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Thread: Eneloops: what charger do I need? (info and discussion thead)

  1. #61

    Default Re: Sanyo chargers

    I think it's best we keep the lists separated as the Sanyo list is already huge and their capabilities are slightly different
    PM me, I'll work with you on the Panasonic list

  2. #62

    Default Re: Eneloops: what charger do I need?

    Quote Originally Posted by WalkIntoTheLight View Post
    Based on Eneloop trickle-charge testing posted a few years ago, I disagree. It appears that trickle-charging and overcharging is extremely destructive to Eneloops. So, if you want your batteries to last, you absolutely must get a smart charger, and preferably one that doesn't trickle-charge after completion (or alternatively, remove the batteries soon after charging finishes).
    I just read that, and tried to find that trickle-charge testing thread, but couldn't find it. Was it really tested like capacity and cycle testing is done here, or does it only contain anecdotal evidence?

  3. #63
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    Default Re: Eneloops: what charger do I need?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kurt_Woloch View Post
    I just read that, and tried to find that trickle-charge testing thread, but couldn't find it. Was it really tested like capacity and cycle testing is done here, or does it only contain anecdotal evidence?
    I don't think it was a well-designed test, but it was a little better than anecdotal. IIRC, it was based on a couple of Eneloops kept on a trickle-charger for a couple of weeks, and then noticing their capacity was way down. I think there was also some venting in one case, but perhaps that was more than trickle-charging?

    Yeah, I'm a bit uneasy about accepting it as fact. But, it does make some sense that LSD batteries would be more susceptible to tricke-charging than non-LSD batteries. That extra charging has to go somewhere, and I don't imagine it does any good.

    A more comprehensive test would be nice. I might try it myself, but sacrificing some of my Eneloops seems like sacrificing some of my children. No, I take that back... it's worse!

  4. #64

    Default Re: Eneloops: what charger do I need?

    I feel you here. I don't like to break things on purpose as well. It's OK to do a "test" where I expose batteries to one "useless" cycle in order to measure their capacity though...

    Well, I've got one data point to add... the Eneloops I put into my cordless phone lasted shorter than the GP batteries that came with it. I think those lasted a bit less than 3 years while the Eneloops only lasted 2 years. I could tell they were constantly trickle-charged because the phone was always very warm in the back where the batteries are. But I still have those degraded cells... they don't seem to have lost their LSD properties, at least not completely, but they now carry a much lower voltage than the cell that was bought at the same time, but wasn't used in the phone.

    Other than that, I have a theory here as well... I think you could try to count the damage you do by trickle-charging as normal cycles. That is, if you trickle-charge a cell for 6 hours at 0.1 C, this is 0.6 times its capacity, so it would count as 60% of a charging cycle and wear out the battery accordingly. I think there is no set value where you can say that below that value it's OK to leave them on trickle-charge, and above that value it's not OK. In my phone's case, the original batteries would have sustained about 24000-25000 hours of trickle charge, but I don't know at what rate. Based on how hot they were, it could well have been about 0.1 C. There could be a value, though, at which the trickle-charge current gets too much for the batteries after a time, so they vent and get destroyed even faster.

    Quote Originally Posted by WalkIntoTheLight View Post
    I don't think it was a well-designed test, but it was a little better than anecdotal. IIRC, it was based on a couple of Eneloops kept on a trickle-charger for a couple of weeks, and then noticing their capacity was way down. I think there was also some venting in one case, but perhaps that was more than trickle-charging?

    Yeah, I'm a bit uneasy about accepting it as fact. But, it does make some sense that LSD batteries would be more susceptible to tricke-charging than non-LSD batteries. That extra charging has to go somewhere, and I don't imagine it does any good.

    A more comprehensive test would be nice. I might try it myself, but sacrificing some of my Eneloops seems like sacrificing some of my children. No, I take that back... it's worse!

  5. #65

    Default Re: Eneloops: what charger do I need?

    I wonder if Eneloop Lites can withstand that kind of abuse better... Sanyo/Panasonic claims they are more suitable for DECT phones than regular eneloops are

  6. #66
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    Default Re: Eneloops: what charger do I need?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kouryu View Post
    I wonder if Eneloop Lites can withstand that kind of abuse better... Sanyo/Panasonic claims they are more suitable for DECT phones than regular eneloops are
    Sounds like it. They have way more cycles, so perhaps that is an indication of how much abuse they can take?

  7. #67

    Default Re: Eneloops: what charger do I need?

    Perhaps you can give it a try? My cordless phones don't use AAAs, so no go for me
    I tried finding out how well this works as opposed to the originally crappy Chinese made cells, but the information has been pretty spotty at best

    This "suitable for DECT" claim has got me curious lol

  8. #68
    Flashaholic marcosg's Avatar
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    Default Re: Eneloops: what charger do I need?

    The BQ-CC21 has two circuits for charging the batteries while the BQ-CC17 only use one based what I read online. Does this make the the BQ-CC21 a better charger and worth buying considering that I already have the CC17, C9000 and BC1000? Thanks

  9. #69

    Default Re: Eneloops: what charger do I need?

    I'm not sure what you mean... I think you meant the BQ-CC21 has dual charging speeds, like the BQ-CC16? Indeed, it does have dual charging speeds... if you insert only cells in slot 1 and slot 4, it will charge at double the speed of what it would be if there were all 4 cells in the charger. The BQ-CC17 cannot do this and basically is the same as the NC-MQN05 (NC-TG1) except for the fact that it now supports any mains voltage, not just 100-120 volts.

    The only thing the BQ-CC21 has going for over the C9000 and BC1000 are portability.... otherwise, there's no advantage... all of the chargers mentioned in this post are individual channels and have smart termination
    Last edited by Kouryu; 07-07-2015 at 08:47 PM.

  10. #70
    Flashaholic marcosg's Avatar
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    Default Re: Eneloops: what charger do I need?

    What I meant was that reading HJK's reviews, he mentions that the CC17 has only one charger circuit (at the end of his review).
    There's also a review for the BQ-CC16 model which seems to be almost like the BQ-CC21 I guess.
    Last edited by marcosg; 07-08-2015 at 04:36 AM.

  11. #71
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    Default Re: Eneloops: what charger do I need?

    Quote Originally Posted by marcosg View Post
    What I meant was that reading HJK's reviews, he says "Compared to the CC16 this one (CC17) only has one charger circuit, the CC16 has two".
    And both chargers are handling the cells individually, the CC17 uses 25% time on each cell, the CC16 uses 50% time on each cell. This also means the charger current in CC17 is 4 time the average current and 2 times times the average current in CC16.
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  12. #72

    Default Re: Eneloops: what charger do I need? (info and discussion thead)

    Hi guys, are there any cheap recommended smart NiMH chargers and/or chargers that can handle lithiums such as the 18650 as well?

    I've just bought a set of 4 AAA Eneloops and tried to charge them with my Thrunite U1 charger. It heated up really quickly and to such a temperature that the charger automatically cut off.

    So I went to read the specs and found out that it outputs 1A, which from the threads here I gather is quite a bit too much current for my 750mAh Eneloop. So I'm looking for a charger for my Eneloops.

    I've only bought the AAAs to use in my active noise cancelling headphones (didn't want to have to keep buying alkalines), and its a tad ridiculous to have to spend so much more to get a charger in addition. Also I would like to avoid having to keep too many chargers so if it has to be expensive it should handle lithiums as well as NiMH/NiCads. Smaller would be better as well since I don't need to charge 4 batteries simultaneously.

    Any recommendations?

  13. #73

    Default Re: Eneloops: what charger do I need? (info and discussion thead)

    How do these chargers handle batteries at different discharge states? For example, if I put in 3 batteries at full charge and 1 empty, would it treat it as if I only had 1 battery in there?

    Sorry for the newbie question.

  14. #74
    Flashaholic marcosg's Avatar
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    Default Re: Eneloops: what charger do I need?

    Quote Originally Posted by HKJ View Post
    And both chargers are handling the cells individually, the CC17 uses 25% time on each cell, the CC16 uses 50% time on each cell. This also means the charger current in CC17 is 4 time the average current and 2 times times the average current in CC16.
    Thanks HJK, Does this mean that the CC16 does a better job charging the regular eneloops and eneloops pro than the CC117? I'm not concerned about the time, since the CC16 charges faster but the one that will keep my cells in good shape in the long run.
    Reading your reviews for both chargers, it seems that you liked the CC16 better over the CC17, am I correct?
    Last edited by marcosg; 07-08-2015 at 06:51 AM.

  15. #75
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    Default Re: Eneloops: what charger do I need?

    Quote Originally Posted by marcosg View Post
    Thanks HJK, Does this mean that the CC16 does a better job charging the regular eneloops and eneloops pro than the CC117? I'm not concerned about the time, since the CC16 charges faster but the one that will keep my cells in good shape in the long run.
    Reading your reviews for both chargers, it seems that you liked the CC16 better over the CC17, am I correct?
    Yes, I like the faster speed of the CC16.
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  16. #76

    Default Re: Eneloops: what charger do I need?

    Quote Originally Posted by marcosg View Post
    Thanks HJK, Does this mean that the CC16 does a better job charging the regular eneloops and eneloops pro than the CC117? I'm not concerned about the time, since the CC16 charges faster but the one that will keep my cells in good shape in the long run.
    Reading your reviews for both chargers, it seems that you liked the CC16 better over the CC17, am I correct?
    The faster speed will not kill them... the BQ-CC16 charging rate is no where near 1C for any tier level of Eneloop... as a matter of fact, Sanyo/FDK recommends a 0.5-1C charge rate anyway
    You can't go wrong with the BQ-CC21 either... it basically is the same speed, except it has a different case design, and arguably looks better... it is a little bigger though

    Really, the thing that makes the BQ-CC21 more attractive over the BQ-CC16 for people in USA or Canada is the fact that it's cheaper and easier to get the BQ-CC21 (imported of course)
    Last edited by Kouryu; 07-09-2015 at 06:12 PM.

  17. #77
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    Default Re: Eneloops: what charger do I need?

    This is getting a bit confusing. I have several of the Panasonic BQ-CC17 chargers. I am not concerned with charge speed or how pretty the charger looks. Given that, are the other Panasonic chargers better for other reasons?

  18. #78

    Default Re: Eneloops: what charger do I need?

    The BQ-CC17 is a good cheap charger, just slow
    If you're happy with the slow speed, then it's all good... no worries!

  19. #79
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    Default Re: Eneloops: what charger do I need?

    Does the old Duracell CEF23DX4N Mobile Charger trickle charge? I bought a few of those several years ago after reading recommendations for them here on CPF.

  20. #80
    Flashaholic marcosg's Avatar
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    Default Re: Eneloops: what charger do I need?

    Hi rumack, I have one of those and I like very much. Would love to know if any member has comments about this charger as well.

  21. #81
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    Default Re: Eneloops: what charger do I need?

    As a newbie to Eneloops, I am trying to learn what I can about their care and charging. This thread is a great resource.

    Initially, I thought I would use my Nitecore Digicharger D4 to charge Eneloops. It has the capability. After watching the AskMrWizard YouTube videos on NiMH batteries, however, I changed my mind. Those convinced me that I wanted a charger/analyzer.

    Brief aside:
    The AskMrWizard vids are a great primer on NiMH. See my mini-review and links here. Part 4 presents a worthwhile system for labeling and tracking batteries as they age. I think even experienced flashaholics might enjoy that part.

    At that point in my research, I learned about the Maha MH-C9000 WizardOne Charger-Analyzer. It's a design that is a little bit older than some others, but it is still well-regarded. The testimonials in this thread bear witness to that. But then, I began seeing references to the way it terminates charging of NiMH batteries. According to the review by HKJ (and also other sources), the C9000 indicates that charging is complete before it actually is. In order to get a full charge, you have to leave your batteries in the charger for another hour or two while they trickle charge to full capacity. Very odd. If you leave them on too long, then I suppose you are subject to the same problems given by cheap chargers that continue trickle charging after an Eneloop has been fully charged. Some experts, therefore, recommend that the C9000 not be used for regular charging. Instead, it should be used for discharge, break-in, cycling, and capacity testing. These are functions where it shines.

    Next, I checked out the La Crosse analyzers. One of them is featured in the AskMrWizard videos. They seem fine, but when I saw the HKJ review of the much lower-priced Opus BT-C700 NiMH Charger, my focus shifted to Opus.

    HKJ gives the C700 a generally positive review. It cannot, however, charge Li-ion. At first, I thought that might be a problem, but later changed my mind. In reading HKJ's reviews of the Opus models that can charge both NiMH and Li-ion, I began to sense that—for purposes of charging NiMH—the NiMH-dedicated hardware and algorithms used in the C700 are just as good, and perhaps a bit better, than those that Opus uses in its hybrid models. As I write today, I cannot remember the details, but I definitely sensed a small difference. Having separate bays for AA and AAA batteries, as the C700 does, also makes things easier.

    Anyway, this newbie ordered the Opus BT-C700.

    I hope that by sharing my experience, I can help others. I welcome any corrections and advice that readers can offer. I am planning to use the Opus as my primary charger for all my Eneloops.
    Last edited by KeepingItLight; 07-13-2015 at 11:51 PM.
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  22. #82
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    Default Re: Eneloops: what charger do I need?

    The C9000's trickle charge is low enough that won't harm Eneloops so you could leave them in for a few hours or a few days after charging is complete. I prefer using the C9000 over the BQ-CC17 (Panasonic Eneloop charger) and the BC1000. You can default at 1A without any problems and leave the cells in overnight without worrying about any overcharge. I wouldn't leave them on for weeks on end but a day or two won't hurt the cells.
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  23. #83

    Default Re: Eneloops: what charger do I need?

    some of the official Eneloop chargers also do a "maintenance charge" for a couple of hours after charging has finished... if Panasonic/Sanyo designed this into their chargers, I guess there's not too much harm with that

  24. #84
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    Default Re: Eneloops: what charger do I need?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kouryu View Post
    some of the official Eneloop chargers also do a "maintenance charge" for a couple of hours after charging has finished... if Panasonic/Sanyo designed this into their chargers, I guess there's not too much harm with that
    Here is what HKJ wrote about the Maha C9000: "The charger uses about 2 hours to charge the battery, then it terminates on voltage and uses another two hours to top the battery, before it switches to a trickle charge. The charger will report done after the first two hours."

    If you take your batteries out when the C9000 reports "done," they will not be fully charged. To get a full charge, you have to wait another couple of hours. Furthermore, the C9000 does not give a signal telling you when charging is actually finished. It is good to hear from you and MidnightDistortions that batteries will not be damaged if they are left charging too long, but it would be convenient to have a signal when they reach full charge.

    I don't know how the Panasonic/Sanyo designs work. Do they also prematurely signal that charging is complete?
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  25. #85
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    Default Re: Eneloops: what charger do I need?

    It actually would be nice if the C9000 provided how much mAh was accumulated during top off/trickle charged. IIRC the trickle charge is something like 10mA. You want to avoid letting the BC1000 trickle charge especially if you choose a higher current rate, the 200mA charge rate can be too low for AA cells though.
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  26. #86

    Default Re: Eneloops: what charger do I need?

    Quote Originally Posted by KeepingItLight View Post
    Here is what HKJ wrote about the Maha C9000: "The charger uses about 2 hours to charge the battery, then it terminates on voltage and uses another two hours to top the battery, before it switches to a trickle charge. The charger will report done after the first two hours."

    If you take your batteries out when the C9000 reports "done," they will not be fully charged. To get a full charge, you have to wait another couple of hours. Furthermore, the C9000 does not give a signal telling you when charging is actually finished. It is good to hear from you and MidnightDistortions that batteries will not be damaged if they are left charging too long, but it would be convenient to have a signal when they reach full charge.

    I don't know how the Panasonic/Sanyo designs work. Do they also prematurely signal that charging is complete?
    If you look through some of HKJ's reviews, you'll see the official Eneloop chargers typically terminate with -dV or voltage peak, then the charge drops off into a maintenance charge afterwards... these are with the better chargers, not the cheap timer based chargers that charges in pairs

  27. #87

    Default Re: Eneloops: what charger do I need? (info and discussion thead)

    Total noob....is there a decent fast charger that comes in a package deal with eneloop pros?

  28. #88

    Default Re: Eneloops: what charger do I need? (info and discussion thead)

    None in US/Canada, but can be imported easily via Amazon or Ebay...
    BQ-CC16 with 4 eneloop pros... from europe or asia
    BQ-CC21 with 4 eneloop pros... from japan

    any other "package deal" is unofficial, but may come with something substantially better, such as the C9000 charger

  29. #89
    Flashaholic* KeepingItLight's Avatar
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    Default Re: Eneloops: what charger do I need?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kouryu View Post
    If you look through some of HKJ's reviews, you'll see the official Eneloop chargers typically terminate with -dV or voltage peak, then the charge drops off into a maintenance charge afterwards... these are with the better chargers, not the cheap timer based chargers that charges in pairs
    The Maha C9000 does that also. HKJ reports that NiMH charging takes 4 hours or so. When charging is complete, the C9000 slips into a gentle maintenance charging mode. The maintenance charge begins at about the 4-hour mark, when charging is complete.

    But that is not what I have been commenting on.

    My concern is that the C9000 reports "done" at about the 2-hour mark, when charging still has another 2 hours to go. If you take your batteries off the charger at the 2-hour mark—when the charger says they are done—and then measure them with a volt meter, you will see that they are not fully charged.

    HKJ describes this in his review. I quoted the relevant section in my message above. Here is a YouTube review that reports the same:





    The reviewer's comments on the C9000's incomplete charging occur at the 17:48 mark. This link will take you directly to them. Evidently, the reviewer never figured out that "done" does not mean "done," and that he is supposed to leave his batteries charging for another 2 hours or so.

    HKJ recently responded to a question asking which chargers he recommends for Eneloop Pro batteries. For charging, he likes the official Eneloop chargers that have been discussed in this thread. In particular, he mentioned the Panasonic CC16 & CC17 chargers.

    HKJ also gave a few recommendations for charger/analyzers. It is telling that the Maha C9000 was not among the ones he recommended. The Opus BT-C700 that I just ordered was.

    Note that all we are talking about is charging. The other functions of the Maha C9000—break-in, discharge, cycling, and capacity testing—are very good.
    Last edited by KeepingItLight; 07-16-2015 at 12:55 AM.
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  30. #90
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    Default Re: Eneloops: what charger do I need? (info and discussion thead)

    Quote Originally Posted by recDNA View Post
    Total noob....is there a decent fast charger that comes in a package deal with eneloop pros?
    There is a place for a simple chargers, and the Panasonic models that are discussed in this thread—and which are also recommended by HKJ—are great for that purpose. HKJ's recommendations came in response to a direct question about Eneloop Pro batteries. He likes the Panasonic CC16 & CC17 chargers.

    As your NiMH batteries age, however, you will need an analyzer. If they begin to develop increased internal resistance, for instance, the cycle function of an analyzer will allow you to completely charge and discharge your batteries a few times in a row. That will often "reset" them, clearing away much of the internal resistance. Capacity testing is another useful function. It will allow you to determine when a battery's life is effectively over. Another application is for flashlights that use more than one battery. Capacity testing allows you to measure—and match—the capacities of batteries that are used together. These are only a few of the features that you get with an analyzer.

    I learned a lot about NiMH care and charging basics by watching the AskMrWizard videos on YouTube. I give a mini-review and YouTube links here.
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