What is the battery life while gaming, 15" 2011 MacBook Pro

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by MadMac84, Feb 28, 2011.

  1. MadMac84 macrumors member

    Jul 2, 2007
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    What is the battery life like while gaming in Win7 on the high end (Radeon 6750, 1gb) 15" MacBook Pro? I have an alienware m11x that can get about 2.5 hours of Mass Effect 2 on battery, but I'd like to take my Mac along with me instead from now on. Reason why I ask is I like to game on plane trips across country. Screen is normally set pretty dim and wireless is off. With an advertised 7 hour battery I'd guess it could do 2 hours at least under this kind of load but if someone has tested I thought I'd ask.
  2. ozred macrumors 6502

    Feb 19, 2011
    It sounds like you're smart enough to NOT ask this question.

    Instead ask _yourself:

    How long has the new Mac been in the hands of customers who would use it exactly the way you would?

    How long have they had to test it?

    There's your answer.
  3. MadMac84 thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 2, 2007
    Why wouldn't I ask this question? It's something I am curious about and I don't know of any place better to ask. Additionally, it's not like it's a really difficult thing to test (just play a game for about 2 hours and keep a timer running...).

    I thought forums were a place to ask questions.
  4. Jaimi macrumors regular

    Jul 22, 2009
  5. Looon macrumors 6502a


    Jul 10, 2009
  6. MadMac84 thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 2, 2007
    Yea, I know about those, but I am rarely on a plane that has them. I am kind of surprised no one has any experience running games on battery, especially since there are so many threads on here about gaming on these machines.
  7. impulse462 macrumors 68000


    Jun 3, 2009
    Because usually people game while plugged in. I obviously don't know the answer but if I had to take a guess, it would be around 3 hours.

    Just for some perspective, I suppose.
  8. MadMac84 thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 2, 2007
    Wow, you think that much! That would be perfect. Can I ask what makes you think that? Or is it really just a guess?
  9. mgartner0622 macrumors 65816


    Jun 6, 2010
    Colorado, USA
    Probably about the same. Windows battery management is horrible.
    I have a friend that uses Win 7 Home Premium on the new 15" low end and it's about 2.5 hours when gaming, and 2.5 hours when not gaming. :rolleyes:
  10. Chazn, Apr 3, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2011

    Chazn macrumors regular

    Mar 25, 2011
    Wow 2.5 hours of playing Mass Effect 2?
    I only get 1.5 hours of battery life while playing Call of Duty 4 in OSX at 60% brightness with wifi turned off and backlit keyboard turned off.

    note: this was on the high end 15inch model
  11. NZed macrumors 65816


    Jan 24, 2011
    Canada, Eh?
    the new core really lowered the battery lifetime... my 2010 C2D could game for about 3-4 hours on Killing Floor Offline (Online about 3 hours or less). Yes Killing Floor is not a graphics demanding game but the OP did ask about gaming and didnt really specify about any games.
  12. Chazn macrumors regular

    Mar 25, 2011
    That's great, for these recent refreshes...to be ABLE to game past my 1.5 hour mark i need to be playing Plants vs Zombies, Angry Birds or other low graphic demanding games. I'm pretty disappointed in Apple this time.
  13. mediasorcerer, Apr 3, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2011

    mediasorcerer macrumors regular

    Oct 30, 2010
    hi mate,i have gamed wiout power plugged in,i got 2.50 mins playing far cry the other day on my new 2011 15-hi res wit the 6750,but i had screen brightness up around 2/3 so,if u got wireless off,dimmed,nothing else running,you may get up to 3 even over id reckon,keyboard backlight off too,good question,regs ms. put it on powersaver too and dial down the prosessor % in power settings,turn on usb suspend,disable all your internet adapter settings,and anything else u can,and run games on low res and video settings set low too,mite look bit crappy,but will use less power,by the way,you can buy external batteries for macbook pros that plug in to provide more juice,

    also get game booster for windows[free]and use it to turn off services running in background,there are other progs that do this too.save power.
  14. kgallag1 macrumors member

    Oct 20, 2009
    Dorval, Quebec
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    Ive got a 17" MacBook pro with similar spec to yours (quad core 2.3ghz sandy bridge, 8gb ram 750gig 7200rpm disk). I'll test it out tonight and see roughly how the battery life does. I'm kinda curious too
  15. xxplosive1984 macrumors regular

    Jun 7, 2009
    Dallas, TX
    Battery life playing COD4 in OSX is an absolute joke! I went from having 5hrs remaining to 53 minutes in a matter of 10 minutes of gameplay. Craziness. For regular tasks, this thing can go all day easily.
  16. Cammer macrumors newbie

    Jan 5, 2011
    Don't be disappointed in Apple! The faster processor uses more juice. There is no way around that. It is simple physics.

    If you bought a muscle car with a big motor would you be disappointed if you didn't get Toyota Prius mileage? It's a similar concept. The 2.3 i7 that I have in my new MBP really sucks the battery fast when gaming. Even when I'm not gaming the case gets warm; something that never happened with my previous MBP (mid 2010, 2.8i7).

    You can't have everything. Do you want a super fast processor or amazingly good battery life? You can't have both, although there are compromises that may be satisfying.
  17. Chazn macrumors regular

    Mar 25, 2011
    Yeah i guess you're right. I'd take a better graphic card and faster cores over "gaming battery life" anyday. It's not like i'll be playing hardcore games outside very often because that will look quite nerdy.
  18. MadMac84 thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 2, 2007
    Well, I got my MacBook Pro a few weeks ago, but never did any of the battery tests until today when I saw someone resurrected my old thread. Here is my first result:

    MacBook Pro 15"
    2.2Ghz Core i7
    8GB RAM
    Radeon 6750m stock speeds
    99% CPU limit (neat trick to keep turbo boost off)
    Keyboard backlight 1/16
    LCD backlight 4/16
    Speakers Off (Used headphones)
    Wireless Off
    Bluetooth Off

    Windows 7 Professional
    Mass Effect 2
    Highest Settings
    16x Anisotropic Filtering
    2x AA

    From Game boot-up to Windows hibernate on full charge:

    Not as good as I wanted, but it will do. At least I could kill an hour on a flight. I'm wondering if I can keep high framerates with a lower CPU threshold or underclocking the GPU...

    Most tests posted as I do them. Crysis 2 and Dead Space 2 next.
  19. Chazn macrumors regular

    Mar 25, 2011
  20. amarcus macrumors 6502

    Feb 26, 2008
    London, UK
    I'd try undervolting and perhaps even underclocking the CPU and GPU. Then lower the graphics settings to compensate. But I'd be interested to know how much gaming time you could squeeze out of the machine.
  21. snaky69 macrumors 603

    Mar 14, 2008
    My bet? About 1.5 hours, tops.

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