Real-Life Battery Capacity on 2010 MBA under Windows 7 on Bootcamp

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by oshevtsov, Nov 11, 2010.

  1. oshevtsov, Nov 11, 2010
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2010

    oshevtsov macrumors newbie

    Nov 11, 2010
    Kiev, Ukraine
    Yesterday and today measured battery life under bootcamped Win 7. Machine is 2010 MBA Ultimate, Windows 64-bit.

    (1) Yesterday, 10.40 p.m. - 11.30 p.m. = 50 minutes. Starting battery level 96%. Light browsing (5-10 tabs in Chrome with FlashBlock, 30% of flash content clicked-to-play), Outlook in the background. 20% brighteness. After 50 minutes, battery was at 85%.

    (2) With battery at 85%, went to standby from 11.30 p.m. yesterday to 09.36 a.m. today, that is for 606 minutes. Resumed with 81% battery charge, that is 4% drain in 10 hours - seems OK given that this was neither hibernation nor hybrid sleep mode.

    (3) Today, 09.36 - 12.47 = 191 minutes. 40% of time – heavy word processing (several layers of comments and changes in ‘track changes’ mode. 40% of time – heavy excel files, 10+ tabs with VBA and macros. 5% of time – Acrobat Pro, re-arranging PDFs and some OCR. 5% of time – light browsing (5 tabs in Chrome with FlashBlock). Logitech nano receiver in USB port. 75% brighteness. Machine shut down at 4% battery level.

    When awake, WiFi and BT were always on. Always running in background were usual Windows 7 stuff, as well as AV (Kaspersky), ABBYY Lingvo (English-Russian-Ukrainian dictionary), Skype, Outlook, Acrobat tray, Bootcamp, IPod service, Brother network scanner/printer control panel, couple of Windows 7 gadgets.

    This brings me to just above 4 hours battery life at averaged medium load. This is given that starting battery level was 96%, and that 4% drained during standby. And I would like to reflect a bit on this:

    (1) Very decent battery life as compared to my Sony Vaio Z i7, which never lasts beyond 3 hours at best (even when switched to IGP).

    (2) My productivity in WinOffice is 15-20% higher than in MacOffice. This is (a) because I can customize it better; (b) because Windows works with Sharepoint much faster - even though MacOffice has Document Connection, it still sucks as opposed to WinOffice sharepoint integration features; and (c) Word for Mac has serious issues in handling multiple comments/revisions/deletions in 'track changes' mode - it starts slowing down and stuttering, which increases my idle time.

    (3) I do not know what is wrong with me (or with MacOS), but system/interface/menu fonts under MacOS seem blurry to me, both on internal and external displays (I have NEC full HD 23" IPS screen). Windows fonts are crisp, sharp and always very readable -- and I believe this also adds to overall efficiency, at least because eyes are less strained and I do not get tired that quickly.

    (4) Under same usage scenario, I was able to get just above 5 hours under MacOS on same machine (looks like Office is battery hungry, but I`Works lacks essential features I absolutely need).

    Therefore, the 1-hour difference in battery life is mostly offset my by increased productivity under bootcamped Windows 7, which 2010 MBA handles very well.

    Hope this post will be useful to some of you. Sorry for crap English.
  2. foiden macrumors 6502a

    Dec 13, 2008
    Which Macbook Air did you use for this test, and what hardware was it configured with?
  3. oshevtsov thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 11, 2010
    Kiev, Ukraine
    2.13/4/256/13, all maxed out. Don't quite understand what you mean by hardware here... Well, it was just MBA and Logitech wireless mouse.

  4. foiden macrumors 6502a

    Dec 13, 2008
    Thanks. Those numbers were all I needed to know. Just wanted to know which Macbook Air configuration you used.
  5. MacModMachine macrumors 68020


    Apr 3, 2009
    cool, nice test, i will try soon.

    i have tested bluetooth on my 13" 1.86 and found bluetooth enabled on the laptop with a mouse connected only affected my battery life by 17 mins.

    pretty good bluetooth radio in these air's
  6. darngooddesign macrumors G3

    Jul 4, 2007
    Atlanta, GA
    OSX and Windows use different kinds of anti-aliasing so that's why there is a difference. Which you prefer really is a personal preference. I switch between XP and OSX on a daily basis and am not bothered by either aa method.

    Thanks for posting these figures.
  7. linkandzelda macrumors regular

    Nov 8, 2010
    I see. so you got just over 4 hours on the 13" model where users are reporting 11 or so. I guess that its under windows and also was rather heavy usage. Even so its pretty good.
  8. SilentCrs macrumors regular

    Nov 2, 2006
    Have you found your new MacBook Air hibernates in Windows 7? Ever?

    I've gotten used to closing my laptops when I'm done using them and reopening them later. On my "regular" Windows 7 laptop, the machine goes to sleep and then after a few hours hibernates to save battery life. On the Air it stays in sleep mode, which is fine for a few hours but if I leave it for like a day, it wastes a good chunk of the battery. I'm not sure why it never hibernates on its own (I've even lowered the the hibernation setting from the 360 minute default to 60 minutes. After an hour it still doesn't hibernate). Any ideas?
  9. oshevtsov thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 11, 2010
    Kiev, Ukraine
    First thing I did after installing Win 7 was disabling hibernation. Firstly, with SSD, 'clean' boot is not much longer than resuming from hibernation. Secondly, hibernation file takes lots of space (4-6 Gb in my case), and it is not very healthy for an SSD to rewrite this file every time I hibernate.

    As I noted in my OP, battery drain on 10-hours standby was only 4%, which is reasonable and considerably better than on any other machine I have used.


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