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Canon EOS Crop Sensor for HD
APS-C sensor cameras including the 80D, 70D, 7D Mk. II, 7D, EOS M and Rebel models for HD video recording.


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Old August 21st, 2010, 11:06 AM   #1
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2-day timelapse without AC power. Possible?

I'm wondering if I can film a timelapse that lasts 2-days with my Canon t2i without access to AC power.

How long can it run in photo mode with a battery grip? Is there a way to battery power the camera that is beyond the power the battery grip provides?

Thanks!
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Old August 21st, 2010, 12:01 PM   #2
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I get about 50-60 mins of open shutter time with one battery (eg. I can get over 700 JPEG images with 5 sec. long shutter exposures). It has less to do with the timer interval, and more with how long you have the shutter open because then the CMOS is powered up and taking in light. A battery grip holds two batteries so I expect you'll get double the time. It might not be enough power for two days however.

Switronix recently released their new PowerBase 70, but it only powers the Canon 7D and 5Dmk2 at the moment. Unknown when they will release one for the T2i/550D. It supposedly gives 6x the battery life.

If you are a bit of a DIYer, you can build your own, and there would be no limit on the number of batteries you can add to your system. First you'll need an adapter like this: ACK-E8 Power Adapter Canon. Second, buy some Li-ion batteries from places like Batteryjunction, place them in series or parallel to get you up to 7.4 v and the maH capacity you need (for two days I'd say about 8000 maH) and enclose it in some sort of weatherproof box. Strip the adapter cables and wire it up with your battery array. You'll be good to go.
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Old August 21st, 2010, 12:49 PM   #3
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Ian,
Thanks for your reply. That is very helpful info.
So, in your example, the camera was actually capturing images for around an hour. How much does standby drain battery life? Is this a minimual drain?
(Excuse the newbie question... I'm used to using these cameras in video mode only.)
Thanks!
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Old August 21st, 2010, 01:02 PM   #4
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Standby power drains very little; it wouldn't be something I would worry about. For great looking time lapses, you want your shutter speed to be half of your interval time. For instance, for an interval of 5 seconds, ideally you want your shutter to be open for 2.5 seconds. You can shoot about 1,440 frames of 2.5 seconds each on a single battery. (2.5 x 1,440 = 3,600 seconds (or 60 minutes)). This is only a very rough guide, and your results may be different.

The 60 minute run time applies to only when the camera's shutter is open and the CMOS is capturing light. The interval time between shutter clicks can be any length of time, and this will not affect your battery life too much.
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