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DIY: Battery for long shots
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  • Thats fantastic, I thought of getting a 5000mha 8.4v battery version but wasn't sure if the extra mha would make much of a differnce. 9 1/2 hours is along time and a lot better than a £50 1200mha 7.2 volt battery that last 45 to 112 mins. I may just get a 5000mha battery pack as its only £32 lol.
  • One way of regulating the power to the Panasonic GH2 third party battery pack is a device called a Dynamite DYN4062 Sentry LiPo NiMH Capacity Gauge. It measures the voltage, shows you the voltage and shows you the battery's mha power stored in a bar like form. I bought one since I have two third party battery packs and they last for weeks and weeks.

    your welcome :-)
  • @chrimsbroome

    This meter looks very cool.
  • @Vitaliy - Well it doesn't cost much and it show you two different forms of readings from the battery, which is helpful.

    So hows life then on the engineering front and just in general?
  • I just got my Dynamite DYN4062 Sentry LiPo today and there isn't much too it but it does the one thing that you need to know. The Voltage of the NiMH battery pack and in general how much is left before you get that "battery cannot be used in this camera message". As you know this because the voltage drops just below 8.4 volts. One thing though that I have sent a message to the seller is that you can only set tester at 7.4 volts and 9.6 volts, not 8.4 volts. The device works properly at 7.4 volts but at 9.6 volts the bar status wont work but the voltage will.

    I have asked the seller since it says on the advertisement 3 volts to 20 volts battery, would a get misleading readings and therefor the wrong reading which would lead the battery to go flat out of the blue.
  • A simple tool that tells you why - "Battery Cannot be Used In This Camera"

    4608 x 3456 - 6M
  • Learn't something new recently which really tossed a spoon in the works. Both my two battery packs have lost their ability to charge or sustain a charge for my Panasonic GH2. I was a bit thrown by this because I thought it would last longer than the 6-8 months.

    Well it turns out that no matter how well you treat these dry cells:

    -Dischage them when your not using them -Keep them topped up on every shoot -basically Religously follow step in every anal way possible.

    They will loose their ability to sustain their charge after a curtain period. The thing is the bigger the battery the more coils they have inside them and the more likely it will fail. The shop I bought these from had a 30 day warrenty on these batterys esp for the biggest one. There is a reason for that - its unstable the bigger the size.

    6 months max on 5000mha battery is not bad if your a film studio and can afford too spend money. I think I will have to go lower in capacity if I wont to prolong the life of these batterys.

    (What was really scary though was I did a firmware update and just as I had finised BANG - cannot use this battery in this camera. This was just after I fully charged it. Talk about almost killing my camera.

  • NiMH cells are usually pretty good in terms of life and charge/discharge cycles. Maybe its because you are charging them at a crazy rate? Charging 5Ah batteries in an hour means you are dumping 5A in 1 hour into those batteries. That is a lot of current. However if you do a huge amount of cycles they will eventually die. I think the usual cycles is something like 1000.

    I actually found some 10000mAh batteries for cheapish and am thinking of making a huge pack for time lapses :)

  • I have some rechargeable 1,2v AA's at 3000 mAh per piece. Try to find - or built a box that fits 7 of these Bastardos... 21000mAh should do it! I'll post if it worked out for me.. (My power loader needs 4hrs to feed them up...)

  • @mikidora Unfortunately it doesn't quite work like that :p You need 8.4v so you need 7 of those batteries in series. The total capacity of the battery pack will be 3000mAh since you connect in series.

    IF you connect in parallel you will get a battery pack with 1.2v and 21000mAh, but that won't be very useful.

    For a 8.4v/21000mAh pack you will need 7x7 batteries. i.e. connect 7 sets of 7 cells in series and the series blocks in parallel. Needless to say it will be a giant mutha of a battery pack ;)

    Still 3000mAh is almost twice the size of the stock battery so I say go for it :)

  • @sumo Couldn't you just gimme the blue pill ! My dream was beautiful & felt so real... Me so stupido! Yeah, RC-Batt-Pack will do it ;)

  • @sumo, were did you find this 10000mAh battery thats a bit OTT to say the least. A electronic tech guy told me that because of the high compressed coils in the batterys they are unstable. It may be something to do with how much you pay for them as everything is. I have seen some $17 - 3800mha batterys on ebay that I may get just to prove myself right or hopefully be wrong and it will last 6 months at least.

  • @itimjim, so because its 9v it wont have any problems in the camera like refusing to work with the standard "you cannot use this battery in this camera" - How many hours have you gotten out of it?

  • @itimjim - I'm interested in battery life on that as well.

  • @chrimsbroome The batteries can be had from here:

    Note that they have larger ones too. Check out the M size ones for instance.

    @timjim Are they the same ones that people are reporting that the actual capacity is not the same as what they advertise? I've contemplated using them too but I'm concerned about their reliability and life span.

  • @sumo, thanks for the info - It seems I would have ot construct a pack for myself. I not really experienced in this. I wonder if there is tutorial on how to make one. 1.2 volt x 7 cell = 8.4 volt = 70,000 if I am correct thats a WOW eee WOW WOW.

  • @itimjim

    Hi, I use the same ones as you. My only problem with those is, that I never know if they´re still charging or not, or do I miss something?

    I plug them in, switch to OFF and the green LED lights up aswell as the red one on the charger. And this will never change...

  • @chrimsbroome Its quite easy to make a battery pack. You need some batteries, a connector, some wire, solder and some heat shrink tubing. All that stuff apart from the solder and the soldering iron can be had from battery space. Obviously you'll need some soldering skills too. The parts are pretty big so you don't need to be super precise but you need to be careful you don't overheat the batteries.

    If you search on google for "diy RC car battery pack" or something similar you should get a bunch of hits.

    As for capacity, unfortunately with 7 of those cells, you can only get 8.4v @ 10000mAh (connect in series) or 1.2v @ 70000mAh (connect in parallel). There's no free lunch here :p

  • @Sumo, I could use the old battery pack I have that seems to have lost its charge. I could strip the old Cells and then replace them with the new battery cells. That seems like a quick solution to me. If Not I can alwasy spend $17 on a 3300mha battery pack and see how long that lasts. Hopefully 6 months or so then I can keep them.

    Do ya think the more you pay the more likely the battery will last or could a keep pack last just as long.

  • About battery life. I've not put it through it's paces yet, so it's hard to say. Either way, there's little else on the market for that price, that will power camera, monitor/light and something 5v at the same time.

    I reckon I'll get 3-4 hours out of it, and that will be fine. I'm ordering two more, as they're really cheap, and fit well in the lanparte shoulder mount, with a cable tie, but am searching for a large jubilee clip. There's no indication to remaining charge which is a pain, but I'm happy to just charge all three before a shoot, and know I have enough.

  • @chrimsbroome Not sure about the quality of that particular pack. To be honest I'm not really sure how a "higher quality" battery is better than a "lower quality" battery other than the better one might actually be closer to the advertised capacity. Price is not always the best indicator of quality so you need to be careful ;)

  • @sumo, ok I might get one just to see how long it lasts. I not loosing out on much anyway $17 bucks.

  • @itimjim

    I found an external hard drive that fits the 5V plug, so I´ll let that one run on this battery until it dies. Then hopefully I´ll be able to determine what and when and how those LEDs work... :)

  • I have two of these Traxxas Hi-Energy packs 45000mAh and I haven't used them much (One I had last charged a month ago). So I charged them until the charge indicator went on and left them alone for a while. Now after trying both of them, I get the "this battery can't be used" on the camera after working for a few seconds. Do these battery packs lose charge this fast when left alone?

    Right now, I'm charging one battery at 1A charge rate. Would this be better for the battery, even though they recommend 2A for a higher capacity battery? When I used the higher 2A, the charge lasted for only two hours, which seems short. The other battery would say it fully charged within 30minutes the first time, so I drained and tried to condition it through a few cycles which raised the charging time, but I still feel the charge should take longer for a full charge. Something funny about these batteries.