What charger do you use for 18650, 21700, plus other batteries?

flashfan

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My Nitecore intellicharger died. It's only a few years old and gets very light use, so I'm not pleased.

What chargers do you use/like? Ideally, I'm looking for a charger with at least four independent slots for 18650 and 21700 batteries.

Nitecore offers more alternatives, and it looks like Fenix has only one 4-slot charger. What if any, other chargers/brands do you have experience with, and would recommend?

Thanks for any input.
 

treek13

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Check out CPF member HKJ’s Index of reviewed round cell chargers. It’s full of helpful information & reviews. You can sort on any of the columns to focus on what’s most important to you.

I am personally fond of Xtar chargers. I’m still using a VP2 for most of my charging but it’s obviously only 2 slots & won’t fit protected 21700. Right now I’m leaning towards getting a VC4SL for my next charger.
 

flashfan

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treek13, thanks so much for that information. I didn't know there was such a comprehensive review of battery chargers. I also didn't realize there were so many different chargers...it simply boggles the mind, and is much too advanced and technical for me, but it is a start.

In a brief look, Gyrfalcon and Xtar look like the best bets. Thanks again!
 

ampdude

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For a modestly priced charger I've been pretty impressed with my Xtar VC4. I think it was only about $18. My only grip is that it doesn't charge batteries all the way to 4.2V. I sometimes top them off in one of my old AW chargers. I also have an old Pila IBC that doesn't always charge to 4.2V either.
 

Rossymeister

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Ive had 2 xtar chargers break over the years. First vp2 started smoking one day when i was charging a couple of batteries. My vp4 last night broke s spring on one of the battery slots. I was in the living room watching tv and i heard a loud pop come from the office. Now i can hear something rattling around in there when i shake it. Not sure how i feel about xtar at this point…
 

brachypelma44

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I've been happy enough with my Fenix ARE-A4 that I recently bought a second one. I use them for 14500, 18650, and 21700.
 

ampdude

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Ive had 2 xtar chargers break over the years. First vp2 started smoking one day when i was charging a couple of batteries. My vp4 last night broke s spring on one of the battery slots. I was in the living room watching tv and i heard a loud pop come from the office. Now i can hear something rattling around in there when i shake it. Not sure how i feel about xtar at this point…

I can definitely see that. They are cheap chargers, but IME seem to work decent. I wouldn't rely on them for mission critical stuff, and the battery insertion is not that great. I had a charger break a spring before as well. Not an Xtar, but one I had years ago. I can definitely see this one possibly breaking a spring sometime when I insert an 18650 or something that length.
 

flashfan

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Thanks for the replies. Was about the pull the trigger on an Xtar, and then I see the post about breakage. Sigh!

Maybe I missed it, but didn't see the Fenix ARE-A4 charger on HKJ's list. Probably new? In any event, when in doubt, buy both...so will likely pick up the Fenix and an Xtar as back-up. The Fenix should work out well, since I'm also looking at the LR35R light.

BTW, do I recall correctly that slow chargers are better in the long run, for the life of the batteries? Thanks again!
 

mccririck

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Check out CPF member HKJ’s Index of reviewed round cell chargers. It’s full of helpful information & reviews. You can sort on any of the columns to focus on what’s most important to you.

I am personally fond of Xtar chargers. I’m still using a VP2 for most of my charging but it’s obviously only 2 slots & won’t fit protected 21700. Right now I’m leaning towards getting a VC4SL for my next charger.
Why is the latest review from 2020? Has he stopped reviewing chargers?
 

mccririck

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Thanks for the replies. Was about the pull the trigger on an Xtar, and then I see the post about breakage. Sigh!

Maybe I missed it, but didn't see the Fenix ARE-A4 charger on HKJ's list. Probably new? In any event, when in doubt, buy both...so will likely pick up the Fenix and an Xtar as back-up. The Fenix should work out well, since I'm also looking at the LR35R light.

BTW, do I recall correctly that slow chargers are better in the long run, for the life of the batteries? Thanks again!
I've had a Xtar SP2 for years and it's still working perfectly. I think it's about 10 years old now.
 

desert.snake

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