Olympus om-1n battery compensation

Discussion in '35mm Cameras and Accessories' started by elmartinj, Dec 26, 2018.

  1. elmartinj

    elmartinj Member
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    So I've been shooting for a few months with an om-1n. I normally use sunny 16 and am usually accurate. I don't know whether the camera's meter works but if it did and considering I don't care as much to go through the hassle of buying and adaptor for an LR-44 or trying to get the real batteries, could I just pop an LR-44 and compensate with the ISO dial? If so, how should I compensate? Thanks!
     
  2. MattKing

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    You can't use a single amount of compensation, because the LR-44 changes voltage over time, and the meter circuit in the OM-1 is non-linear if you use a voltage source that supplies the nominal 1.5 volts that the LR-44 starts out with.
    Some have success using a hearing aid (zinc air) 675 battery and a rubber O-ring to deal with the size difference. I have had good results using that battery and the passive metal adapter that Jon Goodman sells.
    The hearing aid batteries don't last for a long time, but they are widely available and cheap.
     
  3. benjiboy

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    why not use a 625 Zinc Air battery, and you don't need a rubber ring.?.
     
  4. MattKing

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    Because compared to the 675 zinc air batteries, they are equally short lived, and quite expensive.
    Amazon.ca 625 Zinc Air battery - $21.26 CDN for one: https://www.amazon.ca/Exell-Battery-MRB625-1-35-Volt-White/dp/B00HWFCAYK
    Amazon.ca 675 Zinc Air battery - $13.59 CDN for 16 "Kodak branded": https://www.amazon.ca/Kodak-Hearing...61630&sr=1-9&keywords=675+hearing+aid+battery
    In the past, I've found the 675 size batteries at a much lower price at Costco. I haven't shopped for a while, because I still have several from my last purchase.
     
  5. wiltw

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    The OM-1n needs the constant voltage of 1.35v mercuric oxide cell, and one cannot dial in a simple 'compensation' in the form of higher/lower ISO value than the film rating. That is caused by the fact that the amount of error in the reading depends upon the LEVEL OF LIGHT BEING METERED!...I did a test many years ago with a mercuric oxide battery vs. 1.5v cell, and discovered that the error in low light was different than the error in bright light.
     
  6. MultiFormat Shooter

    MultiFormat Shooter Member
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    I'd use Wein cells, as they have a flat discharge curve, and aren't too expensive.
     
  7. MattKing

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    Wein cells are the zinc air (hearing aid) batteries in a housing sized appropriately.
     
  8. Chan Tran

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    I would just use the 625 alkaline battery and see how it behaves.
     
  9. wiltw

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    As I said in post 5, " the amount of error in the reading depends upon the LEVEL OF LIGHT BEING METERED!"
     
  10. Chan Tran

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    Yes that is why I want to see how it behaves. I found that on my Minolta SRT101 and with a precise 1.35V power supply it also has an amount of error depending on the light level being measured. That's why I decided to use it without the meter.
    I built an adapter so that I can power it with an external regulated and precise power supply.
     
  11. btaylor

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    It’s not complicated. The Wein cells are about $5 each they last quite awhile if you cover the air hole when not in use. An MR-9 adapter for a silver cell to drop it to 1.35v is $25 to 37. Or have the camera modified when you get a CLA.
     
  12. MattKing

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  13. I have about a dozen different cameras that used to take the old mercury batteries and because of this, I use the 675 hearing aid batteries. I buy mine at Costco. You can buy a card of 48 675s for less than $10US there. I just trim off a section of the card with scissors that will hold several batteries and drop it into my camera bag so I'll always have fresh batteries on hand. What I like about the 675s is they almost exactly emulate the very flat discharge profile of the old mercury batteries. And they're so cheap that, if I haven't used the camera in a while, I'll just replace the battery(s) with fresh -- one less thing to worry about.

    +1 regarding Jon Goodman's adapters.
     
  14. BMbikerider

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    Whatever the problem there are a number of ways to get aroud it, but why were the mercuric oxide cells discontinued anyway? The story punted around in UK was somethong to do with the disposal of the battery and the contamination it would cause if they continued to be used and disposed of in a careless way.

    Can I suggest that is a load of old rubbish! All the fluorecent tubes that are used in the world all have a certain percentage of the content of the tube linings derived from Mercury so what happens to them when they expire. Usually they get thrown into a bin to be recycled (at least in UK). They are gradually being phased out but on the grounds that LED is more efficient, not safer!

    Why can't 1.35v mercury batteries returned for use. The quantity of mercury which would cause problem is almost certainly at the bottom of the pile when you think of the damage that all other types of contamination is proven to cause. Smoking, vehicle exhaust fumes, CO2 discharge, plastic irresponsibly discarded, I could go on, the list could be almost endless.

    Now, many years after the dicontinuation of the sale of mercury batteries and the total absence of new cameras that use a mercury cell surely there is a good reason to offer a limited production just to keep these photographic gems working properly. After all, mercury cells last a lot longer than a Wein cell, they were cheaper, and they were 100% reliable. You could be using a camera with a Wein cell one day and the very next after only a few months it is dead! Mercury ones lasted many years if only used to power the meter.

    As we should all now know of the possible dangers, we as photographers who value our equipment should be trusted to act responsibly. How about, a system where if you had one already, you could not get another unless you returned the discharged one. Yes, OK, I'm tilting at windmills, but a blanket ban, is it really necessary - is it? I would suggest NO!
     
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2018
  15. Theo Sulphate

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    That makes sense to me. Also with car batteries, people usually return the old battery as a means of getting a substantial discount on the new one; I think that approach has worked well.
     
  16. Chan Tran

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    I thought I had a link somewhere that you can order the real mercury oxide batteries from Russia.
     
  17. BMbikerider

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    I don't know about America but there are sactions in force in UK and also the EU preventing the import of goods other commercial deals with Russia so batteries I think will be at the bottom of the list.

    Hmmm! They still import vast amounts of gas from Russia via Poland and Germany to other parts of Europe. How can they do that? Can cameras using mercury batteries be converted to run on gas I wonder? :D
     
  18. CMoore

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  19. Arvee

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    And, don't know if y'all noticed but you can purchase the expensive zinc air batteries one time, use them up and then remove the simple washer/spacer from the battery. This washer will press on nicely on the Costco hearing aid batteries making an exact replica of the zinc air 625. I've been using the same washers over and over on the Costco batteries since I bought the zinc air 625 in 2001.
     
  20. Dan Fromm

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  21. John Koehrer

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    I believe(!) that sanctions are in place here also. The only way the batteries would be saleable would be with a serious deposit like an old pop bottle. If you have grandchildren
    why would you risk their health with mercury? why not just give them mercury thermometers to play with.
     
  22. BMbikerider

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    Can I submit that is a silly and somwhat naive remark. With adequate storage, they (mercury thermometers) and perfectly safe. They don't leak, go out of callibration and will last for generations.I have one fitted to a 19th C barometer which is perfectly operational and accurate. You could also draw a comparison with giving children a bottle of household cleaning bleach to play with. We don't do we? Bleach is not on the banned list - is it?

    It is all a matter of common sense, sadly lacking in some. Mercury batteries can be easily re-cycled like all others. I would submit lead acid batteries as used in most motor vehicles are far more dangerous - so why are they not on the banned list. There are viable and almost certainly better alternatives such as lithium-ion. I use them on both of my motorcycles.
     
  23. Joel_L

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    I have several cameras that used the old Mercury batteries. I have modified most of the to use sliver batteries. They are not perfectly flat in the discharge but are much better than the Alkaline flavors. The drop through the diode ( the common mod ) is also not perfect because it is current dependent. But the reality is that in varying lighting conditions, I have not seen a negative impact in exposure. I shoot a lot of slide film and all has been well. I have several OM-1s I have done this to and a Canon F1 as well. No issues with the mod in any.

    The Zinc air batteries are also fine. Just keep in mind that they take some time from unpacking to being ready to go and do self discharge.

    At the end of the day, for me the diode mod and silver batteries work fine.

    Joel
     
  24. John Koehrer

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    The installation of a Schotkey diode gives you the perfect voltage to the battery. There is/are specific #'s for the right one though for consistency the silver battery is a must have.
    FWIW the #9 O-ring gives the proper fit for the smaller battery.

    "It is all a matter of common sense, sadly lacking in some. Mercury batteries can be easily re-cycled like all others. I would submit lead acid batteries as used in most motor vehicles are far more dangerous - so why are they not on the banned list. There are viable and almost certainly better alternatives such as lithium-ion. I use them on both of my motorcycles."

    easily recycled? Not so much, take 'em to a recycling center because you're not supposed to dump them in the trash. Without that serious deposit that's where most of them go.
    RE: mercury thermometers aren't most of them glass? it seems that your six year old won't really care. Turn mercury into that recycle center and it's considered HAZARDOUS
    material. Consider that as fake news or failure to know how to handle it safely...............Never underestimate the stupidity of the american people. Why do your think
    they put warning labels like 'keep feet away or fingers away from the blade" on garden tools?
     
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