In this video, Caleb Pike from DSLR Video Shooter looked at several options for giving your camera (and in some cases other accessories) more power – especially when shooting longer videos.
Shooting videos more than anything else takes a toll on your camera’s battery (some cameras more than others but all modern cameras suffer from this issue to some degree and the higher resolution and frame rate you shoot – the faster your battery is likely to drain).
So what can you do besides getting extra batteries (which isn’t always an option if you want to shoot continuously), well as Pike shows in this video – there are actually quite a few options – here are a few of them:
- V-mount plates – using a Gold or V-mount batteries you can power almost any camera for many hours. There are many options currently on the market. Pike recommends the very interesting Tilta V-Mount Baseplate (around $180), Soonwell V Mount Plat (around $88) and Fotga V Mount Plate ($149) although that last one got pretty poor reviews on Amazon. The beauty of V-mount plates is that you can connect so much more than just camera dummy batteries to them – they have enough power and in some cases enough connections to power your monitor and even a small light or recorder at the same time – super handy.
- NP-F Battery Plates – These don’t offer as much versatility as V-mount batteries but they are smaller and less expensive and if you only need to power your camera (and maybe your monitor) they are a good option. Pike suggests the TILTA TA-BSP-F970 F970 Battery Baseplate (under $110) which is not as advanced as the V-mount version but it does have a plate and a 7.4V and 12V out ports. If you want a simpler solution the tiny Tilta TA-BTP-F970 NP-F970 Battery Plate (which only costs $43) – do keep in mind that you will need to buy a dummy battery with a male DC connector.
- USB Power – not every camera can be powered using a USB but for those that can, this is an interesting option but Pike suggests getting the units with dual USB cables. There is also the iFootage Electric Ray which is still a pretty inexpensive solution (selling for under $50).
- Battery Grip – Another more common option is just to get a battery grip. This has other advantages of course like making the camera bigger and easier to operate in portrait mode but the biggest advantage is having two batteries (in most grips) and the option to remove the battery from the side (which can be useful on some setups).
- AC adaptor – if you are O.K. with connecting to the AC, then an AC adaptor (with a dummy battery) is a really good idea. We use the very useful Sony FW-50 AC kit (at around $100 it is expensive but it works great – for some reason, there is no version for the FZ100 yet).
You can check out more of videos from our photography gear guides section here on LensVid.