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Thread: Test/Review of Charger Xtar VC4

  1. #121
    Flashaholic* CelticCross74's Avatar
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    Default Re: Test/Review of Charger Xtar VC4

    had my VC4 for months now and freaking love it. What I did not love about it was the Xtar specific wal wart for it. I just dont have the patience to watch a charge rate sink to .2 etc. So I did some research on wal warts and out of frustration found my iPhone 6 FireWire upgrade wall wart (made by Verizon its a big black cube with a red ring around the front that lights up when charging) and BAM! This wal wart has all 4 slots nailed to .5a when charging 4x18650. Also nails slots 1 and 4 to 1 amp no matter what I have in the slots. The amp meter does NOT move whatsoever. The VC4 now charges my cells up to 3 times faster its like I gave it race gas. No more slow drops to .2 amps for a half an hour BS etc. the iPhone 6 wal wart powers my VC4 to the wall I love it. As for "oh no that is to hard on the cells" I have yet to have a single issue with any cell I have charged on my turbo charged VC4. Sometimes NiMHs will get kind of warm but that is it. VC4 with iPhone 6 upgrade wal wart devours any charger Ive had before. Yes I understand after reading this thread that the VC4 often reads off what it is actually charging but with my hot wal wart powering it the amp meter is nailed as far as it will go. If it is reading off at all it is not by much at all.

  2. #122
    Flashaholic* ChrisGarrett's Avatar
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    Default Re: Test/Review of Charger Xtar VC4

    Quote Originally Posted by Dexx View Post
    What are the pros/cons of the VC4 compared with the Nightcore I4?
    The former is 5v USB at 2.1A and can be run off of moderately powerful solar panels, or a quality 2.4A wall wart. The latter has a 12v input and can be run off of 12v solar panels, AC wall wart, or a 12v car cigarette adapter.

    Both do NiMH and li-ion 3.7v cells. The Xtar 'can' do 500mA for 4 slots and 1A for two slots and the NiteCore i4 will do 4x375mA and 2x750mA.

    The Xtar has a nice display showing mAh pumped in, charging rate and cell/battery voltages. The NC has a segmented bar display that progresses as the slots fill up.

    I have both and prefer the VC4, but both chargers are apparently safe to use.

    Chris
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  3. #123
    Flashaholic* TinderBox (UK)'s Avatar
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    Default Re: Test/Review of Charger Xtar VC4

    I have been looking for a descent usb charger, I had my eye on the xtar vc4 but the only 2 slots at 1amp upsets me.

    It would be nice if you could get 4x1amp if you plug in an 12volt psu as it has an barrel power connector anyway, and only 2x1amp when on 5volt usb.

    John.
    "Build a man a fire, and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life." - Terry Pratchett.

  4. #124
    Flashaholic* ChrisGarrett's Avatar
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    Default Re: Test/Review of Charger Xtar VC4

    Quote Originally Posted by TinderBox (UK) View Post
    I have been looking for a descent usb charger, I had my eye on the xtar vc4 but the only 2 slots at 1amp upsets me.

    It would be nice if you could get 4x1amp if you plug in an 12volt psu as it has an barrel power connector anyway, and only 2x1amp when on 5volt usb.John.
    Yeah, there are always trade-offs to this stuff and I really now only have it for SHTF scenarios since I got my Opus BT-3400 last month.

    Like I said before, if you really, really need 1A for four slots, just get a second set of batteries and take your time.

    It's there for my 14w Sunkingdom solar panel and so it serves a purpose, albeit a limited one for me.

    Chris
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  5. #125
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    Default Re: Test/Review of Charger Xtar VC4

    How does this compare to the BC1000 Alpha Power? Is this better or about the same. I'm thinking about buying one.

  6. #126

    Default Re: Test/Review of Charger Xtar VC4

    Does any American dealer sell the vc4 and sell a good 2.1 amp 5 volt wall adapter that really provides the 2.1 amps to the charger? Anybody try the Samsung 2 amp 5.3 volt wall adapter?
    Last edited by recDNA; 04-03-2016 at 12:47 PM.

  7. #127
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    Default Re: Test/Review of Charger Xtar VC4

    Quote Originally Posted by recDNA View Post
    Does any American dealer sell the vc4 and sell a good 2.1 amp 5 volt wall adapter that really provides the 2.1 amps to the charger? Anybody try the Samsung 2 amp 5.3 volt wall adapter?
    https://www.xtardirect.com/

    Check under accessories.

  8. #128

    Default Re: Test/Review of Charger Xtar VC4

    I use these with my VC4 chargers:
    http://www.ebay.com/itm/Meanwell-RS-...0AAOSwj0NUgLmj

    Works like a charm!!
    Bill

  9. #129

    Default Re: Test/Review of Charger Xtar VC4

    Yes they do, (follow sidecross's link). What I found to be the case with the XTAR 2.1A USB car adapter and USB wall adapter is that they output at a slightly higher voltage than is typical of other USB adapters. The Xtar USB adapters push the voltage to the high end of the USB spec or ~5.25V which in turn helps the VC4 maintain the power needed to charge more stably and without a problem. The higher initial voltage out of the adapter helps account for the voltage drop across the wire so more power gets from the USB adapter to the USB device or in this case the VC4 charger.

    I've tested the VC4 against a good number of different USB ports and power sources and the higher voltage of the XTAR USB chargers makes all the difference in my 2x cells getting a 1A charge or 4x cells getting a consistent 500mA charge. Ive seen if the USB voltage on the wire drops below 5v then the charging current on the VC4 drops too.
    Last edited by filibuster; 04-16-2016 at 11:31 PM.
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  10. #130

    Default Re: Test/Review of Charger Xtar VC4

    Quote Originally Posted by sidecross View Post
    https://www.xtardirect.com/

    Check under accessories.
    Then wait for delivery from China or are they in USA?

  11. #131
    Flashaholic* RI Chevy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Test/Review of Charger Xtar VC4

    I think XTAR has a distribution facility in Florida.

  12. #132

    Default Re: Test/Review of Charger Xtar VC4

    Quote Originally Posted by RI Chevy View Post
    I think XTAR has a distribution facility in Florida.
    Is Xtardirect their outfit as well? I believe they are in California.
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  13. #133
    Flashaholic* RI Chevy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Test/Review of Charger Xtar VC4

    Not sure.

  14. #134
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    Default Re: Test/Review of Charger Xtar VC4

    Quote Originally Posted by recDNA View Post
    Then wait for delivery from China or are they in USA?
    The link is xtar direct usa

  15. #135
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    Default Re: Test/Review of Charger Xtar VC4

    Quote Originally Posted by ko4nrbs View Post
    I use these with my VC4 chargers:
    http://www.ebay.com/itm/Meanwell-RS-...0AAOSwj0NUgLmj

    Works like a charm!!
    Bill
    Does it come with an AC cord?

    Are those USB ports on the side?

  16. #136
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    Default Re: Test/Review of Charger Xtar VC4

    Quote Originally Posted by recDNA View Post
    Does any American dealer sell the vc4 and sell a good 2.1 amp 5 volt wall adapter that really provides the 2.1 amps to the charger? Anybody try the Samsung 2 amp 5.3 volt wall adapter?
    Although you cannot get it anywhere along with a VC4, you can always get a genuine Apple iPad wall wart. These can kick out a real 2.5A.

  17. #137

    Default Re: Test/Review of Charger Xtar VC4

    Quote Originally Posted by StorminMatt View Post
    Although you cannot get it anywhere along with a VC4, you can always get a genuine Apple iPad wall wart. These can kick out a real 2.5A.
    My wife has an ipad mini and an old original ipad. Do either of them have the adapter you speak of?

  18. #138
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    Default Re: Test/Review of Charger Xtar VC4

    Quote Originally Posted by recDNA View Post
    My wife has an ipad mini and an old original ipad. Do either of them have the adapter you speak of?
    Not sure. At some point, Apple went from a 2.1A charger to a 2.5A charger. Not sure when they made the change. It WILL be printed on the charger, though.

  19. #139

    Default Re: Test/Review of Charger Xtar VC4

    Any idea why when I charge two 32650’s in the outside slots it drops to 0.6A charging?
    The power adapter is an Apple 2.1A.

  20. #140
    Unenlightened sdmf74's Avatar
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    Default Re: Test/Review of Charger Xtar VC4

    @ HKJ ~ Is this Xtar VC4 the best option in a 4 bay charger w/ mah display? Or is there a better unit out now?
    I have a Nitecore D4 but want something to display mah. Charging mainly Eneloop AA&AAA and 18650 L-ion.

    (For the VC4 I have an Orico DCP-5U 5 port super charger with 5v 7.2A)

  21. #141
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    Default Re: Test/Review of Charger Xtar VC4

    Quote Originally Posted by sdmf74 View Post
    @ HKJ ~ Is this Xtar VC4 the best option in a 4 bay charger w/ mah display? Or is there a better unit out now?
    I have a Nitecore D4 but want something to display mah. Charging mainly Eneloop AA&AAA and 18650 L-ion.

    (For the VC4 I have an Orico DCP-5U 5 port super charger with 5v 7.2A)
    It is a good option, but may not always charger at full speed, due to problems with the usb power.

    For real analyzers the SkyRC MC3000 is the best, Opus BT-C3100 is also good.

    Another brands with mAh is Skillhunt M4D, it looks good, but is fairly new to the market.
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  22. #142
    Unenlightened sdmf74's Avatar
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    Default Re: Test/Review of Charger Xtar VC4

    Im no expert on chargers but it appears as if some chargers like the skillhunt & many others only display mah that has been charged to the battery
    and others such as the skyRC & opus bt-c3400 & xtar vc4 can display the current total mah of the battery, is this correct?

    One reason Im interested in checking the mah of my 18650 batts is to compare with reviews and possibly determine if they are counterfiets.

  23. #143
    HKJ's Avatar
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    Default Re: Test/Review of Charger Xtar VC4

    Quote Originally Posted by sdmf74 View Post
    Im no expert on chargers but it appears as if some chargers like the skillhunt & many others only display mah that has been charged to the battery
    and others such as the skyRC & opus bt-c3400 & xtar vc4 can display the current total mah of the battery, is this correct?

    One reason Im interested in checking the mah of my 18650 batts is to compare with reviews and possibly determine if they are counterfiets.
    With LiIon charger and discharge mAh are just about equal. VC4 and other chargers with mAh display it is only the amount of current added that is shown, i.e. you will only get the capacity if you start with an empty battery.
    An analyzing charger is much more convenient because it will discharge the batteries and will usual measure both discharged and charged mAh.
    My website with battery, charger, usb reviews, comparisons & information: https://lygte-info.dk/
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  24. #144

    Default Re: Test/Review of Charger Xtar VC4

    Quote Originally Posted by V54_Fan View Post
    Any idea why when I charge two 32650’s in the outside slots it drops to 0.6A charging?
    The power adapter is an Apple 2.1A.
    Helloooooooooo?????

  25. #145
    Unenlightened sdmf74's Avatar
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    Default Re: Test/Review of Charger Xtar VC4

    Quote Originally Posted by HKJ View Post
    With LiIon charger and discharge mAh are just about equal. VC4 and other chargers with mAh display it is only the amount of current added that is shown, i.e. you will only get the capacity if you start with an empty battery.
    An analyzing charger is much more convenient because it will discharge the batteries and will usual measure both discharged and charged mAh.
    Thanks for the advice! after some research and learning curve I have decided on an Opus BT-C3400 V3.1 (selling my D4)

  26. #146
    Flashaholic* TinderBox (UK)'s Avatar
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    Default Re: Test/Review of Charger Xtar VC4

    sdmf74 you do realise that firmware v3.1 discharges Li-ion to 3.1v when v2.2 discharges to 2.8v

    John

    Quote Originally Posted by sdmf74 View Post
    Thanks for the advice! after some research and learning curve I have decided on an Opus BT-C3400 V3.1 (selling my D4)
    "Build a man a fire, and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life." - Terry Pratchett.

  27. #147
    Unenlightened sdmf74's Avatar
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    Default Re: Test/Review of Charger Xtar VC4

    Quote Originally Posted by TinderBox (UK) View Post
    sdmf74 you do realise that firmware v3.1 discharges Li-ion to 3.1v when v2.2 discharges to 2.8v

    John
    No, will that give me innacurrate readings of my batteries total mah when doing a discharge/charge test???

    Thats one of the reasons for getting this charger is to test total mah of my batteries
    I always buy high quality cells (eneloop for AA/AAA and Samsung 25r, LGHG2 etc. for 18650's)
    Unless of course I get duped and sold counterfeits which Im hoping this charger can help weed out.

    I asked Robert at DC workshop what the difference between the 2 chargers was and he said this...

    "For V3.1 I changed the discharge algorithm for Li-ion cells. Improves performance with low quality cells so as not to trip the internal protect on low quality cells."

    Ironically I have the "soft cell cutoff" set at 3.09v in my Evolv Escribe software which is what is used to setup my mods for vaping (only for 18650's & a maxamps 1850mah 3s lipo)

  28. #148
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    Default Re: Test/Review of Charger Xtar VC4

    Quote Originally Posted by sdmf74 View Post
    No, will that give me innacurrate readings of my batteries total mah when doing a discharge/charge test???
    You can guesstimate the difference by looking at these discharge curves. They imply that the typical capacity between 3.1V and 2.8V is about 1-3% at 1A discharge, and about double that at 3A. These numbers will vary a bit depending on chemistry, IR, etc, but are probably reasonable ballpark estimates. You also need to factor in the effect that the charger measures voltage in-between current pulses, which will skew the numbers a bit. You'll need to runs some tests to get accurate numbers.
    Last edited by Gauss163; 05-30-2016 at 10:55 AM.

  29. #149

    Default Re: Test/Review of Charger Xtar VC4

    Quote Originally Posted by HKJ View Post
    It is a good option, but may not always charger at full speed, due to problems with the usb power.
    Is it however, one of the most efficient chargers you've tested using the least amount of power to charge two or four cells?
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  30. #150
    Unenlightened sdmf74's Avatar
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    Default Re: Test/Review of Charger Xtar VC4

    Quote Originally Posted by TinderBox (UK) View Post
    sdmf74 you do realise that firmware v3.1 discharges Li-ion to 3.1v when v2.2 discharges to 2.8v

    John
    John you said this as if its a bad thing, unless I took it the wrong way. What are the disadvantages if any to discharging to 3.1 instead of 2,8v?

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