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  1. #1
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    Default AA battery pack for charging phone?

    Hi;
    I have a Li-ion battery charger for my android phone, but or course, it needs charging after using it to recharge the phone several times. That's fine for a week-long hike, but I am planning a month long hike on the A.T. in the fall, so I'm looking for a pack that uses AA cells. I thought about solar, but the added weight and length of time it takes to fully recharge a phone makes it a poor choice. Does anyone have any recommendations?

    Thanks

    Arden

  2. #2

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    I just dont use mine enough that its a problem. I keep it off. Turn on when needed to send text or try to check weather.
    I simply recharge in town.
    When you can get 10 hrs of use out of a smartphone with average battery life.
    math says its really shouldnt be a problem unless leave phone on

    When I carried a non-smart phone, it would last 3-4 weeks just sending text in evening.

    but, to your question, I think the lower energy density of AA batteries will be increased weight over an appropriately sized lithium ion that you charge up in town.
    Whether sized for a week, two weeks, etc, the lithium ion will still be lighter.

    Are you never going to town, or a reason cant charge the battery pack there?

  3. #3

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    Get one of the anker quick charge models. Not necessarily quick charge output, but the input. You can charge the battery pack in less than an hour, and sometimes way less than that. A lot cheaper and lighter than AA.

  4. #4
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    My experience is they are unreliable and hold very little power. I think that was for a 2 AA emergency charger, a 4 battery one may be better.

    However a small Li-ion pack is much better for a thru, getting a electric outlet to recharge (or USB computer port), is far easier, more universal, and cheaper then buying AA's.

  5. #5
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    Thanks guys; So I guess I'll just stick with my Aibocn 5,000mAh Li-ion pack. It charges pretty fast. I don't know how many times I will go to town, but I don't think I can carry more than 5 days food anyway. Where do you normally go to recharge your phone? Internet cafe, other coffee shop? Library? I suppose that some of the hiker-friendly shops will allow one to plug in a phone while shopping.

    Edit: Oh, yea. Forgot to mention - I like to listen to audiobooks on my phone at night. I guess I'll have to limit that to when I know I can get to recharge it within a day or two.
    Last edited by Arden; 07-31-2016 at 19:14.

  6. #6

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    If you are using the phone heavily, a 10,000 or even 20,000 mAh pack is not much heavier, and would allow you to possibly even skip towns without recharging.

    As for where to charge, basically anywhere with a plug if you are going to be there for a while. Many fast food places have outlets for guests now. If it is not obviously for your use, ask first though.

  7. #7

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    You get really good at spotting hidden electrical outlets, like behind vending machines and the sides of buildings. Asking is often a good ploy. Business along the trail are resigned to the fact everyone wants a recharge.

    So long as you keep the phone in airplane mode the battery will last a while. Just playing audio doesn't use much juice. I could get 4-5 days out of my cheap phone with typical daily use of 5-6 hours of music, a few photos and some off line journaling. Your most reliable connection to the outside world is during the day while your up high on a ridge, so do any on air stuff like FB or blog posts, checking weather and text messages then and go back to airplane mode when your done.

    I would use my external battery pack (a 4400 mah one) to fully charge the phone before I got into town and just recharge the battery pack. That way you never have to leave your phone unattended, although the risk of doing so is minimal or non-existent.
    The AT - It has it's ups and downs...

  8. #8
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    Thanks for the advice guys;
    I'm hoping to do a 300 mile section from Hanover NH to Pawling NY (both accessible by train). I'm figuring 30 days, give or take. There will be ample opportunities to go into town for supplies, a good meal, perhaps lodging, and yes - a recharge. For my first long section, I think it's a pretty good choice. I've been in the area to ski, and did a few day hikes on the A.T. in the Killington area.
    I will look into a li-ion pack with a higher capacity, but I have to watch my budget.
    One of the reasons I am looking to do the 30 - day trek is what slo-go'in said. I really need to get comfortable with life on the trail, and what to look for in town. I think what I really need most help with is food, but that's a subject for another section of the forum

  9. #9
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    A single AA battery just won't get you very far. The commercial battery packs use Li-Ion batteries with a higher energy density. Use airplane mode, like Slo says. A 4500 mAh external pack is about 5 oz. or so. Works for me.

  10. #10

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    this is a good combination of capacity and weight. it has the IQ charging that "reads" your device and charges at fastest possible rate and also compensates for crappy cables with heavy resistance. 3.5 charges for a 6s or S6 and weighs 6oz. $22 shipped -- https://www.amazon.com/Anker-PowerCo...&tag=ianker-20

    I have the heavier (8.6oz) 13000 with two charging ports that has higher capacity and output for an ipad or tablet but if buying again, I would get the one above...

  11. #11

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    If you are still interested in using AA batteries, the Goal Zero Guide 10 charger can use either 4 AA or AAA batteries to charge a phone or other USB device. You can recharge the batteries with a solar panel or plug into a USB, or just swap them out with new batteries.
    Go afield with a good attitude, with respect for the wildlife you hunt, and the forest and field in which you walk. Immerse yourself in the outdoor experience. It will cleanse your soul.--Fred Bear

    www.misadventuregear.com

  12. #12
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    I'd recommend to get a power plug with dual USB outlet, that way you can charge the phone and the battery pack simultanousely.
    Try to get a plug that provides 2x2A output, so the charging of both goes really fast.

  13. #13

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    Got my first smart phone last week,Samsung Galaxy S7Edge.Purchased a chargable case with it which runs the phone until it dies and then the phone battery takes over is my understanding.It has power saving,and uber power saving,as well as airplane mode.Fully charged in U mode it says 7.2 days.Sadly,I saw on news yesterday that Androids have been hacked and a special patch is needed so that's my next errand to take care of.........

  14. #14
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    Even though I was in airplane mode, I found that I was still using about 50% of the battery life per day using my Samsung Galaxy 4 on the JMT... and that was just for occasional use of the Gunthok guide and blogging.

    I stayed charged by using the Anker Lite Solar charger paired with their smallest battery pack. The solar charger has enough power that it was still able to charge the battery pack when it didn't have direct sun light. I usually charged the battery pack in the afternoon and then charged the phone from the battery in the morning.

    A solar charger will be a little more difficult to use in the AT 'Green Tunnel'. But if you do want to go the way of a solar charger, I can't think of anything better to recommend than this. It's less that $50, weights < 1lb (right at about 1lb when paired with the 3.5oz battery) and provides the higher wattage needed to get some power when lighting conditions are not perfect. Any other options I looked into for my JMT hike were either more expensive, much heavier, or just didn't provide the power needed to expect any charge if you're only limited in the amount of time you can expose the charger to sunlight.

  15. #15
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    During my recent 9-days hike, I used Backcountry Navigator on my Sony Z3 compact to do full time tracking, took some photos and a text message or two per day. The battery lasted exactly 3 days, and had to be recharged two times by my Varta powerbank.
    If you are really careful to keep the phone in airplane mode (and don't forget to put it back after texting), Wifi and BT off and screen brightness low, modern phones have an amazingly long battery life.

  16. #16
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    Default

    Recharge in town. You and the phone charger. And say a little prayer for Elon Musk. It won't be long before the battery in your cell phone lasts for a week, not a day.

    Quote Originally Posted by Arden View Post
    Hi;
    I have a Li-ion battery charger for my android phone, but or course, it needs charging after using it to recharge the phone several times. That's fine for a week-long hike, but I am planning a month long hike on the A.T. in the fall, so I'm looking for a pack that uses AA cells. I thought about solar, but the added weight and length of time it takes to fully recharge a phone makes it a poor choice. Does anyone have any recommendations?

    Thanks

    Arden
    Hiking is the best teacher, it grades on a curve.
    AT miles: 255.5 / Total miles: 905.27

    Author of "Hiking Into Trail Days"



  17. #17
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    I just bought an anker adapter with 2 usb ports so I can charge phone and charger at same time. Is that a good thing to bring? http://www.ebay.com/itm/like/1119009...&ul_noapp=true

  18. #18
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    A very good one!
    Now it's important to get two decent (short and thick) cables, too.

  19. #19
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    Default

    Just be mindful, keep it off when you're not using it.

  20. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by Leo L. View Post
    I'd recommend to get a power plug with dual USB outlet, that way you can charge the phone and the battery pack simultanousely.
    Try to get a plug that provides 2x2A output, so the charging of both goes really fast.
    I found this on EBay for $6.99:

    LifeBox 2600mAh Portable Extended Powerbank Battery


    lifebox power supply.jpg


    It can be recharged from a standard phone charger, or a usb cable computer connection, and you can set up a series connection to recharge the battery pack with a phone charger while the phone is being recharged from the battery pack. It comes with a usb to micro connection cable and weighs ~77 grams.

    I have used it to to recharge my phone, mp3 player and Kindle Paperwhite. Not the speediest recharge, but the price is good!
    "Adam & Eve are the first two persons who failed to read the Apple Permissions & Exclusions."

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