rechargeable batteries

Discussion in 'Photography' started by James_Kiang, Oct 27, 2004.

  1. James_Kiang

    James_Kiang Screenwriter

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    I recently bought my wife a digital camera (Canon A75) that is powered by AA batteries. After what seemed like just a couple hours of use the camera is already showing that the batteries are low. I figure I'll buy rechargeables as opposed to buying AA by the boatload [​IMG]. A couple of questions:

    1 - Are rechargeables the way to go? It does seem that over the long run they will be better.

    2 - I've seen some chargers that say they can do the charge in as little as an hour (maybe even 15 minutes) to as much as 15-16 hours. What is the difference in quality between these?

    I know there are other issues - memory and discharging being a couple - but I hope this is enough to help me make a decision. Thanks for your help!

    MODS - If this belongs in a different forum, please move it there.
     
  2. Jay H

    Jay H Producer

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    Rechargeable NiMH batteries are the way to go (unless you want cold weather life then Li-ions are better) for general purpose, you can get 2250mAH AA NiMH batties that should last a bit. As far as the chargers, the slower 15-19 hour chargers are generally better than those fast 1 hour ones in the long run. Not supposed to overcharge them either so getting a good delta-V smart charger is good.

    Jay
     
  3. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Moderator
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    Make the investment with the rechargeables, and you won't regret it.

    I think I have 3 chargers, and probably 6-8 sets of 4 AA rechargeable batteries for my 3 digital cameras that I've collected over the years.
     
  4. James_Kiang

    James_Kiang Screenwriter

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    How's this one?

    Has anyone used batteryspace.com before? That particular link seems like a decent deal based on what I've seen in stores. It is one of the faster chargers though, so I'm a little unsure about it.
     
  5. Cameron Yee

    Cameron Yee Executive Producer
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    Supplying alkaline AAs with power hungry digital cameras has always been a head scratcher to me. It's not that I expect the camera manufacturer to supply rechargeables and a charger, but you can at least make an effort to educate people about their best options for power sources. I say better to not supply alkaline batteries at all and make it clear users need to buy NiMHS or some other rechargeable type.
     
  6. ManW_TheUncool

    ManW_TheUncool Producer

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    Maybe the camera makers are getting kickbacks from Duracell and Everready? [​IMG]

    But yeah, get the rechargeables. I wouldn't worry about shortened battery life w/ fast chargers as long as they are good, proven ones and don't kill the battery life way too quickly. Don't know about the newer, super-fast ones, but back when I was still using rechargeable AA's (for my age-old Nikon CP800), I used a fast charger that charges 1500mAH(?) NiMH's in 2-3 hours. IIRC, after the battery reaches ~90% charge capacity, the charger does a trickle charge to top it out, which takes like an extra hour or so just for the last 10%. The trickle charge keeps going to keep the battery topped out since the battery will lose that 10% very quickly while idle, if this is not done.

    Keeping the battery topped out like that does shorten battery life if done a whole lot, but in most people's experiences, it's not such a drastic thing where the losses outweigh the gains. You have to realize that NiMH's do lose their charge quite quickly when left idle. If not kept on the charger, they will probably drain down to 50% capacity w/in a couple weeks or less. Certainly, you shouldn't expect to use them for any shooting after a month left off the charger. This was why I decided to stop using them for my retired Canon G3's external flash unit -- Duracell Ultra's seem to work well enough for that w/out needing to worry about keeping the battery fresh. FWIW, Li-Ion works differently and don't have this kind of problem although it has some other kinds of its own.

    Don't know anything about that site, but I recommend this popular, proven dealer for rechargeables:

    http://www.thomas-distributing.com/

    And if you want to know more about batteries in general, you might want to check out www.batteryuniversity.com.

    _Man_
     
  7. Jay H

    Jay H Producer

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    FYI, back when I got my first digital camera, a Kodak DC280 (2.1MP) they came with I think 1600mAH Kodak-brand AA batteries and a small simply charger with it. They were certainly thinking ahead! [​IMG]



    I've ordered from Batteryspace before, there is a 5% coupon that you can use, I can't think of it now but do a google on batteryspace and coupon and you should be able to find it.



    That charger should work fine. I got a package deal with the BC1HU which will recharge all the standard battery sizes.



    Jay
     

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