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Old October 29th, 2008, 03:08 AM   #1
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macbook pro battery

i now use a 'new' (last generation) MBP as my main editing machine. I live in a 'power challenged' region, so lots of fluctuations and cuts, and thus, I need the battery to insure work continuity.
I have read that, using the MBP in this way, it's best to remove the battery and put it in a fridge (can't do that), that using battery power once a week (draining it) will help extend its life, that unplugging the charger when not using it also helps, and if not using the computer for extended periods, storing with battery at half charge is good. I thought of buying a back up battery, but read that its life would shorten just sitting around, so it's best to buy new when needed.
I'm wondering if any knowledgeable souls on this forum have any other tips for preserving battery life?
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Old October 29th, 2008, 04:16 AM   #2
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Battery care

OK, I'm no battery expert but this is what I understand from reading up on this over the last 2 years.

Don't completely drain a Lithium Ion Polymer battery once a week, that is the fastest way to degrade it. The method you describe is only applicable to much older battery technology (non-lithium). Keep it topped up rather than deep discharges. They do degrade over time as air gets in (well Oxygen) so it's best not to buy them until you need them as the typical life span for these things is around 2-3 years or 500 cycles (I say typical, it's very variable). A cycle is a full discharge then re-charge, so, to keep it simple as an example, if you only half discharge and re-charge every time you get 1000 cycles from that battery, follow me?

Heat is also another enemy but as you already know a MBP gets pretty hot when rendering etc. so there is not much you can do about that (I often prop mine up a bit of the workdesk to allow more air underneath). You can get cooling platforms but that seems a bit excessive to me!

I live in a power challenged region also, it's getting too expensive here!
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Old October 29th, 2008, 06:30 AM   #3
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Thanks for your reply Andy.
So then, i'm wondering if this would be the best scenario:
Work with laptop plugged in, unplug when finished- no need to 'exercise' the battery and can keep it at full charge?
will the battery's natural life-cycle remain the same? that is, i assume its charge capacity will diminish over the 2-3 year life-cycle... but will avoiding the drain(not completely!)/charge cycle as much as possible extend its life?
i use a 4"x7"x1" thick piece of foam to keep the MB mostly 'floating' atop a Mbox pro and a (quite) room fan blowing at it (and me!) and it seems to keep it relatively cool in the Burundian heat- the internal fan is rarely on and it is the 7200 drive. and it helps to see/use all the Mbox's controls!
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Old October 29th, 2008, 06:36 AM   #4
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Here's apple's official line:

Apple - Batteries - Notebooks

Cheers,
Vito
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Old October 29th, 2008, 06:49 AM   #5
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thanks for the link, Vito.
from Apple:
"An ideal use would be a commuter who uses her MacBook Pro on the train, then plugs it in at the office to charge. This keeps the battery juices flowing."

Great! i'm screwed! there's no trains in Burundi!!!! AND i'm a man (more or less)!!!
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