BlackMagic Pocket Cinema Camera DIY 12V External Battery Pack

Now that more people have received the BlackMagic Pocket Cinema Camera, there are dozens (if not hundreds) of comments and questions about solutions for poor battery performance.

At the time, I had just a few days to work with the camera and needed to come up with a quick solution, so I ran over to the electronics store and fashioned up a DIY adapter cable to work with my Tekkeon MP3450i batteries (love these things).

[Note] Tekkeon may already sell an adapter tip to fit the BMPCC directly. I had no time to test.

I wasn't quite sure how long each battery would last, but during a full day of shooting I only needed one battery (and it wasn't even drained at the end of the day). I'm not saying this is a perfect solution, but it's one that I had to work with and can guarantee it does work quite well while we're still waiting for other affordable solutions from companies.

Tekkeon-1 Tekkeon-2 Tekkeon-3 Tekkeon-4

Tekkeon-5 Tekkeon-6 Tekkeon-7 Tekkeon-8
Click Images for Larger View

Here are a few images on how I created a cable with a female connector to one side, and the correct male barrel on the other. This charges the battery inside of the BMPCC as well as powers it. The next time I have a chance, i'll actually do a full test on actual run time.

find-price-button Tekkeon MP3450i 5-12V Battery Pack

47 thoughts on “BlackMagic Pocket Cinema Camera DIY 12V External Battery Pack

  1. mikkel bovin

    I got three old notebooks that i nearly threw out-but then i thourght to my self- if my Blackmagic Pocket, can use from 12 to 19 wolts of power,to ercharge the batt inside, why not just solder a plug on my old notebookbatteries, and use them as external power ?

  2. Paul Hardt

    -Emm & other posters This Tekkeon seems to be a tremendous solution for my BMPCC. As was mentioned back at the beginning of the posts, the Tekkeon battery supply and it supplied plugs include the PA-L23 adapter (PA-L23: 2.3×0.7) as part of it’s pack of tips.
    I know the power in on the BMPCC is 2.35 x 0.7.

    Did any of you find out that this plug worked with the BMPCC?

  3. Emm

    Post author

    @Eric - I believe that listing comes with both batteries (1 main + 1 cell) and then he throws in the mount.

  4. Emm

    Post author

    @jozef - No I don't feel the capacity has changed. I still use them for everything and I travel with my batteries to keep my tablets and phone charged up. I own at least 6 of them at this point.

  5. jozef

    Hi Emm,
    i am considering buying a tekkeon battery and i suppose you got yours 2 years or more. Did the capacity went down after years of use? I readed reviews on amazon where almost everybodys statement was that the battery dies after a year or sooner.
    Also i noticed that there are two versions MP3450 and MP3450i. Does only work as UPS (Uninterruptable Power Supply)? Do you think i could use the MP3450i with a dummy battery on 5D mark II instead of an AC wall adapter for stopmotion purposes? Those cheap AC Adapters on Ebay have 8V output -i readed that causes more noise due more sensor heating noticeable in longer exposures. So could i set 7.5 V output on MP3450i and plug it in wall for nonstop work? If using so would it affect battery life somehow?
    I know thats a lot of questions and iappreciate your help.

    Thanks Jozef

  6. Emm

    Post author

    @mariess - It is much much smaller than most adapters I found at my local electronics store. I don't know the exact size, but i'll try to find out.

  7. Emm

    Post author

    @apostolos - Yes they are on sale just about once a month from Amazon. I don't recommend buying from random sellers since it's easy to make fake looking ones.

  8. Emm

    Post author

    @apostolos - If you keep checking, the Sandisk SSDs often go on sale. These have been reliable for me (so far) and is recommended by BlackMagic Design.

  9. BlackMagic will probably be my next major camera purchase, within the next year or so, maybe the 4k when it becomes available. With that in mind I'm shopping for SSDs for a laptop. What kind of SSD are you using Emm? I know BMCC has a recommended list.

  10. Emm

    Post author

    @jonny - Yes if you find the right adapter tip, that battery will also work. Of course it won't work as well as the Tekkeon I have so it might be worth going for the more expensive Tekkeon at some point instead of carrying three or more of the Anker batteries.

  11. Emm

    Post author

    @FabDex - To say the camera is unusable is an overstatement. Blackspots on highlights can be fixed in post or when they release new firmware. Doesn't make the camera unusable. If you understand it's limitations, you can work around it.

  12. FabDex

    I've read on another blog that the BMPCC has terrible artifacts, like black spots on "hotspots" and weird white "bubbles" on some highlights. The footage I've seen of these artifacts is truly horrifying, making the camera pretty much unusable (or unreliable) in some situations. Emm, have you experienced this so far ?

  13. robert

    Thanks for the response.

    The BMPCC is nearly my dream camera. I think having dozens of batteries keeps it a pocket camera in operation but as collective pieces of equipment in a bag/case they can start to take up much more area.

    E.g GH3 with one or two batteries versus BMPCC with enough batteries to last a day. The GH3 then becomes smaller.

    They should have made the camera use Sony NP-F770 batteries (

    Lots of people have them lying around and I doubt people would complain if the hand grip part was slightly bigger (depthwise, to accommodate a np-f770) - it's the one place on the camera they could afford to make larger.

    What do you think?


  14. Hey Emm:

    I'm posting this here because I'm under the impression you don't read the old posts. You own the Canon eos-m, correct? How is the autofocus in video with the new firmware? I'm thinking of picking one up at the price point that it is now to do exactly that, some autofocus in video, because the 70D is out of my budget for the moment.

  15. CPM makes a kit for these batteries with clips that mount to their belly plate and even a bridge to combine it with an add-on battery.

    You can get it through B&H as well.
    The USB adapter allows you to power some audio recorders like the Tascam DR60D, lending itself to a run-and-gun setup. If you really want to get slick, you could solder a PTAP splitter and power multiple 12v accessories.

  16. Alex

    Its just such a shame to be forced to make a tiny camera into one that is twice the size in the end with the battery. I'm hoping to use this for aerial shooting and would really like to just stick with the internal battery. How long does that usually last just by itself if its on constantly? I have to change out the quadcopter battery each flight anyway (10-15 min) so I guess its not huge to swap out the BMPCC battery as well, but such a shame to turn something tiny into someting larger.

  17. Emm

    Post author

    @robert - The cable that comes with that won't work for the BMPCC. Even if you could get it working, it's a true brick so be prepared that it will add a lot of weight to the camera.

  18. Emm

    Post author

    @Lee Mullen - The orignal BMCC is the same. They call it a Cinema Camera and should use external power. The internal battery is there so that you could swap the external one while the camera is still running.

    With all the features this camera offers, they could have made it larger and used larger batteries, I don't think anyone would have cared.

  19. My question is WHY have Blackmagic done this? They knew the battery life is a joke yet for some odd reason choose to throw a spanner in the works. Terrible.

  20. Joseph

    Thanks so much, I look forward to it. It might be really helpful to put together a list for first timers (as this camera will be the first camera for probably a lot of folks) of accessories that you might need to make the camera easier to use, like:

    1. Extended battery options
    2. ND and other filters
    3. Rigs/grips
    4. Lens options
    5. SD card recommendations
    6. SD card readers
    7. Tripods

  21. Emm

    Post author

    @Joseph - I'll put together what I can, but right now I don't have a BMPCC. Probably next week??

  22. Emm

    Post author

    @Lukas - I've had 4 of these batteries for a few years now, and they still rock. I don't feel like they've lost any charge. I always have at least one in my bag when I travel. Great for keeping the tablets, iphone, and even my Laptop going (see this article).

  23. Lukas

    Love that battery.

    I's equivalent of 4x Canon's batteries for 7D. I've also used it for my LED lights, and during Sandy hurricane - to charge my phone.

  24. Joseph

    It would be super helpful if you could do a video on a DIY no-budget rig for these Tekkeon batteries and the BMPCC for those of us who the BMPCC is going to be our A camera and have spent all our money on the camera and the absolute necessary accessories to make the camera function, Lens, ND, Cards, etc.


  25. Emm

    Post author

    @Joseph - If it is included with the package, then it's possible that it will work. I don't have the tips to test this out (I sort of threw them away). Hopefully i'll get another set and test this out, but at least I know that this battery is a really solid solution. This might further interest you, and this is the same setup I would using to power the BMCC

  26. Joseph

    So the battery on B&H states that it comes with the PA-L23 adapter as part of it's pack of tips. the PA-L23 is 2.3x0.7, now the power in on the BMPCC is 2.35 x 0.7. So this should work right out of the box no?

    If not Why?

  27. Emm

    Post author

    @Mark - Actually no weird adapters needed. This Tekkeon plugs right into the BMCC and powers it up. I've run my BMCC on this battery many times. Of course there are probably better solutions out there for BMCC, I just happened to have these around.

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