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Last reply by 12-05-2022 Unsolved
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XPS 9520 i9 -12900HK - battery life

XPS 15 9520

TL;DR: 9520, bad battery life, let me know how you extend the battery life on your laptop please.

I purchased a XPS 15 inch 9520 i9-12900HK with 32GB ram and OLED screen. The laptop looks great, it's fast, the screen is amazing and I love the sound. However...

I'm getting about 2 to 2.5 hrs battery life out of it, way below what I was expecting. For the last days I have been trying to figure out what the culprit could be. Battery health status is excellent and I didn't expect the problem to be there anyway. I have tried to change several BIOS settings and used the Intel Extreme Tuning Utility to monitor the CPU frequency among other things. I used BatteryBar Pro to see what exactly the battery is doing.

I tried a clean install of Win 11 Pro running from a USB3 stick and battery life already improved. I then played around with my current install and found a massive increase in battery life when switching on the Battery Saver mode permanently (Windows default is to switch it on below 20% I think). This does have a big impact on performance though, as expected. You can see the CPU being throttled back so that obviously has an effect. Thing is though... for a lot of simple tasks, you don't need to run the CPU at 3,4 GHz and 1,4 GHz is enough. So why waste power for a few milliseconds gained in time?

I have also disabled quite a bit of software that automatically runs on start-up. A major one seem to be Adobe (I occasionally run Lightroom and Photoshop) which seems to have lots of helper apps as well. I disabled a dozen other apps (e.g. Logitech software for my mouse, Wondershare updater, etc.) and tried again. And unsurprisingly, battery life  increased again. I also closed many of my tabs in Chrome and only kept those open that I need right now, and not the ones I want to get back to in a week from now. Again, it helps. It's not how I normally use a computer though.

But... and this is my biggest point I'm trying to make here... The battery life of the 9520 is still nowhere near what I was expecting. I was expecting to get realistically about 6 hours of usage out of this laptop when using Chrome, Outlook, Excel and Word. It's great if it runs Netflix for 10 hours, but I use the laptop to type and use the mouse. And even Netflix would get interrupted with other apps. Realistically though, on a fully installed laptop (and not a bare installation), 2 to 2,5 hours seems to be the maximum. Maybe 3 hrs if I go for a few coffee breaks in between.

I have contacted Dell Support about the issue. Their reply is that this is just the way it is and there's nothing they can do about it. What can I say...

Altogether the 9520 is a beautiful laptop but it's meant to be on the charger most of the time. Don't buy it for portability.

If anybody has any great ideas on how to extend the battery life, I'd love to hear them.

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