Author Topic: Sl-5500 Battery Life  (Read 5419 times)

spiffytech

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Sl-5500 Battery Life
« on: February 25, 2005, 11:22:00 pm »
How long can I expect from battery of the Zaurus SL-5500? I need a new PDA for school, and a Zaurus is my first choice. I'll mainly be doing word processing, probably using an IR keyboard. Backlight on. how long could I get without swapping the battery? If it couldn't make it through the school day on a single charge, how many batteries would I need to buy to get through? And finally, how long would it last surfing via wi-fi?

Brian

dougeeebear

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« Reply #1 on: February 26, 2005, 11:03:32 am »
Expect about an hour using wi-fi and full brightness.

Doug
Zaurus SL-C1000 and SL-5500
NetWalker PC-T1 (tablet)

spiffytech

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« Reply #2 on: February 26, 2005, 11:24:45 am »
What about minimum brightness? And howq about just word processing w/ min backlight?

kahm

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« Reply #3 on: February 26, 2005, 03:36:15 pm »
Quote
What about minimum brightness? And howq about just word processing w/ min backlight?
[div align=\"right\"][a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=68691\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a][/div]

You'll probably get 2-4 hours, depending on the age of your battery. An extender might be a better bet. I built mine out of a keyboard case for a Palm V and $5 in parts from Radio Shack. With 8xNiMH 2300mAh batteries (Energizer, about $13 Canadian for 4 from Wallmart) I got close to 24hrs from my 5500 when I flew to Japan.

 [ Invalid Attachment ]
Fujitsu U8240 "Stormtrooper" -  Zaurus Supplement
Libretto U100 | Sony Librie, Sony Reader
SL-C3100: Sharp 1.11JP (Kanji Dictionary/Translator) - LCD Top swap with C1000.
SL-C3000: pdaXii13 5.4.7, SL-C3000 5.4.9 - microdrive replaced with 8gb Sandisk
SL-C1000: PDAXRom Beta3 | SL-6000L: Sharp 1.12 | SL-5500: Cacko, 64-0 kernel | SL-5000D: OZ-Opie
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spiffytech

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« Reply #4 on: February 26, 2005, 07:54:19 pm »
That powerpack looks like it would be a good solution. Was it wasy to build? Is it used to just charge, or does it act like a high-capacity battery without charging the internal one on the Zaurus?

kahm

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« Reply #5 on: February 26, 2005, 09:26:58 pm »
Quote
That powerpack looks like it would be a good solution. Was it wasy to build? Is it used to just charge, or does it act like a high-capacity battery without charging the internal one on the Zaurus?
[div align=\"right\"][a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=68721\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a][/div]

It was pretty easy. I took 2x4 battery adapters  from Radio shack, bolted them to a slab of plexi glass to hold them together, and wired them in parallel to a jack.

Hooking the jack up to the case was the hardest part, and that was because I didn't want to cut any holes in the case itself.  I probably took an hour or so to build it.

It acts like the external charger would - charging the battery simultaneously with use. You can tell when the pack starts getting low because the charging light on the Z goes out.  I don't remember how long it will power the Z afterwords - you still get quite some time out of it.

The only down side is that when both the pack and the internal battery are exhausted the Z just turns off - it doesn't suspend because it still thinks it has power because of the plug being in. (AFAIK, anyway). Not a big deal as you can see when the internal battery goes down.

I was using it for my entire trip to Japan (~14 hours use), and it was still able to charge the battery by the time I'd made it to where I was staying. I left the Z on overnight just to exhaust the batteries.  I got an honest 16hrs out of it last year when I took a bus trip using 1800mAh batteries. You could probably get away using a 4 battery version for daily school use pretty easily.  8 batteries (~4.6 Amp-hours official rating - about the size of the battery on my P3-866 laptop) seems to be overkill.

I didn't have to use it on the way back because I'd bought my 860 while I was there, and my flight back was only ~6 1/2 hrs. It'd still be good for going war-walking with the 860, I suppose

The other thing to remember is that you have to use rechargeables - 4x1.2 = 4.8 volts.  The 4x1.5=6volts of alkaline batteries is a *very* bad Idea for the Z.


Instead of building your own, check out eBay for a power extender intended for a Compaq Ipaq. The Compaq 3600 series uses the exact same power connector and voltage as the Zaurus. You can usually find a cheap, unregulated 4 battery adapter for a few dollars.
« Last Edit: February 26, 2005, 11:14:16 pm by kahm »
Fujitsu U8240 "Stormtrooper" -  Zaurus Supplement
Libretto U100 | Sony Librie, Sony Reader
SL-C3100: Sharp 1.11JP (Kanji Dictionary/Translator) - LCD Top swap with C1000.
SL-C3000: pdaXii13 5.4.7, SL-C3000 5.4.9 - microdrive replaced with 8gb Sandisk
SL-C1000: PDAXRom Beta3 | SL-6000L: Sharp 1.12 | SL-5500: Cacko, 64-0 kernel | SL-5000D: OZ-Opie
Linksys WCF12; Sharp CE-AG06, CE-RH2, CE-170TS; iRiver USB OTG Host cable; Socket BT rev.E CF; Hitachi 6gb Microdrive

V-Man

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« Reply #6 on: February 28, 2005, 11:23:51 pm »
How to construct a simple cheap external battery box

Items needed
1. 1-6' power cord (radio shack part #273-1740) $3.29
2. 2-4 AA battery box (radio shack part #270-0409) $1.79 each
This is the one with an on/off switch
3. 1-Adaptaplug size "B" (radio shack part #273-1705) $2.19
4. 8-AA NiMH batteries (1600 mAh) $22.94
Total cost of items: $32.00

Cut the power cord in half and solder into the battery box. This is harder than is sounds for bumble fingered people like me.

You end up with two battery boxes (at $16.00 ea). The boxes are almost exactly half the size of the Z, so are not a problem to cart around. The voltage ranges from 5.34v fully charged to 4.1v fully discharged. This should not strain the Z's input. The only problem I have noticed is that if the box is left connected to the Z (w/ the Z on) until the box is fully discharged, the Z shutdowns very ungracefully and you will have to reset your Z. After I found this out, I used the box until the charge light on the Z goes out. I get four hours out of each box, with light on full and intermittent use of Netgear MA701 WiFi card. I made some AAA boxes and get about two hours from them. These things are tiny, but only 700mAh.

These prices are several years old, so have changed a bit.  Also, larger capacity NiMH batteries are out there.  I have been using these with a 5500 for several years with no problems.  So as long as you pay attention to the charging light, you should have no problems.  Let me know if I can be of any further help.

V-Man
SL5500 w/Sharp ROM 3.10
Netgear MA701 WiFi
Sharp  CE-AG06 Camera Card
Various memory cards
Various homemade power/battery packs
HP 2215 iPAQ

V-Man

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« Reply #7 on: February 28, 2005, 11:40:01 pm »
I also just found a good supply of very inexpensive lithium batteries (3.6V 1000 milliamp hour) and chargers.  I am currently testing them for quality (ie how they hold a charge, voltage minimums and maximums, actual capacity, etc).

I intend to do some expiromenting with these and a 7805 voltage regulator.  Two of these and the regulator will fit in a smaller package than the 4-AA battery boxes.  Four of these (combination of series and parrallel) may be able to supply 2000 amp hours at 5V regulated.  I may be able to incorporate a low voltage shut off circuit to eliminate the problem I experienced with the 4-AA boxes whereby the Z shutsdown most ungracefully upon battery depletion.

I may be able to create something monstrous and useful  in the way of another external battery box.  These batteries are cheaper than AA NiMH batteries and I have other uses for them if it doesn't work.  The charger may be a bit difficult as with my currently available stuff, I would have to charge each battery independantly by removing them from the box.  I will also try different charging schemes.  If the results are good, I'll post instructions (and suppliers).  Four batteries and one external charger were less than $27.00 delivered!  The e-bay seller delivered 7 days after purchase.  I want another charger and this will give me an excuse to use when I justify the purchase to my wifey.

V-Man
SL5500 w/Sharp ROM 3.10
Netgear MA701 WiFi
Sharp  CE-AG06 Camera Card
Various memory cards
Various homemade power/battery packs
HP 2215 iPAQ

ceffyl

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« Reply #8 on: March 01, 2005, 11:34:24 am »
Another option (albeit not as cool as these) is the pre-built BoxWave AA battery power source, which is used with their minisync USB sync and power cable: http://www.boxwave.com/products/batteryadapter/index.htm

It uses 4 AA batter. I have one but have't played with it yet. It's available for the 5x00 and 6000 series Zaurii.

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SL-6000 ROM 1.12
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caunt

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« Reply #9 on: March 02, 2005, 06:39:22 pm »
I bought a 5000d from ebay a couple months ago, who's battery lasted about 20min.
I tried an external battery pack at first...it works fine, but is a pain to carry around in addition to the z

I recommend buying a  couple of these:
http://www.allelectronics.com/cgi-bin/cate...T-42&type=store
they are the same type and voltage, just different shape.  There's a thread on this somewhere.  I have one taped to the back of the Z.  I cut up some flat cable wiring from a dead optical drive and connected the new battery to the internal terminals. (cover still closes with the flat wires).  

My Z is a couple of mm thicker, still sits in the cradle fine,  BOTH batteries charge as normal (the internal charger charges both at the same time) , and I have enough juice for my normal days usage.

Shdwdrgn

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« Reply #10 on: March 11, 2005, 01:28:14 pm »
Quote
I recommend buying a  couple of these:
http://www.allelectronics.com/cgi-bin/cate...T-42&type=store
they are the same type and voltage, just different shape.  There's a thread on this somewhere.

That thread is here -- https://www.oesf.org/forums/index.php?showtopic=7651
I'm still using that setup with two of those flatpack batteries.  My original testing with the backlight on full and wifi card installed gave a usage time of around 45 minutes.  With the additional batteries installed, I get over 5 1/2 hours.  I changed my powermode settings to never turn off the Z, just blank the screen, and I can easily leave it sitting around a couple days between charges (depending on actual usage of course).  After a typical day's usage (which generally does *not* include wifi usage), I generally have about 70% of my battery life remaining.

The biggest advantage of having a lithium battery inline with the original internal battery is that 1) recharging is done via the internal circuit so there is no need for additional chargers, and 2) the software battery indicators are accurate so you really know how much charge you have left and there is no ungraceful shutdown.

My biggest problem with any of the battery packs is that you end up with the battery flopping around or being in the way.  I have my battery packs held on with a rubber band (which generally breaks about once a month).  I really wish someone made a cover to fit the back of the Z which bolted in place of the original cover, but provided an extra 1/4" of space for 'extras'.

kahm

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« Reply #11 on: March 13, 2005, 12:40:15 am »
Quote
I intend to do some expiromenting with these and a 7805 voltage regulator.  Two of these

V-Man
[div align=\"right\"][a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=68920\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a][/div]

That's going to be a lot of strain on a 7805. It's been a while since I checked, but I think the 7805 can only provide 1 amp of current, and that's with a good heatsink.
Fujitsu U8240 "Stormtrooper" -  Zaurus Supplement
Libretto U100 | Sony Librie, Sony Reader
SL-C3100: Sharp 1.11JP (Kanji Dictionary/Translator) - LCD Top swap with C1000.
SL-C3000: pdaXii13 5.4.7, SL-C3000 5.4.9 - microdrive replaced with 8gb Sandisk
SL-C1000: PDAXRom Beta3 | SL-6000L: Sharp 1.12 | SL-5500: Cacko, 64-0 kernel | SL-5000D: OZ-Opie
Linksys WCF12; Sharp CE-AG06, CE-RH2, CE-170TS; iRiver USB OTG Host cable; Socket BT rev.E CF; Hitachi 6gb Microdrive

padishah_emperor

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« Reply #12 on: March 13, 2005, 06:23:10 am »
Quote
What about minimum brightness? And howq about just word processing w/ min backlight?
[div align=\"right\"][a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=68691\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a][/div]

Maybe my 5500 had a fault, I got about 1 hour maybe 1.5 hours at most ever at low to average light power while doing wordprocessing.   Towards the end it went down to 45 mins, just playing mp3's.  I didn't use any wifi or anything, just a 512MB CF card and a 32MB MMC.  Could be the battery just dying though, I did consider replacing it. Great machine though  
Left Linux and Linux PDAs... sorry, got boring.  Switched to Mac.

E.J.

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« Reply #13 on: December 21, 2005, 10:38:46 am »
It seems like my Z's battery is giving it's last breath....

 I would like to know what is the aproximate life span of the original Sharp battery.

 Reading this thread i have started to seriously think about building my own battery pack, because Sharp Battery is not that good (and its expensive).

 I already read the thread about the Sony LIS2106 battery pack, it really is cheap-but-powerfull alternative.

 The only thing that i dont like is having the battery attached  to the Z with a rubber band

 Does somebody know about a smaller alterbative to the LIS2106?

http://www.allelectronics.com/cgi-bin/cate...T-43&type=store

 Give a look to that.

 I found a site with cheap original batteries on sale:

http://store.l-f-l.com/cgi-bin/cp-app.cgi?...MP=BAC-shopping
« Last Edit: December 21, 2005, 11:36:47 am by E.J. »

sdjf

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Sl-5500 Battery Life
« Reply #14 on: December 25, 2005, 08:47:05 am »
I recall reading somewhere in my sl5500 manuals that the battery is good for about 400 charges.  The number of charges is apparently a more critical factor than the number of hours of use.

Now, what _isn't_ clear is what counts as a charge.  Sometimes, as in after doing a soft reset, the charging light comes on even though it's been running on wall power via the adapter the whole time.

Don't know whether it's the number of times the light comes on, or the number of REAL charges that's important.  Anybody know?

TIA,
sdjf
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