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BAD Version 7.1 (HKJ test/review)
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#1 (permalink)      2/23/2015 4:24:32 PM US Central   quote/reply + tips
Ghost.of.Fast.Tech
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BAD Version 7.1 (HKJ test/review)
http://budgetlightforum.com/node/37872

TL;DR ?

• When charge is finished the charger will charge with 20mA (Very bad).

I will not recommend this charger anymore due to the over charge.


It never terminates charge. Over-charging is very dangerous. Batteries can vent hazardous gas (becomes hydrofluoric acid in your lungs) and burn, "vent with flame". In testing it charged a battery to 4.38 volt and would have continued if it was allowed to.
Also when disconnected from power it drains the battery at about 0.4mA. While 0.4mA is not a ton, it is certainly not ideal. Can't keep one long term as an emergency power supply.


FastTech's specs are entirely wrong. Especially this:

Over-charge (4.2V) and over-discharge (2.9V) protection, reverse polarity connection


This version 7.1 has No over-charge protection at all and the discharge cut off is 2.75 volt. Bit too low for many batteries.

• If you were considering buying this charger, don't. Wait until it is redesigned and has been independently tested.


Edited on 6/28/2015 at 4:05 PM. Reason:
I am Not a FastTech staff member.
#2 (permalink)      2/23/2015 5:05:18 PM US Central   quote/reply + tips
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yorgen
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Thanks for the info ghost, I ordered this unit on the 01/01/15, So I guess I have the older version.

FYI my cells come off the charger at 4.14V

To check if my charger doesn't terminate charge I would hook up my DMM in series and measure current from fully charged cell, with green charger light, I should have no current flow, correct?

I would say the 0.4ma discharge is in effect in my unit, as with a cell inserted there is a blue smd LED showing.
#3 (permalink)      2/23/2015 8:48:38 PM US Central   quote/reply + tips
JPBel
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The simplest way to know is to look if the charger have a charge controller IC or if it is only a transistor based charger.

Since the details specify a charge controller(TP4056), there are no reasons to make me beleive they don't.
But i don't see an 8 pins IC in FT pictures either, maybe it is on the other side of the board.

The output of the charger is not floating when there is no power on its input.

The input of the dc to dc converter is not floating either when there is nothing connected to its output.

If the led is on then it can potentially draw 1 to 20 miliamps depending on its current limiting resistor.

If the charger never terminate the charging process i would also question the battery's conditions, not just the charger.

2.75V in "in circuit" state is ok for 3.7 volts nominal lithium batteries.
It could even be 2.5V(minimum), in circuit, without problems.
#4 (permalink)      2/24/2015 6:24:55 PM US Central   quote/reply + tips
Ghost.of.Fast.Tech
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JRBel, as I said FastTech's specs are entirely wrong. The Current Version 7.1 does not use TP4056. Instead its a ETA6002 switching charger and a M3tek MT5032A boost converter for the 5v usb output. http://budgetlightforum.com/node/29576
And fasttech's pictures are of version 5.0. "ML102-V5.0" is marked in large print on the PCB in fastech's picture.

If the charger never terminate the charging process i would also question the battery's conditions, not just the charger.


Sorry but thats wrong. The charger controls termination. Also HKJ did not use old batteries. And even with old worn batteries, they may spend a long time in the CV phase but they will never over-charge in a proper good charger.



Yorgen, the version is marked on the circuit board. If you have a small phillips screwdriver its easy to open & put back together.
Connecting a DMM in series should allow you to measure current but its possible that just adding in the resistance of your DMM may cause a change.


Edited on 2/24/2015 at 7:00 PM. Reason:
I am Not a FastTech staff member.
#5 (permalink)      2/24/2015 7:22:42 PM US Central   quote/reply + tips
JPBel
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Normal charge termination is done when the current drop under ~3% of the CC current used to charge.

Voltage termination is a safe guard mecanisime.
While 4.35 can easily be reached by 3.7V nominal batteries, some 3.6V nominal will take much longer to get there and this can eventually become problem for them.

The main difference between a good charger and a cheap one is that the cheap one only rely on the voltage termination safe guard mecanisime to terminate the charging process.

With very used/old batteries, one, or both, of those 2 conditions might never get met.

Edited on 2/24/2015 at 7:27 PM. Reason:
#6 (permalink)      2/25/2015 6:53:38 PM US Central   quote/reply + tips
Ghost.of.Fast.Tech
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JPBel, again, in a proper charger even old worn batteries will never over-charge as has been seen in this version 7.1.

Did you read HKJ test/review? http://budgetlightforum.com/node/37872 This version 7.1 will not terminate. In testing it charged a battery to 4.38 volt and would have continued if it was allowed to. Others have now confirmed that their ML-102 v7.1 also never terminate. No old batteries were even used in the tests. Post over there. Your missing the point and will just confuse fasttech customers.

Yes, an old battery may never stop charging because its self discharge is high enough that its voltage never reaches 4.2 (and the charge current also doesn't drop). This is not what we are talking about in these tests.
I am Not a FastTech staff member.
#7 (permalink)      2/25/2015 7:01:33 PM US Central   quote/reply + tips
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onthescrews
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Informative review and discussion...thank you, saved $$!
2Br02B
#8 (permalink)      2/26/2015 6:45:45 AM US Central   quote/reply + tips
JPBel
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You were right Ghost.of.Fast.Tech, i mis-red your posts at first.

I fully agree with you, if it trickle charge pass 4.35V it is a big fail.
There are soo many of those out there that it will never be a good idea to leave lithium batteries charge unattended.
#9 (permalink)      2/27/2015 12:32:20 AM US Central   quote/reply + tips
Felix1220
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so what now? I received one with v7.1 2 weeks ago (Order A012293391)

mean I can throw it away, because I dont want to sit in front of this thing and watch it charging.
#10 (permalink)      2/27/2015 7:29:28 AM US Central   quote/reply + tips
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sirlance207
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Felix1220 I 2nd that I have one on the way. the only way I can watch it like that is in the car. Garbage?

Don't use it?
You'll get over it, or you'll die thinking about me. Either way I win!
#11 (permalink)      2/27/2015 8:27:38 AM US Central   quote/reply + tips
JPBel
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No need to stay near it and look at the battery for 1~2 hours.
Checking temperature at least a few minutes after begining, ~1/2, ~3/4 of charge and disconnect the charging power as soon as possible after the green led light up are enough.