A brand new Canon 5D Mark II will still run you about $2500 dollars retail on any website. A used Canon 5D Mark II Body over on eBay will still run you over $2100 dollars and that's not knowing it's true condition. Canon right now is running some specials on their Refurbished Equipment website with a 10% off Promotional Code bringing down the Canon 5D Mark II (refurbished) bodies to $1799. Yeah that's a pretty sweet deal for a full frame body with excellent low light capabilities. Sure it's a refurb, but it's coming from Canon with a 90 Day warranty.
If you're looking to pick up used equipment, I think these official Canon refurb units are still a safer bet than going for a used version off the auction site. Aside from the 5D Mark II, there's 7D's, T2i's, 60D's, and a bunch of lenses including L series refurbished. Promotional Code is fam211 and the link is here.
The fact that the Canon 60D uses the same batteries as the 5D Mark II & Canon 7D was both a blessing and a curse. For those who already had these batteries, it's nice not having a different set of batteries and charger to add to your gear list. A single OEM LP-E6 will run you well over $70 dollars. For those who are looking to buy extra ones, prices on aftermarket LP-E6 batteries seem to have inflated. There was one brand on Amazon that dropped their decoded (chipped batteries that communicate with camera to show battery life) batteries down to $18.00 dollars, but now brought them back up to $60 bucks!. Yeah they know that there's a new market out for these batteries after the Canon 60D release.
If you don't care about the battery meter, there's plenty of Aftermarket LP-E6 batteries that run around (2)pcs. for $15 dollars. Very very cheap, but they will need their own charger. It's not suggested these be charged on the OEM charger. I think I have 6 of those myself which still run to this day, and are probably a year old or more.
I was still waiting for more reviews on these items to see if they will actually work well and hold up as good batteries, and if the battery meter really works. A friend of mine has a wedding lined up on 10/10/10 - of course the most popular wedding day this year, and so he's invested into the Maxtek Replacement Li-ion Battery For Canon. He's had it a short while and seems to work exactly like OEM, and charges on the OEM charger (can't do this with un-chipped batteries). I've asked him to give us a demo video of the batteries in use, but he says they work exactly the same. This battery is compatible with the Canon 5D Mark II, Canon 7D, and Canon 60D.
Most people might not remember this, but long ago Digital Cameras used standard AA batteries, not rechargeable Lithiums. Battery technology was poor and run time was terrible, so you really tried not reviewing your images on the LCD. I remember owning an older camera that had the option to plug into an AC outlet. The brick converted AC back into DC for the camera. So I fashioned up a relative Voltage RC Car battery as my mobile power source. Worked great, dirt cheap, fast recharging, and lasted much longer than AA batteries. Ask around, you'll be surprised how many photographers are using RC car batteries for many projects.
Note: Don't follow my Lead. This could be a disastrous project.
My mind is wandering and I'm going to stir up some thought here about a possible DIY power pack for the Canon 5D Mark II. Taking a peek at the Swintronix PowerBase 70, I believe it has a rating for 14 volts but the Canon LP-E6 Battery is only rated at 7.2 volts. This sounds like there are (2) 7 volt batteries in this PowerBase. The 14 volts can be offered if these two 7 volt batteries are run in Series. Extended run times can be offered if these two 7 volt batteries are run in Parallel.
Here's the simple parts needed for a possible DIY Power Pack for the Canon 5D Mark II or 7D. First a way to connect power into the Camera. Available is an aftermarket ACK-E6 AC Power Adapter designed specifically for LP-E6 cameras like the 5D Mark II & 7D. This very specific adapter seperates from the 'Brick' leaving you with a simple adapter, not to be confused with the ones that don't seperate from the power brick. I won't need the brick, just the Battery adapter part with short wire lead.
Second, just one 7.4v Lithium Rechargeable Battery will do the job powering up the camera, but if I want longer run times, i'll need to run two 7.4v batteries in Parallel. The single Canon LP-E6 Battery is rated at approx 7v 1800mah -aftermarket batteries around 1500mah. To make this worth carrying around, each 7.4v battery should have at least twice the milliamp hour rating if not more. The battery image below shows almost double the milliamp hour rating from the stock battery, so it's possible it may last twice as long. click image
Outside of those two parts, i'd need to take a short trip to Radio Shack for some wire adapter to mate the two, a decent looking electronics project box for the enclosure, and 7.4v battery charger for RC cars to recharge. I think it's quite possible to create a DIY Power Pack for the Canon 5D Mark II or 7D for a Total price roughly under $125 dollars. I really don't see why I need to make something like this, i'm just thinking out loud as usual.
Yo! Big ups to Waylon from Vimeo for cutting this video!! The 7th annual San Francisco Crawfish boil was fun and the Crawfish was off the hook. The weather was sunny and in the 90's at the Marina Green (lucky day).
We ran around picking up some footage for the guys who put this together every year using a Canon 5D Mark II + 24-105mm IS, Canon 7D + 24mm F/1.4, Zoom H4n, & Rode Video Mic. Each of the cameras rocked the Fader ND Filters to get our shutter speeds to a manageable level while allowing us to shoot with Depth of Field. I'm not the greatest video editor, so Waylon cut up a quick one for us with his FCP skills. There will be a full cut for the event owners later.
I thought this was old news and everyone was already using these. I purchased these batteries just weeks after the Canon 5D Mark II was announced! Yeah they are pretty old, but still rocking and rollin'. Apparently after posting my aftermarket battery video for the 550D & T2i, I received many questions on the 5DM2 / 7D aftermarket batteries.
Let's face it, many of us put the 5D Mark II on the back burner when the 7D and T2i came around. With poor audio quality, no frame rate options, and a high price tag, it wasn't much for video. The only thing it had going for it was the Full Frame. With the new Canon 5D Firmware out to improve on those limited abilities, the video above posted by David Dang makes me fall back in love with my Canon 5D Mark II all over again. Now go sell your 7D's and T2i's, then click here to buy the Canon 5D Mark II!