Rechargeable 123A Cells and Charger, retail $42.50 (
Manufactured by (Unknown)
Last updated 10-13-04

I've only reviewed one rechargeable battery set here since starting this website almost five years ago, so please bear with me here.

Q: What do you think of when you hear the term "Lithium Ion"?

A: If you're like most people, you probably think of those fragile rechargeable batteries that blow up on you when you try to recharge them or short them out.

The RCR123A cells might make you think differently of these cells though.
The RCR123A cells are exactly the size of a disposable CR123A cell; they're designed to be used where you would normally use CR123A cells, such as in cameras and flashlights.

The cells should arrive to you already fully charged, or just needing 10 minutes or so on the charger just to be sure they're topped off.

The cells will fit directly in the charger; just be sure the polarity is correct. Be sure the (+) and (-) signs embossed in the charging cradle are aligned with the (+) and (-) signs on the battery. Insert one of the cells into the charger, plug the small end of the cord on the wall wart transformer, and plug the wall wart itself into a standard (United States) 110-120VAC outlet. A red light on the charging cradle should then come on and let you know the battery is being charged. After approximately three hours (assuming the batteries were fully discharged), the red light on the charging cradle should turn green. You can then unplug the charging cradle, remove the battery, and install it in whatever they came out of or charge the second one if necessary.

This is a rechargeable battery set, not a flashlight. So I won't try to flush them, run over them with a 400lb electric wheelchair, slam them into a concrete block, let the cat go to the bathroom on them, or perform any other indecency on them that a flashlight might have to go through.

The individual cells have a circuit inside them that prevents the cell from becoming overcharged or overdischarged. I don't know what this circuit consists of, but since it is a safety device, I'd probably better not monkey around with it.

These cells have a self-discharge rate of approximately 2% per month. So if the device you put them in just sits unused for a year or so, you may not get the full capacity of the cells. The solution here is simple: just pop them in the charger every few months (once every four months is a good place to start) and they'll be good as new again.

I installed one in an Arc4+, and it did not work. Tried the other; same thing. So I tried both cells in a SureFire L5 Digital Lumamax, and they seem to work fine in it. The intensity reading is 1,340,000mcd with disposable CR123A cells, and 1,300,000mcd with these rechargeable CR123A cells. So there really isn't a whole lot of difference there.

Open circuit voltage after charging and with less than one minute total use in a SureFire L5 was measured at 3.899 volts on one cell, and 3.960 volts on the other.

Photograph of one of the cells themselves.

Test units (two cells), charging cradle, and wall wart transformer were provided by Jon Burlinson ("JonSidneyB" on Candlepower Forums) and received on 10-13-04.
I've only reviewed one rechargeable battery set here, so please bear with me.

UPDATE: 00-00-00



    MANUFACTURER: Unknown - possibly Pila
    PRODUCT TYPE: Rechargeable Li:ION CR123A cells + charger
    No. OF LAMPS: N/A
    BEZEL: N/A


    Star Rating

Rechargeable CR123A battery set and charger *

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