If you use a camera flash, you use batteries. If you use camera flash with a diffuser, you use more batteries. If you use multiple off-camera speedlights, you use even more batteries. Managing rechargeable batteries and keeping the spares handy can be a challenge. ExpoImaging, a manufacturer and distributor of photography accessories, has just released the Rogue Indicator Battery Pouch that aims to help photographers (and virtually anyone who uses small portable batteries) stay organized. This new pouch not only stores your batteries but it also helps you identify which batteries are full of juice and which ones are empty.
The Rogue Indicator Battery Pouch is made of a tough heavy-duty fabric, and it feels very well built. It has two compartments that can fit 4 AA batteries each (8 total). If you use AAA batteries, you can store 12 of them in this pouch. If you do video work and employ 9V batteries, the Indicator Battery Pouch can accommodate 4 of them. The images below show AA and AAA batteries in the pouch.
In addition to storing the batteries, the Rogue Indicator Battery Pouch makes them more accessible during a photoshoot. It features two velcro straps and a hanging loop on the back. The straps are adjustable and can be used to carry the pouch on your belt or even your camera bag strap (or any strap for that matter).
Using the loop, you can hang the Rogue Indicator Battery Pouch on a light stand, so the spare batteries are right next to your off-camera flash, and you don't need to run to your bag to get the spares for your speedlight.
Another cool feature of the Rogue Pouch is the indicator windows, through which you can see color plastic cards inside the pouch. The cards are green on one side to indicate charged batteries. The opposite side is red to mark the depleted ones. So, you just need to flip the cards over to match the state of the batteries in the pouch.
The indicator concept of the Rogue Pouch is quite simple and effective, and, while we liked using the pouch out in the field, there are some quirks to be aware of and tips to remember.
For an indicator card to be visible in its window, you need to insert it in the pocket inside the battery compartment. After testing for some time, we felt like the chance of missing a pocket is about 10% unless you follow our tips below. If that happens, you don't see the card, and the window stays black. It's not a complete fiasco though, because if you open the flap, you can see what color it is, so you just don't see it through the window.
To maximize the chances of properly inserting the indicator cards, load the batteries into the pouch first and then pull the side of the pouch out a bit to expose the pocket inside.
Another simple tip is to insert the cards corner-first, instead of doing it straight down. This just makes it very easy to get the cards in.
As a side note, since there are two compartments in the Rogue Indicator Battery Pouch, all of the batteries in each compartment should be of the same charge state. It works perfectly for speedlight photographers like us, because most camera flashes use four AA batteries. However, we are not sure where you would use the sets of six AAA batteries or the sets of two 9V ones.
The suggested retails price of the Rogue Indicator Battery Pouch is just under $15 (USD). This is quite competitive if you compare it to similar products from Think Tank or LensCoat that cost from $10 to $20 but don't necessarily offer the stand and belt attachments and have no indicator capabilities.
We are used to store batteries in simple plastic boxes that cost from a few cents to a couple of dollars, but they didn't really offer much functionality other than keeping the batteries in one place. The image below shows the Rogue Indicator Battery Pouch next to 4-, 8-, and 12-battery boxes.
To conclude, the Rogue Indicator Battery Pouch is a well-built accessory for your rechargeable batteries. The belt (strap) and light stand attachments help you keep your spare batteries readily available. The indicator feature is a great way to always know the state of your batteries. Despite some minor quirks with the indicator cards, the Rogue Indicator Battery Pouch is quickly becoming our tool of choice for managing speedlight batteries during our photo gigs and when testing the photo gear for the reviews. We can recommend it to any strobist or anyone who often uses rechargeable batteries. The Rogue Pouch can also make a great gift for your photography friends. Please check the most recent prices below.
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