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145 of 147 people found the following review helpful
The Duracell Mobile Charger (CEF23) is an extremely versatile charger. It actually has two operating modes, as selected by the MODE button:

1. As an AA/AAA NiMH battery charger, or
2. As an USB charger for USB-powered devices.

In battery-charger mode, the unit is a smart charger that accepts 1-4 AA/AAA cells in any combinations. The charger can be powered by either 100-240V universal AC input, or 12V DC input. This means you can also operate it from your vehicle's cigarette lighter adapter. Note that the car adapter is included in the CEF23DX4N, but not in the CEF23DX2.

The charging current is 550mA for each AA/AAA cell. So it takes about 4 hours to full charge up the included 2000mAh low-self-discharge cells (which are the Duracell-equivalent of Sanyo eneloop). I consider this a good compromise between shorter charging time and longer battery lifespan. Once charging is done, the current is reduced to 25mA (actually 0-50mA pulsed at 50% duty cycle) in trickle charge mode.

One really nice feature of this charger is that it has four individual battery status indicator lights. The status light for each cell turns RED when charging, GREEN when the cell is fully charged. It will even blink if you accidentally inserted an alkaline cell.

In USB charger mode, the unit generates a regulated 5-volt supply at its USB socket. You can then connect an USB-powered device (such as IPOD charger) to this unit. Input power for this USB charger can be from one of the following sources:
1. From 100-240V universal AC input,
2. From 12V DC input (car adapter), or
3. From four AA/AAA NiMH cells in the battery compartment.

The third way is the most interesting, because in case of emergency, you can even use 4 alkaline cells to power this USB charger, in order to charge up your cell phone's battery.

I must say that this charger is really well designed. It is a great bargain even if all you need is a simple battery charger. The USB charger mode is just an extra bonus.

[Update on Oct 7, 2010]:
Duracell has discontinued the excellent CEF23 charger (at least in the US) last year. So prices for the remaining inventory have skyrocketed. The replacement product (Duracell Go Mobile Charger) only charges in pairs, and does not contain an USB charger.
- If you just need an inexpensive 2-cell charger that can handle individual cell, consider the Sanyo eneloop MDR02.
- If you need a good 4-cell charger that can operate from 12V cigarette lighter adapter, consider the Targus LCD2700 with LCD Display
- If you need an advanced charger that can operate from 12V CLA, consider the La Crosse Technology BC500
- If you need a good 4-cell charger that can operate from 12V CLA _and_ can power an USB port using internal batteries... Sorry! Your best hope is to look for an international version of CEF23, such as the CEF23AU (AU=Australia).

[Update on Dec 1, 2010]
Just in case anyone is still interested in this charger: I recently found out that its USB port is capable of supplying 1000mA output current - even though the spec says 500mA only. I discovered this by accident when using it as a portable recharger for my Archos 5 500 GB Internet Tablet.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
Thanks to NLee's excellent review, I was turned on to Duracell's Mobile Chargers. Yes, the included batteries are hybrids similar Sanyo's Eneloop. I own both and can't perceive much difference. The recharger is an excellent value, as versatile as described.

Definitely go with Duracell Mobile Chargers if versatility is important.

Unfortunately Amazon's description doesn't do this product justice. This is a common problem and I'm sure sales suffer. I think Amazon and the product's Product Manager share blame.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on October 13, 2008
This charger is working like a champ.Before buying this product I read all the customer reviews from Amazon web site and also from other sites then decided to go with this charger.

It comes with four individual battery status indicator lights. The status light for each cell turns RED when charging and GREEN when the cell is fully charged.

I bought Eneloop charger almost 5 months back but it worked only once after that it died.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on June 2, 2009
I am off to Peru for a 4 day trek to Machu Picchu. My needs were very specific:

1. Need a device to power my IPHONE 3G for 4 days with no access to an outlet.
2. Need a device that supports 110-240v for international compatibility once i'm back in the hotel.

This unit fits the bill perfectly, and for much less than proprietary IPHONE chargers.

Added bonus:
1. Supports readily availble AA batteries as power.
2. Will serve double duty as a charger for my Digital Camera batteries.
3. AA and AAA support so it will power my headlamp.
4. Utilizes battery or outlet to power USB charging.
5. Will charge/power almost any usb compatible device.
This all-in-one device has all the features I need.

To be fair, the downsides are:
1. It's bigger than dedicated battery extenders.
2. It comes with 2 batteries but they only sell 4packs in the store so I have a total of 6 batteries and would have preferred 8.(1 full replacement set)
3. USB charger required all charging slots contain batteries to function.
4. Chemical smell.
5. Slower charge time vs. quick charger.

I highly recommend this unit to anyone who has the need to power/recharge USB gadgets on the go.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
The Duracell CEF23 is a small battery charger that handles up to four AA or AAA NiMH cells individually. Each slot is equipped with its own LED which glows red when you insert the cell and turns green once it is fully charged, which can take several hours depending on its capacity. Cells are monitored individually which prevents overcharging and battery damage.

The CEF23 is small and self contained. It does not require cords or a power adapter, instead you will find fold-out blades on the back which let you plug it directly into the wall. This is a very convenient design which makes it perfect for travel.

While we're on the topic, the best feature of this charger is that it doubles as a USB power source, an invaluable feature for road warriors whose Blackberry or iPod always runs out of juice at the most inopportune moment. With the CEF23, not a problem: even if you forgot to charge your NiMH batteries before leaving, just purchase a set of alkaline batteries at the airport and you can use it to recharge your USB-compatible device.
The CEF23 would be a great purchase for its USB power capability alone. Getting a very capable charger on top is an added bonus!

Very highly recommended.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on January 22, 2009
I wanted a smart charger that could charge less than a full batch of batteries and wouldn't overcharge batteries that were at different charge levels. This one fits the bill, and it's small enough that you can take it with you on trips (if that's important to you).

I use it with Sanyo Eneloop batteries, which I highly recommend.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on December 13, 2008
Good product, slow charge time. I'm used to the 15 minute charge time of my other chargers, but I guess this unit has to slow charge because of the long life batteries. Even your 15 minute batteries will take hours in this charger.

But the main reason I bought this was to see if it worked with the iPhone, and it does! Take your USB iPhone or iPod cable and plug it into the USB plug and the other end to your iPhone and your good to go! It will charge your iPhone at least 2 or 3 times on one set of (4) batteries. For us iPhone users who don't have the option of having a spare battery, this comes in very handy.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on May 13, 2010
This charger charges AA's just fine. All my AAA, however, heat up during charging quite a bit... Needless to say, I stopped using this charger for charging AAA... only AA's.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon March 18, 2009
Ok, it charges batteries, removable plug, auto volt for world use, automatically powers off when batteries are fully charged, so on.

Additionally, it can be used to power up or even charge your USB devices. Yes! it functions like an external battery pack for your USB devices. I was really suprised when I read this feature in its little instructional paper. The feature wasn't mentioned in the product details (or I didn't notice it when i bought this) and I didn't read any reviews about it. So I tested my drained PSP with this charger. I put in 4 AA battery, pressed and held the button until the USB led light turned on, plugged in the USB cable to my PSP...... charger indicator light in PSP lit to orange (meaning unit is charging) and I was able to power up my PSP as well!!!

Note though that this feature will only work for USB devices using 6 volts and below. 4 AA batteries are equal to 6 volts =D.

Must buy for your AA/AAA battery powered devices and even USB devices ;).

Oh yeah, it also charges USB devices directly from an outlet hehe.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on April 17, 2009
I have a LaCrosse BC-900 and bought this to hoping to get a smaller smart charger to travel with. However, it's only slightly smaller in size and weight. The batteries that came with it worked fine as 'pre-charged' batteries; I won't quibble about a few percent max storage between brands (I have the Kodak brand as well). However, no one warned about the intense chemical smell upon opening the package. It would be a disaster packing it with your clothing on travel, and having them smell like strong mothballs in a meeting. After a few weeks of opening the package, it still reeks. This is the first electronics I have ever had that smells like that.
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