Learn more about Camera Batteries
Most cameras run on batteries. However, every camera – even on the consumer level – can have different camera batteries. There is no such battery that will be able to run on every camera. So, it is important to learn about the camera batteries before you make a purchase.
While the consumer-level cameras will be running on batteries, some of the higher-end production cameras will be running on camera battery packs – which can supply a lot more power than a regular camera battery. Most of the consumers don’t need these battery packs – and most cameras won’t support it either. Because of this, you might need to buy multiple rechargeable batteries – depending on your needs.
Types of Camera Batteries
Just like there are different cameras from different camera manufacturers, we also have different types of camera batteries. Camera batteries differ in shape, size as well as form factor – depending on the camera it is made for. Not only the physical appearance but the technical properties of these batteries also differ. So, let’s just take a brief look at the different types of camera batteries available in the market.
Lithium-Ion batteries are one of the most commonly found batteries for any camera. Even a battery pack for a bigger production camera can use lithium batteries – as they are the most efficient batteries available in the market.
The rechargeable lithium batteries are used in most DSLRs as well as Mirrorless Cameras. They are small, lightweight, and can provide more battery life than most other camera batteries. Not only that but they can withstand extreme temperatures in a better way than most other batteries -and can also recharge quickly.
Nickel-Metal Hydride Batteries
Nickel-Metal Hydride batteries – also known as NiMH batteries – are also a type of rechargeable battery. While lithium-ion batteries are can last you longer, they also cost quite a bit more. The NiMH batteries – on the other hand – are less expensive and also have faster recharge times. So, if you need multiple batteries for a shoot, these might serve you well.
As the name suggests, this is not a rechargeable battery. Also, you won’t be able to use such batteries on a DSLR or a Mirrorless Camera. However, several Film Cameras still use disposable batteries to receive power.
With the disposable batteries, you can’t just run out of power on a shoot as they are pretty cheap, and you can carry quite a few in your camera bag. As they are mainly found on film cameras, don’t forget to carry more films as well.
Again, these are not rechargeable batteries. Also, as the name suggests, they aren’t even real batteries – and they don’t hold any charge by themselves. These batteries can be helpful when you are planning to use the camera for a longer period of time as they will run directly by an external power supply.
The dummy batteries will not only allow the camera to stay on for a longer period of time – but it will also reduce the heating issues. When a real battery is inside the camera body, the camera body and the battery can both heat up – causing the overall temperature to be higher. However, when a dummy battery is used, the battery won’t really heat up as no chemical reactions are going on in the battery. This helps to keep the camera temperatures lower while running for a long time.
Are third-party batteries worth it?
Different cameras can have different batteries. However, a similar battery can also be manufactured by a third-party battery manufacturer. However, there are a few things that you need to keep in mind while buying third-party batteries.
This is one of the most important things to look after while purchasing a third-party battery pack. Not all third-party batteries are compatible with the camera you own. So, to check the compatibility, you will first have to see what battery type is being used by your camera. You’ll then need to find the same battery – from other manufacturers.
When you are looking at third-party batteries, it is essential for you to research a brand – as not all brands have good batteries. However, in our store, we carry one of the most popular and renowned third-party battery manufacturers – Wasabi Power – alongside several other first-party batteries. So, you won’t have to worry much here.
The efficiency of a battery that cameras are initially shipped with will almost always be higher than any third-party battery. However, this is not to say that the third-party batteries won’t give you enough power. They definitely can provide you with enough power – but sometimes, it might just be 10-20% less than what the original battery would. It’s not a big deal – especially when we will look at the final factor – which will decide if the third-party camera batteries are worth it or not.
The final factor that will decide the worth of a third-party battery – is the price. The prices for a first-party camera battery are typically quite a bit on the higher side. The third-party camera batteries on the other hand will cost you half – or sometimes even lesser – than what a first-party camera battery costs. So, while the efficiency might be slightly lower, the price makes it up for that - and puts the third-party battery at an advantage.
Overall, if you need to have multiple batteries for longer shoots, the third-party batteries from reputed brands – can be worth it. However, if you are not shooting for a longer period and just need one additional battery to have as a backup, you can still go for a first-party battery.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
We want to make your purchase decision about the camera batteries easier. Hence, we have prepared answers to some of the most frequently asked questions here.
What batteries do cameras use?
At the consumer level, most of the DSLRs and Mirrorless Cameras use lithium-ion batteries. However, some also have support NiMH batteries as well as dummy batteries. The film cameras usually don’t use these types of batteries and just take up a disposable battery.
For the bigger video production cameras, they can be running on huge battery packs or might also be connected to a power source directly – meaning they won’t need any battery power. In short, every camera uses a different battery – which cannot just be different in the battery technology – but can also be different in shape and size.
Which type of battery is best recommended for use in a digital camera?
For consumer-level digital cameras, it is highly recommended to use lithium-ion batteries as they are proven to work for a long time. And as these batteries don’t lose their charge quickly these days, one can easily use them for a few years – which is great.
NiMH batteries and dummy batteries are other good options out there. And if you are planning to shoot for a longer period with your camera, then we would recommend you using a dummy battery – especially if you have a power source nearby.
How long does a camera battery last?
The exact lifespan of a camera battery will be dependant on your usage. However, most camera batteries can easily last you for two to three years – with medium usage. We do recommend you to change the battery after three years as the older batteries aren’t always the safest option – especially with all the expensive camera equipment you already own.
Are dummy batteries better than regular lithium-ion batteries?
Yes – and – No.
Dummy batteries can be great if you are near a power outlet and want to run your camera for a long period of time – whether it is to shoot photos or a video. As they can last until you keep them plugged in while also keeping the temperatures low, they are pretty great for such use cases.
However, if you don’t have any nearby power outlet or if you lose the power supply, your camera will immediately stop working. This can also result in the loss of information that was already shot. So, in such circumstances, one should rather have a normal lithium-ion battery.
Both have their own pros and cons. So, you will have to decide which one would be a better option for your usage.
Can I charge multiple camera batteries at once?
Yes. You can definitely charge multiple batteries at once. However, to make this happen, you will need a charger that supports charging multiple batteries. Such chargers are available from the original camera manufacturer as well as a third-party battery manufacturer.
Can I leave the battery in my camera?
If you are using your camera regularly, you can surely leave the battery inside your camera. However, if you don’t plan to shoot for months – you should definitely remove the battery from your camera. While the newer battery tech won’t get damaged even if you put it inside the camera for months, it is still recommended to have it out of the camera when you aren’t going to use the camera for a long time.
What brands do you carry?
For camera batteries, we carry Blackmagic, GoPro, Leica, Sony, and Wasabi Power. This means we have got you covered for the batteries from any of these brands.
When we first pick up a camera, it already comes equipped with one battery. However, when we start looking in the market to buy an additional battery, we see the availability of several options – and that can sometimes be confusing. But we hope that this article would have helped you out in selecting a camera battery. If you are still confused or need any help, just get in touch with one of our Gear Guides as they will be really happy to help you out.