MBA 13" 12 hour battery life

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by Dave245, Jul 26, 2014.

  1. Dave245 macrumors 601

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    #1
    Ok so i'm thinking about getting a MBA 13" later this year (if Apple don't release a retina display model) and the main reason i'm going for the Air, is because of the battery life. I just wondered if Apples quoted 12 hours of battery life is accurate? Do you get 12 hours out of yours?

    Also what is your opinion on the portability of the 13" MBA? is it easy to carry around in a bag for university? what do you guys think?
     
  2. SandboxGeneral Moderator

    SandboxGeneral

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    #2
    YMMV regarding battery life, but from what I understand, what they quote is typical of what users get.

    As for portability, you can't get much of a better laptop to carry around in a bag.
     
  3. yosemit macrumors regular

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    #3
    Not very accurate. PC Magazine claims it is 15.5 hours (2013 model). :D
    http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2420468,00.asp

    That's probably the best testing result. Most battery tests on MBA 13 give a number between 12 and 15.

     
  4. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #4
    Yep... I own one (2013 model) and just web browsing and reading emails I easily get the advertised 12 hours. Very lightweight and portable.
     
  5. dwfaust macrumors 68040

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    #5
    Agree with the others. The 13" MBA battery life is amazing.
     
  6. Dave245 thread starter macrumors 601

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    #6
    That's even better, 15 hours would be great.

    I would be surfing the web and mainly writing essays and things like that for university. I have my main iMac for more intense things like editing and gaming. Only other things are watching Netflix and iTunes content such as movies and TV shows.
     
  7. Alphabetize macrumors 6502

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    #7
    The 2013 MacBook Air has crazy good battery life. I had my MBA unplugged for a full day at work (9 hours) on Adobe Illustrator. I get the advertised battery life when doing less intensive things like web browsing and typing.
     
  8. Meister Suspended

    Meister

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    #8
    It heavily depends on the screen brightness and the type of apps you are running and how you are running them.
    With heavy consistent use your battery life will drop drastically.
     
  9. Dave245, Jul 26, 2014
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2014

    Dave245 thread starter macrumors 601

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    #9
    Mainly be used for web browsing, writing essays with Pages and or MS word, occasional Netflix and iTunes watching. It has been a decision between the MBA or the rMBP, but the battery life is clinching it for me along with the portability factor of the MBA.

    EDIT: on my MBP 2011, i tend to have brightness at around 50-70% i use Netflix and iTunes to watch videos, i also surf the web, write essays and thats my usual usage.
     
  10. Meister Suspended

    Meister

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    #10
    again the screen brightness makes a huge difference.

    Netflix will suck the battery dry in no time. You could get 12h out if you just stick to writing.

    I am very sceptical about some of the times people post on here because they do not mention the brightness setting or hiw they exactly use their macbooks.
     
  11. Newtons Apple Suspended

    Newtons Apple

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    #11
    My 13" MBAir is new and I get 12 hours easy. I guess it depends on what you are doing but if just doing the average work and browsing you will not have a problem. If gaming it may be less than 12.
     
  12. Scepticalscribe Contributor

    Scepticalscribe

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    #12
    Invariably, I manage to get a long time (I have never used it for twelve hours straight, but don't doubt that I could mange that) out of my 2013 MBA's battery, which is superb.

    However, as other posters have already observed, a number of other factors can influence this - how many apps are open & running, screen brightness, and so on.
     
  13. Saturn1217 macrumors 6502a

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    #13
    Getting exactly 12hrs takes a little effort (avoiding flash websites, lowering screen brightness etc.) but i can get around 9hrs without really trying and that usually works out to 15+ hrs of real world use when you take into account that you rarely need to use a laptop continuosly without letting it sleep.


    Let's put it this way. I upgraded from a 6 month old 2012 MBA solely for the battery life and obviously ended up taking a hit in the wallet. It was 100% worth it.
     
  14. nexus4life macrumors regular

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    #14
    My father recently got a 13" macbook air. If all you are doing is emailing, web browsing etc. then yes, you will likely get close to 12 hours. If you do anything else though, or multiple things simultaneously, it is much more like 9 or 10.

    Better than my 11", but I only lose ~1.5 hours compared to 13", definitely not 3 hours advertised(apple, ~6 hours claimed by PCMag), but I will take that sacrifice for this incredible portability. Seriously, anywhere an iPad can fit, it's likely this can. And that's awesome.
     
  15. MrMacUser macrumors newbie

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    #15
    I've found a huge difference in battery life when using Chrome vs Safari for web browsing, on the order of 1-2 additional hours using Safari. I was confused why I could never quite reach the advertised 12 hours of usage on my new MBA until I discovered this. With the same number of tabs open on both browsers, Activity Monitor shows Chrome using ~4x as much energy as Safari, quite the battery hog!
     
  16. scaredpoet macrumors 604

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    #16
    Using an SD card will also cause your battery life to take a hit. Powering them takes a bit of energy. Same will be true if you attach anything like bus powered USB hard drives and such.

    That said, without an SD card/USB drive and not-too-heavy use, I easily get 12-15 hours.
     
  17. TMRaven macrumors 68020

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    #17
    Hi. I just purchased a 13 inch model this morning. I've been using it throughout the day alongside with my iMac, transferring files and getting it set-up for myself, testing out some hd streaming from twitch, testing photoshop and multitasking etc.

    8 hours later the battery is at 45%-- 6:20 remaining.



    The battery life is no joke.
     
  18. Dave245 thread starter macrumors 601

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    #18
    If the rumours and reports are to be believed, about a retina MBA i might just wait until October and get a retina one. Hopefully it will still have the great battery life.
     
  19. nexus4life macrumors regular

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    #19
    Per your original post, you were going to wait until later this year anyways. People have been talking about this retina MacBook Air that just "HAS to be coming out this year" ever since 2012 with the rMBP. If it happens, great - I will be happy just like you and many other people. But to deprive yourself of a phenomenal computing experience based on 1 thing: the mere POSSIBILITY of a better display this year, doesn't make a whole lot of sense.

    I think we will know, as usual, around October or November if there is anything, and if not - safe to say we are waiting until end of April at least.
     
  20. Dave245 thread starter macrumors 601

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    #20
    Yea i was planning on waiting until later this year anyway, mainly because i don't go back to university until September. And as a student in the UK i get a discount on Mac's so i was thinking of either getting a maxed out (1.7Ghz, 8GB Ram, 512GB SSD) or waiting until October for the possible release of a rMBA.
     
  21. Ronnoco macrumors 68030

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    #21
    I rarely use my 2013 13" MacBook Air for more than 4 to 6 hours continuously, but on heavy continuous usage days I easily get the 12 hours advertised by Apple. I generally have the display brightness set at about 50% (which for me is plenty bright). The battery life on this 2013 model is nothing short of amazing. I go all day without charging and rarely take my charging brick with me when working away from home for a day.
     
  22. SandboxGeneral Moderator

    SandboxGeneral

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    #22
    How much power could an SD card use to where it would make a noticeable impact on battery consumption?
     
  23. scaredpoet macrumors 604

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    #23
    I'm sure it's not a lot, but still enough to drop my battery life from 13 hours to between 8 and 9. If I plug in a USB hard drive, it drops to about 5-6 hours.

    Bear in mind that the MBA on its own has a power draw of barely 3 watts on light usage. The long battery life isn't so much because the battery is gigantic, but because the power draw from the MBA is tiny. Even a small increase from a memory card or a much larger increase from a bus powered USB hard drive, is going to ramp up the power usage, and suck energy from the battery faster.

    Still, even 5 hours is more than I got from my old 2010 MacBook Pro on its best day.
     
  24. SandboxGeneral Moderator

    SandboxGeneral

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    #24
    We're talking about one of these things right? I find it really hard to believe that this tiny, little memory card could impact the battery life of a laptop by several hours.
     

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  25. scaredpoet macrumors 604

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    #25
    Yes we are, and it's been my experience that yes, it does.

    Again, it's a tiny memory card, but when you look at the MBA and its power draw, that's tiny too. Two tinies equal less-huge battery life in this case.
     

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