The conversation on this page has been archived and is no longer active.

Macbook battery calibration question

Message #1 - Posted 2009/02/14 - yueh_uk

I thought that, after a deep discharge recalibration, the value for "full charge capacity" in System Profiler, returned as "maximum battery charge" and "current battery capacity" in CoconutBattery, remained fixed until the next recalibration. After my last recalibration, the value is jumping about daily, albeit over a fairly small range (~100mAh). Is this a Portent of Doom?

Message #2 - Posted 2009/02/14 - Jaimie Vandenbergh

On Sat, 14 Feb 2009 09:00:57 +0000, yueh_uk@yahoo.co.uk wrote:

I thought that, after a deep discharge recalibration, the value for "full charge capacity" in System Profiler, returned as "maximum battery charge" and "current battery capacity" in CoconutBattery, remained fixed until the next recalibration. After my last recalibration, the value is jumping about daily, albeit over a fairly small range (~100mAh). Is this a Portent of Doom?

Portent of variable temperature, mostly. Not something to worry about.

Cheers - Jaimie

"While preceding your entrance with a grenade is a good tactic in Quake, it can lead to problems if attempted at work." -- Chris Hacking, asr

Message #3 - Posted 2009/02/14 - Simon Slavin

In article <yueh_uk-772582.09005714022009@surfnet-nl.ipv4.ptr.145.109.196.x.invali d

yueh_uk@yahoo.co.uk wrote:

I thought that, after a deep discharge recalibration, the value for "full charge capacity" in System Profiler, returned as "maximum battery† charge" and "current battery capacity" in CoconutBattery, remained fixed† until the next recalibration. After my last recalibration, the value is† jumping about daily, albeit over a fairly small range (~100mAh). Is this† a Portent of Doom?

Deep discharge isn't used with today's battery technology. In fact, competely discharging batteries of current types will ruin them. To answer your question we need to know what kind of battery you're using. We can work that out from what model (precisely) of computer you're using. Or youcould just go to this page

<http://www.apple.com/batteries/>

and not do anything it doesn't mention.

I'm using an evaluation license of nemo since 47 days. You should really try it!
http://www.malcom-mac.com/nemo

Message #4 - Posted 2009/02/15 - Ian McCall

On 2009-02-14 09:00:57 +0000, yueh_uk@yahoo.co.uk said:

I thought that, after a deep discharge recalibration, the value for "full charge capacity" in System Profiler, returned as "maximum battery charge" and "current battery capacity" in CoconutBattery, remained fixed until the next recalibration. After my last recalibration, the value is jumping about daily, albeit over a fairly small range (~100mAh). Is this a Portent of Doom?

Speaking of which, my MBP battery is about a year old, maybe less (not sure but think got recalled) and is currently producing terrible results. Here's the information:
<http://eruvia.org/imagedump/coconutbattery-mbp.png>

That maximum looks way too low for something that age, doesn't it? Am not sure what period I'm getting from it at the moment but feels like an hour or maybe slightly less - I'll deliberately run it all the way flat today whilst timing things to see what I get.

Cheers,
Ian

Message #5 - Posted 2009/02/15 - Chris Ridd

On 2009-02-15 10:03:53 +0000, Ian McCall said:

On 2009-02-14 09:00:57 +0000, yueh_uk@yahoo.co.uk said:

I thought that, after a deep discharge recalibration, the value for "full charge capacity" in System Profiler, returned as "maximum battery charge" and "current battery capacity" in CoconutBattery, remained fixed until the next recalibration. After my last recalibration, the value is jumping about daily, albeit over a fairly small range (~100mAh). Is this a Portent of Doom?

Speaking of which, my MBP battery is about a year old, maybe less (not sure but think got recalled) and is currently producing terrible results. Here's the information:
<http://eruvia.org/imagedump/coconutbattery-mbp.png>

That maximum looks way too low for something that age, doesn't it? Am not sure what period I'm getting from it at the moment but feels like an hour or maybe slightly less - I'll deliberately run it all the way flat today whilst timing things to see what I get.

That looks much too low, and I'd bet that Apple would replace it given its young age.

But what does the "Battery-loadcycles" value mean - the number of deep discharges/recharges? It looks like you use it only on battery for significant periods on 245 days, which might be one of the causes of the reduced capacity.

Chris

Message #6 - Posted 2009/02/15 - Dr Yueh

Previously, Simon Slavin wrote:

Deep discharge isn't used with today's battery technology. In fact, competely discharging batteries of current types will ruin them. To answer your question we need to know what kind of battery you're using. We can work that out from what model (precisely) of computer you're using. Or youcould just go to this page

<http://www.apple.com/batteries/>

and not do anything it doesn't mention.

I follow <http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1490> (if that isn't deep discharge then I don't know what is :) ).
Perhaps I should have put Macbook3,1 in the subject line.

Thank you to Jaimie BTW for his suggestion that temperature variation comes into this- however I still don't grasp why the value in the battery's memory, once arrived at by a "calibration", is changing.

Message #7 - Posted 2009/02/15 - Jaimie Vandenbergh

On Sun, 15 Feb 2009 10:10:11 +0000, Dr Yueh wrote:

Previously, Simon Slavin wrote:

Deep discharge isn't used with today's battery technology. In fact, competely discharging batteries of current types will ruin them. To answer your question we need to know what kind of battery you're using. We can work that out from what model (precisely) of computer you're using. Or youcould just go to this page

<http://www.apple.com/batteries/>

and not do anything it doesn't mention.

I follow <http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1490> (if that isn't deep discharge then I don't know what is :) ).

Deep discharge is a technical term for lead-acid batteries, I think. This is just a normal use - there's still considerable charge left in the battery, otherwise (as Simon says) the battery would be knackered after.

Perhaps I should have put Macbook3,1 in the subject line.

Or in the body - I think Simon missed the Macbook in the subject entirely, since they all use the same family of battery.

Thank you to Jaimie BTW for his suggestion that temperature variation comes into this- however I still don't grasp why the value in the battery's memory, once arrived at by a "calibration", is changing.

Nor do I, now you attract my attention to it. It's not something I'd worry about myself, but I'm easy going like that.

Cheers - Jaimie

'Rings! Rings! Wherever they may be
I am the Lord of the Rings,' said he
'And I'll find them all, wherever they may be
And I'll bind them all in the dark,' said he -- Kevin Ahearn

Message #8 - Posted 2009/02/15 - Dr Yueh

Previously, Jaimie Vandenbergh wrote:

Deep discharge is a technical term for lead-acid batteries, I think. This is just a normal use - there's still considerable charge left in the battery, otherwise (as Simon says) the battery would be knackered after.

Jaimie, you are an optimist while I am a pessimist.
I cannot view the calibration process as normal use. AIUI even the Apple approved calibration process damages the battery slightly. It is the price that has to be paid to update the capacity info on which any time remaining estimate depends. Any user content to forgo that feature and who wished to maximise battery lifespan would be well advised never to calibrate their battery!

Message #9 - Posted 2009/02/15 - Jaimie Vandenbergh

On Sun, 15 Feb 2009 10:49:35 +0000, Dr Yueh wrote:

Previously, Jaimie Vandenbergh wrote:

Deep discharge is a technical term for lead-acid batteries, I think. This is just a normal use - there's still considerable charge left in the battery, otherwise (as Simon says) the battery would be knackered after.

Jaimie, you are an optimist while I am a pessimist.
I cannot view the calibration process as normal use. AIUI even the Apple approved calibration process damages the battery slightly. It is the price that has to be paid to update the capacity info on which any time remaining estimate depends. Any user content to forgo that feature and who wished to maximise battery lifespan would be well advised never to calibrate their battery!

Sod that - if the battery isn't calibrated, the machine might run out of juice and go crunch, losing your data in progress and maybe mashing the filesystem slightly. The balance between discharge/recharging the battery (which is what it's there for, after all) vs data damage is *very* heavily weighted towards letting the battery take the pain, in my opinion.

This is something I'm familiar with, since (until I recalibrated) my Air had taken to doing just that. Very annoying it is too.

Cheers - Jaimie

If you can't behave right, then don't behave at all.

Message #10 - Posted 2009/02/17 - Trooper

On 15/2/09 10:09, Chris Ridd wrote:

On 2009-02-15 10:03:53 +0000, Ian McCall said:

On 2009-02-14 09:00:57 +0000, yueh_uk@yahoo.co.uk said:

I thought that, after a deep discharge recalibration, the value for "full charge capacity" in System Profiler, returned as "maximum battery charge" and "current battery capacity" in CoconutBattery, remained fixed until the next recalibration. After my last recalibration, the value is jumping about daily, albeit over a fairly small range (~100mAh). Is this a Portent of Doom?

Speaking of which, my MBP battery is about a year old, maybe less (not sure but think got recalled) and is currently producing terrible results. Here's the information:
<http://eruvia.org/imagedump/coconutbattery-mbp.png>

That maximum looks way too low for something that age, doesn't it? Am not sure what period I'm getting from it at the moment but feels like an hour or maybe slightly less - I'll deliberately run it all the way flat today whilst timing things to see what I get.

That looks much too low, and I'd bet that Apple would replace it given its young age.

But what does the "Battery-loadcycles" value mean - the number of deep discharges/recharges? It looks like you use it only on battery for significant periods on 245 days, which might be one of the causes of the reduced capacity.

For comparison, my MBP is 15 months old and coconut is showing 87% maximum and 127 battery loadcycles (whatever they are)

T.

Message #11 - Posted 2009/02/17 - Jaimie Vandenbergh

On Tue, 17 Feb 2009 16:50:28 +0000, Trooper wrote:

On 15/2/09 10:09, Chris Ridd wrote:

But what does the "Battery-loadcycles" value mean - the number of deep discharges/recharges? It looks like you use it only on battery for significant periods on 245 days, which might be one of the causes of the reduced capacity.

For comparison, my MBP is 15 months old and coconut is showing 87% maximum and 127 battery loadcycles (whatever they are)

I read a page on the Apple kb somewhere that said "full charge cycle equivalent", so presumably it's the same amount of watts in/out as you would have got through with 127 full charge/discharges. Or maybe the same amount of lifespan reduction as that.

Cheers - Jaimie

"Shellfish are the prime cause of the decline of morals and the adoption of an extravagant life style" -- Pliny the Elder

Message #12 - Posted 2009/02/18 - D.M. Procida

Trooper wrote:

But what does the "Battery-loadcycles" value mean - the number of deep discharges/recharges? It looks like you use it only on battery for significant periods on 245 days, which might be one of the causes of the reduced capacity.

For comparison, my MBP is 15 months old and coconut is showing 87% maximum and 127 battery loadcycles (whatever they are)

My iBook G4 battery: about 28 months, 128 cycles, 87%.

Daniele

Message #13 - Posted 2009/02/19 - Steve Hodgson

D.M. Procida wrote:

Trooper wrote:

But what does the "Battery-loadcycles" value mean - the number of deep
discharges/recharges? It looks like you use it only on battery for significant periods on 245 days, which might be one of the causes of the
reduced capacity.

For comparison, my MBP is 15 months old and coconut is showing 87% maximum and 127 battery loadcycles (whatever they are)

My iBook G4 battery: about 28 months, 128 cycles, 87%.

My MBP battery - one year old, 312 load cycles and currently down to about 50% capacity. I’ve got through two batteries in 28 months here. --
The reply-to email is a spam trap but will be read

Message #14 - Posted 2009/02/19 - Jaimie Vandenbergh

On 19 Feb 2009 23:05:56 GMT, Steve Hodgson wrote:

D.M. Procida wrote:

Trooper wrote:

But what does the "Battery-loadcycles" value mean - the number of deep
discharges/recharges? It looks like you use it only on battery for significant periods on 245 days, which might be one of the causes of the
reduced capacity.

For comparison, my MBP is 15 months old and coconut is showing 87% maximum and 127 battery loadcycles (whatever they are)

My iBook G4 battery: about 28 months, 128 cycles, 87%.

My MBP battery - one year old, 312 load cycles and currently down to about 50% capacity. Iíve got through two batteries in 28 months here.

Wow. What's your work pattern that you can run through a whole charge pretty much every day?

Cheers - Jaimie

'Bother' to your simplistic linear numbering systems -- Nigel Hewitt, describing ukrs dive #100

Message #15 - Posted 2009/02/19 - D.M. Procida

Jaimie Vandenbergh wrote:

My MBP battery - one year old, 312 load cycles and currently down to about 50% capacity. I've got through two batteries in 28 months here.

Wow. What's your work pattern that you can run through a whole charge pretty much every day?

He's obviously a gigolo. No other explanation for such behaviour.

Daniele

Message #16 - Posted 2009/02/19 - Jaimie Vandenbergh

On Thu, 19 Feb 2009 23:14:18 +0000, D.M. Procida wrote:

Jaimie Vandenbergh wrote:

My MBP battery - one year old, 312 load cycles and currently down to about 50% capacity. I've got through two batteries in 28 months here.

Wow. What's your work pattern that you can run through a whole charge pretty much every day?

He's obviously a gigolo. No other explanation for such behaviour.

I was thinking more "two hour train commute with old rolling stock that doesn't have passenger powerpoints", but your idea is far more interesting!

Cheers - Jaimie

I was most impressed when I looked up into the London sky and saw a star through all the light pollution. A few of us checked some astronomy references to try and identify it, and we're reasonably confident that it was Sol. -- Peter Corlett, asr

Message #17 - Posted 2009/02/20 - Chris Ridd

On 2009-02-19 23:20:13 +0000, Jaimie Vandenbergh said:

On Thu, 19 Feb 2009 23:14:18 +0000, D.M. Procida wrote:

Jaimie Vandenbergh wrote:

My MBP battery - one year old, 312 load cycles and currently down to about 50% capacity. I've got through two batteries in 28 months here.

Wow. What's your work pattern that you can run through a whole charge pretty much every day?

He's obviously a gigolo. No other explanation for such behaviour.

I was thinking more "two hour train commute with old rolling stock that doesn't have passenger powerpoints", but your idea is far more interesting!

Hang on - trains have power sockets nowadays? When did that happen, and is it widespread?

Chris

Message #18 - Posted 2009/02/20 - D.M. Procida

Chris Ridd wrote:

I was thinking more "two hour train commute with old rolling stock that doesn't have passenger powerpoints", but your idea is far more interesting!

Hang on - trains have power sockets nowadays? When did that happen, and is it widespread?

No, he really did mean PowerPoints. Some arse gets up and does a lengthy presentation complete with clip art, pixellated photographs and badly-designed graphs. Then all the other passengers have to clap.

Daniele

Message #19 - Posted 2009/02/20 - Ben Shimmin

Chris Ridd <chrisridd@mac.com>:

On 2009-02-19 23:20:13 +0000, Jaimie Vandenbergh said:

On Thu, 19 Feb 2009 23:14:18 +0000, D.M. Procida wrote:

Jaimie Vandenbergh wrote:

My MBP battery - one year old, 312 load cycles and currently down to about 50% capacity. I've got through two batteries in 28 months here.

Wow. What's your work pattern that you can run through a whole charge pretty much every day?

He's obviously a gigolo. No other explanation for such behaviour.

I was thinking more "two hour train commute with old rolling stock that doesn't have passenger powerpoints", but your idea is far more interesting!

Hang on - trains have power sockets nowadays? When did that happen, and is it widespread?

I think all Virgin ones have them, at least.

Hmm, I am the opposite of the above -- laptop two months old, 11 cycles.

b.

<bas@bas.me.uk> <URL:http://bas.me.uk/> `Mother died today. Or maybe yesterday, I don't know.' -- Albert Camus, _L'Etranger_

Message #20 - Posted 2009/02/20 - Jaimie Vandenbergh

On 20 Feb 2009 08:49:58 GMT, Ben Shimmin wrote:

Chris Ridd <chrisridd@mac.com>:

On 2009-02-19 23:20:13 +0000, Jaimie Vandenbergh said:

On Thu, 19 Feb 2009 23:14:18 +0000, D.M. Procida wrote:

Jaimie Vandenbergh wrote:

My MBP battery - one year old, 312 load cycles and currently down to about 50% capacity. I've got through two batteries in 28 months here.

Wow. What's your work pattern that you can run through a whole charge pretty much every day?

He's obviously a gigolo. No other explanation for such behaviour.

I was thinking more "two hour train commute with old rolling stock that doesn't have passenger powerpoints", but your idea is far more interesting!

Hang on - trains have power sockets nowadays? When did that happen, and is it widespread?

I think all Virgin ones have them, at least.

Northern Express - at least the long distance ones - too.

Hmm, I am the opposite of the above -- laptop two months old, 11 cycles.

Two years, 124 cycles.

Cheers - Jaimie

Okay, it works now. Or at least it malfunctions in all the expected ways. -- Mark Edwards, asr

Message #21 - Posted 2009/02/20 - Chris Ridd

On 2009-02-20 08:39:47 +0000, D.M. Procida said:

Chris Ridd wrote:

I was thinking more "two hour train commute with old rolling stock that doesn't have passenger powerpoints", but your idea is far more interesting!

Hang on - trains have power sockets nowadays? When did that happen, and is it widespread?

No, he really did mean PowerPoints. Some arse gets up and does a lengthy presentation complete with clip art, pixellated photographs and badly-designed graphs. Then all the other passengers have to clap.

Heh :-)

Chris

Message #22 - Posted 2009/02/20 - Steve Hodgson

On 2009-02-19 23:14:18 +0000, D.M. Procida said:

Jaimie Vandenbergh wrote:

My MBP battery - one year old, 312 load cycles and currently down to about 50% capacity. I've got through two batteries in 28 months here.

Wow. What's your work pattern that you can run through a whole charge pretty much every day?

He's obviously a gigolo. No other explanation for such behaviour.

I do tend to get untethered once per day.

Cheers,

Steve

The reply-to email address is a spam trap.
Email steve 'at' shodgson 'dot' org 'dot' uk

Message #23 - Posted 2009/02/20 - Chris Ridd

On 2009-02-20 09:25:14 +0000, Jaimie Vandenbergh said:

On 20 Feb 2009 08:49:58 GMT, Ben Shimmin wrote:

Chris Ridd <chrisridd@mac.com>:

On 2009-02-19 23:20:13 +0000, Jaimie Vandenbergh said:

On Thu, 19 Feb 2009 23:14:18 +0000, D.M. Procida wrote:

Jaimie Vandenbergh wrote:

My MBP battery - one year old, 312 load cycles and currently down to about 50% capacity. I've got through two batteries in 28 months here.

Wow. What's your work pattern that you can run through a whole charge pretty much every day?

He's obviously a gigolo. No other explanation for such behaviour.

I was thinking more "two hour train commute with old rolling stock that doesn't have passenger powerpoints", but your idea is far more interesting!

Hang on - trains have power sockets nowadays? When did that happen, and is it widespread?

I think all Virgin ones have them, at least.

Northern Express - at least the long distance ones - too.

The SW Trains from Hampton to Waterloo don't have them.

Hmm, I am the opposite of the above -- laptop two months old, 11 cycles.

Two years, 124 cycles.

3-4 years (!) and 26 cycles. But the battery was swapped in one of the replacement programs a couple of years ago.

Chris

Message #24 - Posted 2009/02/20 - Peter Ceresole

Chris Ridd wrote:

The SW Trains from Hampton to Waterloo don't have them.

Hah! Puddlehopping. Hardly time to get the machine open.

Peter

Message #25 - Posted 2009/02/20 - Chris Ridd

On 2009-02-20 10:13:09 +0000, Peter Ceresole said:

Chris Ridd wrote:

The SW Trains from Hampton to Waterloo don't have them.

Hah! Puddlehopping. Hardly time to get the machine open.

It takes 40-50 mins. Agreed that's not long enough if you're using a Windows laptop, but this 'ere Powerbook opens in a second or so.

It is fascinating seeing all the open WiFi networks as you whizz (OK, crawl) through the city.

Chris

Message #26 - Posted 2009/02/20 - Trooper

On 20/2/09 11:07, Chris Ridd wrote:

On 2009-02-20 10:13:09 +0000, Peter Ceresole said:

Chris Ridd wrote:

The SW Trains from Hampton to Waterloo don't have them.

Hah! Puddlehopping. Hardly time to get the machine open.

It takes 40-50 mins. Agreed that's not long enough if you're using a Windows laptop, but this 'ere Powerbook opens in a second or so.

It is fascinating seeing all the open WiFi networks as you whizz (OK, crawl) through the city.

50 minute train journeys are the perfect length, I find. Just enough time to sit back and watch an episode of 24 (or the like) on your iPod Touch ;)

T.

Message #27 - Posted 2009/02/20 - Sam Nelson

Previously, usenet@trooperlooper.co.uk.invalid says...

On 20/2/09 11:07, Chris Ridd wrote:

On 2009-02-20 10:13:09 +0000, Peter Ceresole said:

Chris Ridd wrote:

The SW Trains from Hampton to Waterloo don't have them.

Hah! Puddlehopping. Hardly time to get the machine open.

It takes 40-50 mins. Agreed that's not long enough if you're using a Windows laptop, but this 'ere Powerbook opens in a second or so.

It is fascinating seeing all the open WiFi networks as you whizz (OK, crawl) through the city.

50 minute train journeys are the perfect length, I find. Just enough time to sit back and watch an episode of 24 (or the like) on your iPod Touch ;)

It would have to be something that didn't result in falling asleep and missing the stop.

SAm.

Message #28 - Posted 2009/02/20 - Chris Ridd

On 2009-02-20 12:33:10 +0000, Trooper said:

On 20/2/09 11:07, Chris Ridd wrote:

On 2009-02-20 10:13:09 +0000, Peter Ceresole said:

Chris Ridd wrote:

The SW Trains from Hampton to Waterloo don't have them.

Hah! Puddlehopping. Hardly time to get the machine open.

It takes 40-50 mins. Agreed that's not long enough if you're using a Windows laptop, but this 'ere Powerbook opens in a second or so.

It is fascinating seeing all the open WiFi networks as you whizz (OK, crawl) through the city.

50 minute train journeys are the perfect length, I find. Just enough time to sit back and watch an episode of 24 (or the like) on your iPod Touch ;)

Nod, I caught up on House on my iPod Touch on the way home on Wednesday. Just the job.

Chris

Message #29 - Posted 2009/02/20 - Woody

Steve Hodgson wrote:

D.M. Procida wrote:

Trooper wrote:

But what does the "Battery-loadcycles" value mean - the number of deep
discharges/recharges? It looks like you use it only on battery for significant periods on 245 days, which might be one of the causes of the
reduced capacity.

For comparison, my MBP is 15 months old and coconut is showing 87% maximum and 127 battery loadcycles (whatever they are)

My iBook G4 battery: about 28 months, 128 cycles, 87%.

My MBP battery - one year old, 312 load cycles and currently down to about 50% capacity. I've got through two batteries in 28 months here.

My MBP battery is two years old I think (I can't remember if i replaced this one),
28 months, 422 cycles and 73%

Woody

www.alienrat.com

Message #30 - Posted 2009/02/20 - Woody

D.M. Procida wrote:

Chris Ridd wrote:

I was thinking more "two hour train commute with old rolling stock that doesn't have passenger powerpoints", but your idea is far more interesting!

Hang on - trains have power sockets nowadays? When did that happen, and is it widespread?

No, he really did mean PowerPoints. Some arse gets up and does a lengthy presentation complete with clip art, pixellated photographs and badly-designed graphs. Then all the other passengers have to clap.

Not if you go in the 'no powerpoint' zone near the back of the train.

Woody

www.alienrat.com

Message #31 - Posted 2009/02/20 - Ian McCall

On 2009-02-20 12:33:10 +0000, Trooper said:

50 minute train journeys are the perfect length, I find. Just enough time to sit back and watch an episode of 24 (or the like) on your iPod Touch ;)

Unless, of course, you listen to podcasts that an an hour long. In which case they're damned annoying...

Paddington->Maidenhead on non-cattle truck: Approx 20 minutes. Not enough time to listen to a half-hour podcast Paddington->Maidenhead on cattle-truck: Approx 50 minutes, just under. Not enough time to listen to an hour-long podcast.

And yes, it does irritate me thank you - how did you notice...?

Cheers,
Ian

Need Help? Have a Question?

Looking for more help, comments, and answers?

Ask your questions on Ask Different. Ask Different is a community of Apple users ready to help.