Today we’re providing a list of some of the more common disposable batteries used in photographic equipment. Many of the older cameras took batteries that were made with mercury and have since been discontinued. There are however, modern replacements for most of these batteries.
The most common types of equipment that take batteries are cameras, flash units, power drives, winders, data backs, light meters, metered prisms, and wireless flash trigger systems. Other larger and more modern pieces of equipment typically take rechargeable batteries (not listed) such as digital SLR’s and studio lighting gear.
There are tons of different batteries available, and it can be overwhelming to find what you need if you’re not sure what you’re looking for. Many battery types or sizes also have numerous names depending on what brands are making them, and the time period that they were made. Understanding the most common ones is a great place to start, and keep in mind that if you are in need of a battery that has been discontinued, there is most likely a modern replacement that will work, and if not, there are usually adapters made that take modern batteries and make them work in the older equipment.
Below, we use the words “common” and “rare” to represent how easily accessible and/or how common the different batteries are in your typical local store that carries batteries. Of course, most of the “rare” batteries are much more accessible online.
|Left: 9V (PP3), Right: CR-V3|
|L: 2CR5, R: CR-P2|
|L: 5/V500RH, R: 28L|
|L: AA, AAA, R: CR2, CR123A|
|L: CR-1/3N, 357, R: 625, CR2025|
|L: LR50, Center: V27PX, R: V400PX|
* 9v: 9 volt alkaline. Also sometimes referred to as a PP3. Used primarily in light and color meters, and in adapters for Hasselblad 500 EL models. Common.
* CR-V3: 3 volt lithium. The size of 2 AA batteries. Used primarily in digital Olympus and Kodak cameras. Rare.
* 2CR5: 6 volt lithium. Use primarily in Canon EOS film cameras. Common.
* CR-P2: 6v lithium. Also referred to as a 223. Used in a variety of film and digital cameras. Common.
* 5/V500RH: 6v Ni/Cd rechargeable. No longer made. Replacement battery is a 600 or 750 mAh NIMH. Used in Hasselblad 500 EL, ELM, ELX models. Rare.
* 28L: 6v lithium. Most commonly used in Canon AE-1’s. Also used in select models of Bronica, Hasselblad metered prisms, Pentax 6×7, and Minox. Common.
* AA: 1.5v alkaline. Used in many photographic items including flash units, 35mm and medium format film cameras, digital cameras, wireless flash triggers, power winders, motor drives, and battery packs. Very common.
* AAA: 1.5v alkaline. Primarily used in select Minolta 35mm film cameras. Common.
* CR2: 3v lithium. Used in some digital point-and-shoot cameras, Konica Hexar RF, and Hasselblad XPan. Common.
* CR123A: 3v lithium. Used in many point-and-shoot cameras, Leica SF-20 flash, Yashica T4. Common.
* CR-1/3N: 3v lithium “button” cell. The same as using 2 357/SR44 batteries. Used in select Leica M cameras, Nikon film cameras and prisms, and many other film SLR’s. Rare.
* 357 or SR44: 1.5v silver oxide “button” cell. Used in many 35mm and medium format cameras, metered prisms, and light meters. Common.
* PX-625: 1.5v alkaline cell. Used in select Yashica models and Canonet’s. Rare.
* CR2025: 3v lithium “coin” battery. Very similar to the CR2032. Both are used in many data backs, and some light meters. Common.
* LR50: 1.5v alkaline. Replaces the 1.35v MR50 or PX1 mercury batteries. Used in the Canon Flash Coupler L. Rare.
* V27PX: 6v silver oxide. Replaces the older 5.6v mercury version. Used in some Minox and Rollei cameras. Rare.
* 400PX: 1.55v silver oxide. Replaces the older 1.35v mercury version. Is recognizable due to the plastic collar around the battery. Used in Pentax Spotmatic models. Rare.
* C and D batteries (not pictured): C (or LR14) and D (or LR20) batteries are both 1.5v alkaline. Used in some handle-mount flash units. Common.
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