5 Best LiPo Charger with Buyers Guide- (updated 6/21/2018)

Introduction to best lipo battery charger

Before we get to the best LiPo charger, we need to understand how LiPo batteries operate and how the lipo charger will come into play.

LiPo batteries or Lithium polymer battery are based on Lithium Polymer chemistry; hence it’s unique name.

You can find LiPo batteries in cars, cellular telephones, computers, and laptops.

This specific model of battery requires a higher energy density in comparison to the other type of batteries outside of the market.

Because these batteries are rechargeable and since durability is a key factor in the battery, finding the right charger for these batteries is important.

The purpose of a lipo charger is to charge a lipo to a specified voltage point.

LIpo concept
picture courtesy of Washington.edu

The number of cells also determines the voltage and how it is based on the number of cells multiplied by 4.2v. (source).

The Lipo battery charger does this by adjusting the output voltage in order to make the current flow to the lipo.

Initially, the charge raises the voltage enough to match the amount of current flowing to what the user has selected.

This stage is referred to the Constant Current, or CC phase.

Current flows because of the difference in voltage between the charger and the pack.

The greater the difference, the greater the charge current. During the charging process, the resting voltage of the pack rises.

Once the charge voltage reaches the maximum voltage of the pack, the charger holds it there.

This stage is the Constant Voltage or CV phase.

The charging voltage is now held at the max pack voltage but currently, continues to flow because there is still a difference between the charge and pack resting voltages.

As the pack resting voltage rises, the difference will become less and less until they are very close.

During this phase, the charge current will drop off more and more until it is very small.

Once the charge current and voltage reach predetermined values, the charge cycle is complete.

lipo seperation
picture courtesy of Washington.edu

A LiPo battery could not function without its charger.

LiPo chargers vary in size and voltage, but they each serve the single purpose to recharge the battery.

The function by charging the circuit and applying a higher voltage than the battery produces.

It then forces a current to flow throughout the battery from the negative to the positive electrode.

Charging a LiPo battery can be broken down into two stages, the first being the constant current phase, meaning that the LiPo Battery charger uses a steady current by increasing the current until each voltage limit per cell is at its peak.

The second stage is the voltage source, during the balancing phase. Some of the chargers achieve the balance of the battery by individually charging each cell independently (source).

Many of the best LiPo charger options will provide a set rate that will match the majority of lower charge rate batteries.

You should check the maximum charge rate of the LiPo batteries that you already have, as some are advertised as fast charging, and then you will be able to match the appropriate charger.

When looking for a LiPo charger, one should focus on the wattage needs, depending on the type of battery wattage you are looking for.

Picking the right charger is important for the battery; overcharging can be a serious issue, leading to fire hazards and electrical malfunctions.lipo safe case

lipo battery fire
picture courtesy of Wikipedia

A safety concern when using a Lipo Battery charger is when the charger grows hot from charging.

There is an indefinite fire risk when using these chargers, it’s best to keep an eye on the charger.

Taking precaution when using these chargers can minimize risk immensely.

I would recommend a lipo guard to prevent any lipo related fired.

In addition to a potential fire hazard, leaking from the battery can be an issue when not stored in a cool, dry place.

Any contact with water might cause the battery to rust, allowing an electrolyte leak. Exposure to heat will also reduce battery life.

When buying the best LiPo charger, one should make note of the following. The speed of the charging rate is important.

Because LiPo chargers have a special technology of Lithium Polymer chemistry, they have the ability to charge at a fast rate.


Knowing the cell count of your battery is of the most importance when buying a new Lipo Battery charger, it saves the battery from overcharging and heating.

Versatility is also another important factor when purchasing a new charger.

It’s smarter to buy a charger that serves more than one battery type, making it a more economical purchase.

It allows for a larger variety of work.

Perhaps looking into automatic charging disconnect could be another benefit into looking for a LiPo battery charger.

The phrase “change current rate” is a phrase that will come across when looking for a number of options when it comes to buying LiPo battery chargers.

It is extremely important to understand that this will determine the speed of how fast each battery will be charged.

To ensure that you buy the most efficient and useful battery charger is to


  1. Check the power of the battery charger. This is important because if purchase the wrong voltage power, malfunction of the battery might occur.

  2. Check the number of cells, in the LiPo battery, the many cells determine the amount of voltage the charger would need to transfer over to the battery.

  3. Determine the maximum charge current of the LiPo battery. The LiPo battery charger should never ever go over the maximum charge of the LiPo Battery itself. The fourth and final is the maximum charge current rate of the charger.

Many of the best LiPo charger options will provide a set rate that will match the majority of lower charge rate batteries.

You should check the maximum charge rate of the LiPo batteries that you already have, as some are advertised as fast charging, and then you will be able to match the appropriate charger.

Caution while storing LiPo Batteries

If you are charging your LiPo battery for quick run then all means charge them 100%.

But if you plan on storing your LiPo batteries for extended periods of time then its advised to discharge your battery to less then 50% charge and stored in cool place.

A fully charged LiPo typically has just over 4v per cell, and, according to some battery manufacturers, shouldn’t be discharged below about 3.6v per cell. This is the reason most ESC’s have an automatic cut out feature set to around 3.6v per cell. www.radiocontroltips.com


BEST LIPO CHARGER

SKYRC iMAX B6AC V2 Dual Power Charger Review

SKYRC B6AC V2 is the newest version of the well known predecessor IMAX B6AC.

Compared with B6AC V1, it is more accurate and stable and also has some new features and functions.

V2 providers the options of setting the terminal voltage by the end user and connect it to PC for PC control along with firmware upgrade.

Along with that users could also use it as Lithium Battery Meter and Battery Internal Resistance Meter.

There are Automatic Charging Current Limit, Capacity Limit, Temperature Threshold and Processing Time Limit which makes the charger safer than V1.

Below are some of the technical specification,

  • Width: 258mm (10.16 inch)
  • High 6.0Amp Charge Rate
  • Balance Charges & Balance Discharges LiPo, LiON, LiFe (1S-6S cells)
  • Storage Mode to Preserve Battery Longevity
  • Charges NiMh, NiCd (1-15 cells)
  • AUTO charge mode for NiMh
  • Charges Lead-Acid (2V-20V)
  • Many Safety Features: Capacity Cutoff, Time Limit Cutoff, Temperature Cutoff
  • 10 Battery Memory Storage Settings
  • NiMh Cycling, Charge>Discharge, up to 5 times to refresh battery life
  • User definable charge rates from 0.1 amps to 6.0 Amps
  • 50 Watt max output. Charge Amperage auto adjusts depending on battery voltage.
  • Balance Port Built In (Balances 2S-6S Batteries)
  • 5 charging plugs


Tenergy tb6 Review

Tenergy tb6 was designed to balance charge NiMH/NiCd/Li-Ion/Li-Po/LiFe/SLA battery packs.Able to balance charge a 15S cell NiMH/NiCd pack or a 6S cell Li-Ion/Li-Po/LiFe pack with a maximum current of 5A.

It is able to store up to 5 different battery charging programs with LCD display charging indicator.

Along with HiTech, JST, Tamiya, Mini Tamiya, Deans, bare leads, and EC3 charging connectors.

It is designed to balance charge NiMH/NiCd/Li-Ion/Li-Po/LiFe/SLA battery packs.

Able to balance charge a 15S cell NiMH/NiCd pack or a 6S cell Li-Ion/Li-Po/LiFe pack with a maximum current of 5A, along with ability to store up to 10 different battery charging programs.

Below are some of the technical specification,

  • Model: TB-6AB
  •  Maximum Charge Current: 5A
  •  Maximum Discharge Current: 1A
  •  Indicators: LCD
  •  Compatible Chemistry: NiMH / NiCd / Li-Ion / Li-Po / LiFePO4 / SLA
  •  Input Voltage: AC: 100V-240V DC: 11V-18V
  •  Dimensions: 130mm x 85mm x 33mm (L x W x H)


HiTEc X4 AC Plus Review

Hitec has raised the bar on the X4 and equipped it with a built-in AC power supply.

The X4 AC Plus has four-port computer controlled capability with a built-in 22 amp power supply which can be powered by standard 120 volt AC household current.

Simple to use and utterly reliable, this compact charger with battery management and integral balancer features four identical and independent 50-watt power outputs, for a total output power of 200 watts.

Each port of the X4 AC Plus can handle up to a 6S Lithium pack, 15 NiCd/NiMH cells or 6-12 volt lead acid batteries.

Four individual balancing ports eliminate the need for a separate balancer when charging Lithium batteries.

Its twin fan cooling system with an internal sensor for controlling fan speed provides the utmost in efficiency and safety.

The X4 AC Plus can accept a variety of power inputs including the option of attaching it to a 12-volt car battery or a 11–15 volt (20 amp minimum) DC power supply.

The Hitec X4 AC Plus charger offers a complete charging solution for novice and expert RC enthusiasts alike.

The multi-tasking versatility of this new charger makes it a perfect fit for nitro and electric modelers, regardless of what you drive, hover, float or fly.

Below are some of the technical specification,

  •  AC Input Cable
  •  DC Input Cable
  •  Battery Clamps
  •  Alligator Clip Charging Connector
  •  Tamiya Charging Connector
  •  Receiver Battery Charging Connector
  •  (2) Bare Battery Changing Connectors
  •  TP/FP Type LiPo Balancer Board
  •  HP/PQ Type LiPo Balancer Board
  •  XH Type LiPo Balancer Board

 


Venom Pro Quad MultiCharger

Building on the success of our Pro Duo charger, the Venom Pro Quad 4-port, 7.0A Multi-Chemistry balance charger is the ultimate solution for hobbyists looking to charge multiple packs quickly and conveniently.

Featuring a monolithic vertical stance, this charger saves valuable bench space by providing four complete charging circuits.

Each with its own dedicated 100W integrated power supply in a footprint similar to most single output chargers.

Having four dedicated power supplies in one compact package means all four channels are able to receive 100W of power, ensuring you are not diluting your amp rate when charging two, three, or four packs simultaneously.

Discreetly located on the back of the charger are two powerful USB 2.3 Amp charging ports to conveniently power your USB devices.

Menu navigation is made easy with a five-button control interface and brightly backlit LCD screen.

All the most common battery chemistries are supported including: LiPo, LiHV, LiFe, Li-Ion, NiMH, NiCD, and Pb (lead acid) with a complete assortment of charge leads included in the box along with extra long balance leads to make safe charging in a LiPo sack effortless.

Below are some of the technical specification,

  • Included Charge Leads: Alligator, Deans, EC3, EC5, HXT 4, JST, Receiver (RX), Tamiya, XT60
  • LiPo/LiFe/Li-Ion Cell Count: 1-6 Cell
  • NiCd/NiMH Cell Count: 1-15 Cell
  • Pb Battery Voltage: 2-20V
  • Charge Current: 4 x 0.1 – 7.0A
  • Discharge Rate: 0.1 – 1.0A
  • Circuit Power: 4 x 100W
  • Current Drain Balancing: 300mAh per Cell
  • USB Output: 2 x 5V 2.3A USB 2.0
  • Input: DC 11.0V-18.0V – AC 100V-240V
  • Display Type: LCD
  • Length: 7 in (178mm)
  • Height: 9.25 in (235mm)
  • Width/Diameter: 4.25 in (108 mm)


Traxxas 2990 Battery/Charger Completer Pack Review

A must have  for serious RC enthusiast! Plug in a pair of Traxxas iD batteries and press Start. Traxxas’ exclusive iD technology does the rest by automatically configuring the charge settings for iD batteries.

The EZ-Peak Dual charges two batteries simultaneously at up to 50 watts (4 amps) each, or switch to High-Output mode to charge a single battery at the maximum 100 watt (8 amp) output.

The EZ-Peak Dual puts out a full 100 watts of power that equates to 8-amps of charging horsepower.

Traxxas iD LiPOs (4000mAh or higher) charge nearly 2x faster in High Output Mode.

The EZ-Peak Dual isn’t just for iD LiPOs; the Multi-Chemistry nature of the charger means LiPOs and NiMHs can be charged at the same time.

Advanced Mode opens the door for backwards compatibility. Traxxas iD-Equipped LiPo batteries provide the punch and power needed for your brushless vehicles to reach maximum speed.

The balance leads are integrated into the connector eliminating separate balance wires and connectors.

The Traxxas High-Current Connector allows current to flow freely with virtually zero voltage loss due to resistance.

Large, textured surfaces provide good grip and the reverse-polarity protection makes them virtually impossible to plug in backwards.

Beefy, gold-plated copper terminals with large, spring-loaded contact areas ensure a perfect connection every time.

Traxxas Power Cell LiPo packs use a unique construction that results in a firm, rugged, and compact pack that does not require a hard case.

This gives them greater capacity and allows the user to monitor the condition of the battery.

Unlike a hard-cased pack, if a Power Cell LiPo “”puffs”” or softens due to damage or abuse, the user can easily see the change in the pack.

Power Cell LiPo packs feature low resistance 12-gauge Maxx Cable wire, soldered directly to the LiPo cells to minimize resistance.

Traxxas 2872 LiPo batteries are only compatible with brushless vehicles; 1:10 scale or larger. They will not fit Rustler, Bandit, or Stampede-based vehicles.”

  • Two 5000 mAh 3-cell 25C 11.1v LiPo batteries and the powerful EZ-Peak Dual 8-amp charger.
  • Pack includes two #2872 11.1V 25C 3-cell LiPo batteries which fit most Traxxas brushless vehicles, 1/10 scale or larger.
  • EZ-Peak Dual charger instantly recognizes all Traxxas iD batteries to automatically program and optimize charger settings.
  • Powerful 100-watt output charges all of your Traxxas batteries from 5-8-cell NiMH batteries to 2S and 3S LiPo batteries.
  • Charger features an easy-to-use interface with charge progress indicator, audible alerts, and integrated cooling fan.

 


 

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