Eneloop 1st Generation Vs 4th Generation Cycle Testing

ChrisGarrett

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Feb 2, 2012
Messages
5,727
Location
Miami, Florida
Thanks for sharing.

What are the date codes on both batteries?

I realize that Gen. 4s are probably from the latter half of 2013, but what about the Gen. 1s?

Chris
 

neutralwhite

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Oct 18, 2012
Messages
3,202
Location
London Heathrow
question; if i were to buy some eneloop pro AAA , i see some are BK-4HCC and some are 3HCC. which are better to have?.
i see some on cpfmp 3HCC and ebay 4HCC.
differences are generations but do the same thing?.

thank you.
 

Power Me Up

Enlightened
Joined
Mar 19, 2007
Messages
634
Location
Brisbane, Australia
question; if i were to buy some eneloop pro AAA , i see some are BK-4HCC and some are 3HCC. which are better to have?.
i see some on cpfmp 3HCC and ebay 4HCC.
differences are generations but do the same thing?.

ChibiM has put together a useful table showing the codes for all of the different Eneloops here:
http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/showthread.php?364607-Overview-All-eneloop-batteries-2005-2014

The BK-4HCC are 3rd Generation XX AAA cells - the most recent version. The BK-3HCC are 3rd Generation XX AA cells.
 

Mr Floppy

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Feb 19, 2007
Messages
2,065
Heh, ultrasmartcharger. Wish you guys picked a better name. Good to see the new charger in action
 

Etsu

Enlightened
Joined
Jul 1, 2013
Messages
783
So, if you're comparing an 8-year old gen-1 cell against a 1-year old gen-4, I think the 8 year old Eneloop is holding up extremely well. I wouldn't have though it would hold it's original capacity even on the first few cycles, and certainly not after a couple of hundred cycles!

I would be interesting to see how an 8 year old gen-4 would hold up. Test again in 7 years? ;-)
 

Power Me Up

Enlightened
Joined
Mar 19, 2007
Messages
634
Location
Brisbane, Australia
So, if you're comparing an 8-year old gen-1 cell against a 1-year old gen-4, I think the 8 year old Eneloop is holding up extremely well. I wouldn't have though it would hold it's original capacity even on the first few cycles, and certainly not after a couple of hundred cycles!

The 1st gen cell is actually closer to 7 years old - not quite 7.5 years old now. That said, it's still quite old, so it's done quite well as you say. I'm not all that surprised myself though - all of my other 1st gen cells are doing well still (except for the few that have been abused)

I think it's reasonably clear than any fears of Eneloops becoming useless after sitting unused for 10 years are probably unfounded!

I would be interesting to see how an 8 year old gen-4 would hold up. Test again in 7 years? ;-)

Maybe! It might be more interesting to test a 15 year old 1st Gen cell versus a new 8th gen (or whatever they're up to by then!)

Eneloops are already so good that it's hard to imagine how much better they can get though!
 

Etsu

Enlightened
Joined
Jul 1, 2013
Messages
783
Eneloops are already so good that it's hard to imagine how much better they can get though!

Hopefully, they will continue to improve them. Now that Panasonic bought them out, I hope they don't change the quality standards. There's not a lot of profit to be made if batteries last 10+ years, but I hope they continue to do so.
 

Power Me Up

Enlightened
Joined
Mar 19, 2007
Messages
634
Location
Brisbane, Australia
There's not a lot of profit to be made if batteries last 10+ years, but I hope they continue to do so.

It might seem that way, but I think that it's a huge competitive advantage that means they'll get more market share. I think it's better to have a good reputation for quality and continue to sell Eneloops to a larger and larger percent of the population than to sell rubbish that just puts people off buying more again in the future - at least it did for a lot of people prior to the Eneloop being introduced. Remember the Energizer 2500's!

I suppose it could be argued that if they only lasted 5 years, that would still be good enough for most people to still buy them - I'm guessing (and hoping) that this isn't possible without also making them less robust in normal use and that would deter them from making such a change.

I've also bought far more Eneloops than any other type of rechargeables - because they're suitable for so many more applications than the old NiMH cells that would be flat before they'd been used! (I'm a long way from typical though - I've got over 300 rechargeable NiMH cells floating around!)

Of course, what I think is reasonable hasn't stopped plenty of other companies from moving manufacturing off shore, reducing quality and keeping the price the same - let's hope that Panasonic doesn't follow suit!
 

Mr Floppy

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Feb 19, 2007
Messages
2,065
What's wrong with "UltraSmartCharger"?

I like the name, but I might be a bit biased since I came up with it!

It makes it sound like something you'd see in the aisles of a supermarket or infomercial. Still, it's not unlike an Australian to tell it like he sees it.

edit: great by the way. Wish I was one of the backers and got one of these
 
Last edited:

Viking

Enlightened
Joined
Jul 18, 2010
Messages
541
Location
Denmark
Hi Power Me Up

Thanks for sharing the very interesting test results with us. I really appreciate it.
Only question ; what was the slow discharge rate set to , in the "slow discharge" test?


BTW

I think it would be a mistake to add a fan in the next test. They already have better ventilation in the UltraSmart Charger as it is , than they would have under real conditions ( lying tight side by side in a small enclosed compartment , with no space for the heat to escape ).
Also I would like to see a little more resting time for the cells.
Just my opinion :)


I'm looking very much forward for your further updates in this test , as well as for the next test with generation 2.


Again thank you for sharing the results :thumbsup:
 
Last edited:

Power Me Up

Enlightened
Joined
Mar 19, 2007
Messages
634
Location
Brisbane, Australia
It makes it sound like something you'd see in the aisles of a supermarket or infomercial.

Ah!

Still, it's not unlike an Australian to tell it like he sees it.

I'll take that as a complement! ;-)

edit: great by the way. Wish I was one of the backers and got one of these

Actually, Paul has started selling a limited quantity of the non LCD chargers if you want to get one:
http://www.paulallenengineering.com/store/c1/Featured_Products.html
 

Power Me Up

Enlightened
Joined
Mar 19, 2007
Messages
634
Location
Brisbane, Australia
Hi Power Me Up

Thanks for sharing the very interesting test results with us. I really appreciate it.
Only question ; what was the slow discharge rate set to , in the "slow discharge" test?

It's a little bit lower than the standard 0.2C rate - it's discharging into a 4 ohm load, so about 300 mA on average but reducing a little as the cell discharges.

I'm thinking about building a constant current sink to use for the next test - I'll then have it running at a full 2amps for the fast discharges and 400mA for the slow discharges.

BTW

I think it would be a mistake to add a fan in the next test. They already have better ventilation in the UltraSmart Charger as it is , than they would have under real conditions ( lying tight side by side in a small enclosed compartment , with no space for the heat to escape ).
Also I would like to see a little more resting time for the cells.
Just my opinion :)

You're right that there is more ventilation, but I am charging and discharging at high rates and I'm also not allowing much rest time as you say. I suspect that the higher temperature is what is causing the cells to degrade so quickly, so it will be interesting to see the results of keeping them cool. It wouldn't surprise me if even with forced air cooling, the 2 amp charging and discharging will still have the cells running at a higher temperature than when charging at the normal 1 amp rate.

I'm looking very much forward for your further updates in this test , as well as for the next test with generation 2.


Again thank you for sharing the results :thumbsup:

No problem - thanks for the feedback! :grin2:
 

Mr Floppy

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Feb 19, 2007
Messages
2,065
Actually, Paul has started selling a limited quantity of the non LCD chargers if you want to get one:
http://www.paulallenengineering.com/store/c1/Featured_Products.html

Yep, sure do, funds permitting. Got a few unopened first generation Eneloops too that I can do. Infact, could get quite a large varied sample of the first gens just from just the community. Where did you get your first gens? These ones I have I think I bought from ****ies but bought them from all over the Internet too.
 

Power Me Up

Enlightened
Joined
Mar 19, 2007
Messages
634
Location
Brisbane, Australia
Yep, sure do, funds permitting.

Fair enough. Paul is planning to keep making them, but if you want one that can discharge into an external load, you might want to jump in while they're still available - the next revision will likely lose that capability (but gain other features in its place)

Got a few unopened first generation Eneloops too that I can do. Infact, could get quite a large varied sample of the first gens just from just the community. Where did you get your first gens? These ones I have I think I bought from ****ies but bought them from all over the Internet too.

I've got a total of ten 1st generation AA Eneloops still in unopened packs. One pack of 2 (with AA to D adapters) was bought directly from the Australian distributor at the same time as the one that I was using for this test. The other 8 are in 2 packs of 4 - bought from Thomas Distributing - both of those packs are even older with a manufacturing date of April 2006!
 

Power Me Up

Enlightened
Joined
Mar 19, 2007
Messages
634
Location
Brisbane, Australia
Another update - the 4th generation Eneloop is now up to 500 cycles.

Performance is still dropping off quite quickly and I'd expect it to continue to do so, but I'd estimate that it should still manage another 100 cycles or so.
 

ChrisGarrett

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Feb 2, 2012
Messages
5,727
Location
Miami, Florida
Another update - the 4th generation Eneloop is now up to 500 cycles.

Performance is still dropping off quite quickly and I'd expect it to continue to do so, but I'd estimate that it should still manage another 100 cycles or so.

Thanks for the work. I take it, they don't like the ball-gag that you're throwing their way?

Chris
 
Top