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How to get better battery life (OMD)

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by gardengirl13, Jul 30, 2012.

  1. gardengirl13

    gardengirl13 Mu-43 Veteran

    Jun 26, 2012
    My OMD is only getting about 2-3 hours of life and maybe 250-275 shots. I don't want the grip. I won't mind quite so much once I get my new batteries, but this seems so short to me! I use it 2 1/2 hours then it sits on the charger for 3+. Seems like such a waste. Sure I'm comparing it to my 60D which I wouldn't only charge maybe once a month and took less then two hours to charge, but this seems so bad to me. Doing a day long activity it'll be a pain (but do-able) to change the battery two or three times, but personally I think I shouldn't have to. It should last all day, or at least only one change.

    In winter I take star trails photos, sometimes ranging 1-3 hours. I do NOT have time to take the camera off the tripod, unscrew the plate, take the battery out, put a new one in then get it all set up again. When shooting these photos I don't even have a couple of seconds to spare between shots to keep the trails without spaces. I don't do these all the time, but I'd really like to try to do them with the OMD.

    Any suggestions?
  2. Bhupinder2002

    Bhupinder2002 Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Buy Bunch of batteries if u dont want the grip . I am sure some high power will hit the market soon.
  3. mattia

    mattia Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 3, 2012
    The Netherlands
    Turn off the screen if you're only using the EVF.
  4. TDP

    TDP Guest

    EVF plus LCD plus crazy gyro thingies suck up some juice. Use just the EVF and turn the camera off when you may have used to let it just go to sleep might help.
  5. dhazeghi

    dhazeghi Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 6, 2010
    San Jose, CA
    Aside from getting a bunch of generic batteries, and making sure the camera is off (or at least in power-save mode) when you're not shooting, there's not that much that you can do. The slow recharge issue is a problem Olympus has had for quite a while. The disadvantage of using an EVF/LCD is that the sensor is constantly running when the camera is on. I suspect if you shot the 60D in LV mode for several hours, you'd probably not get very good battery life either...

  6. Using the VF-2 eye-level viewfinder on the Pens results in decreased battery life, so I imagine it would be the same with the E-M5 viewfinder as well. The eye sensor should help here because the EVF will only be powered when it is placed against your eye.
  7. cookme

    cookme Mu-43 Regular

    May 25, 2012
    I have got up to around 600 on a good day with the OEM battery. Average is about 450 shots per charge. I don't turn the camera on and off too much, but here are few things I do to save power:

    1. EVF always on, no LCD (although I think the LCD is always on anyway, but just black? not sure)
    2. no lens reset between power cycles
    3. no full time auto focus, using S-AF+M most of the time
    4. IS kicks in only at full shutter press, not half-press
    5. power saving set to 1 min sleep, 30 min power off
    6. EVF at normal frame rate
    7. use manual zoom as much as possible, if the lens has power zoom
  8. gardengirl13

    gardengirl13 Mu-43 Veteran

    Jun 26, 2012
    OK I'll try turning the LCD off as a few have suggested, I only use it for the super menu thingy and some bug macro.

    #2 not sure what that means?
    3- I use S-AF+MF
    4- I'll have to see about changing this. I think it may be set up that way but I'm not 100% sure
    5- I have it set to 5 mins and 30 min I VERY rarely let it sleep on it's own, if I'm done for a bit I turn it off manually

    Will there be a higher power (meaning longer lasting) battery coming out? Can they do that? If so I'm all over it!
  9. smartwombat

    smartwombat Mu-43 Regular

    Jul 16, 2012
    There is an AC adaptor for the camera, so you can power it continuously.
    Seems odd to go from 12V to a 240V inverter and then back through the camera AC adaptor - but that's one way.
    The other would be to completely invalidate the warranty and make up a DC power supply from a 12V battery that would supply the same voltage as the AC-DC adaptor does.
  10. cookme

    cookme Mu-43 Regular

    May 25, 2012
    2. menu -> A(AF/MF) -> Reset Lens = off
    3. menu -> A(AF/MF) -> Full-time AF = off

    As for a higher capacity battery... I won't get any hopes up. Olympus can't even ship the regular battery, at least not in the US...
  11. dino8031

    dino8031 Mu-43 Regular

    Jan 27, 2012
    Boulder, Colorado
    I'm also coming from a 60D and find the limited battery life very annoying on the EM-5. I never got less then 1000 shots out of a Canon battery.
  12. David A

    David A Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 30, 2011
    Brisbane, Australia
    Tried that, turned the screen back on. The problem: you don't get the choice of viewfinder views if you turn the screen off. I use the second option with limited data available on a back background below a slightly smaller image. Turning the screen off gives you only the viewfinder view that mimics the screen with all sorts of info plastered over the image area.

    If Olympus would do a firmware update to let you still choose from the same 3 viewfinder options when the screen is turned off, I'd turn the screen off again in a flash. As a spectacles wearer I appreciate the slightly smaller image because I can see the whole of it easily, and it's nice not having info plastered over the image. When the image takes up full screen space I have difficulty seeing all the edges and I tend to end up with things in my shots that I didn't intend to include.
  13. gardengirl13

    gardengirl13 Mu-43 Veteran

    Jun 26, 2012
    Me too. For my star photos it could be 10 degrees outside and I'd have the camera on for over four hours and it wouldn't even be half drained. I got "yelled" at on another forum for complaining about battery life. :rolleyes:  but it's frustrating!!

    I'm going to look into the AC adapter. I do some trails in my front yard and have a plug nearby. But when I'm out elsewhere it'll be an issue.

    Here's what I want to do

    this one is from my front yard
    Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)

    Here are some I'm looking to reshoot

    Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)

    Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)

    Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)

    Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
    • Like Like x 2
  14. Bill Gordon

    Bill Gordon Mu-43 Top Veteran

    If you are using an Oly camera and an Oly battery with that combo you should be getting more time than you outlined. I would suggest you get the camera and battery checked out before you do anything else!!
  15. Bill Gordon

    Bill Gordon Mu-43 Top Veteran

    .....and by the way...nice shots!!
    • Like Like x 1
  16. Mikefellh

    Mikefellh Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jun 7, 2012
    Toronto, Canada
    This stops the lens from being retracted when powered off! Personally I prefer leaving this on!
    • Like Like x 1
  17. nueces snapper

    nueces snapper Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nice shots. :bravo-009: It was mentioned but briefly. You can get an inverter for your car. Small box the size of two cigarette packs that plugs into your power outlet in the vehicle. Then You plug your camera adapter into that. Or use an extension cord between the two to get further away from the vehicle. :smile:
    • Like Like x 1
  18. cookme

    cookme Mu-43 Regular

    May 25, 2012
    ...forgot to mention, OFF if you use internal zoom lenses. :smile:
    • Like Like x 1
  19. mattia

    mattia Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 3, 2012
    The Netherlands
    Question: have you sold off the Canon kit? Because, well, there are going to be some things (like this) that DSLRs with their far better battery life will outperform MFT bodies for. Weight is a non-issue unless you're hiking to the location you're shooting star trails. Other than that, the camera is on a tripod.
  20. kinlau

    kinlau Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Feb 29, 2012
    Battery life is the weakest link for m43 cameras. That the EVF or LCD needs to stay on for the whole exposure kills the battery life. Having both the EVF/LCD + sensor live when you're not even shooting doesn't help either. I simply turn the camera off very often with all three of my m43 cameras, or have the sleep mode come on in 1 min.
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