Are Rechargeable AA Batteries Crap? (Lithium)

I picked up some rechargeable batteries and what I thought was an overkill charger on Amazon, thinking I would have a long term power solution for my AA-dependent wireless peripherals. So far it has only caused me headache.

The batteries seem to be under-powering my peripherals. I’ve tried to use them between multiple wireless keyboards, mice and even Steam controllers and they always start off ok and then the devices start dropping out after a few hours of use, quickly becoming unusable. When I pop in some normal alkaline AA’s, everything works as expected.

When I try to recharge them, I get nonsensical readouts from the charger. Some register as fully charged, some as null, and in my case, the 3rd charging bay always tries to charge the battery and it becomes very hot.

So just looking for some pointers here. Did I get crap batteries? Bad charger? What’s going on?

Your batteries aren’t rechargeable. No where in the product description says they are rechargeable.


Please message back in rage and have your face melted off with hot lithium.


Thank you, it was my misperception that all lithium batteries were rechargeable.

Do you have a recommendation for their replacement?

I have AAA versions in front of me right now as I remembered I have them in my closet for my EDC flashlight, the warning on the packaging says to dispose if used.

anyways, I also have these and they are working out quite well.


Ikea Ladda’s. They are Eneloop Pro’s with a different label. And way cheaper.


The standard Eneloops would normally last longer wouldn’t it?

Standard ones have a advertised life cycle of 2100 recharges, while pros are 500.

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… The pro’s are 2500 dear.

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@FaunCB @Novasty

Is it a capacity vs cycle tradeoff?

Standard: 500 mAh x 2100 cycles

Pro: 2550 mAh x 500 cycles

So pro still has an edge, and longer lifespan between recharges, but not 100s of percent more total life than the standard?

Sorry, looks like standard eneloops are 2000 mAh which would make them a better value overall. I was looking at 500 mAh Ladda’s.

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Ill check in a minute what brands I have

I have a few dozen AA’s I use regularly but it took buying a bad charger for me to realize that it’s worth having a decent charger

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I use the standard ones in my steam controller and they last a respectable amount of time, sorry no actual time data from me.

I was gonna get the pros when in was buying them but they were more expensive, I do not have ready access to IKEA, and upon reading the use case on the packets went with the white ones. They say the pros are for high discharge current things like camera flashes where the white ones are general use.

That said if you have an IKEA near, totally go for the own brand pro ones. Pick up like 3 or 4 packs for the same as 1 of the eneloops.

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Can you vouch for the Opus BT C3100? Or Opus in general…

Standards are 2000 mAh, you are sacrificing 550 mAh for an extra 1600 cycles approximately.


Yes, I made this correction after initial post:

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I agree, this appears to be the case.

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As for chargers, I have no experience with them, so I just bought the panasonic eneloop charger with the batteries. What with horror stories of fires and over charging.

Good charger, well made, good at a glance charge indication plenty fast (less than 6 hours by far but again no data from me)

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You can generally use any Ni-MH charger and not care. I have these interesting Energizer 15 min chargers, but the backfire of that is they shorten battery lifespan quite quickly. Burn through so many AAs when I was using it to recharge batteries for a Wii remote.

Also got the batteries to really high temps.

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Ok, cool. I think the Opus should be good. It was recommended on some “make your own powerwall” type blog. It managed to “charge” several unchargeable batteries for hours on end without burning down my apartment. Let’s call that a stress test.


I know a bit more now and yeah that battery tech is plenty old and tested and safe. So chargers are chargers at this stage for Ni-Mh.

I remember having a charger as a kid 20+ Yeats ago that was very similar.

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