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Contax Aria battery warning

E

equiphoto

The low battery warning on my Aria seems to randomly come on. I used the camera last night for the first time in about two weeks and when I turned it on, the low battery symbol came on and the camera was effectively dead. Turned it on and off a couple of times and it came to life, though with the low battery symbol still showing. Fired a couple of frames and turned off and on again a couple of times and the symbol disappeared.

I've seen the low battery warning come on at other times as well, though the camera has always worked normally. Usually turning off and on again will clear it.

Is this typical? Anyone else having similar problems?

Peter
 
R

rickd

Could be a combination of weak batteries and a little dirt/contamination in the contacts.

Have you tried cleaning the contacts and/or changing out the batteries?

--Rick
 
E

equiphoto

Hi Rick

The contacts look clean. I don't think the batteries are that old but I've now replaced them and, so far, the low battery warning has gone. But if it was just low batteries, I don't understand how the warning symbol can sometimes be on and sometimes off. I'm suspicious because of the note in the manual which claims "The voltage of some batteries may temporarily decrease...". I've never heard of this before with lithium batteries and it sounds more like a cover-up of some deficiency in the battery sensing circuit.

Peter
 

wilsonlaidlaw

Well-Known Member
I had a similar experience when I tried using lithium AA batteries (for taking skiing pics in low temps when Nimh batteries were useless) in the Leica Digilux 4.3 I used to have. You would get a low battery warning when you first switched on but after a while this went out. It was almost as if the batteries needed to warm up and get some current flowing before they developed full voltage. Have you tried CR2's specifically designed for photo use e.g. Kodak? I have found the Kodak ones seem to last a little longer in my G2 than the Panasonic but as they are three times the price, I don't bother. Wilson
 

afranklin

Well-Known Member
Hi Peter,

"I don't understand how the warning symbol can sometimes be on and sometimes off."

That's not that uncommon (especially with Li & NiMH batteries). The batteries can gain a little charge over time, not much, but enough to put it over the threshold of being "low". Also, keep in mind, the low battery warning isn't "exact", meaining it has a range that it operates over, and depending on temperature, how many birds on the roof etc. it may be on, it may be off, with the same battery condition. Of course, once the batteries get below a particular threshold, it'll be on constantly.

Sounds to me like you were right on the cusp, given new batteries seem to work fine.

Regards,

Austin
 
R

rickd

Exactly. Weak batteries won't give consistent output, and it's difficult to predict how any given device will respond to varying voltage and current. Even a miniscule amount of contamination on the contacts will further impede things.

Hopefully this is the only problem in this case.

On the topic of CR2s, given that so many Contax devices use them (in my case an Aria, G2, T3 and TLA 200) has anyone on list bought them in bulk? I've seen them as cheap as roughly $US 2.00 each, which is a lot better than getting hammered $8 each at the drugstore, but I've never taken the plunge. Some are recognizable brand names, and some not.

--Rick
 

wilsonlaidlaw

Well-Known Member
Rick (Rickd),
I have been using Panasonic 2CR's and 2CR5's for about three to four years with no problems. The 2CR's very cold weather performance I think, is slightly inferior to Kodak ones on high drain devices like digitals and they don't seem to last quite as long but as I always change them early, this is not a problem. The 2CR5's seem no different from the Kodak ones. In the UK/Europe these are available from
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for about 25% of normal shop price. Wilson
 
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