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HarryH3
Premium
join:2005-02-21
kudos:3
Reviews:
·Suddenlink

Laptop needs to last all day. External battery docks???

Do any laptop makers sell a device to charge a laptop battery outside of the laptop? I have a client that wants to carry a laptop around all day, using it most of the day. The only time it can get plugged in for charging is overnight and during lunch. So morning is covered. But I don't think that a 1-hour charge at lunchtime is likely to top off the battery well enough to get through the rest of the day. Do any reputable manufacturers make some sort of battery charging dock that would charge a spare battery while the laptop is in use elsewhere? I found this on Amazon: »www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001LW···i=507846 but the reviews don't instill much confidence.

If this isn't available, are there any laptops made these days that can be set into a docking station during use? (These were all the rage in the 90's, but every single laptop required a different, expensive docking station, so they seem to have fallen out of favor).

A new laptop will be purchased soon, so if there is something available with a certain model then that is a worthy of consideration. I just haven't seen anything like this so thought I would "ask the audience".


aurgathor

join:2002-12-01
Lynnwood, WA
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Frontier Communi..
I have a Dell laptop with a broken charging circuit, so I just bought an external charger from eBay that connects directly to the battery. It's a little different from what you linked to, and I think it was much cheaper. Works fine. YMMV.
--
Wacky Races 2012!


Octavean
Premium,MVM
join:2001-03-31
New York, NY
kudos:1
reply to HarryH3
I have an Energizer XP18000. The newer Energizer XP18000A model cites up to 42 hrs for a smartphone, 24 hrs for a digital camcorder, 8 hrs for a netbook and 6 hrs for a laptop,....

»www.energizerpowerpacks.com/us/p···dex.html


pnjunction
Teksavvy Extreme
Premium
join:2008-01-24
Toronto, ON
kudos:1
reply to HarryH3
My first thought would be to get a laptop that has good battery life and then get a one or two spares. I could see why you might just want to get a charger if the battery life was only 2 hours per charge, but things aren't that bad anymore unless you're gaming or something.

For example the Dell latitude e6430 lasts for 5+ hours of surfing on wireless in this review (»www.notebookcheck.net/Review-Del···0.0.html).

That's with a 6-cell, so with the 9-cell should last about 8 hours.

So with a 6 and a 9, or a couple of 9's, you should be able to get at least 12 or even 15+ hours out of it.

The only downside is that you would need to remember to charge them all up in the evening to get ready for the next day. They charge pretty quickly though, i think the 6-cell in my e6410 can fully charge in about 90 minutes, so you would just need to remember to plug it in after work and then swap the batteries before bed.

The other sacrifice you are making here is that the e6430 is a relatively small laptop. If you want a bigger 15" 1080p unit like the e6530 the battery life is not going to be as good, probably 3.5-4 hours on a 6-cell instead of 5. At that point you are going to need at least 3 batteries or a charger like you describe.

I also see that you can get an additional 3-cell for the optical bay of the e6x30 line. Not sure it's worth the money but it might be if getting a long time on a single charge (with 9+3 for 12 cells you could get 10+ hours with the e6430!) is important to you. GIven that you say there is some time to charge up at lunch this could do it for you with none of the swapping hassle.

davidhoffman
Premium
join:2009-11-19
Warner Robins, GA
kudos:3
reply to HarryH3
Tekkeon MP3450i R3 Battery Pack for 3G/4G Routers & More - See more at:
»3gstore.com/product/2242_tekkeon···ack.html
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450-10.html

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myPower™ ALL Plus MP3450-10 R3 Extended Battery


Camelot One
Premium,MVM
join:2001-11-21
Greenwood, IN
kudos:2
reply to HarryH3
I have had no luck finding current laptop models that work with a true docking station. The options now are just universal port replicators that do nothing for power.

But.....if your client would be in a position to use a docking station, why not just buy a spare AC adapter to accomplish the same goal?

As for the portable power packs, my experience with them has been that they will run the laptop, or slowly charge the battery, but not both at the same time. This may vary based on the model of laptop and how much power it needs. But regardless, the discharge rate from the battery pack will be less than an AC adapter, so you would get faster charging by just plugging it in.

I will point out that the latest i-7 CPUs will run longer than the latest i-5s, as counter intuitive as that may seem. I've found that per kw/h, the AMD e-350/e-450 series gets the best battery life, but most of the laptop models that have them don't have extended battery options. (which seems stupid) The new(er) ultra-portables have great battery life, (acer S7 for example) but most of them are now using internal batteries that can't be swapped out without removing screws and panels.

If you can go Android, the Asus Transformer series tablets have a keyboard/mouse "dock" that has a massive battery in it. When docked, it looks and feels like a normal laptop. Between the dock battery and the tablet battery, you would get a full day of use.


pnjunction
Teksavvy Extreme
Premium
join:2008-01-24
Toronto, ON
kudos:1
said by Camelot One:

I have had no luck finding current laptop models that work with a true docking station. The options now are just universal port replicators that do nothing for power.

I'm not sure exactly what you mean but at work we all have Latitude 'port replicators' that are plugged into the wall via AC adapter and provide power to the laptop when docked. Very convenient since it hooks up power, wired LAN, 2nd monitor and whatever USB accessories you have by simply plunking it down.


Camelot One
Premium,MVM
join:2001-11-21
Greenwood, IN
kudos:2
Then I stand corrected, didn't realize the Dell's still had that option.


AlphaOne
I see
Premium
join:2004-02-21
HP ProBook laptops still use docking stations. I know, it's infront of me right now. I have multiple monitors plugged in, as well as the keyboard (mouse is wireless), and yeah, it charge the laptop's battery too.


Kilroy
Premium,MVM
join:2002-11-21
Saint Paul, MN
reply to HarryH3
The HP EliteBook series has the ability to add a second battery. I don't know how long you would get out of an extended life and secondary long life battery. I'd guess at least six hours depending on use, possibly all day with a lunch time charge.
--
“Progress isn't made by early risers. It's made by lazy men trying to find easier ways to do something.” ¯ Robert A. Heinlein

broccoli

join:2007-11-29
Portland, OR
reply to HarryH3
Take a look at the ThinkPad T series.

Up to 30 hours of (claimed) battery life when used with both the regular 9-cell and the add-on 9-cell slice batteries.

All batteries can be charged using the external battery charger.

2 docks (Mini Dock and Mini Dock Plus) and a port replicator to choose from.


pnjunction
Teksavvy Extreme
Premium
join:2008-01-24
Toronto, ON
kudos:1
Interesting those Thinkpads seem to have even more flexibility than the Dell Latitude's.

Am I correct in assuming that with the regular battery, a slice and the external charger you could keep the laptop on battery indefinitely with no down time? Impressive.

broccoli

join:2007-11-29
Portland, OR
said by pnjunction:

Am I correct in assuming that with the regular battery, a slice and the external charger you could keep the laptop on battery indefinitely with no down time? Impressive.

I am not sure if you can remove the regular battery with the 9-cell slice on, or use the slice alone without the regular battery.


pnjunction
Teksavvy Extreme
Premium
join:2008-01-24
Toronto, ON
kudos:1
said by broccoli:

said by pnjunction:

Am I correct in assuming that with the regular battery, a slice and the external charger you could keep the laptop on battery indefinitely with no down time? Impressive.

I am not sure if you can remove the regular battery with the 9-cell slice on, or use the slice alone without the regular battery.

Hmm yeah i can imagine at the very least the slice probably gets in the way of swapping the regular battery.

I don't see that there would be a problem with swapping slices while using a regular battery though, so one could get two slices and go for quite a while depending on how the regular battery discharges when slices are attached.

HarryH3
Premium
join:2005-02-21
kudos:3
Reviews:
·Suddenlink
reply to broccoli
Just yesterday afternoon, a friend of mine sent me a link to a review of the T430: »www.laptopmag.com/review/laptops···px#specs It does look like it is the solution!

I'd like to know how they can get so much battery life AND use an i5 processor. Impressive.


ccallana
Huh?
Premium,VIP
join:2000-08-03
Folsom, CA
reply to HarryH3
One thing to consider is life cycle of the batteries. My experience in corporate laptop batteries is that over time, they get less and less capacity.

Brand new, my Sandybridge based HP Elitebook could get 6 hours on the standard battery. Put the Slice battery underneath it and I could get 9 hours easy.

6 months later of regular use, it was down to 6 or maybe 7 hours.
--
"We are half-hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us.... We are far too easily pleased." C.S. Lewis