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Summary:

Back in early 2006, during a period of unremitting international travel, I joked that my life was no longer a series of circadian rhythms, but my life’s pulses were now an expression of remaining battery life. For many web workers, dependence on the battery-driven vagaries of […]

Back in early 2006, during a period of unremitting international travel, I joked that my life was no longer a series of circadian rhythms, but my life’s pulses were now an expression of remaining battery life.

For many web workers, dependence on the battery-driven vagaries of cameras, phones, laptops and iPods can crimp your mobility.

So, hot on the heels of our recent item on the Myth Of All Day Computing, comes Energizer‘s announcement of four new easy-to-use chargers to complement their rechargeable battery line… a family charger, compact charger, ‘easy’ charger and intriguingly a ’15-minute’ charger.

Sadly, with the lack of standards in battery form factors, these products are only useful for those driven on AA and AAA batteries. I live for the day when I can pop 452 rechargeable AA batteries into my MacBook!

  1. Don’t fall for the 15 minute charge trick . . . sure, they charge in 15 minutes but they discharge fast too even if you don’t use them. Say you charge some up for use in a Wiimote and you use the Wii for 30 minutes or so and put it away and don’t play again for a week. Well, those batteries will be dead.

    Read Jeff’s blog entry for more:
    http://www.codinghorror.com/blog/archives/001078.html

    I got the charger he recommend and it’s been great. I don’t play my Wii as much as I would like but I can leave a set of batteries in that La Crosse charger for weeks and they’re always at full charge ready for when I need them. I also essentially converted some of those useless 15 minute charge batteries to regular rechargeable by draining them with the new charger and then just charging them the normal way.

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  2. I’m surprised you didn’t talk to me before posting about rechargeables! :)

    Sheldon is right. Don’t fall for ‘quick’ chargers. They do more damage than good. They put more strain on the battery and reduce it’s life.

    I could go on for a day talking about it, but Jeff Atwood has a great article which is worth a read (mentioned in the comment by Sheldon above).

    I have a set of Sanyo Eneloops. They are probably the best set of rechargeables that I have ever used.

    I’ve not got round to buying a La Cross charger, but the one I have seems to do the job quite nicely – A ‘no-name’ brand charger (with cut off) from 7dayshop.co.uk.

    Rechargeables have a tendency to dishcharge quite quickly (around 20% per month). Although the ones I’ve used in the past have lost charge at a much higher rate! I’ve noticed the higher capacity chargers tend to drain the quickest.

    However, the Eneloops fair much better in this respect, despite having a lower overall capacity than most (2000mAh compared with 2700MAh for instance). In fact, they last a lot longer than my 2700mAh rchargeables.

    I’ve used the Energiser batteries in the past and they were particularly bad when it came to discharge rates, from my experience. I was forever recharging them.

    Just my tuppence worth. I’ll stop now before I get too dull :)

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  3. Correction: When I said ‘higher capacity chargers’ I meant ‘higher capacity batteries’.

    And the capacities mentioned are for the AA (R6) batteries.

    Next time I’ll proof read, by using my eyes, before posting :)

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  4. I own two of these products, so a couple notes – the Family Charger does C, D, and 9V in addition to AA and AAA (great for kids toys!).

    The big advantage to the quick charger is that it also comes with a DC auto adapter. This makes it great for camping or traveling when you don’t have a power source other than your car nearby. I get a couple hundred charges out of a set of batteries and used in my GPS.

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  5. My husband told me to read this post and I dug it!!

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