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Is it beneficial to use low (1000) mAh rechargeable AA batteries in remotes and keyboards?
Posted by: 3d
Date: March 26, 2019 08:01AM
Is it beneficial to use low (1000) mAh rechargeable AA batteries in remotes and keyboards rather than high (2450) mAh rechargeable AA batteries?

Ikea has two versions of their LADDA AA batteries. The 1000 mAh is labeled as "particularly useful for products with a low energy consumption, such as remote controls, computer mouse, keyboards or solar-powered products."

The 2450 mAh is labeled as "particularly useful for products with a high energy consumption, such as MP3 players, cameras, toys, flashlights and game controllers."

Should I just get the 2450 batteries and use them for both low and high energy consumption products? Or will my remotes and keyboards suffer in longevity in some way?
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Re: Is it beneficial to use low (1000) mAh rechargeable AA batteries in remotes and keyboards?
Posted by: Robert M
Date: March 26, 2019 08:32AM
3d,

I just ignore the "recommended usage" information and buy the higher capacity batteries and be done with it. To me, a battery with a higher mAH will provide just that much longer than one with a lower mAH. I suspect that is one of the reasons behind the label. In my experience, 1000 mAH batteries just won't last as long as 2450 mAH batteries when placed in the same device. If you place the lower mAH batteries in a camera/toy/etc., you'll just have to swap them out that much sooner.

Robert
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Re: Is it beneficial to use low (1000) mAh rechargeable AA batteries in remotes and keyboards?
Posted by: RAMd®d
Date: March 26, 2019 09:34AM
As to your question, there is no electrical benefit to using lower mAh rated batteries.

There may be a financial benefit depending whether you're paying a lot more for higher mAh batteries, or the lower mAh batteries are a lot cheaper.

A higher rating means longer intervals between replacement/recharging. Heavy use shortens those intervals.




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Re: Is it beneficial to use low (1000) mAh rechargeable AA batteries in remotes and keyboards?
Posted by: space-time
Date: March 26, 2019 11:15AM
Is the 2450 low self discharge?
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Re: Is it beneficial to use low (1000) mAh rechargeable AA batteries in remotes and keyboards?
Posted by: freeradical
Date: March 26, 2019 11:41AM
How do they make a 1000mAh AA battery?

Do they do it the same way that many rechargeable D cell batteries are made? By putting a AA battery inside of a D cell and filling up the extra space with packing material?
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Re: Is it beneficial to use low (1000) mAh rechargeable AA batteries in remotes and keyboards?
Posted by: M A V I C
Date: March 26, 2019 11:57AM
It costs less. What they're really saying is if you use 1000 mAh batteries in a high-draw device, they won't last long.

Personally, I still just go with alkaline batteries for low draw devices where they'll run until the battery is dead.




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Re: Is it beneficial to use low (1000) mAh rechargeable AA batteries in remotes and keyboards?
Posted by: 3d
Date: March 26, 2019 12:01PM
Excellente!

IKEA Ladda rechargeable batteries
1000mAh 4-Pack AA = $4
2450mAh 4-Pack AA = $7

So I'll just get the 2450s and be done with it.

I asked because I have new Panasonic/Eneloop 1900mAh batteries in my MagicMouse and they seem to need recharging every 2 weeks. Regular Duracells lasted 2+ months. I thought the low mAh batteries had some magic sauce baked in at the factory specifically for mice and keyboards since they are advertised as being appropriate for them. Thanks. I can now go about my day. Unencumbered with this question.
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Re: Is it beneficial to use low (1000) mAh rechargeable AA batteries in remotes and keyboards?
Posted by: M A V I C
Date: March 26, 2019 12:21PM
Why Rechargeable Batteries Are Rarely Cost Effective [lenpenzo.com]




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Re: Is it beneficial to use low (1000) mAh rechargeable AA batteries in remotes and keyboards?
Posted by: freeradical
Date: March 26, 2019 12:43PM
Quote
M A V I C
Why Rechargeable Batteries Are Rarely Cost Effective [lenpenzo.com]

True, but like he says, only for low draw devices. For these he recommends alkalines. Which leak, so I use lithiums instead.

I use a fair number of AA rechargeables. My original Magic Mouse from AAPL screams through batteries. I use them in flashlights, my Garmin GPS receiver etc.
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Re: Is it beneficial to use low (1000) mAh rechargeable AA batteries in remotes and keyboards?
Posted by: Robert M
Date: March 26, 2019 12:50PM
Mavic,

I read the article. Lots of good info except the author is surprisingly short-sighted in my opinion. Buy a charger. Buy a large pack of good quality rechargeable batteries on sale. Use them for any device for which they are appropriate and keep using them for many years. Done. Definitely cost-effective in comparison to constantly replacing alkaline batteries.

I bought a bunch of assorted rechargeables (AA, AAA, C, D, 9-Volt) and a charger for my home and for my office many many years ago. We've had to replace a small number of the AA and AAA rechargeable batteries over the years but that's about it. We're talking maybe half a dozen. the C, D and 9-volt batteries are still going strong. We're using the same chargers.

At my office, we're still using those same batteries in remotes, mice, keyboards, scales, clocks, cordless telephones. At home, for the same items, cameras and toys for Little M. You get the idea. The only time we break out alkaline batteries is for emergency devices such as smoke/carbon monoxide detectors and a handful of flashlights.

Robert
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Re: Is it beneficial to use low (1000) mAh rechargeable AA batteries in remotes and keyboards?
Posted by: freeradical
Date: March 26, 2019 12:59PM
The original Magic Mouse will easily go through two AA batteries every two weeks.

I've been using one since 2011 with my 2010 iMac.

I would have gone through 384 alkalines in that time...
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Re: Is it beneficial to use low (1000) mAh rechargeable AA batteries in remotes and keyboards?
Posted by: JoeH
Date: March 26, 2019 01:06PM
Some of the advice on rechargeable batteries will depend on which battery chemistry you are talking about, NiCd, NiMH, or something else.

For instance, standard NiMH battery cells are not designed for high discharge rate usage such as in tools, but may have a slower self discharge rate when not in use. That also makes them not a direct substitute for NiCd batteries for high discharge rate devices. They do make NiMH batteries designed for high discharge rates, but that may or may not coincide with them being high capacity as well.
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Re: Is it beneficial to use low (1000) mAh rechargeable AA batteries in remotes and keyboards?
Posted by: Robert M
Date: March 26, 2019 01:07PM
Free,

Same goes with the Magic Trackpad. Annoying enough that I decided to revert from the Magic Trackpad back to wired Logitech trackballs at home and at my office.

Robert
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Re: Is it beneficial to use low (1000) mAh rechargeable AA batteries in remotes and keyboards?
Posted by: AllGold
Date: March 26, 2019 04:33PM
The only thing is I wonder if the self-discharge rate is different between the two. And there's probably no way to determine that from the packaging or the specs.



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Re: Is it beneficial to use low (1000) mAh rechargeable AA batteries in remotes and keyboards?
Posted by: M A V I C
Date: March 26, 2019 04:34PM
Quote
Robert M
Mavic,

I read the article. Lots of good info except the author is surprisingly short-sighted in my opinion. Buy a charger. Buy a large pack of good quality rechargeable batteries on sale. Use them for any device for which they are appropriate and keep using them for many years. Done. Definitely cost-effective in comparison to constantly replacing alkaline batteries.

I bought a bunch of assorted rechargeables (AA, AAA, C, D, 9-Volt) and a charger for my home and for my office many many years ago. We've had to replace a small number of the AA and AAA rechargeable batteries over the years but that's about it. We're talking maybe half a dozen. the C, D and 9-volt batteries are still going strong. We're using the same chargers.

At my office, we're still using those same batteries in remotes, mice, keyboards, scales, clocks, cordless telephones. At home, for the same items, cameras and toys for Little M. You get the idea. The only time we break out alkaline batteries is for emergency devices such as smoke/carbon monoxide detectors and a handful of flashlights.

Robert

That link is also ~10 years old. It's just not a simple "one is always better than the other."

Eg, I have a mouse that lasts about five years on a set of alkaline batteries. At 25¢ ea vs $2.50 ea, it will take 10 changes to break even - that's 50 years.

Meanwhile, one place has a mic that last ~8hrs on either. But with mics, you don't want them going dead, so you end up replacing them well before you need to. And if someone leaves it on overnight, then you replace them a few times a week. Breakeven is five weeks, but the knowledge of always starting with a fresh set makes the breakeven a lot sooner since we pull them and charge them between uses.




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Re: Is it beneficial to use low (1000) mAh rechargeable AA batteries in remotes and keyboards?
Posted by: AllGold
Date: March 26, 2019 04:48PM
Quote
M A V I C
That link is also ~10 years old. It's just not a simple "one is always better than the other."

Eg, I have a mouse that lasts about five years on a set of alkaline batteries. At 25¢ ea vs $2.50 ea, it will take 10 changes to break even - that's 50 years.

Meanwhile, one place has a mic that last ~8hrs on either. But with mics, you don't want them going dead, so you end up replacing them well before you need to. And if someone leaves it on overnight, then you replace them a few times a week. Breakeven is five weeks, but the knowledge of always starting with a fresh set makes the breakeven a lot sooner since we pull them and charge them between uses.

thumbs up



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Re: Is it beneficial to use low (1000) mAh rechargeable AA batteries in remotes and keyboards?
Posted by: space-time
Date: March 26, 2019 05:38PM
Eg, I have a mouse that lasts about five years on a set of alkaline batteries. At 25¢ ea vs $2.50 ea, it will take 10 changes to break even - that's 50 years.

That is an awesome mouse. Can you please share the model? or is this a theoretical example?
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Re: Is it beneficial to use low (1000) mAh rechargeable AA batteries in remotes and keyboards?
Posted by: jdc
Date: March 26, 2019 06:39PM
Yeah, I was gonna say that article was 10 years old too.

I bought a eneloop kit 5+? years ago, and added some of the ikea 2450s a year later. Havent had to "buy" a AA or AAA battery since then.



----


Edited 999 time(s). Last edit at 12:08PM by jdc.
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Re: Is it beneficial to use low (1000) mAh rechargeable AA batteries in remotes and keyboards?
Posted by: M A V I C
Date: March 26, 2019 07:17PM
Quote
space-time
Eg, I have a mouse that lasts about five years on a set of alkaline batteries. At 25¢ ea vs $2.50 ea, it will take 10 changes to break even - that's 50 years.

That is an awesome mouse. Can you please share the model? or is this a theoretical example?

Old microsoft wireless mouse. We don't even use it anymore. We have Logitech mice now that last a few years on a set. M705. They advertise 3yr battery life [www.logitech.com]




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Re: Is it beneficial to use low (1000) mAh rechargeable AA batteries in remotes and keyboards?
Posted by: space-time
Date: March 27, 2019 06:04AM
Quote
M A V I C
Quote
space-time
Eg, I have a mouse that lasts about five years on a set of alkaline batteries. At 25¢ ea vs $2.50 ea, it will take 10 changes to break even - that's 50 years.

That is an awesome mouse. Can you please share the model? or is this a theoretical example?

Old microsoft wireless mouse. We don't even use it anymore. We have Logitech mice now that last a few years on a set. M705. They advertise 3yr battery life [www.logitech.com]

Thank You!
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Re: Is it beneficial to use low (1000) mAh rechargeable AA batteries in remotes and keyboards?
Posted by: Bill in NC
Date: March 27, 2019 07:05AM
eneloop rechargeable or lithium for AA/AAA applications.

modern alkaline batteries are too leak-prone for critical devices.
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Re: Is it beneficial to use low (1000) mAh rechargeable AA batteries in remotes and keyboards?
Posted by: Robert M
Date: March 27, 2019 07:07AM
Mavic,

The article might be old but the idea pushed by it was off-base back then and even more off-base now since the cost of rechargeable batteries has dropped over the years. Sale prices back then are like normal prices now, which makes sales prices that much lower. Even some of the methodology behind the article is questionable.

FWIW, wireless devices like mice and keyboards usually tear through batteries in my experience. Those that use user-replaceable/swappable batteries need them changed once a month, twice a month. Sometimes more, sometimes less. It depends on the device and how much you use it. A mouse whose batteries don't require charging and/or replacement after three years is exceptionally uncommon in my experience. It's one of the reasons I switched back to a wired trackball.

The gentleman in the article based his assessment of using rechargeable batteries in a single device over an 18 month period. The benefit and return require more time and more devices and, now, years after the article was written, they come faster.

This does make me wonder... Why did you post a link to the article in the first place without noting that it is was quite old and, to a degree, has lost its validity?

Robert



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 03/27/2019 07:09AM by Robert M.
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Re: Is it beneficial to use low (1000) mAh rechargeable AA batteries in remotes and keyboards?
Posted by: Lew Zealand
Date: March 27, 2019 11:13AM
Quote
Bill in NC
eneloop rechargeable or lithium for AA/AAA applications.

modern alkaline batteries are too leak-prone for critical devices.

This.

We're fully LSD NiMH (Eneloop and clones) in the house because of alkaline leakage alone.
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Re: Is it beneficial to use low (1000) mAh rechargeable AA batteries in remotes and keyboards?
Posted by: JoeH
Date: March 27, 2019 12:58PM
Quote
Lew Zealand
Quote
Bill in NC
eneloop rechargeable or lithium for AA/AAA applications.

modern alkaline batteries are too leak-prone for critical devices.

This.

We're fully LSD NiMH (Eneloop and clones) in the house because of alkaline leakage alone.

I'm out two Maglite 2D cell flashlights because of alkaline leakage. Used to be you could leave the alkaline batteries in a flashlight, very rarely leaked. Now they leak so often that Maglite no longer offers the repair service where they would take in one of their flashlights, remove the stuck batteries, and take care of the warranty with the battery manufacturer.
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Re: Is it beneficial to use low (1000) mAh rechargeable AA batteries in remotes and keyboards?
Posted by: AllGold
Date: March 27, 2019 04:22PM
I agree with alkaline leakage being a big problem. I have alkalines still in their packaging that leaked. mad smiley



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Re: Is it beneficial to use low (1000) mAh rechargeable AA batteries in remotes and keyboards?
Posted by: Winston
Date: March 27, 2019 10:27PM
Quote
M A V I C
It costs less. What they're really saying is if you use 1000 mAh batteries in a high-draw device, they won't last long.

Personally, I still just go with alkaline batteries for low draw devices where they'll run until the battery is dead.

As with others, alkaline leakage is an issue.


Ever try to get leaked and swollen alkaline batteries out of an Apple wireless keyboard?

Low draw devices are at greater risk because the batteries will be in them longer. It's a particular problem for those like Mini-Maglites and Apple keyboards which have a very tight tolerance sleeve for the batteries. Less so with something like a remote control that has a (relatively) large space around the batteries, and where the batteries are mounted at the bottom of the device.

In my experience, the more sealed up a device is (e.g. waterproof Maglites, Apple keyboards) the more likely alkaline batteries will leak.

But that said, I seem to only have trouble with AA and AAA sizes, not C or D.


Good luck.

- Winston



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Be seeing you.
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Re: Is it beneficial to use low (1000) mAh rechargeable AA batteries in remotes and keyboards?
Posted by: Racer X
Date: March 28, 2019 12:27AM
FWIW, I have 2 decade old NiMH batteries still testing out at about 1000 mAh. Just use a good charger. I use them in LED candles now, instead of my photo strobes. I also, oddly enough, got close to 2 decades out of some Radio Shack NiCads.

Cheap rechargeables don't save you money.
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