One year ago I reviewed TuneUp Utilities 2011 and thought I summed the features up nicely when I said that it optimized the computer, and kept it fast and stable at the same time. A few weeks ago I was contacted by TuneUp who wanted to do a web-demo with me, to show me the new features, and giving me a chance to ask some questions about the new version of TuneUp. Of course I wouldn’t pass a chance like this and signed up! I was really pleased to see that I was signed up for a meeting with the press contact and co-founder of TuneUp Tibor Schiemann (in addition to contact and co-founder – a really nice guy!)
Tibor fired up his TuneUp Utilities 2012 and showed off some very nice and new features. New in 2012 is the TuneUp Economy Mode which improves battery life by up to 30% on mobile computers, the TuneUp Program Deactivator has been revamped and workes better than ever (fully automated) and the software in general seems to blend with Windows ever better than before.
As mentioned before I reviewed the 2011 version of TuneUp Utilities one year ago, and you can read the review here : TuneUp Utilities™ 2011 – Your PC in top shape – Since I covered the basic features of TuneUp Utilities in that article, I will not write about them again – I will instead cover the new features in depth. I would like to say though – that I feel that the 2012 version and all of its features is more incorporated now seamless in the operating system.
First of all I would like to check out the new Economy Mode that would improve the battery life of the computer. I thought about a great way of testing this – oh well – it’s not great, but it saved me from depleting the battery 100% to get my numbers. In stead I used PCMark Vantage x64 from Futuremark together with BatteryMon from PassMark Software. My scheme is – I charge the battery to 100%, adjust my power options as to desired setting, pull out my power chord, and run PCMark Vantage x64 Benchmark one round covering the suites seen in the picture below. The round would take about 43-44 minutes to complete. When it was completed I noted PCMark Score, how long time it took, and how much battery that was left. Nifty – I know!
What would this nifty test show us?
- How much battery will each power option use?
- How much hardware power (cpu, gpu etc) would you get from each power option?
- Is TuneUp a better choice than Windows 7 own power options?
We start with Windows 7 own Balanced Mode – which normally is used?
Windows 7 Balanced Power Mode :
- PCMark score – 8956 PCMarks
- Time : 42.59 min
- % left on battery : 45
Windows 7 own Power Saving mode – how much battery life can we get from turning this mode on?
Windows 7 Power Saver Mode :
- PCMark score – 8148 PCMarks
- Time : 43.29 min
- % left on battery : 42
In all fairness, I did not configure the Windows Power Modes at all – and I could probably get some more battery life if I did – but I think most users use the default modes (as I did in this test).
Then I installed TuneUp Utilities 2012 and I pressed the “Economy Mode” button. I was then greeted with a small configuration Wizard.
That’s all there is to it. I have configured the “Economy mode”. I then choose the Economy mode itself from the bottom right icon. The screen changes into – what looks like – Windows 2000 – for those of you who remembers that. It strips the Operating System for features and services you don’t need, just to squeeze out a few more minutes of battery life.
TuneUp 2012 Economy mode – battery life in focus only!
TuneUp Utilities 2012 – Economy Mode :
- PCMark score – 5480 PCMarks
- Time : 44:48 min
- % left on battery : 51
I then wanted to try out the “Turbo mode” on batteries also. The Turbo mode is used to push the computer to the limits, giving all the power to the applications, not the Operating System. I have tried this mode when gaming, and it really works. Just like “Economy mode”, it strips the Operating System for all fancy-pantzy stuff like Aero, background pictures, services which is not being used and so on, just to give all of the hardware power to the Application. The Turbo mode is (I guess) not meant to be used on battery, but I wanted to see if my nifty test setup would show the “Turbo mode” pushing the computer!
The installation was giving me a few options, so that I could choose just how many features of Windows 7 I was willing to sacrifice.
And that was the steps you will need to take to be able to enjoy the power of TuneUp Turbo! Now lets see what the results of the test were.
And that concludes the test. Now lets summon it up.
No summary is complete without a chart? No it is not! And by exploring the endless possibilities of Excel I managed to produce this chart :
I think the chart talks for it self. If it doesn’t, here is my thoughts. TuneUp 2012 goes one (or two) steps beyond what Windows does – and you can see this when activating the power-modes. Windows changes, shutting down services, changing the look and feel to give you more battery-life or more power to the applications. In my test the Economy mode provided 51 min left of battery power when ending the PCmark Benchmark, while the Windows Power Saving mode only had 42 min left. This is just 9 min more, but this is on a battery that would only last about 80-90 minutes of PCmark. What if this machine was a computer that could give 5-6 or 7 hours of battery life – think of how much battery-life you could save by using Economy mode. Yes you would loose some PCmarks, but writing a document or presenting your latest Powerpoint presentation would not need many PCmarks to run. Just the same – the Turbo mode gives great results in PCmarks, but of course drains the battery fast, really fast! But who would run Turbo on battery anyway?
I really do like these options! Saving battery or using the Turbo on your newest games have never been this easy!
Next up I will be the testing the revamped feature in TuneUp – Program Deactivator. Stay Tuned