I bought my first 4-pack of 2nd generation Eneloops and their 2 slot “quick” charger combo with two first generation AAA Eneloops back in 2010 when I had no knowledge about batteries, chargers and proper care for both.
Reason - digital camera that took AA’s instead of custom lithium battery.
Given that it was my first experience with Eneloops I never really broke them in as required with new NiMh rechargeables.
AAA got barely used, wrapper on one of them pretty soon slided slightly to the top of the positive end of the battery, leaving some 1mm unwrapped at the bottom sides of the battery.
I tested their capacity yesterday after charge-discharge and they were somewhere slightly below 700mAh, somewhere around 660-670.
So, aside from no proper conditioning and one slippery wrapper, I guess they were good, being unused for the most of the time. I wonder why the wrapper slidded to the top so easily, given there was no force or lubricants applied to it?
Now, with AA Eneloops its a bit different story, they too, were never conditioned, neither abused, however, digital camera, that I used them in, was quite demanding, as in, it took 2 batteries at once and I usually used them until the battery level was too low and the camera shut down. Not that I abused that camera and shot all day and night long with flash or 720p videos, so it wasnt used all that frequent.
Still, batteries got kind of visually worn out with this camera, their positive ends have dot marks from cameras internals, the same goes for negative ends, the plate on some of them even looks slightly bent inwards!
Perhaps from some occasional use in recent years in some lights? Very little use such way(ie, in lights that is)!
I dropped some of them couple of times on the ground accidentally, but that should not have contributed to their somewhat low capacity today, which is around 1770-1820 for three of them and less than 1700 for the fourth one when discharging at both 1A and 0.5A. Further discharge at 0.1 yielded little bit more, putting the paltry <1700mAh battery around 1720mAh, while the others close to or exceeding 1800mAh.
I remember Kreisler-squirrel saying that his old and frequently used Eneloops had above 2000mAh when new and still had above 1900mAh when re-freshed, if Im nost mistaken.
Since I had only 4xAA Eneloops and 2xAAA ones(of which I had very little to no use of at all, since I dont have any AAA gadgets at home except for Thrunite Ti) they were never used as my main flashlight batteries thus my Turnigy’s had the honour!
Now that I have started to upgrade my AA stock with latest Eneloops, I decided to take the old ones and see if they could be brought back to a new life, thus the speculation about their capacity, life cycle and future usability.
Will update this thread after I do initial discharge and charge of the fresh ones these days.
Thanks for reading and will appreciate your thoughts and stories about your Eneloops, nevermind the generation or usage patterns :)!
Little remark regarding 8 of the regular Eneloops that I bought for someone else, I didnt bother with break-in cycle with C9000 given how much time it would consume(3 days non-stop charging for all 8 ), so I just did multiple discharge-charge cycles, I think 2 or 3, all at pretty tender charging and discharging currents and got less than 1900mAh on all of them, so it looks like they will need either two break-in cycles on C9000 or few more discharge-charge cycles.