MiBoxer C4-12 overcharges INR18650-30Q to 4.48v!

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d_t_a
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MiBoxer C4-12 overcharges INR18650-30Q to 4.48v!

The MiBoxer C4-12 charger seems to be a promising charger so I decided to take a look at it.

The links here mostly point to the MiBoxer C4-12 from Amazon store, but since Amazon does not ship (or would be too expensive to ship) to my country, I instead looked for another seller from AliExpress.

 

I just got the package and was testing it since a couple of days ago.

But today I got the biggest surprise, it overcharged my precious INR18650-30Q to 4.48v!

 

I only recorded the video of the display after it display 4.48v (as evidence):

similar video with multimeter to check the overcharged voltage

 

I suppose MiBoxer brand still has a lot to do even if it "occasionally" overcharges only.

(to be fair, the past 2 days, I have tested charging maybe around 8 batteries already from various states of charge, and they seem to have charged properly; but today's overcharging is simply totally unacceptable).

Edited by: d_t_a on 02/01/2018 - 01:35
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Looks like slot three could be a problem child.

http://budgetlightforum.com/node/58640

 

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ARsee
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Slot-3, insertion of any battery, the screen read "err" Mine was purchased via Amazon

d_t_a
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Ok, so “3” is the evil number, will be more careful of that slot when doing any charging..

everydaysurvivalgear
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Funnily enough my slot 3 some times doesn’t read the cell.

No error it just wont start? It only started happening now.

southland
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Have the Miboxer C4, not the C4-12. When charging brand new cells, protected 3400mah cells, cell starting voltage is 3.6 for all cells, all cells charged at .8 amps to 4.20 volts. All charge to around the same voltage but the charging time is a lot different for each cell.

cell 1 3 hours 3 minutes
cell 2 3 hours 17 minutes
cell 3 3 hours 30 minutes
cell 4 3 hours 3 minutes

Why is this happening. Have eight brand new identical cells and it happened on each set of four, same charging times.

tatasal
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southland wrote:
Have the Miboxer C4, not the C4-12. When charging brand new cells, protected 3400mah cells, cell starting voltage is 3.6 for all cells, all cells charged at .8 amps to 4.20 volts. All charge to around the same voltage but the charging time is a lot different for each cell.

cell 1 3 hours 3 minutes
cell 2 3 hours 17 minutes
cell 3 3 hours 30 minutes
cell 4 3 hours 3 minutes

Why is this happening. Have eight brand new identical cells and it happened on each set of four, same charging times.

In my experience with different brands of chargers, even though my cells are brand-new or hardly-used, there are always occasions when that happens, even with my new Eneloops.

IR is of course always a factor.

ARsee
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everydaysurvivalgear wrote:
Funnily enough my slot 3 some times doesn’t read the cell. No error it just wont start? It only started happening now.

Mine began in the same way. Slots 1,2 & 4 the battery would read and select best setting. Slot 3 would start to read, then go blank. I would jiggle the cell and the reading would briefly read, then disappear. I had to fiddle with slot 3 several times before the read-out would display. Only to display a few seconds and disappear again. Then it would not display anymore. It would only say “Err”

southland
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tatasal wrote:
southland wrote:
Have the Miboxer C4, not the C4-12. When charging brand new cells, protected 3400mah cells, cell starting voltage is 3.6 for all cells, all cells charged at .8 amps to 4.20 volts. All charge to around the same voltage but the charging time is a lot different for each cell.

cell 1 3 hours 3 minutes
cell 2 3 hours 17 minutes
cell 3 3 hours 30 minutes
cell 4 3 hours 3 minutes

Why is this happening. Have eight brand new identical cells and it happened on each set of four, same charging times.

In my experience with different brands of chargers, even though my cells are brand-new or hardly-used, there are always occasions when that happens, even with my new Eneloops.

IR is of course always a factor.


Maybe it is IR, these are high quality cells and it seems like the IR would be similar for each.
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I’ve had a similar kind of issue with a hobby charger where a particular bay will charge differently to the rest no matter what battery pack I plug into it. Also the issue (for same battery packs) never showed on a different charger. So I don’t think it’s an IR issue rather a discrepancy within the charger. Sad to here so many people having issue with this charger. I recently bought an Adeaska so I’m kinda glad I didn’t end up with a C4-12 but don’t actually know much about the Adeaska reliability.

everydaysurvivalgear
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Well if mine is stuffed might as well pull it apart and see what is going wrong.

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Yes please. If you can, post high-res pics of the PCB including part designators and case markings. I’d be especially interested in the SMPS ICs and what I assume are charge controller ICs for each charging path…

edit Never mind the pictures, the relevant ones all seem to be included in Lexel’s review.

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I’ve had mine since late October. Knock on wood, so far no issues with slot 3 or any other slot, for that matter, other than the charger rebooting itself after a while due to overheating if I charge all 4 slots at 3A.

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This might be a really stupid question, but is possible the software is screwed up between voltages of NiMh and Li-ion?

I only ask because I’ve just opened the C4-12 I won in the MiBoxer competition and spotted that termination voltage for NiMh is 1.48 v.

Just a coincidence?

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gravelmonkey wrote:
This might be a really stupid question, but is possible the software is screwed up between voltages of NiMh and Li-ion?

But why would it only be screwed up on slot 3?
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Does output voltage in open slots (without a cell) mean anything? Mine is as follows:

Slot 1: 4.97V
Slot 2: 4.97V
Slot 3: 4.97V
Slot 4: 4.86V

Wondering why they are not all the same. Alas, slot 4 is also used for power bank function, so maybe the added circuitry affects open voltage.

What are you guys seeing on yours, especially those of you that are having problems with Slot 3 overcharging?

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My $0.02 & Possibly good advice: Put electrical tape over the poles on slot #3 to ensure you don’t inadvertently put a cell there. If it were me, I think I would discontinue use of the charger completely. Everyone here on this forum knows the dangers of Li-Ion use, more so over-discharging not as much overcharging, but still risky.
It is quite ridiculous that a new charger should have any issues of this sort at all. Mi-Boxer apparently has do QC issues…

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ARsee
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Pete7874 wrote:
What are you guys seeing on yours, especially those of you that are having problems with Slot 3 overcharging?

Mine was returned so I can not test.
Two new ones are in the box un-opened.

everydaysurvivalgear
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gravelmonkey wrote:
This might be a really stupid question, but is possible the software is screwed up between voltages of NiMh and Li-ion?

I only ask because I’ve just opened the C4-12 I won in the MiBoxer competition and spotted that termination voltage for NiMh is 1.48 v.

Just a coincidence?

That is about perfect termination voltage for NiMH cells they should terminate around 1.5v. That voltage will drop when the cell settles the voltage should stabilize to around 1.3/// any where around there. Newer cells may sit at 1.38 older cells around 1.32 maybe?
Depending on the age and quality of cell.

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Stumbled across this thread, after recently placing an order for this charger with GearBest. I hope mine doesn’t have problems with slot 3. Shocked

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Seeing as how each slot seems to have independent circuitry based on the ability to set separate current and other parameters by individual slot I would expect that any slot could mess up. Minor performance variations would be expected due to component variations. HJK also says slots are independent in his review as I recall.

I note too looking on Amazon apparently the same charger is being sold under multiple brand names. At least two Miboxer chargers are also apparently being sold under the name Kinden on Amazon based on photos and specifications so far as I can tell.

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d_t_a just curious, why did you post this same thing twice? and both on the same day

http://budgetlightforum.com/node/58763

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RobertB wrote:
d_t_a just curious, why did you post this same thing twice? and both on the same day

http://budgetlightforum.com/node/58763


He said one thread was about the charger and one thread was about the battery.

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d_t_a
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JasonWW wrote:
RobertB wrote:
d_t_a just curious, why did you post this same thing twice? and both on the same day

http://budgetlightforum.com/node/58763


He said one thread was about the charger and one thread was about the battery.

Thanks JasonWW.

So this thread is about the MiBoxer C4-12 charger… anyway, I’ve been using the charger (but still keeping a close eye on the charger regularly… ) and it has not reproduced the same overcharging. I dare not place my Samsung INR18650-30Qs (I only have 4pcs right now, and a couple of my additional orders of 30Qs are either cancelled or are taking much longer than 2 months to arrive).

Thus far, the only high-drain batteries I’ve been regularly charging in the C4-12 are Sony VTC6 (which almost always hits 3.0A charging current automatically due to their low resistance reading by the charger.) None of the VTC6 have experienced the “overcharging” mentioned above yet though.

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Man this charger spells trouble. At first I thought about getting one, but after reading about all these problems… And a charger overcharging cells is really something I don’t want to happen ever.

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LichtAn wrote:
Man this charger spells trouble. At first I thought about getting one, but after reading about all these problems… And a charger overcharging cells is really something I don’t want to happen ever.

All charger brands have a few bad ones from time to time. Just like you ocassionally get a bad flashlight sometimes. If you only bought perfect products, you would own nothing! Lol

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I just discovered this thread and it reminds my of my input I left here
My C4-12 was in error on slot 3 and 4, indicating unreasonable values for internal resistance. Slot 4 even indicated “NiMH” instead of “Li-Ion” when putting in a brand new Samsung 30Q Button Top. Fortunately, Amazon has a very uncomplicated return policy, so I sent it back. Mine was sold from “Kinden” on Amazon.de, see here.

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JasonWW wrote:
LichtAn wrote:
Man this charger spells trouble. At first I thought about getting one, but after reading about all these problems… And a charger overcharging cells is really something I don’t want to happen ever.
All charger brands have a few bad ones from time to time. Just like you ocassionally get a bad flashlight sometimes. If you only bought perfect products, you would own nothing! Lol

I mean you got to admit there’s a lot of negative reports coming in about this charger lately. And there’s a little difference for me between having just “some” malfunction or actually a fault that threatens my home and health. Sad Maybe I’m dramatizing the overcharging, I don’t know.

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I think Miboxer has sold hundreds if not thousands of this model charger. I’ve heard a handful of people say they’ve gotten an error message On slot 3 and DTA got an overcharge once and it never happened again.

I do think you’re overreacting considering the small percentage that have had a problem, but it’s important that you buy something that you feel good about. If you’re getting bad vibes from the C4-12, that’s okay. There are a lot of other chargers to choose from.

I don’t think there’s many to choose from that can do 3 amps x 4, though. Most chargers do 1 amp x 4. If you want a simple charger that can do 2 amps x 2, Xtar makes the SV2 Rocket. I’ve got some of those. They only have 4 different charge rates, though. Sometimes they are on sale under $20 each.

I’ve only got one C4-12 and use it all the time. I’ve had zero problems from it. I’ll report back if it starts to act up.

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There are no flawless products, and unhappy people are more likely to express their displeasure than happy people.

That said, AFAICT, MiBoxer is new to the game, and has only been selling chargers for little more than a year.

Their original charger, the C4, was found not to terminate.

Their next charger, the C2-3000, initially had an automatic mode that some felt used too much current for smaller cells. To their credit, they quickly came out with a revised version that allowed manual current override*, and I believe the C4’s non-termination behavior has also been addressed.

I haven’t followed the C2-4000 and 6000 too closely, but haven’t noticed any common complaints about them.

The slot 3 glitches do seem to be a shared issued with the C4-12.

This overcharging incident could be an isolated incident, or there could still be some uncovered bugs in the software*, which may need further refinement.

The company may have some growing pains, but if they work diligently to address the current issues, and to prevent others from occurring in the future, it will do well, as the products are otherwise appealing. If it doesn’t, then it may find that its tenure as a charger maker will be short-lived.

  • the software-controlled nature of these chargers seems to be a double-edged sword thus far. If users are to put their trust in it, it needs to work reliably and consistently, which some find may not be the case.

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