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Old May 24, 2005, 10:16 PM   #1
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Just wondering how long you should leave a camera turned on to use the same amount of battery as turning off then turning on again? I figure that starting the camera up uses quite a bit of power, but don't know how long it should be left on before it would have been better to turn the camera off then on again.


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Old May 25, 2005, 3:35 AM   #2
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Hi Chris.

I don't have any scientifically tried and trusted stats as to what would be best in this situation, but, I take my lead from my camera options. The Powersave function allows me to choose up to 10 minutes for the camera to go into Powersave mode when nothing on the camera has been touched in the set period, leaving only the data panel on top of my camera on. (I actually have it set to 3 minutes).From this I would think that if you knew you were not going to take another shot in that ten minutes, it would be best to switch off to conserve the battery. Most cameras have this function and with some it will put it in to stand by mode and not switch off completely, ready for a quick 'get away'.

Of course, the problem is that you can't always be certain you will not take another photo in that time period and it depends on how quick your camera can start up as to whether or not you miss that great shot.

In most circumstances though I would switch off as I explained above, but would highly recommend you get another battery/batteries to reduceyour concern over running out of power.

Hopefully others will come in with their routine, and possibly more knowledge on battery consumption,to help you decide.


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Old May 25, 2005, 10:03 AM   #3
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I would be very surprised if the start-up battery draw was anywhere near the amount used to save each photo. How often to switch off your camera is more likely to depend on how big the start-up time is - and your tollerence for that delay. I tend to leave the camera on since my old Casio has a very long start-up time.

In any case, you should have an extra set of batteries with you. If you don't, that will be the time you find out that your batteries have just gone dead just as Big Food starts doing a polka with Elvis right in front of you.
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Old May 25, 2005, 10:32 AM   #4
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It probably depends on the camera. For example, if you've got a model that must extend and retract the lens during startup/shutdown, this probably draws a lot of power.

With a little pocket camera I use (Konica KD-510z). I usually turn it off between shots (despite it's extending lens design). Startup/Shutdown is fast enough for this to be practical (and it turns on and off via a sliding cover which also protects the lens when closed).

Battery life would probably be improved by leaving it open (provided I let it go into a sleep mode, which turns off the LCD). But, from my perspective, spare batteries are cheap.

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Old May 25, 2005, 4:38 PM   #5
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Thanks guys, you have been very helpful! I might do some tests myself and post the results here.:-)
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Old May 26, 2005, 12:25 AM   #6
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Here is a link with info on the Minolta Dimage 7 camera. If you go to the Power page, you will find some useful information regarding current draw. He doesn't give startup current, but that could be estimated as the sum of record mode and autofocus currents, plus probable additions. If we guesstimate the startup time at 2 seconds and the average current at .75 A , we get 1.5 Amp-seconds. In the standby mode, he records the current as less than 0.04mA. (1/25000A) This works out to quite a long time on standby.


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