Ever pull out your camcorder to shoot some video, only to find that your power packs are pooped out? Sure you have. Don’t miss that big shot because your battery conks out too quickly. These five tips will help you keep the power pumping so you can capture every frame, without fail.
1. Go Manual
Your camcorder’s automatic focus and iris controls are a major drain on your batteries. Your automatic focus and iris will keep churning whether you are recording or not. Going manual will not only give you more control over the quality of your content, it will save precious power.
2. Take Two
(or Three) If you don’t have a second battery, get one! Keep one on the charger so you’ll always have another battery fully prepped when you need it. Instead of tossing your tired battery into your camera bag, swap it for the one on the charger. A third, fully juiced brick is a good idea for long, power-consuming video shoots.
3. Go Big
Get the biggest battery that will fit your camcorder. Small, thin power packs are light and cute, but they won’t get you through long shoots. A single big battery can take the place of two little ones. For the ultimate in big batteries, look into a battery belt. Just be careful to verify compatibility with your camcorder before you buy.
4. Save Between Shots
Depending on what and where you are shooting, you may have cause to pause for several minutes between shots. Switching to ‘stand-by’ or ‘off’ when you aren’t recording can save you several minutes of battery life.
5. Buy New Batteries
If you’ve had your batteries for awhile, they may not seem to last as long as they used to. Maybe that’s because they don’t. Older NiCAD batteries fare worse than newer types, but face it, nothing lasts forever. Your rechargeable camcorder batteries have a limited life span. If your batteries expire quickly, it may be time to bite the bullet and buy more batteries.