Cellular Trail Cam and Battery Life

Discussion in 'Trail Cameras' started by Marauder, Apr 13, 2018.

  1. Marauder

    Marauder Die Hard Bowhunter

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    I am hoping to add a cell cam to my collection of trail cams this upcoming season. Now for those of you that already have cell cams, do the batteries not last as long in cell cams? Is it something to be expected? I'm sure it depends on the camera. But I never really thought about it until I've read a few reviews. Also would it be wise to consider an external battery pack with a cell cam versus lithium batteries?
     
  2. copperhead

    copperhead Grizzled Veteran

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    Ok I have two. An older Covert and a older StealthCam. The covert eats batteries in a matter of two weeks maybe 3 if you use lithium. My solution there was to put rechargeable batteries in the camera, then connect it to a 12v external battery with a solar panel. It will run for months like that.

    The StealthCam will run for like 3 months on a set of lithiums. Have not tried to connect it to an external source to see how long it lasts.

    In the case of the Covert thats the only way it will work. In its defense though the signal where it isolated is horrible and even eats a cell phone battery as a result.
     
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  3. bowhtr1

    bowhtr1 Weekend Warrior

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    I use external batteries in all of mine. It cost under 50 bucks to make the external using a pelican waterproof case. It will last about a month on regular alkaline batteries and maybe 2 months with lithium batteries. The battery pack using rechargeable batteries from Ebay last over three months. If you add a solar cell that could be indefinite. I have a 6 volt and 12 volt spare that I swap mine out with when it gets low. You will need a cable, pelican 1120 case and whatever size battery needed for the cam you have. The batteries that fit the 1120 case is 12volt 8ah/20hr and 6volt 12ah/20hr. Do yourself a favor and build a external. It pays for itself in four months.

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  4. bowhtr1

    bowhtr1 Weekend Warrior

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    I have Spartans now i but did the same when I owned Coverts.

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  5. copperhead

    copperhead Grizzled Veteran

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    Got a link on how you made the external battery box?
     
  6. bowhtr1

    bowhtr1 Weekend Warrior

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    Just bought what was needed above. Drilled small as possible hole to thread wire through and gorilla glued the hole after. I used some of the foam from the case to keep the battery from moving around. The hole was drilled in the bottom on one end. It's very simple. You will also need the little connectors to connect the battery to the cables. I think its the red connectors that fit. I got the cables from various places. Some cams come with it. All cell cams should come with it but dont.

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  7. pastorjim08

    pastorjim08 Grizzled Veteran

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    I have a Stealth Cam GXW and it goes through a set of lithiums in about 2.5 months, depending on the amount of pics taken. I have recently bought an external battery with a solar panel, so I'm anxious to see what that does. I also have a Spypoint Link S. It has a built in solar panel that charges an internal battery. It has been in the field sending pics since the first week of November and the battery meter is still reading full. The Spypoint is pricey though at nearly $500.00. For the money, I think an external battery with a solar panel is the way to go.

    Blessings..........Pastorjim
     
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  8. Marauder

    Marauder Die Hard Bowhunter

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  9. pastorjim08

    pastorjim08 Grizzled Veteran

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    I do now. The first one I got had some issues but I bought it from trailcampro.com so they took care of me. Dealing with Spypoint was another issue though. They are a nightmare to get a hold of. Once I did they fixed my issues. But this second camera has been nothing but great!

    Blessings.........Pastorjim

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  10. dbl lung

    dbl lung Weekend Warrior

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    I use 15 Moultrie 40i cameras with the modem and external batteries. One charge = one season in the Wisconsin Fall, Winter and early Spring. They work incredibly well but the cost can be a turn off. You have to have the account with Moultrie and the amount you pay is based on how many pictures you will receive.
     
  11. Justin

    Justin Administrator

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    I'm running an external battery w/solar panel on my Stealth Cam GXW and so far so good. I'm a couple months in with zero issues and the battery still shows full after transmitting hundreds, maybe thousands, of images.

    This the battery I'm running - https://www.sportsmansguide.com/pro...MI5JbN_8SK2wIVxksNCh3F0w0oEAQYAiABEgIA7PD_BwE

    For those looking for an external battery just make sure you check with the camera MFG to see if it requires a 6V or 12V system. I know a few people who have fried 6V cameras by plugging 12V batteries into them. Spartan cams are 6V and Stealth Cams are 12v. Not sure about other brands.
     
  12. pastorjim08

    pastorjim08 Grizzled Veteran

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    I'm glad you responded to this message. I have a question. Will it matter if you're running lithium batteries while you have the external battery hooked to it? I know from building homebrew cameras if you mix lithium and alkaline it will burn up the camera.

    Blessings..........Pastorjim

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  13. Justin

    Justin Administrator

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    I've never had that issue and I actually have Lithiums in my GXW right now from last year + external battery. I believe once you hook up the external it overrides whatever is installed into the camera directly. At last that's always been my understanding.
     
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  14. pastorjim08

    pastorjim08 Grizzled Veteran

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    One other question. Are you pointing the solar panel in any particular direction?

    Blessings.......... Pastorjim

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  15. wl704

    wl704 Grizzled Veteran

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    Recommendations are generally South facing and I think the angle ROT is 90 minus your latitude (e.g I'm at 35° latitude, so angle would be 55°). The thinking is maximum exposure over the day.

    Ymmv
     
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  16. DVO

    DVO Weekend Warrior

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    I have 2 Spartan cell cams that I love. If you have decent service they are even better. Take great pictures and have a ton of features. Reasonable monthly cost. I use external 6v batteries that I swap out. Way cheaper than lithium's and I get way more pictures per charge.


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  17. Skywalker

    Skywalker Grizzled Veteran

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    I have two Snyper Generals. I ran just the 12 Lithium batteries in mine last year and they lasted just fine. An external battery and or a solar charger would be a good option for those cameras that you just don't want to have to go check more than once in a season.
     
  18. Christine

    Christine Grizzled Veteran

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    I have a Snyper Commander that will take around 3100 pictures on 8 lithium batteries.



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