REVIEW: Teknocreation’s InCharge for Xbox 360

image I’m really surprised that more hoopla isn’t made of these things.  One day WOOT.com had a sale on InCharge Xbox 360 controller battery chargers, each with 2 batteries, so I bought 3 units, not expecting much.  I figured, “Everyone needs extra batteries, right?”

What I got was a big surprise.

THE DIFFERENCE IN BATTERY TECHNOLOGIES
Okay, forget for a moment that these are simply batteries for your Xbox 360 controllers.  These have been nothing short of a godsend over the past couple days.  I’m really surprised that no one else is talking about how glorious these batteries & chargers are.  There are so many benefits to InCharge that make it completely worth picking up relative to normal Xbox 360 batteries & chargers.

  1. LIGHTER WEIGHT
    These batteries are half the weight of the official Xbox 360 controller batteries.  This really does make a difference in hand/game fatigue and I was pleasantly surprised and how nice and light the Xbox 360 controllers are with the InCharge batteries on them.
  2. image LITHIUM POLYMER BATTERIES = BETTER
    This is a biggest difference:  The batteries are not made of the same Nickel Metal Hydride material that the official Xbox 360 batteries are made of.  They’re made up of Lithium Polymer which, if you know your battery technology, is the current state of the art in battery technology today.  In fact, the much older Nickel Metal Hydride is ancient and rarely used in anything other than the most basic consumer electronics whereas Lithium Polymer (and it’s predecessor, Lithium Ion) is what is used in laptops and PDAs today because of two properties:
    1. LACK OF MEMORY EFFECT:  LiPoly has relatively little memory effect i.e. loss of energy retention capability.  Unlike Nickel Metal Hydride, you do not need to fully drain and fully recharge the battery to keep it from losing energy capacity.  Because of their predisposition to capacity loss, NiMH batteries always live dramatically shorter lives compared to LiPoly because of this memory effect issue.
    2. ENERGY CAPACITY:  LiPoly retains greater amounts of energy per weight than NiMH.  This is the reason why InCharge batteries can weigh substantially less (50% less!) than the NiMH batteries and still maintain 25 hour charges on them.
  3. INDUCTION-BASED CHARGING
    This is really cool.  There’s no cords or connectors to plug into the batteries or the controllers to charge these batteries.  You simply place them on the charger and through magnetic induction, the InCharge batteries begin to charge.  This also mean that the batteries can still be connected to the controller and you can place the entire controller on the charger and the battery will begin charging without connecting anything to it.

I gotta say, I have virtually no complaints about these things.  The only thing that has bugged me is that when a battery is charged, there is a green LED light that constantly blinks incessantly.  I literally put tape over the LED, it got so annoying to look at.

Other than that, I got them at a steal for $14.99 on Woot, so it’s REALLY hard to complain about the price for certain, considering they normally retail for $34.99 and a couple extra batteries typically cost more than that alone without the charger.  However despite the fact that they aren’t “officially approved & licensed” Xbox 360 products, if you ever want new batteries for your Xbox 360 controllers, I’d encourage you to consider the InCharge.  These things are really convenient compared to the official Xbox 360 batteries and charging accessories.

Here’s one place where you can find these batteries & chargers:

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