macbook external screen and battery

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by bogart, Apr 9, 2008.

  1. bogart macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2008
    #1
    on verge of buying a macbook black (or maybe a pro but probably not)

    two separate questions

    1. will a macbook drive the 20 inch cinema display ok ?

    2. should I get a spare macbook battery straight away and alternate them, as has worked well with my pc notebook that is now dying ?

    andy
     
  2. DoFoT9 macrumors P6

    DoFoT9

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2007
    Location:
    Singapore
    #2
    1. "Graphics and video support
    Intel GMA X3100 graphics processor with 144MB of DDR2 SDRAM shared with main memory3

    Extended desktop and video mirroring: Simultaneously supports full native resolution on the built-in display and up to 1920 by 1200 pixels on an external display, both at millions of colors"

    (taken directly from apples web site) 1920x1200 is the size of the 30" monitor, so clearly it can do the smaller 24" monitors quite easily.

    2. hhmm depends what your gonna be doing/if you have access to powerpoints if you need it. i would be inclined to say yes, because i am a "just incase" type of guy. but then you have to make sure its charged (its very hard to charge 2 batteries when u get home at 10 at night and have to get back up at 5), have it actually with you (im a forgetful person).

    so you know...
     
  3. bogart thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2008
    #3
    <graphics point snipped for brevity - but thanks>

    <QUOTE> 2. hhmm depends what your gonna be doing/if you have access to powerpoints if you need it. i would be inclined to say yes, because i am a "just incase" type of guy. but then you have to make sure its charged (its very hard to charge 2 batteries when u get home at 10 at night and have to get back up at 5), have it actually with you (im a forgetful person).
    </QUOTE>

    Yes that's exactly the point. On my current (dying) pc laptop I alternate the batteries every few days. Sometimes before a trip I will make a point to ensure one battery is charged then swap batteries to make sure the other is also then I know I have plenty of charge. But it isn't often that one needs to work for more than a couple of hours away from a power supply - so the main advantage would be in making the batteries last longer and being sure that one has another battery (by the time I needed a new battery for my previous laptop the batteries were obsolete and I couldn't get one). So really this question is whether that kind of life - a few days in use then a few days off possibly in a partly-charged state is good for a battery and whether one would get more total life from two batteries used that way than one. I am also unfamiliar with the mac software/hardware relating to charge-level, calibration etc. but I read things on the forums about battery life indicators and so on and wonder how these will relate. With my current non-mac set up I just use the batteries without worrying about the effect of usage patterns on their life and they have lasted well (this laptop is 4 years old and the batteries still hold charge well). So it seems to me that starting with two batteries on a mac would be a good idea but I want to hear if there are relevant effects of usage patterns like this such that having two would gain nothing.

    andy
     
  4. eman macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2007
    Location:
    In the great white north
    #4
    1. Yes, I believe you should be fine, you will need the mini-DVI adapter.

    2. Two batteries can be nice a times (not very often). If you want an extra battery I would recommend buying a used battery from ebay with a low cycle count,maybe less than 50. You can pick up a used battery for a macbook off ebay for around $35, a new battery from Apple is $130 new.
     
  5. slosh macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2006
    #5
    hi,

    from what you're saying about your work habits, i don't think you would get any advantage out of buying a 2nd battery now. others can speak about battery technology in more detail than i, but as i understand it, the longevity of a laptop battery is based both upon the number of charges AND on how old the battery is. most battery cells start to fail at between 2 and 4 years (3 years for a laptop battery is basically what you're looking at before you start noticing a significant change in battery life). in other words, you'd be better served by buying a 2nd battery later, once your present one starts to fail.

    as far as picking one up later, you shouldn't have any trouble. there are plenty of apple and offbrand one's out there. Newertechnology for instance keeps making apple laptop batteries for old laptops. if my (six-year?) old g4 was still around, i could still buy a new battery for it from newtech. my purely subjective impression is that apple laptops tend to have a longer worklife than pc's, hence the continued market for new batteries.

     

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