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Thread: MB-D12 to grip or not to grip

  1. #1
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    MB-D12 to grip or not to grip

    I spent sometime today at my local dealer, and got to look/feel the Nikon MB-D12 grip. Strange design IMO coming from Canon.

    Pro:

    Well made, good feel. When added to the camera it gives you a very nice addition in both balance and weight. However:

    Cons:

    1. You can only add (1) EN-EL15 within the grip. This struck me as a bit strange as the conventional design of most vertical grips is that you remove the battery from the camera body, and then double them up in the grip. (At least the Canon grips I have used in the past). Here you can leave one battery in the camera body, and then have your 2nd battery in the grip. Which means of course each time you need to charge the battery in the camera body, off comes the grip.

    2. Even if you don't mind taking it off, I use an L bracket. Currently RRS is not shipping the L bracket for the D800 and has no pics gets on their site, however I am hoping that it will allow you to slide out the tray that holds the batteries. I am using an older RRS generic L bracket and the only way it mounts is to block the battery tray from opening. Long term not where I want to go.

    3. If the RRS L bracket does allow for the battery tray to slide out, that only will help if you run batteries in the grip. If you want to have a battery in the camera, then you still will have to take the L bracket and grip off each time you have to charge. Not really user friendly.

    4. The other solution would be to purchase the EN-EL18 which will give a much longer life. This is the standard cell apparently for the D4. Price is about $169.00 for the battery, which is OK, but to charge it, you have to purchase the $350.00 charger. I looked on Nikon's site and can't find any reference to a single charger. I guess they don't sell the D4 charger separately. Long term I like the idea of the EN-EL18, but that's all told about $600.00.

    To me a much more simple design would have been to allow (2) up loading of the EN-EL15.

    Great look and feel on the grip, and if have big hands, like me it's pretty much a needed accessory.

    Does anyone know if you can purchase the charger for the D4? Or does Nikon ship the same 2 port charger with the D4?

    Thanks
    Paul

  2. #2
    Workshop Member glenerrolrd's Avatar
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    Re: MB-D12 to grip or not to grip

    Paul

    My decision was easy because I have a D4 which I use for sports . So I have the dual charger and one EL18 battery to share . I like the height of the grip but want to watch the weight . I took out the EL15 and standardized on the larger battery in the grip . This gives plenty of captures and I carry one extra EL18 as my reserve . So when I use the D800E I use the grip with the EL18 and carry one back up EL18 in my vest or jacket.

    You can buy the same two battery charger that comes with the D4 and yes it costs $350 plus you need a BL 5 to use the EL18 (another $200 together ) and then $450 for the grip .

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    Re: MB-D12 to grip or not to grip

    Yes, the use of the EN-EL18 makes more sense, just the cost to get there. However the AA option may give the same longer use, as I can use 2200 millamp AA's for now. The EN-EL18 is like 2600 millamp. Just have to wait a while on that solution.

    I also missed:, you don't have to take the L bracket off to get to the EN-EL15 in the camera, just unscrew the grip, the L bracket will stay on it.


    Paul

  4. #4
    ronvanderkolk
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    Re: MB-D12 to grip or not to grip

    I have bought the grip purely for the ergonomics. I never use a battery in the camera, only in the battery grip, so the grip does not have to come off all the time. When the battery is empty I just take it out and put a charged one back in.

    In the studio I prefer to take out the battery and use the AC adapter. Using the live view all the time would otherwise drain the battery within the hour.

    I prefer the EN-EL15 over the EN-EL18 for its better price/capacity ratio.

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    Senior Member danielmoore's Avatar
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    Re: MB-D12 to grip or not to grip

    It's inevitable that aftermarket grips will be produced. There's rumblings on the net for a couple only weeks away. The decision will be much easier when the cost is. I also subscribe to Ron's practice, a single battery in the grip is a comfortable and more stable option where those are one's primary criteria.

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    Administrator Bob's Avatar
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    Re: MB-D12 to grip or not to grip

    I like the grip a lot.
    My usage us to have one battery in camera and one in the grip but to drain the grip battery first. So far, I have not had a shoot that completely consumed one of the two batteries so that seems pretty good to me.
    -bob

  7. #7
    Super Duper
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    Re: MB-D12 to grip or not to grip

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob View Post
    I like the grip a lot.
    My usage us to have one battery in camera and one in the grip but to drain the grip battery first. So far, I have not had a shoot that completely consumed one of the two batteries so that seems pretty good to me.
    -bob
    Thats the best senario in my opinion, especially if shooting an event. Let the battery in the grip drain 1st and when you have a break and notice it's low, just pop another one in the grip. Using it this way, the battery in the camera will generally last through bany grip battery changes.

    Dave (D&A)

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