dean harrington visual

BP-U65 Battery review continued ...

BP-U65 Main topBP-U65 D-TAP sideBP-U65 USB2 sideBP-U65 Bottom
I've done further testing of the BP-U65 battery with Samsung cells. All the batteries I have received are 100% operational. The time readout on the on-camera monitor stabilises the count down at 320 minutes on the EX3 after several battery charge and dis-charge cycles … however … when you engage D-TAP, zoom, iris and other functions the time read-out will change which will effect the charge time in battery use. The Sony FS7 requires 19 volts and the fine folks at ARK VIDEO RENTAL in Tokyo allowed me to measure the battery on the camera when I brought it in to fit and test the BP-U65 battery. ARK provides Sony BP-U60 batteries when they rent out the FS7 so, those batteries and the BP-U65 Samsung cell batteries work fine on that camera. Even though the FS7 stabilised at 328 minutes (that will surely change for each battery and be less with it's 19 watt requirements … further testing is required) when turning the camera on and letting it run for 15 minutes or so, the same usage count down is dependant on what the camera is doing and whether you are using D-TAP as well. The only thing I've been able to confirm with the BP-U65 with Samsung cells is that the cells put out a stable count down from testing once the charge read out stabilises. Initial read-outs vary when you first insert the battery but that stabilises very quickly which means the battery decodes are basically sound. My Sony old BP-U60 battery stabilises at 250 minutes on the on camera read out (with the EX3 camera not recording) but we all know it only lasts for about 2 hours 30 minutes in actual use. The new BP-U65 stabilises for 5 hours of use on the EX3 (no functions … just camera turned on) … I'm still wondering how and why that is and why the on camera tests measure such a read out time when confirmed by timing with a second clock?

Why do I concern myself with having the on camera monitor read out? I have used SWIT S-BU62 14.4v 63Wh Li-ion batteries with D-TAP to run the EX3 + NanoFlash recorder since I first bought the EX3 camera but the SWIT plugs into the power connection at the side of the camera and does not work with the Sony FS7 camcorder. I have no read out possibilities with the SWIT and have had to trust my experience (estimation) on the charge count down … a very dangerous thing to do when you are using that battery on a shoot.
Chinese battery manufacturers are moving ahead very quickly … a far cry from 10 years ago. I still have problems with relying on the Chinese cell structures of these various manufacturers hence my own preference for Samsung cells and the quality of the battery cells are all you have to rely on when using batteries on professional cameras (Sony batteries with D-TAP capabilities are not available … if I'm wrong let me know).

Considering what I've found on my tests as relative at this point, I can say that with this battery you can: operate the PB-U65 on the Sony FS7 camera, get a stable monitor charge readout, get power usage that is at least comparable to Sony batteries or the SWIT S-BU62, simultaneously operate a camera + D-TAP that runs any machine (up to 14.4v 30 watts) and charge the battery on Sony's BC-U1/BC-U2 battery chargers.
all the best

BP-U65 Battery (OEM) with D-TAP/USB 2 for Sony PMW HD + PXW FS7 XD Cameras

I don't know if you are like me but when you own several cameras you surely buy a lot of different batteries. So, I was mulling over the new Sony PXW FS7 camera as my next upgrade which has a S35 CMOS sensor with 4K/2K and XAVC recording options … the perfect camera for a one-man-band camera operator.
I also have the Nano-Flash to record 422 HD from my Sony EX3 camera which has been a very stable camera for event and documentary work. I will be in need of a battery with D-TAP that can run both units on the EX3 and run similar on-camera recorder/monitor options for the FS7.

I went on the hunt in the Fall of 2014 to find a reliable and trustworthy battery manufacturer who makes on-camera monitor charge read-out batteries for Sony cameras that included a D-TAP connection. I found one in China and as most of you know, China makes most of the batteries for major brands on the market today. I have a lot of experience with off-brand batteries and have bought other batteries over the years from Chinese battery makers which did not last very long. In fact, Jared Land had batches of such types of batteries for the DVX 100 years back before he joined RED and I bought a number. They didn't last … typical problem unless you do some heavy lifting and get into who's battery 'slurry mix' really drives professional cameras for a good number of years. Chinese battery cells are frankly not very good … mind you that is changing but who wants to buy lemons to find a few good oranges.
I had to make a change … in my research on battery chemical 'slurry mix' you get to the heart of the matter. The chemical mixes and refinements are the key and every battery maker has their patented formula mixes, drying processes, hardening, cutting, rolling and encasing processes that give you their brand of battery. I had the manufacturer for my batteries get Samsung cells to go into the battery case because Samsung makes very good battery cells … as good as Sony!
Through the on-camera monitor the clocked time I tested on the EX3 was a stable 358 minutes and with the NanoFlash 340 minutes. The Sony FS7 clocked in at a stable 328 minutes … it draws 19 watts after all.
Well … to make a long story short I've finally received my batteries. If you need a battery that can run a camera and other devises on D-TAP or USB 2 you might want to pick up one of these BP-U65 batteries at while they last. Good for the following Sony cameras:
PXW-FS7, PMW-280, PMW-260, PMW-160, PMW-100, PMW-200 , PMW-F3, PMW-EX1, PMW-EX3,PMW-EX3R,PMW-F3K