Rechargeable batteries can spoil your Speedlights?...


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chouk

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Apr 15, 2006
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#1
Is it true that using thos rechargeable batteries spoil your speedlight?( it can blow up the bulb)
I currently use a sb-600 speed light and was recommended to use Alkaline batteries rather than those rechargeable 2500 mAh.
Anyone has his opinion on that?.. what kind of batteries do u guys usually use for your speedlights.
 

Feb 2, 2006
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#2
i dont think so, rechargeable batteries have a weaker voltage, ie 1.2v compared to 1.5v of alkaline batteries. in this aspect, there is no way a weaker voltage can blow the bulbs because 1.5v would produce a brighter light
 

Artosoft

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Aug 31, 2005
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#3
chouk said:
Is it true that using thos rechargeable batteries spoil your speedlight?( it can blow up the bulb)
I currently use a sb-600 speed light and was recommended to use Alkaline batteries rather than those rechargeable 2500 mAh.
Anyone has his opinion on that?.. what kind of batteries do u guys usually use for your speedlights.
First, the one that produce strong flash light is flash's tube/neon lamp, not a bulb ;) .

Don't worry, there is a regulator voltage circuit to regulate voltage entering the flash's circuit. So, Alkaline, NiMH, NiCD battery is not a problem.

The only possible problem is: because you can have faster recycle rate by using NiMH, you can burn the flash's tube easily if you never let it cool down (when you shoot using continues mode, D200->5fps, say 30s continuesly). But, this could happend too on alkaline battery.

Regards,
Arto.
 

yyD70S

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Dec 25, 2005
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#4
Have been using rechargeables on external flashes for the many years and so far no problem.
 

Dec 9, 2005
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#5
There is no way the batteries can blow the flash tube, because the batteries are used to charge up the capacitor which in turn, when discharged produces the flash. The only thing that the higher voltage will do is make your recycle time faster, if at all.
 

yanyewkay

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Sep 22, 2004
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#6
either way, it is yes and no.

The flash tube while strobing away will require voltages way over the supplied 6v from your batts. So the 1.2 and 1.5v is not really a big issue.

In a way, 'yes' you can damage it faster if you use batteries that can provide a faster recharge rate to the flash. Becos you can fire faster, the flash element gets hot and remains hot and will may just blow off because you were trigger happy.

If you apply the same, theory, then can you say that external battery packs that shorten your recycle time to 1sec (or less :sweat: ) is 'bad' for your flash as it will spoil your flash filament faster if you keep firing it at 8fps non stop. But it doesn't make any more sense to use weak batteries and limit your recycle time to 10sec to 'protect' your flash. :dunno:

anyway, who suggested those ideas to you?
 

slaam

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Aug 29, 2004
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#7
darn firign flash repeatedly can spoil the tube?
i am using a slave sensor so the flash fires together with the preflash a few times so its prob abt 3fps.. so it will shorten the flash's lifespan?
 

yanyewkay

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Sep 22, 2004
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#8
firing repeatedly for a sustained period of time will spoil it. There's always a recommended usage. There was a fashion shoot last year or before when a photog was firing his pro-body at max fps and his flash tube fused.

Most manuals will state "after firing xx shots consecutively, allow the flash to rest for yy seconds before shooting again."
 

Caspere

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Jul 27, 2003
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#9
yanyewkay said:
firing repeatedly for a sustained period of time will spoil it. There's always a recommended usage. There was a fashion shoot last year or before when a photog was firing his pro-body at max fps and his flash tube fused.

Most manuals will state "after firing xx shots consecutively, allow the flash to rest for yy seconds before shooting again."
Wow! Fused? No explosion? No smoke?
 

mpenza

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Jan 18, 2002
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#11
yanyewkay said:
firing repeatedly for a sustained period of time will spoil it. There's always a recommended usage. There was a fashion shoot last year or before when a photog was firing his pro-body at max fps and his flash tube fused.

Most manuals will state "after firing xx shots consecutively, allow the flash to rest for yy seconds before shooting again."
Do you know whether it's a Canon or Nikon flash (or 3rd party)? I knew someone's flash (SB800) got fried after firing consecutively too (it was powered by a external battery pack which provided almost instant recharge). If I'm not wrong, Canon flash has a built-in safety mechanism (at least for the 580EX) that prevents the flash from firing if it's overheated.
 

mpenza

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Jan 18, 2002
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#12
+evenstar said:
alkalines last longer than rechargeables. that's the only advantage i can think of..
Not necessary. The large capacity of current NiMHs could allow them to match if not last longer than alkalines.
 

Artosoft

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Aug 31, 2005
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#13
+evenstar said:
alkalines last longer than rechargeables. that's the only advantage i can think of..
Errr,

Last time is correct and true.

But, technology for alkalines looks stagnant. While technology for rechargeables (NiMH) is (slowly but sure) improving.

From SB800's manual page 121:
Minimum number of flashes as follows:
- Alkaline-Manganese x 4 ==> 130 times.
- NiMH x 4 ==> 150 times.

Somemore, NiMH in the manual is 2000mAH. Now 2700mAH NiMH can be found in the market.

Yes, it is true Alkalines last longer than rechargeables, if you use problematic rechargeable Sanyo 2500mAH :bsmilie: .

Regards,
Arto.
 

yowch

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Oct 16, 2002
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#15
Just put a little logic into the situation, if rechargeables are bad for the flash, wouldn't professionals who fire millions of shots not use rechargeables? But from my unsupported understanding, almost everyone uses rechargeables for flash, be it AA or battery pack. Suppose that the SB600 has a life expectancy of 10000 shots and you get 8000 shots due to using rechargeables, would you miss the flash more or the money you would have spent on alkalines more?

I'll stick to my rechargeables.
 

chouk

New Member
Apr 15, 2006
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#17
interesting things that i'm learning. So it's kind of true if we abuse the batteries for continous shots..

btw, i have to appologize for creating this thread in the wrong forum. I had 2 windows opened, and i wrongly replied in this one. sorry for that.
 

mpenza

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Jan 18, 2002
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#18
yowch said:
Just put a little logic into the situation, if rechargeables are bad for the flash, wouldn't professionals who fire millions of shots not use rechargeables? But from my unsupported understanding, almost everyone uses rechargeables for flash, be it AA or battery pack. Suppose that the SB600 has a life expectancy of 10000 shots and you get 8000 shots due to using rechargeables, would you miss the flash more or the money you would have spent on alkalines more?

I'll stick to my rechargeables.
be kind ;p not everyone know what pros are using lah.
 

yanyewkay

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Sep 22, 2004
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#19
mpenza said:
Do you know whether it's a Canon or Nikon flash (or 3rd party)? I knew someone's flash (SB800) got fried after firing consecutively too (it was powered by a external battery pack which provided almost instant recharge). If I'm not wrong, Canon flash has a built-in safety mechanism (at least for the 580EX) that prevents the flash from firing if it's overheated.
IIRC, it was a SB800.
 

theRBK

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May 16, 2005
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#20
+evenstar said:
alkalines last longer than rechargeables. that's the only advantage i can think of..
current technology NiMh rechargeables have more power and can power more flash discharges, but they self discharge over time, so in this sense, alkalines which don't self discharge much last longer... :)

remember to charge your NiMh batteries before your shoot :)
 

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