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Old 03-15-2009, 01:17 PM - Thread Starter
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Which are considered the best batteries and chargers? I read some older posts here about Eneloop batteries, are these still considered good?
What batteries are you using?

TIA
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Old 03-15-2009, 02:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by realdeal1115 View Post

Which are considered the best batteries and chargers? I read some older posts here about Eneloop batteries, are these still considered good?
What batteries are you using?

TIA

Eneloops are nice, in that they hold their charges over a longer time when not in use. The 360 controllers aren't very demanding, though, and you should have pretty good luck with just about any kind of NiMH batteries.

I went with rechargeables for just about everything we own a number years ago, and have never looked back. You can't beat the price and convenience of being able to swap out old batteries for a fresh set whenever you want. Yes, you may have to replace them a little more frequently than alkalines, but it's not much of a hassle.

If you're only looking for using them with a 360, I'd go cheap. Get a set of four with a battery charge that has a trickle feature and can be used with only a pair at a time (some cheaper chargers require you to recharge four at a time). You can keep one pair in the trickle charger and always be assured of having a fresh set at the ready.

If your looking for long term options, I'd recommend some higher-rated batteries along with a La Crosse Technology BC-900 AlphaPower Battery Charger. It's not cheap, but it's a high-quality charger, with a bunch of different charging options. It's overkill for the casual charger, but worth it if you seriously want to get into the rechargeable-battery lifestyle. The up-front investment isn't cheap, but they will last for years and years.

The Eneloops are very nice for infrequently-used items, or making sure that you have a set of batteries that are going to be ready to use, if you're not actively charging them.

Scott

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Old 03-15-2009, 02:32 PM
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yes, that's true, and with most devices I'd like to use around my house the low-leakage rechargables are definitely needed. A battery that loses 50% per month by doing nothing isn't realistic for things outside of game controllers.

I did the whole rechargeable switcharoo about 5 years ago, but had to keep alkalines in some things (like remotes and flashlights), but now that the low-leakage batteries are out, I'm 100% rechargeable all the way. The only alkalines I have are those that came with something else.

BTW, the Duracell "pre-charged" are supposedly relabeled Eneloops. I also like the Rayovac "Hybrid" line, but it has been a while since I've seen them.
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Old 03-15-2009, 04:11 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by srw1000 View Post

Eneloops are nice, in that they hold their charges over a longer time when not in use. The 360 controllers aren't very demanding, though, and you should have pretty good luck with just about any kind of NiMH batteries.

I went with rechargeables for just about everything we own a number years ago, and have never looked back. You can't beat the price and convenience of being able to swap out old batteries for a fresh set whenever you want. Yes, you may have to replace them a little more frequently than alkalines, but it's not much of a hassle.

If you're only looking for using them with a 360, I'd go cheap. Get a set of four with a battery charge that has a trickle feature and can be used with only a pair at a time (some cheaper chargers require you to recharge four at a time). You can keep one pair in the trickle charger and always be assured of having a fresh set at the ready.

If your looking for long term options, I'd recommend some higher-rated batteries along with a La Crosse Technology BC-900 AlphaPower Battery Charger. It's not cheap, but it's a high-quality charger, with a bunch of different charging options. It's overkill for the casual charger, but worth it if you seriously want to get into the rechargeable-battery lifestyle. The up-front investment isn't cheap, but they will last for years and years.

The Eneloops are very nice for infrequently-used items, or making sure that you have a set of batteries that are going to be ready to use, if you're not actively charging them.

Scott

Thanks for your informative post. I think I may consider going totally rechargeable for everything, 360, Wii, Home Theater remotes, etc. The La Crosse charger may be for me.

What brand battery would you recommend? Will they hold a charge when not being used?
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Old 03-15-2009, 05:21 PM
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Eneloop is the answer, everything else is crap.

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Old 03-15-2009, 06:04 PM
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Any of the pre-charged or hybrid batteries will do the job for you. I converted all my AA and AAA to these a few months ago and have already made my money back. My kid can go through these things like crazy.
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Old 03-15-2009, 06:40 PM
 
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Any rechargeable Ni-MH battery that is labeled as "pre-charged" or "ready to use" operates within 5-10% of any other pre-charged Ni-MH battery. Grab whichever one is cheapest and run with it. At this point, anyone buying the older style of Ni-MH battery that is not of the pre-charged variety is a sucker. Anyone recommending that that is the type of battery that you should be purchasing is either lying to you, or rather ill-informed.
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Old 03-15-2009, 06:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tgable View Post

Eneloop is the answer, everything else is crap.

Eneloop would be the first choice, made by Sanyo. Kind of hard to find, though.

The Duracell "Pre-charged" are the same thing and available at Wal-Mart, though, for like $13 for 4 or like $19 for 8. All of the other types (Energizer, Rayovac non-Hybrid) technically have more capacity, but lose 50% per month just sitting there (meaning after 3 months, ~12.5% is remaining).
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Old 03-15-2009, 07:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by darklordjames View Post

Any rechargeable Ni-MH battery that is labeled as "pre-charged" or "ready to use" operates within 5-10% of any other pre-charged Ni-MH battery. Grab whichever one is cheapest and run with it. At this point, anyone buying the older style of Ni-MH battery that is not of the pre-charged variety is a sucker. Anyone recommending that that is the type of battery that you should be purchasing is either lying to you, or rather ill-informed.

I wouldn't completely agree with that. Low-discharge batteries are great for some uses, and for storing on the shelf, but standard NiMH batteries have their uses, also. First, they're cheaper. Second, they usually have higher capacities, so they can last longer in high-drain uses as long as they're charged shortly before use. For camera use, I prefer regular NiMH batteries, for example, since I want to maximize how long they'll last without having to swap them for a fresh set. That requires thinking ahead though, and charging them a day before using them.

This thread started with the question of batteries for the Xbox controller. I love the fact that Microsoft incorporated standard AA batteries in these units, so that any rechargeable can be used with them (thank you, Microsoft!). If you use the controller on a regular basis, say weekly, and keep a pair in a trickle charger, there's no real advantage of low-discharge batteries. If nothing else, you can swap out batteries just before sitting down to play.

It's up to individual users to buy what works best for them, but I wouldn't label someone as a sucker for purchasing the old-style batteries. Generally, if it's something that you use everyday or for high-drain uses, you may be better off with standard NiMHs. I'd put digital cameras, remote controls, X-box controllers, and wireless mouses in that category. Just make sure that you have a set charging at all times, and you'd be fine.

For devices that are only used occasionally, such as flashlights, label-makers, etc., or for just sitting on the shelf waiting to be used, the low-discharge versions are much better.

Scott

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Old 03-15-2009, 07:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by realdeal1115 View Post

What brand battery would you recommend? Will they hold a charge when not being used?

Sorry, I can't give any specific recommendations. I've used about five or six different brands over the years, and they'll all worked fine, with the exception of one brand. I'm not even going to mention that one, since they were purchased over eight years ago, and the industry as a whole has gotten better an better.

I don't feel that there are that many variations in brands anymore, and they should all be compatible with most chargers - just make sure it's switched to the NiMH setting and not the NiCd (if it's a dual charger).

Don't buy NiCd batteries, even if they're cheap. They are not worth the money.

I do like the Eneloops low-discharges, but I'm sure that others are fine also. Once you get used to using them, you probably won't ever imagine going back to wasteful alkalines.

One thing to keep in mind that no matter which brand you buy, you're saving money over disposables.

Good luck, and happy shopping.

Scott

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Old 03-15-2009, 08:32 PM
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I replaced all my NiMH batteries with two boxes of Eneloop and never looked back. You can get them from Costco fairly cheap. Don't waste your money on regular NiMHs.
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Old 03-15-2009, 08:55 PM - Thread Starter
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What does NiMH mean? What are regular NiMH?
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Old 03-15-2009, 09:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by realdeal1115 View Post

What does NiMH mean? What are regular NiMH?

NiMH is short for nickel-metal hydride, which refers to the chemicals makeup of the batteries. By "regular" I was referring to the non-low discharge types. They are good batteries, but lose power rather quickly between chargies (referred to as self-discharge).

In comparison, there are some newer-type NiMH batteries that are labeled as low-discharge, such as the Eneloops. These are generally more expensive, hold less power when fully-charged, but keep that power for a longer time.

Regular NiMHs will lose most of their charge after about a couple of months, while the low-discharge NiMHs will retain 70-85% of their capacity after sitting on a shelf for a year. That's why they are often referred to as ready-to-use or pre-charged.

Neither should be confused with the older NiCd (Nickel-cadmium) batteries, which you'll want to avoid.

Scott

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Old 03-15-2009, 09:33 PM
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yea, avoid Ni-Cd.

Also, while the low-self-discharge batteries have less capacity, it isn't like half or anything. I think the largest niMH AAs have 2750mAh (milli-Amp-hours). At 1.2V, each battery is 3.3 watt-hours. The current crop of low-discharge batteries are 2000mAh, or about 2.4 watt-hours...not a huge difference really.

If the primary use will be something like a digital camera where capacity matters, the traditionals are great. If it is a device you don't want to swap batteries in each month, the regular Ni-MHs are inconvenient. For a game controller, really either will do.

The low-discharge AAs really are not much more than regular ones. In fact at Walmart, the Duracell Pre-charged batteries are like a $1 more for a 4-pack than the Energizers which are traditional Ni-MH batteries. If I was buying batteries today, I would only get low-discharge batteries.

One other thing to consider...the fast-chargers heat up the batteries and will kill them. For longetivity's sake, stick with the 15-hour-type chargers.
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Old 03-16-2009, 06:11 AM
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I find that Eneloops work great. Like somebody posted above, Costco is a great place to find them, though I believe Amazon has them as well.
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Old 03-16-2009, 06:31 AM
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Another recommendation for Eneloops.... ignore the power ratings, these are all you need.

Here's a previous thread where it was discussed.
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Old 03-16-2009, 07:13 AM
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Originally Posted by Jopopsy View Post

I find that Eneloops work great. Like somebody posted above, Costco is a great place to find them, though I believe Amazon has them as well.

I picked some up after reading the original thread. I use four AAA in my harmony. They worked for nearly 3 months without a recharge...which seemed longer than standard AAAs.

I got a pack of 8 AAs, 4 AAAs, 2 D adapters and 2 C adapters + charger for $50 from Wolf Camera.
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Old 03-16-2009, 07:21 AM
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Originally Posted by bdwright77 View Post

I got a pack of 8 AAs, 4 AAAs, 2 D adapters and 2 C adapters + charger for $50 from Wolf Camera.

The same exact pack sells for $25 or less at costco. You can also buy just batteries without chargers and adapers for $18.
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Old 03-16-2009, 08:18 AM
 
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Originally Posted by tgable View Post

Eneloop is the answer, everything else is crap.

Yep. while i don't use them for xbox, i use them in my DSLR and they simply can't be beat. [IMG]http://************************************/img/2465/o09a0208gstn/POTNsmile.gif[/IMG]
[IMG]http://************************************/img/3218/n08d1214eybr/1by1.gif[/IMG]
[IMG]http://************************************/img/3200/n08d1214eybr/1by1.gif[/IMG]
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Old 03-16-2009, 09:27 AM
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Can you charge the Eneloop batteries in a normal Ni-Mh charger? Or do you need a special one designed for those batteries?
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Old 03-16-2009, 09:45 AM
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another vote for eneloop

costco has set of eneloops which comes with a charger
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Old 03-16-2009, 09:56 AM
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Can you charge the Eneloop batteries in a normal Ni-Mh charger? Or do you need a special one designed for those batteries?

I use a very old charger, they are all the same in principle.

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Old 03-16-2009, 10:10 AM
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Originally Posted by tgable View Post

I use a very old charger, they are all the same in principle.

Cool. I'm curious if your charger is one of the overnight jobbies or a fast charger model? I have both currently and I'm curious to see if anyone has charged these batteries successfully in a fast charger.
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Old 03-16-2009, 10:50 AM
 
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The magic number for a charger is "one hour". Anything less and you are hurting the battery, anything more and you are wasting your time.
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Old 03-16-2009, 11:20 AM
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Originally Posted by darklordjames View Post

The magic number for a charger is "one hour". Anything less and you are hurting the battery, anything more and you are wasting your time.

Hmmmmm. I've got an Energizer travel charger that takes about 16 hours. I assume that ultimately does the same job as the 1 hour charger, albeit at a much slower pace. I've also got a 15 minute charger that I use occasionally when my rechargeables die suddenly, but I try and avoid using that whenever possible, for the reason you mention above.
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Old 03-16-2009, 02:00 PM
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Just a few additional observations:

My Xbox 360 controller works just fine off of a set of regular rechargable Energizers, been using 4 since I got a launch model and they're still going strong. I get a bit over a week of use per charge, playing 2-3 hours a night. However...

...I use them frequently, and like has been mentioned here, the 360 controller seems to be built well as far as efficient usage of power goes. Now, the Wii controller on the other hand...a set of normal rechargables in that, and it's drained dead in under a week, regardless on how much I play it (or not). For that controller, I would definitely go for the Eneloops.

In all the above time I've been using the Energizers, I've also been charging them in a 15-min charger each time (I'm not so good at being prepared for a given gaming session, so the quick downtime is appreciated). I was fully aware that by doing so I could expect to see the battery use life drop dramatically (I planned on maybe half the normal 1000 charges it says on the package), but felt that for as cheap as the batts were at target, it was worth the tradeoff.

To date, however, I have yet to see any significant loss in performance. *shrug* They seem to have not suffered any damage. it may be worth noting that the charger is located in a cool basement, and have plenty of room around for ventilation while charging.
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Old 03-16-2009, 05:07 PM
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Having read through this entire thread I'm a bit confused.
Why has no one mentioned the Microsoft battery pack? Is it inferior and thats just general knowledge?
I use two controllers regularly with the battery pack and have no real complaint. It's not unusall for controller to not see action for a week or two but they seem to hold there charge and last for a while.
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Old 03-16-2009, 05:14 PM
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The microsoft battery pack uses regular Ni-MH AAs of whatever brand MS could get for cheap.

Bonus is it works with the Play and Charge kit, so I use the MS packs. Leaving a controller unused for 3 months will drain the battery to 1 bar, though. If you don't have the Play-charge kit, a pack of 4 AA Eneloops is probably the best option, though.

When the MS battery pack wears out, you can always crack it open and put Eneloops in there, too.
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Old 03-16-2009, 05:20 PM - Thread Starter
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Wow, ,great reading. Thanks everyone, I guess these will do the trick then?

http://www.amazon.com/Sanyo-Eneloop-...7245536&sr=8-7
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Old 03-16-2009, 08:13 PM
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yes, it will work great.

And, yes, those adapters work to make them C or D size. AA Ni-MH batteries are more than capable of putting out just as much (or more) current than alkaline Ds, in fact.
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