Panasonic Eneloop review

Panasonic Eneloop rechargeable AA and AAA batteries give you the power you need, whenever you need it.

Panasonic Eneloop
(Image: © Matthew Richards)

Digital Camera World Verdict

Rechargeable batteries have had a checkered history. They’ve long been cost-effective and convenient in some ways, less so in others. Unlike previous rechargeable batteries, Eneloop cells retain their charge over many months and even years, so they’re always ready to use whenever you need them. They’re long-lasting too, both in terms of capacity and overall lifetime. Eneloop batteries aren’t the cheapest around but, at Digital Camera World, we’ve been using them for years and love their 100% reliability and rock-solid performance. When we need to know we can completely trust a set of batteries for an important shoot, Eneloop is the brand we reach for.

Pros

  • +

    Holds charge almost indefinitely

  • +

    Can be recharged up to 2100 times

  • +

    Ready to use straight out of the box

Cons

  • -

    Not the greatest capacity

  • -

    Pricier than some competitors

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Eneloop batteries have been around since 2005, although they were originally made by Sanyo and later acquired by Panasonic in 2009. They were somewhat revolutionary at the time, solving a number of perennial problems suffered by rechargeable batteries. Older NiCad (Nickel Cadmium) rechargeable batteries suffered from a ‘memory effect’, so you’d have to discharge them completely before recharging them to retain their full capacity. Specialist battery chargers could do this, but you’d be in for a long wait.

Newer NiMH batteries had virtually no memory effect but tended to self-discharge over a few weeks, even when sitting in a drawer doing nothing. By the time you came to use them, they’d often have very little charge remaining or even be completely flat.

(Image credit: Matthew Richards)

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Matthew Richards

Matthew Richards is a photographer and journalist who has spent years using and reviewing all manner of photo gear. He is Digital Camera World's principal lens reviewer – and has tested more primes and zooms than most people have had hot dinners! 


His expertise with equipment doesn’t end there, though. He is also an encyclopedia  when it comes to all manner of cameras, camera holsters and bags, flashguns, tripods and heads, printers, papers and inks, and just about anything imaging-related. 


In an earlier life he was a broadcast engineer at the BBC, as well as a former editor of PC Guide.