18650 batteries are rechargeable cells used to power high performance electronics, such as laser pointers and vaporizers. These are our recommended batteries:
- Best for high-powered flashlights and laser pointers: Orbtronic 18650 Battery (3400 mAh) — 2 cells for $32
- Best for e-cigarette and vaporizers: Panasonic NCR18650B 18650 Battery (3400 mAh) – 4 cells for $31
- The best 18650 battery charger: XTAR VC2
About 18650 Batteries
What are the advantages of 18650 batteries? They are 3.7 volt lithium-ion batteries that can be recharged and are compatible with a wide range of electronics, including laptops, digital cameras, flashlights, and even electric car batteries.
Panasonic, Sanyo, Orbtronic, Samsung, and LG are the top level 18650 cell manufacturers, making long lasting cells in a standard size (18 mm by 65 mm) that fits all 18650 compatible devices. Chinese knockoffs are available for cheaper, but are prone to shorter lifespans and aren’t always uniform size. As a rule, be wary of “protected” 18650 batteries, which have small circuit boards at the bottom that do not fit some electronics, such as flashlights.
High-drain batteries are safer and designed for use with high current devices, such as vaporizers. They are also less wasteful, meaning they have a longer life cycle and can last for more recharges.
18650 Battery Chargers
The best part about 18650 batteries is that they can be recharged. That means you will need a reliable charger to keep them energized and in working order. I like the XTAR VC2 charger because it has a informative LCD screen display.
The LCD screen tells you the real mAh capacity of your batteries, so you can make sure they are getting the advertised amount of fill or identify when they are losing efficiency.