Poor Battery Life

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by rapps, Feb 21, 2008.

  1. rapps macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2004
    #1
    I'm sorry to start another thread on the battery issues. It seems a lot of us are having problems; whether it's long charge time, poor usage times, or both.

    I can't seem to get 3 hours of life out of this battery and I wanted to know if I was alone on this. I've drained it multiple times and my capacity is at 4829. Sure, with the screen dimmed all the way and everything turned off I can reach 4 hours, but that's not why I purchased this machine.

    With my screen on max, no bluetooth, and wifi on, I struggle to get 3 hours. This is with normal web-browsing, typing in word, etc. Forget about watching a movie, because the time remaining will just drop like a rock. I don't recall what the max capacity was on these batteries. If it's 5200, then I'm already at ~93%. At what point do I go into Apple to demand a new one?
     
  2. crazzyeddie macrumors 68030

    crazzyeddie

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    Location:
    Florida, USA
    #2
    That battery life sounds normal to me.

    Full screen brightness and wifi are the two biggest drainers of battery life... so set your screen brightness to like 75% and only use wifi when you need it.
     
  3. rapps thread starter macrumors regular

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    Jun 17, 2004
    #3
    Thanks for your response. If 2.5-3 hours with wifi and max screen are normal, then why did Jobs claim 4-5 of 'wireless productivity?' If this is what others are getting, so be it. I am just curious whether the times are all over the place and I have a bad battery.
     
  4. netdog macrumors 603

    netdog

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    London
    #4
    Because every manufacturer claims battery life length by citing what you may get if you really try to milk the turkey.
     
  5. Pedromiguel20 macrumors member

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    Feb 11, 2008
    #5
    Hello everyone,

    I'll take advantage of this thread to post my issue. I have heard that a lot of people have retruned their MBA for a second one because of the battery. Do we go to the genius bar to do so? What do we do?

    My issue is that in 5 minutes, 4% of battery goes down ! Even my pc does better and it's 2 years old... Is there really an issue? I have the screen set very low and wi-fi on... Nothing too special nomrally??
     
  6. PDE macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2005
    #6
    Hmm, I think having the screen on the 4th bar below maximum is how low I'd go for comfort and, when I do that, I get about 3 1/2 to 4 hours with wifi on, surfing the net, writing, listening to itunes. No way to get 5 hours unless I turn everything down or off and then it's not longer a very enjoyable computer, is it?

    I don't care if all manufacturers mislead about battery life - that doesn't make it acceptable. I wish, for once, that a company would take the lead and advertise REAL battery life under REAL conditions. Just for fun!


    I still think the MBA battery is not bad, just wish it was a solid, reliable 5 hours under real work conditions.
     
  7. dibara2003 macrumors 6502

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    Hawaii!
    #7
    i get about 4.5 halfway screen brightness, bt off, ap on.
     
  8. crazzyeddie macrumors 68030

    crazzyeddie

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2002
    Location:
    Florida, USA
    #8
    You can't really expect to get the full amount of battery life when using the most battery-hungry parts of the computer.

    The same applies to cars. You don't get the full MPG rating if you accelerate quickly and run the AC. So turn down the screen brightness a little and you'll see a large improvement in battery life.

    To the poster with the 4% of battery life in the first 5 minutes... don't worry about that. The battery gauge is just like the gas gauge in your car, its not 100% reliable. You have to look at the overall battery life, not how fast or slow it goes down.
     
  9. NC MacGuy macrumors 603

    NC MacGuy

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    #9
    I truly don't know how you can have screen turned to max? Mine almost blinds me. Regardless, I get a good 4-5 hours with brightness turned to about 1/2 and AP on running Safari & Office app's. I'm sure I could get 5 hours on a plane with screen turned down running Word and AP off.
     
  10. prominence macrumors regular

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    Jan 31, 2008
    #10
    With Word, Adium, and Safari open, half screen brightness, and wi-fi on, I get about 3 1/2 hours.

    When I modify the screen brightness all the way down to 1 block, it gets nearly 4 hours, sometimes 4:10 if I'm lucky.

    Definitely not 5, but like others have said - it never really reaches the "advertised" capacity.

    Unfortunately, I've become too accustomed to the size, thinness, and weight of the MBA, as well as the amazing LED screen. Looking at my 15" Dell laptop makes me want to puke, it's ugly, heavy, and screen brightness is ****.

    The pros outweigh the cons. I'll be happy doing the battery exchange a year from now.
     
  11. NC MacGuy macrumors 603

    NC MacGuy

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    #11
    Word! :)
     
  12. rapps thread starter macrumors regular

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    Jun 17, 2004
  13. richard.mac macrumors 603

    richard.mac

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    #13
    ap = airport which is Apple lingo for WiFi/wireless
     
  14. rapps thread starter macrumors regular

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    Jun 17, 2004
    #14

    ahh, thanks Rich.
     
  15. mashoutposse macrumors 6502

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    Dec 13, 2003
    #15
    Any type of media playing (Youtube, for instance) will drop the usage time considerably. Heavy video playing can result in less than three hours of productivity.

    Using the screen above half brightness with WiFi on will drop the battery life under 4 hours, with a typical yield of about three hours at full brightness.

    Virtualization software such as VMWare Fusion and Parallels will extinguish the battery as fast as video playback. Forget about doing both simultaneously.

    Tips for maximum battery life:

    -keep the screen brightness at 50% or lower
    -stay away from videos
    -boot into the alternate OS when possible; run Parallels/Fusion only when truly necessary
    -turn off Bluetooth
    -monitor your CPU utilization with a Dashboard widget like iStatPro; aim for sub-20% (ample for normal web browsing and office productivity apps)

    Following the above will get you 4+ hours guaranteed (HDD model).

    Normal usage (50% screen brightness, web browsing, some Youtube here and there) results in a usage time of right around 3.5 hours.
     
  16. nsbio macrumors 6502a

    nsbio

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    Aug 8, 2006
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    NC
    #16
    Because Jobs is a salesman and it is of salesman's nature to lie compulsively. G4 megahertz myth, Macs do not crash, etc. Since they do state iPod's battery life pretty much spot on, I assume they are capable of faithful estimates of battery life in principle. Given that, the fact that battery life on MBA is overstated makes me think that they do it deliberately to make a sale. Imagine what would have happened if the MBA battery life was claimed as 3hrs!

    Just take everything that sales people tell you with a grain of salt and all will be ok. Apple is not lying more than other companies - it is just people have higher expectations of them.
     
  17. Marilynfan macrumors member

    Marilynfan

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2007
    #17
    Can someone tell me if this is normal. After my MBP is fully charged (i.e the light goes green). I unplug it and open it up and look in the top right at the battery and it says 2.00 next to it. Does this mean that I am only getting a 2 hour charge?
     
  18. nsbio macrumors 6502a

    nsbio

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    Aug 8, 2006
    Location:
    NC
    #18
    What does it say after a few minutes of usage while unplugged? The first reading of life remaining is usually incorrect because it is impossible to devise battery life from a short time sample, but it fixes itself in a couple of minutes. At least this is the case for other Apple laptops.
     
  19. quintus314 macrumors newbie

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    Feb 22, 2008
    Location:
    HR, VA, USA
    #19
    get iStat Pro (free) for your dashboard and check your battery health. oh and i get great battery life (6 hrs +) with my screen brightness the lowest it'll go and still be on. you get used to it after a while. i keep bluetooth off and airport on
     
  20. qqbby macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2008
    #20
    Dead battery

    I got my MBA five days now, and I noticed that the battery may be dead, I got similar issues with you guys while charging, even if it is 80% full, the charger time is around 2:13 to be finished.

    I did fully charged the machine when I get it (since when I received it, I can not even start the machine by using the battery only). Then, I play around with it for 2 hours and then go to sleep and the other day come back from work (total shut down time is 18hours), I turned it back on, it stated I only have 30% battery left. My first conclusion is the MBA battery will drain out even in OFF mode.

    I repeat the steps again, it still showing the same issues, I am quit concern now. Paying such high prices and the quality is not satisfied. Did anyone else have the same issue as mine? I am ready to call Apple, but they are closed during weekend. I got mine from online shop and no retail shop in my area, what should I do <..>
     
  21. Marilynfan macrumors member

    Marilynfan

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    Jun 19, 2007
  22. NC MacGuy macrumors 603

    NC MacGuy

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    #22
    Umm, this is a MB Air thread..
     
  23. NC MacGuy macrumors 603

    NC MacGuy

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    #23
    The quality is satisfied. If you charged it, then used it for 2 hours and then left it off for 18 hours without charging, then turned it on and have 30% left, that's pretty good. The battery usually lasts about 4-4 1/2 hours on full charge so you are pretty close to being satisfied.
     

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