What's a good replacement or spare battery strategy for the Canon 70D battery?
You're probably wondering if you should you go with another original Canon battery or save money with an alternative?
Early on in my Canon-camera-equipment buying days I stayed loyal with an OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) attitude. OK, I know what you’re thinking.
After all, doesn't it make sense for you to buy ALL of your camera accessories from the same company? Well, actually no. At least not all of the time.
You definitely need to have a fully charged backup battery with you, but should you buy your spare for your 70D only if it's made by Canon? Here's what I found out in my experiences with Canon batteries.
I've had a lot of experience using Canon LP-E6 batteries and replacements for several years. I'm now down to 2 Wasabi batteries and an STK battery I don't use Canon made batteries for my 70D or 5D Mark III anymore. All 3 of the current batteries I use have more capacity (2600 mAh, milliamp hours) than the original Canon LP-E6 (1800 mAh).
For a deeper understanding of batteries for Canon digital cameras, you might find my recently updated FAQ article on batteries valuable to read: Canon Battery Questions and Answers.
Before reading this you may have been leaning toward one side of this issue. With respect to spare 70D batteries, it is hard to argue in favor of the Canon batteries as the best choice. Canon loyalists will argue with me on this one, but it really is hard to justify. You can get 5 replacement batteries for the price of a Canon.
Yes, you read that right. You can buy 5 alternatives for the price of a genuine Canon 70D battery.
The official Canon battery for the EOS 70D is the Canon LP-E6. For me, it's convenient because the LP-E6 battery format is compatible with both my 70D and my 5D Mark III. The LP-E6 battery is compatible with many of the Canon DSRs, the same as the slightly modified, newer LP-E6N.
This photo on the left is of a Wasabi Replacement Battery for the Canon 70D. It costs a fraction of the Canon-made one. Currently the Wasabi line and the Photiv line of replacements get consistently good reviews on Amazon.
Amazon is a great source for reading a good cross section of consumer reviews on any product. I've use the CanonGeek's 4-5 rating formula to compare these two batteries. I usually get a rating between 85 and 90 percent on both of these power sources.
Over the last ten years I have used both Canon and non-Canon made and I have never noticed a consistent difference. I had one of the official Canon 70D batteries that had a short life and I also had a non-Canon that under performed, but only in terms of how long they've lasted.
I only took 2 batteries for my Canon 70D with me on a recent trip to Ireland and neither one of them gave me any problems. Which photo do you like better?
I do give them all a good work-out with using and re-charging them due to the nature of my photography. I've never missed a shot due to a discharged battery because I always have several, fully-charged spares when I go out on a photo shoot.
The LP-E6 have special memory chips that communicate remaining power levels in 1% increments and are displayed within the menu system of the Canon 70D.
The top LCD panel has a 4 segment battery capacity bar indicator.
If you include the "empty" and the "full" levels, that's 6 levels of remaining battery capacity. This is very useful to easily watch during a long photo shoot to help plan your battery replacement strategy on the fly.
The LP-E6 batteries charge in the LC-E6 battery charger. I have not heard of anyone having issues with mixing a Canon battery with a non-Canon charger or vice versa. It's such a tiny possibility of an issue when you mix battery and charger combinations that I'd say you should dismiss it from your thoughts right away.
The LC-E6 battery charger uses a 4-level battery charge indicator system. When you place your battery in the charger the LED light shows the charge as follows:
That's 30% more than the original BP-511A which I've been using in my Canon 5D for over 6 years.
In addition to fitting the 70D, these batteries work in the Canon 5D Mark II, Canon 5D Mark III and Canon 7D. They are charged by the LC-E6 universal voltage charger. You can power your EOS 70D with the optional AC Adapter Kit ACK-E6 discussed below.
The souped up way to power the 70D is with the Canon BG-E14 Battery Grip which takes two Lp-E6s or 6 AA batteries.
Another way to power the Canon EOS 70D is the ACK-E6 power adapter. When you are shooting a big job inside and you want to save battery power you can use one of these power adapters.
I've personally never been in a situation where I have needed that much power. With a spare battery or the use of the BG-E14 battery grip, you can shoot a ton of photos without being tethered by a wire to an AC power outlet.
Whatever EOS 70d replacement battery strategy you use, remember the Canon Geek mantra: Shoot more photos. Watch less TV.
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ACK-E6 AC Power Adapter
Alternative to using a battery is the power adapter. It plugs right into your power outlet
A replacement battery pouch that holds and protects 2 LP-E6 batteries or their equivalents for Your Canon DSLR.