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Old Aug 20, 2003, 2:53 PM   #1
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Default Overseas usage of Minolta charger

I'm thinking of buying a Minolta Xt to be used overseas (Philippines, 220V.) However, I found this from the official Minolta website Q&A:

Question: Can I use the battery charger BC-300 overseas?

Answer: No, you cannot. This is due, not only to the shape of the plug, but also to the fact that the AC cable for BC-300 does not comply with overseas regulations.
Though the label on BC-300 indicates the voltage rating (100-240V), the durability of the power cord for each type of BC-300 differs respectively.
Minolta has no responsibility for any damage or loss incurred by use of AC adapter or BC-300 not warranted in the region.

Is it a case of Minolta playing it too safe or is this a legit concern?
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Old Aug 21, 2003, 5:05 AM   #2
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If the voltage rating is 100-240V and the Hz is 50-60, then I see no reason why the adapter could not be used worldwide. You might need a converter for the plug, but otherwise I think it should work fine.

If anyone knows why it would not work, I would be very curious to know why.

My guess is Minolta is playing the legal CYA game.

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Old Aug 25, 2003, 5:31 PM   #3
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Last summer I went to Norway. I used a converter, plugged my Minolta charger into it and no problems. I been back a year now and its still working.
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Old Sep 23, 2003, 6:20 PM   #4
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Default Re: Overseas usage of Minolta charger

Originally Posted by Dey
Is it a case of Minolta playing it too safe or is this a legit concern?
I agree with the amazingthailand. Minolta is justifiably cautious of litigious Americans.

The charger has a very standard "figure-of-eight" socket, and you should be able to get matching local power leads without difficulty, or just buy a plug adaptor.

If you're an American, do not follow the advice in this posting. (I'm afraid of American lawyers, too
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Old Oct 10, 2003, 7:54 AM   #5
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For those interested in traveling to the UK with their Dimage Xt cameras, I received the following message this morning from Minolta:

"With regard to your inquiry, your understanding is right; in order to use the charger in U.K. without damaging the unit and/or the batteries, please connect the Battery Charger BC-300 (which covers 100-240V) with the AC-cord APC-120 which matches with voltage level of U.K."

This AC cord is sold in the U.S. at the Konica/Minolta online store: shop.minoltausa.com for $8.00 + tax and shipping. I would image that they also sell cords for use in other parts of the world. Hope this helps.
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Old Oct 10, 2003, 10:51 AM   #6
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Cords are rated in amps and 220v is going to carry nearly twice the amperage in the same cord as 120v. So there just can’t be any problem with a cord that will work in the US. Other than holding a cross to repel the vampire lawyers the charger might require a ground, but I haven’t seen one that does.

From the wording it appears that there are countries that require a heavier cord. When I lived in the British Isles I got a look at their approach. There were a multitude of plugs with no standard. So they designed one to be the standard UK plug. If an elephant is a mouse designed by a committee then the plug was an elephant. It looked as though it could provide power for a small office building at 220v and it had a built-in fuse. You had to take the thing apart to see the fuse and it was solid so you had to use a tester to see whether it was good. If the Brits think you need an enormous plug that looks like it came from Faraday’s lab to plug a lamp in I can see where they might require 4 gauge wire for a small battery charger.

I found the easiest place to find the adapters for the plugs was in the destination country. You don’t have to buy kits and the like – just walk into a local electronics store and you can get a simple adapter for a buck with the US to EU standard adapter or whatever is appropriate for the country. Of course the Brit adapter costs more – the cost of the brass alone is restrictive.

I traveled to places that had some odd plugs. Some hotels seem to use their own socket so you can’t plug anything in except in the bathroom razor adapter – cross in front of the vampires again. They probably got tired of Americans using socket adapters to plug their 110v hair dryers into the wall and then wanting the hotel to be responsible. And of course there are the older British hotels that have whatever socket they were using locally the month they installed the wiring.

So I made my own adapter that works anywhere. I soldered 12 gauge solid wire to the plug on a standard American extension. The wire extended about 1.5 inches from the American connectors for flexibility and everything was insulated except for the last inch. It worked in any socket in the world. Of course you had to jam something non-conductive into the ground of the Brit elephant to unlock the main sockets – did I mention it is overdesigned?
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Old Nov 11, 2003, 6:16 AM   #7
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Default no problem with 220V

Hi everybody

After some doubts about the feasibility of using the charger
in my country (Chile, where we have 220V, 50Hz) I decided to buy
the Dimage Xt in amazon.com. I consulted a technician, he told me that the 3A cable should be not a problem here, then I used
the BC-300 charger with the cable without problems. Everything worked fine. So not be scare about the use of the USA cable in a zone with 220 V.

I must say that I am extremely happy with the camera and its perfomance.


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Old Nov 13, 2003, 8:31 PM   #8
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Cords are rated in amps and 220v is going to carry nearly twice the amperage in the same cord as 120v.
I am an engineer, and I'd like to correct the statement above. For a given power requirement (in watts) about half the current is required at 240V compared to that required at 120V. Power is the product of the current times the voltage.

What can distinguish a power cord designed for use at 240V vs one for 120V is breakdown voltage of the insulation. However, I don't think that there is usually any difference in the insulation used - the 120V cords have an insulation with quite a high breakdown voltage, as do the 240V cords.

I travel overseas a lot, and I often use my laptop computer, camera recharger, phone charger, razor, etc. in both 120V 60Hz and 220/240V 50Hz countries with only the required plug adapter for the local socket.

It is certainly a lot easier to travel internationally with equipment now than it used to be. Nearly all of the power supplies are 100-240V 50-60Hz these days. Now, if we could only standardize plugs worldwide!
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