Are you worried about how long your gaming laptop’s battery would last? You are right to have this worry, however, in this guide, we would be answering your question on how long a gaming laptop should last.
Read through this guide, as with the information gotten from this guide would help you, not only to know how long a gaming laptop last, but also to know what measures to put, to make sure the gaming laptop’s battery last longer.
Battery capacity is especially important for those who plan on taking their gaming laptop on the go. If you’re keeping your laptop at a desk most of the time, battery capacity isn’t as important.
A gaming laptop with stellar battery life, , will last around one and ten hours on a single charge. Some laptops will have a much shorter capacity of around five or six hours. Chromebooks tend to have long battery lives because the operating system doesn’t require as much power to operate
Do Gaming Laptops Have Good Battery Life When Not Gaming?
When used for normal tasks such as browsing the web and word processing, some gaming laptops can last up to 6 hours on a single charge. But when GPU or CPU-intensive games and programs are run, the battery discharges a lot faster.
How long a gaming laptop battery should last after each charge?
After the gaming laptop has gone through a full single charge and the power adapter is unplugged, the average laptop battery life is between one and ten hours. This time is dependent on the battery, its capacity (mAH), what’s being done on the laptop, and how old the battery is.
Over time, the gaming laptop battery’s capacity decreases, which means the battery will not last as long as it did when you first got the laptop and continues to decrease over time.
The more software programs that are open and running on your gaming laptop, the less time you get from the battery. When more programs are open, it requires more power for the laptop to keep the programs running.
Other factors that affect the battery life include the brightness of the screen, an active WiFi connection for Internet service, and if you are consuming media. Each of these also reduces battery life.
What’s the overall life of a gaming laptop battery?
A gaming laptop battery should last between two and four years or around 1,000 full charges. The total lifetime of a battery is dependent on several factors. These factors include battery type (NiCad, NiMH, or Li-ion), how often the battery is used, and its age.
Gaming on Battery Power
when gaming on battery there are a couple of different performance modes you can choose from using the GeForce Experience utility. Called Battery Boost, this setting limits the performance of games to a frame rate of your choice between 30 and 60 FPS when enabled.
The idea is that you can cap a game’s performance, leading to lower GPU usage and less battery drain for potentially longer gameplay on battery.
But there’s one critical thing to note here: even when Battery Boost is disabled, you will never achieve the same level of performance as when plugged in. This is down to simple battery physics: the battery can’t provide the 180 to 230 watts that the charger provides, and even if it could, it’d likely run at dangerously hot levels and last for about 15 minutes.
So when gaming on battery, there is a significant power limit no matter what settings or tweaks you make, just keep that in mind.
In some situations, it appears the GTX 1080 Max-Q runs more efficiently than the GTX 1060, allowing higher performance under similar power limits, which is why the 1080 Max-Q is still faster than 1060 on battery in average frame rates. However, the 1080 Max-Q model suffers from horrendous stuttering under this power limit in a handful of titles, in particular Rise of the Tomb Raider, Watch Dogs 2, and Prey.
In these games, there are regular one to two second periods where the framerate dips to under 5 FPS, even when you turn down the quality settings to achieve a more playable average framerate on battery. The regularity of these pauses suggests the system is struggling under the power limit, with small fluctuations in battery output potentially causing the GPU to starve of power for brief moments.
So while the GTX 1080 Max-Q can be faster at times on battery in otherwise very similar systems, it’s the GTX 1060 that delivers more consistent performance on battery, without the same stuttering concerns. In either case, the performance drops are significant enough that you’ll have to turn down the quality levels to low in most games just to achieve frame rates above 30.
Why Do Gaming Laptops Have Bad Battery Life?
Gaming laptop battery life is usually a big concern for any gamer who needs the flexibility of gaming from anywhere without having their laptop constantly plugged-in to a power source.
This is especially true for gamers who travel a lot and those in college. In an ideal scenario, a gaming laptop with a good battery life would allow you to take notes in class and enjoy local multiplayer games like Rocket League with friends without worrying about battery life.
Gaming laptops have bad battery life because they have high-performance parts such as the GPU, CPU, and high-speed fans that are quite power-hungry. Therefore, they drain the battery a lot faster than normal laptops.
- Dedicated Graphics Card
Normal laptops have an integrated graphics card (GPU) built into the CPU which serves the same purpose as a video card. It is perfect for handling basic everyday graphics such as images, videos, and general word processing.
Integrated graphics cards are less expensive, generate less heat, and use significantly less power than dedicated graphics cards. This improves the overall battery life of regular laptops.
The only downside is that integrated graphics cards struggle to perform graphically intensive tasks such as gaming and professional graphic design.
Gaming laptops, on the other hand, have a dedicated graphics card on top of the iGPU. The dedicated graphics card is usually devoted to processing detailed images and complex textures that are common in most modern graphically intensive games such as Far Cry 5 and Metro Exodus.
With a dedicated graphics card, you get much smoother gameplay without lags, stutters, or frame rate drops. VR (Virtual Reality) gaming and 4K gaming is also made possible by the graphic processing power of dedicated graphics cards.
Despite improving graphic processing performance, dedicated graphics cards are not without their drawbacks. They are not only more expensive than integrated graphics cards but are also notorious for draining the battery and generating a lot of heat.
This consequently decreases the battery life of gaming laptops.
- High-Speed Processors
Normal laptops have low-performance processors such as Intel processors U(ultra-low power) and Y(extremely low power) series. Examples include the Intel Core™ i5-6300U and Intel Core i7-3689Y processors.
These processors are built with power efficiency in mind rather than performance.
Power restriction in these processors greatly extends the battery life of normal laptops but makes them inefficient at handling CPU intensive tasks and multi-tasking. They are only good for normal everyday tasks and running light applications.
Gaming laptops have less power restricted processors such as Intel Core i7-4700HQ and Intel Core i9-9980HK. The ‘H’ suffix at the end of these processors stands for high performance.
High-performance processors have a higher maximum clock rate that increases the processing speed and this leads to a smoother gaming experience. On the downside, this results in more power usage, more heat generation, and consequently bad battery life.
In addition, these processors usually have more cores (6 to 8 cores) which are perfect for multitasking and gaming. For example, you can game and stream on twitch simultaneously without experiencing undesirable effects such as lagging.
Processors with more cores need more power to operate as compared to those with lesser cores. This ultimately reduces the battery life of gaming laptops.
- Multiple High-Speed Fans
Laptops have a very small chassis in which all interior components such as the motherboard, heat pipes, RAM, etc. must fit. Cramming components in such a small space heavily restricts airflow and makes it hard for heat produced by the CPU and GPU to escape.
Therefore, fans have to be installed to improve air circulation and cool the interior. Fans in normal laptops spin slowly, and usually, there’s only one fan needed because most of the heat is generated by a single component, the CPU.
One fan spinning slowly and less often consumes little power and hence extends the battery life of everyday laptops.
For gaming laptops it is different. Fans have to drive away the heat produced by both the CPU and GPU in order to prevent thermal throttling. Thermal throttling reduces performance which can result in a bad overall gaming experience.
To improve internal airflow and performance, gaming laptop manufacturers result in installing two or more fast-spinning fans. When gaming or performing CPU and GPU intensive tasks, heat is generated constantly and these fans have to spin fast non-stop to cool the interior.
When a battery has to power two or more fans that spin fast and often, battery life is obviously going to be greatly reduced.
- Backlit RGB Lighting
Many games love to game in the dark or in low light. To make life easier, gaming laptops have backlit keyboards or backlit RGB keyboards that are rare in normal laptops. They make it easy to position your fingers on the right keys and less likely to press the wrong keys.
Even though the backlit keyboards are not power-intensive, they still have to be powered and contribute to reduced battery life.
- Multitasking And Programs Running In The Background
If none of the reasons above explain why your laptop battery discharges so fast, the other reason could be that you have lots of programs running in the background.
Multitasking uses more of your laptop’s CPU resources and causes a lot of heat to be generated. Closing programs that you’re not currently using from the windows task manager helps reduce the stress on your processor and improves battery life.
Tips and help with maximizing your laptop battery life
Gaming takes up a lot of battery juice but if you want your battery to last long here are 3 basic DONT’S
- Avoid leaving it on charge forever
- Restrict your use while it is on the charge
- Lastly, do not let it drain out completely
Below are suggestions and tips that can be followed to help improve and maximize the overall life of your gaming laptop’s battery.
- Full initial charge
After purchasing a new laptop or battery for your gaming laptop, we recommend the battery be charged for no less than 24-hours. A 24-hour charge makes sure the battery is fully charged and helps the battery’s life expectancy. Once it’s fully charged, don’t fully discharge it, if possible.
- Remove the battery if not in use for a long period
If you are mostly using the laptop while it is plugged into a wall outlet, keep the battery out of the computer.
If you do not plan on using your laptop for more than a month the battery should be removed from the computer, even if it’s kept off.
After putting the battery back in after it has not been used, we suggest fully charging it before letting it run off the battery again.
- Fully discharge and recharge
If your battery is not a Li-ion battery, we recommend you fully discharge and recharge your battery at least once every month.
- Avoid extreme temperatures
Not only is it good for your battery but it’s also for your laptop to keep it out of extreme hot or cold temperatures. For example, do not leave your laptop in your car during a hot summer day.
- Clean the contacts
Clean your laptop battery contacts with a cotton swab and alcohol every few months.
After reading through this review, you should know how to maintain a gaming laptop’s battery, and also keep the battery in a good condition for your safe usage.
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