Author Topic: Whats the current good Li-Ion (18650 cell) desktop analyzer & charger ?  (Read 13154 times)

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Offline BravoV

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I've read the https://www.eevblog.com/forum/reviews/why-is-it-so-hard-to-get-a-proper-'all-chemistry'-charger-for-cylindrical-cells/ regarding the SkyRC MC3000 charger, so far that looks pretty nice.

I've been using Maha MH-C9000 charger & analyzer for all my NiMh cells (mostly Eneloops) for many years now, heck, I even have two of them, no complain so far.  :-+

As my 18650 cells population are getting larger and larger, so far I've been using the DIY solution using those cheap boards TP4056 based charger, which are adequate but still far from perfect. I feel its time to step up like having a MH-9000 like charger & analyzer for my Li-Ion cells, cause having a simply charger, especially with fixed C rate is not enough anymore.

So until today, is this still one of the good choice for desktop Li-Ion charger and analyzer ?

Are there any better alternatives ? Especially for electronics "tinkerers" like most of us.  :P

Also for MC3000 owners, any complaints so far ?

PS : Yes, I'm aware of HKJ's reviews.
« Last Edit: November 11, 2016, 08:49:53 am by BravoV »
 
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Online HKJ

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Re: Whats the current good Li-Ion (18650 cell) desktop analyzer & charger ?
« Reply #1 on: November 11, 2016, 01:16:10 pm »
The most common analyzing chargers are Opus BT-C3100/3400, LiitoKala 500 and the SkyRC MC3000 as the top model.

There has been a couple of problems with the MC3000, but it looks like they are fixed.
 

Offline BravoV

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Re: Whats the current good Li-Ion (18650 cell) desktop analyzer & charger ?
« Reply #2 on: November 11, 2016, 02:13:18 pm »
What problems ?

Offline David Hess

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Re: Whats the current good Li-Ion (18650 cell) desktop analyzer & charger ?
« Reply #3 on: November 11, 2016, 02:34:40 pm »
I've been using Maha MH-C9000 charger & analyzer for all my NiMh cells (mostly Eneloops) for many years now, heck, I even have two of them, no complain so far.  :-+

I recently had to replace the aluminum electrolytic capacitors in my Maha MH-C9000; they had worn out so the charger was immediately resetting itself at the beginning of the charge cycle.

I consider the MH-C9000 user interface to be horrible.  Why doesn't it carry over charge parameters for more than one cell and remember them?  It is really annoying having to up/down them for every cell.
 

Offline all_repair

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Re: Whats the current good Li-Ion (18650 cell) desktop analyzer & charger ?
« Reply #4 on: November 11, 2016, 03:26:15 pm »
Checkup nicjoy L3000.  It does 18650, AA, AAA.  Auto-detect cell type.  Able to measure capacity mAh, and internal resistance.  Can act as a USB  power bank when it is not connected to the power.
 

Offline bianchifan

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Re: Whats the current good Li-Ion (18650 cell) desktop analyzer & charger ?
« Reply #5 on: November 11, 2016, 03:46:24 pm »
1st... Opus BT-3100, I've V2.1
2nd... Any Imax B6 Clone plus OpenSource Firmware ChealiCharger
 

Online HKJ

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Re: Whats the current good Li-Ion (18650 cell) desktop analyzer & charger ?
« Reply #6 on: November 11, 2016, 04:02:28 pm »
What problems ?

Fan airflow direction has been reversed, this improves cooling a bit.
The plastic pin holding the springs broke on some of the first generation units, it has been made stronger.
As far as I know all software works now and a lot of small adjustments has been done to the charger software.
There is also made some (free) independent logging software, that can log much more than the official PC software (It is not really made, it works with many other charges and support for MC3000 has been added).
 

Offline BravoV

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Re: Whats the current good Li-Ion (18650 cell) desktop analyzer & charger ?
« Reply #7 on: November 11, 2016, 04:20:07 pm »
I've been using Maha MH-C9000 charger & analyzer for all my NiMh cells (mostly Eneloops) for many years now, heck, I even have two of them, no complain so far.  :-+

I recently had to replace the aluminum electrolytic capacitors in my Maha MH-C9000; they had worn out so the charger was immediately resetting itself at the beginning of the charge cycle.

I consider the MH-C9000 user interface to be horrible.  Why doesn't it carry over charge parameters for more than one cell and remember them?  It is really annoying having to up/down them for every cell.

Yeah, but considering its been quite a while >5 years may be ? Back at those dark ages, it was quite sophisticated imo. Really, I forgot how long I've been using them.

Though mine are working fine, thanks for the caps reminder, I will replace them, I guess they must be cheapo Capxon's grade.

Offline BravoV

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Re: Whats the current good Li-Ion (18650 cell) desktop analyzer & charger ?
« Reply #8 on: November 11, 2016, 04:22:16 pm »
Checkup nicjoy L3000.  It does 18650, AA, AAA.  Auto-detect cell type.  Able to measure capacity mAh, and internal resistance.  Can act as a USB  power bank when it is not connected to the power.

1st... Opus BT-3100, I've V2.1
2nd... Any Imax B6 Clone plus OpenSource Firmware ChealiCharger

Thanks, yeah, I've read these too, they're in list as well, but so far the "tweak-abilities" of MC3000 is really appealing, still haven't decide though.

Offline RGB255_0_0

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Re: Whats the current good Li-Ion (18650 cell) desktop analyzer & charger ?
« Reply #9 on: November 11, 2016, 04:27:38 pm »
Checkup nicjoy L3000.  It does 18650, AA, AAA.  Auto-detect cell type.  Able to measure capacity mAh, and internal resistance.  Can act as a USB  power bank when it is not connected to the power.
I can't find this one. A couple of taobao links but seem to be dead.
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Offline BravoV

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Re: Whats the current good Li-Ion (18650 cell) desktop analyzer & charger ?
« Reply #10 on: November 11, 2016, 04:27:56 pm »
Fan airflow direction has been reversed, this improves cooling a bit.
The plastic pin holding the springs broke on some of the first generation units, it has been made stronger.
As far as I know all software works now and a lot of small adjustments has been done to the charger software.

Ok, I guess now its quite matured either soft & hardware, and that they went into the troubles to modify the plastic molding for the plastic thingy, small thing though but thats good to know.  :-+


There is also made some (free) independent logging software, that can log much more than the official PC software (It is not really made, it works with many other charges and support for MC3000 has been added).

What software ? Do you mean DataExplorer ?
« Last Edit: November 11, 2016, 04:30:57 pm by BravoV »
 

Online HKJ

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Re: Whats the current good Li-Ion (18650 cell) desktop analyzer & charger ?
« Reply #11 on: November 11, 2016, 04:34:36 pm »
What software ? Do you mean DataExplorer ?

Exactly.
 

Offline David Hess

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Re: Whats the current good Li-Ion (18650 cell) desktop analyzer & charger ?
« Reply #12 on: November 11, 2016, 09:42:41 pm »
I've been using Maha MH-C9000 charger & analyzer for all my NiMh cells (mostly Eneloops) for many years now, heck, I even have two of them, no complain so far.  :-+

I recently had to replace the aluminum electrolytic capacitors in my Maha MH-C9000; they had worn out so the charger was immediately resetting itself at the beginning of the charge cycle.

I consider the MH-C9000 user interface to be horrible.  Why doesn't it carry over charge parameters for more than one cell and remember them?  It is really annoying having to up/down them for every cell.

Yeah, but considering its been quite a while >5 years may be ? Back at those dark ages, it was quite sophisticated imo. Really, I forgot how long I've been using them.

Though mine are working fine, thanks for the caps reminder, I will replace them, I guess they must be cheapo Capxon's grade.

I did not keep the parts but I do not think they were any reputable brand.  I verified they were bad on my impedance bridge after removing them; some had dropped to lower than 1/2 of their marked value and all had a dissipation factor at least an order of magnitude higher than the point of wearout.

I replaced them with 30+ year old solid tantalum capacitors from some junked analog oscilloscopes. :)

I would like to find a AA/AAA charger with a better user interface but they all pretty much suck.  I have considered designing one and making it available but I suspect there is a patent minefield waiting.
 

Offline kripton2035

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Re: Whats the current good Li-Ion (18650 cell) desktop analyzer & charger ?
« Reply #13 on: November 11, 2016, 10:41:43 pm »
the patent is only if you want to sell your creation.
 

Offline all_repair

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Re: Whats the current good Li-Ion (18650 cell) desktop analyzer & charger ?
« Reply #14 on: November 12, 2016, 12:24:36 am »
Checkup nicjoy L3000.  It does 18650, AA, AAA.  Auto-detect cell type.  Able to measure capacity mAh, and internal resistance.  Can act as a USB  power bank when it is not connected to the power.
I can't find this one. A couple of taobao links but seem to be dead.
I bought from Taobao.  Quite a new product so it might be a while before the trader list it on Amazon or Ebay.  Default charging is 500mA, can set to 250mA, 750, or 1000mA.

http://m.intl.taobao.com/detail/detail.html?spm=a1z5f.7632060.0.0&id=521596530285
 

Offline RGB255_0_0

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Re: Whats the current good Li-Ion (18650 cell) desktop analyzer & charger ?
« Reply #15 on: November 12, 2016, 01:11:01 pm »
Checkup nicjoy L3000.  It does 18650, AA, AAA.  Auto-detect cell type.  Able to measure capacity mAh, and internal resistance.  Can act as a USB  power bank when it is not connected to the power.
I can't find this one. A couple of taobao links but seem to be dead.
I bought from Taobao.  Quite a new product so it might be a while before the trader list it on Amazon or Ebay.  Default charging is 500mA, can set to 250mA, 750, or 1000mA.

http://m.intl.taobao.com/detail/detail.html?spm=a1z5f.7632060.0.0&id=521596530285
Thanks. Works out to be about £17. Shame I can't read Chinese  :-DD
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Offline BravoV

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Re: Whats the current good Li-Ion (18650 cell) desktop analyzer & charger ?
« Reply #16 on: November 12, 2016, 05:49:12 pm »
Decision made, MC3000 it is.

Main reason, its capable of charging up to 3 Amps as 18650 3500mAH cells are getting norm nowdays. Majority of the desktop smart chargers out there are maxed out only at 1 Amp.

I love that officially it can be calibrated by user with resolution down to 1mV and 1mA, hell yeah, especially for the many dmms owners like most of us here.  :-DD

The powerful connectivity to PC and smartphone is also a great feature.

Also looks like the manufacturer is still maintaining the firmware (latest one just released few days ago), even though its 2 years old now, and with an over kill ST's Arm mcu as the brain, the future for more features or enhancements are still wide opened, imo.

Offline kripton2035

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Re: Whats the current good Li-Ion (18650 cell) desktop analyzer & charger ?
« Reply #17 on: November 12, 2016, 06:16:06 pm »
it is the more expensive, but not that much, and I would go with this one too ...
for now I have an ELV ALC8500 and don't need this one !
 

Offline BravoV

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Re: Whats the current good Li-Ion (18650 cell) desktop analyzer & charger ?
« Reply #18 on: November 12, 2016, 06:30:35 pm »
C'mon kripton, its not fair to compare that beast with common desktop chargers, what a nice toy you got there.  :-+

Offline kripton2035

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Re: Whats the current good Li-Ion (18650 cell) desktop analyzer & charger ?
« Reply #19 on: November 12, 2016, 07:54:36 pm »
costed me 100€... was defective with no power ... a fuse inside the main transformer and voilà ...
still I had to dismantle the transformer to find the fuse inside ... and reassemble it after that.

I also have a nitecore D4 for everyday's charging. nice toy too and I use it more often than the alc8500
the alc is mainly to put back to life nimh that have zero volts, this is working very well
the nitecore does not do it, and so most of the chargers also don't
« Last Edit: November 12, 2016, 07:58:25 pm by kripton2035 »
 

Offline Rick Law

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Re: Whats the current good Li-Ion (18650 cell) desktop analyzer & charger ?
« Reply #20 on: November 12, 2016, 09:03:39 pm »
I am a little late for this party since I saw the "decision made" reply there.  But for others searching for solutions to this same problem...

I use the Opus BT3400, which is (according to what I found the on the web) BT-3100 with V2.1 software for the USA.  Overall, the BT3400 works rather well.  Shows the actual charge current, accommodates overly long 18650 (*72mm)...

The issue to me is the pulse charging/discharging - it makes comparison a bit more difficult.  To illustrate with example, if the BT3400 tests the capacity to 1000mAH, it was tested under pulse discharge.  If and how it manipulates the number to a steady-current discharge capacity is a mystery to me.  My independent tests (with fixed resistor load) would show around 800-900mAH (80% to 90% of shown).  I don't know for sure if it was due to a pulsing discharge (v fix load), or that my fixed resistor load is varying the current.  In any event, I am using the BC3400's number as the number I used for load

Second issue is the LCD is not as even as I like.  Cell 1 part of the display has a small smear visible only when back-light is on.

Other than that, all good news.  The ability to charge NiMH is great.  I pop my AAA/AA in as needed.

*72mm:
When I emailed the seller and asked if it can fit a cell that long.  He was shocked I have cells that long.  Well, most of my repacks with protection (at the time) topped out around 71mm.  I have since repacked all of them to top out at < 70mm.  Then, I got a repack from FastTech NCR18650BE with proctection board, 71mm +- a little...  They are the best batteries I have in my battery box now, but they are the longest I got.

So, the fact that you can jam a 72mm cell into the BT3400 is quite a plus, at least until you can get your packing techniques better.  And the BT3400 wont be the one limiting your cell length when you hunt for repacks to buy.
« Last Edit: November 12, 2016, 09:19:03 pm by Rick Law »
 

Offline thm_w

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Re: Whats the current good Li-Ion (18650 cell) desktop analyzer & charger ?
« Reply #21 on: November 15, 2016, 11:47:47 pm »
Checkup nicjoy L3000.  It does 18650, AA, AAA.  Auto-detect cell type.  Able to measure capacity mAh, and internal resistance.  Can act as a USB  power bank when it is not connected to the power.
I can't find this one. A couple of taobao links but seem to be dead.
I bought from Taobao.  Quite a new product so it might be a while before the trader list it on Amazon or Ebay.  Default charging is 500mA, can set to 250mA, 750, or 1000mA.

http://m.intl.taobao.com/detail/detail.html?spm=a1z5f.7632060.0.0&id=521596530285

Is it the same as this one? https://www.aliexpress.com/item/New-VariCore-V40-LCD-3-7V-18650-Battery-Charger-for-AA-AAA-26650-18500-16340-14500/32709426260.html
 

Offline ez24

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Offline ez24

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Re: Whats the current good Li-Ion (18650 cell) desktop analyzer & charger ?
« Reply #24 on: November 16, 2016, 07:28:20 am »

https://www.aliexpress.com/item/New-VariCore-V40-LCD-3-7V-18650-Battery-Charger-for-AA-AAA-26650-18500-16340-14500/32709426260.html

Not with that name on, but try comparing it to LiitoKala Lii-500: http://lygte-info.dk/review/Review%20Charger%20LiitoKala%20Lii-500%20UK.html
It may be the same charger.
[/quote]

Whew  :-+   I ordered it before you answered and it looks like it may be a winner (price wise).   I want it only for Li bats, I have a Panasonic charger that is rated very good by you for AA and AAA.  I am getting away from C and D, so I will have only AAA, AA, 18650.

Quote
Conclusion

I like the user interface, put a couple of batteries in and select mode/current with the respective buttons. As long as the number keys are not touched the selection is for all slots (Showing all slot numbers would have been nice).
The charger is very good at charging LiIon, but stops a bit early on NiMH.
The fast test works fine on LiIon, but with NiMH it shows too much capacity (the full test looks more correct).
As usual I am not impressed with the resistance function.
The usb output has very low noise, but need multiple cells to work well with 1A load.

The final result must be that it is a good charger with a useful analyze function.

I will see if they are the same when I get it if I can find this post.  I still cannot organize posts  |O

thanks
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