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XTAR VP2, VP4 Plus Dragon, VC4, VC2 Plus, SV2, ANT MC-1 Plus, MC6; NiteCore i4 V2, D4 Chargers

Discussion in 'Flashlights & Other Illumination Devices' started by david57strat, May 11, 2014.

  1. david57strat

    david57strat EDC Junkie!!!

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    I have two NiteCore i4 V2 chargers, and (just recently) picked up an XTAR VP2. No complaints with the i4s, other than the somewhat stiff spring clips, and the fact that they don't always comfortably accommodate the sometimes larger protected 18650 batteries (lengthwise).

    I mainly bought the VP2 because I wanted something that could also charge LiFePO4 batteries (which I am now using in all most of my CR123 lights, in place of the dreaded primaries), and so I could easily charge 26650 batteries, as well.

    The VP2 is amazing. I'm loving the select-able charge rate, the metering, and the super smooth feel of the spring clips.

    I use all three chargers simultaneously, when I'm doing a 18650 run of charging, so I'm able to charge ten batteries at a time (very handy - really speeds things up).

    [​IMG]

    How are you folks' experiences with the new VP2 charger?

    Now, they just need to come up with a VP4, or a VP 8, to charge 4, or 8 batteries, simultaneously :) :p


    Edit - I just took some Nyogel 760G lubricant (which I use for all my flashlight threading) and applied some to a cotton swab, running that along the spring clip channels, and now the spring action on the i4 chargers is even smoother than the nearly brand-new VP2. Wow! That was my main pet peeve about the i4 chargers (aside from not easily fitting some of the longer 18650 protected batteries). Now - smoothness problem, solved.

    I still love my VP2, though :).
     
    Last edited by david57strat, Nov 21, 2016
  2. moostapha

    moostapha Loaded Pockets

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    I've had one for a while (maybe it was a previous version, vp1 sounds familiar, still 2 bays and the same features). Zero complaints.

    I got it for vaping batteries, which stresses them s lot more than lights....my cloud chasing so pulls ~12A (the batteries I use can take it), and it hadn't done any of the dumb things that cheap chargers can do to run batteries.

    sent from a device without a real keyboard, sorry for things that don't make sense.
     
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  3. kbuzbee

    kbuzbee Loaded Pockets

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    Just got my VP2 Saturday. Loving it so far. My only other charger is a Fenix 2 bay 18650 charger, which is nice enough for what I needed it for. Now I have 16340s and 18350s and I'm looking at getting some 14500s and 10440s so it's nice to have the flexibility. May even move into LifePo4s and other things at some point.

    The setting flexibility. The battery support. The display. This is, from what I can tell, a terrific charger. (Yeah, 4 bays might be nice ;) )

    Ken
     
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  4. david57strat

    david57strat EDC Junkie!!!

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    I noticed that NiteCore have come up with a D4 smart charger, but they haven't yet released it. I'm anxious to try it out. The only complaint I would have about it (as with the i4 chargers I'm using), as compared to the new VP2 charger, is the lower charge current (750 mAh x 2, or 375 x 4) on the i4, where the maximum charging current of 1 Amp/hr is available on VP2 (and it's manually adjustable). Aside from that, they've worked beautifully, and the new metering system and added LiFePO4 capabilities of the new D4 put it on par with the VP2, and at a significantly lower price point - with twice the charging bays.
     
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  5. EricJS

    EricJS Empty Pockets

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    Great feedback on the Xtar VP2. I've considered purchasing one. Thanks for the recommendation on the i4 spring clip improvement, too.
     
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  6. david57strat

    david57strat EDC Junkie!!!

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    Just ordered a NiteCore D2 Charger from Battery Junction. Can't wait to receive it and put its through its paces against the VP2. Since I've had such great experiences with the i4s, I'll probably be picking up the D4, fairly soon.

    I still love the VP2, though. It's superb; but they still need to come out with a 4-bay version of the VP2 :|

    Edit - 07-09-14 - I ended up canceling the order for the D2, since they sent me an email, telling me that delivery was going to be delayed because their stock hadn't yet come in - which, in retrospect, was kind of a relief, since I really wanted to get the 4-bay unit, after all. Now I have the D4, and just ordered a second one :).

    I've been using the D4 very heavily, and I have to say, it is really nice. They greatly improved the travel of the spring clips (much smoother. They don't get stuck in the channels at all), and the added auto-sensing circuitry and backlit display really provide a lot of information that is very useful (the type of battery being charged in each slot, the time lapsed for each slot, and the current voltage. You can also change battery type for each slot (charge a couple of standard 18650s in slots 1 and 3, and maybe a LifePO4 in 2, and a NiMh in 4, and the charger works independently on each channel, without a hiccup. Very sweet. The VP2 can adjust for LifePO4s, but you have to charge the same thing in both slots. Also, the VP2 will not charge NiMh batteries, so it's not as chameleon-esque as the D4.

    I only have one complaint about the new D4 charger (other than the fact that they didn't beef up the charging current from that of the i4 V2 - which isn't the end of the world), and that is the display, itself. It's not as bright as that of the VP-2, you have to be very close to right on top of the charger to thoroughly read it easily, whereas the VP-2 can be easily seen, from many different viewing angles. But again - that's a minor complaint. Aside from that, it uses a standard plug (No Wall Wart!! :). XTAR - take note), and appears to be very nicely built. I love it!

    The again, only the VP-2 will accommodate my slightly longer 18650 protected batteries. Both the i4 and the D4 only get confused, and fail to sense the battery correctly. The VP2 was also built to charge 3.8V lithium ions (terminating the charge at 4.35 Volts. I have yet to own any of these, but like the idea that the VP2 is already geared up to accommodate this new battery.

    Anyway, I'm a happy camper - with both models (and even with my old i4 V2 chargers). I'll gladly post some new pictures, when the second D4 arrives, and when I have "the light" (I hate using a flash lol).
     
    Last edited by david57strat, Jul 9, 2014
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  7. david57strat

    david57strat EDC Junkie!!!

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    It's difficult to take a decent picture with my iPhone; but I'm too lazy to use a real camera lol.

    Here is the current line-up of chargers (The D4s are the latest acquisitions, and are working very nicely :)

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    Notice how the VP-2's display is amazingly easy to read? I really like this. I also like the selectable charge rates (and the higher charger rate that this one has, as opposed to the D4s, or the i4 V2s. The D4 displays a lot more useful information, though. I'm still torn.

    [​IMG]
    Also, the VP-2 has wider battery wells, so you can easily fit two 26650 batteries side-by-side. That's a nice touch.

    When will XTAR come up with a 4-bank version of their VP-2, that actually incorporates all of the useful bonus features found in the VP2?
     
    Last edited by david57strat, Sep 23, 2014
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  8. david57strat

    david57strat EDC Junkie!!!

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    After a little over a month of owning the second D4 charger, I've noticed that, when I put some AA NiMh batteries in it, the readout goes nuts (displays 1.7 volts, etc.), and the numbers kind of jump around (read unstably), then the unit shuts off altogether. At first, I thought this was a problem with the batteries. I tried charging them in the original charger that I bought from this particular seller (Another identical D4), as well, just a week or two prior. No problems, whatsoever.

    I tried charging 18650 batteries in the faulty charger -- no apparent problems with the display, or the unit shutting off prematurely. Now, even charging just 18650 lithium ion batteries, bank 1 shuts off (doesn't display full, or anything else..it literally shuts off), while the other charging slots look okay. Things seem to be deteriorating.

    I've contacted the eBay seller, to see what can be done, in spite of the fact that I'm beyond the thirty day limit. They are an authorized NiteCore dealer. I'm keeping my fingers crossed. I'd happily buy another one from them, if I can obtain the refund for this faulty one, first.

    As I said, their other D4 unit is flawless, and I've been using NiteCore chargers for over two years, now - never a problem, until now...

    Will provide an update when I hear something back.

    Edit - I've also tried charging new Duraloops in the faulty charger - same problem; so it's definitely not the batteries.
     
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  9. Flash Owl

    Flash Owl Loaded Pockets

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    thanks for the updates david.
    i recently purchased a Xtar VP2 for my sister. she be draining those 18650 with her vaporizer. we have been using the VP2 for about 2-3 weeks now.
    im really satisfied with the VP2. we both noticed it can charge really fast. and the volt-meter display comes in handy.
    so far, no complaints.

    before deciding on the Xtar VP2. i did some research about the nitecore, thurnite, Xtar, and fenix chargers.
    i read that the NIMH charging capabilities of each brand, which available, was not favorable.
    i took it as "nimh being optional, but not really what the chargers were meant for. seems like more for marketing purposes than anything else.
     
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  10. david57strat

    david57strat EDC Junkie!!!

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    I never had any issues with the previous version (NiteCore i4 V2) distinguishing between lithium ion and NiMh batteries (mainly AAs), or terminating properly. That's why I was so interested in purchasing the new D4 version of the chargers; and their ability to also properly charge LiFePO4 batteries. The monitoring of each channel seemed like a very handy feature to have, as well.

    As it ends up, the eBay seller promptly shipped me a replacement D4, and issued a return label for the defective one, so I could return it, free of charge. Very professional and courteous. I would definitely buy more of these chargers.

    As for the XTAR VP2 - also an excellent charger - just not enough charging bays lol. The selectable amperage is an extremely nice touch, too :)
     
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  11. david57strat

    david57strat EDC Junkie!!!

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    I just received am email this morning, from XTAR Direct, advising that they are releasing the new VP4, and for only forty bucks! Yesssss! Must pick one up.

    At long last.
     
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  12. survivaleverydaycarry

    survivaleverydaycarry Loaded Pockets

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    Subbed. Great thread David. Thanks for your replies in the Battery Issues thread. I will ask more questions here as they come up about the Nitecore and XTAR chargers, but I am pretty much sold on the D4. Thanks again.
     
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  13. Gwac110
    • The Omnia Paratus

    Gwac110 EDC Junkie!!!

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    Pic of my D4 delivered today and put straight to use!
    [​IMG]
     
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  14. david57strat

    david57strat EDC Junkie!!!

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    Any time. I'm happy to answer any questions that I can, and am always to thankful to read what others have to say about items I may be interested in buying.
     
  15. sgt253

    sgt253 Loaded Pockets

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    Ordered a VP2 from XTAR Direct in California on Saturday. In my mailbox today, Monday! Love this charger. Quality piece. Batteries in it right now! Highly recommended!
     
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  16. david57strat

    david57strat EDC Junkie!!!

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    Congratulations on your new purchase, sgt253!
     
    Last edited by david57strat, Sep 16, 2014
  17. david57strat

    david57strat EDC Junkie!!!

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    In looking at the VP4 specifications, it appears that they're not offering the following features that can be found in the VP2:

    1. The three-way switch on the back of the unit, that allows for charging LiFePO4 batteries (3.2V setting), ordinary 18650 batteries (3.6V setting), and the newer batteries that can be charged to 4.35 Volts (3.8 Volt setting). I'm fairly sure the output of the newer has a set level, terminating at 4.2 volts - which would mean that it's unsuitable for charging LiFePO4 batteries, or the 4.35 volt batteries. Bummer.
    2. I don't think they're including the USB port on the back, which (on the VP2) can be used as a charging port, making the VP2 capable of charging another USB-chargeable device (a phone, etc.) by inserting a battery into one of the wells of the charger. This disables the charger from charging any batteries in the wells, but makes whatever battery you put into it, the power source for your external device that needs charging. Could be very handy, on the road, in a pinch.
    3. Edit 09-23-14 - Looks like the VP4 will not charge all four channels at 1 Amp/hour, but at 500 MaH, which is greatly disappointing. If you need the high speed, you may want to buy a pair of VP2 chargers.
    I paid 50 bucks, plus tax, for the VP2, and now it's been dropped to $35.00. Good job, XTAR. I was thrilled to see the new, lower (40 dollar) price on the VP4; but I had really hoped that the VP4 would remain exactly the same (feature-wise) as the VP2, with the exception of the additional two charging slots. Doesn't look like it :-(.

    I hope I'm wrong.
     
    Last edited by david57strat, Sep 23, 2014
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  18. Tixx

    Tixx Loaded Pockets

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    Just ordered the Xtar VP2
     
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  19. sgt253

    sgt253 Loaded Pockets

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    Bummed out about VP4 but ecstatic about VP2! I have been using it enthusiastically. Really enjoy the features and the price. Dynamite fast shipping for flat $5.00 rate. Could not be more pleased.
     
  20. hal_chase
    • GITD Manix 2XL Owner
    • The Omnia Paratus

    hal_chase EDC Junkie!!!!!

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    @ Gwac110 sent me here and I'm so greatful for all the info you have posted, I too want to be able to charge heaps of batteries at the same time.

    Currently I play swopsies with an Xtar VP1 and it takes me all day (or longer) to charge a pile of protected 18650's and I was looking at the Nitecore...but now I'm not so sure, particularly now you have made me aware of a VP4 :spin:

    My requirements are 18650 protected (button top and flat top), RCR123 and 18350

    P.S I want a Charging Bank like your first pic....even SWMBO is onside with that idea :D



     
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