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Of laptops and power.

RohaqRohaq Registered User regular
edited September 2007 in Games and Technology
So I'm looking at a new laptop for university. I already have a laptop, but with only 1 hour and 30 minutes battery life, it's not exactly well suited to much more than sitting on my desk, hooked up to the AC adatper and playing games.

So I need something with better battery life. Something not too powerful, but something that will also last me the 4 years of my studies. My question is, apart from battery capacity, what affects laptop battery life? I know that a faster processor and a larger, brighter screen will suck the life out of batteries, but what about RAM? Will I lose ten minutes by having two sticks of 1GB rather than one? Will a higher capacity hard drive require more power? I know that the speed of it will affect battery life, but does the capacity have any effect either?

Essentially, what should I be avoiding if I want to get maximum battery life out of a laptop? This is a big purchase, so any help is appreciated.

More specifically, I'm looking at the Dell Inspirion 6400, but could afford a few extras if I wanted, I just want to know what I should avoid upgrading to not kill the decent battery life.

Cheers all.

Rohaq on
Spoiler:

Posts

  • alcoholic_engineeralcoholic_engineer Registered User
    edited September 2007
    Keep the screen brightness down. It is easy to do, and makes a big difference in power consumption

    When he's lying shocked and bleeding on the floor, sweep his computer off the desk, sit on his chest and poke him hard in the chest with the tips of your fingers whilst screaming "I'm typing a letter to the queen about what a dick you are!". Then, when you reach the end of the line, slap him hard around the face and shout "DING!".Trust me. He'll grow up to be a doctor.
  • Xenogears of BoreXenogears of Bore Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    The less time your drive has to spin, the better. You can save quite a bit of juice by dumping everything to the hard drive.

    3DS CODE: 3093-7068-3576
  • Brodo FagginsBrodo Faggins Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    Most laptop manufacturers sell battery addons that add something like 5-8 hours to the battery life.

    9PZnq.png
  • RohaqRohaq Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    Yep, going for the high-capacity battery with the Dell - At £24 its a bargain.

    And Xenogears, do you mean optical drive or HDD?

    Spoiler:
  • Xenogears of BoreXenogears of Bore Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    The less anything spins, the better. Optical drives need more juice, Loading stuff to the HD will save a small, but noticable amount of power.

    The less you do, the less power is consumed. Not using the internet? Turn off the wireless. Stuff like that.

    3DS CODE: 3093-7068-3576
  • FeralFeral Who needs a medical license when you've got style? Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    Why not just replace the battery in your existing laptop? There's no need to replace the whole damn thing because the battery no longer holds a decent charge.

    every person who doesn't like an acquired taste always seems to think everyone who likes it is faking it. it should be an official fallacy.
    the "no true scotch, man" fallacy.
  • RohaqRohaq Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    Because it's difficult to find a replacement in the UK for the MSI MS-1039 chassis, and it was 1 hour 30 minutes when I first built it.

    This was something I purchased a year ago, before I was considering going to university, as a replacement for a dying desktop I'd had enough of, designed to play games, do Photoshop work on, and other work that required power, hence it has 2GB RAM, a fast processor, a 100GB 7200RPM hard drive and an ATI X1600 on the motherboard.

    Essentially, I don't need this much power for something I may be carrying around campus, so I'd like to know what pitfalls to avoid or hardware to look for if I plan on maximising the battery life available from a new, less power hungry laptop.

    Spoiler:
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