Jump to content


CNers have asked about a donation box for Cloudy Nights over the years, so here you go. Donation is not required by any means, so please enjoy your stay.


Nikon D800 external power

  • Please log in to reply
5 replies to this topic

#1 MirkoV69



  • -----
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 33
  • Joined: 27 Jan 2020

Posted 19 September 2020 - 02:57 AM

Good morning 

I am thinking about having my Nikon D800 modified to Full Spectrum


Along with the modification comes the topic of powering the camera

Standard battery , especially in the cold, does not last much


I already have a Nikon D5200 that I use via a dummy battery power bank & usb step up


Same setup is not usable with the D800 as the camera locks up after first shot , I assume too little current is delivered


So I think about connecting the camera directly to 12V from car battery I use to power the mount.

Camera specs rate input at 7-12V 2.5A


 I would ask for some experience before frying the camera.


How do you power your Nikon full frame reflex?






Attached Thumbnails

  • D800.jpg

#2 Readerp


    Ranger 4

  • *****
  • Posts: 341
  • Joined: 22 Jun 2019
  • Loc: So Cal

Posted 19 September 2020 - 10:01 AM

I use this PSU with my D810 and D5300




My battery setup is a LiFePO4 which puts out 13+ volts, so I would not dare to hook up the camera directly to the battery.


The power supply on this unit puts out 9v, hooked up to my inverter, I run the camera all night long no problems.

Edited by Readerp, 19 September 2020 - 10:03 AM.

#3 AgilityGuy


    Viking 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 686
  • Joined: 20 Jun 2015
  • Loc: Northern CA

Posted 19 September 2020 - 10:46 AM

I use a Kendrick Astro Digifire FX pro controller - here: https://www.kendrick...ireFX and FXPRO.  It powers dew heaters and my D800E from a 12 volt power source.  It works very well.  Pegasus Astro has a similar instrument - https://www.highpoin...xBoCr8oQAvD_BwE and it also includes multiple power outlets for cameras, dew heaters, etc. and an integrated powered UBS hub.  I learned about it after I purchased the Kendrick device.  The Pegasus would have allowed me to eliminate the powered USB hub that rides along on top of my telescope.

Edited by AgilityGuy, 19 September 2020 - 10:47 AM.

  • MirkoV69 likes this

#4 KLWalsh


    Viking 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 847
  • Joined: 19 Feb 2014
  • Loc: North Georgia, USA

Posted 19 September 2020 - 02:54 PM

I bought Gonine power supplies for my D810a and my D5100. They both work great.
Bought them via Amazon.
  • MirkoV69 likes this

#5 otoien


    Explorer 1

  • -----
  • Posts: 83
  • Joined: 15 Jan 2019
  • Loc: Fairbanks, Alaska

Posted 19 September 2020 - 05:39 PM

I would not power the D800 directly from a car battery. It could output as much as 16V when fully charged unless you add some voltage regulation. When the D800 is powered with a larger battery in the grip, the connections are different from those in the battery compartment, so there is no guarantee that the ones in the battery compartment will take more than 9V, which is the rating of the original Nikon power supply.


The reason you have problems with too much power draw from your battery bank setup is likely the power spike during the faster mirror movement. If your 5V battery bank can output 2A and output from the 5-9V DC converter is good for 1A or so, this can be remedied by applying a supercapacitor circuit between the DC converter and the D800. Here are the data from my D500; I would expect D800 to be pretty similar:


The dark blue line shows power draw by the D500, while the red line shows the leveled power draw from the DC converter. The voltage drop (ice blue line) is a little higher than in a real situation as I am measuring current drop over a 0.1ohm resistor. The two spikes are mirror up and mirror down movements. I believe the last lower plateau is the writing to the SD-card.


Here is the schematics. C1 is a 1F 9V supercapacitor.  The diodes and the resistor are needed to limit the charging current of the supercapacitor and it also brings voltage to the supercapaitor down to a safe level since 9V is just at the rating.  The 10 Ohm resistor is large to not burn out at the start of the supercapacitor charging. I ordered the components from Digi-Key..



I built this circuit into my SkyTracker that had some space beneath the circuit board. It is powered by a USB based power bank and a 5V-9V DC converter. I might get another set and make a standalone version in a box or embedded in potting material for occasions when I am not bringing my SkyTracker (i.e. meteor showers).


(It looks a bit messy due to the hot glue used to fix it in place).

Edited by otoien, 19 September 2020 - 05:43 PM.

  • MirkoV69 likes this

#6 MirkoV69



  • -----
  • topic starter
  • Posts: 33
  • Joined: 27 Jan 2020

Posted 21 September 2020 - 01:26 AM

Thanks all for your input!





CNers have asked about a donation box for Cloudy Nights over the years, so here you go. Donation is not required by any means, so please enjoy your stay.

Recent Topics

Cloudy Nights LLC
Cloudy Nights Sponsor: Astronomics