Provides: Extra battery life
Minimum Requirements: MacBook with MagSafe power connector
Price: $199.95 – $499.95
Apple has made their best effort to maximize battery life in their notebook line, but sometimes it’s just not enough. Even if battery life has been extended since previous models, the new MacBooks don’t support swapping of batteries (at least not in a usable fashion). So, what do you do? Call up HyperMac I imagine. They have a new external battery, and it does its job.
It’s a simple problem with a simple fix. You need more battery life, so you need more power. You can fix this problem in a number of different ways. You can dim your backlight, turn off WiFi, and work in battery saving mode. You could bring a power adapter along everywhere you go. But what if you don’t have access to a power outlet? What if you’re in a car? Since the entire MacBook line only accepts MagSafe connectors, you are extremely limited in your power options. You’d have to buy a power inverter in order to power up your MacBook in a car. Or would you?
Turns out, you have another option. Not only can HyperMac’s External MacBook Power battery help alleviate some of your power woes in the form of an external battery (with MagSafe connector), you can also get a car adapter for the included MagSafe connector (no battery necessary). At the time of this writing, the HyperMac Car Charger is included at no additional charge for the top 3 capacity models. Heck, the darn thing will even charge your iPhone or other USB device (but what other device could you possibly need?).
How well does it work? Superbly. I got the chance to try out HyperMac’s top of the line model, the 222Wh. They have a chart on their site with expected battery life extension by model of MacBook assuming WiFi ON, 50% display brightness and Better Battery Life setting. I, of course, just can’t compromise, so I tested it with full brightness, tons of apps running, all antennae on, etc, etc. The chart says that my unibody MacBook Pro should get about 4 times more battery life than normal, so I knew it wasn’t going to live up to that. But to my amazement, it recharged my MacBook Pro (from dead) 3 times before giving up the ghost. I’m seriously impressed.
How about the design? Not bad, especially for external batteries. These things tend to be on the ugly side of ugly, but this one is very tolerable. It’s made out of aluminum and has a white plastic end for the capacity display and connectors. The unit chargers fairly quickly, considering it’s size. Be forewarned, the higher the capacity, the larger the unit, but this is detailed on HyperMac’s site; no secrets here. Still, 5 pounds is not really that bad; heck, that’s about a 30% improvement over a mediocre Will Smith movie.
HyperMac offers the External MacBook Power battery in the following sizes: 60Wh, 100Wh, 150Wh, and 222Wh, though they get progressively out of the range of affordability quite quickly. But if you need extra battery life, you need it, and price may not be a deterrence. In all truth, the only downside to these batteries is their price compared to their utilization. Do yourself a favor and think about how often you’re really going to use this, and then make your decision. If you do decide you need an external battery, you will be very happy with your HyperMac purchase.