MacBook Usage Question

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Andrew D., Nov 24, 2007.

  1. Andrew D. macrumors 6502

    Apr 17, 2007
    Chicago, IL
    Ok, this question might be a little out there and probably common sense but I just need to clarify it. Since my sister is moving across country to the west coast, she purchased a new portable 10 inch DVD player for $80 bucks from Target on Black Friday. She's also planning on buying a MacBook to serve her computing needs.

    When she was about to open the DVD player.. I stopped her quickly saying she can watch DVD movies on her future MacBook. My dad and sister then said it's better to watch DVD's on a DVD player and keep the MacBook to it's own needs. Which I agree too but in my opinion both will experience battery life depletion in some way over time but the one thing that got me stumbled was this; "while watching DVD's on the MacBook, will it kill the battery faster than usual usage or is it all the same". This goes for plugged in or not and not battery life but the health of it.

    If this post doesn't make sense, I apologize.. I'll try to clear it up if anything. Thanks for your help!
  2. admiraldennis macrumors regular

    Aug 19, 2002
    Boston, MA
    DVD playing uses more battery life than, say, web browsing. Extra CPU usage (decoding/de-interlacing) + constant optical drive access = more power use.
  3. someone28624 macrumors 6502a

    Aug 15, 2007
    I doubt that watching DVDs hurts the battery life. Just practice good battery hygiene. Leave it unplugged till the battery is almost dead, calibrate the battery, things like that.
  4. richard.mac macrumors 603


    Feb 2, 2007
    51.50024, -0.12662
    calibrating the battery yes this is good battery hygiene. but i wouldnt suggest leaving it unplugged until almost dead and then charging to full all the time.

    battery cycles are what inevitably kills the battery. theres nothing wrong with leaving it plugged in a while while your at your desk. batteries like being more than 50% charged most of the time.

    if you use a macbook on the go all the time just charge it up after youve used it. dont let it die all the time. just remember to recalibrate it once in a while.
  5. acearchie macrumors 68040


    Jan 15, 2006
    I would suggesting just buying the Macbook, you will have a better quality screen and a larger area to watch! It will also mean there is one less thing to carry about.

    If you just keep the laptop plugged in whilst watching you will have no problems. If your really paranoid you can even take the battery out whilst plugged in and watching!

    But if you need the Macbook as a portable DVD Player it will be fine.

    I thinking the majority of people don't realise how good the battery is in a Macbook and will definitely last a sold year at 100% (at least mine has with constant DVD watching and other usage when not plugged in and I'm still at 100% health (and over 400 cycles))

    Hope this helps you and your sister!
  6. Scarlet Fever macrumors 68040

    Scarlet Fever

    Jul 22, 2005
    get a program called MacTheRipper, and rip the DVDs to the MacBook. This removes the drain caused by constantly spinning the DVD around. I did this, and I managed to get through 2 and a bit movies on a single charge. It's also full-DVD quality with menus and all the other special stuff.
  7. Andrew D. thread starter macrumors 6502

    Apr 17, 2007
    Chicago, IL
    Thanks for all your responses everyone! I got another, I guess to clear up some things..

    Pretty much my sister and dad said it's better to watch DVD's on a DVD portable player, but I beg to differ. They pretty much said that watching a DVD on a MacBook will depreciate the MacBook's battery health (not life) faster than on a DVD portable player. They also used the example of a car, if you drive the car more.. the car will depreciate faster than a car that is left in a garage.

    I don't know but with the MacBook, I just can't seem to agree with that. The MacBook's battery health will decrease over time by regular use such as web browsing to DVD watching in my opinion, not faster. Can anyone clarify this even more? If I'm wrong, I guess I am but I'd rather see others reasons first. Thanks again everyone!
  8. 66217 Guest

    Jan 30, 2006
    The more you use the battery the faster it'll loose its "health". But if you ask me, you shouldn't even care about the battery.
    Even calibrating is something that is not 100% necessary. Just use your laptop normally and if you ever find your battery last too little you might as well change it. After all, you buy a laptop to use it.

    I've been using my MB regularly, and after more than a year the battery is still keeping up pretty well.

    As for the car example, I think laptops are very different. I recommend just telling your sister to save the money of the DVD player and later on, when the MB battery starts to loose it's health, buy a new battery.

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