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VIrb 360 time lapse battery life in photo vs. video mode

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  • VIrb 360 time lapse battery life in photo vs. video mode

    I'm awaiting delivery of my Virb 360 to start testing it out, but initial feedback I have gotten from others is not to expect more than 2 hours for time lapse in photo or video mode at any setting. I have to hope, if Garmin has not done so already, that they will provide better battery management in photo mode through firmware update.

    For example I understand that Garmin has a good standby mode to allow voice commands. Does anyone know how long battery lasts in that standby mode? Oddly would I get better time lapse battery life if I duck taped a tape recorder next to it to say "OK Garmin Take photo" every 60 seconds. Garmin should be able to meet a similar performance for photo time lapse without jumping through the hoops.

    I can of course use AC or external battery through USB to extend battery life, but that isn't as clean. I also have small solar panel I can try with it.

  • #2
    I have an ultra 30, your only realistic option is externally powered.


    • #3
      Thanks @uberdue76, I'll play around with what I can do with the external power built into camera vs. buying dedicated powered mount. I think I can provide power through USB or charging, but not both at the same time.

      So If I'm using Solar panel, which I want to do when camping, I can either charger in day and use away from panel, or do long time lapse with panel. If I start with battery full I think it will draw from that if it isn't getting enough from the usb, vs. having camera power off from lack of power.

      Also I just got camera yesterday and did about 1/5 hour hike. I had it own the entire time, but only recoding for 15-20 minutes in about 10 clips. This killed the battery, so my work around of having tape recorder won't help I had hoped since I left it on, it might have one like hiking trail that could be shared for a series of clips, but they each have their own disjointed pice of the trail. This isn't un-expected, but it would be cool feature to have map generating when camera is on but not recording.


      • #4
        I'm already noticing how long it takes to charge vs. dis-charge. I can't see if the dual battery charger is fast charger or similar speed to in camera charging. If it is faster that could make it worth the money and extra space to carry around when traveling.


        • #5
          davidboulder has the 360 got an Extended Photo Timelapse mode like the Ultra? This feature allows the Ultra to record at intervals from 1min or longer and the start time can be set along with the recording duration. In between recording it returns to sleep mode - i've found the battery consumption minimal.

          The 3 issues that i wish Garmin would address are:
          • 1min minimum interval is too slow for sunrise/sunsets etc [i appreciate that sleep mode needs time to function but the programmable feature could be added to the Video timelapse mode]
          • there isn't an option to cover multiple days [i.e. 1..3..10 days etc] for long term time lapses like seasons
          • Extended mode needs a Night mode for record star trails etc

          If the above were sorted for the Ultra it'd be a much more powerful piece of kit and presumably the 360 too?

          BTW i ended up buying a second w/proof case for the Ultra and cutting a hole in it for the usb cable so i still had some protection for the camera. It makes a big differencefor timelapses just using a freebie 2A battery bank but not experimented with video much yet.


          • #6
            Sam_North, That's great! you beat me to it, I just stumbled across this, didn't see it in documentation. I did 2 1/2 hours with photo every 5 minutes, and battery was still mostly full 80%+. For reference I tried to embed some screenshots below. I had turned off wifi, gps, even the camera light to try and maximum. I do see hours for interval capped at 999 minutes (short of 1440 for day, but you could do 2 per day). While duration is also capped at 999 minutes there is a duration model field that can be set to "Continuous vs. Custom" and it I assume will just keep going.

            As far as night sun/set night time( which I plan to try, does it not go to max 30min exposure time?) For photos for now I have capped to ISO 100 for since I know camera will be still, but I could change that.


            • #7
              As far as night sun/set night time( which I plan to try, does it not go to max 30min exposure time?)
              I can only adjust ISO and basic under/over exposure for Extended mode.

              I hope there's some evolution in the options from a photography point of view - the hardware/software seems to be there they just need a few tweaks


              • #8
                Sam_North, if your multi-day time lapse is going to have external power, and you can keep WIFI on the, then the API gives you a lot of freedom. Was really easy to send command and get information back via command line and wifi, see link below.

                I'm new to using the API, currently just going over this 2015 documentation of "Camera Network Services API"


                • #9
                  Interesting, thanks for the info - i'll take a look