21 day old MBP i5 - woeful battery life, being returned to shop

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by nelson2010, May 10, 2010.

  1. nelson2010 macrumors newbie

    May 10, 2010
    Received new MacBook Pro 15" i5 on 18th April from John Lewis. Cannot get this laptop battery to last longer than 4 hours doing light HTML web browsing in Safari, WLAN on, BlueT off, no flash, no other processes running (checked Activity Monitor). Very disappointed. Battery calibrated once laptop received, healthy use of battery during its 21 day life (no over charging or letting it die). Phoned Apple support, first tech sympathised and got me to reset PRAM and told me to re-calibrate the battery - didnt make a difference, second tech guy using same support call reference told me to return the laptop.

    Laptop going back to John Lewis this week for refund or replacement (cant make my mind up yet).

    Truly believe this is a manufacturing fault, as do 2 of the Apple Tech guys I spoke to on the phone from Apple support.

    Am 7 days over the 14 days return period with Apple.com, luckily John Lewis have a 28 day return as they are a retail shop and will accept it.

    What a saga for a £1500 laptop.

    [edit] Also kept an eye on which GPU was being used - made sure Intel was being used during the period of testing and nVidia was not running.
    [edit2] Display brightness was at 50% and backlit keyboard was off.
  2. ozreth macrumors 65816


    Nov 5, 2009
    Same exact experience here. On my third i7.
  3. amoergosum macrumors 6502

    Oct 20, 2008

  4. ozreth macrumors 65816


    Nov 5, 2009
    Meaning I've exchanged twice. This is the third one I've tried and am still getting half the advertised battery life. I was expecing at least 6 or 7 hours.
  5. nelson2010 thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 10, 2010
  6. moel macrumors 6502

    Nov 7, 2007
    You will never ever get the advertised battery life.

    IF you are lucky, doing what you are doing I note that you HAVEN'T mentioned about turning display brightness down to around minimum, and turning off the back lit keyboard.

    BOTH of these suck huge amounts of power.

    If you were on full brightness, it wouldn't surprise me that it wasn't lasting more than 4 hours.
  7. nelson2010 thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 10, 2010
    Display brightness was of course 50% and backlit keyboard was off naturally. Sorry should have said that - have edited post.
  8. diamond.g macrumors 603


    Mar 20, 2007
    Is that what the battery life remaining indicator tells you or is that how long till it actually shuts down on you?

    I find that my computer and my iPhone last a whole lot longer if I do not look at the remaining battery life (percentage or time).
  9. iBunny macrumors 65816

    Apr 15, 2004
    lol 4 hours is good battery life IMO.

    I cant get that now with both of my older MBPs lol
  10. polsander macrumors newbie

    Apr 20, 2010
    Edinburgh, UK
    same experience, but i'm over 21 days from the purchase (bought online)...what can i do? also, can you please give me the number of apple support?
  11. johnnymg macrumors 65816


    Nov 16, 2008
    If you have to return this second replacement PLEASE buy another brand computer. Either your expectations are too high or you're VERY unlucky. In either case there should be a limit to how many times a customer can return products.
  12. rywat macrumors member

    Apr 5, 2008
    who is john lewis, and why is he selling you faulty products
  13. ExcelonGT macrumors regular

    Feb 9, 2008
    ive had my mbp15 i7 for a week now and have never seen more than 4 hours battery life. but then again, because I have such a powerful computer now, I am using it heavily. Seems like I am almost always using the nvidia GPU and have a Win7 VM running in parallels. That being said... ~4hrs battery life seems more than acceptable to me.
  14. ECUpirate44 macrumors 603


    Mar 22, 2010
    turn your screen and backlit keyboard off and just let the laptop sit there. I bet you will get your 7 hours. IMO 3.5-4 hours of battery is fine. You will never get the reported battery life
  15. rawd macrumors regular

    Aug 20, 2008
  16. nelson2010 thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 10, 2010
    4 hours is the actual time is shuts down on me after light web browsing.

    John Lewis are a very large Apple reseller here in the UK who graciously give 28 days to return in comparison to Apple Stores or apple.com who only give 14 days.
  17. scaredpoet macrumors 604


    Apr 6, 2007
    So return it, and if you get a new one, see if the battery life improves.
  18. sukanas macrumors 6502a


    Nov 15, 2007
    when i got my first gen unibody mbp, they advertised it as 4hours of battery life.. i get 2.5 hours... turns out everyone else had same battery life. those who say they get a lot, just want to feel good and post it on the web. its unrealistic. go to an apple store and unplug an i5, itll also say 4 hours too.
  19. aneks macrumors regular

    Aug 29, 2006
    my battery life is fairly poor. but there is no point returning it. this is what the models do. you want more battery get a less powerful machine. the 13 has a better battery life. there is no way in hell they every got 7-8 hours out of a 15 inch MBP. Just claibrate the battery and be happy/.
  20. js81 macrumors 65816


    Dec 31, 2008
    I actually get pretty close on my 13" MBP - I regularly get around 8-9 hours of regular Web usage (not avoiding flash, etc.). I have gotten 10 hours before, but you have to be VERY gentle. I'm actually quite impressed with the battery life in my 13" - guess I'm glad that I got the C2D instead of the i5, lol. :D
  21. Pax macrumors 6502a

    Dec 12, 2003

    Apple is normally very careful with its statements about this. Certainly my 13" 2009 MBP can meet or exceed its stated 7 hour life, if I use it as they say on the Web page (half brightness, light use etc etc). The evidence from previous models on this forum shows that pretty much all the other models (MBA, MB etc) meet or exceed what Apple says.

    Anandtech got 8 hours out of a Core i5 in light use, compared to 8-9 hours on the Apple website, so it seems a real number.

    You guys all ought to be able to match it - I don't understand why
  22. Pax macrumors 6502a

    Dec 12, 2003
    What are you guys seeing as battery current when your i5/i7 is idle?

    Put display to 50% brightness, close all apps
    Unplug Magsafe
    Open System Profiler & navigate to the Power page
    Look at the Amperage figure
    Watch it for a couple of minutes, pressing ctrl-R every now and then to refresh
    What's the average figure?

    For my 13" C2D the idle figure is about -740 mA. That ties in perfectly with the advertised 7 hour battery life (740 mA * 7 hours = 5180 mAhr, about the capacity of the battery)

    You guys with 4 hours battery, what is your idle Amperage figure?
  23. chris8535 macrumors member

    May 10, 2010
    My new UMBP 15" gets about 1.5 hours of battery life with its first cycle. It pretty much blows.
  24. Pax macrumors 6502a

    Dec 12, 2003
    Spotlight might be indexing the drive, that uses a lot of juice. Activity Monitor should show 85-95% idle when it's truly doing nothing.

    What's your Amperage figure when on battery?
  25. Passenger88 macrumors member


    Jan 26, 2010
    The Netherlands
    I am also not really satisfied with the battery life of my new MCB. After calibrating it seems a bit more longer, but I used flash alot so that might be the problem. I already put bluetooth off, backlit off and brightness under %50.

    I just live with it :)

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