The Best Rechargeable Battery Charger

Updated on 24 May 2023

After 7 hours of comparing 16 battery chargers and testing up to 11 of them, we believe the Duracell CEF15EU offers the best value for money at the moment.

This comparison is certified 100% impartial and follows our selection process.

Our choice, Best high-end

Duracell CEF15 15 min

This Duracell model has the best price/performance ratio. It offers ultra-fast charging ideal for those who need their batteries always ready.

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Duracell Chargeur Ultra Rapide 15 minutes CEF15EU

With 4 LEDs, the Duracell 15-minute ultra-fast charger is capable of charging 1 to 4 AA or AAA batteries. In addition, it shuts off automatically to prevent overcharging. The device has been drop, vibration and shock tested by the brand. It boasts a quick recharge time of 5 minutes for 4 hours of battery use. In fact, in our tests, our two 850 mAh AAA batteries took no more than 15 minutes to recharge. What’s more, they came out of the charger barely warm thanks to the presence of a fan. As a result, this charger is much quieter than the others… We also liked the fact that 4 AA 1300 mAh pre-charged batteries came in the package. Finally, it comes with a 15-year Duracell warranty.

 

 

Best budget

Duracell ‎CEF27EU 45 min.

This fast-charging model has one of the most attractive quality/performance ratios in the selection. It is designed to charge 2 or 4 batteries (in pairs).

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Duracell Chargeur Piles Rechargeables Rapide 45 minutes CEF27EU

It is the only model in our top selection that requires charging batteries in pairs. However, we found its faster charging time (1h19 to charge 2 AAA batteries in our tests) to be worth it. If it doesn’t reach the 45 minutes advertised by the brand, it is because this time is indicated for a 75% charge of 750 mAh AAA batteries and not 100% of 850 mAh as we did. When we came out of the charger, we found that the batteries were hot, but not burning. On the practical side, we noted the presence in the package of 2 AA 1300 mAh batteries and two precharged AAA 750 mAh batteries. Its only weak point? It’s an impractical wall format for a power strip, for example.

 

Budget alternative

Panasonic Eneloop SmartPlus

Like the Pro version, it stands out for its design. With a charging time of 1.5 hours for AA or AAA batteries, it is aimed at those who want a fast and advanced charger.

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Panasonic Eneloop SmartPlus BQ-CC55

During our tests, we found that it took 1.5 hours to fully charge two 850 mAh AAA batteries. In addition to fast charging, the Panasonic BQ-CC55 (02) offers individual or group charging of 1 to 4 AA or AAA batteries. It also has an overcharge protection and an automatic shut-off. Being a wall-mounted model, it is quiet and aesthetically pleasing, as it has no fan, unlike the Duracell 15-minute charger. It has an LED (red, yellow or green) for each battery, so we didn’t have to wait for all the batteries to be fully charged. Another interesting detail is that it comes packaged in a box without plastic, like its big brother Pro.

 

High-end alternative

Panasonic Eneloop Pro

Effective for recharging your batteries quickly, this charger has the advantage of coming with four precharged 2500 mAh AA batteries. Displays the current battery level by colour coding.

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Panasonic Eneloop Pro BQ-CC55

The Panasonic Eneloop Pro BQ-CC55 (03) is a charger with 4 x 2500 mAh AA rechargeable batteries. During our tests, we found that they were pre-charged for convenience. This wall charger can charge 1 to 4 batteries simultaneously. Like the next model, we checked for the presence of LEDs that indicate the current charge level of each battery: green (charged), yellow (partially charged), and red (discharged). We timed the charging time of two 850 mAh AAA batteries at 1 hour and 28 minutes, which makes it slightly less efficient than the 45-minute Duracell. Finally, we would like to highlight the presence of numerous safety features, such as overheating and short-circuit protection.

 

Our selection

Our choice, Best high-endBest budgetBudget alternativeHigh-end alternative
Duracell CEF15 15 min Duracell ‎CEF27EU 45 min. Panasonic Eneloop SmartPlus Panasonic Eneloop Pro
This Duracell model has the best price/performance ratio. It offers ultra-fast charging ideal for those who need their batteries always ready. This fast-charging model has one of the most attractive quality/performance ratios in the selection. It is designed to charge 2 or 4 batteries (in pairs). Like the Pro version, it stands out for its design. With a charging time of 1.5 hours for AA or AAA batteries, it is aimed at those who want a fast and advanced charger. Effective for recharging your batteries quickly, this charger has the advantage of coming with four precharged 2500 mAh AA batteries. Displays the current battery level by colour coding.
See the price on Amazon £ 26.96 on Amazon £ 27.37 on Amazon £ 40.01 on Amazon

 

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How did we do the test?

To compare the chargers, we first looked at their size, connection system (cable, wall socket, etc.), number of slots available and whether they came with batteries. In addition, we analysed their practicality (presence of a light signal to indicate the end of charging, minimum number of batteries to be inserted, display information, presence of a USB port…).

As for the actual tests, we decided to time how long it took to recharge two 850 mAh AAA batteries empty. This allowed us to evaluate their performance.

NameNo. of slotsPossibility to recharge batteries in odd numbersPlug typeCharging time for 2 x AAA 850 mAh batteries
Duracell 15 min. CEF15EU4YesPlug-in cable with large converter15 min
Duracell 45 min. CEF27EU4NoWall plug1h19
Panasonic Eneloop Pro4YesWall plug1h28
Panasonic Eneloop SmartPlus BQ-CC554YesWall plug1h30
Amazon Basics V-3299USB-EU4NoWall plug3h15
EBL EB-690181122-FR8YesUSB cable2h23
Nitecore SC44YesClassic plug cable1h33

 

How to choose a battery charger?

You may have used rechargeable batteries to play long hours on your Gameboy. Batteries whose lifespan melted as fast as snow in summer. Today, rechargeable batteries and chargers are much more reliable. As well as reducing environmental impact, they pay for themselves in less than ten charges.

Chargeurs à piles

Particular attention should be paid to charging time.

Depending on the capacity of your rechargeable batteries, the brand of battery, the number of charge cycles they have undergone or simply how many you charge at a time, the charging time can change drastically. It may even be less than what the manufacturer advertises on the model box.

Chargeur de Piles Rechargeables

Also beware of so-called “15-minute chargers”, which can take anywhere from seven minutes to an hour to charge batteries. Even so, these models are faster than the competition.

The manufacturers do not mention any rechargeable battery models that their devices cannot tolerate, but of course, they advise buying their own.

Chargeur de Piles Rechargeables

To help you make your purchase, we invite you to consider these criteria:

  • Charging speed: a parameter that varies from model to model and depends on your use: do you need the batteries to be ready for use in one hour or eight hours?
  • Charging indicators: some models simply switch off the LEDs when charging is complete. Others indicate half charge, beep or have an LCD. If you leave your batteries charging in a corner without worrying about them, the cheaper models are for you. If you are the type of person who checks the charger several times a day to see when the batteries are ready, you will find a detailed battery status display useful.

Chargeur de Piles Rechargeables

  • Design: More powerful units tend to be bulkier and have a noisy fan. Depending on where you are going to use it, you will need to consider the design.
  • The number of batteries to be charged: charging one or three batteries is not always possible. Many chargers only allow you to charge two batteries at a time.
  • The type of batteries used: All the models in our comparison accept the most common AA and AAA rechargeable batteries, i.e. those using NiMH (nickel metal hydride) technology.

Chargeur de Piles Rechargeables

  • Safety: all the products we tested have overheating protection, which is essential for the longevity of rechargeable batteries.

 

Other chargers we recommend

EBL EB-690181122-FR (£22.01 upon publication): to recharge up to 8 batteries simultaneously. As well as offering 8 slots for AA and AAA batteries, this charger can also charge one battery at a time if necessary. In our tests, it was not the fastest to charge two batteries, but it was far from the slowest (2h11 for one and 2h36 for the other). We also received 2 x 4 AA batteries in the box, pre-charged and packed in 2 sturdy plastic cases. We regret, however, that it works with a micro-USB to USB-A cable. A simple plug would have been more practical and probably more efficient.

Nitecore SC4 (£60.48 upon publication): a high-end model full of options. During our tests, this charger stood out thanks to its large display, which shows various information such as the charge level of each battery, the current charging time, the voltage and the current power… We also noticed the presence of a USB-A output, always useful for charging electronic devices. The four slots are independent and can therefore accommodate 1 to 4 AA and/or AAA batteries at the same time. We liked the fact that it is not a wall charger, but has a cable with a classic plug. This makes it possible to use the other sockets on a power strip without blocking them. Finally, we found its performance to be one of the best (1 hour and 33 minutes for the two batteries), but without reaching the level of the Duracell 15 minutes. At the end of the tests, both the batteries and the charger were warm, but not hot.

 

Other chargers tested

Energize Recharge Pro (£32.99 upon publication): Our 2 AAA batteries were charged too slowly (4h42). In addition, it is necessary to charge the batteries 2 by 2 or 4 by 4 for them to work.

Energizer Chargeur Maxi 635043 (£19.50 upon publication): It took too long to recharge the batteries… We didn’t see the light go from red to green at any time, even after charging them for more than 7 hours. However, when we took them out, our battery tester indicated that they were full. In short, it was either faulty or too slow.

Nitecore D4 (£57.28 upon publication): In our tests, we found that the batteries did not fit as easily as with the SC4 model of the same brand (also much more efficient). On the other hand, it has the advantage of having a display that shows several interesting parameters: charging time, battery level, voltage, and power…

 

 

Translated by Selectos

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