Kessler Mag Max 3A is a new battery adapter that accepts DeWalt 20V Max (and aftermarket versions) and 60/20V Flex Volt batteries (labeled as 18V and 54/18V in Europe and other counteris). It outputs regulated 14.4V 3A on a Lemo 2 pin, a 5.5mm female connector and D-Tap connector. Additionaly, it also outputs 5V via USB connector.
Standard V-Lock (V-Mount) or Gold Mount batteries are not very cheap, especially when you need to buy a whole set of them. Powering multiple lights plus a camera on set with no electricity can therefore require a significant investment.
Kessler now comes with an interesting solution. They are releasing the Mag Max 3A adapter, that uses affordable DeWalt 20V (18V) batteries from any hardware store and converts them into 14.4V 3A outputs. It actually surprises me that noone came with this concept earlier. Let’s take a quick look at the adapter.
Kessler Mag Max 3A
As Kessler states, the Mag Max 3A was developed to fill a void in the market for an inexpensive battery solution with a common battery that can be found in almost every country in the world. DeWalt was chosen as the battery of choice due to its popularity with filmmakers and creatives and due to its availability.
Kessler Mag Max 3A is a battery adapter that accepts DeWalt 20v Max (and aftermarket versions) and 60/20V Flex Volt batteries and outputs regulated 14.4V 3A on a Lemo 2 pin, a 5.5mm female connector and D-Tap connector. Please note, that DeWalt Max are labeled as 18V and DeWalt Flex as 54/18V batteries in some countries – these are the same batteries and are therefore also supported. The Mag Max 3A also has 5V output for USB accessories, phones, etc.
The Mag Max 3A is a reliable and affordable power solution for motion control equipment, lights, cameras, monitors and many other accessories, but it is at the moment limited to a 3A maximum draw. Later this year, a 10A version will be coming out and it will have USB-C PD 20V charging.
To calculate battery time with a given device you use the equation:
Discharge time = battery capacity (Ah) X battery voltage (V) divided by wattage of the device you want to use with it.
Affordable DeWalt Batteries
DeWalt 20V Max and 20/60V Flex batteries come in various sizes (1.5Ah, 2Ah, 3Ah, 4Ah, 5Ah, 6Ah, 9Ah and 12Ah). When using the Mag Max 3A with 30/60V Flex batteries, it only pulls 20V not 60V, but provides the extended operation time those larger size batteries offer.
When I briefly looked at the prices of these batteries, for example, a two-pack of original DeWalt 6Ah batteries costs around $170, a two-pack of 5Ah batteries costs around $120. With aftermarket replacement batteries, the price is even lower. Four-pack of these 6Ah batteries costs around $110. (Source of the prices was amazon.com.)
According to Kessler, 1Ah roughly corresponds to 20Wh, so 5Ah would be 100Wh. As I wrote above, one DeWalt 5Ah battery costs around $60. Standard V-mount batteries with 98Wh capacity cost between $200 and $300, but they also offer higher draw usually above 10A. The price difference is therefore quite significant and if you don’t need the higher draw, Kessler could be the right choice.
In terms of mounting, Kessler Mag Max 3A offers 1/4″-20 and 3/8″-16 tapped holes and pass-through holes for attaching to cheeseplates, tripod plates, camera carts, and so on. There is also a tapped hole on one end for use with strong articulating arms.
Furthermore, there are magnets embedded into the bottom of the unit to attach to all Kessler MagLink products (Second Shooter motors, Second Shooter controller, etc) as well as any suitable material for quick mounting.
Kessler will also offer optional belt clip attachment for using on a camera strap or belt, optional V-lock kit for attaching to V-Mounts, as well as optional Gold Mount Stud kit for attaching to gold mounts. Both V-Lock and Gold Mount kits are without pins and only meant to hold the adapter in place.
Price and Availability
Kessler Mag Max 3A is available now. For the first week starting with Januay 10th, 2020 it will be priced at $199 on the Kessler store. Later, the price will rise to $249 per unit. The price and availability of the optional accessories will be announced soon.
What do you think of the Kessler Mag Max 3A adapter? Would you try such a powering solution on your set? Let us know in the comments underneath the article.