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Adventures in Rechargeable Batteries


Does anyone have any suggestions on where to get this charger, or a similar model in the UK? Amazon are listing it as unavailable. I also can’t find the batteries recommended here either.

I’ve been using a set of NiMH AA’s with a generic free charger for my Wiimotes and am discovering that the batteries are discharging faster and faster. I’m assuming it must be the cheap generic charger.


If this is the sort of full-time blog post we’ll be getting, I wish you’d quit sooner. Thanks for some great info.


Probably the best article you’ve ever written :slight_smile:


Excellent post! Pure Jeff. Bringing the wisdom and real products recommendations to the geek masses (Who don’t have time or energy to research into this things). Thanks!


“If this is the sort of full-time blog post we’ll be getting, I wish you’d quit sooner. Thanks for some great info. Tom Clancy”

+1 to that


Does anyone have experience with rechargeable “D” batteries. I have a Roomba and the virtual walls take “D” size and I need to those replace those alkaline batteries frequently.

The problem I see with the BC-900 is that the adapter takes a AA and puts in a C or D case. That’s like putting moped motor in a pickup. How long will that last?


According to the picture of that battery, it’s 130mA for 14 hours. That would give it a rating of 1820mAh, not 1300.


The Eneloop batteries are fantastic.

Also, if you want a really cool charger, consider Rezap. It even charges Alkalines:




Check out http://www.component-shop.co.uk/html/standard.html

They sell the BC-900 in the UK…


Know what else is healthier for the planet? Fewer gadgets. :stuck_out_tongue:

I love Dvorak, but he’s a bit of a crank. Apparently, he thinks electricity is free. How much energy does a recharger consume, and why isn’t that part of the equation?

I’m not saying I think it won’t be cheaper, but it should be included in the cost.

I used to use rechargeables, but got tired of the hassle. One more thing to plug in somewhere and find a home for.


Good information, but one thing sticks out at me.

You followed advice from John Dvorak? John C. Dvorak? Writer of tech tripe and misunderstander of everything? The guy who wrote this: http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,1759,1987181,00.asp

I never thought I’d see him quoted in anything other than mockery.


I would have thought the ‘refresh’ mode mentioned would just damage the battery more, with the memory effect and all. Or are NiMH batteries resistant to that?


I dont have ANY device using AA/AAA batteries. All devices I use have rechargeable batteries inside them.
I fear I am not a geek.


hey Jeff, just a minor pointer to the differing model number for us Europeans.

La Crosse Technology BC900 (US Model) / RS900 (European Model) Battery Charger

Found a UK stockist (http://www.ukweathershop.co.uk/acatalog/technoline_BC900.html) but sadly no stock currently.


I’ve found it is also known as the Technoline iCharger in the UK. I believe Technoline are the German company who actually produce the charger, and it is sold rebranded by La Crosse.


Your succinct summary of NiMH cells hits the nail on the head. When I discovered the La Crosse BC-900 charger and Eneloop cells over a year ago, I was delighted that they solved the two main NiMH problems you mentioned. A battery engineer’s dream, the BC-900 does every battery management task perfectly by the book. In August, 2006, I bought four Eneloop cells, which I use occasionally and never have recharged. They are still usable today. Sanyo (my favorite battery manufacturer) truly nailed the self-discharge problem and raised the bar with the Eneloop cell.


Just for the sake of nitpicking, I bought my first 2800 mAH AA cells about two years ago, and AFAIK they are quite common these days. 2500s are sooo yesterday :wink:
In my experience NiMHs are much better towards self-discharging (read: lesser self-discharge) than the old NiCds. I rely on them almost every day for bicycle lights and other things I use regularly (even if it’s only once per month, just recharge time and again); if you’ve got a gadget you use very infrequently (e. g. emergency lights) I’d still recommend non-chargebles.


My favorite lie-with-numbers bit are the 36 packs of Mountain Dew which say, in bold letter, “36 Pack - 50% MORE” and then in small letters “than a 24-pack.” (No, they don’t cost the same as a 24 pack.) Thanks for doing the math for me, marketing dudes.


it is obvious that the people posting about not using batteries much any more don’t have kids. if they did, they would have 8000 toys that run on batteries and have to include batteries as a category in their budget.


Where to use batteries… well I have a few consoles sitting next to my TV, they all have wireless controllers, and they all are using eneloop rechargable batteries. I think I have about 16 batteries in there along with the batteries for my wireless mouse and keyboard.
So there is still plenty of gadgets that use em. Of course I have to recharge them but its worth it, and most importantly I never need to go out to 7/11 in the middle of the night to buy new batteries.
Long live rechargable batteries!!!