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View Full Version : How often should AA's be recharged?



bascom
06-18-2007, 09:06 AM
I have Energizer 2500 NimH rechargeable AA's and Energizer charger. After using them 14 months with 2,000 photos and only about 8 recharges, the batteries don't work well anymore. When I put them in the camera after only a week or two (30-40 photos) it says charge the batteries. It used to be I could go two months before seeing this recharge message.

In this thread other people said rechargeable AA's should last much longer than 8 recharges and 2,000 photos:
http://www.dcresource.com/forums/showthread.php?t=31563

Could it be because I didn't recharge often enough? I usually let the batts fully discharge before recharging them. If I recharge them more often, before they fully discharge, will they last longer?

David Metsky
06-18-2007, 11:29 AM
I recharge my NiMH right before I use them. They discharge rather quickly, so two weeks is a long time for them to sit unused. I recharge my batteries every time I can, so I always go out with a full charge.

DonSchap
06-18-2007, 11:42 AM
I know this may sound silly in light of rechargeables, but I charge mine right before I deploy for shooting ... and I keep a pack of 24-regular alkaline batteries, in the car, just in case. I have 24 rechargeables on hand and ready to go. They get rotated "four-at-a-time", out of the electronic flashes. I pull them all out of the flashes and keep them in the camera bag pockets, to avoid any accidental discharges or leakage.

Personally, I've never been happy with the results you occasionally receive using rechargeables, but I also know ROUTINE USE of regular batteries will drive you broke, with three electronic flash units.

So, I compromise the cost by mixing in the use of regular alkaline cells, in emergencies. Oh, they also go in "four at a time", but usually just when things go dead and you have no time to charge. I use them in the flash until they are exhausted (no half use and then pull ... that's unwise). In this way, I eventually use up the regular alkaline cells by the end of the year and pop for another set ... yes, just in case.

You could give it a shot ... it works for me. :o

As far as the Camera's go ... I use the standard Battery Packs (BPs) on them, although the BG-E2 (EOS 20D) does have the capability of using 5x AAs to make the camera work ... I would never plan on using this aspect except in an emergency. Experience has shown that the camera and IS-equipped lensing kind of saws through those regular battery cells in nothing flat. Whatever the Canon BP-511s are made of ... the charge does last significantly longer than the standard alkaline batteries. I'll admit, I haven't even attempted to use 5-rechargeables in there. Really didn't see much point, to be honest.

I also purchased the AC-pack (ACK-E2) which allows you to plug the EOS 20D (through the BG-E2 Grip) to accept "house-power" when stationed on a tripod or some other non-mobile setup. Boy, this baby will put the grin back on your face, as it does save on charging time and you can leave the camera equipment "on" for hours on end!

Visual Reality
06-18-2007, 05:15 PM
Don, it sounds as if you are saying Alkalines last longer than rechargeables. If that's the case, well it is the other way around. A 2500mAh rechargeable battery has a good amount more juice at full charge than an Alkaline.

If not, I misread.

:cool:

bascom
06-19-2007, 08:08 AM
I recharge my NiMH right before I use them. They discharge rather quickly, so two weeks is a long time for them to sit unused. I recharge my batteries every time I can, so I always go out with a full charge.
They don't go unused for two weeks. I use the camera but I'm saying after two weeks use they need recharging. I used to be able to use them for two months before they discharged. Maybe I just need to recharge every two weeks and can still use these batteries without buying new ones.

You recharge every time you use them?! That sounds like a hassle. I hope to avoid charging them that often.

Rhys
06-19-2007, 08:25 AM
I have Energizer 2500 NimH rechargeable AA's and Energizer charger. After using them 14 months with 2,000 photos and only about 8 recharges, the batteries don't work well anymore. When I put them in the camera after only a week or two (30-40 photos) it says charge the batteries. It used to be I could go two months before seeing this recharge message.

In this thread other people said rechargeable AA's should last much longer than 8 recharges and 2,000 photos:
http://www.dcresource.com/forums/showthread.php?t=31563

Could it be because I didn't recharge often enough? I usually let the batts fully discharge before recharging them. If I recharge them more often, before they fully discharge, will they last longer?


NIMH batteries do not last forever. It is important also to use a reconditioning charger. I had to toss out a few batteries this year as they were no longer any good. I'd been using them for 5 years, however.

Rhys
06-19-2007, 08:28 AM
They don't go unused for two weeks. I use the camera but I'm saying after two weeks use they need recharging. I used to be able to use them for two months before they discharged. Maybe I just need to recharge every two weeks and can still use these batteries without buying new ones.

You recharge every time you use them?! That sounds like a hassle. I hope to avoid charging them that often.

NiMh do have a high self-discharge rate. I do suggest recharging weekly unless you use Eneloop. I'm in two minds about Eneloop - the charge lasts months but the capacity is lower. When I do a wedding, I charge all my batteries a day or two beforehand.

David Metsky
06-19-2007, 08:41 AM
You recharge every time you use them?! That sounds like a hassle. I hope to avoid charging them that often.
I take a lot of pictures when I shoot, and my main use of my S3 has been shooting telemark skiing festivals in the cold. I've regularly gone through 2 sets of 4 AAs a day. I'd never go out shooting with batteries that weren't charged at least in the past week. Two months is way too long to rely on a charge with NiMH batteries.

canon_A620
07-02-2007, 09:04 AM
I recommend Powerex 2700 cells and eneloop cells for a backup.

I have 2 sets of Powerex 2700 cells. Both sets, purchased one year apart, have amazing capacities and a low self discharge rate. I was lucky to get a good set of (8) Energizer 2500 cells, they don't have too bad a discharge rate.

I let my Powerex 2700 cells sit in my camera for over a month and then topped them off for a photo shoot. They only had to charge for 10 min!!

I've seen many cases where folks received bad batches of Energizer 2500 cells, you may be one of them.