itsasecret2 wrote:There are many places that an alkaline is superior; large camera flash units, for instance. I have both low self-discharge and high discharge capacity NiMH batteries. The low discharge fire slower strobes, the high discharges are often dead on their own before I get to use them.
The slightly lower voltage of the NiMH batts can be annoying for LED lamps requiring a threshold voltage to fire, and then they are though to be dead when they are just weak.
The recharging and cycling can be a pain when you are in a hurry and you have to check them when you need them. Alkalines are easy, when they are bad they go to the trash; the ones that are left are the good ones.
Sorry, sometimes being green does not get the job done. And I have been a dues paying member of a conservation club for over 30 years....
My wife and I have used Sanyo Elenoop low-discharge NiMH batteries for a few years with our 580EXII unit and remote triggers, and they've treated us very well (our large flashes are AC). They seem to last for an average of a few hundred flashes for a pack of four, so a few packs will easily get us through most weddings. The originals had a slightly slower recycle than optimal, but nothing that interfered with most shooting. The new XX line has no recycle issues at all. Nearly all reviews on B&H, Adorama, and other photo sites are all glowing, so I know I'm not the only one who likes them. We don't have LED lamps, so I can't comment on that.
Of course, it does require a little bit of prep work: we charge them all the night before. However, after that, it's easy to keep track of which ones are used and which ones are fresh, same as keeping track of which cards are full/empty.
We've probably spent $150+ on rechargeables, but even the ones we originally bought 4+ years ago are still getting the job done just fine. High cost upfront, but we're not throwing away 8-16 batteries a weekend, and I don't have to worry about whether a set I used late in a shoot has enough charge to start the next one.
I will admit I'm biased; I hate buying throwaway products like normal alkaline batteries, mainly for economic reasons, but some ecological. If there's ever a chance to buy a rechargeable unit (universal remote, Wii remote packs, etc.), I do; outside of that, I've yet to find a device that will not use the Eneloops, though they do exist (as evidenced by previous posters). The only non-rechargeable batteries I've purchased in the last seven years have been 9-volt units for my smoke detectors and garage door keypad.