battery life not what I expected

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by rayjay86, Sep 1, 2011.

  1. rayjay86 macrumors 6502

    May 15, 2011
    Is anyone actually getting 7hrs of real-time battery life out of their Air?

    I have the i5 MBA13 and my battery meter tells me to expect 4.5 hours out of it. I've never actually timed it but it can't be seven hours. My computer is on almost all the time at work and I'm there longer than 7hrs and I have to recharge it before I leave.

    I'm not encoding video, Skype chatting or anything. My email is on and MS Office is open. I'm browsing the internet but just reading, no YouTube or other flash videos.

    Any idea? I let the OS take over the whole brightness of the monitor and everything as well. Its usually at medium brightness.
  2. aristobrat macrumors G5

    Oct 14, 2005
    I'm not sure if you've seen it, but here is how Apple did their Air battery test. I'm not saying it's worth it, but others have uninstalled Flash completely and gotten slightly better battery life, as most popular websites have some element of Flash on them, from menus to advertisements.
  3. rayjay86 thread starter macrumors 6502

    May 15, 2011
    that's weird. So I have to disable Flash to get the advertised battery life?

    Seems like a pretty shady marketing scheme if you ask me...tons of websites use Flash.
  4. aristobrat macrumors G5

    Oct 14, 2005
    I agree, it sucks. Instead of uninstalling Flash, I use the Safari "click2flash" extension. It replaces Flash content with a gray window that says "flash", which you can click, if you really want to see the flash content.
  5. PAC88 macrumors 6502

    Apr 23, 2009
    I get a solid 7+ hrs pretty consistently on the 2010 13" air. I don't even have flash installed on my air. I just use Chrome when I need to watch a video or something.. for everything else, I just use Firefox. On a full charge, just casual browsing one tab and not doing much, the meter stays between 7-9.5 hrs for me.
    If I'm just typing or reading in word, it's about the same or more.

    I don't keep a lot of tabs open. Usually have my brightness level all the way down to one bar which is enough for most casual use. Also make sure your bluetooth is turned off. I also noticed that using a lot of gestures (scrolling) on the trackpad cuts my time down by about an hour.
  6. rayjay86 thread starter macrumors 6502

    May 15, 2011
    PAC88 I appreciate your reply but everything you mentioned is standard computing. Nothing fancy in there, you basically described what I do with my computer. I use Safari instead of Chrome/Firefox and I don't think I should have to switch browsers just to get something out of a browsing experience.

    Having the brightness set to the lowest settings will obviously save me battery life but that's not normal, I don't think apple expects people to browse or use their computers like that. If they do that's pathetic.

    Atrobrat, do you find that Click2Flash extension really does help? If it does I'll seriously consider it. I was drawn to the MBA for it's portability and ability to last so long on a single charge...I'm not so sure if that's something that is actually true though.
  7. aristobrat macrumors G5

    Oct 14, 2005
  8. treestar macrumors 6502

    Feb 28, 2010
    It helps immensely. Don't forget to close your Flash loaded tabs when you are done.
  9. rayjay86 thread starter macrumors 6502

    May 15, 2011
    I couldn't get the Click2Flash plugin to install. I downloaded it from the website and when I installed it and it said "installation complete" but then nothing showed up in Safari. I think the plugin doesn't work in Safari 5.

    I downloaded another plugin called "ClickToPlugin" which I *think* does the same thing.

    When I go to some websites that I know have embedded players etc, there is just a grey "FLASH" box above it.

    What about YouTube? When I go to YouTube it plays normally (unless I'm missing something)? Or is it automatically forcing YouTube to play in HTML5
  10. MultiFinder17 macrumors 68000


    Jan 8, 2008
    Tampa, Florida
    The browser isn't supposed to look any different - those grey Flash boxes indicate that ClickToFlash is working. Go to Preferences --> Extensions to make sure that it is there.
  11. PAC88, Sep 1, 2011
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2011
  12. aristobrat macrumors G5

    Oct 14, 2005
    In Safari, if you go up to the menu bar and click Safari > Safari Extensions..., you should see ClickToFlash on the main page, under "Most Popular". I've had way better luck obtaining extensions there vs. Googling around for them.

    And yes, with YouTube, it will play HTML5 when available.
  13. accessoriesguy macrumors 6502a

    Jul 8, 2011
    that's pretty cool, i should look into that :)

    the problem is that when they do their testing they just use word documenting and basic web browsing.

    So anything above that will of course eat out your battery life. You have to also remember that the weather can affect the battery life (heat no good) and how you use your case (leaving it on top of your blankets does not help it either).

    I have heard some people get the or more battery life here on these forums (although rare). i usually subtract 2 hours to get real world results, aka couple of programs, music, and visually appealing.

    What I do to extend the life substantially when in class is turn off the wifi, helps me focus and super charges that battery life...oh turning off bluetooth helps too, i have no blue tooth devices so im good. oh USB plugs and connections eat up power too!!!
  14. treestar macrumors 6502

    Feb 28, 2010
    Secondary-click in the Safari window to get to ClickToFlash Preferences.
  15. mixman macrumors member

    Aug 3, 2011
    About 3hrs on average on my 13" 2011 air. After a full charge the indicator shows 2:23 at 98%.
  16. trims macrumors regular

    May 11, 2011
    Nottingham, UK
    Getting 4+ hours on fairly robust 13" i7 use (but excluding Skype which sucks juice and seems to toast the processor).

    I find I'm getting a full work day use out of it because I'm not fired up the whole time. This machine is much quieter than the Tecra PC in meetings, slips into sleep mode and wakes up quickly.

    I guess it all depends on how you measure / assess useful battery life? . . .
  17. summitRun macrumors regular

    Aug 28, 2011
    I like this idea...I dont want to install Flash but could someone explain the difference between having flash/ctf versus using chrome only for flash? Does flash install when you install chrome or is it just an extension that allows viewing of flash material. Obviously I'm a little confused:eek:
  18. treestar macrumors 6502

    Feb 28, 2010
    Internet browsing sucks without Flash. I tried for about two weeks.
  19. PAC88 macrumors 6502

    Apr 23, 2009
    Chrome comes with a flash plugin which can be disabled. So, I guess it's not really any different than having ctf in Safari. I just find that it's easier to switch b/w 2 browsers instead of enabling/disabling flash every 30 minutes..

    Quote[treestar] "Internet browsing sucks without Flash. I tried for about two weeks."

    Depends what you do on the internet. For the sites I frequently visit, I can pretty much live without flash.. and the battery savings are worth it.
  20. treestar macrumors 6502

    Feb 28, 2010
    I use C2F fiercely, but when I tried to read a simple webcomic, the site's Flash based design made it impossible. I really wanted to read that comic so I installed Flash. Also, not all Taylor Swift videos I wanted to watch were H.264.
  21. JR1993 macrumors regular

    Jun 1, 2011
    I use click2flash

    Also, 13 MBA i7 here, I get MORE than 7 hours sometimes. I have mail open, surfing web in safari. Sometimes I have BBC radio 1 streaming through itunes. I also do click flash things to view. Maybe 2 youtube videos.

    Dont know how I manage it, seems unusual, but it certainly happens!
  22. summitRun macrumors regular

    Aug 28, 2011
    Appreciate the response. So if you do not install Flash but just have Chrome with the flash plug-in enabled you can watch all flash content as desired? Do I have that right?
  23. PAC88 macrumors 6502

    Apr 23, 2009
    that's correct. everything works on Chrome.
  24. bill-p macrumors 68000

    Jul 23, 2011
    Click2Flash has been replaced by Click2Plugin, which blocks more than just Flash.

    Both have the option to automatically replace Flash containers with HTML5 containers, thereby reducing load while you don't watch videos.

    While you watch videos, however, HTML5 or Flash doesn't make a difference, and Flash is actually more compatible at this time.

    I'd actually suggest that you install Adblock instead of Click2Flash or Click2Plugin. That'll boost battery life much more than Click2Flash while browsing the web, because now your computer doesn't have to keep working on those millions of ads that you see.
  25. Sunday Ironfoot macrumors regular

    Apr 14, 2011
    Honestly, I think setting the brightness to 50% has a much bigger impact on battery life than not having Flash. I think all this talk of blocking/removing Flash or installing a Click2Flash plugin is a bit of a red herring TBH.

    To the OP, what brightness did you set it to?

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