Terrible Battery Life on Dell XPS FHD 9560 56Whr

Discussion in 'Dell XPS and Studio XPS' started by silv3r, Jul 16, 2017.

  1. silv3r

    silv3r Notebook Enthusiast

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    I got the 9560 FHD 56 Whr 7700HQ version about two months ago, and I haven't used it much off of the charger, but I'm extremely disappointed with the battery life I'm getting. On Power Saver mode with brightness down to the lowest possible setting, I'm only getting ~3:30 off a full battery! That's with a 125mV undervolt as well. Is that to be expected? Are there any other ways to improve my battery life, or at least determine what the causes of such lower performance is?
     
  2. Eason

    Eason Notebook Deity

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    Check task manager for cpu usage while idle. Set graphics to prefer integrated
     
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  3. John Ratsey

    John Ratsey Moderately inquisitive Super Moderator

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    Also run HWiNFO to check the CPU speed - it should spend a lot if its time on minimum. Also load the Sensors tab so that you can check the CPU power and see if the Nvidia GPU is active.

    Have you got anything plugged into any of the ports?

    John
     
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  4. Vasudev

    Vasudev Notebook Deity

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    Did you turn on Battery Saver mode in Windows 10 and checked the battery life? Additionally, you could disable Cortana, Paint 3d, View 3d and other unnecessary apps from running in background. Even disabling from being activated from Lock screen also improves battery.
     
  5. silv3r

    silv3r Notebook Enthusiast

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    With Battery Saver it get's better, around 4 hours, but that still seems subpar to what I've heard is the typical battery life of 6-7 hours. I am using the integrated GPU (confirmed by Nvidia and HWinfo), and my CPU hovers around an average of 890 mhz/core, but it seems that the minimum it can go is 797 mhz, so that seems pretty normal to me. The only thing I have plugged in is a USB logitech mouse receiver.
     
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2017
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  6. Vasudev

    Vasudev Notebook Deity

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    What matters is current wattage pulled by all hardware. If it pulls 10W with wlan and all HW in power saver, it might last 6-7hrs.
     
  7. John Ratsey

    John Ratsey Moderately inquisitive Super Moderator

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    Thanks. We need to dig deeper: What CPU package power does HWiNFO>Sensors show? It should be below 3W at the lower end of the core speed range.

    Also run BatteryInfoView so you can check the actual battery capacity and the instantaneous power drain. 4.5 hours indicates an average power drain of 11 to 12W.

    John
     
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  8. silv3r

    silv3r Notebook Enthusiast

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    Thank you for all the help. I appreciate it a lot. The CPU package power seems to average around 2 W on the lower end. That seems to be about the average drain. Is that typical? I'll also note that after I woke up computer up from sleep, that drain jumped 2-3W for around half an hour. That seems sorta strange to me, but idk if it means anything.
     
  9. John Ratsey

    John Ratsey Moderately inquisitive Super Moderator

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    If the CPU is taking around 2W on idle and up to 5W at other times (housekeeping such as indexing may be active in the background if it thinks the computer is idle) then either something else is guzzling juice or the battery isn't healthy. By consecutively looking at both BatteryInfoView and HWiNFO you can work out the gap between total battery discharge and CPU power consumption. The display backlight can use several Watts but you say that it's already on minimum. If anything is plugged into the USB C port then the Thunderbolt controller might be running and uses several Watts (that's the case with my Precision 5510 (=XPS15 9550) and I don't know if this has been changed on the Kaby Lake platform).

    One way of checking the battery is by a systematic power drain test: For this I use a long mpeg video file (replayed if necessary) and note down the clock time, battery charge level and battery drain rate ever 15 minutes or so. The change in the battery charge should be about the same as the drain rate x time. Plot these as a graph and you should get an approximately straight line. If the battery quickly drops from, say, 25% to nothing then either the battery is sick or badly calibrated. You can fix the latter by lettering it drain to empty by leaving the computer sitting at the BIOS screen and then doing a full recharge.

    John
     
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  10. silv3r

    silv3r Notebook Enthusiast

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    Sounds good. I'll give that a shot and see what happens. Thank you so much for your help!
     
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