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Which rechargable batteries for a Canon A720IS?
Hi People,.

I'm going to buyt he A720is and all the reviews complain about the slow flash recharge (10 seconds) and the way it chews batteries. I need to get a couple of good AA rechargable batteries (ideally with a charger in one pack). Can you suggest somthing good and would good batteries make the flash recharge quicker?.

Thankss again!..

Comments (11)

Can't help you on the type of rechargeable batteries, but the flash recharge is going to be a matter of camera design. If you could "hop up" the speed of flash recycle time by using a different type of battery, you'd risk frying your camera for the sake of faster flash recycle time. (This by the was was a fairly common practice by some photojournalists with Nikon gear and MD12 motor drives. You could coax a faster drive time out of the unit but fry it in the end.).

'Nice pen, bet you write good stories with it.'..

Comment #1

Maha C9000 charger plus slow self discharge NIMH batteries such as Sanyo Eneloops. See Thomas Distributing if you're in the US. What ever brand of battery you purchase make very sure they're the low self discharge NIMH's.http://www.thomas-distributing.com/maha-mh-c9000-battery-charger.php.

For quicker flash cycle times I think you need a camera that uses 4 AA's instead of 2. Think Canon 6xx class if you have your heart set on Canon...

Comment #2

Get the eneloops and recharger. You won't be disappointed...

Comment #3

TB303 wrote:.

Hi People,I'm going to buyt he A720is and all the reviewscomplain about the slow flash recharge (10 seconds)and the way it chews batteries. I need to get acouple of good AA rechargable batteries (ideally witha charger in one pack). Can you suggest somthinggood and would good batteries make the flashrecharge quicker?.

Whatever type or brand of NiMH battery you use, there won't be much of a difference in recharge time. What will help is to make sure that the batteries are fully charged before starting to use the camera, and make sure that the batteries are in good shape. In other words, don't put together sets of batteries from loose batteries you have on hand, especially if they're more than a year or two old..

This shouldn't be a problem as you're buying new batteries, but get at least four, not two NiMH AA cells. This way it will be convenient to swap your battery set well before the camera displays a "low battery" warning. This is because the time needed to charge the flash isn't constant. It's relatively quick when the batteries are fresh, and the recharge time gets progressively longer the more you use the batteries..

The recharge time is also not quite as bad as you think. According to DPReview's A720IS review :.

Our only complaint - common to all cameras poweredby two AA batteries - is that recycle time (whenshooting at anything other than the wide end of thelens / short distances) can get very long - up to 8seconds if the batteries aren't in tip-top condition..

Http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/canona720is/page3.asp.

Neither the review nor the A720IS's manual gives the recharge time when using fully charged batteries, but if it's 4 seconds, consider swapping battery sets when the recharge time approaches 6 seconds. Unfortunately, small cameras tend to use small, or few batteries, which is why they also tend to have long recharge times..

A nice feature that some cameras have is the ability to stop the flash early if the camera detects that enough light was provided to get a good exposure. Because not all of the flash's energy was used, recharging after these shots will be quicker. Fuji calls this feature "Intelligent Flash". I don't know if Canon's P&S cameras also have this ability. If you can tolerate using one of Canon's slightly larger A6x0 cameras that uses 4 AA cells, the flash recharge time will be considerably better. DPReview hasn't tested the A650 IS, but it reviewed the older A620 and found that the flash recycle time was 2.0 seconds, adding this footnote :.

Flash recycle time varies greatly according to subjectdistance and battery condition. With far off subjectsor low batteries this figure can stretch to 5.0 secondsor more..

Http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/CanonA620/page5.asp..

Comment #4

Billx08 wrote:.

Whatever type or brand of NiMH battery you use, there won't be muchof a difference in recharge time. What will help is to make surethat the batteries are fully charged before starting to use thecamera, and make sure that the batteries are in good shape. In otherwords, don't put together sets of batteries from loose batteries youhave on hand, especially if they're more than a year or two old..

True, don't mix batteries of different age and vintage..

I do disagree that any AA batteries are sufficient. Each have their own specific uses that may work better for some and not others. For instance, if you shoot a few photo's every few days you really do want low discharge batteries. The low discharge batteries will typically have a lower mAH rating than "normal" NIMH batteries. Low discharge types will last longer when you're not using them but they will also have a lower mAH rating. Low discharge batteries may have a rating of 2000 or 2100 mAH, regular NIHM's may have a rating of 2500 or 2700 mAH.



Think of regular NIMH's as a large bucket with large hole in the bottom. Low self discharge NIMH's are slightly smaller bucket with a very much smaller hole in the bottom..

The other end of the battery spectrum are non-rechargeable lithium AA's. These will last longer than one charge of any NIMH AA batteries. They will also perform better in low temperatures (32F, 0C, etc)..

Batteries and chargers do matter depending on individual needs. In general low self discharge batteries such as Eneloops and other brands are a good compromise. Buyer beware though, make sure you're buying low self discharge batteries...

Comment #5

We've been using an A720 IS for twelve months now, and I'd have to disagree with the reviewers that it "chews batteries"..

It certainly doesn't exhaust it's batteries more quickly than any other digital camera  generally speaking. Obviously, again like all other cameras, it depends on how YOU utilise the camera's functions..... LCD on all the time, fully charging the flash repeatedly, using zoom and focus continuously; even the ambient air temperature will affect discharge rates..

Reviewers are notoriously known for getting "real-world" statistics wrong for camera performances  just compare several review sites for the one camera model and you'll learn that very quickly! They simply don't have the time (or sometimes the inclination) to carry out long-term exhaustive testing on a camera..

Likewise, the ten seconds flash recharge time is way overquoted  assuming you're using fully-charged NiMHs of say, at least 2500MAh capacity. We regularly find around 3 to 4 seconds on a good day, to an absolute top of around 7 seconds if the batteries have had a hard day..

Don't be put off getting the A720 IS by reviewers who, at the end of the day, often really don't know what they're talking about (except for THIS site of course LOL)..

Cheers ..

Comment #6

I have a 720IS and it's recharge time is LONG no matter what kind of batteries I use or how fresh they are. When I had the S2 IS it's recharge time was much quicker; it used 4 AA batteries..

So, you are gonna just have to be patient..

I'd try to get batteries specifically designed for cameras instead of just going to the drugstore or Walmart and getting whatever they have on the shelf (don't know if it matters that much but I figured every little bit helps). I got a good deal on Sony rechargeables + the charger on Amazon but that was months ago.TLIII..

Comment #7

Mrxdimension wrote:.

True, don't mix batteries of different age and vintage..

I do disagree that any AA batteries are sufficient..

Actually, *any* AA batteries can be superior, even cheap alkalines. It all depends on how the camera is used. I see that you're aware of this based on what you then followed with :.

Each have their own specific uses that may workbetter for some and not others. For instance, if youshoot a few photo's every few days you really dowant low discharge batteries. The low dischargebatteries will typically have a lower mAH rating than"normal" NIMH batteries. Low discharge types willlast longer when you're not using them but they willalso have a lower mAH rating. Low discharge batteriesmay have a rating of 2000 or 2100 mAH, regularNIHM's may have a rating of 2500 or 2700 mAH.The mAH rating doesn't matter if the higher mAHbatteries discharge quicker without use and youdon't use the camera in the same day you've chargedthe batteries..

I also prefer the low self-discharge "Eneloop" type NiMH batteries, but if I used my photo gear so heavily that I'd have to recharge the batteries (on average) every week or two (or sooner), I'd be better off using high capacity NiMH cells..

Think of regular NIMH's as a large bucket with largehole in the bottom. Low self discharge NIMH's areslightly smaller bucket with a very much smaller holein the bottom..

And think of alkaline batteries as having such a tiny pinhole in the bottom of the bucket that it's leak is almost too small to measure.   A complication is that when used with very low current consumption devices (such as clocks, smoke detectors, etc.), alkalines have a greater capacity than NiMH cells. Many people use their cameras so infrequently, perhaps several dozens of shots per year, that for them, alkalines would be the simplest, most practical type to use..

Most people, though, especially those frequenting these forums, would be best served by using low self-discharge NiMH batteries. Partly because most cameras have current demands that would significantly reduce the capacity of alkalines, and also because when photographers take many hundreds or thousands of shots per year, rechargeable batteries can be much less expensive to use than alkalines..

The other end of the battery spectrum arenon-rechargeable lithium AA's. These will last longerthan one charge of any NIMH AA batteries. They willalso perform better in low temperatures (32F, 0C, etc)..

They can perform much better, but they can be very risky to use, depending on the camera. Canon specifically states in most of their manuals (including the A720IS) that only alkaline or NiMH batteries should be used. Some of their manuals include this warning, copied from their manuals for the Powershot A60 and A70 :.

Never use manganese or lithium batteries, as thesebattery types may overheat in the camera..

Those are older cameras, though. Current models are much more efficient so it's much less likely that the use of lithium batteries would cause them to overheat. Unlike other manufacturers that approve the use of lithium AA batteries, Canon still insists that only alkaline or NiMH should be used. It may only be a CYA warning in the A720IS manual, but until Canon retracts it, I'd avoid using lithium batteries in this model unless absolutely necessary...

Comment #8

I use a 720 I with enloop and love it but the focus gets off when the batteries get low..

Comment #9

Billx08 wrote:.

Never use manganese or lithium batteries, as thesebattery types may overheat in the camera..

Those are older cameras, though. Current models are much moreefficient so it's much less likely that the use of lithium batterieswould cause them to overheat. Unlike other manufacturers thatapprove the use of lithium AA batteries, Canon still insists thatonly alkaline or NiMH should be used. It may only be a CYA warningin the A720IS manual, but until Canon retracts it, I'd avoid usinglithium batteries in this model unless absolutely necessary..

Good point. If the manual says don't use lithium or manganese batteries I would not use them either. Thank you for clarifying...

Comment #10

Mrxdimension wrote:.

Unlike other manufacturers that approve the useof lithium AA batteries, Canon still insists thatonly alkaline or NiMH should be used. It mayonly be a CYA warning in the A720IS manual,but until Canon retracts it, I'd avoid using lithiumbatteries in this model unless absolutely necessary..

Good point. If the manual says don't use lithium ormanganese batteries I would not use them either.Thank you for clarifying..

I guess that my explanation wasn't clear enough, so here's Clarification v2.0. Recent Canon manuals only state that alkalines or NiMH AA cells should be used. It's in the manuals for older Canon P&S cameras that the warnings about using manganese and lithium batteries appear...

Comment #11

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This question was taken from a support group/message board and re-posted here so others can learn from it.

 

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