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Old 05-30-2010   #11
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Default Re: High capacity AA batteries for weddings

Syl Arena at pixsylated.com is currently running a test of dozens of different AA brands and should have final results in a week or two. Already has had some interesting findings.
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Old 05-31-2010   #12
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Default Re: High capacity AA batteries for weddings

I have not really done much testing however I started with the 2500+mAh Duracell and Energizer batteries, however they discharge quickly and also heat up a lot during quick flash shooting.

The Sanyo Eneloop batteries are only 2000mAh, however I am still able to shoot in around 300+ shots with them in a dark night club, and guess what, they do not heat up as much hence keeps the flash cooler as a result.

Note sure how fast a recycle you need but on the SB800 it has a 5th battery option that speeds it up by about 1 sec or so.
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Old 09-06-2010   #13
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Default Re: High capacity AA batteries for weddings

I have just ordered 8 Powerex batteries! Thanks for the info!
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Old 08-03-2014   #14
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Default Re: High capacity AA batteries for weddings

I find little difference between major brands. Some professional friends recommend Eneloop batteries. What has caused me problems in the past is the one battery in a group of 4 that develops a defect. So now I depend on a charger that checks each individual battery and has lots of functions:
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Old 08-03-2014   #15
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Default Re: High capacity AA batteries for weddings

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Originally Posted by Eero Makela View Post
Is what, they do not heat up as much hence keeps the flash cooler as a result.

Note sure how fast a recycle you need but on the SB800 it has a 5th battery option that speeds it up by about 1 sec or so.
Re the 5th battery on the Nikon SB800 - I am now very cautious as I found that adding another battery means adding something else that can go wrong. This happened to me when using 5 batteries on the SB 800. Just one was defective and it slowed down everything and made me lose some shots. I had to change all of them as you cannot tell which one is defective when you are out working.
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Old 08-03-2014   #16
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Default Re: High capacity AA batteries for weddings

Maybe it's me, but I still find my. Metz 60 series in auto ( not titl, of course) nails exposure well enough. Not to mention zippy recycle times. Add a stroboframe and a diffuses or and it's quite workable, even if it's "old school".
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Old 09-08-2014   #17
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Originally Posted by nasoj21 View Post
Eneloop's from sanyo. They are only 2000mah
My Eneloops are 2450, got then 3 weeks ago.
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Old 09-08-2014   #18
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Default Re: High capacity AA batteries for weddings

Now, choice of batteries depends on needs. Are you a professional that needs maximum number of pops from a single charge or are you the kind that takes 50-100 shots, puts the flash in the closet for a month then out again for a few more shots?

If you need maximum # of shots from a single charge, you need batteries with high mAh ratings... real ones, not marketing fluf. For this, I have yet to find a battery better than the PowerEx 2700 mAh. I buy batteries in big lots (like 48 or 60) at a time because I own more flashes and I own external battery packs and as a wedding photographer, I need 2 times more than what I really need because I cannot afford to miss moments because batteries die. They also give me more pops per single charge than any other battery on the market.

That said, they *must* be recharged preferably the evening before the event and after the event. Using an intelligent charger (which is a MUST, IMHO), they will easily last you 3 years (mine lasted 3.5 years).

Eneloop batteries are nice... they hold a charge longer, but the amount they hold is less. You can charge them up a week before an event and they will perform similarly to recharging them a day before the event... but they give you fewer pops per single charge than the PowerEx.

I could use Eneloops in my PW ControlTL units, a higher mAh is not needed there, but they just barely last me a full wedding day before dying out. PowerEx batteries last me 3 wedding days on a single charge.

In either case, you want an intelligent charger that is not going to bake your batteries burning them out and shortening their lifespan drastically. Using one of those Energizer quick rechargers, your batteries will last (if you are lucky) about 10 months before starting to degrade. That's a big difference over the 3 years I get out of my PowerEx using one of my 2 MAHA C-808 intelligent chargers.

If you want the best of both worlds and are willing to accept about a 20% drop in total pops per single charge, you can go the EneLoop XXX (rated at 2500mAh), however, they are about 50% more expensive than the PowerEx 2700 batteries.

For me, there is no reason to purchase anything but PowerEx 2700 mAh batteries, they are a proven product that has never let me down, as well as the MAHA chargers... they make a great team.

BTW, a small point that doesn't matter to me... at full power pops, Eneloop batteries recycle the flashes faster than the Li-On batteries. I say it makes no difference to me because:
1 - if I need full power pops, I use an external powerpack, it recycles the flashes faster than the eneloop by far and triples # of pops per single charge.
2 - I don't normally use full power shooting in the dark, but again, given no choice, I can go the external powerpack route or.. what I do more often, I prefer stronger flashes or studio strobes or I quad up on the flashes to cover a larger area or give me 2 stops over a single full power flash.

Final point... I have yet to test any PowerEx battery and have it give me less than rated power, even after 3 years of use. When new, after about 10 recycles, they measure out to 2850-2875 mAh. Doing the same thing with EneLoop, they are never "as advertised", often being close, but always under their mAh rating.

Finally... best place to purchase MAHA chargers and PowerEx batteries... www.thomasdistributing.com ... good customer service and are a well known and established business.
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Old 09-10-2014   #19
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Default Re: High capacity AA batteries for weddings

I use disposable batteries, costco brand for those rare occasions when I am shooting something important with flash. They always work and they are cheap.

I grew tired of the ordeal of managing the charge/discharge cycle of the rechargeable types. Not worth the effort.

I do not plan to remarry for many of the same reasons.
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Old 09-10-2014   #20
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Default Re: High capacity AA batteries for weddings

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Originally Posted by Lens Pirate View Post
I use disposable batteries, costco brand for those rare occasions when I am shooting something important with flash. They always work and they are cheap.

I grew tired of the ordeal of managing the charge/discharge cycle of the rechargeable types. Not worth the effort.

I do not plan to remarry for many of the same reasons.
I don't know what marriage has to do with batteries, but I will share an opinion. I am NOT judging anyone's actions, I am sharing an opinion.

Fact #1 - Good quality rechargeable batteries will consistently outlast those cheap disposable Costco batteries per single charge.

Fact #2 - Good quality rechargeable batteries last years, paying for themselves hundreds of times over.

Fact#3 - Using rechargeable batteries saves you money if you plan to use more than a few photo sessions over a 3 year period.

Fact #4 - Rechargeable batteries are better for the environment. Can you imagine if I did this? I would have to dump 48-60 batteries out per week to the local environmental disposal area (and then there are the people who stupidly just dump the batteries in their trash, leaving it to degrade the environment without a single care)! Yes, I shoot enough to need to recharge4 48-60 AA batteries per week approximately 40-45 weeks per year.

Fact #5 - It takes me 15 seconds to place 16 batteries into two chargers, 8 seconds to pull them out. That is less time and gas than it would take to drive to the Costco (which is less than 1 km from my home). That is a lot of saved effort, saved time, saved money and saved gas.

My point? What some people think is a good idea (often in the name of laziness or cheapness), often times is not.

Now, if you only shoot a couple times of year, and dispose of the batteries properly, sure, I can see not using rechargeable batteries... but short of that, not only is it not responsible... it's tossing out good money for nothing... all because it is too much effort to charge up the batteries.


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