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Re: [BC346XT] Battery Life

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  • 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 1 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 2 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 3 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 4 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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