Powerbook Battery while watching DVD?

Discussion in 'Macintosh Computers' started by smurphur, Jul 25, 2004.

  1. smurphur macrumors member

    May 31, 2003
    Austin, TX
    How long will a 15" powerbook battery live if you were to be watching a DVD? Would it die prior to the end of a 2hr 30min video? Just wondering, since I would assue watching a DVD puts a strane on the laptop, and it wouldn't get the normal 3 or so hours of battery life with the DVD-rom running.

  2. mklos macrumors 68000


    Dec 4, 2002
    My house!
    If you have 100% battery life when starting the DVD, then I don't think you'll have any trouble seeing a full 2:30 hour DVD movie. You may want to go into the Energy Saver System Preference and have it so that it reduces the processor speed when running off the battery. That shouldn't create any problems while watching the DVD, but you should easily be able to watch a DVD movie off your battery. One other thing to do is to turn off AirPort, and Bluetooth if you're not using it as that eats away at your battery. Also if its at night, I'd lower the brightness of the screen which will save battery life too, although if you have the backlit keyboard then it will do that for you as it lights up the keys on the keyboard.
  3. Nermal Moderator


    Staff Member

    Dec 7, 2002
    New Zealand
    Last year, I ran iTunes for an hour, then watched a two hour movie, then ran iTunes for another hour, and there was still some battery left. This was on an iBook (advertised 6 hour battery life), not a PowerBook.
  4. musicpyrite macrumors 68000


    Jan 6, 2004
    Cape Cod
    I reccomend Handbrake for watching DVDs on the go. What you would do for example, if you are going on a plane trip, before hand you could rip the DVD to your hard drive, and while on the plane you could watch off of the hard drive, instead of the computer having to constantly spin up the disk.

    It should save some battery life.
  5. Macmaniac macrumors 68040


    A PB should handle a 2 hour movie and it should have at least an hour of life left, it all depends on how you tweak the power settings.
  6. Chip NoVaMac macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

    Dec 25, 2003
    Northern Virginia
    DVD2OneX could also help in the same situation.
  7. Chip NoVaMac macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

    Dec 25, 2003
    Northern Virginia
    And with the "DVD" setting under the power management there should be no issues.
  8. jsw Moderator emeritus


    Mar 16, 2004
    Andover, MA
    If the purpose of the original question was to determine if the PB could make it through a flight, then I have a vaguely on-topic post: get a 12V CD->120V AV power inverter. Plug it into the power outlet on most planes. Problem solved. Also, you can charge a cell phone, etc. - and you don't need to "pre-burn" the DVDs.
  9. davidahn macrumors newbie

    Sep 19, 2004
    Apple Valley, CA
    Variable Battery Life

    I have an AlBook 15" 1.25 GHz set to battery save, no trouble with a 100 min. movie from DVD, but not much battery life was left after that. I doubt a 2.5-hr movie would work, since w/o using the optical drive I got about 2:30 from my setup. Of course, from other users' reports, battery life seems to vary quite a bit. I'm going to get a Newer Tech 4800 mAh (53.3 Wh) battery to see if I see much better results (I wanted an extra battery anyway, but if I never have to swap on most flights, I'd be ecstatic).

    I tried ripping to MP4, but haven't done any testing (my wife keeps falling asleep during the movie, and I hate watching alone).


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