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CIPA Test for battery life in Canon cameras

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June 19, 2005 4:05:54 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

Hi all,
I have just purchased a Canon A520, and I'm pretty satisfied except for
battery life.

Canon claims 300 shots with NiMH 2000mah batteries under standard test
condition (more or less like CIPA conditions, move lenses forth and
back, switch off the camera every 4 shots, etc.).

Well, I patiently ran the test (and also kept the flash light off!), but
after 120 shots the batteries were exhausted! Well, 120 shot is a bit
different from 300.....

How do you comment on this? Can this depend on the (cheap) 512mb MMC
card I'm using?
Did anyone with the same camera notice the same problem?

Thanks,bye,
Aldo
Anonymous
June 19, 2005 4:05:55 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

On Sun, 19 Jun 2005 12:05:54 GMT, Hal <hal@somewhere.net> wrote:

>Hi all,
>I have just purchased a Canon A520, and I'm pretty satisfied except for
>battery life.
>
>Canon claims 300 shots with NiMH 2000mah batteries under standard test
>condition (more or less like CIPA conditions, move lenses forth and
>back, switch off the camera every 4 shots, etc.).
>
>Well, I patiently ran the test (and also kept the flash light off!), but
>after 120 shots the batteries were exhausted! Well, 120 shot is a bit
>different from 300.....
>
>How do you comment on this? Can this depend on the (cheap) 512mb MMC
>card I'm using?
>Did anyone with the same camera notice the same problem?
>
>Thanks,bye,
>Aldo

Try the test again after a few weeks.
It often (usually) takes rechargable batteries several use/recharge
cycles to reach maximum charge capability.

--
Bill Funk
replace "g" with "a"
Anonymous
June 19, 2005 7:26:37 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

On Sun, 19 Jun 2005 12:05:54 GMT, Hal <hal@somewhere.net> wrote:

>Hi all,
>I have just purchased a Canon A520, and I'm pretty satisfied except for
>battery life.
>
>Canon claims 300 shots with NiMH 2000mah batteries under standard test
>condition (more or less like CIPA conditions, move lenses forth and
>back, switch off the camera every 4 shots, etc.).
>
>Well, I patiently ran the test (and also kept the flash light off!), but
>after 120 shots the batteries were exhausted! Well, 120 shot is a bit
>different from 300.....
>
>How do you comment on this? Can this depend on the (cheap) 512mb MMC
>card I'm using?
>Did anyone with the same camera notice the same problem?

In my A60 I do get fewer pics in one battery charge when I use the
cheap 128MB CF instead of my other card, a 40x Transcend CF. The
cheap card will be hotter if I remove it, too - I suspect it uses
more power and the extra power leads to this heat build-up and
shorter battery-life.
Related resources
June 19, 2005 10:35:46 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

>
> Try the test again after a few weeks.
> It often (usually) takes rechargable batteries several use/recharge
> cycles to reach maximum charge capability.
>

Yes, I'll try. But if you were right would it mean that my 2500mah
batteries get charged only at about 40% at present? (I mean...my 120
shots vs the 300 shots indicated by canon).
Anonymous
June 19, 2005 10:35:47 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

On Sun, 19 Jun 2005 18:35:46 GMT, Hal wrote:

> Yes, I'll try. But if you were right would it mean that my 2500mah
> batteries get charged only at about 40% at present? (I mean...my 120
> shots vs the 300 shots indicated by canon).

Not necessarily. It could be that the MMC card does use
significantly more power than SD cards, although I tend to doubt
that it would make much more than a very slight difference. It
could be that one of the two NiMH cells is defective. Do you use a
charger that shows when each cell finishes charging? High capacity
cells in one of my chargers takes about 70 minutes to fully charge.
A weak or damaged cell might take less than 30 minutes to charge.
If I used a cheaper charger that had only a single indicator to show
when charging finished, I'd have no clue that any cell was weaker
than the best one being charged. When were the NiMH cells last
charged? A day before using them? Two weeks? A month? Were any
power-wasting modes enabled, such as continuous focusing?

A good, inexpensive test would be to try the equivalent of the
CIPA test using a pair of fresh alkaline AA batteries. If your A520
is typical of the recent cameras on the market, it should take about
1/2 the number of pictures that NiMH allows. Your manual might also
mention expected battery life using alkalines. My camera's manual
states that using CIPA procedures, it should take 200 shots using
alkalines and 400 using NiMH. I tried duplicating the test using
alkalines and got just a bit more than the claimed 200 shots out of
the alkalines. But continuing the test without using the flash from
that point, the alkalines were able to take another 400 shots. The
camera uses xD cards, which *may* require much less battery power
than older technology, but I don't have any data that verifies that.
June 19, 2005 10:38:17 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

>
> In my A60 I do get fewer pics in one battery charge when I use the
> cheap 128MB CF instead of my other card, a 40x Transcend CF. The
> cheap card will be hotter if I remove it, too - I suspect it uses
> more power and the extra power leads to this heat build-up and
> shorter battery-life.

yes, seems reasonable. I will check with another card.

But the difference between the 300 shots indicated by canon and my 120
shots means that my actual card consumes extra power corresponding to
180 shots(!).

Bye, thanks!
Aldo
Anonymous
June 19, 2005 11:53:20 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

On Sun, 19 Jun 2005 18:35:46 GMT, Hal <hal@somewhere.net> wrote:

>>
>> Try the test again after a few weeks.
>> It often (usually) takes rechargable batteries several use/recharge
>> cycles to reach maximum charge capability.
>>
>
>Yes, I'll try. But if you were right would it mean that my 2500mah
>batteries get charged only at about 40% at present? (I mean...my 120
>shots vs the 300 shots indicated by canon).


ASAAR has some good points.
As well, remember the figures from Canon are chosen to put Canon's
product in the best light possible. As such, the figures Canon uses
may well not be what the average user can expect, but rather represent
a best case scenario.

--
Bill Funk
replace "g" with "a"
Anonymous
June 20, 2005 10:11:30 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

In article <6s4bb19guohtfb0o3ps6rte2eqn9tpu3hp@4ax.com>,
BigBill@there.com says...
> On Sun, 19 Jun 2005 12:05:54 GMT, Hal <hal@somewhere.net> wrote:
>
> >Hi all,
> >I have just purchased a Canon A520, and I'm pretty satisfied except for
> >battery life.
> >
> >Canon claims 300 shots with NiMH 2000mah batteries under standard test
> >condition (more or less like CIPA conditions, move lenses forth and
> >back, switch off the camera every 4 shots, etc.).
> >
> >Well, I patiently ran the test (and also kept the flash light off!), but
> >after 120 shots the batteries were exhausted! Well, 120 shot is a bit
> >different from 300.....
> >
> >How do you comment on this? Can this depend on the (cheap) 512mb MMC
> >card I'm using?
> >Did anyone with the same camera notice the same problem?
> >
> >Thanks,bye,
> >Aldo
>
> Try the test again after a few weeks.
> It often (usually) takes rechargable batteries several use/recharge
> cycles to reach maximum charge capability.
>

Yes, that is a biggie. A few other factors may be at work too.

1. The battery manufacturers have an incentive to report the best
possible results from their batteries. For example I get much better
results from my 2100 mah Fuji's than I get from my so-called "2500" mah
unknown name Chinese batteries.

2. Battery chargers also vary in their ability to reliably give a full
charge. For example, my cheap Chinese charger that came with the cheap
Chinese batteries sometimes cuts out one cell very early in the charge
cycle. If I re-insert the battery it will usually go to a full charge.

3. Cheap battery chargers can quickly permanently reduce the capacity of
the cells by overcooking them.

4. also ASAAR's questions about time since charge etc.

cheers - Bruce G
June 26, 2005 2:40:41 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

>
> Not necessarily. It could be that the MMC card does use
> significantly more power than SD cards, although I tend to doubt
> that it would make much more than a very slight difference.

Ok.


> It
> could be that one of the two NiMH cells is defective. Do you use a
> charger that shows when each cell finishes charging? High capacity
> cells in one of my chargers takes about 70 minutes to fully charge.
> A weak or damaged cell might take less than 30 minutes to charge.

Well, I have 4 batteries, and I use them in couples.... each couple
seems to have the same duration.
A friend of mine, who has the same camera, states more or less the same
number of shots before batteries exhaust.


> If I used a cheaper charger that had only a single indicator to show
> when charging finished, I'd have no clue that any cell was weaker
> than the best one being charged.

I suspect that this charger works with a timer... but I bought it with
2300mah cells included, so it should be tuned for this charge.
My charger has a LED for each cell.


> When were the NiMH cells last
> charged? A day before using them? Two weeks? A month? Were any
> power-wasting modes enabled, such as continuous focusing?
>
Yeah, a day before. That's it.
I just set the camera in AUTO mode, and I think there was no time for
continous focusing, because I switch from wide to tele and take a shot.


> A good, inexpensive test would be to try the equivalent of the
> CIPA test using a pair of fresh alkaline AA batteries. If your A520
> is typical of the recent cameras on the market, it should take about
> 1/2 the number of pictures that NiMH allows. Your manual might also
> mention expected battery life using alkalines. My camera's manual
> states that using CIPA procedures, it should take 200 shots using
> alkalines and 400 using NiMH. I tried duplicating the test using
> alkalines and got just a bit more than the claimed 200 shots out of
> the alkalines. But continuing the test without using the flash from
> that point, the alkalines were able to take another 400 shots. The
> camera uses xD cards, which *may* require much less battery power
> than older technology, but I don't have any data that verifies that.
>
Well, Canon states (tell me if I'm wrong) 80 shots with alkaine
batteries, while NiMH should guarantee for 300 shots(!)



Anyway, Canon claims 300 shots with the memory card supplied with the
camera (which is 16Mb, and thus may be much less power consuming).



Do you guys think that compression may be an issue? I mean, if I use
the minimum JPEG compression, the dsp on the camera spends less energy
but the camera spends more energy writing more data to the flash.
On the other hand, if I compress more I'll spend more enery but have
less data to write (so less energy on the flash...)


So many variables!!!!



Thanks to all for your answers/suggestions!
Aldo
Anonymous
June 28, 2005 4:18:30 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital (More info?)

In article <JCvve.74896$75.3643673@news4.tin.it>, hal@somewhere.net
says...
> Well, Canon states (tell me if I'm wrong) 80 shots with alkaine
> batteries, while NiMH should guarantee for 300 shots(!)
>
all digicams require high peak currents for short periods. Alkalines are
bad at supplying these peaks. If your camera has higher peak demands
than average, it will work very badly on alkalines, making NiMH look
better.

From memory, alkalines are usually about 2300 mah (similar to NiMH) when
run at low currents (say 20 hour discharge rate) but their performance
drops off at high current.

Some alkalines are better than others at high peak currents, but the
simple solution is only use them in dire emergencies and use NiMH the
rest of the time. This has been covered a zillion times in this
newsgroup.
>
>
> Anyway, Canon claims 300 shots with the memory card supplied with the
> camera (which is 16Mb, and thus may be much less power consuming).
>
>
>
> Do you guys think that compression may be an issue? I mean, if I use
> the minimum JPEG compression, the dsp on the camera spends less energy
> but the camera spends more energy writing more data to the flash.
> On the other hand, if I compress more I'll spend more enery but have
> less data to write (so less energy on the flash...)
>
>
> So many variables!!!!
>
But most of the variables that matter for you are the batteries.
!