Lipo Battery Charger Reviews

Lipo battery charger reviews of popular chargers, with full specifications, impressions and Pros and Cons

The typical beginner RC flyer has a few chargers that came with Ready To Fly (RTF) airplanes.

After a while, these chargers will need upgrading. They are reliable but relatively slow when charging and usually have no way of discharging. It is essential, for lipo battery life, that batteries are not left in a fully charged state and need to be discharged to the storage voltage level.

These lipo battery charger reviews were assembled to help select the best charger for you.

The most important statistic to consider, when researching lipo battery chargers is the wattage. The higher this number is, then the faster batteries can be charged/discharged.

Multi port chargers are very useful, as more than one battery can be handled at a time.

No. 1-Hitec X4AC+4  Channel AC/DC charger       Return to Contents

The Hitec X4+ 4 channel AC/DC Charger

I recently purchased this charger and have found it excellent for my particular demands. The fact that I can service 4 Lipo batteries at the same time is a great time saver.

Previously I was using a single port charger and found that with multiple batteries in play, I was always charging/discharging batteries. Now it is a simple matter to look after my lipos.

I find it easy to program and was glad to find that the process was very similar to my older chargers.

I did have one battery that was beginning to not take a full charge. I proceeded to balance charge it, on the new charger, and low and behold it recovered! I do not know why, but balance charging on other chargers had no effect. There must be something magic about Hitec chargers!

I keep my charger at home, so I always use the 120V input. It does come with the alternate 11-18V DC power source, which could be necessary in the field. For you guys in the UK, it is not available for 240V input, so you would have to use a voltage converter.






The Hitech X4 Multi charger X4 AC Plus

Our choice: The best of the lipo battery charger reviews-

The Hitec X4 AC+4 Channel AC/DC Charger

We love that we can charge/discharge 4 batteries, of different chemistry, at the same time.



Specification notes

Regarding the Charge Power of 50 Watts per channel. Remember that Watts=Volts x Amps (Ohm's Law). So a 3S Lipo has a nominal voltage of 11.1V, which equates out to 4.5A. Whereas a 6S pack=22.2V which results in a charge current of 2.2A.

This is not a problem, if like me , you charge your lipos at 1C and do not want a faster charge. I prefer to have several batteries available, rather than fast charging and I think my packs last a little longer.



Package Contents

  • Hitec X4 Plus
  • AC input cable
  • DC input cable
  • Battery Clamps for Lead Acid battery
  • Alligator clip charging connector
  • Tamiya charging connector
  • Receiver battery charging connector
  • 2 x bare wire connectors (Solder on your own connectors)
  • 1 x TF/FP Type Lipo balancer board and connector
  • 1 x HP/PQ Type Lipo balancer board and connector
  • 1 x XH type balancer board and connector



Extra Items Required

With 4 charging ports available, you will need extra cables. I bought 4 Deans to banana plug leads and then used deans adapters to hook up any other battery types. See this page for details of these adapters.





You could consider a multi connector cable such as the Apex shown below.

It has the following connectors built in- T-Plug (Deans), TRX, Tamiya, Mini Tamiya, JST, Futaba Transmitter, JR Transmitter, Glow Ignitor, EC3, EC5, Sermos, XT60, Micro Connector, Futaba Receiver, JR Receiver, Micro Ultra Plug Style, Pico Connector, and Pigtails

Please note that the length of the leads is relatively short and not really suited to charging batteries that are not removed from the air-frame. NiCd and NiMh can be charged "in-place" but lipos should be removed for charging/discharging, due to the always possible fire risk.





If you would like to balance charge (Why not make every charge a balance charge?-It makes perfect sense!) then you will also need 3 more balancer boards and leads.

If your batteries have different balance connectors then a visit to this Amazon page may be useful.




Hitec X4 Plus Multi Charger Instruction Manual

With 3 or 4 lipo battery charger reviews, it may help to take a look at the manual, before deciding which one to invest in. Click here to take a look at the Hitec X4 manual.

It is well written, in good English and is fairly easy to follow.

With 24 pages, it does contain a lot of information and is of a convenient size.





Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Ability to charge 4 batteries at the same time
  • Built in AC converter means that a separate power supply is not required (Note that some lipo chargers are DC only, so do need a power supply for home use)
  • Can use a 12V battery, for in-the -field use
  • Can handle all your types of batteries (Lipo,Lilon,LiFe,NiCd, NiMh.)
  • Simple and quick to program
  • Easy to see LCD display for each channel
  • Automatic check of battery hooked up, prior to charging
  • Auto cut-off when charge is complete
  • Displays charging current, number of cells, battery voltage,charging time and charged capacity(i.e. how many mA has been charged into the battery)
  • Reasonable price compared to buying separate chargers
  • Remembers last program, even if dis-connected
  • Gives "Beep" when cycle is complete

Cons

  • Fast charging of large capacity cells is not really possible.
  • Fan cutting in and out is noisy (Necessary to keep things cool)
  • No main power On/Off switch meaning you have to unplug the unit when not in use





Lipo Battery Charger Reviews of the X4, by Customers

After reading a LOT of reviews, the vast majority were positive with an average of 4.7 out of a maximum of 5 stars. (From Amazon with a total of 57 reviews)

Most common objections were-

  • Not enough cables supplied with unit
  • Low power of 50 Watts means long charge times for big lipos
  • Program selection takes a little learning
  • No polarity protection when using a 12V battery
  • No On/Off switch

I believe we have covered the majority of these complaints and only the last two are real objections which is a large reason why we have selected this charger as the best for our use.





No. 2-Thunder Power RC TP820CD                        Return to Contents

Thunderpower RC TP820CD Lipo charger

This is the highest power unit mentioned in this lipo battery charger review. It has 400A of power per channel and two channels to give a total power of 800A!

It does need a separate power supply, which is not inexpensive, but it will charge large batteries fast and is a very reliable unit. 

If you charge at more than 1C, please ensure your battery can take the high current. As I said before, I prefer never to charge at more than 1C and expect my batteries to last a little longer.

A good friend of mine has owned this charger for some time and is very happy with it. He sometimes decides to go flying and puts his batteries on charge then and in a very short time he is ready to go.



Thunderpower RC TP820CD Lipo charger

Our choice for No.2 in these lipo battery charger reviews-

The Thunder Power RC TP820CD Dual port 20A DC Lipo Charger With Balancers

If you are looking for a high power Multi-charger to charge your lipos FAST-then here it is!

Package Contents

  • 2-battery clamps for 12V battery
  • 2-charge leads (Bare ended for soldering on your own connectors)
  • 2-balance boards with connector cables
  • 1-TP820CD Dual port charger 



Manual for the TP820CD

Click here if you would like to take a look at this good, useful manual


Extra Items Required-A Separate Power Supply

A power supply is necessary and one with enough capacity to supply the 800W charger.



Hitec EPowerbox 50A power supply

After a lot of internet research we found this power supply

Hitec RCD Inc.ePowerbox 50A, AC/DC Power Supply

Hitec RCD Inc. ePowerbox AC/DC Power Supply Manual

Although only 4 pages long, this manual contains useful information and specifications. Click here to take a look.

 Note that if you want to use the full power of the charger (800W ), then you must select an appropriate voltage (Greater than 15V)


Pros & Cons of the TP820CD

Pros

  • Lots of power. If you own large lipos and like to charge them fast, then this is the charger for you! 
  • One report says 2- 6S 5800mAh lipo packs were charged, at 2C in 25mins.
  • Able to charge 2 batteries at the same time
  • Can handle all your types of batteries (Lipo,Lilon,LiFe,NiCd, NiMh.)
  • Simple and quick to program
  • Easy to see LCD display for each channel
  • Automatic check of battery hooked up, prior to charging
  • The perfect choice for safe and ultra-fast charging at rates of 3-6C+ for the latest-generation LiPo batteries
  • Advanced Storage Mode function for LiPo/ LiIon/LiFe (A123) batteries will automatically charge or discharge as needed to achieve storage level voltage
  • 24 user-programmable memories plus built-in data logging and viewing with internal resistance measurement, peak battery voltage, average discharge voltage, charger input voltage, temperature and more
  • Fully-adjustable charge capacity limit, per cell end voltage and low voltage cutoff settings for all chemistries to maximize safety, charge and discharge performance

Cons

  • A separate power supply is required
  • No On/Off switch on the charger

Lipo Battery Charger Reviews of the TP820, by Customers

It was difficult to find a lot of reviews, but those that we did read were very positive.

Only one out of about 10 reviews was negative. This customer complained that the charger wore out his batteries.

I would suggest that the charger was set at too high a charge rate for the particular battery being charged. Please check all the settings prior to charging and I am sure you will be happy with this unit.

As mentioned, I do have a friend who has been using this charger for a number of years and he is very satisfied with the performance.





No. 3-Prophet Sport Quad 4 x 100W AC/DC Charger
Return to Contents

Dynamite Prophet Sport Quad 4 x 100W charger

This charger has been chosen for these lipo battery charger reviews because it has some of the combined features of the previous two chargers.

Namely, it can charge-discharge 4 batteries of different types at the same time and it has high power wattage to charge batteries fast.

The Dynamite name has been around for a long time and has a reputation for reliability.


Package Contents





  • Charger
  • 2× EC3 charge leads
  •  2× T-Type (Deans) charge leads
  •  1× receiver charge leads
  •  2× JST-XH Balance boards
  •  1 × Thunder Power Balance Board

Extra Items Required

You will need extra balancing leads as only 3 are provided. (Unusual as this is a 4 port charger!) and probably some adapters to suit your batteries.

Take a look here for more information on adapters.


The Manual for the Prophet Sport Quad 4 x 100W Charger

This is a basic manual, that is written in 4 languages, so it is 4 times the size it could be!

However the English version is easy to understand and should help a lot. Click here to see.


Pros & Cons

Pros

  • 4 batteries can be handled at the same time
  • No separate power supply is required
  • 100 watts of power is available at each port, so charge/discharge times can be fast.(Up to 6 Amp charge power per channel is available)
  • Integrated safety features include, short circuit, reverse polarity, low input voltage and over temperature protection.
  • Easy to use quad LCD displays
  • Multi-Voltage Charges 1–6S LiPo/LiFe, 1–15C NiMH and 2–24V Pb
  • Main power On/Off switch

Cons

  • The fan is a little loud, in operation,like a hair dryer on low.

 Conclusions of Lipo Battery Charger Reviews Of the Prophet Sport Quad

Because this charger has not been available for long, reviews are not that many, to date. Of 4 read, there was no negative reports and all gave 5 out of 5 stars, except one (and he gave 4)


Lipo Battery Charger Reviews Miscellaneous

Why you should trust me                                                                      Return to Contents


When I decided to write a page entitled " Lipo battery charger reviews" I had just a basic knowledge of RC chargers.

I have been in this hobby for over 60 years (Yes I am an old coot!) and the first charger I owned was a plugin wall unit for charging the RC transmitter and receiver NiCd batteries.

In those days electric power was just a dream and the only way to power an RC airplane was to use a glow or gas engine.

The advent of Lipo batteries gave rise to the computer chargers we see on this page and the first Lipo charger I used was included with the Parkzone airplane I purchased and was only good for charging the battery in that plane.

I have done a lot of research and spoken to many of my flying buddies regarding chargers and batteries and I now have a rudimentary idea of the state of the art in today's market place of RC chargers. I do not, in any way, consider myself an expert on Lipos and RC electrics but I do know what makes a good deal and is useful for the average RC flyer.

Lipo Battery Charger Reviews Conclusions                                       Return to Contents

The Hitec was chosen as #1 because it is good value for the money. If your batteries are on the smaller scale ( Say 4S maximum) then this is the charger for you and you do not want a super fast charge/discharge cycle.

If you use the larger size lipos, then consider the Sport Quad. With 100W of power per port, 6S batteries are no problem.

The Thunder power is included because it has a LOT of power at 400W per port and can handle the biggest batteries that are available to date.

All of the above, included in these lipo battery charger reviews are from reputable manufacturers, with good USA based service. After sales service has a good reputation, so if you run into a problem, help is available.




› Lipo Battery Charger Reviews


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