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"AAA", alkaline and NiMh

 
 
Don Mudd
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      08-21-2005
I got a small 4 megapixels digicam with no optical zoom and fixed focus
lenses. The camera weigths only 100g so I use it as an anywhere-I-go camera.
It is powered by two "AAA" to keep down the size and weight.

So I put two fresh alkalines (the premium type...) and I could hardly
shoot... 10 pictures before the camera warned me for low battery. Dear God!
I then pessimisticly tried two freshly recharged 850mA NiMh as recommended
by the user's manual and the salesmen.
HUGE difference !I could easily take... over 100 pictures, a few 30 second
videos along with some menus digging and pictures reviewing. And the
batteries are in their first cycle!!
I knew NiMh have a longer autonomy but that much... It seems to me that the
difference between NiMh and alkaline is even greater with "AAA" than with
"AA".



 
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MarkČ
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      08-21-2005

"Don Mudd" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news27Oe.19564$(E-Mail Removed)...
>I got a small 4 megapixels digicam with no optical zoom and fixed focus
>lenses. The camera weigths only 100g so I use it as an anywhere-I-go
>camera. It is powered by two "AAA" to keep down the size and weight.
>
> So I put two fresh alkalines (the premium type...) and I could hardly
> shoot... 10 pictures before the camera warned me for low battery. Dear
> God!
> I then pessimisticly tried two freshly recharged 850mA NiMh as recommended
> by the user's manual and the salesmen.
> HUGE difference !I could easily take... over 100 pictures, a few 30 second
> videos along with some menus digging and pictures reviewing. And the
> batteries are in their first cycle!!
> I knew NiMh have a longer autonomy but that much... It seems to me that
> the difference between NiMh and alkaline is even greater with "AAA" than
> with "AA".


You will get significantly better performance with NiMh batteries, provided
you don't let them sit for weeks un-used. They are far better performers
when kept fully charged. Alkaline's only real benefit is shelf-life, and
availability in a pinch (for when you can't charge your NiMh batteries.

Honestly though, AAA batteries are so tiny, that I can't see the wisdom in
designing a camera around them... Surely the exrtra size would be
minimal compared with the far better power numbers offered by AA... But
there you go... You'll be pleasantly surprised by NiMh.

Mark


 
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John Bean
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      08-21-2005
On Sun, 21 Aug 2005 15:20:41 -0700, "MarkČ" <mjmorgan(lowest
even number here)@cox..net> wrote:
>Honestly though, AAA batteries are so tiny, that I can't see the wisdom in
>designing a camera around them... Surely the exrtra size would be
>minimal compared with the far better power numbers offered by AA...


If my Sony U30 had AA batteries there'd be no space left in
the case for the camera. Some cameras are *small*

--
Regards

John Bean
 
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MarkČ
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      08-21-2005

"John Bean" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:(E-Mail Removed)...
> On Sun, 21 Aug 2005 15:20:41 -0700, "MarkČ" <mjmorgan(lowest
> even number here)@cox..net> wrote:
>>Honestly though, AAA batteries are so tiny, that I can't see the wisdom in
>>designing a camera around them... Surely the exrtra size would be
>>minimal compared with the far better power numbers offered by AA...

>
> If my Sony U30 had AA batteries there'd be no space left in
> the case for the camera. Some cameras are *small*


Ya, but I wasn't talking about toy cameras...



 
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Don Mudd
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      08-21-2005

"MarkČ" <mjmorgan(lowest even number here)@cox..net> wrote in message
news67Oe.6270$Us5.4018@fed1read02...
>
> "Don Mudd" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
> news27Oe.19564$(E-Mail Removed)...
>>I got a small 4 megapixels digicam with no optical zoom and fixed focus
>>lenses. The camera weigths only 100g so I use it as an anywhere-I-go
>>camera. It is powered by two "AAA" to keep down the size and weight.
>>
>> So I put two fresh alkalines (the premium type...) and I could hardly
>> shoot... 10 pictures before the camera warned me for low battery. Dear
>> God!
>> I then pessimisticly tried two freshly recharged 850mA NiMh as
>> recommended by the user's manual and the salesmen.
>> HUGE difference !I could easily take... over 100 pictures, a few 30
>> second videos along with some menus digging and pictures reviewing. And
>> the batteries are in their first cycle!!
>> I knew NiMh have a longer autonomy but that much... It seems to me that
>> the difference between NiMh and alkaline is even greater with "AAA" than
>> with "AA".

>
> You will get significantly better performance with NiMh batteries,
> provided you don't let them sit for weeks un-used. They are far better
> performers when kept fully charged. Alkaline's only real benefit is
> shelf-life, and availability in a pinch (for when you can't charge your
> NiMh batteries.
>
> Honestly though, AAA batteries are so tiny, that I can't see the wisdom in
> designing a camera around them...


I think it is relative to the current consumption of the camera, its overall
design and the available features. No zoom and no auto focus along with a
smaller LCD surely draw less power out of the batteries. Friends of mine
with bigger cameras using "AA" cannot take much more than a hundred of
pictures per charge, some even less, some more...

Don

> Surely the exrtra size would be minimal compared with the far better power
> numbers offered by AA... But there you go... You'll be pleasantly
> surprised by NiMh.
>
> Mark
>



 
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MarkČ
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      08-21-2005

"Don Mudd" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:4O7Oe.7147$(E-Mail Removed)...
>
> "MarkČ" <mjmorgan(lowest even number here)@cox..net> wrote in message
> news67Oe.6270$Us5.4018@fed1read02...
>>
>> "Don Mudd" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
>> news27Oe.19564$(E-Mail Removed)...
>>>I got a small 4 megapixels digicam with no optical zoom and fixed focus
>>>lenses. The camera weigths only 100g so I use it as an anywhere-I-go
>>>camera. It is powered by two "AAA" to keep down the size and weight.
>>>
>>> So I put two fresh alkalines (the premium type...) and I could hardly
>>> shoot... 10 pictures before the camera warned me for low battery. Dear
>>> God!
>>> I then pessimisticly tried two freshly recharged 850mA NiMh as
>>> recommended by the user's manual and the salesmen.
>>> HUGE difference !I could easily take... over 100 pictures, a few 30
>>> second videos along with some menus digging and pictures reviewing. And
>>> the batteries are in their first cycle!!
>>> I knew NiMh have a longer autonomy but that much... It seems to me that
>>> the difference between NiMh and alkaline is even greater with "AAA" than
>>> with "AA".

>>
>> You will get significantly better performance with NiMh batteries,
>> provided you don't let them sit for weeks un-used. They are far better
>> performers when kept fully charged. Alkaline's only real benefit is
>> shelf-life, and availability in a pinch (for when you can't charge your
>> NiMh batteries.
>>
>> Honestly though, AAA batteries are so tiny, that I can't see the wisdom
>> in designing a camera around them...

>
> I think it is relative to the current consumption of the camera, its
> overall design and the available features. No zoom and no auto focus along
> with a smaller LCD surely draw less power out of the batteries. Friends of
> mine with bigger cameras using "AA" cannot take much more than a hundred
> of pictures per charge, some even less, some more...
>
> Don


Yes. Most people don't shoot digital camera with none of the above.
If you do, then more "power" to ya! (yuk-yuk-yuk...batam-TING!)



 
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ASAAR
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      08-22-2005
On Mon, 22 Aug 2005 02:08:54 GMT, MarkH wrote:

> AAA Alkaline cells are very small and yet perform well, unless you try to
> use them in a high drain device. They work well in remote controls and
> small torches, they are not really suitable for digital cameras though.


The aren't suitable for most digital cameras. But there's no
reason why they wouldn't work exceedingly well in low drain digital
cameras. There are a number of them that are fixed focus, and it
should be possible to have cameras using AAA cells that can take
many hundreds of shots per set of batteries.


> If you need some emergency batteries with a long shelf life then get some
> lithium cells, otherwise just stick to the NiMH cells.


Lithiums are the best, but they aren't especially economical.
Alkalines have about 1/2 the shelf life which amounts to about 8
years. That should be more than adequate for most people.


> On www.dpreview.com there are some cameras that can take over
> 500 shots on 4 x AA cells, but that would add too much weight and
> bulk to a small camera.


My camera uses 4 AA cells (a Fuji) and could probably take 1000
shots if the flash isn't used. When the flash is used it can take
over 200 shots. With Fuji's newest sensor, the same exposures could
be made with a flash that uses less than 1/2 the battery power
needed by current models. This would allow nearly 500 shots per set
of AAAs. Replace them with AAA cells and you're still above 200
shots. And put them in a camera that has no mechanical zoom and the
number of available shots can only go up. And of course it they're
replaced by NiMH AAA batteries, the number of shots nearly doubles
again.

 
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MarkH
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      08-22-2005
"Don Mudd" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in
news27Oe.19564$(E-Mail Removed):

> I got a small 4 megapixels digicam with no optical zoom and fixed
> focus lenses. The camera weigths only 100g so I use it as an
> anywhere-I-go camera. It is powered by two "AAA" to keep down the size
> and weight.
>
> So I put two fresh alkalines (the premium type...) and I could hardly
> shoot... 10 pictures before the camera warned me for low battery. Dear
> God! I then pessimisticly tried two freshly recharged 850mA NiMh as
> recommended by the user's manual and the salesmen.
> HUGE difference !I could easily take... over 100 pictures, a few 30
> second videos along with some menus digging and pictures reviewing.
> And the batteries are in their first cycle!!
> I knew NiMh have a longer autonomy but that much... It seems to me
> that the difference between NiMh and alkaline is even greater with
> "AAA" than with "AA".


AAA Alkaline cells are very small and yet perform well, unless you try to
use them in a high drain device. They work well in remote controls and
small torches, they are not really suitable for digital cameras though.

If you need some emergency batteries with a long shelf life then get some
lithium cells, otherwise just stick to the NiMH cells.

On www.dpreview.com there are some cameras that can take over 500 shots on
4 x AA cells, but that would add too much weight and bulk to a small
camera.


--
Mark Heyes (New Zealand)
See my pics at www.gigatech.co.nz (last updated 16-August-05)
"There are 10 types of people, those that
understand binary and those that don't"

 
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SimonLW
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      08-22-2005
"Don Mudd" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news27Oe.19564$(E-Mail Removed)...
> I got a small 4 megapixels digicam with no optical zoom and fixed focus
> lenses. The camera weigths only 100g so I use it as an anywhere-I-go

camera.
> It is powered by two "AAA" to keep down the size and weight.
>
> So I put two fresh alkalines (the premium type...) and I could hardly
> shoot... 10 pictures before the camera warned me for low battery. Dear

God!
> I then pessimisticly tried two freshly recharged 850mA NiMh as recommended
> by the user's manual and the salesmen.
> HUGE difference !I could easily take... over 100 pictures, a few 30 second
> videos along with some menus digging and pictures reviewing. And the
> batteries are in their first cycle!!
> I knew NiMh have a longer autonomy but that much... It seems to me that

the
> difference between NiMh and alkaline is even greater with "AAA" than with
> "AA".
>
>
>

As others have said, The Alkaline battery does not handle high current loads
well. In fact. after removing the ones that seem to be run down from the
camera and put it in another device, such as a remote control, they will
continue to have a full life. No sense in wasting them.

As the digital camera manufacturers improve the power performance of their
cameras, we may see a trend of more conventional power sources being used
(AA, AAA batteries) instead of the Li-ion batteries that are often
proprietary, expensive (especially if you want a backup battery) and seem to
lose capacity after two or three years.
-S


 
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SimonLW
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      08-22-2005
"Don Mudd" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news27Oe.19564$(E-Mail Removed)...
> I got a small 4 megapixels digicam with no optical zoom and fixed focus
> lenses. The camera weigths only 100g so I use it as an anywhere-I-go

camera.
> It is powered by two "AAA" to keep down the size and weight.
>
> So I put two fresh alkalines (the premium type...) and I could hardly
> shoot... 10 pictures before the camera warned me for low battery. Dear

God!
> I then pessimisticly tried two freshly recharged 850mA NiMh as recommended
> by the user's manual and the salesmen.
> HUGE difference !I could easily take... over 100 pictures, a few 30 second
> videos along with some menus digging and pictures reviewing. And the
> batteries are in their first cycle!!
> I knew NiMh have a longer autonomy but that much... It seems to me that

the
> difference between NiMh and alkaline is even greater with "AAA" than with
> "AA".
>
>
>

As others have said, The Alkaline battery does not handle high current loads
well. In fact. after removing the ones that seem to be run down from the
camera and put it in another device, such as a remote control, they will
continue to have a full life. No sense in wasting them.

As the digital camera manufacturers improve the power performance of their
cameras, we may see a trend of more conventional power sources being used
(AA, AAA batteries) instead of the Li-ion batteries that are often
proprietary, expensive (especially if you want a backup battery) and seem to
lose capacity after two or three years.
-S


 
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