Benchmarked battery performance

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    • #11444
      • Posts: 1

      Back in the mists of time before economies collapsed I decided to test a bunch of different AAA batteries in my Mini-Z to see if they made any real difference to performance. I needed to replace some aging nicads and dead batteries in remotes so I decided since I was going to buy a bunch I’d buy sets of 4 and test them before putting them away in different devices. With my current financial situation I can’t afford to buy any more sets but I’ve tested seven different batteries and figured I might as well put the data out there as its interesting and may be of use to others.

      The graph is a jpg image stored on Photobucket:battery performance graph

      I have a non-stock MR-02MM chassis which I use for knocking about the lounge room floor…so not a serious racer nor a seriously modified car. Quicker than stock but slower than what most people here probably have. I’ve used the Tamiya Speed Checker using the 300m test and ran freshly charged batteries (or out of the packet alkalines) until the car didn’t budge any more. Testing I kept as consistent as possible, on the same surface following the same process etc. All the rechargeable batteries I’d already ran them in the car for a cycle previously.

      With the two alkalines (Duracell and Duracell Ultra) I’m glad to see a significant difference between them. Shows Duracell are not just writing and word Ultra on regular batteries and passing them off at a premium!

      Regarding the DoCo batteries. Don’t. Just don’t. I picked up a whole heap from the computer markets originally to replace all the batteries I was getting rid of. I figured even if they’re not that great they’ll be fine for remotes. Nope. Just over half of them freshly charged and into a battery tester registered 10% or less charge. Only 1 tested 100% and 4 in total 80% or more charge (these were the best so these are what I used for my testing here). El cheapo batteries from dodgy sources seriously just don’t bother (and you can see how bad even the best of the DoCos tested).

      Personally I was expecting the best performers to be the Jaycar batteries (Powertech brand) and Eveready to be pretty poor. Likewise I expected the Powertech Enekeep to perform poorly since these are they newer breed which claim to retain most of their charge when stored for long periods, so naturally I assumed there’d be a tradeoff in performance. Well I was pretty wrong, the 700mAH Evereadys worked fantastically and blew away the 900mAH Powertechs. But the real surprise was the Powertech Enekeeps…fantastically consistant performance above all the rest (unless you only need batteries for a run of less than 5min). I have to say given the performance I’m seeing and the long term retention of the Enekeeps they look to be worth getting.

      I don’t see I’ll have any spare cash anytime soon to try to order a selection of other batteries from an online RC car store but maybe one day (it would be nice to see one or two of the “pro” batteries some people go on about and really test them). Maybe in a year or two I can revisit some of the batteries so see how well they age (if they are keeping or losing their performance) or even get some “heat sink” battery covers and test if they have a measurable effect too. I’m glad there is a measurable difference in the tests I’ve done already, a 10% difference is significant in a race or even if you can’t afford to upgrade part (or you have a different rc car brand that isn’t upgradeable) then a change of battery could be the way to go.

      Hope someone else finds this of use, cheers.

    • #59974
      • Posts: 315

      Thanks for the info. I’ve found that those Powertechs have a short life span, with cells often dying. These were probably duds, as the ones that survived are still OK.

      Surprisingly, I also found that the Varta’s have a short life span. My favorite is Energiser Nimh’s, I don’t know about performance (but looking at the graph they’re all pretty close anyway), just going on lifespan.

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