4 Bay Charger Recommendation

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checkerfred
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4 Bay Charger Recommendation

Hey guys, I need a good 4 bay charger. I just need a basic charger without all the extra bells and whistles, although a display would be nice to see the charging status. I currently have the Xtar VP2. I will be buying one for me but also two for gifts for my dad and father in law. They will just need to do charging as well. I would like to have 1A charging on all 4 bays so it doesn’t take forever to charge.

I’ve looked at the LiitoKala lii-500, and Nitecore Q4. I see a lot of people here use the LiitoKala but I do wonder about the build quality and longevity of it. The Nitecore Q4 I can’t seem to find any info on.

I’ve also looked at the Xtar SV2…it’s only 2 bay but is a fast charger.

checkerfred
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Also looking at Liitokala Lii-402 and Nitecore SC4

Andrew_Debbie
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I’ve had the Lii-500 for about a year. No problems at all so far. It is a bargain. It doesn’t feel like a precision instrument but the voltage readings agree with my DMM.

It is pretty foolproof which makes it a good choice as a gift.

It will run all 4 slots at 1A. The default charge rate is 500mA. You have to push the Current button twice right after putting a battery in a slot. A minor annoyance. I wish there was a secret memory mode or 1A jumper.

My expensive charger is an ISDT C4. Despite the name it only has two 18650 slots. It is good at what it does but the unique form factor greatly limits flexilbity. I can’t recommend it as a general purpose charger. It not suitable as a gift for dad unless he has an engineering degree, likes to read battery datasheets, and can download firmware updates.

Andrew_Debbie
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checkerfred wrote:
Also looking at Liitokala Lii-402 and Nitecore SC4

I have two slot Lii-202 in a drawer somewhere. I got it on one of those coupon sales, used it once and put it away. I also have an Lii-100 that I sometimes use to charge single 26650s. I think I paid 99 cents for the Lii-100.

THey all work but the Lii-500 is the one I use the most.

checkerfred
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Andrew_Debbie wrote:
I’ve had the Lii-500 for about a year. No problems at all so far. It is a bargain. It doesn’t feel like a precision instrument but the voltage readings agree with my DMM.

It is pretty foolproof which makes it a good choice as a gift.

It will run all 4 slots at 1A. The default charge rate is 500mA. You have to push the Current button twice right after putting a battery in a slot. A minor annoyance. I wish there was a secret memory mode or 1A jumper.

My expensive charger is an ISDT C4. Despite the name it only has two 18650 slots. It is good at what it does but the unique form factor greatly limits flexilbity. I can’t recommend it as a general purpose charger. It not suitable as a gift for dad unless he has an engineering degree, likes to read battery datasheets, and can download firmware updates.

Thanks! It’s pretty cheap but I wasn’t sure if it would be a foolproof easy to use charger. I’ll go ahead and pick these up

2100
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Bro, I suppose this is going to be for your new powerful light(s)? If you are selecting high-drain batts like the VTC6, LG HG2 etc (which you should), a high current fast charger is what you should consider. This enables charging up to 3 amps and charging a set of batteries that you have just used in a light be it 20 minutes or 2 hours would feel less of a hassle, and you’d actually be encouraged to use your powerful lights more often simply charging won’t take much time, if you know what i mean.

500mA to 1A is ok for lower power 1000 lm flashlights and batteries that are rated for 5-10A drain. You don’t deplete the batteries quite a lot usually.

2-3A is just going to be that much more efficient for a 6000-15000 lumen light and high-drain battery set, you are very likely to use a 4 × 18650 set comfortably below 60% even in a short run. And i believe from the other thread, you might even have a use for 2 lights simultaneously sometimes, so that’s 2 sets of batts. It’s not going to be dangerous as well as long as you are aware of what you are doing and do the necessary checks like voltage, temp etc.

I can recommend the Miboxer C4-12A. It even has a batt temperature readout which other chargers do not have, which i find that very useful in real life. It can even regulates the current down from 3A should the cell get too hot during charging, making things sort of idiot-proof.

This is a true 3A 4 bay charger and doesn’t cost much more than the other 4 bay chargers. Other 3A chargers switch to 3+2+2+3 amps or 4 × 1.5A (2 cells = 2 × 3A) when you slot in 4 cells as their electronics cannot supply that high an overall current.

checkerfred
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2100 wrote:
Bro, I suppose this is going to be for your new powerful light(s)? If you are selecting high-drain batts like the VTC6, LG HG2 etc (which you should), a high current fast charger is what you should consider. This enables charging up to 3 amps and charging a set of batteries that you have just used in a light be it 20 minutes or 2 hours would feel less of a hassle, and you’d actually be encouraged to use your powerful lights more often simply charging won’t take much time, if you know what i mean.

500mA to 1A is ok for lower power 1000 lm flashlights and batteries that are rated for 5-10A drain. You don’t deplete the batteries quite a lot usually.

2-3A is just going to be that much more efficient for a 6000-15000 lumen light and high-drain battery set, you are very likely to use a 4 × 18650 set comfortably below 60% even in a short run. And i believe from the other thread, you might even have a use for 2 lights simultaneously sometimes, so that’s 2 sets of batts. It’s not going to be dangerous as well as long as you are aware of what you are doing and do the necessary checks like voltage, temp etc.

I can recommend the Miboxer C4-12A. It even has a batt temperature readout which other chargers do not have, which i find that very useful in real life. It can even regulates the current down from 3A should the cell get too hot during charging, making things sort of idiot-proof.

This is a true 3A 4 bay charger and doesn’t cost much more than the other 4 bay chargers. Other 3A chargers switch to 3+2+2+3 amps or 4 × 1.5A (2 cells = 2 × 3A) when you slot in 4 cells as their electronics cannot supply that high an overall current.

Yup it will be for them. I also have a few lights that use some Panasonic NCR18650B’s that I have…..I was planning on getting one charger for me and two to gift to family….will this charger charge those Panasonics ok?

Andrew_Debbie
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This data sheet for the NCR18650B suggests charging at 1950mA maximum :

https://na.industrial.panasonic.com/sites/default/pidsa/files/ncr18650.pdf

This one quotes the standard charging rate as 1625mA —> https://www.batteryspace.com/prod-specs/NCR18650B.pdf

2Amps is close enough to 1.950A to be ok. Charging at 3A might shorten the life of the battery. I stick to the data sheet guidelines and don’t experiment with charging at higher rates.

HKJ gave the C4-12 a good review:

https://lygte-info.dk/review/Review%20Charger%20Miboxer%20C4-12%20UK.html

Andrew_Debbie
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HKJ review of the 402.

http://budgetlightforum.com/node/58909

Here is his review of the Lii-500:

http://budgetlightforum.com/node/41442