HiTEC Lipo Checker Review
Review by Nicholas Turner, Staff Contributor
HiTEC Battery Checker
- Easy to read in daylight
- Small form factor
- Displays capacity percentage left
- Displays per cell voltage
- Reputable company
- FlightPower/Thunder Power adapter included
- 1-6S liPo support
- No battery required, draws from the balance connector on battery
- Light weight
- Alarm audio level is very low
- Charger and power supply fans over power the alarm
- Not able to remove balance board lead
The power supply's manual is sitting on top of the foam encasement. Short, sweet, simple, only English instruction set was in my box. Pulling back the foam cover shows a compartmentalized box with the power supply wrapped in plastic on one side and all included cables and dual banana plugs in the other compartment. The charger came with the AC power cable, four dual banana plugs, and DC input power cable with XT60 connector. The ePowerBox has nine LEDs on the front to indicate the amount of power being outputted by the power supply. There is a power switch on the side of the power supply as well as a USB port on the other side for charging mobile devices or the 1S packs (and charger adapter/cables) that come in aircraft like the Estes ProtoX or Dromida Ominus. Overall, it's clean, sleek, compact design with everything clearly labeled.
- Applicable Battery Pack: 2-6S LiPo
- Case Size: 70 x 38 x 11mm
- Voltage Display Tolerance: +1-1.5%
- Weight: 23g
- Voltage Display Resolution: O.O1v
- Operating Temperature: 10 ~ +45'C
- Voltage Display Range: 0-5v
- Storage Temperature: -20 ~ +60'C
- Balancing Current: 50mA
I'm a long time nitro pilot but have been amassing a collection of liPos for new electric powered aircraft. With that I started looking for a good liPo checker. I borrowed one of the cheapo ones that only shows cell voltage one at a time from a buddy. I didn't like it as I wanted to know battery capacity without having to do math at the flying site. Searching through Amazon I came across this one and instantly thought that was what I'm looking for. Compared to others I found in the same price range (around $20 USD at the time of this review) the Hitec LiPo Checker was the most appealing to me, and I knew by having the Hitec name if there is to be problems I would have reliable customer support.
There's a piece of foam that holds the unit, in place with the rest of the box contents behind the foam. The manual is small single sheet of paper and in the language I needed (English). A wrist strap is included as well as an adapter for Thunder Power balance plugs. Everything was contained in a small box with clear plastic for the front of the liPo checker to be seen. There was also a static cling on the front display panel of the liPo checker.
Loop the small thread of the wrist strap around the wrist strap attachment area. If needing to use the Thunder Power adapter, plug it into the liPo checker.
Using the checker
Thunder Power adapter. Notice the capacity left level on the left side of the checker. Poor lighting for the picture does not capture the readability. Standard XH connection, two of the cells are being balanced. Notice how the v is not present for these cells, picture was taken at the right time while the v was flashing.
I found using the checker super easy. Just plug the balance connector (XH type supported without the Thunder Power adapter). At the time of this review only one of my liPos doesn't use the standard XH type balance connector, it's a Thunder Power battery. I found with all my 2S and 3S packs, this checker worked flawlessly. When connected correctly, the display shows the percentage of capacity left as well as each cell's voltage. After 5 seconds of being connected, it'll start to balance the cells if the difference exceeds 0.02V. When a cell is being balanced the v beside the voltage readout will blink. According the manual when the difference reaches 0.01V or less the balancing will stop and the checker will enter a sleep mode. Since I have the Hitec X1 Pro Charger, I haven't used this liPo checker to balance packs; I use my charger for that. But reading other people's thoughts/reviews on this checker indicates the balancing portion is very slow. My primary use case for this liPo checker is to check packs at the field. Even though I use three different liPo sacks (Charged, Discharged, and Storage) I want to double check and ensure I didn't misplace a pack before putting it in an aircraft, as well as to know how far away from storage charge the packs are.
Overall, I'm really impressed with this checker. The lack of backlight for night time/low light use doesn't bother me as I'm not into night flying. I don't regret this purchase at all and would recommend this checker to anyone.