With the 3DS XL coming with a bigger battery and lasting longer than the original 3DS, my family got talking one breakfast time about which DS console would last the longest. My daughter thought that her DS Lite would outperform her brother’s 3DS. He thought that the DSi XL would last the longest because it was bigger.
The other day I decided to put it to the test with a time lapse video. After talking through how best to test the systems we agreed that they would all be on full brightness and with any WiFi off. We would also include the GBAs and original Gameboy in the test for some extra fun.
As we talked it through it became apparent that we couldn’t make this truly objective. After all, our DS and Gameboy and 3DS consoles are all different ages and would be running different games. But this first run test could be a good starting point for further configurations.
As you can see in the 3DS XL battery test video above, we set up all the handheld consoles in front of an iPhone with the StopMotion app running. It was mounted on a Manfrotto tripod and a Glif clip that I have blogged about previously when discussing stop motion. Our plan here was for time lapse photography, which we achieved by setting the app up to take a picture of the consoles every 10 seconds.
Once it was all set up we started the camera and turned on all of the systems. The kids really got into making sure everything was running just right, and they were all in view of the camera. It turned into quite a little science project — one I may well repeat for other tests.
You can jump to the section of the video with the actual 3DS XL battery test if you like. The results are as follows (again you should note that each device was running a different game and was a different age):
- 4hrs 11mins 3DS
- 4hrs 14mins DSi
- 4hrs 38mins DS Lite
- 5hrs 17mins GBA SP (AGS-101 Bright Screen)
- 5hrs 36mins 3DS XL
- 5hrs 45mins Gameboy Micro
- 5hrs 57mins DS
- 7hrs 50mins DSi XL
- 9hrs 46mins GBA SP
- 15hrs 0mins 3DS (Mugen Pack)
- 31hrs 12mins Gameboy (after filming)
There are a variety of 3DS Battery packs on Amazon to increase battery life, similar to the one used in our test here. The older handhelds in our test underperformed due to the age of their batteries. We are now thinking of purchasing new DS Batteries to increase this life. I was surprised what a difference it made.
(Disclosure: Mugen battery pack provided for previous review)