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Old Apr 12, 2005, 6:05 PM   #1
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My Fuji S5500 uses 4XAAs. I use generic NIMH 2300s in it, with a generic 5 hour rapid charger from a discount electronics chain.

After I finish using the camera, I charge both pairs evenly, so that no pair is ever more charged than the other. I usually get plenty of shots out of them... until recently.

The work camera's batteries went dead, I was close to home, so I pulled out two batteries from my camera and used them to get me out of trouble.

Then I slapped those two batteries on the charger. From then on, that same pair will ALWAYS run out of puff first, and usually far quicker than the other pair. I discharge them fully with a flashlight, recharge them, slap them in again for another cycle, and it still happens.

I'm getting some new batteries today, but I'm puzzled how using them in a different camera could apparently kill them. Maybe they were faulty from the start?

Does anybody have any thoughts on this?
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Old Apr 12, 2005, 8:26 PM   #2
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First off - NEVER discharge batteries in a flashlight. Don't care what everybody else says, it draws the batteries down too deep. Use the "battery discharge" option in your camera. A near fully charged set of 2300mah batteries will take about 3.5 hours to discharge.

I get conflicting opinions on the memory effect on NiMH batteries. The camera mfgs. (In the 5100/5500 manual) says they WILL develope a memory. The battery manufacturer of my current batteries say they won't. I get the same contridictory statements on the web.

Until I see PROOF, I'm going to treat them as though they will developethe memory effect and use the camera to discharge them. *** Your post and similar only show PROOF that the effect DOES exist. ***

New NiMH batteries are supposed to be cycled a few times before put into use. It could be that you charged the new set an put them to work. The batteries may not be charging to peak. (The memory effect.) The best thing to do is discharge them with the camera then recharge. Do this for three cycles.
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Old Apr 13, 2005, 6:12 PM   #3
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Ken - thanks for your reply. I bought a brand new set of batteries yesterday, so I'll cycle them as you say.

None of these new batteries are EVER going into that work camera either!

Jev
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Old Apr 13, 2005, 9:57 PM   #4
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:shock:Let me revise the discharge. I did mine in the camera again last night and it took over 6.5 hrs. to discharge. And that was my 2100's not the 2300's I thought I had in the camera. Sooooooooo it seems the batteries just get better the first few times you cycle them.

By the way, I had my 2300's sitting in the bag for the last 3 weeks. I checked the voltage and they read 1.45v. I put them in the camera this morning to discharge and they took about 7.0 hours! I think the 1-3% /per day self drain figures I see on the net are grossly exaggerated. I't way under 1%!
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Old Apr 14, 2005, 8:27 AM   #5
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Yeah - that discharge function seems to take ages:sad:

Mine's been going for the past 4 hours already, maybe when I get up tomorrow morning they'll be done.

This may sound like a silly question - but if the camera is turned on to discharge the batteries for all those hours - could it be unhealthy for the camera?
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Old Apr 14, 2005, 10:02 AM   #6
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Of course, there are chargers out there that can cycle (discharge and recharge)the batteries for you automatically.

This may be much easier and provide less wear on your camera's circuitry. Also, you could thenperform these functions while using your camera.

Just a thought.

-jeff
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Old Apr 14, 2005, 11:22 PM   #7
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I've only noticed a slight warming to the base of the camera during the discharge cycle. I doubt that it's enough to harm the camera. Leaving the camera in a closed car would get much hotter than that! One thing for sure, it's a good test of your batteries and an indication of how long you could be "shooting".

I agree with getting a discharge/charge battery charger. I'd be interested in the LaCrosse BC-900 once I hear/see more "field" tests. All the gadget guys must have them by now but I'd like to see more detail reviews.
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Old Apr 15, 2005, 7:42 AM   #8
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We have a relatively limited array of chargers and batteries to choose from here in oz. I like the look of the LaCrosse charger - finding one that sells them in Australia would be a challenge though.

Thanks to CCWKen and everybody else who posted a response - much appreciated.

Jev

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Old Apr 15, 2005, 10:23 AM   #9
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lhtorrie wrote:
Quote:
...The work camera's batteries went dead, I was close to home, so I pulled out two batteries from my camera and used them to get me out of trouble.

Then I slapped those two batteries on the charger...
1. Buy lots more Ni-MH AA batteries. They're very cheap. Keep lots fully charged and remember to top them up regularly.

2. Try & keep them in sets, so they're nearly matched. I put mine in stes of 4 in a littlepolybag.

3. Don't do as you've just done and mismatch the sets until...

4, You've bought a 'smart charger' of some kind, that has a discharge/recharge function that will recondition the cells so they're well matched again.

Good Luck!, Alan T
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Old Apr 15, 2005, 10:55 AM   #10
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Ni-Cad and Ni-MH don't have a memory effect in the sense that the capacity is not permanently lost. A couple charge discharge cycles usually brings them back up to capacity. The loss of capacity at full charge is related to how much of the current producing chemical is unoxidized.
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