The battery life of gaming laptops is notoriously poor. What we aim to discover is how we can get the most playing time out of it.
There is nothing worse than being in the middle of a game and the warning to plug into a power source comes up. Of course, this is not such a big problem if you have one close by, but sometimes you simply don’t.
If you want to learn how to get the most playing time from your battery, then you definitely need to keep reading.
No matter what kind of laptop you have, the batteries are the same. Whether your laptop is a high-end model or a budget one, all batteries use the same technology. Yes, they come in different sizes with different power output, but under the hood, it’s the same across them all.
If you have a gaming laptop, that is probably not what you wanted to hear. You paid a hefty amount for the same kind of tech that is powering a budget laptop. Some may not believe it, and some may argue this fact.
Admittedly, battery technology has changed somewhat since laptops were first brought onto the market. They are better than they used to be, with the most common type used being lithium ion ones. The problem is that this technology has remained relatively unchanged for several years now.
Other technology is advancing, and fast. So, the technology used in the batteries is becoming dated in comparison. This is perhaps more evident for those who use gaming laptops or high-end models.
A quick answer to that question is yes it does. The bigger the battery, the longer the life. Being larger in size allows for more cells to be added to give it more power. The problem with laptops is that they only have a limited amount of space. The design of laptops means there is little room for a battery.
Even though gaming laptops are bigger than your average, everyday one, there still isn’t much room for a bigger battery. With the power a gaming laptop requires, it is easy to see why the battery life doesn’t last long.
You can buy some laptops and the battery would see you through a whole day of school or work. With a gaming laptop, that is certainly not the case.
Gaming laptops are packed with power and performance, with ultra-high definition displays, high-end processors and top of the range graphics cards. All this power requires more juice than the average laptop to run, a lot more.
Combine this power and performance with the same kind of battery that runs a budget laptop and it’s bad news. It means that between charges, the life of the battery is short-lived when gaming.
Now, as a gamer, you bought a laptop for portability so you can game on the go. These machines are superb for gaming, but using them for long periods without a power source is almost impossible.
The hardware of today’s laptops has come a long way, especially in terms of how much power it uses and what it is capable of doing. The hardware we have now is much more efficient than that of the old days.
For gaming laptops, it still isn’t enough. It is a superb quality when it comes to the low-end laptop or a Chromebook. You see those guys boasting a battery life of around eight hours or more. It is very rare, if ever, that a gaming laptop would boast a battery life lasting that long.
Gaming laptops use extremely powerful hardware. Even though modern hardware is much more efficient than it used to be, it still sucks the juice out of the battery. Powering those awesome displays and graphics cards for extreme gaming soon takes its toll.
You could find that when playing some of today’s games, your battery will only last around two or three hours. For some systems, it could be even less.
That means finding a power source to plug into if you want to keep playing. So, the portability of a laptop doesn’t stand for much in this respect.
It is no use to keep complaining about it. We need to try and do all we can to improve the battery life. The good news is that there are a few things we can do. Following these great tips will help you get the most from your battery. Another good thing is that they won’t compromise the performance.
If you reduce the brightness settings of the screen, you will also see some hidden benefits by doing so.
If you’re using applications and games that use a lot of the system resources, turn down the backlight. This serves in reducing heat and improves the lifespan of the display.
Using the display at 100 percent brightness will offer you no benefits at all, unless you are outside in the daylight. The color reproduction and accuracy of highlights would be dramatically reduced.
The ideal setting to save both your eyesight and battery life is between 50 and 80 percent.
When you are using your laptop on the go, it is imperative you do all you can to conserve battery life. Check that all unused apps are turned off. They will be causing an extra drain on the battery and RAM as they run in the background. It is easy to forget these are running in the system tray when the machine is switched on.
When using a laptop equipped with GeForce, you can select different modes from the experience utility. You can limit the performance of games to frame rate using the battery boost.
Combine this with lowering the screen resolution. This will prevent your CPU from working as hard and, subsequently, save more on battery power.
Try to make sure you defragment on a regular basis. Most of us will do this, but probably not as often as we should. A fragmented drive will result in draining the battery. Defragmenting monthly should be sufficient, and you can include it as a scheduled task.
When you aren’t using the machine, it will go into sleep mode by default. Often the default setting for this is around 20 minutes. Adjust your settings so it goes to sleep faster.
Allowing your laptop to power down when not in use saves on the battery life. Yes, it can be a pain waiting for it to wake up again, but it is much better for the sake of battery life.
When you’re running on battery, make sure any scheduled tasks are paused. You don’t want them running in the background and sapping the energy from the battery.
Unless it is absolutely necessary to use them, you should consider unplugging all external devices. One thing that will put a heavy drain on the battery is USB devices. Don’t forget about other things that you may not be using, such as:
If you are not using them, don’t leave disks in the drives. Leaving a disk spinning in the drive will just see power being sucked from the battery.
Blocked and dusty air vents will hold the heat inside of the machine. The increased heat means your laptop will work harder to cool down and this again causes a drain on the battery. Clean all vents regularly.
Avoid using a DVD/CD when running on battery. Instead, load the content onto the hard drive or run it using a free virtual drive.
There are a few other small things you can do to preserve the life of your battery. They may not save huge amounts of power, but every little helps.
There you have some great tips on how to get the most playing time from your gaming laptop battery. You can see the reasons why battery life isn’t long. Hopefully, manufacturers will soon bring the technology of batteries in line with other hardware.
While some of the new hardware works to conserve power, it still isn’t enough for gaming laptops. For now, we have to live with it and do the best we can to conserve the power.
If you are gaming on the go, then you need to consider the access you will have to power sources. Sure, you will get a couple of good hours of play, but then you will need to find a place to plug in and charge.
If you need to use your machine on the go for something other than gaming, then consider taking another laptop. That way you will have something that will last the length of the journey without worrying about battery life.
Marcus has a graduate degree in computer engineering and has many years of experience in cutting-edge technology research and development in both startups and Fortune 500 corporations. In his free time, he enjoys RTS gaming.
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