The HyperCore battery, from industry staple Switronix, is a combination of power with everything else a user may want, including aesthetics. Its main trademark is the HyperCore cell, which can handle average 10A draws for multiple hours without losing service life. This is complemented with intelligent internal technology, 1,000 charge/discharge cycles, well-backlit LCD right on the front, a sleek, rubberized body, and a slightly figure-8-leaning design with ergonomic finger grips in the middle. There’s also a USB port, useful for powering transmitters and mobile devices, and a P-Tap output. The internal technology consists of a highly accurate readout computer, a hibernation feature that will have you making fewer runs to the charger, and safety sensors that’ll protect the battery during charging.
The HyperCore battery was released at NAB 2014, and since then has been praised by customer reviews specifically for the practicality of the above features. The transition for Switronix to this higher-rated battery from its decade-successful PRO-X lineup was inspired two years prior to the NAB release, when Switronix was tasked with sustainably and reliably powering a high-draw military application. To deliver, Switronix requested a higher C-rated cell from its Canadian-based cell manufacturer MoliCell, and in return was presented with a steady workhorse that ran the military application very successfully. This cell was then named the “HyperCore” and was put through two years of collaborative effort by the Switronix team to become part of what the HyperCore battery is now, a 14.8V lithium-ion machine dedicated to powering advanced cameras.
The two-year transition placed a big focus on developing a practical LCD with a reliable readout. The result is a fuel computer that takes an aggregate view of past usage and charge/discharge performance and delivers a run time that’s accurate down to the minute. When the battery is in use, run-time is provided in hours and minutes. When the battery is in stand-by mode, an estimate is provided based on a dummy load of 30W, and percentage readout of remaining charge time is given when the battery is charging. The LCD is located on the most highly visible part of the battery and it features a bright backlight that turns on via a push-button. There’s also a 4-LED gauge on the side at which one can quickly glance. The hibernation feature was designed to preserve state of charge when the battery isn’t in use for extended periods. It consists of an accelerometer and a clocking device that trigger a deep sleep, with the LCD included, after 48 hours of continuous on-shelf non-use. However, upon the slightest movement, the battery comes back up to full power at maximum capacity.
The HyperCore lineup includes 98Wh and 190Wh models in V-mount and Gold-mount versions, and a 150Wh model in a Gold and a V-mount. Based on a 25W load, the 98Wh models are estimated to run for approximately 3.5 hours, the 150Wh models for 6 hours, and the 190Wh models for 7.5 hours. In addition to being compatible with all mount-particular Switronix chargers, the HyperCores were also designed for cross-platform compatibility to allow you to possibly retain chargers you may already own. The V-mount models can be used additionally with IDX and Sony V-mount chargers and the Gold-mount models work with all Anton Bauer Gold-mount chargers featuring firmware version 3.6 and up.
Prominent industry professionals were among the first to adopt and commend the HyperCore batteries. Among them is Emmy-Award winning wildlife and natural history cinematographer Andy Casagrande, who used a 98Wh HyperCore to power his Phantom Flex 4K and RED Dragon for Discovery Channel’s Shark Week. Casagrande compliments Switronix with being “on the cutting edge of innovative and reliable power products for the world’s most advanced camera systems.”