Just the right charger

trekker

Newly Enlightened
Joined
Oct 29, 2008
Messages
20
Hi everyone, I'm looking for an AA charger to meet with my growing family demands for AA and AAA batteries.

These battery will be used primarily for high drain devices such as a new flashlight (on order soon!) and for digital cameras. In the past I have acquired two different AA chargers from Wal-Mart, one Energizer, one Duracell and one Sony charger that came with the camera (only holds two batteries).

In addition, I have a number of rechargeable batteries of the Energizer and Duracell variety. I can never seem to keep them separate and have no way of determining which batteries will still hold a charge and which ones should be thrown away. The obvious result is that I am constantly installing good batteries along with bad batteries and...well I'm sure everyone knows the outcome.

Not to mention, that in many cases my batteries may lay around for months without being used which I am sure is not good for them either.

Therefore, I'm looking to obtain a good quality charger and batteries. I would like a charger that meets the following criteria.


  • Will test the batteries to show me which cells are still good and which ones are not
  • Will refresh the batteries to make them last longer
  • Will reduce the effects of "memory"
  • Will revitalize old batteries bringing new life to old
  • Will charge the maximum number of batteries at once as I often carry 6-10 for a day of photography
These are the chargers that I have read about so far,

  • Maha MH -C800S - love the fact that it will charge 8 at once, but not sure about testing and refresh cycles
  • Maha MH-C9000 - sounds like it will do everything I need plus some, just wish it would charge more than 4 at a time
  • LaCrosse BC900 - sounds a lot like the MH-C9000, but I am concerned about reports I have heard about overheating and catching on fire
Any suggestions???
 
Last edited:

Mr Happy

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Nov 21, 2007
Messages
5,390
Location
Southern California
First and foremost, you really should get on top of organizing your batteries so you don't mix up fresh ones with old ones.

After that, I think you may be better off concentrating on the batteries rather than the charger.

If you use good quality batteries with an ordinary but well designed charger and a battery tester, most of your problems should go away.

What do I mean by "good quality batteries"? I mean the recommendation you will get from most everyone here, which is Eneloops. They are good because when you charge them they will stay charged until you need them, because when used in cameras they will run for a long time on a single charge, and because they will last through many, many charges without failing or losing their capacity.

For instance, for a day of photography you should manage quite well on one set of good batteries. A fully charged set in a camera should manage 300 to 500 photos. If you have another set in a flash, same story. The nice thing about Eneloops is you don't have to charge them up the night before. You can keep a stock of charged batteries on the shelf ready to go for weeks before you need them. That takes some of the limitation out of charging 4 at a time.

Now you can of course splash out and buy one of the Maha chargers, and they are nice chargers indeed. But maybe you will be spending all that money in an attempt to revitalize bad batteries. I think you might instead spend the money on good batteries and you will be much happier.

If you can tell us the model numbers of the Energizer and Duracell chargers you have, we can tell you if they are good enough to look after batteries or if you should get a better one.
 

SilverFox

Flashaholic
Joined
Jan 19, 2003
Messages
12,449
Location
Bellingham WA
Hello Trekker,

The charger that best meets your criteria is the C9000. To charge more than 4 cells, get two of them... :)

You might also consider adding either the Energizer or the Duracell 15 minute charger. These chargers will reduce the cycle life of your cells, but when you are in a hurry, they are very nice to have.

Tom
 

trekker

Newly Enlightened
Joined
Oct 29, 2008
Messages
20
First and foremost, you really should get on top of organizing your batteries so you don't mix up fresh ones with old ones.

After that, I think you may be better off concentrating on the batteries rather than the charger.

If you use good quality batteries with an ordinary but well designed charger and a battery tester, most of your problems should go away.

What do I mean by "good quality batteries"? I mean the recommendation you will get from most everyone here, which is Eneloops. They are good because when you charge them they will stay charged until you need them, because when used in cameras they will run for a long time on a single charge, and because they will last through many, many charges without failing or losing their capacity.

For instance, for a day of photography you should manage quite well on one set of good batteries. A fully charged set in a camera should manage 300 to 500 photos. If you have another set in a flash, same story. The nice thing about Eneloops is you don't have to charge them up the night before. You can keep a stock of charged batteries on the shelf ready to go for weeks before you need them. That takes some of the limitation out of charging 4 at a time.

Now you can of course splash out and buy one of the Maha chargers, and they are nice chargers indeed. But maybe you will be spending all that money in an attempt to revitalize bad batteries. I think you might instead spend the money on good batteries and you will be much happier.

If you can tell us the model numbers of the Energizer and Duracell chargers you have, we can tell you if they are good enough to look after batteries or if you should get a better one.

Thanks, you had already convinced me on the Eneloops in another thread. I was looking for a good charger to go with them. Maybe all I really need is a good tester. Anyway, i have listed two of the chargers I have below, the third one (the duracell), I can't find at the moment.


  • Energizer CHDC
  • Sony BS-CS2A
  • I looked up the Duracell online and from memory it looks like the CEF14NC
Please let me know what you think. Thanks!
 
Last edited:

Mr Happy

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Nov 21, 2007
Messages
5,390
Location
Southern California
Thanks, you had already convinced me on the Eneloops in another thread. I was looking for a good charger to go with them. Maybe all I really need is a good tester. Anyway, i have listed two of the chargers I have below, the third one (the duracell), I can't find at the moment.


  • Energizer CHDC
  • Sony BS-CS2A
  • I looked up the Duracell online and from memory it looks like the CEF14NC
Please let me know what you think. Thanks!
Sorry for not remembering, I can't always keep track of every thread I have responded to.

The Energizer CHDC says this in the instructions: "Simply remove the batteries before the (estimated) charge cycle completes based on the following charge times." How likely is it that someone will remember to do that? That charger is bad. Really bad.

I think the Duracell charger is a little better than the Energizer, but for sure you will be better off with one of the Maha chargers, or at least a charger with individual charge control on each cell (the Duracell charger you mentioned charges in pairs).
 

trekker

Newly Enlightened
Joined
Oct 29, 2008
Messages
20
Sorry for not remembering, I can't always keep track of every thread I have responded to.

The Energizer CHDC says this in the instructions: "Simply remove the batteries before the (estimated) charge cycle completes based on the following charge times." How likely is it that someone will remember to do that? That charger is bad. Really bad.

I think the Duracell charger is a little better than the Energizer, but for sure you will be better off with one of the Maha chargers, or at least a charger with individual charge control on each cell (the Duracell charger you mentioned charges in pairs).

Thanks, I am really looking for a charger that will help me to sort my batteries based upon the amount of charge they will hold. It sounds like the C9000 will meet those specifications.

Hello Trekker,

The charger that best meets your criteria is the C9000. To charge more than 4 cells, get two of them... :)

You might also consider adding either the Energizer or the Duracell 15 minute charger. These chargers will reduce the cycle life of your cells, but when you are in a hurry, they are very nice to have.

Tom

Thanks, I was leaning towards C9000, is it difficult to use?
 
Last edited:
Top