New UMBP 17” battery life and a video problem-a little bit weird

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by 123free, Feb 19, 2009.

  1. 123free macrumors member

    Nov 22, 2006
    OK, I played with my New UMBP 17” for 3 days.
    I did not do tests for CPU, HD, …. Actually, I believe it will not give out surprising scores ---2.66G T9550 will not give out a 2.93G’s score, right?
    I believe everyone want to know about the battery life. So, I did several tests for that and got weird results:
    On Tuesday, after got my New UMBP 17”, I fully charged the battery to 100% and then use it for 1 hour and 5 mins for internet surf and downloaded some files ( use 9600M video card, the LCD is 75%). The battery went to 80%. So, it seems the battery life with 9600M will be nearly 5.5 hours (light use, 75% LCD brightness).
    Yesterday, I used up the battery and fully charged it. It took 2 hour and 15 mins to charge from 0% to 100%. Then, I did a heavy load test. I connected it with a usb hard drive (WD passport) and a usb mouse. I played HD movie with Plex 0.7.7 (the beginning of batman, it is 1080P, VC-1 , use 9600M video card, the LCD is 75%). The battery ran out in 3 hours and 5 mins.
    So, it seems that you can expect a battery life for around 5 hours for regular use (use 9600M, 50-75% LCD brightness, 1/3-1/4 time with heavy load work)
    Today, I test the 9400M. I expect it will have around 7 hours battery life. However, I use it for internet surf (use 9400M video card, the LCD is 50%), 2 hours later, the battery went to 66%. So, the battery life will be 6 hours---much shorter than what apple claimed.
    Actually, when I change from 9400M to 9600M, I experienced a slight and intermittent flickering of the screen (it happens around 5 times out of 10). I changed back to 9400M and then, change to 9600M again… the screen is fine now.
    I do not know if it is a hardware problem (I got a bad apple?) or driver issue. I would like to know if this happens to you guys.
  2. mhnajjar macrumors 6502a


    Mar 3, 2008
    I did not get my 17" yet, but the 15" 2.53 unibody I had had no issues whatsoever. My guess is that you would have to make sure that you have the entire line of the new updates and also wait sometime on the battery and calibrate it before you get anything near from what Apple advertised.

    Good luck and please let us know more about the temperatures and if any screen bleed on your machine. Also the screen model would be nice to share :)
  3. zorahk macrumors 6502

    Jul 18, 2008
    North Korea
    Couple things:

    You need to calibrate the battery as it says in your manual. (I know, who reads those?)

    Secondly, never believe apple's battery claims. Anyone who thought this thing would last 8 hours, I have a bridge to Russia to sell you.

    Third, the 9400-9600m switch causes flickering on all of them sometimes. It's a driver issue. Don't return it for that, you're wasting your time.
  4. 123free thread starter macrumors member

    Nov 22, 2006
    I did the calibration. That is why I spent 3 day to do the test.
    The weird thing is: the battery life with 9400 is almost the same as it with 9600
    This makes me think that when it uses 9400, it does not 'really' turn the 9600 off---actually this may explain the flickering issue--two inputs inference each other.
  5. fleali88 macrumors regular

    Sep 29, 2008
    i have had my 15 inch unibody mbp for 4 days now, and the second i opened it the first thing i did was go to software update, and get all the os updates, firmware updates etc, i garantee 60% of the problems people have are because they havent gotten the updates apple puts out for a reason. chech your softwareupdates. i have had zero problems with my machine, gpu is fast and awesome, battery is perfect, trackpad is perfect, never had one flicker at all.
  6. otis123 macrumors 6502a

    May 4, 2006
    i knew apples claims were a little ridiculous, my mbp get 3.5-4 hours. they probably do the test with the screen at 75%, and airport on, nothing else going on.
  7. zorahk macrumors 6502

    Jul 18, 2008
    North Korea
  8. Golfer00ksu macrumors regular

    Oct 13, 2008
    I get the same on my 15". I never use my screen above 50% brightness also. Disappointing when you pay a premium price. No other issues however.
  9. Intense macrumors regular

    Sep 18, 2008
    how much for the bridge :D

  10. Intense macrumors regular

    Sep 18, 2008
    I agree with fleali88. The following is crucial:

    . battery calibration
    . software updates
    . repair/verify disk after installing any updates
    . i also do a screen color calibration

  11. Boostin macrumors member

    Feb 19, 2009

    apples testing is done at 50% brightness and on wifi surfering multiple web pages and doing basic word processing. U can check on apples website for varification.
  12. smartalic34 macrumors 6502a


    May 16, 2006
    you will probably approach apple's claimed battery life with the following conditions, and I imply no sarcasm here:

    backlight down to lowest level or so
    airport off
    bluetooth off
    no apps open
    leave computer sitting idle


    thats the only way I could do it with my MBP as well (see sig for specs). I get 3 hours with normal browsing, airport on, display on about 90% brightness. I only approach 4.5 hours if I do the above...
  13. rroback macrumors member

    Jun 29, 2007
    You must break in your battery. Although it might not be specifically mentioned in the manual, I assure you, lithium batteries have an initial break in. If anyone wants to get more accurate results, I recommend using the laptop, let it drain 10-20 percent, for appx 20 cycles, and then do a test. I can't tell you the exact percent of improvement, but you'll see an initial capacity gain.
  14. Digital Skunk macrumors 604

    Digital Skunk

    Dec 23, 2006
    In my imagination
    It's a Rev A battery.

    Expect a recall soon where you'll have to take in your ENTIRE laptop! :D
  15. detz macrumors 65816

    Jun 29, 2007
    There is nothing in the manual about this calibration process.
  16. MAGICMOXTER macrumors regular

    Feb 16, 2009
    There is, its in some random part, do you live in the US?

    You can find it on Apples site too easily enough


    First result
  17. detz macrumors 65816

    Jun 29, 2007
    Yes, in the 17" manual the word Calibrating or Calibrate does not exist. Maybe the new batteries don't need this?
  18. Quu macrumors 68030


    Apr 2, 2007
    My estimate in my Menubar on 9400M with Brightness at 50% with iTunes playing is 6 hours and 31 Minutes.

    The battery is fully charged right now (I just got my 17" this morning, specs in sig) so I'll let it run dry then top it up again and see how it performs. I'm using the 2.93 with 7,200 so I'd expect both of those to mean I'll never get anywhere near the 8 hours.

    EDIT:// Here is an image showing the time on Battery 50% brightness, Airport on, Adium and Safari open, iTunes playing Music: [​IMG]
  19. 123free thread starter macrumors member

    Nov 22, 2006
    I did the calibration. the update...everything..
    as I said, the weird thing is: the battery life with 9400 is almost the same as it with 9600:confused:
  20. 123free thread starter macrumors member

    Nov 22, 2006
    the 6:31 shown there is a 'estimate time'
  21. Quu macrumors 68030


    Apr 2, 2007
    Which is why in my post I clearly wrote 'Estimated time'.

    It lasted 6 hours. I put the brightness up a little.
  22. ayasin macrumors 6502

    Jun 26, 2008
    One of the largest drains on your battery under normal operation is the screen. 50% (Apple's test) vs 75% (your test) will make a big difference.
  23. aristobrat macrumors G5

    Oct 14, 2005
    They probably don't. Everything else about the 17" battery is unique.
  24. ayasin macrumors 6502

    Jun 26, 2008
    Alternatively they could come pre-calibrated. People have been reporting 1-2 charge cycles on the battery when they receive it.
  25. PLin macrumors 6502

    Oct 9, 2003
    I think it will be possible to get close to 8 hours, but it's always going to depend on what you're doing. Apple claims 8 hours of wireless productivity. If Safari is the only application open, and you're only browsing one page at a time, and that page doesn't have any Flash content, I bet you'll get 8 hours. If you start opening multiple browser windows or tabs and end up with some Flash advertisements in the background, I guarantee you won't get 8 hours.

    On my MacBook Air, if I close all applications and simply read a PDF ebook in Preview, my battery meter goes to 5-6 hours. If my MacBook Air can last me that long when reading an ebook, I bet I'll be able to get 10-12 hours with the 17-inch.

Share This Page