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Old Jan 24, 2007, 8:15 PM   #11
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reppans wrote:
Ummmm, have you checked the operating temp of your camera? I think the low end might be around 32F. Seems to me that the camera might have a problem way before the batteries do.

Might not be an issue if you keep your camera in an inside jacket pocket, but then that should keep the battery toasty too.
It's not really a problem. Even DSLR bodies are rated to rather warm lower temps, but seem to work just fine at well below 0 degrees F. I think the main reason is that LCD displays get lazy, and then quit working when they get too cold. It is a temporary problem, as they return to form after warming up, but you lose the ability to review shots while the LCD is out of service. Also, if your camera does not have an optical viewfinder, you will be SOL, as the back LCD, and/or the EVF will be of no use for composition until they warm up again.

Batteries are a more hard and fast issue. Alkaline batteries lose capacity fast, even at 32 degrees F. NiMh/Enerloop do much better, and can stand much lower temps, but at the temps the OP listed, Lithium is the only workable choice.

One problem that I have with the big rush to Enerloop batteries is that standard NiMh batteries come in much larger capacity. An Enerloop does hold it's charge well, but even by Sanyo tests, a normal NiMh battery retains 75% of it's charge after 6 months on the shelf. That's pretty good. It also means that a 2700 MAh NiMh battery has more capacity left after sitting on a shelf for 6 months than an Enerloop 2000 MAh battery has with a fresh charge.

There is a huge capacity difference between 2000, and 2700 MAh when used in a camera or flash unit. Besides, if the length of your trip is less than a month long, your unused 2700 MAh batteries will still retain over 95% of their full charge, according to Sanyo's testing compared to their Enerloop series.

Even the additional burst current capability has a negligable effect in a flash unit (for a variety of reasons).

I would stick with high capacity NiMh batteries until Sanyo developed 2500 MAh Enerloop batteries unless I parked my camera for more than a few months at a time.

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Old Aug 3, 2007, 4:24 AM   #12
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Hello, I am looking for a secondary (rechargable) battery, which is possible to use in -40C (storage/charge/discharge) and try to find the reasons why each type of battery is useful or useless (for example: the main reason is freezing the electrolyte). It can be whatever type of secondary battery (not only for digi cam). Thank you for opinions and advices.
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Old Aug 3, 2007, 4:53 AM   #13
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I suggest you try contacting one of the polar exploration and scientific organisations, e.g, in the UK it would be the British Antarctic Survey, which you'll find easily in a quick Google.
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Old Aug 3, 2007, 11:09 PM   #14
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Lead-acid batteries continue working at -40 degrees. If they didin't, I wouldn't be able to start my truck some mornings.

I think that the wet electrolyte nickel-cadmium cells work at these temps also, as they are use in military aircraft.

When taking pictures at sub zero (F) temps, I use an external lead-acid gel electrolyte battery, which I keep under my coat. This would probably also work with other rechargeables.

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