What laptop computer has the longest battery life?
January 22, 2006 2:11 PM   Subscribe

What specific laptop computer, Mac or PC, has the longest battery life?

I am in the research stage of upgrading from an old Mac laptop, which has about 2 minutes of battery life (and yes, I am aware that I could just get a new battery from batterytech.com, but I think it's time to get a machine with a clock speed faster than 500mHz!). I'm thinking that I will get a PC, as I'm totally comfortable with either platform, and price is unfortunately an issue. It's difficult enough to compare models thanks to the 3000 varieties for Intel & AMD chipsets, but really anything that is faster than my current rig will be fine. I'm not interested in playing Quake 4 on this thing, I'm just sick of waiting 30 seconds to load apps.

So tell me, laptop users, what is the best I can hope for with these modern power-guzzlers? 2 hours? 4 hours? Are AMD's better than P4's or vice-versa? Is there some awesome power management software that I should be aware of? What brand makes the best batteries? Anything else I should consider?
posted by idontlikewords to Computers & Internet (9 answers total)
I used to* get about 4–5 hours on my 12" 867 MHz PowerBook, without running any intensive software — mostly word processing. Obviously if I'd been playing CDs constantly through the speakers...

* Now, my battery's shot like yours.
posted by cribcage at 2:24 PM on January 22, 2006

My year old powerbook gets 4 hours or so in OS X, 5 hours if I'm in Ubuntu Linux. My brothers iBook does better. I likes that.
posted by zerolives at 2:26 PM on January 22, 2006

There are some specialy designed laptops for long-ass battery life, or at least there were when transmeta was selling their ultralow power chipsets. here is a list of laptops (found by googling for 'long battery life laptops') that are supposed to last more then 5 hours on a single charge.
posted by delmoi at 2:44 PM on January 22, 2006

Best answer: My Dell Inspiron 6000 with an upgraded 9 cell battery gets me about 5-6 hours. The price is pretty decent and you can upgrade on Dell's website. Often, there will be coupon codes on the net. I upgraded mine due to a code that chopped 700-800 dollars off of something like $1499 and up. So, I was able to get some extras.
posted by jne1813 at 3:53 PM on January 22, 2006

Best answer: I think IBM just launched a new laptop with a 12-hour battery life.
posted by reverendX at 4:16 PM on January 22, 2006

Lenovo, rather.
posted by reverendX at 4:16 PM on January 22, 2006

Side-point - If you're open to experimenting with OS/Hardware solutions, A Laptop HD-to-CF adapter along with an OS that will run from memory like Damn Small Linux might get you a lighter-than and Longer-than standard laptop.
posted by Orb2069 at 5:45 PM on January 22, 2006


Lifebooks can get 10 hours plus.
posted by Mossy at 4:45 AM on January 23, 2006

Unlike the last four or five editions of the Powerbook G4, Apple has not published any statistics on the battery life of the upcoming MacBook, preferring to point out that it has a 60 watt-hour battery in place of the previous Powerbook's 50 watt-hour battery.

We're all waiting to see what the real-life battery life of the MacBook is going to be. My hunch is that it's not going to be doing any 4 hour wifi/HD marathons; if it were, it'd be trumpeted from the rooftops, I'd think.
posted by ikkyu2 at 2:50 PM on January 23, 2006

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