Phottix ND300 Battery grip - reviewed.

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Phottix ND300 Battery grip - reviewed.

Postby BullcreekBob on Fri Oct 03, 2008 6:33 pm

I recieved the Phottix ND300 Battery grip last Friday. Once again Poon and the bargains section offered a mighty fine deal. $107 including delivery. A very hard to beat price, way less than a third of the Nikon MB-D10's price.

Anyway, I've never used a grip before; so it was all a new experience. Attaching the grip was simple, remove the plastic cover from a bank of 15 little metal pins sticking up from the grip, remove the "L" shaped rubber protector from the base of the D300, store the L shaped rubber in the same shaped storage insert in the grip, align the grip's screw with the camera's tripod mounting hole and turn the dial. The grip's battery compartment removes with a simple twist mechanism, insert an EN-EL3e battery, re-insert the battery compartment. Turn the camera on and shoot.

The camera automagically worked out it had another battery and started using it as per the default setting of Custom setting d11 - Battery Order. To get used to the new larger shape I went out shooting. At some stage, I didn't notice when, the battery in the grip depleted and the camera reverted to using the in-camera battery. Later I swapped the battery in the grip with a fully charged one, the camera went back to using the grip battery. No fuss, no problem.

Later on while driving from one WA wildflower location to the next, I reinserted the drained EN-EL3e battery into the grip and attached the supplied car-charger to recharge the battery. Apparently if I bought the Nikon supplied BL-3 battery charger cover I could use an EN-EL4 or EN-EL4a battery but I can't think why I would; given that for the same cost I could buy six more Phottix EN-EL3e batteries - however, the three batteries I've got will be more than enough to handle any situations I could envisage.

The ND300 also includes a magazine that takes 8 AA batteries. In addition to providing an alternate power source this allows me to get a higher fps rate. I set the D300 to take medium sized, "normal" jpegs, walked outside, pressed and held the go button. I let go when the shutter noise embaressed me. 83 images of a pack of fertiliser, all superb :) . The first one taken at 15:03:05.43 the last taken at 15:03:18.73 If my maths is right, that's 13.3 seconds elapsed time or about 6.24 images per second. If I'd used fully charged AA's I may have got higher, if I'd turned AF off, I may have got higher.

So, I imagine it will take a little time to get used to the feel of the grip, but it certainly does everything I expected and more. The two command dials work as expected, the on/lock switch works as does the shutter release button and the AF-on button. Ohh and did I mention the price - $107 delivered. That includes the battery grip, the EN-EL3e magazine, the AA magazine and the car charger. Unbelievable. I believe the grip can be used not just on the D300 but the D700 as well. Bargain.
Last edited by BullcreekBob on Sat Oct 04, 2008 2:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Phottix ND300 Battery grip - reviewed.

Postby Glen on Fri Oct 03, 2008 6:57 pm

Great review, thanks for the detail Bob
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Re: Phottix ND300 Battery grip - reviewed.

Postby jase80 on Sat Oct 04, 2008 12:49 pm

Nice review. Its convinced me to give a Phottix grip a go for my D90.
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Re: Phottix ND300 Battery grip - reviewed.

Postby StarForge on Sat Oct 04, 2008 1:53 pm

Great review! I've not used a grip myself and I think I'll consider the Phottix grip in the future now :D

You mentioned it can be used with a D3? Is that possible since it has a built-in grip?
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Re: Phottix ND300 Battery grip - reviewed.

Postby BullcreekBob on Sat Oct 04, 2008 2:16 pm

StarForge wrote:You mentioned it can be used with a D3? Is that possible since it has a built-in grip?

No, that was me typoing while tired. It works on the D300 and D700.

Cheers
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Re: Phottix ND300 Battery grip - reviewed.

Postby StarForge on Sat Oct 04, 2008 3:22 pm

Hehe, I know exactly what you mean, cheers :D
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Re: Phottix ND300 Battery grip - reviewed.

Postby aim54x on Sat Oct 04, 2008 9:41 pm

BullcreekBob wrote:Apparently if I bought the Nikon supplied BL-3 battery charger cover I could use an EN-EL4 or EN-EL4a battery but I can't think why I would; given that for the same cost I could buy six more Phottix EN-EL3e batteries - however, the three batteries I've got will be more than enough to handle any situations I could envisage.


Phottix offers the Kosmo as well (an EN-EL4a + BL-3 replacement) I have been looking but since I have enough EN-EL3e's and AA's at the moment I have not purchased one yet. Do you want to try that as well?

Thanks for the review, it does sound like Phottix is onto a winner here. Too bad I already have a MB-D10 (courtesy of BH)
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