Apple states that the 2014 11-inch MacBook Air has a battery life of 9 hours and the 13-inch model has a battery life of 12 hours. These stats are for the default configuration:

  • Processor: 1.4GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 (Turbo Boost up to 2.7GHz) with 3MB shared L3 cache;
  • RAM: 4GB of 1600MHz LPDDR3 onboard memory;
  • Storage: 128 Gb or 256 Gb PCIe-based flash storage.

MacBook Air can be upgraded though:

  • Processor: configurable to 1.7GHz dual-core Intel Core i7 (Turbo Boost up to 3.3GHz) with 4MB shared L3 cache;

  • RAM: configurable to 8GB;

  • Storage: configurable to 512GB flash storage.

    I believe the component that has the biggest impact on battery life is the processor, though also RAM could affect battery life. What about storage? Do you have battery life stats of an upgraded MacBook Air?

Power is important for me but also battery life and weight, so I'd buy a MacBook Air, otherwise if I only cared about power I'd buy a MacBook Pro.

  • 2
    And the question is....? Which one should you buy?
    – John2095
    Commented Sep 19, 2014 at 14:05
  • The battery life would ultimately depend upon the usage of different applications on the Macbook.
    – Jash Jacob
    Commented Sep 19, 2014 at 16:34
  • Which one I should buy is up to me, but I would like to know about the battery life..for example if i get a 13-inch macbook air with 1,4GHz i5 processor I have 12 hours of battery life..how many hours of battery life do I get if I upgrade to 1,7 GHz i7 processor?
    – Fabio
    Commented Sep 19, 2014 at 20:15
  • up vote 0 down vote i'd say it has much more to do with your personal habits and use than the cpu or any other component. ie: there's so much variation in the number apple uses, that it's almost worthless. and then trying to figure how cpu capabilities and habits of use matter has got to be a major project. Commented Sep 19, 2014 at 23:41

1 Answer 1


There was a pretty good study done on this specific question done here. Also, it's important to note that Apple's stated battery life is based upon very light workload tests.


Key take aways

  1. Idle/light workload battery time is nearly the same
  2. Medium and heavy workloads the time is reduced (which makes sense since the CPU is doing more)

Spoiler images

Idle Workload
(source: anandtech.com)
Medium Workload
(source: anandtech.com)
Heavy Workload
(source: anandtech.com)

  • I can vouch that the 13-inch Air 2012 i7 is 3 hours under heavy load. :( The only thing I've found that helps is disabling turbo boost.
    – Jeff Ward
    Commented Jul 29, 2015 at 18:07

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