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05-06-2013, 08:48 AM   #1
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camera batteries with micro-USB port

I'm sure somebody will correct me if I am wrong and this device already exists-

Wouldn't be nice if we could recharge our LiON camera batteries outside our camera using the same charger as we use for our tablets and cell phones? It would be necessary to add a micro-USB port to each battery, which of course would increase the cost, but there would be no need to carry a separate charger when we travel. Adding the port to the camera body might work, but it would tie up our cameras during charging.

One reason I like the AA option on the K-x, K-r and K-30 is I can use one charger for all my AA battery powered devices while travelling. The Pentax LiON charger may not weigh much, but it and its cord are two more items to find packing space for and keep track of.

05-06-2013, 09:00 AM   #2
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Very much agree.

Doing 250K BIS miles/year for work, for a decade now, and every piece of equipment I can shed makes life so much easier.

I always schlep the Q along....and if I expect to get a days layover, also the K-01. That's two battery-bricks that I'd rather be without.
05-06-2013, 12:09 PM   #3
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I don't think that adding an USB connector to the battery is enough. The charger probably contains electronics (a regulator) to make the correct voltage and to limit the current. Li-Ion batteries must be treated very carefully otherwise they will overheat or their lifetime is limited. So you are actually asking to add the electronics from the charger to each battery.
05-06-2013, 12:16 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kobayashi.K Quote
I don't think that adding an USB connector to the battery is enough. The charger probably contains electronics (a regulator) to make the correct voltage and to limit the current. Li-Ion batteries must be treated very carefully otherwise they will overheat or their lifetime is limited. So you are actually asking to add the electronics from the charger to each battery.
Well, yes - but a whole lot less electronics is needed than in a charger: USB delivers 5V DC, vs the 220V AC that we get out of the wall-plugs (or 110V AC, over on the other side of the pond), so that ought to mean substantial miniaturization.

Actually, I would settle for a tiny USB-charger for my camera batteries.....and preferably one charger that could charge them all (for the Q, K, ....).....

05-06-2013, 12:21 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kobayashi.K Quote
I don't think that adding an USB connector to the battery is enough.
I agree, but I also believe the rest of the necessary circuitry could be easily replicated within the battery. I should also point out that I really don't expect this to happen with batteries for existing Pentax camera gear. Even miniaturized, the components will need some space within the battery shell that doesn't currently exist. But it should be possible for equipment designers to create batteries and battery slots to do exactly this.
05-06-2013, 12:27 PM   #6
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JimJohnson has a fair point, and I agree that a small USB charger would certainly be an improvement.
An annoying factor is that almost every camera has its own battery type, charger and AC adapter. They should normalize that, probably by making a small standard battery and to add several of them to a camera when more capacity is needed. I think that is technically possible because you can also combine a Li-Ion battery with AA batteries in a grip (K5).
05-06-2013, 02:40 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by tclausen Quote
Doing 250K BIS miles/year for work
Good grief, as we say here "You'll never be off the head of the road".

Do you get time in your travels for photography opportunities as well as work?

05-06-2013, 02:46 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by kerrowdown Quote
Good grief, as we say here "You'll never be off the head of the road".

Do you get time in your travels for photography opportunities as well as work?
I am making a concerted effort to this effect, yes. I see it as an opportunity, to get to go places I'd otherwise not get to be, and my employer is understanding enough to let me pad 1/2-1 day on trips (if possible) without it coming out of vacations.....

Also, for domestic tranquility (& mental sanity), I make a policy of when "being there" to /really/ be there.....

(For the record, the 250Kmiles/year reflects the infamous "recession"...a few years back, and I'd be doing 3x that....)
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