HobbyKing.com New Products Flash Sale
Reply
Thread Tools
Old Mar 27, 2012, 12:40 PM
Registered User
MO, USA
Joined Jun 2010
686 Posts
Discussion
PL8 purchase questions

Ok, I'm looking at getting a charger to replace my Accucell 6. I have mostly 2200mah and smaller, 3S packs. However, I have fantasies of FPV and long distance flying, so that may increase eventually. I've got between 15 and 24 packs that I use, from the 1S for the ultra micros, to the 2200mah 3S I use in the Trojan.

I am short on time, and at this point can't afford to be an uber-tweaker when it comes to battery charging, maintenance, etc. As an example...I'm pretty sure I left several packs charged last fall, when I flew last. Whoops.

I'm looking for a charger to leverage my available time for:

1) charging (and discharging) packs safely, in a way that maximizes pack life
2) preparing the batteries for possible long term storage
3) possibly "bring back" packs that have been charged only with my Accucell 6, and the crappy chargers included with my various ParkZone planes.

Unless I'm swayed otherwise, my current plan is to purchase a PowerLab 8. While it may be overkill, it should also be a "buy once, cry once" purchase. If it safes a few days of flying (due to lesser chargers "dying"), saves a few packs, and helps me properly store the packs, I think it'll be a worthy investment.

So my question...what all do I want to order? My packs are all Hobbyzone / Parkzone, with additional HobbyKing packs. I believe FMA said these are all JST-XH style connectors, which FMA refers to as GP/KO.

While I may not know how to use all the accessories at this time, and I may not even need them all at this time (I've never parallel charged before), what are the "you'll be happy you bought them" accessories that I'll want to place in my order? Are any of the accessories things that I may be better off ordering from someone besides FMA?
Edit/Delete Message
motoguy1 is offline Find More Posts by motoguy1
Reply With Quote
Sign up now
to remove ads between posts
Old Mar 27, 2012, 12:47 PM
Registered User
Seattle
Joined Sep 2007
2,213 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by motoguy1 View Post
So my question...what all do I want to order? My packs are all Hobbyzone / Parkzone, with additional HobbyKing packs. I believe FMA said these are all JST-XH style connectors, which FMA refers to as GP/KO.
The two accessories I would get are:

1) FUIM3 PC Interface - IMO the PC interface unlocks the true battery workstation potential of the Powerlab. Its also required for firmware updates which frequently include customer requested enhancements in addition to operational refinements. Also there are many settings which can be tuned to each user's charging scenario. Many of these can be changed from the console of the Powerlab. But its far easier to make the changes on the PC with mouse click, then download them. You can also back up presets to a file and restore them if needed.

2) The MPA Parallel Charge Board - Since your packs already have JST-XH conenectors, they will connect directly to the board. The board covers 2s through 8s packs and can charge up to 6 at a time. You don't have to parallel charge with it. You can connect single packs to and charge that way until you are ready to start parallel charging.
Gregor99 is online now Find More Posts by Gregor99
Reply With Quote
Old Mar 27, 2012, 01:25 PM
Registered User
MO, USA
Joined Jun 2010
686 Posts
So, I'll want to get this:

http://www.usastore.revolectrix.com/...-Std-Adapter_2





For $259.95

and this:

http://www.usastore.revolectrix.com/...ion_2/MPA-XH_2



$59.95

and this:

http://www.usastore.revolectrix.com/..._2/MPA-XH-PL_2



$4.95, for a total of $324.85.

Or I could go about it by ordering this:

http://www.usastore.revolectrix.com/...MPA-XH_Combo_2



$289.95

and this:

http://www.usastore.revolectrix.com/...sion_2/FUIM3_2


$18.95, for a total of $308.90.
motoguy1 is offline Find More Posts by motoguy1
Last edited by motoguy1; Mar 27, 2012 at 01:44 PM.
Reply With Quote
Old Mar 27, 2012, 01:31 PM
Registered User
Seattle
Joined Sep 2007
2,213 Posts
For option 1, you also need the MPA internconnect cable. That cable is included in combo 6. With option 1 you will have a single JST-XH balance board and charge cables. That would let you charge one pack at a time. You can do the same with the MPA, but the single adapter board would be smaller and take less space when you didn't want to break out the MPA.
Gregor99 is online now Find More Posts by Gregor99
Reply With Quote
Old Mar 27, 2012, 01:41 PM
Registered User
MO, USA
Joined Jun 2010
686 Posts
Above post edited based on your input. Are we now looking at more "complete" and comparable packages? If so, does the difference come down to the additional banana plugs, and the additional (smaller) adapter for multi-pack?

Ok, I'll keep digging. I must admit, navigating the Revo web store to try to put together a purchase is pretty frustrating. I found the combo #5 that I mentioned above. I must have overlooked the combo #6 that you mention. And, of course, according to:

http://www.revolectrix.com/which_PL8_combo.htm

Combo 1-4 is all that exists (or is spec'd, anyway).

I want to say that right now I see myself charging 1 pack at a time, but that's probably because I'm used to doing it that way. When the option of multi-pack charging is available, I may find I never want to go back to single-pack charging again. If there's a $10 or so difference, I'd probably prefer to have both options.

I'll be the first to admit I'm not completely up to speed on all the components I need to put together. I appreciate your input with this.
motoguy1 is offline Find More Posts by motoguy1
Last edited by motoguy1; Mar 27, 2012 at 01:48 PM.
Reply With Quote
Old Mar 27, 2012, 03:42 PM
Registered User
Seattle
Joined Sep 2007
2,213 Posts
If so, does the difference come down to the additional banana plugs, and the additional (smaller) adapter for multi-pack?
Yes, except the smaller adapter is not for a multi-pack. You can only charge one battery at a time with that adapter.


Combo 1-4 is all that exists (or is spec'd, anyway).

It looks like combo 6 was recently added. Perhaps the combo page is still in the process of be updated.
http://www.usastore.revolectrix.com/...MPA-XH_Combo_2

When the option of multi-pack charging is available, I may find I never want to go back to single-pack charging again.
That's possible. But there's always a need to charge a single pack from time to time. The thing is, the MPA can do that as well.

If there's a $10 or so difference, I'd probably prefer to have both options.
Its not bad to have extra parts. That's always been my approach. It costs more up front, but gives me the most amount of flexiblity for charging, testing and troublehshooting. Some would like to just keep it simple and get what that need. There's nothing wrong with that. But if you have talent with a soldering iron, DVM and know (or can learn about) electronics, spare parts become building blocks to what ever charging scnerio you can dream up.
Gregor99 is online now Find More Posts by Gregor99
Reply With Quote
Old Mar 27, 2012, 04:11 PM
You're killin' me Smalls
BrownEyedFool's Avatar
United States, NJ, Hillsborough Township
Joined Sep 2011
1,611 Posts
The web page can be a little daunting to navigate. I think the combos that include the MPA were added at a later date and were sort of filed under MPA combos moreso than Powerlab6 or Powerlab8 combos. They should be cross referenced but may not be. Going to the front page at the very bottom of the page is the MPA Combos Are Here link that gets you to them.

Interesting that the PL8 MPA combo comes with the adapter for a single pack but the PL6 doesn't.
BrownEyedFool is offline Find More Posts by BrownEyedFool
Reply With Quote
Old Mar 27, 2012, 04:36 PM
Registered User
Seattle
Joined Sep 2007
2,213 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by BrownEyedFool View Post
Interesting that the PL8 MPA combo comes with the adapter for a single pack but the PL6 doesn't.
The adapter include with the Powerlab8 is for FMA/Revolectrix batteries as well as older adapters. For instance I can connect adapters I use on my Cellpro4s to the include adapter. So it will have limited use for some that does not have older FMA batteries, or adapters.
Gregor99 is online now Find More Posts by Gregor99
Reply With Quote
Old Mar 27, 2012, 06:02 PM
President, FMA, Inc.
Tim Marks's Avatar
Joined Mar 2008
1,059 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by BrownEyedFool View Post
The web page can be a little daunting to navigate. I think the combos that include the MPA were added at a later date and were sort of filed under MPA combos moreso than Powerlab6 or Powerlab8 combos. They should be cross referenced but may not be. Going to the front page at the very bottom of the page is the MPA Combos Are Here link that gets you to them.

Interesting that the PL8 MPA combo comes with the adapter for a single pack but the PL6 doesn't.
Hi:

The basic Cellpro adapter comes with the PL8, and not with the PL6. This is considered a "charging accessory" and has nothing to do with MPA combos.

Tim Marks
Tim Marks is offline Find More Posts by Tim Marks
Reply With Quote
Old Mar 28, 2012, 01:15 AM
Registered User
MO, USA
Joined Jun 2010
686 Posts
I just placed the order for the PL8, MPA and cable. Thanks for the help, guys. Now just to get some usage out of it, to help alleviate the sting.
motoguy1 is offline Find More Posts by motoguy1
Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools

Similar Threads
Category Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Help! PL8 Questions stroudj FMA Direct 4 Dec 30, 2011 01:06 AM
Discussion CellPro Adapter for PL8 Question Stumblebee FMA Direct 4 Dec 06, 2011 09:45 PM
Discussion Question / discussion PL8 V2 and power supply supermo26 Batteries and Chargers 15 Sep 28, 2011 11:02 PM
Discussion Some questions on PL8 before I buy alexf1852 FMA Direct 2 Sep 26, 2011 04:27 PM
Discussion PL8 Charge current question squid FMA Direct 8 Sep 24, 2011 11:23 AM