Only Getting 4hrs of Battery Life

Discussion in 'Microsoft Surface Pro 3' started by Michael Lovett, Aug 12, 2014.

  1. Michael Lovett

    Michael Lovett Member

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    My sp3 is not getting anywhere near the 9 hour battery life that's hinted at by MS.
    With a "light load", such as internet browsing, reading mail, Kindle reading, and the screen set to about 60%, I'm getting about 4 hours.

    Is anyone else having this issue? I"m trying to decide whether I have a bad unit (i7) or if this is typical.

    Any input would be appreciated!

    Thanks
    Michael
     
  2. ctitanic

    ctitanic Well-Known Member

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    4 hours sounds too low. Try adjusting the brightness to 25%.
     
  3. leeshor

    leeshor Well-Known Member

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    There is a pile of possible reasons for excessive battery drain. Here is a short list of things to check.

    a) Possible settings on your router if connected by WiFi. (solutions vary) but it can be a real problem.

    b) Frequency of mail syncing, (syncing on IMAP will consume more than POP under some/most conditions).

    c) Size of the mail storage

    d) Off-line syncing, quantity and frequency.

    e) Type of anti virus and frequency of definition updates and scanning frequency.

    f) Corrupt file system, causes the system to struggle, especially if it's on external storage.

    g) Type of browser, (Chrome is a known battery viper)
     
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  4. dman27

    dman27 Active Member

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    I'm getting the same, 4-5 hours on SP3 I7. Brightness is set to about 65% on battery, anything less is unusable to me and strains my eyes.

    I will have to check mail frequency, as I do monitor several mailboxes for professional work.

    I sold my SP1 with the power cover. Definitely regretting not keeping the power cover.
     
  5. JesseDiaz

    JesseDiaz Member

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    @frank - Frank, please don't take this wrong. I just want to get your point of view here...but if your suggestion works and he sees an increased battery life at 25% brightness, doesn't that still means theres something wrong with the SP3? I mean, 25% seems way too low....I would not buy the SP3 if I knew I had to go to 25% brightness to get 6 hours....maybe you were going further with this and I just jumped the gun?
     
  6. ManUnited

    ManUnited Guest

    Jesse – This seems to be the most common (and perhaps the most frustrating) reply. I, too, am not singling out Frank here, as his posts have been some of the most informative that I have read. He is a treasure trove of knowledge and I truly appreciate his instruction.

    However, back to your original point. Almost every post about battery life is responded to by lower the brightness; yet, MS promotes the SP3 for its screen. Turning down the brightness to 25-40% seems counterproductive. If it's not the brightness, it's another concession of "turn this off or turn that off". Again, why buy such a lovely device only to diminish its capabilities?

    All the tests and reviews I have seen state the SP3 will get 7-9 hours on battery. However, I have never got beyond five and I use only IE (mostly in Metro), Word and Powerpoint, and other Metro apps. The first night I used it in class was quite good; but since then, I lose about 20% per hour even at 50% brightness.

    I know this forum has a certain disdain for any comparison to Mac products, but once again, I will remind other users that MS made the comparison in promoting the SP3. I have both a Retina MBP and get between 8-10 hours and never dim the brightness below 50%. I do likewise with my iPad mini Retina. (Again, I am using these two as a reference only due to the screen quality, not to get off Jesse's original topic.)

    If there is a way to increase battery life without reducing some of the functionality or appeal of the SP3, I would like to know, as well.
     
  7. ctitanic

    ctitanic Well-Known Member

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    In my own experience on any tablet. Having the brightness over 50% will decrease the battery life heavily. I always recommend to have it between 25% to 35% maximum.

    Like leeshor already explained (http://www.surfaceforums.net/threads/only-getting-4hrs-of-battery-life.10356/#post-75454) there are many other factors that can affect your battery life.

    I also recommend to run a Battery Report to check how changing the Brightness will affect your battery life:

    powercfg /batteryreport /output %USERPROFILE%\Desktop\battery_report.html

    You can play with Brightness and the time to turn the monitor off and the time to switch to standby to achieve the maximum battery life. But it's very important to cut to minimum the amount of background processes and Apps running (multitask) that you are really not using.

    The bottom line is that battery life changes from user to user and it's a complex equation.
     
  8. ipaq_101

    ipaq_101 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    After I turned off notifications running in the background my battery life jumped to 7 hours from about 5 hours and I use brightness at about 35%. Honestly I couldn't do full 100% brightness, even when plugged in, it's way to bright for my eyes.
     
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  9. ctitanic

    ctitanic Well-Known Member

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    Technically speaking if the Sp3 (42 W) had the battery used in Macbook the battery life would be:

    • MacBook Air with 13” (50W): 11,5 Hours
    • MacBook Pro Retina with 13” (71,8W): 16,6 Hours
    • MacBook Pro Retina with 15” (95W): 22 Hours
    This shows how efficient the SP3 is.

    Source (Spanish): http://wintablet.info/2014/08/poca-bateria-surface-pro-3-vs-macbook-air-vs-macbook-pro/
     
  10. ctitanic

    ctitanic Well-Known Member

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    Correct. Background processes will eat your battery.
     
  11. leeshor

    leeshor Well-Known Member

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    Screen brightness - battery drain is c very common problem across all battery operated devices including phones and other tablets. No 2 people will end up with the same results for the same reasons. The issues usually have a solution but it depends very much on if you're willing or able to do what it takes.

    On 1 specific Android tablet forum where I am on staff, battery drain is as big an issue as it is here, same goes for most of the phones.

    The chief thing to remember is that everyone uses their devices differently and everything that is installed and being used will affect the battery differently from person to person but that does NOT mean your Surface is in any way defective.
     
  12. GreyFox7

    GreyFox7 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    If you monitor system usage with Task Manger or Resource Monitor what are the top users of CPU, Network Disk and can the be optimized? I'm not suggesting you restrain yourself but sometimes the way things are set for Desktop environments is not necessary or efficient.

    I warn you ahead of time running these will use more battery. everything you have running has an impact but its not likely been configured to be efficient.
     

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