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Battery Life

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  • Zach
    I just received the radio within the past week or so, and I am pretty happy with it. The one thing i have been having an issue with is battery life. I am an
    Message 1 of 15 , Jul 12, 2009
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      I just received the radio within the past week or so, and I am pretty happy with it. The one thing i have been having an issue with is battery life. I am an ex BC 246 owner and was able to get at least a good 5+ hours of the AA cells. However with the 346 i have been only been able to manage an hour at most maybe 2 hours tops.

      I know there can be at least 2 things that can effect battery consumption to a large degree. The volume at which you use the radio at, and weather you use the back light constantly or frequently. How long have any of you guys on the BB have been getting, are you getting a good cycle per charge of usage on your radios?

      Thanks
      Zach
    • JAN FINE
      If you only got 5+ hours on the BC246 it makes me wonder. I get at least 9-12 hours on the BC246. Haven t figured out how much I get on the BC346xt or BC396xt
      Message 2 of 15 , Jul 12, 2009
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        If you only got 5+ hours on the BC246 it makes me wonder. I get at least 9-12 hours on the BC246.

        Haven't figured out how much I get on the BC346xt or BC396xt but I can listen all day without a problem changing the batteries.

        ----- Original Message -----
        From: Zach
        To: BC346XT@yahoogroups.com
        Sent: Sunday, July 12, 2009 6:30 PM
        Subject: [BC346XT] Battery Life





        I just received the radio within the past week or so, and I am pretty happy with it. The one thing i have been having an issue with is battery life. I am an ex BC 246 owner and was able to get at least a good 5+ hours of the AA cells. However with the 346 i have been only been able to manage an hour at most maybe 2 hours tops.

        I know there can be at least 2 things that can effect battery consumption to a large degree. The volume at which you use the radio at, and weather you use the back light constantly or frequently. How long have any of you guys on the BB have been getting, are you getting a good cycle per charge of usage on your radios?

        Thanks
        Zach





        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • MCH
        In virtually any of the units made since the DMA scheme, I ve gotten about 10 hours of use out of any model with the backlight on and fairly heavy channel
        Message 3 of 15 , Jul 12, 2009
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          In virtually any of the units made since the DMA scheme, I've gotten
          about 10 hours of use out of any model with the backlight on and fairly
          heavy channel activity at an average 75% volume. Of course, this assumes
          the cells used are in good shape.

          Joe M.

          Zach wrote:
          > I just received the radio within the past week or so, and I am pretty happy with it. The one thing i have been having an issue with is battery life. I am an ex BC 246 owner and was able to get at least a good 5+ hours of the AA cells. However with the 346 i have been only been able to manage an hour at most maybe 2 hours tops.
          >
          > I know there can be at least 2 things that can effect battery consumption to a large degree. The volume at which you use the radio at, and weather you use the back light constantly or frequently. How long have any of you guys on the BB have been getting, are you getting a good cycle per charge of usage on your radios?
          >
          > Thanks
          > Zach
          >
          >
          >
          > ------------------------------------
          >
          > Yahoo! Groups Links
          >
          >
          >
          >
          > ------------------------------------------------------------------------
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          >
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        • Sam Smith
          I m getting about 8 hours out of mine. Be sure to give it a full 14 hour charge overnight. Sam From: Zach Sent: Sunday, July 12, 2009 6:30 PM To:
          Message 4 of 15 , Jul 12, 2009
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            I'm getting about 8 hours out of mine. Be sure to give it a full 14 hour charge overnight.

            Sam


            From: Zach
            Sent: Sunday, July 12, 2009 6:30 PM
            To: BC346XT@yahoogroups.com
            Subject: [BC346XT] Battery Life





            I just received the radio within the past week or so, and I am pretty happy with it. The one thing i have been having an issue with is battery life. I am an ex BC 246 owner and was able to get at least a good 5+ hours of the AA cells. However with the 346 i have been only been able to manage an hour at most maybe 2 hours tops.

            I know there can be at least 2 things that can effect battery consumption to a large degree. The volume at which you use the radio at, and weather you use the back light constantly or frequently. How long have any of you guys on the BB have been getting, are you getting a good cycle per charge of usage on your radios?

            Thanks
            Zach





            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          • Sam Smith
            I m getting about 8 hours out of mine. Be sure to give it a full 14 hour charge overnight. Sam From: Zach Sent: Sunday, July 12, 2009 6:30 PM To:
            Message 5 of 15 , Jul 12, 2009
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              I'm getting about 8 hours out of mine. Be sure to give it a full 14 hour charge overnight.

              Sam


              From: Zach
              Sent: Sunday, July 12, 2009 6:30 PM
              To: BC346XT@yahoogroups.com
              Subject: [BC346XT] Battery Life





              I just received the radio within the past week or so, and I am pretty happy with it. The one thing i have been having an issue with is battery life. I am an ex BC 246 owner and was able to get at least a good 5+ hours of the AA cells. However with the 346 i have been only been able to manage an hour at most maybe 2 hours tops.

              I know there can be at least 2 things that can effect battery consumption to a large degree. The volume at which you use the radio at, and weather you use the back light constantly or frequently. How long have any of you guys on the BB have been getting, are you getting a good cycle per charge of usage on your radios?

              Thanks
              Zach





              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            • John F Sullivan
              As one who has never had a scanner before the BC346XT that I received this past week, who can suggest a straight forward text guide. The supplied disc leaves
              Message 6 of 15 , Jul 12, 2009
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                As one who has never had a scanner before the BC346XT that I received this
                past week, who can suggest a straight forward text guide. The supplied disc
                leaves me baffled :-)








                In virtually any of the units made since the DMA scheme, I've gotten
                about 10 hours of use out of any model with the backlight on and fairly
                heavy channel activity at an average 75% volume. Of course, this assumes
                the cells used are in good shape.

                Joe M.

                Zach wrote:
                > I just received the radio within the past week or so, and I am pretty
                happy with it. The one thing i have been having an issue with is battery
                life. I am an ex BC 246 owner and was able to get at least a good 5+ hours
                of the AA cells. However with the 346 i have been only been able to manage
                an hour at most maybe 2 hours tops.
                >
                > I know there can be at least 2 things that can effect battery
                consumption to a large degree. The volume at which you use the radio at, and
                weather you use the back light constantly or frequently. How long have any
                of you guys on the BB have been getting, are you getting a good cycle per
                charge of usage on your radios?
                >
                > Thanks
                > Zach
                >
                >
                >
                > ------------------------------------
                >
                > Yahoo! Groups Links
                >
                >
                >
                >
                > ----------------------------------------------------------
                >
                >
                > No virus found in this incoming message.
                > Checked by AVG - www.avg.com
                > Version: 8.5.375 / Virus Database: 270.13.12/2233 - Release Date:
                07/12/09 08:20:00
                >





                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              • Roth Ritter
                You should definitely be getting a lot more than that on a full charge; you can, of course, also use higher density batteries (like 2650 mAh). The stock Uniden
                Message 7 of 15 , Jul 12, 2009
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                  You should definitely be getting a lot more than that on a full
                  charge; you can, of course, also use higher density batteries (like
                  2650 mAh). The stock Uniden set are 1800 mAh I believe, but I find
                  them to be adequate.



                  Dark Atmospheres / a s t r o p h o t o g r a p h y \
                  http://www.darkatmospheres.com/astro





                  >
                  > From: Zach
                  > Sent: Sunday, July 12, 2009 6:30 PM
                  > To: BC346XT@yahoogroups.com
                  > Subject: [BC346XT] Battery Life
                  >
                  > I just received the radio within the past week or so, and I am
                  > pretty happy with it. The one thing i have been having an issue with
                  > is battery life. I am an ex BC 246 owner and was able to get at
                  > least a good 5+ hours of the AA cells. However with the 346 i have
                  > been only been able to manage an hour at most maybe 2 hours tops.
                  >
                  > I know there can be at least 2 things that can effect battery
                  > consumption to a large degree. The volume at which you use the radio
                  > at, and weather you use the back light constantly or frequently. How
                  > long have any of you guys on the BB have been getting, are you
                  > getting a good cycle per charge of usage on your radios?
                  >
                  > Thanks
                  > Zach
                  >
                  > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                  >
                  >



                  [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                • dataman60435
                  I use Energizer 2450 rechargables and they last almost 10hours in my 396XT and 346XT...I charge them in the energizer charger NOT in the scanner.....
                  Message 8 of 15 , May 15, 2010
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                    I use Energizer 2450 rechargables and they last almost 10hours in my 396XT and 346XT...I charge them in the energizer charger NOT in the scanner.....
                  • MCH
                    Sounds like what most should get for battery life, and always use a charger designed for your cells. (IOW, not the scanner) Of course, I think he was using
                    Message 9 of 15 , May 15, 2010
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                      Sounds like what most should get for battery life, and always use a
                      charger designed for your cells. (IOW, not the scanner)

                      Of course, I think he was using alkalines, so the charge method would
                      not apply.

                      Joe M.

                      dataman60435 wrote:
                      > I use Energizer 2450 rechargables and they last almost 10hours in my 396XT and 346XT...I charge them in the energizer charger NOT in the scanner.....
                    • Eric Burris
                      If your referring to me I said I was using Energizer NiMH rechargeables that are brand new and i charge them in a full size Rayovac charger that shuts off when
                      Message 10 of 15 , May 15, 2010
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                        If your referring to me I said I was using Energizer NiMH rechargeables that
                        are brand new and i charge them in a full size Rayovac charger that shuts
                        off when charge is complete.
                        It's quite disappointing that the radio itself doesn't shut off
                        automatically, when charge is complete, like the Yeasu VX7R ham radios.

                        On Sat, May 15, 2010 at 8:14 PM, MCH <mch@...> wrote:

                        >
                        >
                        > Sounds like what most should get for battery life, and always use a
                        > charger designed for your cells. (IOW, not the scanner)
                        >
                        > Of course, I think he was using alkalines, so the charge method would
                        > not apply.
                        >
                        > Joe M.
                        >
                        >
                        > dataman60435 wrote:
                        > > I use Energizer 2450 rechargables and they last almost 10hours in my
                        > 396XT and 346XT...I charge them in the energizer charger NOT in the
                        > scanner.....
                        >
                        >



                        --
                        Eric Burris
                        KC0LDT
                        Railfan on the BNSF Emporia Subdivision


                        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                      • Joseph O'Neil
                        ... -snip- Agreed, and I ll go a step further. Does the radio completely shut down, even when you turn it off, or is it like so many other electronics that
                        Message 11 of 15 , May 16, 2010
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                          On 5/15/2010 10:28 PM, Eric Burris wrote:
                          > It's quite disappointing that the radio itself doesn't shut off
                          > automatically, when charge is complete, like the Yeasu VX7R ham radios.
                          >
                          -snip-

                          Agreed, and I'll go a step further. Does the radio completely shut
                          down, even when you turn it off, or is it like so many other electronics
                          that have a "phantom draw" even when supposedly turned off. For
                          example, after fully charging my 386xt, I left it alone for a few hours,
                          turned off, then when I turned it on, I noticed the voltage was lower by
                          a wee bit that when I first unplugged it from the charger, even though I
                          didn't use it.
                          joe
                        • MCH
                          The scanner has no way to detect when the charge is complete. The same is true for any device with cells in serial. NiMH cells should only be charged one at a
                          Message 12 of 15 , May 16, 2010
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                            The scanner has no way to detect when the charge is complete. The same
                            is true for any device with cells in serial. NiMH cells should only be
                            charged one at a time so you can detect the behavior for a fully charged
                            cell.

                            And OK on the Energizer NiMHs. I used to use those quite a bit, but I
                            now use the LSD (Low Self Discharge) cells.

                            Joe M.

                            Eric Burris wrote:
                            > It's quite disappointing that the radio itself doesn't shut off
                            > automatically, when charge is complete, like the Yeasu VX7R ham radios.
                          • Eric Burris
                            never heard of the LSD kind. i should mention the yeasu radios that has a smart charge that shuts off when complete are Lithum Ion batteries. but i do know
                            Message 13 of 15 , May 16, 2010
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                              never heard of the LSD kind. i should mention the yeasu radios that has a
                              smart charge that shuts off when complete are Lithum Ion batteries. but i
                              do know they sell chargers for ham radios that have auto shut off for NiMH's
                              but those drop chargers are like $70. after reading what you guys are
                              talking about for NiMH's its no wonder those charges are so expensive.

                              On Sun, May 16, 2010 at 9:33 PM, MCH <mch@...> wrote:

                              >
                              >
                              > The scanner has no way to detect when the charge is complete. The same
                              > is true for any device with cells in serial. NiMH cells should only be
                              > charged one at a time so you can detect the behavior for a fully charged
                              > cell.
                              >
                              > And OK on the Energizer NiMHs. I used to use those quite a bit, but I
                              > now use the LSD (Low Self Discharge) cells.
                              >
                              > Joe M.
                              >
                              >
                              > Eric Burris wrote:
                              > > It's quite disappointing that the radio itself doesn't shut off
                              > > automatically, when charge is complete, like the Yeasu VX7R ham radios.
                              >
                              >



                              --
                              Eric Burris
                              KC0LDT
                              Railfan on the BNSF Emporia Subdivision


                              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                            • MCH
                              Parts of it have to be powered all the time since the power switch is a software switch and not a hardware switch. This could be just the micro, or even just
                              Message 14 of 15 , May 16, 2010
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                                Parts of it have to be powered all the time since the power switch is a
                                software switch and not a hardware switch. This could be just the micro,
                                or even just part of it.

                                You could also be seeing some self-discharge effects on your cells.

                                Joe M.

                                Joseph O'Neil wrote:
                                > On 5/15/2010 10:28 PM, Eric Burris wrote:
                                >> It's quite disappointing that the radio itself doesn't shut off
                                >> automatically, when charge is complete, like the Yeasu VX7R ham radios.
                                >>
                                > -snip-
                                >
                                > Agreed, and I'll go a step further. Does the radio completely shut
                                > down, even when you turn it off, or is it like so many other electronics
                                > that have a "phantom draw" even when supposedly turned off. For
                                > example, after fully charging my 386xt, I left it alone for a few hours,
                                > turned off, then when I turned it on, I noticed the voltage was lower by
                                > a wee bit that when I first unplugged it from the charger, even though I
                                > didn't use it.
                                > joe
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                > ------------------------------------
                                >
                                > Yahoo! Groups Links
                                >
                                >
                                >
                                >
                              • MCH
                                Some popular LSD cells are Eneloop cells by Sanyo, and virtually any of the precharged cells. My current favorite are Rayovac. I get the highest capacity
                                Message 15 of 15 , May 16, 2010
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                                  Some popular LSD cells are "Eneloop" cells by Sanyo, and virtually any
                                  of the 'precharged' cells. My current favorite are Rayovac. I get the
                                  highest capacity of any of the several brands I've tried, and they also
                                  seem to have the lowest self-discharge rate (they hold their charge the
                                  longest when not being used). The LSD cells are only about 75% the
                                  capacity of non-LSD NiMHs, but if you go for any real length of time
                                  between uses of a device, it will last longer by the time you do need it.

                                  I'm not as much up to speed on LIon cells, but I know that the chargers
                                  you mentioned for NiMHs are doing one of three things:

                                  1. Charging slowly with a timed charge (ala Uniden), or

                                  2. Charging the cells until the first one reaches maximum charge, in
                                  which case only one cell is being fully charged, and X-1 cells are not
                                  getting fully charged (where X is the number of cells in the pack), or

                                  3. They are charging fast for a predetermined time which is a great way
                                  to destroy any rechargeable cells. It's like driving while 'riding the
                                  clutch' to control your speed as opposed to using the accelerator.
                                  Sooner or later there is going to be a big boom and a big bill with your
                                  name on it.

                                  Yes, a proper charge is more expensive then a 'blind' charge, but it is
                                  worth it when you get the maximum charge out of each cell, and some
                                  chargers will also condition (or rejuvenate) the cells.

                                  To add a proper charging circuit to a scanner would easily cost $20 or
                                  more, which likely translates to a $30-$50 charge on the cost of the
                                  scanner after you add in the firmware development costs and markup. In a
                                  way, I wish the scanners didn't have charging capability, but it is nice
                                  if you don't have anything else. And that is not a dig against any one
                                  manufacturer, as they all do the same thing. I currently use the Maha
                                  MH-C9000 chargers, but there are some other good ones out there, too,
                                  such as one made by LaCrosse. I haven't tried that one, but I've read a
                                  lot of good reviews about it. BTW, I was at a show this weekend and saw
                                  the 9000 on sale for $40. Not sure of its current normal street price.

                                  Still, if you add up the price of NiMH cells and a quality charger, you
                                  still come out far ahead of the cost of alkalines.

                                  Joe M.

                                  Eric Burris wrote:
                                  > never heard of the LSD kind. i should mention the yeasu radios that has a
                                  > smart charge that shuts off when complete are Lithum Ion batteries. but i
                                  > do know they sell chargers for ham radios that have auto shut off for NiMH's
                                  > but those drop chargers are like $70. after reading what you guys are
                                  > talking about for NiMH's its no wonder those charges are so expensive.
                                  >
                                  > On Sun, May 16, 2010 at 9:33 PM, MCH <mch@...> wrote:
                                  >
                                  >>
                                  >> The scanner has no way to detect when the charge is complete. The same
                                  >> is true for any device with cells in serial. NiMH cells should only be
                                  >> charged one at a time so you can detect the behavior for a fully charged
                                  >> cell.
                                  >>
                                  >> And OK on the Energizer NiMHs. I used to use those quite a bit, but I
                                  >> now use the LSD (Low Self Discharge) cells.
                                  >>
                                  >> Joe M.
                                  >>
                                  >>
                                  >> Eric Burris wrote:
                                  >>> It's quite disappointing that the radio itself doesn't shut off
                                  >>> automatically, when charge is complete, like the Yeasu VX7R ham radios.
                                  >>
                                  >>
                                  >
                                  >
                                  >
                                  >
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