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Osmo Pocket external battery operation
271 17 4-1 17:10
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Mike Freeland
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I routinely run my Pocket for 2 hours straight, at 4K 30 - 60 (depending on my mood).  It's dicey if not impossible, recording for that long on its internal battery, so I attach a big external battery.  The problem is that the external unit is a charger, not just a battery.  This means that if I connect it to the Pocket when its battery is full, or close to it, the external unit charges it until it's topped off, then shuts off, immediately giving me about 45 minutes shooting time on just the Pocket's battery.  So as the Pocket's battery drains away, it doesn't bother to communicate with this 500 megawatt box just down there, and happily burns itself to the ground, stopping the recording before I'm ready to.  The external battery is blissfully unaware that it should start charging again.
As a result, the Pocket is the first piece of equipment I've ever taken into the field that I had to ensure that its battery was substantially drained before putting it into service. The lower the percentage power left in the Osmo, the longer it will work with the external battery.

So, is there a a "dumb" external battery that simply adds time to the Pocket's recording time without messing with the complex charge/discharge system? I can't often use AC power.  Besides, the extension cords's bigger than the Osmo and that looks stupid.

Thanks all.

4-1 17:10
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Ray-CubeAce
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Not that I'm aware of but I think DJI advise against using and charging at the same time as recording as it shortens the Pockets' charging life.
If that is true then you run the risk of gettting shorter and shorter recording times.

4-1 22:36
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Ray-CubeAce
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Double post
4-1 22:37
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DJI Mindy
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Hi Mike, as Ray-CubeAce mentioned, we not not recommend to charge the Osmo Pocket when shooting at the same time, becuase it will cause the battery heats up and shorten the battery life. We've released Osmo Pocket Charging Case which could help extend the shooting time as a portable charger, please check more details here: https://store.dji.com/product/osmo-pocket-charging-case
4-2 23:21
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Mike Freeland
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Thanks for your replies.

Well, that puts some sugar in the gas tank. I wasn't aware of that caveat.  I'm not sure I have much choice but to do what I'm doing because it's the only way I can figure out how to extend the Pocket's run time.  It would seem a simple firmware modification to allow one to have the device bypass the internal battery entirely and rely on an external  power source exclusively.  Probably it's not so simple.  I suppose I could discharge the unit to 75% rather than 30% to reduce the amount of time it's shooting and charging at the same time.

How would thee charging case extend shooting time, unless I can shoot while the pocket is in the case?  I can as easily charge it with one of my external batteries

That brings up another question: Since the Pocket's battery is not replaceable, will it work with external power even after its own battery is shot?  Can the unit be sent to DJI for battery replacement?
4-3 09:09
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Ray-CubeAce
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Mike Freeland Posted at 4-3 09:09
Thanks for your replies.

Well, that puts some sugar in the gas tank. I wasn't aware of that caveat.  I'm not sure I have much choice but to do what I'm doing because it's the only way I can figure out how to extend the Pocket's run time.  It would seem a simple firmware modification to allow one to have the device bypass the internal battery entirely and rely on an external  power source exclusively.  Probably it's not so simple.  I suppose I could discharge the unit to 75% rather than 30% to reduce the amount of time it's shooting and charging at the same time.

On part one I would say make no difference. It's the amount of times the battery is recharged, not the amount, but the longer recharge time may make things worse as the battery is heated for longer.

You can't charge and shoot in the case at the same time. Something is being lost in translation between your needs and DJI Mindy's reply.

Yes DJI can replace batteries but if you don't have a DJI center in your country then postage may be higher than you may expect to send it in. The battery replacement cost is quite reasonable, it's the postage that seems expensive.
4-3 09:23
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Mike Freeland
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Part 1: That's what I was referring to - a shorter shoot/charge time before the internal battery kicks in may mitigate the damage caused by doing it that way.  4K causes the battery to heat up notably anyway, and I have to say that while I was experimenting with the external battery and shooting times, I did NOT note heating that was much greater than the standard 4K heating.  Wasn't looking for it, but I wasn't alarmed by it either.

Part 2: I knew that, and I agree with your assertion.  The means by which you charge a battery to capacity has no bearing on shooting times.

Part 3: I'm in Colorado, and right here within 10 miles (EVERYTHING in Colorado is at least 10 miles from everything else) is a store called Multicopter Warehouse, which used to be called DJI Colorado.  I bet they can help.  I'm glad to know I don't have to throw this thing away because the battery's dead.
4-3 09:59
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Ray-CubeAce
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Mike Freeland Posted at 4-3 09:59
Part 1: That's what I was referring to - a shorter shoot/charge time before the internal battery kicks in may mitigate the damage caused by doing it that way.  4K causes the battery to heat up notably anyway, and I have to say that while I was experimenting with the external battery and shooting times, I did NOT note heating that was much greater than the standard 4K heating.  Wasn't looking for it, but I wasn't alarmed by it either.

Part 2: I knew that, and I agree with your assertion.  The means by which you charge a battery to capacity has no bearing on shooting times.

On point three.
I would phone helicopter warehouse first to make sure they can effect a replacement.
I see a lot of tear-down videos of the Osmo Pocket on the web but no-one claiming they have been able to replace a battery. I have no real idea as to why in this particular case but it could be the battery has to be set via the Pocket for the correct current flow as a battery replacement takes place. This may need additional software applied to the Pocket while a battery is fitted, I don't know for sure but the lack of successful battery replacement at home claims on the internet would suggest it's not straightforward.
4-3 10:37
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Mike Freeland
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And I've never seen a source from which to buy the battery either.  A combination of that and your point makes it less than a desirable endeavor.  I've replaced a number of smartphone batteries, but I don't think I'd want to tackle the Pocket.  I still want a remote on/off capability.  That's more important than a zoom.  Woops.  Off topic.
4-3 12:29
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MKosmo
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Although a slightly wasteful solution, I assume your power bank has multiple outputs ?

So will also depend on the power bank itself, but you may find using a dummy load on another port may keep the power on.

If you could make it, a resistor on a usb A plug - or here is a ready made item,

https://www.sotabeams.co.uk/usb-battery-pack-keep-alive-load/

Or even something like a usb led light may do the trick too.

4-3 13:24
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Mike Freeland
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It does indeed have two outputs.  That's definitely worth a try, and your suggestion is way out of my expertise, so I'm willing to try it. Any idea what value the resister needs to be?  Is it related to what the mAh rating of the power bank?  Sounds like the load doesn't have to be much if an LED is potentially a solution.

Thanks for the tip.  You've been very helpful, and didn't even try to sell me something !

If I get a chance to try this out, I'll post here.  My business is pretty well shut down because of the pandemic so I don't have much motivation until my next gig looms.  I DO have time to catch up on post though.  The only silver lining to this mess for me.
4-3 14:16
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MKosmo
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Mike Freeland Posted at 4-3 14:16
It does indeed have two outputs.  That's definitely worth a try, and your suggestion is way out of my expertise, so I'm willing to try it. Any idea what value the resister needs to be?  Is it related to what the mAh rating of the power bank?  Sounds like the load doesn't have to be much if an LED is potentially a solution.

Thanks for the tip.  You've been very helpful, and didn't even try to sell me something !

Hi, do you have your power bank model number ? There might be something in the spec that tells you the minimum current required.

As a rough gestimate, I would start with a 10mA load, which is a 470ohm 1/4w, or 1/2w resistor will be fine.  This would be wired across usb 5v down to ground.  

IF your power bank switches it’s outputs off independently, you could purchase one of those USB Y splitter cables, so in effect your osmo pocket connection will be in parallel with your dummy load.

( in fact if you used a Y splitter cable, you could chop off the end of one of the leads, strip back the wires as a connection point for your resistor )

4-4 13:13
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MKosmo
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Example Y splitter :

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Splitte ... nsion/dp/B06WD2K2Y8
4-4 13:14
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Mike Freeland
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Yeah, this is in Insignia  ns-mb12002, output 5v 2.1A (total) 12000mAh

Here's another item on the spec labvel I have no clue about.  Maybe it means something to you: CAN-ICES-3(B)/NMB-3(B)

with 2 USB-A outputs.

This is great info - looking forward to trying it.  I appreciate your time.  I'll definitely report back.  I have a boatload of resistors of all denominations so I bet I can find one that'll fir the bill.  I've completely forgotten everything I knew (which wasn't much to begin with) so I'm grateful to have someone out there with a guiding flashlight.
4-4 13:25
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MKosmo
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For curiosity, I just tried this

https://www.ikea.com/gb/en/p/jansjoe-led-usb-lamp-black-70291232/

On a couple of power banks I have.   This 50mA led load woke both of them up.  

When I get chance I’ll try a 10mA resistive load to see if that works too.
4-4 13:25
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Mike Freeland
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For a while there I was missing something, but now that I see what you're talking about in real images, it suddenly comes clear what's going on.  This is the application I'm using it for.  It's an elegant way to film the conductor and is virtually invisible to the audience.  And the lens isn't like a Go-Pro fisheye so there's no distortion.  But you can also see that it's inaccessible after the performance begins, especially if there's no intermission.

so you can see that a light wouldn't do.  The audience wouldn't look at anything else!  Now the question would be, if the power bank is powering the Oamo at a lower level, and it doesn't turn off when the battery reaches capacity, is it likely to overcharge the Osmo (and blow up, augmenting the performance)?
4-4 13:51
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MKosmo
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Yes a light would a touch distracting in that scene !

However you could always put some black duck tape over a light.

I’m sure most people leave their devices charging over night which would a similar scenario with the pocket connected to a charger for many hours.

Just because there is voltage present doesn’t mean it will be drawing current.  The charge circuit will manage the charge current and there is always the battery protection circuitry in addition.

Earlier in the thread it was mentioned the possibility of overheating because of filming at 4K for long periods of time. This is more of. a concern,because I guess dji are not expecting the pocket to be recording for longer periods than the battery can supply. However if you have not observed a particular heat issue or any overheat warning message in your environment , this may be the key - since worst case will be filiming in a hot ambient.   
4-4 14:29
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Mike Freeland
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Ah, so the reason the charging stops is that the power bank shuts off - the Osmo doesn't tell it to?  That's the opposite of what I always thought.  I also assumed that AC chargers did just what the external batteries did.  As I may have mentioned, I could run AC to it, but I don't want to if I don't have to - miles of gaffing tape and trip hazards and all that.

I did mention heating in 4K shooting, but in fact, I probably should have said "warm" instead. The upper end of warm, but still not HOT. The unit does heat up, but I've never been alarmed by it or seen any evidence of battery bloat or anything.  I wouldn't consider it dangerous.  You'r right, my application is very unusual.  I use camcorders for the unmanned positions because they don't shut down after 20 minutes like DSLRs do.  So far the Osmo has held up fantastically in this environment, and I've shot 6 or 7 concerts this way so far, all around 2 hours from start to finish.  

Good point about filming longer than the battery can supply.
4-4 14:57
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