Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 07-11-2009, 20:31   #1
Long Range Cruiser
 
MarkJ's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Australian living on "Sea Life" currently in England.
Boat: Beneteau 393 "Sea Life"
Posts: 12,828
Images: 25
New Computer Tech: Speed vs Battery Life

Hi folks.

I am after someone who has TESTED both these types of computers and knows whats best for an onboard Nav and general computer.

There are 2 types of laptops I am looking at

Slow speed, high battery hours 8+ hours claimed.

High Speed, Low battery hours: 5 hours claimed (Ho ho!)


I wonder: Can I have a High Speed one but turn the processor down in Power Management consequently saving the battery but having speed in reserve if I need it?

So here are the 2 types (Types only, please I'm not going specifics here) both same price:

Acer 4810
Core 2 Solo SU3500 1.40GHz
3 MB L2 cache, , 800 MHz FSB, 14" HD, 2GB DDR3 ;


Acer 4736
Core 2 Duo P8700 2.53 HGz
2MB L2 Cache, 800 MHz FSB, Intel PM45 Chipset
14" HD Acer CineCrystal, 2GB DDR2 ,



The 4810 is the 8 Hours claimed batter life. Both have the same actual batteries.


Thoughts, oh wise ones?!



Mark
__________________

__________________
Notes on a Circumnavigation.
OurLifeAtSea.com

Somalia Pirates and our Convoy
MarkJ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-11-2009, 21:39   #2
Do… or do not
 
s/v Jedi's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: in paradise
Boat: Sundeer 64
Posts: 9,198
That core2 solo is a real waste of money because it hasn't got the umpff and it isn't low power.
The second one is a waste of money too imo, but at least it would give something back.

Both are beat by a simple Mac mini, for both performance and power consumption. But, if you put a 24" LCD on that for watching DVD's, the computer power consumption doesn't really matter anymore.

Laptops are for light travel as per car, plane etc. When you use them as the main computer on a boat you are either paying too much (wasting money), or buying new ones all the time (wasting money) because they break down. A Mac mini (running windows if you like) is a much better choice. Throw in an Asus HA1005 for shore party work, with the really power efficient Atom cpu and screen, and you have a hard to beat setup.

cheers,
Nick.
__________________

__________________
s/v Jedi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-11-2009, 22:49   #3
Registered User
 
scotte's Avatar

Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: SF Bay Area, CA, USA
Boat: Privilege 39
Posts: 664
"Slow" is very subjective. Exactly what do you need to run? We've got an EeePC that gets an honest 7-8 hour battery life. Is it slow? It's fine for internet and regular desktop app use, and makes a fantastic electronic chartplotter - you just won't playing any 3D-type games on it.

We don't regret our decision for getting a netbook one bit, and know a bunch of other people who did the same and are VERY happy with the decision.
scotte is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-11-2009, 23:22   #4
Registered User

Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Seattle
Boat: Schock 35
Posts: 157
If you are really serious about battery life, get a netbook. Current champ is Toshiba NB205. These will run nav software fine, but don't do well multi tasking or running 3D games.
__________________
Tom Spohn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-11-2009, 08:25   #5
Do… or do not
 
s/v Jedi's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: in paradise
Boat: Sundeer 64
Posts: 9,198
I agree with the previous two posters. The Asus EeePC's are topped with the 1005HA model I mentioned (the newer ones go Windows 7 and less battery life). The Toshiba NB205 is basically the same netbook and the $30 it costs more will give you a sturdier machine.

So yes, I would go for the Toshiba too.

But all that as a 2nd machine for running around shore, cockpit and deck. I can confirm they run MaxSea very well and an external screen makes that usable as a primary system if budget doesn't allow another system. You do not want to use an Atom CPU (which is key to the battery life of netbooks) for managing your photo collection or editing your video's etc. This is where the Mac mini steps in. I now prefer the Mac over the Pico-ITX machines I use because it's built better and lasts longer, has so much more muscle and only a little more power consumption. I might even boot the Mac OS and try handling my photo's and video's with that because I think it might work better or at least more user friendly. When Apple took that step to Intel CPU's and created the Windows drivers (bootcamp) it entered a new arena where we can use these machines while tasting the Mac experience at the same time. And the price is right, not much more than an Atom netbook!

cheers,
Nick.
__________________
s/v Jedi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-11-2009, 08:39   #6
Do… or do not
 
s/v Jedi's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: in paradise
Boat: Sundeer 64
Posts: 9,198
First what I forgot in my previous post; links to reviews of the netbooks discussed:

Toshiba mini NB205 - Review of the Toshiba mini NB205
ASUS Eee PC 1005HA - Review of the ASUS Eee PC 1005HA

I forgot the 3D games. We do play those games and all systems discussed before in this thread are out of the question. The Mac mini does have an Nvidia graphics system (unbelievable what they fit in that tiny housing) and while you probably can run these games, it'll be too slow to play them (it's an entry level Nvidia and the CPU is still way too slow).

We have two computers that -can- play the games aboard (I don't even know how many computers we have on the boat ;-). One is a gaming grade Dell XPS laptop. Think $3,000.- but it works great and it has a superb 17" screen! The other one is the smallest "big" PC I could build and it's size is much like that of a sailrite sewing machine in it's heavy duty case, so really big for a boat. But that's the smallest animal that can take a high end video card. That video card alone cost more than all the computers discussed in earlier posts. But it allowed me to kick Alexander the Great out of Babylon yesterday after a glorious battle! ;-)

cheers,
Nick.
__________________
s/v Jedi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-11-2009, 10:15   #7
Moderator Emeritus
 
David M's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: San Francisco Bay
Boat: research vessel
Posts: 10,153
An alternative would be to buy a laptop with two batteries and buy some extra batteries. Swap one battery out at a time.
__________________
David

Life begins where land ends.
David M is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-11-2009, 11:05   #8
Marine Service Provider
 
W32PAMELA's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Wewahitchka, FL
Boat: Westsail 32 - Pamela
Posts: 270
Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkJ View Post
Hi folks.

I am after someone who has TESTED both these types of computers and knows whats best for an onboard Nav and general computer.

There are 2 types of laptops I am looking at

Slow speed, high battery hours 8+ hours claimed.

High Speed, Low battery hours: 5 hours claimed (Ho ho!)

I wonder: Can I have a High Speed one but turn the processor down in Power Management consequently saving the battery but having speed in reserve if I need it?
Both CPU's support "speedstep". When this is enabled in windows power management your cpu will run about 1/3 slower than the maximum but will automatically increase to keep up with processing demands. There are 3rd party programs that will allow you to modify the core voltage along with the speed and this will allow a small increase in efficiency but messing with the core voltage can also cause the system to be unstable.

You won't be able to drop the power consumption of the high speed system down to equal that of the low speed system. Both systems will handle normal computing functions equally well (standard Nav programs, office productivity programs, DVD's, MP3's and communication programs) with the low speed system using less power in all cases.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkJ View Post
So here are the 2 types (Types only, please I'm not going specifics here) both same price:

Acer 4810
Core 2 Solo SU3500 1.40GHz
3 MB L2 cache, , 800 MHz FSB, 14" HD, 2GB DDR3 ;
Core 2 Solo SU3500, 1.4 Ghz. - This Cpu has been discontinued. It is a very good ultra low voltage cpu that performs better than the 1.6 Ghz Atom due to its architecture, large 3 Mb L2 cache and better graphics chipset. The graphics section and CPU each have about twice the power consumption of those in the Atom based machines. This is still very efficient, adding maybe 3-5 watts power consumption over an Atom netbook.

Acer usually pairs this with the Intel GS45 chipset that contains their latest graphics accelerator but does not handle HD decoding or blueray


Quote:
Acer 4736
Core 2 Duo P8700 2.53 HGz
2MB L2 Cache, 800 MHz FSB, Intel PM45 Chipset
14" HD Acer CineCrystal, 2GB DDR2 ,
The P8700 cpu is relatively new and the P series are the first mobile Intel cpu's in several years to offer increased speed along with a drop in power consumption. They have 3 Mb of L2 cache. The P series includes the cpu's used in the mini macs.

The Intel PM45 chipset does not include a graphics section. Acer has used the Nvidia Geforce G 105M graphics for this notebook giving it excellent graphics capabilities for a mobile system. There is very little that this system can't handle now or in the next couple of years other than major gaming and professional level video editing.

Regardless of which system you get I would have the memory bumped up to the maximum of 4 Gb at the time of purchase.
__________________
Bob Stewart
W32PAMELA is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-11-2009, 11:24   #9
Moderator Emeritus
 
David M's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: San Francisco Bay
Boat: research vessel
Posts: 10,153
You also invalidate the warranty by changing the CPU's clockspeeds.
__________________
David

Life begins where land ends.
David M is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-11-2009, 11:53   #10
Ren
Registered User
 
Ren's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Sunny FL.
Boat: Yamaha lx210 jetboat no sail boat yet.
Posts: 7
I would stop thinking about underclocking to save battery life. Look in any cop car and you will see a panisonic toughbook.

The tough book 30 has a long battery life and is the most rugged. Its the most expensive though

Toughbook 30 Fully-rugged Laptop details - Official Panasonic Toughbook 30

Lithium Ion battery pack (10.65V, 8550mAh)
Battery operation: 9 hours (Vista), 10 hours (XP) -- 12.5 hours (Vista), 14 hours (XP) including optional 2nd battery
Battery charging time: 5hrs. off/ 8.5hrs. on
AC Adapter


The tough book 52 gives up a litte battery but its almost half price.

Toughbook 52 Semi-rugged Laptop details - Official Panasonic Toughbook 52

Battery operation
-P8600 CPU: 4 hours (with long life battery)
-P8400 CPU: 4.5 hours (with lightweight battery)
-P8400 CPU w/touchscreen: 8 hours (with long life battery)
Battery charging: 4 hrs
AC Adapter


A link to CDW for some price comparison.

Search Results

I know you asked about ACER but I have had nothing but bad luck with them.

Hope this helps,
Ren
__________________
Ren is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 17-11-2009, 19:46   #11
Registered User

Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: the golden state
Boat: pilot cutter
Posts: 289
Low end laptops can be had for $300 - $400 that are fast enough to do most anything that 99% of the general population uses computers for (other than desktop publishing, video/camcorder editing, and 3D games), and are energy efficient to boot. The netbooks are even better and cheaper. People seem to forget that very few programs/applications use both processors on the 'core duo' cpu computers, so essentially it's sitting there spinning its wheels while one processor does most of the work and you essentially have a 1.5 GHz single processor unit and a bunch of marketing hype. It's sort of like people buying HD televisions, not knowing how to hook them up to receive the actual HD programming so they hook them up to regular digital programming, then rave on about how great their 'HD' picture is....when they in fact are looking at a regular TV picture. LOL! Anything over 1 GHz or so will run most chartplotter software under Windows XP. I think SeaClear II says something like 300MHz CPU for a minimum system requirements. Both OpenCPN and Seaclear II run just fine on my little HP mini WinXP netbook. Of course, Windows 7 or that other POS Windows operating system use 90% of system resources just to run themselves and their eye-candy, so you'll naturally need a faster computer and more RAM for anything running under those operating systems. Bottom line...save your money and go with one of the low-end units for onboard use, and use the money you saved as a backup for a replacement in case your laptop gets trashed by a wave.
__________________
Not Sure is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 17-11-2009, 21:56   #12
Registered User
 
aboutgone's Avatar

Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Marathon, Boot key harbor
Boat: CSY 44 w/o hull# 158 S/V Leighward
Posts: 252
We have a Panasonic CF-30 w/ two hard drives and two batteries ...one HDD has XP pro..the other has vista32....we found this one on craigslist for about half the price of a new one......Very rugged laptop..battery last a long 9 hrs.......Also have a home built gaming pc with a 12v PS....but it really sucks the juice when rendering a lot of grfix...........
__________________
Never start vast projects with half vast ideas
aboutgone is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 17-11-2009, 22:28   #13
Registered User

Join Date: May 2009
Location: Valdez Alaska & points beyond
Boat: 36' Cascade
Posts: 59
Images: 1
"
Quote:
Of course, Windows 7 or that other "POS" Windows operating system use 90% of system resources just to run themselves
"

"POS" could only mean vista in that quote. one in the same
__________________
ragdoll is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 20-11-2009, 16:08   #14
Registered User

Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Blue Hill, Maine
Boat: 32' Bob Baker/Joel White Cutter (One-off wood)
Posts: 161
As a side note, if you can wait a while and deal with a computer that is really just a web browser, these promise excellent battery life:

Chrome OS: Internet failing at PC > PC failing at Internet

As an even bigger plus, you don't save any data on them, so if one falls in the drink, you just buy the next and pick up right where you left off...
__________________
marujo.sortudo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-12-2009, 01:55   #15
Long Range Cruiser
 
MarkJ's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Australian living on "Sea Life" currently in England.
Boat: Beneteau 393 "Sea Life"
Posts: 12,828
Images: 25
Hi Folks

I thought I would report back and tell you what eventuated.

I bought the Acer 8 Hour + laptop.

OK I KNEW it wouldn't really go for 8 hours! It goes for about 4 or 5 hours tops, and does take a while to charge.

Thats much better than the 1.5 hours of the old (18 month old) laptop we started with.

The specs of the new are:

Aspire 4810T
Intel Duo CPU
U9400 @ 1.4GHz
Ram 4 GB
64 Bit
320GB hard drive (I think its a static hard drive not a spinny-around one.)
DVD Drive etc
ATI Graphics
Win7

In Kaula Lumpur, Malaysia it cost RM2990 = USD$1,000

It seems to run all the graphics I need for photos, video and charting.
Its better than the old one. The extra battery life is pretty vital for cruising

Mark
__________________

__________________
Notes on a Circumnavigation.
OurLifeAtSea.com

Somalia Pirates and our Convoy
MarkJ is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
battery

Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
GPS battery life Fotoman Marine Electronics 8 08-01-2009 19:24
Battery life sailorboy1 Electrical: Batteries, Generators & Solar 6 30-12-2008 17:20
Test battery life Jack Long Electrical: Batteries, Generators & Solar 12 15-09-2008 17:41
Old battery, new life? SkiprJohn Electrical: Batteries, Generators & Solar 23 06-12-2007 03:27
Battery Life--Storage svHyLyte Electrical: Batteries, Generators & Solar 2 22-11-2007 13:19



Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 13:47.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.