New XTAR VC8

22 posts / 0 new
Last post
bmengineer
bmengineer's picture
Offline
Last seen: 6 hours 21 min ago
Joined: 01/26/2018 - 11:38
Posts: 974
Location: Ontario, Canada
New XTAR VC8

XTAR posted these images in their Facebook group - looks like they're working on their biggest charger yet!

No other word yet, but the picture of the back of the charger shows some information:

  • USB-C input up to 9V/2A
  • Charges cells at 1x3A, 2x2A, 4x1A, or 8x0.5A
  • Support for all common Li-Ion cell formats from 10440 and 16340 through 21700 and 26650 (no word on max cell length at this time)
  • Support for all common NiMH cell formats from AAAA through C

The left display has mode/current buttons whereas the right display has display/current beneath it - the presence of a "mode" button may indicate the charger has some basic storage/capacity rating functions like the VC4S, which may make the enormous capacity more useful for some.

8 bay chargers aren't all that common (for good reason - I rarely find myself using more than 2 bays at once), but there's a market for them, and I think this is the first with USB-C.

Find all my reviews of flashlights and more gear at www.bmengineer.com

Mishanchik
Mishanchik's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: 04/12/2019 - 17:23
Posts: 85
Location: Russia

9V-2A input =18W = fail

Why not use PD input:
USB PD:
5V@2А
12V@1.5А
12V@3А
12-20V@3А
12-20V@4.75-5А

It was possible to take up to 100W from a power supply with support PD 3.0

It could give up 8×3A!!!

18Wt input in 2019 charger – this is fail!

Lexel
Lexel's picture
Offline
Last seen: 7 hours 37 min ago
Joined: 11/01/2016 - 08:00
Posts: 5881
Location: Germany

Mishanchik wrote:
9V-2A input =18W = fail

Why not use PD input:
USB PD:
5V@2А
12V@1.5А
12V@3А
12-20V@3А
12-20V@4.75-5А

It was possible to take up to 100W from a power supply with support PD 3.0

It could give up 8×3A!!!

18Wt input in 2019 charger – this is fail!

They could also use an internal 50W PSU, so only a normal wall cable needed, should, not make it bigger, the Miboxer 4 slot C12 has internal and has 4×1.5A

jojosupir
Offline
Last seen: 1 day 5 hours ago
Joined: 02/17/2019 - 19:39
Posts: 106
Location: 1MDB

bmengineer wrote:
Support for all common Li-Ion cell formats from 10440 and 16340 through 21700 and 26650 (no word on max cell length at this time)

I read somewhere it supported protected 21700/20700 cells.
d_t_a
Offline
Last seen: 5 hours 46 min ago
Joined: 08/04/2017 - 23:58
Posts: 1780
Location: Manila, Philippines

The Xtar VC8 is listed in Xtar’s AliExpress store:

https://www.aliexpress.com/item/4000245100112.html

Quote:

  • 8-slot charger with LCD (VC8=VC4+VC4S)
  • Support QC3.0 input, max. 3A charge current
  • Type-C input
  • Five optional charging current(3A/2A/1A/0.5A/0.25A)
  • Can charge most of your batteries Apply to 3.6V/3.7V Li-ion IMR/INR/ICR 10440-26650 and 1.2V Ni-MH/Ni-CD A-AAAA batteries , btw,it can also charge protected 20700/21700 protected batteries
  • Store function and battery capacity grade function


It’s probably the first USB-powered 8-slot li-ion battery charger that I’ve encountered.

Although as mentioned, the input power (assuming 9v @ 2A = 18-watts max) would be very limiting if charging 8 slots at the same time.

If it’s similar to the Xtar VC4S (when using 9v/2A input power), then the limit could be the same: 1× 3A, 2× 2A, 4× 1A (these are for the VC4S), and then 8× 0.5A (for the VC8).

~~~

for comparison:

The Miboxer C8 (8-slot charger, uses external power, DC12v @ 3A = 36-watts) can charge at 4× 1.5A, 8× 0.8A (based on specifications).

In my actual observation for the C8, I notice that when charging between 4 to 8 slots (5, 6 or 7 li-ion batteries), the charging current automatically balances and appears to total to around 6.0 Amps (based on LCD display).

Thus if the Miboxer C8 had been charging 4 slots at 1.5A, adding another battery will automatically modify each slot charging current (assuming “automatic charging current” selection to 5× 1.2A charge current each. If add another battery, that will become 6× 1.0A each. And adding another battery to 7 batteries, becomes 0.85A each. (the “charging current” is based on what’s displayed on the C8’s LCD screen)

4× 1.5A = 6.0A
5× 1.2A = 6.0A
6× 1.0A = 6.0A
7× 0.85A = 5.95A
8× 0.8A = 6.4A

amishbill
amishbill's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 days 16 hours ago
Joined: 05/01/2019 - 10:03
Posts: 712
Location: GA

Assuming there are no Gotchas with NiMH support or charging protocols in general, I think my buddy will be very interested in this. He needs to charge lots of batteries while on vacation, but they’re not all completely dead and he has all night for the charging to complete.

DIY LT1 battery wrap image. "PDF on Google Drive":https://drive.google.com/open?id=1IHIEOi1NXu868IYNCzIM7D2Ulpxchmww

Fresh Sanyo NCR18650GAs already wrapped "for sale HERE":http://budgetlightforum.com/node/69120 if you like.

d_t_a
Offline
Last seen: 5 hours 46 min ago
Joined: 08/04/2017 - 23:58
Posts: 1780
Location: Manila, Philippines
amishbill wrote:
Assuming there are no Gotchas with NiMH support or charging protocols in general, I think my buddy will be very interested in this. He needs to charge lots of batteries while on vacation, but they’re not all completely dead and he has all night for the charging to complete.

Hopefully Xtar added some “safety” charging current limit based on battery length? (eg. VC4S can charge a new low-resistance AAA NiMh battery @ 2 Amps charging current, which is not good for the small capacity AAA NiMh battery…). Hopefully the VC8 will limit charging of AAA NiMh to maybe max 1A for AAA NiMh.

Glenn7
Offline
Last seen: 1 week 4 days ago
Joined: 01/17/2012 - 08:02
Posts: 216
Location: Tasmania Australia

I’m looking at this one Efest

bmengineer
bmengineer's picture
Offline
Last seen: 6 hours 21 min ago
Joined: 01/26/2018 - 11:38
Posts: 974
Location: Ontario, Canada
d_t_a wrote:
amishbill wrote:
Assuming there are no Gotchas with NiMH support or charging protocols in general, I think my buddy will be very interested in this. He needs to charge lots of batteries while on vacation, but they’re not all completely dead and he has all night for the charging to complete.

Hopefully Xtar added some “safety” charging current limit based on battery length? (eg. VC4S can charge a new low-resistance AAA NiMh battery @ 2 Amps charging current, which is not good for the small capacity AAA NiMh battery…). Hopefully the VC8 will limit charging of AAA NiMh to maybe max 1A for AAA NiMh.

I’d be surprised, most chargers can’t detect length.

Find all my reviews of flashlights and more gear at www.bmengineer.com

Photonica
Photonica's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 1 week ago
Joined: 09/20/2019 - 10:10
Posts: 345
Location: Midwest USA

Don’t the dual NiMH/LiIon chargers detect the chemistry? I always assumed it was by voltage.

BTW, BMEngineer – what’s the orange pen-like thing in the picture at the top of your blog?

More Photons!

bmengineer
bmengineer's picture
Offline
Last seen: 6 hours 21 min ago
Joined: 01/26/2018 - 11:38
Posts: 974
Location: Ontario, Canada

Photonica wrote:
Don’t the dual NiMH/LiIon chargers detect the chemistry? I always assumed it was by voltage.

BTW, BMEngineer – what’s the orange pen-like thing in the picture at the top of your blog?

It’s a cheap knock-off of those Exotac fire strikers. I should probably update that image eventually…

Find all my reviews of flashlights and more gear at www.bmengineer.com

d_t_a
Offline
Last seen: 5 hours 46 min ago
Joined: 08/04/2017 - 23:58
Posts: 1780
Location: Manila, Philippines
bmengineer wrote:
d_t_a wrote:
amishbill wrote:
Assuming there are no Gotchas with NiMH support or charging protocols in general, I think my buddy will be very interested in this. He needs to charge lots of batteries while on vacation, but they’re not all completely dead and he has all night for the charging to complete.

Hopefully Xtar added some “safety” charging current limit based on battery length? (eg. VC4S can charge a new low-resistance AAA NiMh battery @ 2 Amps charging current, which is not good for the small capacity AAA NiMh battery…). Hopefully the VC8 will limit charging of AAA NiMh to maybe max 1A for AAA NiMh.

I’d be surprised, most chargers can’t detect length.

Checking HKJ’s reviews and also tested some of them, these chargers use battery length to sort of limit charge current — they differ in battery length threshold to charge at the lower 0.5A current: (quotes are from HKJ’s review)

Xtar/AllMaybe TC2 <= if AllMaybe (an Xtar brand or subsidiary) uses battery length to have lower charge current, I wonder why it’s not done on the higher VC4S model)

Charge will use 0.5A charge current when battery is below about 52mm

Xtar MC1 Ant Plus

Just above 54mm battery length it will switch between 0.5A and 1A charging

Nitecore F1

Around 61mm battery length it will switch between 0.5A and 1A charging

Nitecore SC4

Charger will change between 0.5A and 2A at around 54mm

I haven’t checked which other chargers, but pretty sure there are others.

Mishanchik
Mishanchik's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: 04/12/2019 - 17:23
Posts: 85
Location: Russia

Also Nitecore UM2/UMS2/UM4/UMS4

Fox
Offline
Last seen: 6 days 16 hours ago
Joined: 03/11/2012 - 13:05
Posts: 161

What a huuuuge charger.

I dont have room on my desk for it. XP

The most ugly place in the world! Surprised

RapidLux
RapidLux's picture
Offline
Last seen: 38 min 36 sec ago
Joined: 03/24/2017 - 13:21
Posts: 393

Does it have thermal sensors? I don’t buy chargers without temperature control as this is one of the most important security features.

d_t_a
Offline
Last seen: 5 hours 46 min ago
Joined: 08/04/2017 - 23:58
Posts: 1780
Location: Manila, Philippines

Ordered this charger and received it, but haven’t fully tested yet.

But some first impressions:

USB input:
- it uses USB type-C input, is able to use QC2/9v (or regular 5v/2A). I’m testing it using QC2/9v. Comes with a USB-A to USB-C cable.

(it has the same “issue” as the LT1 lantern charging, if connect via USB-C to USB-C cable to a true USB-C power adapter, then the charger doesn’t power up)

battery length supported:
-protected 21700 battery fit the slot (I have the Rofis 5000mAh protected 21700 from Rofis MR30 and Wuben 4800mAh protected 21700 from Wuben TO50R) and they fit in the VC8 slots (but is about an exact fit with little extra room). My guess is probably 76mm length.

charger design:
- the VC8 is basically 2 chargers in 1 physical body: channels/slots 1-4 is like “charger #1” channels/slots 5-8 is like “charger #2”

each charger is controlled by 2 buttons (controlled separately) and also has its own LCD display ; the functions also operate independently

charger #1 (ie. slots 1-4) = has charging / grading / storage mode (all slots in ‘charger #1’ will be doing the same mode, eg all will be in ‘grading’ or ‘storage’ mode only if set to that mode)

charger #2 (ie. slots 5-8) = has charging function only

charger #1 has its own LCD display while charger #2 has its own display (controlled separately)

-it now has manual charge current selection (2A/1A/0.5A/0.25A). The 2 outermost slots (slot #1 & #8) can be set to 3A. (each charger can be manually set to the same charging current: eg. all slots in charger #1 can be manually set to the same charging current, while all slots in charger # 2 can be manually set to a different charging current)

(I haven’t done much testing on max charge current, but the manual indicates at most (using QC2-9v): 1× 3A, 2× 2A, 4× 1A, 8× 0.5A; thus if insert 3 batteries, than can only charge at max 1A; and charging 5 or more batteries, then at most 0.5A charge current).

“charger #1” (slots 1-4) functions:

a) normal charging mode: can switch each display to show ‘charged capacity’ / ‘real-time charging current’ / battery IR ; battery voltage is always shown – charging current can be manually selected (3A/2A/1A/0.5A/0.25A) and applies to all slots in “charger #1” or in “charger #2”

b) ‘grading’ mode: the manual says it discharges at 0.3A ; the display shows discharged to a low of 2.60v (LCD briefly displays 2.59v before bouncing back to a higher voltage after a discharge) ; the charging current can be manually adjusted while in ‘grading’ mode (I haven’t verified if it does follow the manually selected charging current though)

c) in ‘storage’ mode, nothing can be changed (except to change to the other function modes) ; only displays the battery voltage

“charger #2” (slots 5-8) only has the (a) normal charging function.

LCD display backlight will automatically dim after several seconds, but can be manually turned off separately for charger #1 LCD display and charger #2 LCD display.

~~~~

- doesn’t appear to have “thermal” sensor
- doesn’t have a “time” display (charging time might have been useful in knowing if it’s taking too long to charge a high-resistance old battery)

-I haven’t checked how good it is at automatically choosing the charging current, and whether it will try to charge small capacity batteries (eg. AAA) at too high charge current… but at least has manual charge current override (but cannot select individually per slot — instead it applies to all slots 1-4 or all slots 5-8)

netprince
Offline
Last seen: 10 hours 21 min ago
Joined: 06/14/2012 - 13:48
Posts: 549
Location: Virginia

d_t_a, thanks for the info, interesting charger.

d_t_a
Offline
Last seen: 5 hours 46 min ago
Joined: 08/04/2017 - 23:58
Posts: 1780
Location: Manila, Philippines

Some more info about the VC8:
- I tried testing max charge current based on some battery length:
- for AAA/10440 and 16340/18350 batteries : max charge current will be limited to 500mA
- for AA/14500 (flat-top & button-top); I haven't tested the extra-long button-top protected 14500 yet : max charge current will be limited to 2000mA
- for 18650 & larger batteries, max charge current 3000mA can be selected
(ie. you can manually select a higher charge current, but if it's a shorter battery, the charge current will be limited to the above-mentioned charge current)

this is an improvement over the Xtar VC4S on two points:
a) VC4S doesn't allow manually selecting charging current (charge current can be indirectly limited by using a less power USB power source or placing more batteries in the slots)
b) VC4S is known to charge AAA NiMh batteries at 2000mA with its automatic charging current (non-selectable), while the VC8 limits it to 500mA, and is also manually user-selectable to the lower 250mA charge current if desired

indigo_wolf
indigo_wolf's picture
Offline
Last seen: 7 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: 11/23/2019 - 00:05
Posts: 1
Location: Northeast United States

RapidLux wrote:
Does it have thermal sensors? I don't buy chargers without temperature control as this is one of the most important security features.


About 2/3 of the way down on the product page (http://www.xtar.cc/product/XTAR-VC8-Charger-125.html). 

"Temperature Monitoring Design

Built-in real-time temperature control protection system makes the battery charging process more stable."

 

A little short on details like whether it throttles individual bays, but at least a modicum of assurance that charging won't result in sparks followed by a giant wooshing sound. 

 

ATB,

Sam

justanotherguy
Offline
Last seen: 8 hours 33 min ago
Joined: 11/26/2012 - 22:11
Posts: 918
Location: NW

Mishanchik wrote:
9V-2A input =18W = fail

Why not use PD input:
USB PD:
5V@2А
12V@1.5А
12V@3А
12-20V@3А
12-20V@4.75-5А

It was possible to take up to 100W from a power supply with support PD 3.0

It could give up 8×3A!!!

18Wt input in 2019 charger – this is fail!

This.. If I wanted to charge a bunch of batteries at .5 amps… wait I wouldnt.
I run 2 MiBoxer C4-12 ….FTW

Flashy McFlashowitz
Offline
Last seen: 1 month 2 weeks ago
Joined: 11/26/2019 - 03:27
Posts: 1

Have we determined the max 21700 length yet? I have some 74.8.8 mm protected 21700s that need a charger.

d_t_a
Offline
Last seen: 5 hours 46 min ago
Joined: 08/04/2017 - 23:58
Posts: 1780
Location: Manila, Philippines
Flashy McFlashowitz wrote:
Have we determined the max 21700 length yet? I have some 74.8.8 mm protected 21700s that need a charger.

The Xtar VC8 will fit the protected 21700.

Other chargers that will fit protected 21700 would be:
Miboxer C4-12 (new 2-button version)
Yonii-Q1 (single-slot)
Xtar SC1 (single-slot)
and of course magnetic chargers like the Olight UC, Folomov A1, etc.