Advertisements

Camera Batteries

[If you like this blog, please take a few seconds to take a look of the ads at the end of the post. Thank you. TLRgraphy will continuously collect the best information about twin-lens reflex cameras]

 

Battery Technologies

Mercuric Oxide: Mercury batteries were commonly used in many classic cameras of the 1960s and 1970s for their CdS (cadmium sulfide) metering systems. Mercuric oxide batteries provide a constant and stable 1.35 volts over most of their life. This means that the camera does not have to have voltage regulation circuitry, considerably lowering the cost of production. Unfortunately, mercury batteries were outlawed in the U.S. in the 1980s and are not readily available anymore. However, all is not lost. There are several solutions below.

Alkaline (zinc/manganese dioxide; Zn/MnO2): This is the chemistry used in your standard alkaline battery (C, D, AA, AAA, etc.). New batteries give 1.5 volts which quickly declines over the life of the battery. Alkaline batteries have high internal resistance which means they will not discharge quickly. This reduces their usefulness in high-drain devices such as camera flashes or motor drives.

Standard and Heavy-Duty (zinc/carbon and zinc-chloride): This is the chemistry used in “standard” and “heavy-duty” batteres (C, D, AA, AAA, etc.). New cells give 1.5 volts which quickly declines over the life of the cell. Zinc-Carbon batteries have less than a third of the storage capacity of “Alkaline” (ZInc-Manganese dioxide) batteries and we do not recommend their use in any situation.

Silver-Oxide: Starting in the 1970s, camera manufacturers started to move to silver-oxide “button” batteries. Silver-oxide cells provide 1.55 volts fresh out of the can, but then the voltage slowly drops over the life – not as much as alkaline batteries, but more than mercuric-oxide. This means that cameras could not depend on the voltage being stable and started to use what are called “bridge circuits” to reduce the effect of the falling voltage.

Lithium (LiMnO2)Into the late 1990s, even relatively simple mechanical cameras such as the Leica M7 were power-hungry as they had sophisticated CPU units drawing power. Camera manufacturers started to push the use of lithium cells with Lithium Manganese-Dioxide (LiMn02). These cells have names that start with “CR” such as: CR2032, CR1/3N, or 2CR5. Based on light metal chemistry, lithium cells have incredible storage capacity for their size — many times that of alkaline or silver-oxide batteries. They also have much better cold weather performance as well as a shelf-life of 10+ years. The only downside is that lithium is a pollutant, so dispose of your lithium batteries at an approved recycling center as LiMnO2 cells are not rechargeable.

Rechargeables: Nickel-cadmium (NiCad) batteries are rapidly being eclipsed by newer Nickel-Metal-Hydride (NiMH) rechargeables. In the common AA size, NiMH batteries can store up to 2400 mAH. Unlike alkalines, NiMH have low internal resistance which makes them ideal for the fast refresh cycles of camera flashes (warning: not all flash units are compatible with NiCad/NiMH batteries). For digital cameras, NiMH itself is rapidly being replaced with Lithium-Polymer and Lithium-Ion (LiPo and Li-Ion) batteries.

Discontinued Camera and Watch Batteries
Type Used In Solutions
PX-27
aka EPX27, V27PX, 4NR43
5.6V
Mercury Silver
xxg xxD x xxH mm.Discontinued

Minox 35 GL and other Minox cameras

1) Four 1.5v SR44 batteries, a PX-28A or PX28S can be used for cameras that don’t mind the voltage difference.

2) Minox used to sell an adapter for the Minox 35 that would allow SR44 batteries, you may be able to still obtain one at a camera store or ebay.

PX-32
aka Eveready TR164, E164, Varta 164PX, National/Panasonic HM-4N, Rayovac RPX-32, ANSI 1404M, IBC 4NR52
5.6V
Mercury Silver
36g 17.0D x 44.5H mm.Discontinued

Yashica GSN

Left to right: 25c spring, alkaline PX-28, and the original PX-32.
Use the spring and a cardboard tube to approximate the size of the PX-32.

1) Many cameras including the GSN can take a PX-28A 6V alkaline battery with a small spring inserted to take up slack (see Matt Denton’s solution). Wrap the PX-28 in some cardboard to make it roughly the same diameter as the PX-32, then use the spring to take up the difference in length.

2) Four 1.5v LR44 batteries can also be used, similar to solution #1.

3) Some stores (check PhotoBattery.com) still have the discontinued 6V alkaline PX-32A batteries, although these may be older stock. Check the expiration dates.

4) Some cameras (not the GSN) require adjustment to the metering circuitry for the difference between 5.6V and 6V batteries.

5) Yashica Guy adaptor or the CRIS HM4N Adaptorand alkaline PX28A batteries. These contain diodes to take the voltage down to 5.6V.

PX-400
aka Energizer E400N, ANSI 1116M, IBC MR42
1.35V
Mercuric Oxide
1.40g 11.6Dx3.60H mm.Discontinued

Asahi Pentax Spotmatic SP, SPII, SPIIa, etc.

1) The 1.55v silver oxide Energizer E387S is an exact fit. This is also sold as the Radio Shack 387S (RSU #11608452), but is a special RSU order. PhotoBattery.com has the S400PX as a replacement.

2) Both of the above are 1.55v silver oxide. They work with the Spotmatic which has voltage regulating bridge circuitry, but other older cameras may be more problematic.

3CRIS H-B Adaptor and silver 377 batteries. The CRIS adaptor has a diode to take it down to the proper voltage, although the Spotmatic doesn’t need the lower voltage.

4) Wein zinc-air cell have a stable voltage over their life and are thus suited to many older cameras. The disadvantage is that these only last a few months. Sources for Wein cells noted below.

PX-625
aka Eveready E625, ANSI 1123M, IBC MR9
PX13, EPX13, H-D, 1124MP, EPX625
1.35V
Mercuric Oxide
450 mAH
4.20g 16.0Dx6.2H mm.Discontinued

Canon Canonet

Miranda Sensorex

Yashica Lynx 14

Nikon F meter 14

Yashica-Mat 124/124G

1) Many cameras can take a PX625A 1.5V alkaline (aka Energizer E625G) battery directly

2) Others can take a PX-625A with adjustments made to the metering circuitry. You can solder your own diode in directly, if you have the right skills (don’t ask me, I don’t). PhotoBattery.com has PX625A replacements.

3) Wein zinc-air cell. The disadvantage is that these only last a few months. Sources for Wein cells noted below.

4) CRIS MR 9 Adaptor and silver 386 batteries. The CHRIS adaptor has a diode to take it down to the proper voltage.

5) Paul Birkeland-Green has been making custom adapters for a while for the Nikon F meter

PX-6401.35V
Mercuric Oxide
7.94g 15.9D x 11.2H mm.Discontinued

Minolta Hi-Matic
Yashica GX

1) The Yashica GX can take a 1.5v SR44 silver cell with some tin foil wadding directly

2) Apparently the Hi-Matic can take a LR44 as well, but I have not tested this. Beware!

PX-675
aka EPX675, RPX675, KX675, HD675, MR44, H-C
1.35V
Mercuric Oxide
210mAH
11.6D x 5.4H mm.Discontinued

Petri Color 35
Konica T3, Autoreflex A, T2, Auto S3

1) Some cameras can take a 1.5V SR44 silver-oxide battery instead. The height is the same but the diameter is slightly smaller.

Eveready No. 504
Neda 220, M504
10F15, W10, W10E, V74PX
15V 88mAh
Carbon Zinc
also Alkaline15.9g 15.1D x 34.9H mm.Still being manufactured

Zeiss, Canon, Minox, and Rollei 16S AG-1 flash units

1) These are still being manufactured. Most speciality stores should have them. This isn’t a mercury cell, but still odd enough to note on this page.

2) BatteriesPlus and PhotoBattery.com stock them regularly.

Eveready No. 505
Neda 221, M505
15F15, W15, MV15E
22.5V 84mAh
Zinc Chloride
15.9g 15.1D x 50.9H mm.Still being manufactured

Bolsey flash unit

Ricoh 500 flash unit

1) These are still being manufactured. Most speciality stores should have them. This isn’t a mercury cell, but still odd enough to note on this page.

2) Radio Shack stocks it as Catalog #960-2089, but it isn’t a store item and must be RSU ordered.

3) Batteries Plus stocks them regularly.

ommon Camera and Watch Batteries
Type Used In Solutions
SR44
Energizer 357/303
Duracell D357
KA76, LR1154, EPX76, S76, etc.
1.55V 160 mAh
Silver-Oxide
11.8 D x  5.4 H mm

Lots-n-lots of cameras, light meters, pocket alarm clocks, laser pointers, darkroom timers, calculators, etc.

This is a pretty popular size of watch battery. You should be able to get it in any drugstore or supermarket fairly easily. Make sure you get the silver-oxide SR-44 and not the “equivalent” but less powerful alkaline LR-44.

Price check:
$1.31 
($3.93 / pack 3; Walmart, MN 2003.05)
$1.49 
(B&H 2003.05) 
$1.54 
($4.62 / pack 3; Menards MN 2004.06) 
$1.95 
(Menards, MN 2003.04)
$2.00 (BatteryStation.com; 2007.05)
$2.69 (ZBattery.com; 2004.01)

LR44
KS76, MS76, SP76, A76, PX76a, AG13
1.5V 105 mAh
Alkaline
11.8 D x  5.4 H mm
 Lots-n-lots of gadgets

Exactly the same size as the silver-oxide SR44, the LR44 is a very common battery and should be readily available just about anywhere.

Price check:
$0.25 (BatteryStation.com; 2007.05)
$0.62 (VintageBatteries.com; 2005.05)
$0.95 (B&H 2003.05)

¥50 (¥100/2-pack; Can Do, Japan 2004.09) 

Note: This is the wimpy version of the silver-oxide SR44. It has much less power but is often half the price. Since a dead battery in a camera is a Very Bad Thing® and usually happens far far away from a camera store, I don’t recommend the use of alkalines. Use the SR-44 instead.

SR54
V389, 17, 1138SO, 280-15, M, G10, RW49, S1131E, SB-BU, SR1130W, 10L122
1.55V 70 mAh
Silver Oxide
11.6mm D x  3.05 H mm
Some digital table clocks including my designer calculator / clock

The alkaline version of this cell is LR54. Where possible, use the silver oxide version as it has more energy.

Price check:

$0.69 (Budget Batteries; 2010.03.20)

SR927
SR927W, SR57, SB-BP/EP, 280-44, W, V399, D399, 613, GP399, 926E, 399, LR927, GR927
1.55V
Silver Oxide
9.5mm D x  2.6 H mm
Some watches including my Casio Pathfinder

The alkaline version of this cell is AG7 / LR57. Where possible, use the silver oxide version as it has more energy.

Price check:
¥xxx (Homac, Japan 2007.12) 

SR936SW
394
1.55V
Silver Oxide
9.5 D x  3.6 H mm
Some watches including my Swatch Irony

This is a relatively uncommon battery and I had a little bit of trouble finding it. It’s also more expensive than other silver-oxide cells in the same size.

Price check:
¥698 (Homac, Japan 2007.12

PX28S, PX-28
4SR44, 4G13, 4SG13, 28PX, 544, KS28, V28, V28PX13.0 D x 25.2mm H6.2V
Silver Oxide

Yashica G models (w/ adaptor); Minox 35ML, Bronica GS-1, Canon AE-1; Asahi Pentax 6×7 (67)

Hasselblad PME-51, 203FE, 205FCC.

These are not that easy to find in local stores. Zbattery.com is the only place that I’ve seen them regularly stocked. I use 4 x SR-44 batteries instead, wrapping them in cellotape.

There is also a Lithium version PX28L or 2CR1/3N that has more capacity (see below) and can often be used in the same cameras that take the PX28S.

Price check:
$4.27 (ZBattery.com; 2004.01)
¥1837 (Bic Camera; Tokyo 2004.09)

Note: The shelf-life of this is about 8 years. In a pinch, you can use 4 x SR44 batteries instead.

PX28L
2CR1/3N, L544, L544BP, V28PXL, K28L, 2CR11108, 2CR1/3H, CR28L, 1406LC13.0mm D x 25.2mm H6V 160mAh
Lithium

Yashica G models (w/ adaptor); Asahi Pentax 6×7 (67)

Hasselblad PME-51, 203FE, 205FCC.

This is the same size as the PX28S / 4SR44 but because it is lithium, it is 6V instead of 6.2V. Most cameras will not mind. The lithium performs better in cold-weather conditions than the silver-oxide. Lithium cells have a shelf-life of about 10 years unused.

Note that it’s often cheaper to use two stacked CR1/3N batteries instead of a single PX28L.

Price check:
$6.59 (ZBattery.com; 2010.03)
$4.95 (BatteryJunction.com; 2010.03)
¥882(Bic Camera; Tokyo 2004.09)

Note: The shelf-life of this is about 10 years. In a pinch, you can use usually use a PX28L, two stacked CR1/3N batteries, or four stacked SR44 batteries instead.

PX28A
4LR44, A544, K28A, V34PX, 7H34, 4NZ13, V4034PX, 4034PX, PX28AB, 1414A13.0mm D x 25.2mm H6V
Alkaline (Manganese Dioxide)

Yashica G models (w/ adaptor).

Price check:
$1.99 (VintageBatteries.com; 2005.05)
$3.38 (ZBattery.com; 2004.01)

Note: This is the wimpy version of the Lithium PX28L or silver-oxide PX-28S. It has much less power but is almost the same price. Since a dead battery in a camera is a Very Bad Thing® and usually happens far far away from a camera store, I don’t recommend the use of alkalines.

2CR5
DL245, KL2CR, EL2CR5534 x  17 x 45 mm6V 1300 mAh
Lithium
 (LiMnO2)
EOS 1v, 3, etc.

This battery is commonly used in the Canon EOS professional film cameras. Its advantage was that it fit right into the battery grip. The 2CR5 looks suspiciously like two CR123A cells stuck together in a single package. I wonder if it wouldn’t be possible to make an adapter since CR123A cells are pretty cheap.

Price check:

$3.95 (BatteryJunction 2010.03) 
$5.85 (ZBattery.com; 2004.01)
$5.95 (B&H 2003.5)
$6.98 (Kodak; Savon Drug, CA; 2003.07)
$13.98 (Energizer E2; Savon Drug, CA; 2003.07)

CR 1/3N
DL 1/3 N 

2 L76, CR1, DL1/3N, 2167,CR111, CR1/3 1H11.8 D x  11.0 H mm3V 160mAh
Lithium
 (LiMnO2)
Leica M6, M6TTL, M7, MP
Nikon FE

This battery is used in the newer Leicas (M6/M7). It’s rather rare, most stores don’t reguarly stock them, so I buy in bulk when I find them cheap. Lithium cells have a shelf-life of about 10 years unused.

The CR 1/3N is the same size as two SR-44 silver-oxide batteries, and in a pinch you can tape together two SR-44 cells, which can be bought just about anywhere. They won’t last as long, but they’re good in a pinch.

Price check:
$1.97 (ProEx / Wolf Photo, MN; 2003.05)
$2.25 (BatteryStation.com; 2007.05)
$2.54 (ZBattery.com; 2004.01) 
$3.00 (CheapBatteries.com; 2006.05) 
$4.95 (B&H 2003.05)
¥441 (Bic Camera; Tokyo 2004.09)
¥514(Fujiya Camera, Japan; 2004.09)
¥514 (Yodobashi Camera, Japan; 2004.09)

CR123
EL123A, DL123A, CR123A, CR1734517.1 D x 34.5mm H3v 1300mAh
Lithium (LiMnO2)

Leica SF-20 flash, point and shoot cameras, smaller SLRs, high-end LED flashlights.

This is a pretty popular battery as it’s used in a lot of point and shoot cameras and smaller, consumer SLRs. Popular high-power LED flashlights (3 and 5 watt versions) use CR123As. You can buy them at Radio Shack and larger drugstores for $5-10 each or online for much much cheaper. The advantage of the CR123A over AA batteries is that the CR123A can power about a gazillion flashes before running out and it has excellent low-temperature performance.

$1.00 (BatteryJunction.com 2010.03)
$1.50 (BatteryStation.com 2007.05) 
$1.50 (CheapBatteries.com; 2006.05) 
¥150 (Fujiya Camera Junk Store, Japan; 2004.10)

CR2
CR2N CR1527015.0 D x 27.0mm H3v 750mAh
Lithium (LiMnO2)

Lots of point and shoot and consumer digital cameras.

Konica Hexar RF


This is a pretty popular battery as it’s used in a lot of point and shoot cameras and smaller, consumer SLRs. You can buy it at Radio Shack and larger drugstores or online for much less.


$1.00 (BatteryJunction 2010.03)
$1.50 (BatteryStation.com; 2007.05)
¥150 (Fujiya Camera Junk Store, Japan; 2004.10)

CR203220.0 D x 3.2mm H3V 220mAh
Lithium (LiMnO2)
Gossen Digisix, Digiflash, darkroom timers, calculators, watches, etc.

This is a pretty popular watch/gadget battery. You should be able to get it in any drugstore or supermarket fairly easily.

Price check:
$0.80 (BatteryJunction 2010.03) 
$0.25 (CheapBatteries.com 2006.05) 
$0.50 (BatteryStation.com; 2007.05)
$0.92 (VintageBatteries.com; 2005.05)
$0.99 (ZBattery.com; 2004.01)
$1.79 (B&H 2003.05)
$1.95 (Menards 2003.08)
¥100 (Can Do, Japan 2004.09) 

CR2430
DL2430, KECR2430, ECR2430, BR2430, KCR2430, KL2430, L2024.0 D x 3.0mm H3V 280mAh
Lithium (LiMnO2)
Suunto Advisor

This is pretty much only used in my altimeter/barometer/compass super-watch.

Price check:
$1.24 (BatteryJunction 2010.03) 
$1.29 (ZBattery.com; 2004.01)
$2.00 (BatteryStation 2007.05)
 

$4.99 (RadioShack.com 2008.08) 

 

6 volt Lantern Battery
IEC: 4R25Y, 4R25
ANSI: 908AC, 908C, 908CD, 908D
Energizer EN1209, EN529; MN908; Everready EV90, EV90HP; GP908, PJ996
66 W x 66 L x 115 mm H6V 12 Ah / 26 Ah
Zinc-Carbon / Alkaline
6v lantern battery

Classic battery operated lanterns (torches).

Around $3 for zinc-carbon (heavy duty) to $8-9 for alkaline. The zinc-carbon have less than half the capacity (12 Ah vs 26 Ah) of the alkalines.

9 volt battery
IEC: 6F22, 6LR61
JIS :S006P
ANSI: 1604, 1604A
Energizer 522
17.5 W x 26.5 L x 48.5 mm H 36~45g9V 600 mAh (Zinc) @ 20 mA discharge
Zinc-Manganese Dioxide (Alkaline)
9v transistor radio battery

Standard transistor radio battery used in multimeters, lightmeters, colorimeters, and assorted other handheld electronic devices. Also used in smoke alarms.

Links to more battery information:

AAA vs AA vs C vs D Cells — How much power is in each

Here’s a handy chart from Lada Ada that shows the different power capacity of each type of battery cell:

via Camera Batteries – a complete chart – Photoethnography.coms Classic Camera DB.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: