Today we are testing a very interesting and unique new product – the CAME-TV Dual V-Mount Charger and Power Station. The best way to think of this new tool is like a charging and power station running on V-mount batteries for (almost) every piece of gear you can think about in the studio or in the field.
We’ve already reviewed CameTV lights and recently a camera support vest. The company also offers a number of video solutions, from tripods and heads to wireless audio. Today we’re looking at a couple of their new products: a mini V-mount battery and as we mentioned, the new Power Station.
CAME-TV 99Wh mini V-mount Battery
CameTV 99Wh V-mount batteries are a bit lighter than other similar batteries we’ve worked with. Their maximum output is 15v (6875mAh), which is plenty of juice to power a few accessories at the same time. They feature a USB-A port and dual D-tap ports, one on each side.
There’s a power indicator button on the side of the battery with light-up LEDs. This definitely should be a standard for any battery at this point. There’s also a handy strap on the front of the battery, so you can hang it on the stand when not in use or when connecting to the battery’s integrated ports.
In our tests, fully charging this battery took about 2 hours, and it powered a 60W LED for about an hour.
The Came-TV 99Wh V-mount batteries
CAME-TV Power Station Design and Features
This unit features a pretty simple design with V-mounts on both sides to charge 2 batteries. It has a plastic body, so it’s pretty lightweight. There are padded feet that keep the station sturdy and it won’t topple over if only one battery is connected. There’s also a small storage compartment at the bottom of the unit for cables etc..
The power station offers 9 different ports (1 USB-C, 4 USB-A, 2 DC, 2 D-tap) on one side and 2 AC sockets (110/220V) on the other side. The AC, USB, and DC connections come with their own power buttons. There is a separate button to power on the unit.
The AC sockets are both for European and American style prongs with a grounding pin. We had some trouble with the Macbook power adapter staying in as it is quite heavy. A bit annoying, but there should be simple solutions for this.
On the side of the unit, there is a small screen that shows useful information, like battery charge status, voltage, and port usage. On the inverter side, the station comes equipped with a small LED. This light is plenty strong and comes in very useful in the field. It doesn’t draw a lot of power and can last for hours even on very low batteries.
The CAME-TV power station with two v-mount batteries (charges one after the other)
This is a very versatile unit since it can charge multiple accessories at the same time. We were able to charge two laptops, two phones, and a tablet at the same time (the 2 batteries only gave a percentage of charge to each device).
When connected to AC power, we tried to maximize the ports to see how many accessories we can charge at the same time. With a total of 8 devices charging and running, our power draw was only 70W.
Another very useful application of this power station is being able to power non-battery lights in the field by plugging into the inverter sockets. We were able to power a 150W CameTV LED at 100% for an hour with the two CameTV 90Wh batteries (only about 20 minutes with one battery). [For reference, with other 150W LEDs this setup gave up to 1.5 hours of runtime.]
Using the Power Station AC connectors to power a 150W LED
When it comes to charging accessories, it’s important to mention that the Power Station is more designed to provide power in the field, so you can’t use it to charge any accessories by just plugging it into AC power. The unit requires at least one battery to power on – to us this might be its biggest drawback in the studio but if you already have plenty of V-mount batteries you might not care.
Powered by two batteries, the power station can put out a maximum of 180W of power at the same time. It’s also hot-swappable, so you can keep your devices and accessories running continuously for prolonged periods of time.
In our tests with the CameTV batteries, the charging time on this power station was significantly longer (4 hours vs 2 hours on our regular V-mount charger). The station only charges one battery at a time.
Useful light in the back
The Came-TV Power Station is an innovative and versatile product that can come in very handy in different productions in the field, and even for camping and general purposes. While it doesn’t offer fast charging and there may be some issues with the sockets with heavier adaptors, we still think that it can be extremely useful.
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