Battery manufacturer Core SWX have just announced a new V-Mount battery system lineup: the Apex 360. Available in both Low Voltage (14.8V) and High Voltage (29.6V) versions, these 367Wh batteries are designed to power LED lights. Indeed, they don’t have D-Tap or USB output ports that are anyway useless when you need to power lights. So let’s take a closer look at these!
If you’ve never heard of Core SWX before, the US manufacturer has been making high-quality V-Mount and Gold Mount batteries used on sets worldwide. Some of their flagship products include the Hypercore NEO and Helix line of batteries that can power nearly all cameras out there.
However, over the last couple of years, the rise in battery-operable LED lights created issues for filmmakers and content creators. First, some lights require 14.4V, while other high-output LED lights need 28.8V batteries that can fry your camera if you’re not cautious. Next, LED lights require a constant and high load output, which not all batteries can achieve. To solve these issues, Core SWX announced a new lineup of V-Mount batteries designed to power LED lights: the Apex 360.
Core SWX Apex 360 – features
The Core SWX Apex 360 are 367Wh Lithium Ion V-Mount batteries that are designed to power LED lights. Indeed, Core SWX told us that they have a vision for the Apex 360 lineup to be able to separate camera from lighting batteries.
The idea behind the Apex 360 lineup is that they do one thing and do it well. For example, powering LED lights does not require D-Tap or USB power outputs, so Core SWX removed them to lower costs. Of course, you can use the Apex 360 to power a camera, but technically they are not meant for that.
The casing of the Apex is made of rugged reinforced polycarbonate to sustain the rigors of production. In short, the batteries should survive a couple of drops.
The batteries are 3.5″ x 6.3″ x 3.8″ for a weight of 3.6 lbs. Obviously, the Apex 360 are not “air-travel-friendly” batteries with a massive 367Wh capacity, so I don’t find the weight/size to be an issue.
Also, the front of the packs features a dual-sided LED gauge so you can quickly check your battery level. Furthermore, whether on charge or in use, the LED power gauge illuminates without you needing to press a button.
Low-voltage and high-voltage versions
Two models of the Apex 360 are available: one low-voltage (codename: Apx360v) and one high-voltage version (codename: Apx360hv). The “regular” low-voltage version has a current output of 24A continuous and an operational voltage of DC 12V-16.8V. The constant current output is essential, so your LED light does not turn off even if you still have battery life remaining.
Talking about run times, you can power an Aputure 300D Mark II at full power for close to 4 hours and a half with two batteries, which is impressive!
The Apex 360 high-voltage has an operational voltage range of DC 22V-33.6V and a current output of 12A continuous. This high-voltage battery is designed to power high-power draw LED lights like the Nanlite Forza 720, the Aputure 600 series, etc. However, you’ll need an optional battery adaptor plate for the Aputure 600-series LED lights.
Core SWX Apex 360 – accessories
Core SWX designed the HLX-2HV-DC Apex Direct Connect plates for the Aputure 600 series. But don’t worry, they made it easy! First, you’ll need to unscrew the LED light’s ballast battery plates. Then, cut the wires, clip the wires to the new Core SWX battery plate, and mount everything back. Voila, you can now use 14V and 28V Apex battery packs on your Aputure 600 light.
Core SWX came out for LED panels with two battery plates that clamp to your light stand. These plates can take one or two batteries and feature a 3-pin XLR output.
Last but not least, Core SWX released two dual battery fast chargers for either low-voltage or high-voltage batteries: the X2R. In addition, the Apex charger models can charge one pack in a little over 5 hours or two Apex packs in under 10 hours.
Pricing and availability
The Apex 360 batteries are available to preorder now and should start shipping in mid-January 2023. One Apex 360 battery pack will cost you $599 – the same price for the 14.8V and 29.6V models – and bundles with two batteries and a charger are available for $1.299.
While these batteries can seem expensive, if you do the maths, the Apex 360 cost per Wh is one of the most affordable at only $1.63/Wh.
For more information, please visit Core SWX’s website here.
What do you think about these new Core SWX V-Mount batteries? Do you like the concept of carrying separate camera and lighting batteries? Did you ever have issues powering your LED lights with batteries? Don’t hesitate to let us know in the comments down below!