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Author Topic: is there a way to test dvd batteries?  (Read 5029 times)

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Offline justink

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is there a way to test dvd batteries?
« on: January 02, 2012, 06:23:13 PM »
i have four dvd batteries.  i typically carry two to each show (one for the V3 and one for the R-44).

i think i've noticed one or two of them to start to fade.  is there a cheap way to test them to see which of the four are the strongest?

i do have hot swap power cables, i might just have to start running/carrying all four at once.
Mics:
DPA 4028 (wide cards)
DPA 4023 (cards)
Earthworks TC25 (omnis) 

Pres and a/d's:
Oade ACM Grace Lunatec V3 (FOR SALE - Make Offer)
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Recorders:
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Offline illconditioned

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Re: is there a way to test dvd batteries?
« Reply #1 on: January 02, 2012, 06:27:48 PM »
Simplest way is to fully charge each one, and run it down with your rig.   See how much time you get.

Note also that sometimes a battery will quit if you draw too much current (or short it).  Then you have to unplug-plug the outtput connector to "reset" it.

If you can get two reliable ones, just bring them both to your show.  You've got a backup in case one quits.

 Richard
Please DO NOT mail me with tech questions.  I will try to answer in the forums when I get a chance.  Thanks.

Sample recordings at: http://www.soundmann.com.

Offline justink

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Re: is there a way to test dvd batteries?
« Reply #2 on: January 02, 2012, 07:34:22 PM »
Simplest way is to fully charge each one, and run it down with your rig.   See how much time you get.

Note also that sometimes a battery will quit if you draw too much current (or short it).  Then you have to unplug-plug the outtput connector to "reset" it.

If you can get two reliable ones, just bring them both to your show.  You've got a backup in case one quits.

 Richard

That's what i was planning on doing (testing with the rig), but thought there might be a less time consuming way (some sort of voltage meter i could get at ratshack or something).
Mics:
DPA 4028 (wide cards)
DPA 4023 (cards)
Earthworks TC25 (omnis) 

Pres and a/d's:
Oade ACM Grace Lunatec V3 (FOR SALE - Make Offer)
bm2p+ Edirol UA-5 (FOR SALE - Make Offer)

Recorders:
Oade CM Edirol R-44
Sony PCM‑M10

Offline it-goes-to-eleven

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Re: is there a way to test dvd batteries?
« Reply #3 on: January 03, 2012, 09:59:23 AM »
Most of those batteries have built-in voltage regulators.  The voltage stays fairly constant as the battery discharges.  So you can't use it to test the battery.

Your best test might be a constant load and observing the number of LEDs that light when you press the test button at specific intervals - every fifteen minutes, etc.

I see two symptoms of impending failure with those batteries.  The main one is increased self discharge.  After you charge the battery, it discharges on its own.  So after a couple days, or a week, it will be down an LED.  Or even dead.  That is a symptom that your battery is on it's way out and you may not want to trust it.  Still, I've seen those batteries magically stop doing that.  So it doesn't necessarily mean it's done.  The second is shorter run times.

All lithium batteries should be handled gently and never dropped.  That's for safety and also longevity.  Storing them in a cool place, even a fridge, will extend their life.  Lithium batteries wear out even if you don't use them.  Ideally, store them at less than a full charge.  60 or 80%.  Storing them at a full charge shortens their life a bit.  When using them, keep them cool - keep them away from gear that generates heat.  Heat shortens their life.

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kirk97132

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Re: is there a way to test dvd batteries?
« Reply #4 on: January 03, 2012, 11:44:27 AM »
I have a stack of DVD batteries and number them so that if I notice something I can keep an eye on the suspect battery.  It has allowed me to pull out a battery that keeps being problematic.  The only other thing that I've done is to actually pry open the case on a brand new battery I recently purchased.  Fresh out of the plastic sales case it charged but had zero voltage, once I opened it it was readily apparent the batteries were bad.  You could see the leaking and discolored batteries.  You can purchase the replacements but I have not done that yet.

Offline justink

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Re: is there a way to test dvd batteries?
« Reply #5 on: January 03, 2012, 12:23:36 PM »
Most of those batteries have built-in voltage regulators.  The voltage stays fairly constant as the battery discharges.  So you can't use it to test the battery.

Your best test might be a constant load and observing the number of LEDs that light when you press the test button at specific intervals - every fifteen minutes, etc.

I see two symptoms of impending failure with those batteries.  The main one is increased self discharge.  After you charge the battery, it discharges on its own.  So after a couple days, or a week, it will be down an LED.  Or even dead.  That is a symptom that your battery is on it's way out and you may not want to trust it.  Still, I've seen those batteries magically stop doing that.  So it doesn't necessarily mean it's done.  The second is shorter run times.

All lithium batteries should be handled gently and never dropped.  That's for safety and also longevity.  Storing them in a cool place, even a fridge, will extend their life.  Lithium batteries wear out even if you don't use them.  Ideally, store them at less than a full charge.  60 or 80%.  Storing them at a full charge shortens their life a bit.  When using them, keep them cool - keep them away from gear that generates heat.  Heat shortens their life.

good advice here.
Mics:
DPA 4028 (wide cards)
DPA 4023 (cards)
Earthworks TC25 (omnis) 

Pres and a/d's:
Oade ACM Grace Lunatec V3 (FOR SALE - Make Offer)
bm2p+ Edirol UA-5 (FOR SALE - Make Offer)

Recorders:
Oade CM Edirol R-44
Sony PCM‑M10

Offline Fried Chicken Boy

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Re: is there a way to test dvd batteries?
« Reply #6 on: January 03, 2012, 07:16:13 PM »
You can purchase the replacements but I have not done that yet.

Are you talking about the individual batteries inside the DVD battery housing?

Offline justink

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Re: is there a way to test dvd batteries?
« Reply #7 on: January 03, 2012, 07:21:40 PM »
You can purchase the replacements but I have not done that yet.

Are you talking about the individual batteries inside the DVD battery housing?

no, that would be way too much work i figure.

i already have hot swap cables.  i think i'm just going to run two batteries at a time to each unit (four total).  it all seems to fit in my bag okay, so why not?  should ease my mind a bit that way.
Mics:
DPA 4028 (wide cards)
DPA 4023 (cards)
Earthworks TC25 (omnis) 

Pres and a/d's:
Oade ACM Grace Lunatec V3 (FOR SALE - Make Offer)
bm2p+ Edirol UA-5 (FOR SALE - Make Offer)

Recorders:
Oade CM Edirol R-44
Sony PCM‑M10

Offline Fried Chicken Boy

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Re: is there a way to test dvd batteries?
« Reply #8 on: January 03, 2012, 07:40:39 PM »
^^ I hear you, Justink.  But with the price of new DVD batteries upwards of $50-$60 (jeez, I remember when they were $10!) it could be a worthwhile endeavor to replace the "guts" if they are available and reasonably priced.  Definitely something I'd like to know more about.

Offline illconditioned

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Re: is there a way to test dvd batteries?
« Reply #9 on: January 03, 2012, 08:15:30 PM »
^^ Don't mess with Lithium cells.  They are a fire/explosion hazard if shorted (or damaged).

  Richard
Please DO NOT mail me with tech questions.  I will try to answer in the forums when I get a chance.  Thanks.

Sample recordings at: http://www.soundmann.com.

Offline justink

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Re: is there a way to test dvd batteries?
« Reply #10 on: January 04, 2012, 02:05:38 PM »
^^ Don't mess with Lithium cells.  They are a fire/explosion hazard if shorted (or damaged).

  Richard

yeah, last thing i need is my entire bag going up in smoke at a show and evacuating the venue.  :lol
Mics:
DPA 4028 (wide cards)
DPA 4023 (cards)
Earthworks TC25 (omnis) 

Pres and a/d's:
Oade ACM Grace Lunatec V3 (FOR SALE - Make Offer)
bm2p+ Edirol UA-5 (FOR SALE - Make Offer)

Recorders:
Oade CM Edirol R-44
Sony PCM‑M10

Offline phanophish

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Re: is there a way to test dvd batteries?
« Reply #11 on: January 04, 2012, 09:01:50 PM »
I pulled one apart a while back.  It was, shall we say, a challenge.  The adhesive reminds me of silicone caulk and is very strong.

Pretty simple.  6 18650 LiIon cells, connected in series to the voltage regulator.  My experience has been that the regulator dies or no longer properly charges the cells.  Not sure if it is from sitting an extend time and running the cells too low or an actual electronic failure in the regulator/charge board.  The replacement cells can be found in the $3-7each range. 






Personally I'm looking at some of the LiPo batteries designed for RC car use.  The plus is they are failry affordable in high capacitys, are very small and lightweight.  The drawback is they are even more volatile than LiIon batts, are more sensitive to over charging/over discharge, drain while in storage, and require a more advanced charger.  You also must have a device that has some flexibility on input voltages as each cell produces 3.7 volts and you don't have a voltage regulator in between to even things out.   I've got some electronics on the way to build a pack that will give me voltage and current draw hopefully.  I'll share on TS if I'm happy with the results.
« Last Edit: January 04, 2012, 09:06:05 PM by phanophish »
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Offline illconditioned

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Re: is there a way to test dvd batteries?
« Reply #12 on: January 04, 2012, 09:54:30 PM »
Thanks for the photos.  It is amazing all the electronics in there.

  Richard
Please DO NOT mail me with tech questions.  I will try to answer in the forums when I get a chance.  Thanks.

Sample recordings at: http://www.soundmann.com.

Offline it-goes-to-eleven

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Re: is there a way to test dvd batteries?
« Reply #13 on: January 04, 2012, 10:13:06 PM »
Thanks for the photos.  I've been saying for years that the power that comes out of those regulated batteries isn't necessarily clean, and it can interfere with quiet recordings.  You have to be careful about cable routing, etc.

In contrast, non-regulated batteries don't have that particular issue.

New product - Get your NEUMANN active mounting bars
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stevetoney

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Re: is there a way to test dvd batteries?
« Reply #14 on: January 09, 2012, 04:10:20 PM »

yeah, last thing i need is my entire bag going up in smoke at a show and evacuating the venue.  :lol

Oh, it wasn't such a big deal when it happened to me last year...TWICE.  ;) 

Queue up a response from Bean right about now.

 

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