Portable power for news crews - revised?

Grant Peacock

New member
Good morning everyone. I hope you're looking back over a great week (mine was mostly outdoors!)

There's a portable power unit that's becoming popular with crews in the DC area - 'Jackery'. The unit I have been assigned by my client (model 1500) is heavy, and I note that it generates 110 V AC at it's outputs. I am wondering why I can't take a compact (eg : Group XX') Pb-acid battery and just run out 12 V DC via individual cables. (skipping over significant losses, in the Jackery probably following 14.xx V DC from LiON @ source -> 110 V AC via inverter, then back to 12 V DC after device's individual power supplies deliver to device inputs)

2 questions on that idea :

a. What are the pitfalls of delivering 12 V DC direct from posts? Is voltage regulation needed?

b. Does anyone have a contact person that might make these at their bench?

And that's about the limit of my technical knowledge. I do currently have a fresh 24 V Pb-acid battery here that is designed for kid's electric toys, really small, and that would be another option, while it would involved DC -> DC reduction at the posts. I am comfortable making my own video and audio cables, but I am leery of soldering up joints that will have high current flows thru them (too easy to blow stuff up!).

Enjoy your weekend,



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There's a reason you don't see 12vdc on anything more than a few feet. Resistance and line loss makes it highly inefficient. Much better off converting to 110vac.
Thanks Mitch, but fortunately not a relevant point. Everything is within 'normal range' for low voltage work. I agree that it would not be wise to send low voltage over any greater distances - you're either relegated to significant losses, or starting to use some really heavy AWG cable. (there's that weight issue looming again). All this gear is on, or right under the tripod. 3 ft at most.
Milwaukee has a battery "generator " that uses 4 m18 batteries (the ones for tool line). 40 pounds with batteries and safe for electronics.