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Oregon-River-Runner

Garmin 62 & 64 NIMH Battery Selections

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Does anyone know what the difference is between the "Traditional" and "Precharged" choices for NIMH rechargeable batteries? What do the different choices do or report to me?

 

I've been using the "Amazon Branded" rechargeable NIMH batteries recently in the Garmins and they seem to work well - I think they are lasting better than alkalines did.

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"Precharged" means they're of the newer low-self-discharge variety. They won't go flat sitting in the drawer, and they won't go flat on the display rack in the store - so finally they can be pre-charged at the factory and they'll still be charged when you take them home.

 

They're still NiMH chemistry, and charging is the same. Ultimate capacity is a bit lower than the older high-self-discharge cells, but who cares?

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"Traditional" and "Precharged" NiMH batteries have different voltage discharge curves. While not as pronounced as the difference between any NiMH battery and an alkaline battery, the discharge curve is still noticeably different.

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I've been running the Eneloop NiMH batteries in the 64S since day one. When I select "Pre-charged", I noticed that the battery level drops almost immediately, and seems to drop faster overall. And that's with freshly-charged, newer Eneloops coming off a conditioning charger at 100%. If I instead select "Traditional", the battery level gauge seems to be more forgiving with Eneloops. I know there are different discharge curves, but I'm not so sure that Garmin programmed them in correctly. The GPS battery gauge doesn't quite seem to match up to real life, despite the available menu choices.

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