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Battery life of a Canon G3

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Anonymous
September 26, 2005 12:50:26 PM

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

Ive had my Canon camera for maybe 2 years now and its always worked
beautifully. No problem with recharging the battery till now. The
camera would take about 3 photos and then the low battery sign would
appear. However much I recharged the battery, the same thing happened.
I bought a new battery as I realised these problems may simply have
been due to the original battery being worn out.

Anyhow, the new battery was charged up for 24 hours and it kept its
charge through many photo sessions until it need recharging again. And
then the problem starts again.. 2 or 3 photos taken and the low
battery sign pops up, the camera shuts down automatically. Its very
annoying as you can imagine.

My local camera shop will send the camera, battery and charger off to
be tested - takes 3 weeks to get a reply and costs a non returnable
£50 or £60 (returnable if they fix the problem. Im about to start
university and cant be without my camera for that long.

Anyone got any better ideas please?

many thanks

More about : battery life canon

Anonymous
September 26, 2005 1:25:01 PM

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

lou trigg wrote:

> Ive had my Canon camera for maybe 2 years now and its always worked
> beautifully. No problem with recharging the battery till now. The
> camera would take about 3 photos and then the low battery sign would
> appear. However much I recharged the battery, the same thing happened.
> I bought a new battery as I realised these problems may simply have
> been due to the original battery being worn out.
>
> Anyhow, the new battery was charged up for 24 hours and it kept its
> charge through many photo sessions until it need recharging again. And
> then the problem starts again.. 2 or 3 photos taken and the low
> battery sign pops up, the camera shuts down automatically. Its very
> annoying as you can imagine.
>
> My local camera shop will send the camera, battery and charger off to
> be tested - takes 3 weeks to get a reply and costs a non returnable
> £50 or £60 (returnable if they fix the problem. Im about to start
> university and cant be without my camera for that long.
>
> Anyone got any better ideas please?
>
> many thanks

I'm no engineer, but it seems to me that the symptoms you
describe indicate that the charger is the problem. The new
battery probably came to you fully charged. Putting it in the
failed charger did not discharge it. You put it in the camera
and it worked fine. That indicates to me that the camera is fine
and the battery is fine. But when you tried to recharge it,
nothing happened. The three shots you got out of the battery
were just the usual recovery of charge that almost exhausted
batteries show when left to rest for a bit.

So the first thing to do is to find out if your battery charger
works. Look at the specifications section of the manual and see
what the output voltage and amperage are supposed to be. Check
them with a meter. If the charger is not putting out enough
juice, your battery is just not being charged. If the output is
zero, check to see if there's a broken connection somewhere that
you can fix, otherwise find a replacement. You probably have to
put a battery in the charger the charger while you meter it in
order to test it under load.

If the output voltage or amperage is too high, there's a short in
the charger. The charger needs to be replaced and the battery
may already be fried - however I doubt if that happened since you
had the new battery on the charger for 24 hours without apparent
damage.

As a final test of this theory, if you know someone with a Canon
G3 or any camera with a charger that outputs the same voltage
and current (the camera shop probably has such a charger if nobody
else you know does), ask them to try charging your new battery.
If it works after that, you've confirmed the diagnosis.

As we say on this side of the pond, that's my two cents worth of
advice.

Good luck.

Alan
Anonymous
September 26, 2005 1:51:26 PM

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

Hi Alan, thanks for that advice. The battery didnt arrive fully
charged and I was able to charge it up for a recommended 24 hours (as
opposed to the 4 hours or so that it says the manual). So yes, the
charger did work a few weeks back.

help!
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Anonymous
September 26, 2005 2:24:43 PM

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

lou trigg wrote:
> Hi Alan, thanks for that advice. The battery didnt arrive fully
> charged and I was able to charge it up for a recommended 24 hours (as
> opposed to the 4 hours or so that it says the manual). So yes, the
> charger did work a few weeks back.
>
> help!

When you say it didn't arrive fully charged I assume you mean that
you tested it and found that it was fully discharged. Then you
charged it successfully. If that's not the case, then maybe it was
charged when you received it and you didn't know it, or maybe it was
partially charged. In either case, it might have carried enough
charge to work fine for you for several weeks until it was fully
discharged.

If I were you I'd still check the battery charger with a meter, or
take the battery to someone who can charge it for you as a test.
Replacing the charger is a cheap and easy solution and I'm hoping
that's
it.

Did the camera get hot when you used it? If the camera itself were
shorting and draining the battery I would think it would get hot.
But then I wouldn't expect it to have worked for a normal run of
photos when you first put the new battery in.

On my cameras, when I put a battery in the charger, a red LED light
goes on. When the battery is fully charged, the light turns green.
Does your charger work that way? Does the light turn red and then
green when you put the battery in the charger - or does it always
stay red? If the lights don't work normally, you have more clues
about the nature of the problem.

Alan
Anonymous
September 26, 2005 2:29:03 PM

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

Another cheap test. This one has a .01% chance of working, but it
costs nothing to do. Try cleaning the terminals that connect to the
battery inside the camera, on the battery, and in the charger. You
can use a pencil eraser to rub them clean, then blow away the
eraser rubbings.

Like I say, a vanishingly small chance this will help, but it costs
nothing
to try.

Alan
Anonymous
September 26, 2005 6:31:47 PM

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

Hi again Alan - what a nice patient man you are!

Im believe that the battery was partially charged when I bought it.

In actual fact (I should have mentioned this before!) when my original
battery had these problems I bought the new one. The new one had the
same problems and so I exchanged it for this one, as the shop and I
assumed the previous battery was faulty. (Are you still with me
here?!)

So to clarify, this is battery number 3. It goes thru the flashing LED
red light, then the still red light and then finally green when its
fully charged.

The camera didnt get hot.

I will try cleaning the terminals as you suggest. Thank you again!
Anonymous
September 26, 2005 10:56:09 PM

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

On 26 Sep 2005 14:31:47 -0700, lou trigg wrote:

> So to clarify, this is battery number 3. It goes thru the flashing LED
> red light, then the still red light and then finally green when its
> fully charged.

Several things come to mind. One is that some makes of equipment
that uses lithium batteries use a design that "learns"
characteristics of the battery, to be able to display more accurate
"time remaining" information. Sony and IBM do this, and there are
probably others. When batteries are exchanged, there may be a
procedure that needs to be followed that allows the charger to start
from a blank slate, making no assumptions about the battery.

Also, if there really is something wrong with the charger, you
could buy another one, and use it to charge your batteries. I
imagine that there are several that cost less than Canon's.

Your shop may not have any more G3s on hand, unless they're used.
But if they have a G5 or G6 (assuming they use the same battery) you
could see if they can take more than 3 pictures before the low
battery indicator flashes, using your batteries. If they can take
many pictures, your G3 needs to be fixed. If they also conk out
after 2 or 3 pictures, either the batteries or your charger would
seem to be the problem. As all of the batteries behave similarly,
it makes the charger appear to be responsible for not charging your
batteries adequately.
Anonymous
September 27, 2005 5:19:15 AM

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

Thank you Asaar. Some good ideas and I will check them all out.

many thanks to both

lou
Anonymous
September 27, 2005 9:24:55 AM

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

On 27 Sep 2005 01:19:15 -0700, lou trigg wrote:

> Thank you Asaar. Some good ideas and I will check them all out.
>
> many thanks to both

You're welcome. Good luck with your camera, and let's hope it's
just the charger that's bad. The Canon charger for my old
Powershot S10 also went bad, but that was a completely different
design, possibly the last of their NiMH chargers. I was fortunate
in that I had a second charger, which made it easy to diagnose the
problem.
Anonymous
September 27, 2005 2:06:39 PM

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

I think I may have worked out the problem (fingers crossed). When I
got this 3rd battery someone in a camera shop suggested I charge it up
for 24 hours plus, as opposed to the 4 hours that it says in the
manual. So I did that and then used it for ages and took many photos.
When I wrote this query on here, I just recharged the battery for a
couple of hours till the green light was on. The camera took 3 photos
and then the low battery sign came on. So I recharged it again for
much longer, over 24 hours, and so far so good.

These batteries have a memory dont they? If so, presumably I need to
recharge for 24+ hours each time?
Anonymous
September 27, 2005 5:49:08 PM

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

hmm, ok, thats helpful again, thank you. I;ll see how this goes and if
necessary get a new charger.

thanks so much for your time :) 
Anonymous
September 27, 2005 7:47:03 PM

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

On 27 Sep 2005 10:06:39 -0700, lou trigg wrote:

> These batteries have a memory dont they? If so, presumably
> I need to recharge for 24+ hours each time?

I don't think lithium rechargeables are considered to have a
"memory", although some "smart" charging software does. It may be
that your charger isn't operating properly and shuts down far too
soon, or it only trickle charges. Then after 24+ hours of trickle
charging the battery would be fairly well if not fully charged. But
I haven't heard of any Li-ion chargers that don't fully charge their
batteries in a small fraction of that amount of time. Many battery
types, not just lithiums, have recommendations to keep the battery
in the charger for 24 hours for its very first charge. But
subsequent charges don't require that. Many chargers also
misleadingly indicate that the charge has finished, but they're
designed to switch to a trickle charge when the battery has only
been charged to 85% or 90% of its capacity. When I spoke with a
RayOVac technician (or engineer) about one of their chargers I was
told that the "finished charging" indicator came on early because
most people would be able to use the batteries quickly, and the loss
of 10% or so of capacity wouldn't be noticed. But if the indicator
came on only when the trickle charging topped off the batteries
several hours later, they might get frustrated waiting much longer
for very little additional gain.
!