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Nikon EN-EL15 Question

Discussion in 'Other Systems' started by Replytoken, Jun 11, 2016.

  1. Replytoken

    Replytoken Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 7, 2012
    Puget Sound
    Ken
    I have a question for those that also own Nikon bodies that use EN-EL15 batteries. I have a very gently used D610 that I purchased from a close friend a year or so ago and have used it on occasion since then. In April, I shot a big event and thought that I charged the battery afterwards (my usual MO after a shoot) and then fired off a few shots later in the month. I went to top off the battery for a recent shoot and the camera was dead. I placed the battery in its charger and got a fast blink (error). I was a bit surprised as this body has about 4,200 shots on the shutter, and much of that was from me over the past year. I did try this battery in a friend's camera and charger and the results were the same, and a borrowed battery did not seem to behave abnormally in my D610. I know that this battery was not one of those that were recalled, but I am puzzled about its premature death. I have two D300 batteries that are almost 8 years old and have given me over 35k shots with little wear and no issues. Anybody else have a similar EN-EL15 issue?

    --Ken

    P.S. The battery is marked as a Li-Ion 20 manufactured by Nikon (as opposed to those manufactured and marked with Sony)
     
  2. Bif

    Bif Mu-43 Veteran

    380
    May 28, 2012
    San Angelo TX
    Bruce Foreman
    If you use a battery down to close to depletion then turn the camera off and leave it for long enough, the battery will drain down to total depletion and in most cases will be ruined.

    There is a "safety level" at which a battery in use will cause the camera to shut down before damage can occur, but if the camera is turned off before this "safety level" is reached normal charge drain will continue until the battery is below that "safety level" and in most cases the battery is ruined.

    The ideal state of charge for a battery to be stored is 40% but this may be unrealistic for most of us. I charge mine soon after use and check them every month or two so I don't let them drain down close to "empty" on their own.
     
  3. Replytoken

    Replytoken Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 7, 2012
    Puget Sound
    Ken
    Hi Bruce,

    I do not believe that I left the battery in an almost drained state as my usual MO is to either charge it immediately after a shoot, or the day after if I am home late. I always like a full battery available in case of an unexpected shoot, so Now I cannot say with 100% certainty that I did charge it, but after owning a D300 for 8 years, my habits are pretty ingrained, and I never had this issue with the D300.

    The main reason that I mentioned that specific shoot is that it was an intensive evening and where I shot a few thousand images of a dance competition. Normally when I am out shooting, I do not shoot that many images in that short of a time. But, my E-M1 was also used that evening for quite a period of time without any issues, and my D300 used to fire off a lot when I shot college football games without issue. It could have been battery drain as you have described, but it just seems so unusual for a battery that was used for less than 5k shots. I have a new one on order and am hoping that it was just a fluke, but it did cause me some last minute grief for an out of town shoot.

    --Ken
     
  4. Bif

    Bif Mu-43 Veteran

    380
    May 28, 2012
    San Angelo TX
    Bruce Foreman
    Several questions:

    Was it an original OEM Nikon battery or a 3rd party battery?

    I bought a pair of Wasabi batteries for an Olympus E-P3. One swelled up in the camera and almost ruined the camera. The other died on the fourth use.

    How much time elapsed between that evening of intense use and the time you tried to "top off" the charge?

    Even with the camera turned off there is a constant slight drain on the battery. This drain can take the charge down past the "safety level". When a battery totally depletes it's charge it still tries to deliver and can go into reverse polarity (literally tries to turn itself inside out to "deliver") and this is what damages them

    Or you could simply have had a battery that was not going to last long. I constantly check mine for all 3 cameras to insure they have some level of charge left. And the only 3rd party batteries I buy are the Watson brand sold by B&H, I've had good luck with these in a GH4, G7, and GX7.

    Ordering a new battery was obviously your best bet, but you need to have at least one spare on hand.
     
  5. Replytoken

    Replytoken Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 7, 2012
    Puget Sound
    Ken
    Hi Bruce,

    Thanks for the additional follow-up. The battery was a Nikon EN-EL15 that came with the camera. I only use manufacturer batteries to avoid the issues that you described above. Sometime they work for folks and sometimes they do not, and I just do not want the hassle if they do go bad.

    As I sad my usual MO is to re-charge the battery that night or the next day. Given how many shots I took, it was unlikely that I would not have charged it then. Yes, the batteries do drain to keep the camera's on-board cell charged, and that is one reason that I keep a battery in all of my cameras. Having said that, Nikon's DSLR batteries have pretty large capacities, and I have left them in cameras for a month or two with minimal wear and tear or a drop in capacity as reported by the camera's menu system (as opposed to the battery symbol).

    I am suspecting that it was a bad battery, given that Nikon had trouble with some of earlier productions runs of this particular battery, but I will know when I receive my new battery and start using it. If I still have trouble, then either the camera has an issue, or Nikon is 0/2 on EN-EL15's with me. And yes, I normally have spare batteries, but the D610 is not really my daily camera. I use it when the FF is needed or desired, and usually that does not involve high volume shoots like I did in early April.

    Keeping my fingers crossed that it was just the battery.

    --Ken
     
  6. stratokaster

    stratokaster Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 4, 2011
    Kyiv, Ukraine
    Pavel
    I used to own a Nikon 1 V1 which also uses EN-EL15 batteries. I went through 2 genuine Nikon batteries in 1.5 years. I guess those batteries are just poorly made and/or designed.
     
  7. Replytoken

    Replytoken Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 7, 2012
    Puget Sound
    Ken
    Thanks for the info. Just curious, how much and how often did you shoot with the V1?

    --Ken
     
  8. stratokaster

    stratokaster Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 4, 2011
    Kyiv, Ukraine
    Pavel
    Not very often, I guess I took about 6000 shots with it.
     
  9. Replytoken

    Replytoken Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 7, 2012
    Puget Sound
    Ken
    Thanks! Interesting that these batteries do not seem to take to light use. I do wonder if it was just a bad production run, or if they somehow changed the design, or some combination of both. Either way, the new battery seems to be doing fine so far.

    --Ken