Quickie Battery Life - A Data Point

oguinn · 1795

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Offline oguinn

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on: November 02, 2018, 10:27:51 AM
For those wondering what practical battery life of the Quickie looks like, I've now gone through one cycle of batteries since building it.
  • I completed my build and started using the Quickie on July 20. Since then I have run the Quickie with the potentiometer at 100% when in use. I estimated using it about 4.5 hours a day in my office while working.
  • The D cells died on 10/8. I could tell these were going out because of some distortion and pulled them when they ducked below a volt per cell. 57 workdays - about 257 hours
  • The 9 volts died on 11/2. I could tell these were going out because of a LOT of distortion and because the Quickie wasn't providing a ton of gain. In fact I thought it was my SEX amp messing up again (since I just fixed an issue there). These were about 1V per cell, which is probably not great for the Quickie... oops. 76 workdays - about 342 hours

Hopefully this is helpful for anyone considering a purchase. Your mileage may vary.
« Last Edit: November 02, 2018, 10:30:20 AM by oguinn »

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Offline cpaul

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Reply #1 on: November 02, 2018, 06:03:24 PM
Thanks for your experience.

I have found, by accident, that the B+ can go QUITE low and still "work."  But distortion is fairly high and the sound quality isn't very good.  In general I prefer them at about 6v or more each, so 24v B+ minimum.  But I often inadvertently listen below that because two of the NiMH batteries I often use seem to drop extremely quickly, well before I am ready for it.  So there is a short period when I'm running at well below 24v.  In fact, one battery seems to read at -3 or -4v or so...odd.  As it happens, this can occur when batteries are used in series like in Quickie.  If one drops to 0v but current continues to flow, it is possible (according to a source I've found) for current to flow in the opposite direction (particularly, I assume, if as in my case the positive side of that battery is set to the ground potential in the circuit and thus provides a negative voltage to part of the circuit).  This is not good for the battery, so you should change batteries well before this happens.

As for the D-cell filament batteries, I've found I can go as low as 0.9v or so if I want to.  Below that, the loaded voltage (voltage when turned on) is actually more like 0.5 or 0.6v and that is just too low.  Distortion isn't terrible, may not be noticeable, but it's just not worth it.  Oddly, above that point it seems like the loaded voltage isn't a lot lower than the unloaded voltage.  So there seems to be a magic point at which the batteries just truly run out of steam.