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Rechargeable AA batteries

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 LastBoyScout 06 Dec 2021

It seems that my ancient Energizer rechargeable batteries have stopped holding a charge. They've been in the charger all night and are still dead.

The rest of the ones I've got are a mixture of Uniross Hybrio 2400 series (which have been pretty good) and Duracell (which I haven't used much, but seem ok - impulse purchase from a bargain bin somewhere).

Before I go and buy some of the Uniross 2700 series ones, what's currently getting good reviews from the group?

Use will mainly be in children's toys (cameras), LED lights and bike lights.

I could possible also be persuaded into getting a new charger, as my Energizer one is pretty old and I'd expect newer ones to be more intelligent at optimising charging, so suggestions there, too, please.

Thanks in advance.

 Bog ninja 06 Dec 2021
In reply to LastBoyScout:

Panasonic Eneloop Pro batteries are pretty good, I use them for my work in my garmin gps and they seem to hold their charge well. I think the standard eneloops are a bit cheaper and probably fine for kids toys 

 tjin 06 Dec 2021

My Eneloops are still going strong after a decade. 

 Snyggapa 06 Dec 2021
In reply to LastBoyScout:

Eneloops along with a half decent charger are the winning combination.

Depends on how smart your current charger is , does it have a voltage display when charging - if so it is probably currently fine - or is it just a simple led that is always on?

 Guy Hurst 06 Dec 2021
In reply to LastBoyScout:

Standard Eneloop batteries and the TechnoLine BL700 charger will kep you powered up for years, possibly decades.

 Hooo 06 Dec 2021
In reply to LastBoyScout:

I've used 7dayShop own brand NiMH hybrid cells for years. They are less than half the price of Eneloops and I've never had one fail. My batteries do tend to wander off on a regular basis (I've never worked out where they go), so it's not worth it for me to pay extra for a battery that lasts more than a few years. Some of mine must be over 10 years old though.

 PaulJepson 06 Dec 2021
In reply to LastBoyScout:

Another vote for eneloops.  

 timjones 06 Dec 2021
In reply to LastBoyScout:

I am using Duracell 2500mAH NIMHs in a range of devices and have nothing but praise for their performance  when coupled with a cheap and cheerful EBL charger with 4 independent charging slots.

In reply to LastBoyScout:

Yet another vote for eneloop pro (or even just plain eneloop) *BUT* not necessarily for cameras.

Depending on the electronics I've had some devices "dislike" rechargeable batteries which are 1.2v not 1.5v nominal, even have a fenix torch that runs for only 45mins full power on eneloop but 3.5 hours on long life alkaline.

I'm all for rechargeables and a good charger that controls the batteries individually, but do read the device instructions to see if it likes rechargeables

In reply to LastBoyScout:

QQ while people are talking about eneloops, do any old battery chargers work? I bought some AAAs for a new headlamp and my wireless keyboard, not had to charge them yet but will soon. Only need to charge 1 or 2 at a time and don’t want to spend too much (I had a look at the Technoline one mentioned above but that was 50 quid)

In reply to LastBoyScout:

Ive multiple rechargeable run out in GPS when recently charged by old charger. I bought a smart charger after that and all batteries have been fine since.  
 

I don’t have eneloops but I’ve heard they have a slow discharge rate if not in use. Which may or may not be attractive depending on your usage patterns.

Does remind me of the old saying about Duracell batteries.  Last 6 times as long but cost 7 times as much.

Post edited at 14:46
 Guy Hurst 18 Dec 2021
In reply to BattyMilk:

The Technoline seems quite widely available for £35, which isn't much more than I paid for the previous version 10 years or more ago. In a nutshell it's a smart charger and so keeps batteries in top condition, unlike some cheaper models, and especially fast chargers. To me it was more than worth the money.

A friend of mine uses a Youshiko YC4000, which is a fairly obvious copy of the BL700 but does not feel as well made. However, he says it does a good job and he's pretty knowledgeable about tech stuff. It was a fair bit cheaoer than the Technoline,

 wercat 18 Dec 2021
In reply to Currently Resting:

I have an alkaline cell recharger and Duracells are always the ones that end up leaking after a few cycles - other makes far better

 ChrisJD 18 Dec 2021
In reply to LastBoyScout:

More +1 for enloops.

We've also got some of the 2500 mAh enloop variants as well (black versus white casing).  The white ones we have are 1900 mAh.

The older ones we have are Sanyo; later white and black ones are Panasonic.  The latter acquired the former years back ... shows how long the enloop can last.

I now use with the Panasonic 4-battery charger (~£24, but there are some deals with batteries included).

kids mainly use them in gaming controllers.

Post edited at 20:37
 troybison 19 Dec 2021
In reply to BattyMilk:

No, "any old battery charger" should not be used - you should use a specific NiMH charger for NiMH batteries and a Li-ion charger for Li-ion etc. They use different methods to detect full charge and by using the wrong charger, you risk overcharging the batteries, which will damage them and shorten their life. Also, cheap chargers may just run for a fixed time, so you may under or overcharge your batteries. It's worth paying for a good charger, right for the batteries you're using.

I found NiMH EBL AA batteries reasonable value, but don't believe the quoted mAh values - they give about 60% of that in real use. That's ok for my uses, mostly as clock batteries, coffee milk frother & remote control batteries. They hold charge well if stored. The Amazon ones also look cheap/good value.

I expect the Eneloops are better, but they're pricey - probably worth it if you really need the top performance in charge stored.

 SFM 19 Dec 2021
In reply to LastBoyScout:

We use a mix of Eneloop Pro’s( higher drain/value devices) and Amazon own brand( everything else). The difference is noticeable so the Eneloops pro’s are worth the initial outlay if you just need a few. At the moment we have about 30 battery operated things on the go and I don’t fancy  remortgaging just to buy some rechargeable batteries!   

 CurlyStevo 20 Dec 2021
In reply to LastBoyScout:

Standard eneloop if you want something to hold charge for a long time, pros if you expect to need to recharge fairly soon after starting to use them ( say less than a month or two). Pros hold more charge but discharge faster and can be charged less times before the degrade. I think standard eneloop also work better in low temps but you’d need to double check that.

I’ve had hybrio before and they are trash compared with eneloop. Whenever I checked my charged batteries the eneloop would be fully charged and the hybrio nearly empty.

Post edited at 10:58
 CurlyStevo 20 Dec 2021
In reply to LastBoyScout:

Eneloop also work well in colder temperatures unlike most nimh 

Post edited at 10:51
 CurlyStevo 20 Dec 2021
In reply to troybison:

The extra cost of eneloop is negligible per charge, it’s worth spending more to get a better battery than having the hassle of charging and replacing them more often.

Post edited at 10:55
In reply to Guy Hurst:

£50 ?????

I'm very happy with

https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B08HPCQLBF

and a decent USB-c (or micro USB) phone charger, it needs a phone charger - doesn't plug into mains directly. Seems to correctly sense batteries, charges all individually, does AA and AAA up to 12 at a time and only £16.99 even better I can use it in the car if I want

Post edited at 17:27
 troybison 21 Dec 2021
In reply to CurlyStevo:

On amazon a pack of 4 AA  Eneloop NiMH  costs £12.56 compared to £7.99 for EBL and is £5.64 for amazon basics. The amazon & EBL claim to have higher mAh charge storage, though I'd be sceptical about that.

Do you have evidence that the extra cost per charge is negligible?

 mark burley 21 Dec 2021
In reply to troybison:

In reply to all:

what about width? I have ebl and Duracell rechargeable batteries that don’t fit in my black diamond lanterns. 

 CurlyStevo 23 Dec 2021
In reply to troybison:

Look at it this way those envelop batteries will last 2000 charges per battery that’s 0.16 pence per charge. That in its self is negligible so any initial outlay differences are negligible per charge.

 Colin Wells 24 Dec 2021
In reply to LastBoyScout:

Ikea Ladda 2450 batteries are considered by many battery nerds to be Eneloop Pros in plain packaging (see e.g.  https://www.slrlounge.com/panasonic-eneloop-vs-ikea-ladda-are-they-the-same/)

I've used them for the last four years and they seem to be as good as Eneloops to me so it might be true.

The Ikea battery chargers have also proved very reliable.

Col

 troybison 25 Dec 2021
In reply to CurlyStevo:

I'd guess that most batteries get lost behind the sofa well before their 2000th recharge.

I'd also be sceptical about their performance being anything like the original after so many recharges.

 mike123 27 Dec 2021

in reply to all : is it possible to buy 4 x AAA eneloop pro s with a charger ? I can only find 4 x AA . having read through this thread I m trying to get two sets of 4 x AAA and can only find AA s . 

In reply to mike123:

> in reply to all : is it possible to buy 4 x AAA eneloop pro s with a charger ? I can only find 4 x AA . having read through this thread I m trying to get two sets of 4 x AAA and can only find AA s . 

Of course, you can pickup a pack of 4 enloop pro AAA (for about £14) https://www.amazon.co.uk/Panasonic-Eneloop-Rechargeable-Battery-Batteries-Black/dp/B00JWTCK62

and use a charger like the one I suggested (post above 20th Dec) for £16.99

 EddInaBox 27 Dec 2021
In reply to Colin Wells:

That link is a few years old, Ikea changed their battery range earlier this year.  They currently sell 2450 and 1900 mAh AA cells with slightly different shades of grey exteriors.  The 2450 mAh cells are similar in specs to Eneloop Pros, and the 1900 mAh cells have similar specs to regular Eneloops.  The new cells are still made in Japan, and since FDK is the only Japanese company that manufactures NiMh cells the Ikea Laddas definitely come out of the same factory as Eneloops but the speculation is that that they are made on different production lines and are quite possibly the same as older generation Eneloops rather than the newest generation.

Next time I pass an Ikea I will be picking some up because in my estimation the small increase in performance of Eneloop branded cells is not worth the extra cost and will make no difference in the real world.

My current Ikea cells have been going over a decade and I put their longevity down to two things, slow charging at 200 mA most of the time so the cells don't get warm.  Also I used my charger to test each cell's capacity so I could group them in matched sets.  The first cell to expend all its charge gets driven backwards by the other cells in the device if you continue to use it, which damages the cell, but if all the cells are closely matched they go flat at the same time.

 StuDoig 27 Dec 2021
In reply to troybison:

Loosing behind the sofa I can't help with, but I've some eneloops that have been on the go for c.10yrs and seen a lot of discharge / charge cycles in each year.  I genuinely don't think the performance is noticable lower, though I do use a decent charger that has a "refresh" function that I use each year and us supposed to help with longevity.  I also charge slowly which is less damaging to the battery than rapid charging.  The eneloops have definitely outperformed other rechargeable units I've used, but can't comment on more recent market offerings since I've not needed to replace.

Cheers!

Stu

 troybison 11 Jan 2022
In reply to StuDoig:

For sure, a good charger will help with longevity.

Some brands make completely unrealistic claims for both capacity and charge/recharge cycles. It's a shame they're allowed to get away with it.

I'm sure Eneloops are top of the range, though & your anecdotal evidence is valuable.

I haven't used the EBL's long enough to judge their longevity.


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