Regardless of the manufacturer or model – across the board – one of the biggest complaints you’ll read with digital cameras
is that they drain batteries at an unbelievably fast rate. When I purchased my HP Photosmart M415 5.2 Megapixel, I wanted to buy what I believed to be the best and longest lasting batteries. From the reviews I’d read on-line and from the various manufacturer’s websites, I believed this to be the Energizer e2. These batteries are made from lithium, and tested to last up to 7 times longer than a standard alkaline battery. Users who had taken the time to give an on-line review, had predominantly ranked the batteries very high. So, I purchased a 4-pack of the Energizer e2 double A batteries at Wal-Mart for $16.84, which seemed high to me, but if they last 7 times longer than standard alkaline, I reasoned the price wasn’t ridiculously high. Before I even left the Wal-Mart parking lot, I had the package ripped open and 2 of the new batteries dropped into my camera. Now I would actually be able to fill my memory card with the 70 shots it held before my batteries died!
By the 53rd shot, my “low battery” warning was flashing on the screen. Now, I do admit, I had been using the flash. I had the camera set for it’s maximum quality and image size as well. But I expected considerably more from a battery that cost $4.21 each! This was an improvement over the regular alkaline batteries I’d bought in the past – but for that price – I could afford almost 3 times as many alkaline batteries! So, all I saved myself was the time it took to change out batteries, I hadn’t really saved any money. I continued to experiment, by not using the flash I could fill my memory card once at the camera’s maximum quality and image size setting. I could fill the card twice at a lower setting. But the end result was the same – when you consider the cost of 2 Energizer e2 batteries at $8.42 – I could have purchased the 6 regular alkaline batteries that it would have required for the same amount. All I was really saving was the time it took to change batteries.
Arguably, cameras vary to some extent on the power they require to operate all of their functions. It is also a fact that different brands of regular alkaline batteries vary greatly in their duration of charge and in their price. However, it was my camera I was concerned about! My camera had not performed any better, or cheaper, on the Energizer e2 batteries than it had on the regular Energizer alkaline batteries that I was purchasing for $3.08 per 4-pack. There simply had to be a better solution! My first thought was a power cord. I ran right out and purchased a Digital Concepts Switching power Supply Model CH-999 for $14.95. This was great, if I wanted to take pictures in the house, no more than 4 feet from a power plug, or inside my car while connected to the cigarette lighter. Not the solution I was looking for! Was it so very much to ask that I find an affordable and lasting power source for my digital camera? My lap top computer had a long lasting battery. My camcorder had a long lasting battery. My watch hadn’t needed a battery in 11 years. What was wrong with this picture was that my battery was running out before I even had the picture!
As luck would have it, my son was in desperate need of rechargeable batteries and a charger for his handheld game console. I was in a hurry, so I grabbed the cheapest thing I saw in Wal-Mart, a Rayovac battery charger that came with 2 AA rechargeable batteries and 2 AAA rechargeable batteries for $19.98. My son only needed the AAA’s, and as usual, my camera’s batteries were dead so I popped the two AA’s in. I filled the memory card, without using a flash, and didn’t get the “low battery” warning. Impressive, but I’d had the same happen with both the Energizer AA and Duracel AA batteries. So, I continued to press my luck. I switched to flash and started snapping away. I again filled the memory card – with using the flash – and still no “low battery” warning! Could this be real? Again, I emptied the card and continued to snap. I finally got the “low battery” warning on the 3rd fill of the memory card using the flash. This was beyond impressive – this was miraculous! For the money, I would never use or recommend anything but the Rayovac Battery Charger and rechargeable batteries in my digital camera!