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Powerex Stealth Charger
By Bill Mills - Aug 2004

In 2003, Maha Energy became the first battery manufacturer to target a portion of their marketing toward paintball, recognizing it as a growing market sector with need for rechargeable batteries.

Their 9.6 volt NiMH Powerex rechargeable battery proved to outlast conventional 8.4 volt rechargeable NiMH batteries in a Warpig Ballistic Labs test and not suffer the charge fragility of similar NiCD batteries  (See this link for review and testing data.)  Their 10 bank charger seemed a good fit for paintball fields or teams using rechargeable batteries.  For the individual player however, its price tag was a bit hefty for an all at once purchase, even though it would represent long term cost savings.

Following feedback from the paintball community, Maha has produced the MH-C490F, what they call the “Stealth Charger.”  Instead of 10 charging banks, the Stealth Charger can charge up to 4 NiMH batteries at a time.  The reduction in size and circuitry cuts the retail cost of the charger down to less than half of the price of the 10 bank model.

Maha is selling the charger in a bundle with the charger, three batteries, an AC power adapter and an automobile 12 volt adapter.  This gives the Stealth Charger more versatility in that is can be used at home, at the field, or on the way there.

According to David Szatkowski, Maha’s director of marketing and sales the company considered bundling 4 batteries with the charger, but opted instead for three with the automobile power adapter, keeping within their target price, but giving the end user more flexibility in how they operate the charger.  For paintballers, three may be the magic number, with two batteries allocated for loader use and the third to drive a paintgun.

The Stealth Charger uses the same microprocessor controlled charging technology as its bigger brother – providing a rapid charge current of 70 to 90 milliAmps, followed by a 5mA trickle charge.  In use, there was no noticeable difference in charge rates between the two devices using Maha’s 9.6v batteries.  This held true when plugged into the wall in the office as well as when charging in a car.

The Powerex Stealth Charger paintball package combines the usefulness and cost savings of Maha’s 9.6 NiMH rechargeable battery system with convenience of AC or Automobile charging in a smaller unit making it more affordable.

 


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