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Archos Camera Battery Addon

Discussion in 'Bikes and Buying Advice - What Bike?' started by Iceniner, 24 Apr 2008.

  1. Iceniner

    Iceniner New Member

    Im currently running an Archos 405 with helmet camera. Here is my little hack to help increase the battery life for people who want to go on longer riders whilst recording.

    The Kit List:
    (i brought this all from my local maplin) £3.62 total cost (minus batteries!)

    4AA battery box long (65p)
    Power tip (type H) (99p)
    PP3 clip (49p)
    DC output lead (£1.49)

    Soldering iron + solder
    old inner tube + super glue.

    [PICTURE ONE]

    Method:
    First clip the pp3 clip to the top of the battery pack, and clip the wires of both the pp3 clip and the dc output lead. Plug in the power tip too so that it has the postive sign next to where it says "tip" on the dc output lead.

    Solder the wires together, typically the black with white lead is positive to the red lead and black to black. This should work but do check that the polarity is correct before solding it all together. I used electrical insulating tape as the heat shrink tubing i had wasnt quite big enough, but this would probably look a bit neater.

    I used a section of an old inner tube to make a housing for the batteries to make it a bit more protectedfrom the elements (although it all sits zipped in my pocket).

    [PICTURE 2 & 3]

    Result:
    A small 4xAA battery charger for the archos unit that recharges the battery whilst recording. Although at the moment im not sure how long it charges for or how long it extends the battery life of the unit. Ill post this at a later date ;).

    Just a note on the batteries; ive used rechargable NiH ones that are rated at 1.2V. As these are used in serial the total volts are 4.8V (the charging plug of the archos unit is rated at a 5V output) Im not sure if using standard non recharagable batteries (1.5v each) would be too much voltage (6V total) ???
     
  2. magnatom

    magnatom Guest

    Iceniner,

    Thats a brilliant hack! Good thinking! Excuse my ignorance, but what happens as the batteries discharge and the voltage drops, does it just switch to its internal battery?

    My commutes are fairly short so the battery life isn't to big a deal for me, but I know that it could be an issue for others.

    Good stuff!:biggrin:
     
  3. Iceniner

    Iceniner New Member

    Well ive done some tests, the internal battery of my archos roughly fully charged lasted around 1h 45m.

    I hooked up my 2300mah batteries (fully charged) using my little battery back. These charged the unit approximately 1 hour before going flat. I think that if you left them in too long and the voltage dropped too low then you might actually decharge the internal battery *eek!*

    But after charging the unit of the battery pack for 1 hour as mentioned (i dont think the pack was quite fully drained but the batteries seemed to be pretty lowish), it then proceeded to record for another 30 minutes.

    So it looks like you just have to remember not to leave the batteries connected all the time otherwise you'll eventually end up draining the internal battery :-( Other than that it looks good, two packs and you get an extra hour of filming or so.

    Im quite tempted to build another pack to save messing around changing batteries plus they are very cheap to make.
     
  4. BentMikey

    BentMikey Rider of Seolferwulf

    Location:
    South London
    Interesting project! MCD mentioned that you could probably use a std USB charger on the Archos, that would have been my route if I'd bought an Archos.

    a) I shouldn't be spending any money in the first place, since Mrs Mikey is preggers
    :sad: I really want that VIO POV1 camera setup instead, it looks like it's nearly perfect!
     
  5. magnatom

    magnatom Guest

    Hey, congrats on your good ladies pregnancy! :sad: When is she due? Is this your first?

    Sorry for the OT!
     
  6. BentMikey

    BentMikey Rider of Seolferwulf

    Location:
    South London
    miniMikey no.2 mate, thanks! Due in September.
     
  7. magnatom

    magnatom Guest

    Good luck with that! 2 keep you busy! :sad:
     
  8. Iceniner

    Iceniner New Member

    Congratulation Mikey! You'll be well on your way to having a good youth tandem team in a few years time :-D

    I had thought about making it USB based, but my electronics knowledge isnt very good so this was easier. Also you couldnt charge it via usb when you have the weird grey travel adapter bit in at the bottom of which the camera plugs in.

    I do love my archos system the quality is brilliant even better than on the youtube videos i looked at before hand. I am now battling to get the battery to last longer than 2 hours!
     
  9. magnatom

    magnatom Guest

    Iceniner,

    I've just come across this http://www.newmp3technology.com/aabox-04.htm

    It would seem that you weren't first, but you are certainly the cheapest!

    Glad you like the camera, yes the battery life isn't the best, but for me that isn't really a problem.