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Battery Life Testing

If you're shopping for an ultrabook you're likely very interested in what kind of battery life you can squeeze out of these featherweight systems. This is perhaps the most important metric, at least for some, and what we have below are examples of worst case and best case scenarios under light and heavy workloads.

Battery Eater Pro Stress Test and Web Browsing Light Duty Test {Title}
Light and Heavy Duty Workloads
The results below are from our combined Battery Eater Pro (worst case) and Web Browsing only (almost best case) tests. BEP beats on the CPU, GPU, disk and memory while it renders a 3D image and rotates it in real time on the screen. Our light duty, web browser test refreshes a web page of mixed text, graphics, HTML and Flash, every 3 minutes. Both tests are run with display brightness set to 50% with no sleep timers enabled. All other power plan options are left as delivered from the manufacturer.

We also decided to show what the machine was capable of under a heavy gaming workload, so we looped Far Cry 2 at its highest settings and offer those results here for reference as well.

** Battery Eater test conducted on notebook IGP for Acer Timeline Ultra M3

As you can see, we've got a little more homework to do and we will update this graph to show our best case test condition with the Acer Timeline Ultra M3 under a web browsing only workload.  For now, in the existing data we have, though this Ultrabook has the latest in discrete graphics from NVIDIA on board, when running on integrated graphics, in our worst-case battery eater test, the Timeline Ultra M3 competes with the likes of Asus' highly praised Zenbook.  The Timeline Ultra M3 has NVIDIA Optimus technology on board, so it switches to integrated graphics on the fly when the GPU isn't needed for gaming or video workloads.  In that test case, we saw about 2.5 hours of battery life, which will likely extended significantly under the light duty workload of only web browsing.  In terms of gaming battery life, we observed a little over an hour and a half of untethered up-time.

Again, keep an eye on this page as we'll be updating the graph to show Acer Timeline Ultra M3's browsing only figures later today.

Update:  3/22/2012 - 5:40PM EST - The final browsing only result for the Acer Timeline Ultra M3 has been added to the chart above.  Like the larger Alienware machine, the 15-inch Ultra M3's larger battery helps significantly under light workloads and running on the IGP only, with NVIDIA Optimus technology powering down the discrete GPU.

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