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Panasonic AVCCAM Camcorders
AVCHD for pro applications: AG-AC160, AC130 and other AVCCAM gear.


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Old May 20th, 2013, 02:10 PM   #1
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aftermarket batteries

Probably been asked a bit before but has anyone tried any of the vbg6 cheap batteries such as these?

digitalmediastore: Panasonic VW-VBG6 compatible rechargeable battery from Dot.Foto

Seems too good to be true. I have a mixture of batteries for my AC160's and they all seem to last similar times. I have genuine panasonic, swit, IDX and Hahnel. They all work fine and charge with teh original panasonic charger.
I need at least a couple more batts so I can handle 2 jobs on consecutive days etc. There seem to be so many available. I'm tempted by the cheap ones but at the same time dont want to waste money.

Thanks,

Lee.
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Old May 20th, 2013, 09:41 PM   #2
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Re: aftermarket batteries

Hi Lee

I had 4 VB6 batteries for my AC-130's and they work fine BUT (see the big BUT) there are two issues to be aware of :
Firstly the battery might not initally communicate with the camera ..easy solution just turn the cam off and back on again a few times if you get "This battery cannot be used" message...it takes a few tries before the cam recognises the chip in the battery

Secondly ..the aftermarkets will show a time remaining of around 260 minutes ...however once it gets down to under 100 minutes it drops drastically and dies so I only used mine for non-critical events like wedding reception dancing where if a battery fails it's no big deal .... things like wedding ceremonies always needed genuine Panny batteries

They are useful to have in your bag and can save you and at around $30 are worth having

Chris
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Old May 20th, 2013, 11:13 PM   #3
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Re: aftermarket batteries

Agree with Chris. I've been burned before by grabbing the aftermarket batteries during a critical event. The time remaining is NOT accurate and therefore should only be used as backup - on the ones I have, 26 minutes usually means "dead." However, they're great for an emergency battery to keep in your bag or for things like monitors. Since I consider all my work mission critical, I plan on bringing enough genuine Panasonic brand batteries to last the entire shoot, only delving into the aftermarket spares if things get hairy.
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Old May 21st, 2013, 04:24 AM   #4
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Re: aftermarket batteries

Thanks guys.

I do find that the ones I have are all pretty similar in performance time and pretty accurate so might stick with those brands etc. Do you know of any rapid/quicker chargers for the batteries?

Cheers,

Lee.
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Old May 21st, 2013, 12:29 PM   #5
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Re: aftermarket batteries

I'd be interested in a charger too, if it doesn't break the bank.

I've gone with the Panasonic batteries. 150 each, it's eye watering. My batteries cost more than most peoples cameras do! But I got the collywobbles when I started worrying about losing filming with 3rd party batteries.
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Last edited by Mike Beckett; May 22nd, 2013 at 01:29 AM. Reason: iPad typo
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Old May 21st, 2013, 11:22 PM   #6
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Re: aftermarket batteries

I purchased an after market battery for my TM 900. So far no complaints, it has twice the capacity of the original and only cost ~ $20.
The TM 900 can be used on an external power supply such as the one supplied. It is also possible to make up a lead connected to battery that can supply the required 1.2 amps at 9.3 volts. As the camera battery is left in place there is no problem as to whether or not the camera will recognize the secondary battery. Adjustable voltage regulators such as the LM317T are around $2 and with a few other components can be set to deliver the 9.3 volts from a supply of 11 volts or more. A 7 ah sealed lead acid battery at ~ $20 should be set to run a TM 900 for about 4 or 5 times as long as the standard battery. An advantage is that if the camera is turned off its battery will be charged by the secondary battery. The disadvantage is the 7 ah SLA battery is hefty and bulky but if like me you spend a lot of time with the camera running while waiting for things to happen this is a minor inconvenience.
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Old May 21st, 2013, 11:37 PM   #7
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Re: aftermarket batteries

Hi Alastair

I made up a much more portable package when I had my Panny's and it worked very well too. Instead of using heavy lead acid packs you can get rather neat 9900mah 12v CCTV batteries on ebay ..Just add a voltage regulator board ...My HMC's needed 8.3 volts into the external power and yes it bypasses the battery chip circuitry too ... The Li-Ion packs are tiny and light and I put mine in a plastic box from JayCar Electronics and with a simple clamp it fitted under the camera tripod mount neatly. When to get the battery it also comes with a charger and no 2nd battery is needed. If you search eBay for "12V CCTV battery" you will find them ... They are also great for running my LCD on my Stedicam sled (I only use the 1800mah there) I have also used them to run big LED lights too and they are awesome!!

Chris
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