Battery Life Tests for MacBook Air 2012 Model

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by ryan101, Dec 10, 2012.

  1. ryan101 macrumors member

    Jul 26, 2012
    I have a MacBook Air A1465 bought it Sep 2012 ish. It has an i7 processor with 8GB RAM. As far as I know the published batterry life is 5 hours. However, I find the battery apalling. The work I do is standard stuff like replying to emails using Outlook, using Dreamweaver a little bit, using applications like MS Word, browsing internet for research and so on. I reckon, I probably get 1.5 hours time on full charge!

    I cannot understand this. I initially thought maybe it's me. I am doing something that is really resource hungry or power hungry. Today I thought I must get to bottom of this as this machine cost me a lot of money and I should get what I paid for. Anyway, I thought the first test would be to watch a movie or something streaming it from something like BBC iPlayer, and do absolutely nothing else. Not even touch the laptop for the odd typing. Now I haven't finished yet, but I started at 4.30pm with 100% battery life, and now it's 6.52, so let's say it's 7pm, and that's 2.5 hours and I am on 34% left. I don't have enough time to finish the rest of the test as I have to go home. But, I reckon, based on so far I may get another hour at the max. So that's 3.5 hours. That's still nothing close to the 5 hours that is published.

    Can anyone help or offer advise or pointers. I have a feeling a lot people are going to say what I am already suspecting. It's my i7 processor that's eating into my battery life. Anyway, all advise, opinions, suggestions, welcome. If i don't get descent battery life, is it something I can go and get looked at under warranty???
  2. Jaypi macrumors regular


    Nov 10, 2012
    Los Angeles
  3. ryan101 thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 26, 2012
    I will try that. Anyone has else has any other suggestions?
  4. ryan101 thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 26, 2012
    Hi, I installed and checked the stats, and it does charge. There is only 1 or 2 percent difference between what the MacBook says and what Cocunut Battery says.
  5. iTundra macrumors member


    Oct 12, 2011
    I'm having a similar problem. My 11" MBA (i7 / 8Gb / 256Gb) is 26 weeks old. I was getting about 5hrs and over the past two or three weeks it's been dropping rapidly and now I get about 1.5 hrs. This all word processing and email (when I dare turn WiFi back on). Turning WiFi off the entire time on battery gets me about another 20 minutes.

    Coconut indicates power usage of about 8.5 - 11 watts w/ no WiFi, 94% of capacity available (4410 of 4680mAh), 44 loadcycles.

  6. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    There are many factors that impact your battery life. See the BATTERY LIFE FROM A CHARGE section of the following link for details, including tips on how to maximize your battery life.

    The link below should answer most, if not all, of your battery/charging questions. If you haven't already done so, I highly recommend you take the time to read it.
  7. ryan101 thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 26, 2012
    Thanks to all who have replied. It is appreciated. I figured it out myself by setting up various tests and scenarios. It seems the battery is OK. For whatever reason, when I am using MS Outlook it becomes very resource hungry. I have several mailboxes connected to MS Exchange. I believe it is probably because they are connecting all the time, I assume doing send and receive updates probably quite frequently. Anyway, that's what I have pin pointed it towards.

    I did phone Apple support, to see if they would help me under warranty, as my MacBook is about 4 months old. I spoke to a tech over the phone. He was not that helpful. He told me what I already knew, that the battery was fine. And he avoided giving me straight answers. Anyway, I find call centers with big companies frustrating, with all companies, full stop.
  8. iTundra macrumors member


    Oct 12, 2011
    Thanks GGJ, good info.

    I do pretty much the exact same thing every day. I go to a cafe and write for a few hours with a really good cappuccino by my side, go home after lunch, plug-in until the next morning, repeat. My usage at the cafe is pretty consistent about 80% pages, 5% safari, 10% excel, 5% email (eudora/win7/vmware).

    For the first 18 - 20 weeks I could easily go 4 or 5 hours on a charge, with WiFi turned on and display at full. Now I get about 1:25 with that or just a bit over 2 hrs with WiFi off and display down 5 bars from full. Unless I've done something that I'm unaware of, the battery has declined considerably more than Coconut indicates and than Apple implies it should. As best I can tell though, nothing on my MBA nor my usage has changed (other than now turning off WiFi and turning down the display).

    I can get this kind of performance for $250 in the Windows world, not what I expected for over $1k from Apple.
  9. cedwhatev macrumors 6502


    Oct 22, 2011
    Could be a number of things..

    - Bluetooth on or off?
    - Screen brightness
    - What browser are you using? (Safari uses the least amount of battery)
    - Flash turned on or off on your browser?
    - Power Nap on or off?

    All of these things were a factor for me at one point, and now I can easily get around 5hrs with WiFi on.
  10. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    Did you read the 3rd bullet point in the BATTERY LIFE FROM A CHARGE section of the FAQ?
  11. Amad3U5 macrumors member

    Nov 17, 2012
    3.5 hours?! I have a 2012 model with 4GB of RAM and an i5, and I get a good 8 hours when web browsing, and over 10 hours when word-processing/coding. It may partly be due to the fact that you have more RAM and a higher end CPU, but it really shouldn't make that much of a difference.

    If I were you I would get a replacement.
  12. krravi macrumors 65816

    Nov 30, 2010
    The MBA that I just got gives me around 6 hours. Its been through 2 cycles of recharge so far.
    Just wireless on, no bluetooth with keyboard light on in the lowest setting.
  13. ryan101 thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 26, 2012
    @ iTundra, You can start doing some test of your own. It's often a process of elimination. I started of just leaving the laptop on and playing a film nothing else and to see how long it lasted. In the end I found it was while I was using Outlook and other things that it ate the most power.

    I have the 11inch model, which is advertised as 5 hours, and it lasts about 4.5 hours, for an i7 processor with 8GB, I can respect that.

    @krravi and @Amad3U5 , do you guys have the 13inch or bigger model or something, because the 11inch has a max of 5 hours!

    @Amad3U5, I am very surprised you get 8 hours, even the bigger MBA models are only advertised as max 7 hours, I think!

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