top of page

Pod Modified BMPCC 4K (Prototype) with Smallrig VB50

V-Mount batteries have become the industry standard, first developed in 2000 by Sony. Since then, a multitude of companies have developed a broad range of battery options, varying wildly in features, quality and price. The cheapest V-Mount batteries start as low as $200 NZD, while versions with high-watt outputs, required to power studio lighting equipment, can cost more than $2000 NZD. While the quality and feature set tends to line up with these price brackets, there are exceptions- and it can be easy to end up with a poor quality battery that puts your camera at risk.

Some battery brands, previously known for offering higher-quality technology, are now offering more compact and lower-price V-Mount batteries. These new, compact batteries come under the ‘mini V-mount’ battery category, which are most often used with smaller rigs and cameras from the likes of Z-cam, Panasonic and Red. These mini V-mount batteries make an excellent fit on the Pod Modded Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Cameras. Brands will normally label or market these smaller batteries as ‘mini V-mounts’ but if they don’t, you can check by looking at the mount side of the battery. At the bottom you should fine a row of 5 (or more) female pin sockets, and above that, the V-shaped locking mount. If this V-mount is located within 20mm of the top of the battery, you’ve got a mini battery. Typical, larger V-mount batteries will be taller, leaving the V-lock closer to the center of the battery’s back. This means that when used on a Pod Modified Pocket Cinema Camera, full-size V-mount batteries may block the camera’s 6 buttons located to the right of the V-mount plate. The menu is still accessible by tapping the hamburger icon at the top right of the display, but there’s no way of playing back recorded media without pressing the ‘play’ button here. One workaround is to remove the V-mount battery and preview recorded media while powering the camera from the internal LP-E6 battery, but we’re recommending that you choose mini V-Mount batteries for your Pod Modified camera.

Rendered Pod Modified Pocket Cinema Camera

For reference, the V-Mount plate included with the Pod Mod Kit measures 75mm by 128mm. Mini V-Mount batteries can exceed this measurment slightly without blocking the camera’s buttons. The thickness of the battery doesn’t make any impact to button access, and the V-Mount plate can support any available size and weight of V-Mount batteries on the market, but it’s good to keep in mind the size of your lens before choosing a battery.

Smaller, lighter lenses like pancake lenses or many MFT mount lenses available for the BMPCC4K will better suit a slimmer battery. Smallrig’s VB50 and the Swit PB-M45S weighs less than 500 grams while offering hours of battery life. However, if you’re using a larger, heavier lens or adapting DSLR or Cinema lenses to your Pocket camera, a higher-capacity V-Mount battery can act as a counterweight, keeping your camera’s balance point nearer the grip, while adding even more run time.

Swit’s ‘Mino’ battery lineup offers several capacity options in varying widths, and they add a USB-C port for fast charging itself as well as your other accessories. They feature a 4-LED indicator and button for capacity, which may not give the best accuracy, but is a handy indicator of battery level. Smallrig’s VB-battery lineup has similar features and quality, but adds a more extensive OLED display to the battery’s face, which displays the exact percentage after clicking the power button, and when using its built-in USB-C or USB-A port, this screen displays the voltage being output by each port. Other brands offering quality mini V-Mount batteries are Core, with their ‘SWX Nano Micro’ series, and FXLion with their ‘Nano’ batteries, although these have a slightly lower quality plastic finish.

At the end of the day, your V-Mount battery choice comes down to your specific use case, wether you’d like a battery that also acts as a counterweight for your lens to improve the comfort of your camera, and wether you’d like a singe V-Mount battery to power your camera all day over 2-3 to battery swaps over a shoot. Keep in mind, the LP-E6 battery inside the Pocket Cinema Cameras acts as a backup power supply, so you can hot-swap V-Mount batteries without having to power your camera down.

15 NOVEMBER 2023

V-Mount Batteries

Which V-Mount batteries are best going into 2024?

Pod Tech

New Zealand

© Copyright Pod Tech 2023. All rights reserved.

bottom of page