PDA battery life

12 messages
28/07/2008 at 09:25

As a memory map and PDA user for my sat nav/GPS solution I have for three years been unable to use some of the main features on the hill as the battery runs out long before we get home, so I only use the system when navigation is tough poor visibility etc and stick to traditional map and compass for most situations (until I get lost). I leave the system on from the start of the walk until the end of the battery or walk whichever comes sooner for the data.

My real problem is, sadly I might add I like to analyse  the data and store the track as a route for later, if the battery runs out on the fells I loose it all along with the navigation facility should the weather and my average traditional navigation skills turn pear shaped. I toyed briefly with the idea of buying a Satmap system until I realised that the hundreds of pounds I have spent on memory map maps would be wasted and I would have to buy them again as satmaps version.

Solution for less than fifty pounds I bought an extended life battery, (www.mugenpowerbatteries.com)for my particular PDA the battery life has gone from 4 hours to about 11 hours. The original battery 1250ma the new one 3000ma and it comes with a new battery door cover to accommodate the larger battery. It still fits in the otter box (www.otterbox.com) which keeps my unit totally water and bomb proof.

I hope this may be of some use to others if indeed there are any others with the same challenges

28/07/2008 at 13:03

Not thought about a solar recharger (e.g. freeloader)?

From what I've seen they work in the UK's climate 

28/07/2008 at 20:20
good point but the challenge is keeping the whole thing waterproof and charging means keeping a connection port open on the otterbox
18/08/2008 at 13:29

 Before purchasing my satmap i sometimes used my mio 550 PDA on the hills and too only got around 4 hours life from the battery. A satmap would be a good solution but your right about the maps, you would have to purchase their maps to get the most out of the unit. You can however still use your memory map to plot the routes on your PC and then save as a gpx file and then send to your unit. I have the full uk at 150,000 satmap maps but use Anquet to plot a route along with this web site now. I would avoid the freeloader, although a great product in theory In reality it was a waste of time, i had two (one a replacement) for the West Highland Way last year and found them useless on solar power. If you go down the road of the expensive sat map option, there are evoucher sites offering 20 % off full price purchases , bringing the cost down to around £240 excluding maps.

Depending on your PDA , these may be available for your palm top.


18/08/2008 at 13:38
I get between one and two months use out of a couple of AA batteries in a battered old Psion. Why are modern devices so power-hungry? Even so, I'd love to be able to link my Psion to a solar charger, but there isn't a single solar charger on the planet capable of doing it.
18/08/2008 at 18:25

> Why are modern devices so power-hungry?

Psion 3MX: 16MHz, 16-bit processor. OS designed for low power use.

Modern PDA: 632MHz, 32-bit processor.  Microsoft OS.

How many mobile phones use Microsoft OS, and how many use Psion/Symbian?  There's a good reason most manufacturers use Symbian, and not MS bloatware.

25/08/2008 at 17:08
wouldnt it be nice If you could buy routes with the sections of os u need esp. for long distance trails... just like Harvey paper maps...
I just got a smartmobile with the intention of using it for gps at 1:50,000 scale but with gps turned on I get about 4 hours max, depending on how many times I check the screen ...
15/01/2009 at 12:22
I use Memory Map on my HTC pda / phone with an extended battery. It wil run all day and have room to watch a movie or some music in the evening.  I usually carry the standard battery and the extended battery with me on two day trip. I always sleep with the phone and spare battery to keep it warm. Works great for me.
15/01/2009 at 13:05
I use an Asus PDA and also get at most 6 hours, but I carry a full loaded spare.  Changing the batterie is a ...  I like the idea of a fatter batterie very much! Thanx!
15/01/2009 at 13:32
I got the larger capacity battery off fleabay for about £12 and its more than double the standard one. One thing to watch out for with these bigger batteries is in my case anyway the HTC reports it as almost flat when really it has about 40% left. Removing it and reinserting it gets the battery is correctly reported.
15/01/2009 at 19:20

Which prompts me to say that I'm now the proud owner of the 'latest' in Psion technology; a Revo.  Yes, only 10 years too late...  I thought I'd left my 3mx on the train before Christmas, but it seems that Santa's little elves managed to hide it so well that my repeated searches of the room didn't find it.  Fortunately, it turned up behind the curtains...

It's prompted me to dig out all my old Psions in various states of disrepair (broken 512k 3a, broken 2M 3a, broken 16M 5mx, software, memory chips, etc).  All screen cables, which seem fairly cheap, so I may repair them.  If anyone wants a 1MB Flash 2 SSD upgrading to 4MB, let me know...

Yes, very off-topic ramblings, I know...

31/03/2009 at 15:25

"I'd love to be able to link my Psion to a solar charger, but there isn't a single solar charger on the planet capable of doing it." ....Paddy

I thought the 3mx used AAs? Can't you recharge them in a solar powered recharger?

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