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Insta360 One R Vertical Battery review, FAQ, tips, endurance test (yes it has a 1/4 TRIPOD HOLE!)

Insta360 One R vertical battery review and FAQ
Insta360 One R vertical battery review and FAQ

If you’re curious about the vertical battery or wish your Insta360 One R had a tripod hole, then check out these vertical battery FAQ, tips and endurance test.

One of the most commonly asked questions I get about the Insta360 One R is about the non-swiveling tripod adapter that I showed in my One R tips video.  You can 3D print one, but another option is to get the vertical battery.  Here is everything you ever wanted to know about the vertical battery.

Executive Summary

Should you get the vertical battery even if you won’t be using the dive case?  If you use your One R primarily as a 360 camera, then arguably the One R with vertical battery is an attractive option because of its built-in tripod hole and more conventional design like the Insta360 One X.  But for action, the standard One R would be a better choice because it would be more sturdy and would be waterproof.  You should also be aware that there are a few bugs (see below – they should be resolved soon).   Nonetheless, I do recommend it if you often use the One R 360 mod.

FAQ

  1. What is the purpose of the vertical battery?
    It is used primarily for the 360 mod dive case and aerial edition.  Another benefit is that it has a tripod hole, unlike the One R camera case which uses a GoPro mount.  It can also be useful if you want the lens to be aligned exactly with the selfie stick.  Another benefit is that the lens will be farther away from the mounting point, so for example, if the camera is handheld, your hand will look a bit better than if you held the One R with the normal bracket.
  2. How much is the vertical battery?  Where can you buy the vertical battery?
    The battery is $49, or $59 with the vertical bumper.  You can buy from Insta360 by itself, with or without the vertical bumper, or in a package with the dive case, with the aerial edition, or aerial edition add-on.
  3. Why does the vertical battery cost more than the standard battery?
    The vertical battery has more parts (including USB connector, charging electronics, etc.).  Also, economies of scale.
  4. What is the weight of the vertical battery?
    46.2 grams.  The One R weighs 141.3 grams with the 360 mod and vertical battery, without the vertical bumper.  By comparison, the One R with standard battery weighs 128.9 grams.  But to actually use the standard One R, you’ll need the bracket.  Together they weigh 183.3 grams, therefore in actual use, the One R with vertical battery is 42 grams lighter (I don’t have the vertical bumper yet, but someone told me it weighs about 10 grams, which would still make the vertical battery setup lighter by about 30 grams).

    Insta360 One R vertical battery weight
    Insta360 One R vertical battery weight. Only Mic from 360 Rumors provides this level of precision in his reviews.
  5. What are the dimensions of the vertical battery?
    Approximately 35.19 mm x 44.44 mm x 27.54 mm.

    Insta360 One R vertical battery dimensions
    Insta360 One R vertical battery dimensions. This is why 360 shooters trust 360 Rumors more than any other review site.
  6. How do you use the Insta360 One R with the vertical battery?
    You plug in your mod to the core, and plug the core via USB to the vertical battery.  The vertical battery has a USB pass through for both data and power.   To plug the core to the battery, you need to transfer the USB door.
    I also recommend turning on the auto rotation option.  From the main screen, swipe down for the settings.  In the next page, look for the cube with the small arrow in the corner.  Tap on it to turn on the autorotation.
    You can shoot the One R with the vertical battery but the One R can be knocked off, so if you want to shoot with the vertical battery, I recommend getting the vertical bumper, which is a thin plastic frame that goes around the One R to avoid accidental separation of the units.
  7. Will the display autorotate when using the vertical battery?
    The menu will autorotate if you turn on the autorotation option, but as of May 2020 (firmware 1.1.30), the live view will be sideways (but stabilized).   When viewing the photo or video on a phone or desktop the video will be correctly oriented.
  8. How is the stitching quality?
    It’s the same as the standard One R.
  9. Does the vertical battery have a USB cover?  How do you remove the USB door / USB cover and transfer it?
    Just gently pull the USB door off from the core.  The cable has a small bump at the end holding it in.  The vertical battery’s USB port has a hole for the cable.  Push the cable into that hole (I recommend using long nose pliers to hold the cable and push the cable in).

    Insta360 One R vertical battery cover
    Transfer the Insta360 One R USB cover to the vertical battery
  10. But I don’t want to remove the USB door from my Core!  This is a terrible design!
    You can get a separate Core.  And a pacifier. 👶
  11. How do you mount the vertical battery to a selfie stick?
    It has a metal 1/4-20 tripod hole.
  12. How long does the vertical battery last?
    In my testing, I found the vertical battery to record for around 42 minutes before overheating.  This is similar to the One R with the standard battery.
    I used a Sandisk Extreme Pro and shot indoors without a fan or air conditioning, at approximately 72 degrees Fahrenheit.  The first 30 minutes were recorded as one video, then the next 12 minutes were recorded as a second video, with a short gap of around 2 seconds between the videos.  Then a message popped up about overheating and the camera stopped recording automatically (but did not shut down).  It was extremely hot (too hot to touch). I started another recording, and it recorded but after 2 mins. 46 seconds, the recording (and the screen) just turned black, while the video continued recording.
    It is possible to record over 3 hours with external power and the “mad max mod.”
  13. How can the vertical battery be heavier than the regular battery, but have similar capacity?  Don’t you know about the first law of thermodynamics?!? You’re a liar!
    I’m just posting my results.  You’re free to test them yourself.  BTW did you forget that the vertical battery has its own USB connector, pass-through USB port, charging electronics, and metal tripod hole? 🖕
  14. Is the One R waterproof when using the vertical battery?
    No.  But you can use it with the 360 mod dive case.
  15. Can I use the One R with vertical battery for action?
    You can, but it is not as sturdy as when used with the normal bracket.  The modules can separate.  The split lens 360 mod connection is even more precarious. The vertical bumper helps keep them together but still won’t be as sturdy as the bracket.
  16. Can I use the 360 mod lens cap while using the vertical battery?
    Yes.
  17. Can I access the memory card?
    To access the card physically, you need to disconnect the battery.  Alternatively, you can use the pass-through USB port which can transfer data as well.
  18. Can I use a microphone with the vertical battery?
    Not yet.  I’ve connected the Insta360 microphone adapter but the Core doesn’t appear to recognize the microphone adapter is connected when using the vertical battery.   I think Insta360 can fix this.
  19. Can I use the One R with vertical battery with lens guard?
    No.
  20. Why can’t Insta360 allow the lens guard to be used with the vertical battery?
    They can’t create accessories for everything.  If the lens guard is important to you then obviously you shouldn’t use the vertical battery.
  21. Can you use the vertical battery with the 4K mod or 1-inch mod?
    Yes, but you need to hold the camera sideways or else the video will be in portrait orientation.  The 4K mod and 1-inch mod cannot autorotate because they are not 180 degree lenses.
  22. Does the vertical battery have any bugs?
    I expect Insta360 to fix these bugs very soon:
    As of May 2020 (firmware version 1.1.30), the live preview is not oriented correctly (but the video or photo will be correctly oriented).  Another issue is that I cannot playback any photos or videos while using the vertical battery.  I can see thumbnails but when I tap the photo or video, it doesn’t move (the actual photo or video is normal on the phone or desktop).  The USB microphone doesn’t seem to work with the vertical battery.  Finally, if you connect the One R with vertical battery to your PC and you disconnect the One R, the One R stays stuck in USB mode.
  23. How do you charge the vertical battery?  How long does it take to charge?  How do I know if it is fully charged?
    With a USB Type C plug.  The charge lamp turns on while charging and will turn off when the battery is full.  It seems to take about the same time to charge as the One R with standard battery when charging with a USB cable.
  24. Can I use the Insta360 One R quick charger with the vertical battery?
    No but you can use a USB Type C fast charger.  I haven’t tested different chargers though.
  25. Can you charge the vertical battery while using the Insta360 One R at the same time?
    Yes, apparently.  The charge indicator on the Core does not turn on but the vertical battery charge lamp appears to show it is charging.
  26. Can you use the vertical battery and standard battery at the same time?
    No.  The vertical battery cannot be inserted when the standard battery is mounted and vice-versa.  Only 360 Rumors goes to this level of incredible detail.  Nobody else.  Nobody. 😎

    Vertical battery cannot be used with standard battery.
    No you can’t use the standard battery and vertical battery at the same time.
  27. Will Insta360 sell the One R with the vertical battery as a package?
    I’ve suggested it to them.  Not sure if they’ll do it.
  28. Is there a camera bag I can use with the One R with vertical battery?
    Yes I’ve been using the LowePro Portland 20 or Portland 30.  The Portland 20 is more compact and is a very close fit with lens cap attached.
  29. Can you see if the vertical battery will expand from heat after recording a video for 23 minutes 37 seconds using a Lexar 64GB Micro SD card?  Can you try this while on a bicycle moving at around 10mph in 68F weather while facing east (in Sunny 16 conditions please)?  And no, I don’t share your videos or posts, and I don’t use your affiliate links. You should be doing this as a free service!
    OK I have the answer.  But I have to finish my next video first.  I’ll tell you after that (maybe).

About the author

Mic Ty

9 Comments

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  • Thanks Mic for your detailed review. It’s You. Only You. Noone else even comes close. My dive case and vertical battery arrived today (unfortunately still chasing down my warranty replacement camera) but I was wondering, have you found a US source to buy the bumper case by itself? Due to their order bundling rules (no batteries shipped with non-chargeable items) I could not order the bumper when I ordered my dive case / battery bundle.

    • Thanks Jeff! Hopefully other people realize it too! 😀 Re vertical bumper, I’ve been looking for alternate sources myself, and so far I haven’t found any. I suspect they’ll show up on eBay at some point, but the first ones will ship from China, which will usually take a month to ship.

  • Great review. You covered pretty much every dumb-arse question I had. I have just received the aerial edition but wondered about using the battery in norma filming.
    I am not in America and so the imperial system is kinda foreign. Yes, I could just convert the measurements (68F=20C) but if you could just add the metric equivalents it would target you much more to your international visitors 🙂

  • I primarily use my One R to record videos of the cross country team that I coach. This means I carry my camera with me and record while running. Would you say the vertical battery base and bumper is secure enough for this? I wouldn’t consider my running an “extreme activity,” but it does bounce around a bit at the end of the selfie stick.

  • Thank you for the review. I purchased the One R specifically to use for 360 video while in high speed watersports (primarily windsurfing), where I would usually have a GoPro attached at the end of the sail boom. After a couple of uses I realised that the one R is not waterproof in such situations without a dive case (informed by the Insta360 repair team after the camera stopped functioning in my second ever use session), so I went along and ordered this dive case to use for watersports while waiting for the camera to come back from repair.

    I’m wondering though, since the dive case and vertical battery use a tripod mount, rather than a standard GoPro mount, how secure would it be if I mounted it on a sail and went for high speed sailing? I understand there is included a tripod-to-GoPro mount transformer. If I mount the dive case to that transformer, then the dive case with GoPro mount onto a sail mount, would that be sturdy? I worry that especially given the vertical orientation, if the dive case is repeatedly hit with water at high speed, the tiny tripod screw will break off from the GoPro mount, and my camera is going to go flying off into the sea. Do you think the tripod mechanism would be strong enough to manage that?