A layman’s guide to battery grips

    | Photography Tutorials | Tutorials | 20/07/2014 00:01am
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    What is a battery grip and how do you use it? If you’re new to photography you might understandably have a few questions about some of the equipment.

    There are a number of things you need to consider when buying a battery grip and using it for the first time.

    In our latest layman’s guide to fundamental gear we answer some of the most common questions photographers have about battery grips.

    A layman's guide to using battery grips

    What are battery grips?

    A battery grip that’s dedicated to specific camera bodies generally enables the fitment of an extra regular Li-ion camera battery, and often gives the additional option of running the camera from a number of regular AA batteries.

    What are battery grips good for?

    One of the biggest selling points of a battery grip is that the main shutter button and some other controls are duplicated. This enables much more comfortable and intuitive handling when using the camera in portrait (upright) orientation. A lock for the secondary shutter release button is often fitted, to guard against accidental firing with the palm of your hand in landscape orientation shooting.

    SEE MORE: Battery grip anatomy – what’s inside and what does it do?

    Who makes battery grips?

    Own-brand battery grips are available for most makes and models of SLR. However, they often tend to be pricey, costing up to £250 and sometimes even more than that.

    For a good-quality independent make, Hähnel is a popular option, often giving a saving of more than 50 per cent.

    However, be wary of cheap unbranded grips, which may be poorly made and unreliable in operation.

    When should I use a battery grip?

    With capacity for two camera batteries, or one battery in addition to the existing battery in the camera, a battery grip can effectively double your shooting life before you need to swap cells.

    As we’ve mentioned, they’re much more comfortable for portrait-orientation shooting, but can also make the camera bigger and more natural to handle for landscape-orientation shots.

    How do I attach a battery grip to my DSLR?

    Battery grips attach to the underside of the camera, securing via the threaded tripod socket. In some cases, a cover flap needs to be removed to enable connections. In others, a protruding upright section slots upwards into the battery chamber.

    A layman's guide to batter grips

    Two more things you should know about battery grips…

    1. Grips that enable you to still fit a battery into the camera usually only have space for one additional battery in the grip itself (see top of this page); although, they often have a tray for using AA batteries as an alternative.
    2. With some grips you can’t fit a battery into the actual camera (see above), but you can usually put two camera batteries or a number of AA batteries into the grip itself.

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    Posted on Sunday, July 20th, 2014 at 12:01 am under Photography Tutorials, Tutorials.

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