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Wireless batteries

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by quigg, Oct 5, 2008.

  1. quigg


    Jul 27, 2008
    Norfolk, VA
    I know there has been a ton of threads about which battery to use and what lasts the longest, what I am wondering is why manufactures don't include an internal rechargable battery that lasts longer than a typical 9v, with the option to swap out the internal battery, or to just put your wireless device in a cradle. The technology is there, I want to know why it hasn't been implemented yet. I would be willing to pay extra for such a feature.
  2. bongomania

    bongomania Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    It hasn't been implemented because musical instruments make up only a tiny fraction of the electronic product development in the world, and nothing in the new-product-development world uses old-fashioned 9V batteries, so there is literally no motivation for the format to be developed and manufactured. Almost no demand, and almost no profit to be made.
  3. quigg


    Jul 27, 2008
    Norfolk, VA
    All I am saying, is that it wouldn't be hard for X company to add rechargable batteries to Y product while it is still in the design phase (larger capacity 9v cells are out there, they are just larger than normal). This is a development that I would like to see in the future, and like I said, I would be willing to pay extra for it, they wouldn't even have to do two production runs on the transmitter pack, they could just come out with an enlarged battery cover and the option to purchase the charger and 9v cell from them.
  4. I often wonder if battery sizes will ever standardise again. I liked AA, AAA, C, D etc, it was easy to understand. Nowadays if you need a new battery for your mobile you need to set aside an afternoon to trawl hundreds of types to find the right one!

    "Sorry Sir, your phone is too old for us to stock batteries for, it came out like two months ago!"

    Until something like this gets standardised it's just too hard for the ma and pa manufacturers to take on. Plus, the demand is for batteries with much lower voltages than 9V.
  5. gm jack

    gm jack

    Oct 5, 2008
    Reading UK
    Really, that would be aimed at a tiny market who are not prepared to pay for batteries, and do not want to use a power supply.

    And rechargeable batteries get less effective over time, making them worse than the other two in the long run. I would suggest just getting a decent power supply like a Diago and just using one plug socket to power all your pedals.
  6. JanusZarate

    JanusZarate Low End Avenger Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 21, 2006
    Petaluma, CA, USA
    I would like to present some thoughts against proprietary rechargeable cells and charging stations in mainstream musician gear (wireless systems included).

    Imagine this: It's the night of a big gig. You forgot to charge your nifty wireless unit on its charging station. You have an hour until the gig, but it'll take an hour to charge the unit - and you live 30 minutes from the venue. What do you do?

    Sure, you probably have a spare cable, but you've now lost your freedom to roam and do stage tricks. :D

    Most convenience stores have 9V batteries. No matter where we are, it usually isn't too difficult to get our hands on some spare 9V batteries, even on short notice. You can't do that with a built-in, non-removable rechargeable cell. And for a unit that might have a special removable battery, buying an extra sounds great. Until you consider that nothing else you own can use that special battery.

    Maybe I'm exaggerating the likelihood of disaster and inconvenience, but for now, I think your standard alkaline, lithium, and Ni-Cad rechargeable 9V batteries will suffice, especially since they're easy to find and can work with most of your gear.
  7. bass.player


    May 30, 2006
    I have 2 sets of 2 rechargeable batteries which I recharge both before a gig. If those fail/get lost/etc. etc. i always keep an extra set of 2 Alkaline batteries in my case. Then there are still cables in worst case.
    I saved a lot of money using rechargables and the risk is second to none. imho....
  8. Bassamatic

    Bassamatic keepin' the beat since the 60's Supporting Member

    There are several problems that we face. We deal with this all the time developing new products.

    1. Many of the products out there were designed a long time ago when standard batteries were all that were available, and we are now stuck with them.

    2. Low-cost rechargeable batteries have a lot less power than a standard Alkaline type.

    3. The user must be able to EASILY get a battery in an emergency. The guideline was whether or not you can get it at Radio Shack.

    4. Rechargeable battery technology is changing very fast. You can hardly get Ni-Cads any longer, and the latest consumer technology is Lithium Polymer, with Lithium Titanate on the Horizon. All use different charging technology and they are not interchangeable. If you design one in, it may no longer be available in 5 years, while you are still using your equipment.

    5. If an item uses a standard type cell, it is usually not possible to use a rechargeable. The reason is that someone will put in a standard cell and try to recharge it - this is very dangerous, so many manufacturers avoid this.

    6. Sometimes you don't have the space for a standard cell, so you have to get a custom battery pack made.

    THE REAL QUESTION is WHY aren't our equipment manufacturers putting phantom power capability into our amplifiers so we don't need batteries? This has been used for 40 years in the studio, sending DC power up the audio cable to power microphones. It is NO PROBLEM to send 6-12 V up the standard guitar cable to power our effects and guitars. Our engineers have solved the technical issues years ago. It makes no sense that the manufacturers are not interested.

    Perhaps it is a "Chicken and Egg" issue - no one will do it unless there are products available to use it, etc. One of the big makers - Fender, Peavey etc. could do it as they supply both ends and get the ball rolling.

    My 2 cents.
  9. quigg


    Jul 27, 2008
    Norfolk, VA
    Ok, in an earlier post, I am pretty sure that I said you could swap out batteries (you don't HAVE to use rechargable batteries, the option is there). :) :bassist:
  10. Same reasons apply here. Cost, demand, market size, standardising technology etc etc.

    It would also require manufacturers worldwide to settle on a standard and start implementing it in their products - like you say, Chicken vs egg.

    Plus, run-of-the-mill phantom tends to have very limited current capability.

    PS: I'm no expert, but I read recently that Lithium Titanate, while promising in some areas, is not suitable for high current drain devices like camera flashes etc. (and possibly some digital fx pedals?!)
  11. almix12


    Apr 3, 2008
    same reason why we're using quarter inch instead of XLR so we could have a ground in there... imagine how many grounding buzzing problems that would solve. But its just cuz they cheaped out on it and had no intensive to and ppl just follow in their steps.
    edit: except for conklin basses... which nobody can afford
  12. Original designers probably never envisaged anyone using more than one FX box at a time. Nor would they have been able to predict the emergence of digital processing and the requisite high power drains and thus the requirements for power supplies and daisy chains. Nor could anyone have picked which companies basic design would prevail in the long run.

    In the end they try to strike a balance between cost and features, and it's the consumer who decides. So, it's all you guys faults! ;)

    PS: XLR's carry balanced signals which is a whole other box of fish. Worth noting, however, that ground loop hum is still a problem for mixing desks, so XLR's alone don't solve that issue.

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