Sanyo Eneloop Batteries
Sanyo's Eneloop AA cells are AWESOME.
They are the real deal: they never run down, unless you actually run them down.
I pop open the package of 8 above that arrived from Amazon, popped them in my F5 back in June, and today, they're still running like new, and I've never charged them, not even when new!
Heck, rich people just might start throwing them away like alkalines, since they run so well right out of the package.
I've been using them for a couple of years in my flashes. Unlike the older cells with higher advertised (bogus) capacities, these Eneloop never die when the flash sits unused. They just keep pounding out the flashes, and if I put a flash away for a few months, they are still fresh when I fire them up again.
When I do charge them, I use an Ni-MH charger, especially my LaCrosse BC-900.
AA Ni-MH cells got into a claimed-capacity war about 10 years ago. Starting at a perfectly reasonable 1,200 mAh, which was double that of Ni-Cd, makers got clever and used thinner and thinner internal insulators to get more metal, and thus more capacity, in each cell.
What they also did by using thinner insulators between the rolled-up layers of conductors is to increase leakage currents, so many of these cells with preposterously high claimed capacities self-discharged (ran down) within days.
Yes, maybe you'd get 2,500 mAh, but only if you ran them down immediately. Wait a week, and maybe only 1,400 mAh was left. Wait three weeks, and the spare set of cells you carried in your bag was already dead!
I have no idea what Sanyo did in the Eneloop cells, but by reverting to "only" 2,000 mAh, you now can charge today (or buy new and don't bother to charge), and months or years later, they're still charged.
The specifications claim 85% charge after 1 year, and that seems reasonable.
The key point is that the Eneloops will always be charged when you use them, and you'll always get your 2,000 mAh, instead of only getting 216mAh out of the 2,700 mAh cells that already lost 92% of their charge before you used them.
When tested in the LaCrosse BC-900, the AA Eneloops really do test at 2,000 mAh, and often 2,100 mAh or more.
The word "battery" refers to a collection of two or more permanently-connected cells.
A single cell is never referred to by engineers as a "battery." Please don't use the words "battery" or "batteries" when referring to single cells or collections thereof.
For instance, a typical flash uses four AA cells, not 4 AA batteries. It's not a battery unless those four cells are solder-tabbed together as a single battery pack. Thus, my title of "batteries" is incorrect at the top.
Your car battery is a battery: six 2V lead-acid cells in series. Your watch battery isn't; it's just single 1.55V silver-oxide cell.
Most Li-Ion camera batteries are indeed 7.4V battery packs made from two 3.7V Li-Ion cells.
Help me help you top
I support my growing family through this website, as crazy as it might seem.
The biggest help is when you use any of these links to Adorama, Amazon, B&H, eBay, Ritz, Calumet and J&R and when you get anything. It costs you nothing, and is this site's, and thus my family's, biggest source of support. eBay is always a gamble, but all the other places always have the best prices and service, which is why I've used them since before this website existed. I recommend them all personally.
If you find this page as helpful as a book you might have had to buy or a workshop you may have had to take, feel free to help me continue helping everyone.
As this page is copyrighted and formally registered, it is unlawful to make copies, especially in the form of printouts for personal use. If you wish to make a printout for personal use, you are granted one-time permission only if you PayPal me $5.00 per printout or part thereof. Thank you!
Thanks for reading!