More than words...

I'm assuming there is no such thing as Quality Control when testing batteries, is there? Heck, I think it's also a safe assumption that testing batteries doesn't exist, right? After all, if you test a battery to see how long it's going to live, then you've effectively killed it and cannot sell it. Or so I would think.

In my quest for the perfect battery to power up all my varied electronic devices, I decided to take the Rayovac Power Challenge.



I'm a lifelong user of Duracell and Energizer batteries because those names have always implied durability and long life. So if Rayovac, a brand I've come to mentally associate with "one step above generic," is going to make such a bold claim and offer up wonderfully colorful and highly scientific charts such as the one at right, why not give it a go?

Oh yeah, the price point was pretty good, too. I got 24 batteries for the price of 12 Duracells.

Perhaps that should've been the first sign.

I don't care what they say, but the Rayovacs I've used so far in my digital camera have been for crap. I put two of them in my Sony DSC-P92 last Thursday and, by Friday, they were failing to open the shutter. They kept reading that they were dead. And this was my first shoot using them. That can be more than a bit annoying.

But to rub salt on the open wound, they showed full battery life when I put my camera on viewer mode to offload the pictures to my computer. What the???

So I flipped it back to camera mode and, just like magic, they were dead again.

On Saturday, I put in a new deuce of Rayovacs since I still had so many left, and, so far, they're working fine. But I haven't turned the camera on today at all. Wouldn't surprise me if they, too, died.

And I still have yet to mention the fact that a pair of them lasted a meager week in my bluetooth mouse. Most batteries last a minimum of a month. If you go for those E-squared batteries, those tend to last for three to four months. But those cost an arm and a leg.

I'm getting frustrated here. I don't know what to buy.

Is there such a thing as a "good" battery in this day and age?

I want to find the creator of this challenge and pelt him with dead Double As. Can you imagine the headlines? "Rayovac founder mortally assaulted by dead batteries." That would make this worthwhile.

Previous Post

It was a very good year...

Jan 28
Wow, Dean Martin yesterday, Frank Sinatra today. Must be a Rat Pack kinda mood I'm in. You know how I said yesterday that maybe the return of my bowl was my karmic payback for my kitchen mishaps a few days...
Next Post

Mas tequila...

Jan 30
Sometimes I swear that Katie and I are of one mind. Last night, I was heading home from work. Since I couldn't get a hold of Katie on her cellphone, despite the fact she was supposed to get off work...


You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.


So you challegened them and they proved false to thier claim. Now what? NOW WHAT?


Too Funny. The image that came to mind was that of a CSI (Vegas or NY, not the Miami bunch of yahoos) tech matching up batteries with the impressions in that dude's melon. I have a set of rechargeables (Panasonic I think) I use in my flashes. They seem to hold up fairly well. Although the AAAs I got in the set only lasted a couple weeks in the wireless mouse. (where the alkaline ones would last 3-4 weeks.




I always go with Duracell.


I'm trying to think...the only batteries I use which aren't rechargeable are the ones which go in my TV remote...and I think they're still the ones that came in it, so I have no idea what brand they are.


Batteries are like light bulbs. You mean to tell me that in this day in age we can't demand decent batteries? Batteries that last longer than two weeks? Why are there not batteries that last years? Why are all of our light bulb options for bulbs that will last a couple months tops? Resale my friend. We'll always need both and as long as we're willing to buy, they'll keep making them shittier and shittier. We know that lightbulbs can last for ever, but they're too expensive to make and they don't give off enough light. Maybe that's the battery situation as well. I doubt it because it creates energy where light bulbs feed off of energy provided, but you see where my heads at. Just my two cents.


Jacquie, now we put the smack down on 'em!

g-man and Dave2, I use some rechargables as well. But since Christmas, I can't find my charger. I've gotta start looking. I've never thought to use rechargables in my bluetooth devices, though. That may change soon.

Dagny, I'm more a Duracell fan, too.

Sandra, it has always amazed me how long the factory batteries last in remotes. I wish I could get more. Sony especially.

Scott, I'm sure they can make super powered batteries and even do it cheaply. We need a Congressional inquiry into the matter. They waste enough money as it is, why not on this as well?


You are such an optimist or something! If batteries lasted long, you wouldn't have to keep buying them, and the battery companies wouldn't be able to keep selling them to you.

Rayovac batteries always seem dirty to me. Like covered in rust or something.


i'm all about the rechargables.


I didn't falter at all reading this until I saw the "Double As" and wondered why you didn't add another S. It sounded like "azz". You know? Like "you're AS cute as a battery"? Not making sense. I thought not. You did this to me.

Stupid as.


batteries really piss me off.


I don't know about quality control, but I've had a battery tester for years. Very handy. It doesn't drain your batt (or only infintessimally so), it shows how much juice is left in it.

If I had your rayovac's I'd totally be testing them to try to figure out what was going on.


We use rechargeables. Both the double and triple As last a pretty long time. I would say the double As don't fair quite as well, but we keep two full sets of each (16 total of each) because every single toy you buy for a child these days requires batteries. This means that we almost always have some charged, some in use and some charging. The initial outlay was costly (probably close to $100) but I know that in the long run, we've saved a bundle.


Tal, I think I should be a consumer advocate.

suze, I'm about to be.

Mocha, oh yeah, blame me. I see how it is.

sizzle, me too.

claire, I used to have one of those too. I wonder whatever happened to it. That was infinitely handy.

Allison, yeah, I may wind up putting in a bit more on the batteries. I've already got a charger so that's covered.


I have Rayovacs in my wireless mouse and they've been in there for two months now. Sure, the software keeps telling me my batteries are dead, but until that mouse pointer stops moving, I'm not replacing them.

For my camera, however, I use rechargeable batteries. You save money in the long run and they are better for the environment.


nicole, I may start using the rechargeables for everything except remote controls.


Battery technology is a crazy thing. Maybe you got a bad batch.

I used Duracells and Rayovacs in a camera and got 15 more pictures out of the Rayovacs. Both alkaline. And the reason I did such a crazy test was for my kid's science project. (flashlights were too boring to test!) She got a big kick out of making fun of the "trusted everywhere" campaign.

She even worked up a cost comparison on how much each picture was.

I also learned more than I needed to about battery tech.

Heavy Duty - goes in low drain devices. IE: remotes, smoke alarms, clocks.

Alkaline - best for toys, flashlights, mice

NiMH rechargeable - digital cameras, CD players, other high drain devices

Lithium - same as NiMH but lighter in weight

Like I said, more than I ever wanted to know.

Return the batteries.


Yappa, that's even more than I ever wanted to know and I'm sure you watered it down quite a bit for the sake of commenting. Believe me, I would return them, but they're long gone. Thanks for the comment.

The comments to this entry are closed.