Any problems with running a MB without the battery?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Milk*is*tasty, Feb 13, 2008.

  1. Milk*is*tasty macrumors member

    Dec 1, 2007
    I'm probably not gonna move my MB all that much (at least not this semester), gonna use it for recording sound (therefore needing a quiet computer), and I was wondering what the drawbacks are when not using a battery. I've heard all sorts of things, but they all seem to be related to the fact that the power can somehow turn off in the middle of something - yeah, but that's the same with pretty much any computer, so that's not really the best argument.

    I also hear the CPU underclocks by a few hundred MHz, and that's not a hassle either. As long as it functions as it should otherwise. No point in having the battery in as long as it's not in use 90% of the time, and it works peachy without. In addition, I would imagine it runs cooler because of the underclock and the lack of battery making heat. This is nice, as I want to turn the fans down to bare minimum (buying 4GB RAM and a better HDD as well, that brings down the temp a few degrees as well).

    So, is there any real concerns with running it without the battery, and if there is, with it being plugged in while using the battery, what kind of strain is there on the battery (been hearing all sorts of things about the battery life of MB's - not positive any of them really)?
  2. Eraserhead macrumors G4


    Nov 3, 2005
    Don't move it around as the battery adds stability to the machine, also it'll help keep dirt out of the inside of the computer. To be honest I can't see the disadvantage with leaving it in.
  3. Milk*is*tasty thread starter macrumors member

    Dec 1, 2007
    I just listed a few...

    So, there'll be sort of a «hole» in the MB, i.e. no cover for the battery? I'm confused.
  4. Eraserhead macrumors G4


    Nov 3, 2005
  5. airjuggernaut macrumors 6502a

    Oct 16, 2007
  6. kyleaa macrumors regular

    Jun 20, 2006
    Have you used a computer with a MagSafe before? It comes disconnected VERY easily, I don't think the argument that it can come unplugged and shut down is the same as it would be with any other machine.

    The MBP should run exactly the same with a fully charged battery in it as it does without the battery in. While it may underclock while USING the battery, it should not do the same when plugged in.
  7. philgilder macrumors 68000

    Sep 30, 2007
    most people report it underclocks when the battery is removed and only magsafe is powering the mbp
    doesnt make sense really...
  8. rezonat0r macrumors 6502

    Nov 2, 2007
    There's no problem leaving the battery in, and no problem taking it out either.
    The CPU does not throttle down just because the battery is physically installed.

    Think of the battery as a free UPS. Any kind of power outage, ESPECIALLY a brownout, is potentially damaging to the components. Personally I would leave it in and not worry about it.
  9. ashjamben macrumors 6502a

    Oct 28, 2007
    Shanghai, China
    i see no advantage of taking the battery out at all. If the battery is above 90% then it is bypassed anyway, taking it out wouldn't make any difference.

    by the way, i use my mac for recording too. as long as i'm not running any other apps whilst using logic i don't get any loud fan sounds.
  10. me_94501 macrumors 65816


    Jan 6, 2003
    Leave it in. It won't hurt anything as long as you use it periodically (see for more info), and the MagSafe comes unplugged readily. There's nothing worse than losing work because you accidentally unplugged your power adapter.
  11. tremendous macrumors 6502


    Jan 16, 2008
    UK? Yeah I'm OK. Stop asking.
    This would be completely pointless. Enjoy losing all your work and killing logic because it powers down randomly when you pull out the psu.
  12. Cloudsurfer macrumors 65816


    Apr 12, 2007
    I can't reccomend leaving the battery out. It's designed to be in there.
  13. Tosser macrumors 68030

    Jan 15, 2008
    The upside with leaving it out, is that the battery won't get busted from being charged 100 percent the whole time. You don't want the battery to do that. So if you intend to have it (the magsafe) plugged in the whole time, you will need to cycle the battery once in a while.

    P.S. I can already hear people exclaiming "that's not true, Li-ion does not have memory". And on the surface they don't. But if you dig a little deeper, it is true that Li-ion as such doesn't have it, but the moment you introduce a circuitry to measure the state of the battery, you have in effect just added "battery memory".
  14. Mal macrumors 603


    Jan 6, 2002
    So you unplug it once in a while even if you don't leave your desk, instead of taking the battery out. Taking out the battery as the OP suggested only opens you up to problems while not solving anything (because leaving the battery unattached would be worse than allowing it to remain in the machine).

  15. Tosser macrumors 68030

    Jan 15, 2008
    It's not just a matter of unplugging. You have to run the battery down once in a while. All the way. Cycle it a few times too. Unless you want to buy another battery after a very short while.

    However, your statement that it's worse leaving the battery on the table has no bearing on reality. A lithium will do well just sitting there on the table, after having been charged to around 40-50 percent. That's how you put such things up for storage. Ever wondered why iPods, laptops and other li-ion driven things come with just around that charge? That's because that's how you take best care of an unused battery.

    – most of the wiki is spot on. Just a few non-essential details is a little off.

    But you're absolutely right, he should think of the battery as a UPS. Otherwise you'll quickly screw it up for yourself when that magsafe becomes dislodged.
  16. bclayton88 macrumors newbie

    Jan 31, 2008
    I don't know with the macbook but with the macbook pro apple strongly recommends that you leave the battery in. The processor will actually slow down so that your computer doesn't try to use more power than the magsafe can provide as explained here straight from apple support:

    If the battery is removed from a MacBook or MacBook Pro, the computer will automatically reduce the processor speed. This prevents the computer from shutting down if it demands more power than the A/C adaptor alone can provide.
    Additional information

    Important: It is strongly recommended that you do not use your MacBook or MacBook Pro while the battery is removed. Accidently bumping the A/C adaptor could disconnect power and shutdown the computer. Any information that was not saved on your computer would be lost.
  17. heatmiser macrumors 68020

    Dec 6, 2007
    As others have said, you're just crippling your processor when you take out the battery without significantly increasing the lifespan of the battery. Either it dies in your computer or it dies on your desk; your choice. I'd choose the option that didn't reduce my 2ghz laptop to a 1ghz desktop.
  18. Tosser macrumors 68030

    Jan 15, 2008
    Just to be clear: You can destroy your battery in as little as three months if it's sitting fully charged in you laptop. Whereas you can have it put in your closet, or even better: In your fridge, and it will last for a very long time - only degrading "the natural" percentage.

    But just use the damn battery. I can't see any purpose in having the computer not use the battery at all. If so, you could use a mac mini instead.
  19. creator2456 macrumors 68000


    Jul 10, 2007
    I figure I will state what I think on this.

    1. The processor will only run at 1GHz with magsafe onle as opposed to 2.xxGHZ magsafe + battery/only battery.

    2. You are opening up the bottom of the computer to dust even if you think there is none to get in there.

    3. Any fluctuation in the power supply will cause a) power loss or b) damage to some extent

    4. The magsafe is designed to disconnect easily, why take the chance of losing all that data?

    5. I used my MBP as a desktop for the 1st year of its life with the battery in and fully charged with roughly 5 load-cycles. I actually gained mAh capacity in that time.

    6. In the last 2.5 months I have gone through 60 load-cycles and have only lost a total of 150mAh of capacity. My capacity is 6050mAh while Apple states my original capacity as 5500mAh, so I think the battery has seen no ill effects of long idle time or heavy usage.
  20. Tosser macrumors 68030

    Jan 15, 2008
    You didn't gain anything (See below). Consider yourself lucky, even if I seriously doubt what you're saying is 100 percent.

    That's not proof of anything. Heck, my battery which has 321 cycles on it, still have 5587mAh left on it. And it's at 88 percent health. The true mAh is somewhat screwed up on these things. Apparantly Apple goes by number of cells in them, and when they by production gain a little more oomph, the nominal value isn't upped.

    The reason I doubt your claim is that you have in effect beaten the crap out of a battery that by all who is working with these things say will harm the battery permanently. Yet you magically claim to have gained extra mAh than what the battery originally could hold. Excellent! I guess that's why apple too want you to once in a while drain it completely, even if you use it normally.

    Haha, sorry, I just can't help but think how ridiculous it is to actually claim that by having a battery connected to a charger constantly will up the amperage. If that was the case – that one could somehow magically do that - we would have laptops with 20 hours usage from a single RCRV-3 battery by now. :rolleyes:

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