I would like to switch to using low self discharge batteries instead of regular batteries in several of my electronic devices. To be honest, I haven't had the best experience with rechargeable batteries in the past, but I think that was mostly my own fault for forgetting to charge them before using them.
I looked through an old camera case and came up with:
8 Energizer 2500 mAh AA batteries that say high energy rechargable on them
4 Duracell 1800 mAh AA batteries that say accu on them
6 Rayovac hybrid 2100 mAh AA batteries - I understand these are actually LSD cells
an Energizer CHDC charger and a Rayovac PS32 charger
These batteries were all intended for digital camera use. I stopped using them as I wasn't happy with the runtime and I never seemed to remember to charge the batteries before use. From what I've recently discovered is that the Rayovac Hybrid are actually LSD. I have not charged these batteries in at least 12-14 months as I know I haven't used or charged these batteries since before I moved last July. After learning that these were LSD cells I put two of them in one of my Icon Rogue 2 lights but no dice. I then took a different two and low and behold the light works great. It's a bit less bright than with the new Energizer alcaline cells that I took out, but I find that impressive nonetheless.
I stopped using these batteries as I was not happy with their performance in my Canon digital camera. From doing some reading I see they tend to drop to a bit over 1v under load so I have a feeling Eneloops would work better in the same camera as they are supposed to hold a higher voltage under load. I'm wondering if my camera just thought they were dead due to the voltage drop even though they were not. I plan to use these batteries in flashlights. I have 2 Icon Rogue 2's and one or two Maglite Mini LED's that these will probably work nicely in. I also have a few non-LED mini maglites.
Seeing that I have a Fenix LD01 on the way to be my new EDC light I picked up a pack of Duracell precharged batteries at Staples yesterday. They are the made in Japan/white cap version that are commonly referred to as Duraloops. It is my understanding that these are just as good as the Sanyo Eneloops (if they aren't just rebadged)
I did a couple quick searches and I found that both chargers I have are 'dumb' timed chargers and will not be the best for long term use of any new batteries that I purchase so I would like to get a good 'smart' charger. I don't see the need to spend $50 or more on a charger, but I've found a few that might work well and wanted to see which would be best or if I've missed anything.
Duracell CEF23 under $20
This is the Australian version, but apparently it is the same and comes with 4 AA batteries. There is a chance these might be duraloops too? This seems like the most economical option for a non-used charger
Sony BCG34 $33
Comes with 4 precharged Sony AA batteries that will likely be more similar to the Rayovac Hybrids than Sanyo Eneloops?
Lacrosse BC-700 $30
This seems like the best charger out of the bunch as it is more customization and will also discharge (not sure I need that though) it does not come with any batteries making this the most expensive option.
Are there any other options that I'm overlooking? I was looking at possibly getting this Sanyo Eneloop kit that comes with a charger. Is this a smart charger? If this is a good smart charger than I would probably just get the kit and call it a day.