Customer Review

103 of 105 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Big, heavy, functional, manly, June 11, 2008
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Nikon MB-D10 Multi Power Battery Pack for Nikon D300 & D700 Digital SLR Cameras - Retail Packaging (Camera)
May 2012 UPDATE:
I agree with others here that the shutter release button is too sensitive. In fact, it sometimes seems to fire multiple exposures uncommanded. Press the release, several exposures. Strange. And I never did get used to regripping the camera after turning it vertical. So I don't really use the extra set of controls at all.

It's also somewhat of a pain to get to the first battery that's still inside the camera to charge it. It really would have been better to be able to fit two batteries into this external grip so I could slide the tray out and charge both batteries without having to unscrew the grip. This really comes into play when tripod mounted or in some other rig.

Original review:
The MB-D10 is really nice.

Battery Options:

It comes with two battery trays: one holds an EN-EL3e 7.4v 1500mAh lith-ion battery (same as what the camera holds). The other tray takes eight, AA batteries. Depending on which AA cells you install (Ni-MH, lithium, Ni-MN or alkaline) you can have 9.6 (NiMH at 2500mAh or more) or 12 volts. That voltage can crank the motor to its rated limit of 8 fps...at least until the buffer fills up and its frame rate slows while it writes to the card. You also tell the D300 via the menu which type of battery you have installed. It keeps track of charge for you based on the type. Very smart.

The gray EN-EL3e is an update to the D70's black EN-EL3. The EN-EL3e can power the D70 but the older D70 batteries cannot power the D300. That's because the newer EN-EL3e has three contacts on it as opposed to the EN-EL3's two contacts. That extra contact allows the D300 to track the entire life of the EN-EL3e. Interestingly, the D70's older MH-18 charger can charge the newer EN-EL3e as can the D300's newer MH-18a charger.

With an EN-EL3e in the camera body and another in the MB-D10, the D300 tracks and remembers how many shots you've taken on each battery, its percentage of charge remaining and even how many times the battery has been charged. When the battery as reached its design limit for recharges (years from now) the D300 will tell you.

The grip will also take the larger 11.1v/1900mAh EN-EL4 or EN-EL4a battery [...]
but you have to buy a BL-3 cover, which is really just the end of the battery trays mentioned above but without the tray. The cover clips to the end of the EN-EL4 and has a twist lock to hold and seal it into the MB-D10. [...]

I bought the MB-D10 because I had purchased a second EN-EL3e knowing full well I'd probably never use it. (My second D70 battery was rarely used because one battery powered the thing about forever.) So, to get some use out of my second D300 battery, I don't leave it in the camera bag...I carry it on the camera as a built-in backup battery. The D300 also allows you to pick which battery you want to use first: the one in the MB-D10 or the one in the camera. I tend to use the MB-D10 battery because it's easier to remove for charging. You have to unscrew the MB-D10 from the D300 to get the internal EN-EL3e out of the camera body. But even then the large thumb wheel allows quick and easy removal.

There is a solid rubber L-shaped plug on the camera body's bottom that protects the multiple contacts between camera and MB-D10. That plug stores in a special area on the MB-D10 so you won't lose it. And if you remove the MB-D10 for some reason to use the camera without the MB-D10, you can plug up the contacts on the camera immediately.

Controls:

The MB-D10 has a complete alternate set of controls on it for when you are shooting verticals: an end-mounted focus/release button with lock ring to prevent accidentally hitting it; an AF-ON button; Master (rear) and Secondary (front) selector wheels for changing program and other functions; and a four-way selector/navigation switch. It's a lot more than a battery back. The same controls your forefinger and thumb access when holding the camera horizontally are there when holding the camera vertically. And it really is more comfortable to hold vertically this way, even though you do have to get used to regripping the camera. I've shot verticals for so many years I'm still getting used to holding the camera in such a foreign way.

The MB-D10 fits the D300 like it was molded in one piece: seamless and very ergonomic.

It makes the camera quite large and much heavier, but it has a solid feel and for sure I'm not going to run low on power. It's also comforting to know I can buy some AA's anywhere in the world and be able to keep shooting should the EN-EL3e's not have available power for recharging. It's also nice to crank the camera to max frame rate if needed. Some say it also helps balance the camera when you have a really large lens on a tripod.

And it's just so...manly. Point-and-shoots are cute and handy but this thing really dresses up the D300 in a useful manner, adds performance and extends power enough for any conceivable assignment.

And in a crisis, you can swing the thing like a mace. It probably would not break even then....
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Showing 1-3 of 3 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Jan 15, 2010 1:29:06 PM PST
LCC402 says:
Thank you for a great review. I had been searching for info on the grip and was never able to find the answers I needed. Your review took care of every question I had. Thank you!

Posted on Feb 2, 2011 2:54:54 PM PST
HI... I can't seem to find any reviews for this being used with a D700... does anyone know where I can go to get some. Thanks.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 25, 2011 12:49:42 AM PST
D. Sloan says:
It will work perfectly with a D700.
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Location: Redondo Beach, CA USA

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