In A Nutshell
The best Ni-MH (Nickel-Metal Hydride) battery charger is a “smart charger” like the LaCrosse BC-700 Charger (sells for $36). Smart chargers have circuitry to prevent overcharging and damaging your batteries. They also provide features that allow you to test and “renew” Ni-MH batteries. If you are looking for a charger that also charges C, D and 9V batteries, we recommend a smart charger like the Ansmann Energy 8 Charger. If you are look for a budget choice, we recommend the $12 Sanyo Battery Charger.
If you are looking for the best AA rechargeable batteries, see our article, The Best Rechargeable Batteries and Chargers.
Here are the details on the best Ni-MH battery chargers:
LaCrosse Technology BC-1000 Alpha Battery Charger
The LaCrosse Alpha BC-1000 Charger has sophisticated monitoring circuitry that controls the charging process, and it is also capable of “reconditioning” batteries by running a series of discharge-recharge cycles.
The charger shows battery voltage and charge status on its digital display. It has four separate charge channels so you can charge one, two three or four batteries at a time – even on individual charge programs. This allows you to test one battery while charging the others. It comes with four AA and four AAA batteries, four battery adapters (which convert AA sized battery to C and D sizes) and a carry case. Note, however, if you want to charge C or D size batteries, you’ll want to get the Maha chargers (details below).
It’s available from Amazon:
- LaCrosse BC-700 Charger – $36
- LaCrosse BC-1000 Alpha Charger – $60 (same as the BC-700 but includes four AA & AAA cells, plus the four C + D-cell converters)
The Maha PowerEx “Ultimate Professional” Charger
Maha’s PowerEx Ultimate Professional Charger almost lives up to its hyperbolic name. This compact charger can charge any combination of 1 to 8 batteries. You can mix and charge AA, AAA, C and D sized cells at the same time on individual charging circuits. Each battery size also has its own fixed contact charging points (i.e. not a spring). An LCD display shows charging and conditioning status of each rechargeable battery.
Maha’s universal battery chargers can restore batteries to their optimal performance level by repeatedly charging and discharging them. It also has intelligent charging technology and overcharge protection. It also comes with an international AC adaptor, and short-circuit protection.
It is available from Amazon for around $96.