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Laptop or Notebook w.long battery life

Discussion in 'Off Topic Threads' started by Quack Shot, Apr 3, 2009.

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  1. Quack Shot

    Quack Shot Active Member

    Mar 14, 2006
    If all you need is something to do email and a little surfing, take a serious look at the "Netbooks". They are mostly Windows XP Home and run for quite a few hours on a charge. There are a few to look at. The MSI Wind with the 6 cell battery and there are a few from Acer that are worth looking at. Lenovo also makes a nice unit, but it is a little more money. They have the N270/N280 Intel Atom processors, work on wireless or wired, and are small and light. Usual screen size is about 10". Be sure to select the models with the higher capacity batteries. It costs less to buy them configured with a higher capacity battery, rather than try to buy an extra battery later on. One drawback. They usually do NOT have an optical drive mounted internally. You would have to obtain a USB external. They aren't too expensive and they make a few "slimline" units for around $50 or so. The Netbooks start at around $300 and go up from there. I would stay away from HP. They seem to have some great features, but their support is the pits and they are more expensive. There is a LOT to choose from in the $350 - $400 range. Sometime later this year, a few might come equipped with the N330 dual core processor. Expect to pay a premium when they are first released. That processor is pretty quick, considering how little power it uses.

    The MSI Wind usually gets over 5 hours on the 6 cell battery, depending on how much you use the wireless network, how bright you set the screen, what applications you run, and what your power options are set to. These processors are aggressive in power saving, since they will throttle down when running on batteries. If you need to run heavier apps, then just plug it in and it can run full bore. These little things are surprisingly powerful. They usually sport 1 Gig of memory (shared w/ video) and a 120 - 160 Gig hard drive. They are about as big as a larger paperback book and weigh about the same, or less.

    Other options would be a standard notebook with a second battery mounted in the optical drive bay in lieu of the drive. That would almost double the "on" time. Dell or Lenovo have many of those options. My Latitude from Dell can hold two batteries that way. They are both the same, so it does not take anything special. I can swap out the battery if I need the optical drive, or use an external. I obtained two extra capacity batteries when I got the notebook originally. Unfortunately, they will degrade over time. The heavier batteries will usually last longer before you need to replace them.

    Sometimes you need to condition the batteries and some manufacturers have a program that will do it. Whatever you do, do not let the batteries discharge completely and stay that way. Take them out of the notebook if you won't plug it in for awhile.

    I usually let the battery discharge fully and then plug it in and charge it up fully overnight. I'll do that about once every month or two. I have a few notebooks over 5 years old with the original batteries and they are still going strong. One was manufactured in 1997 and is still in service with the original battery. A lot depends on how you use it and how you maintain it.
  2. AveragEd

    AveragEd Well-Known Member

    Jan 29, 1998
    Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania
    One of the local battery chain stores - Batteries Plus, Battery Warehouse, I can't recall the exact name - advertises "long life" laptop batteries. You might want to look into that.

    Our kids and I each have an HP laptop and get about five hours on a charge of the original battery. If I used mine very much, I would explore other alternatives, but I seldom turn mine on more than once a week. I use my desktop 95% of the time.

  3. StonewallRacing

    StonewallRacing Well-Known Member

    Jul 17, 2008
    My new MacBook has 5 hours of battery life.

    And it doesn't get virus either!

  4. nspktr1

    nspktr1 TS Member

    Jul 2, 2006
    My Lenovo Think Pad X60 is good for five hours and then the plug in battery will give me another 1.5. Has external CD-DVD for movies but speakers suck, good with headfones tho'.

    BILL GRILL Well-Known Member

    Sep 18, 2006
    dell is advertising one with 18 hours.
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