacher, Sep 21, 2003.

  1. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2003
    Location:
    Burbank, CA
    #1
    I just purchased the new 15'' PB w/ Superdrive, backlit keyboard, 1.25 Ghz, 512 RAM, etc. on Friday afternoon and have a few questions for anyone who might have answers.

    After having run the battery down to "10%" remaining juice yesterday, I plugged in the laptop and let it fully recharge. _When I saw that the battery had been charged, I removed the charger, turned on the PB, and found that with a 100% charge the estimated battery life was only around 2.5 hours. _I quickly went to Energy Saver to set everything to optimal battery life settings, but I still haven't been able to get the battery to get anywhere close to the advertised "4.5 hours." _I read the "Mac Help" section on how to prolong battery life, and I did everything that was recommended. _I would think that I could get at least 4 hours on a brand new battery. _So, what is the deal? _What am I not taking into account? _Is anybody else encountering this with their new 15'' PB?

    My second question is about accessories. _Since this 15'' PB runs pretty hot (I found that out when I had it sitting on my lap for several minutes) I would like to get an accessory that will allow me to operate the PB cooler and more comfortably, but securely. _Which product do you recommend?

    Also, what other accessories would someone recommend to a "new" laptop user. _This is my first laptop, so I don't know what I will encounter along the way. _I have already purchased an iGO Juice auto/air/AC adapter and a Timbuk2 carry bag.

    I would appreciate any useful advice and constructive feedback. Thanks!
     
  2. macrumors 65816

    G5orbust

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2002
    #2
    well, your first step would be to turn off airport and bluetooth. Those zap battery pretty quickly.
     
  3. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2003
    Location:
    Burbank, CA
    #3
    Yes. I understand this to be the case. As I stated earlier, I followed all the recommended settings in the "Mac Help" about prolonging battery life. This included turning off Bluetooth, Airport, reducing brightness on both the screen and keyboard, and reducing the processor speed.

    Despite doing all these things, by just simply turning on the 15" and not doing a thing with it, the battery is still estimating to run at only 2.5 hours...hence my earlier question.

    So, I'd appreciate any useful advice and constructive feedback from anyone who may be able to help with respect to either the battery or accessories issue. Thanks!
     
  4. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2002
    Location:
    Oakland, California
    #4
    Did you run the PB until it went to sleep then charge it, because that is what you are supposed to do the first couple of times to properly calibrate your battery for maximum life? I saw that you ran it down to 10% but I think you should let it run completely down then charge it, at least that was the rule for tibooks. Good luck -RAM
     
  5. macrumors 68000

    crees!

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2003
    Location:
    MD/VA/DC
    #5
    Re: New 15" PB Battery Concerns and Accessories Questions

    Hot, really? I've heard nothing but praise as these new 15" PB's are supposedly very, very cool.
     
  6. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2003
    Location:
    Burbank, CA
    #6
    Okay. I'll run the battery down all the way this time as you suggested. I hope that does the trick.

    Still, if anyone else has any ideas, please let me know.

    And yes...it did run hot on my lap yesterday. I was wearing Dockers pants and felt the heat penetrating down to my skin. In fact, my thighs were red and clammy as though they were being slowly baked. ;-)

    I'm not too concerned about the heat issue, since I know that it's a fast processor crammed into a laptop. I just want to know what "cooling" accessory is recommended for this PB, and what other accessories are a good idea to get.

    Thanks!
     
  7. macrumors 6502a

    JSRockit

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2002
    Location:
    NYC
    #7
    I have heard of some getting the 4.5 hours of battery life and others getting 2.5 hours. Don't know who to believe.
     
  8. macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2002
    Location:
    Location Location
    #8
    Wow!! With that type of battery life, you would have been better off getting a Dell. ;) Maybe you can call Apple and beg for a new battery since it seems like you got a lemon. Two and a half hours is unacceptable, especially when considering the price you paid for it.
     
  9. macrumors 6502a

    JSRockit

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2002
    Location:
    NYC
    #9
    My 12" pBook gets 3 hours of battery life...and that is considered normal.
     
  10. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2002
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    #10
    Just FYI, Panther improves battery life A LOT. My iBook was getting about 1.5hrs on a full charge before Panther, and is now doing about 2:40. A big improvement. So, I'd imagine that Jaguar's battery issues are temporary.
     
  11. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2003
    Location:
    LA
    #11
    1.25 15"

    I too am getting about 2.5 hours. it is my only complaint so far. It is a little warm under heavy usage, but no more than most labtops I have used.

    I am going to try running my battery down again today, but I don't know if it will help.
     
  12. macrumors 6502a

    JSRockit

    Joined:
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    Location:
    NYC
    #12
    Which iBook is getting that horrible battery life? An IceBook should get no less than 3.5 hours.
     
  13. macrumors G3

    QCassidy352

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2003
    Location:
    San Francisco
    #13
    I had a 12" ibook that got under 3 hours (under 2 hours watching a dvd) and Apple said that was "acceptable." My current 14" ibook can get over 3 hours watching dvds and over 4 hours with "normal" use.

    So my point is just that battery life is never as advertised (though I am quite satisfied with the 14" battery life).
     
  14. macrumors 6502a

    JSRockit

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2002
    Location:
    NYC
    #14
    Yes, never as advertised, but the iBook is advertised at 5 hours. The iBook, with screen dimmed down and on settings for best battery should get more than 3.5 hours if my 12" pBook can get 3 hours. The G4 consumes more power than a G3 and the screens are the same.
     
  15. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2003
    Location:
    Burbank, CA
    #15
    Okay...so the battery isn't that great.

    I drained down the battery all the way until the PB went to sleep, recharged the battery to 100%, and still just a few minutes past 2.5 hours or "calculated" use time. So, the 15" is a huge drain on the battery. I got that.

    However, I am still hoping to get some advice about a "cooling" accessory and any other recommended accessories that would make my experience of owning and using the PB more enjoyable and less troublesome.

    Thanks.
     
  16. macrumors 68000

    crees!

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2003
    Location:
    MD/VA/DC
    #16
    Just received this in an email:

    Here is another document where Apple talks about the different battery technologies that it has used, and the best practices for recharging. Even for Lith-Ion, they recommend to fully discharge before charging.

    http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?artnum=10970
     
  17. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2003
    Location:
    Burbank, CA
    #17
    This is interesting!

    Okay, can someone explain to me what just happened with my 15" PB?

    I had turned it on about an hour ago after having fully charged the battery. _At that time, the battery calculation said 2:33 of useful time. _I then closed the lid and put the PB to sleep. _A moment ago, I raised the lid up and the PB awakened. _It recalculated the battery time, only THIS time is actually said (and I couldn't believe my eyes) 3 hours!

    Then, maybe after a few seconds, it dropped instantly to 2:45, which is still better than the 2:30 that I have gotten ever since yesterday.

    Out of curiosity, I closed the laptop again and put it to sleep. _After a few minutes, I opened it again only to have it recalculate back to 3:04 at 97% battery charge, which then drops to 2:48 after a few seconds. To make matters worse, I opened a simple spreadsheet program that I use to enter my student's grades, and the time plummeted back down to 2:33. _So, I'm wondering if someone can explain any of this to me. _Why the sudden fluctuations in time only after seconds, not minutes?

    Ideas anyone? :(
     
  18. macrumors 68030

    crazzyeddie

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2002
    Location:
    Florida, USA
    #18
    With my 15" Titanium, I find that i get more than the "calculated" battery life. Basically, the less stuff you do, the longer the battery lasts. This includes turning off your screen saver. Apps that use constant CPU power, like iTunes, will decrease the life alot. Sometimes, why my calculated time is 1:30, i get more like 2:45 of actual run time.
     
  19. macrumors 68000

    crees!

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2003
    Location:
    MD/VA/DC
    #19
    Re: This is interesting!

    Sounds like a "real-time" calculation of the battery life depending on which programs you are currently running and what you are currently doing. Hence a 3 hour battery life would be longer while sleeping than when you would be playing a video game. Sounds... intelligent. ;)
     
  20. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2003
    Location:
    Burbank, CA
    #20
    Yes, it does.

    :)
    I realize that running a program will reduce the time, but a spreadsheet program will knock off 20-30 minutes?!

    Heaven forbid I should want to play a DVD movie while away from any power source.

    It's just a drag, that's all. :(

    I'll just have to get used to the idea of plugging it in wherever I go, and at least that way I can enjoy the features that this PB offers without worrying whether the battery is going to die on me or not.
     
  21. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2003
    #21
    How many rpm does the HD you got have? I'm pretty sure that a higher RPM could put a little added strain on battery life...
     
  22. macrumors 68000

    crees!

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2003
    Location:
    MD/VA/DC
    #22
    I upgraded to the 5400 rpm drive myself... but if you think about it.. eventhough it is a faster drive and might need more power.. it's not running as long as a 4200 rpm drive because it writes the data faster. My guess is that battery life would have little difference between those 2 drives.
     
  23. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2003
    Location:
    Burbank, CA
    #23
    HD RPM's??? I don't know how to check for that.

    When I run Apple System Profiler, it just tells me what kind of a hard drive I have and how large it is.

    It is a Fujitsu MHT2080AT 80 GB drive
    Device Revision 8162

    How can I find out what RPM's it runs at?
     
  24. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2003
    Location:
    Burbank, CA
    #24
    I didn't upgrade anything, so......

    I guess my drive runs at 4200 RPM.
     
  25. macrumors 68000

    crees!

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2003
    Location:
    MD/VA/DC
    #25
    Re: I didn't upgrade anything, so......

    You're correct. If you didn't upgrade the harddrive then it would be at 4200rpms. Were there any other questions you might have?
     

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