BEST SINGLE CELL Li-ION CHARGER OF 2016

(so far)

The "BEST" of anything is what works for you to keep you from smoking. With that said I have over 100 different atomizers and there have been a couple improvements this year worth noting.

EFEST LUC V2

EFEST LUC V4

I have many, I seem to accumulate these like atomizers and mods. And I get all of my chargers and batteries from imrbatteries.com. I don't know these guys and have never met them I just know they sell authentics and not knock-off crap, are here in the US and they have an excellent reputation and I have had no complaints with them. Note this website is about e-Cigarettes but I have other hobbies and many devices that use Li-Ion batteries. As long as the device takes a single cell battery, these two can charge them right and they are relatively inexpensive. And unlike others, the spring contacts don't get stuck so you can put batteries in one handed easily. They also show the voltage on every cell.

Most mods have a built in USB charging port and those work just fine but I find the better mods make it easy to pull the battery for charging on a separate charger that charges better and faster.

Nitecore, XSTAR and EFEST do fine. It's hard to go wrong.

But I would have to say the HOHM TECH HOHM Base, 4 Channel Digital Battery Charger gets an honorable mention. But like the Nitecores, it suffers from spring clips that get stuck. Ok so I have to come clean. HOHM TECH and I have not always seen eye to eye. They have great engineers and work with University personnel in California for designing their products. It's the marketing I have issues with. BIG issues. Although I will give them credit since the Wrecker G2, they have toned things down a little. But just a little. With that said, don't let the hype and BS marketing stop you. HOHM Tech makes good batteries, decent mods and a great charger. Note Designed in America, manufactured in China. This charger will revive dead cells, charge any chemistry including Li-Ion, LiFePO4, NiMH, and NiCd. It will also charge any size; 22650, 18650, 18490, 18350, 17670, 17500, 16430 (RCR123), 14500, 10440. And it will charge two batteries at two amps. But what sets this charger apart from the rest is the manual buttons that allow you to select what you want, the ability to revive dead cells, the ability to determine capacity, how it charges and what it displays.

My only beef with all Li-Ion single cell battery chargers is they do not have temperature sensors in the cell bays. I truly wish HOHM Tech or XSTAR would do this. With simple thermocouples or thermoswitches or even diodes (some diodes and photosensors can detect heat) the charger would know to stop charging based on cell temperature or better yet adjust charge rate based on cell temp. This would be an excellent safety feature and IMHO the most important. Not to mention, they would be the first in the market to do the right thing. Most intelligent chargers try to do this with chemistry sensing and internal resistance sensing. Nothing beats an actual temperature sensor though.  And yes, I would pay more for that feature. I have chargers for AIRSOFT that have a thermocouple and yes I can and have used them to charge single cell Li-Ion with a battery holder and a rubber band holding the thermocouple on the cell.

I would also like to see a feature that allows you to select charge end state voltage as I would prefer 4.1V. Because charging to 4.1V doubles cycle life (battery life) at the expense of only 10% capacity (maH). With that said, none of these do that to my knowledge though you can find some in the RC Hobby market. I truly wish HOHM Tech would do this as well.

Don't scrimp on a battery charger. Don't scrimp on batteries. Select the correct battery for your mod. Never charge a Li-Ion unattended. Keep a Class D fire extinguisher nearby.

Do set your charger on a metal base or stone/ceramic trivet just in case and not under cabinets. This is easy. Go to Lowes or Home Depot and buy a single tile of your choice, go down the hardware aisle and pick up a pack of stick on rubber bumper feet. Put the feet on the bottom of the tile and sit your charger on the tile. If anything does go badly, that will help mitigate the damage. Some people get a sheet of aluminum, I do not advise that. A Stainless steel sheet or pan would be better, but not aluminum. Though I truly believe a marble/travertine or porcelain trivet is the best. This is also a great way to insulate stone table tops from hot pans, coffee makers etc. Keep your expensive quartz or granite tops damage free, make these trivets and use them, its cheap easy and effective.

Another good charger packed with features is the XTAR VP4 Dragon, unfortunately you pay a hefty premium for it and it doesn't have battery temperature sensors or 4.1V charge selection. So really, the only notable feature this has over the Hohm Base is A series and 3S lipo for 3X the cost. Yes it is expensive and only four bays. I have a six bay and a couple 4 bays and a few single cell chargers. There are quality 8 bay chargers as well.

Honorable mentions to GYRFLACON and OPUS also.

Any of the XTAR, Nitecore or Efest will work fine for most people, even those that only sport one or two battery slots.

Unfortunates and what not to look for:

Everything else.

I don't have any experience with soshine but imrbatteries is selling them. I would stay away until more reviews are in. I know the others are good. I have nitcores and Xstars from one slot, two slot and four slots and they all work about the same except sometimes the slide contacts on the nitecores and Hohm Base get jammed up. That doesn't happen with the EFest and Xtars I have.

 

   

 

 

All the information contained in these pages are only the opinions of the author and the author is not an expert at anything.