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Fujifilm X100: Can’t Charge the Battery

I still have the Fujifilm X100 that I bought several years ago. Its good looks don’t go out of style and its images are still excellent (see my 2011 Fujifilm X100 review).

The battery died or so it seemed: it would not charge; the charger light lights up, but after 24 hours, no charging and a battery so dead that licking its contacts (a simple but effective test) hardly provides any electric tingle at all. The camera gets no power whatsoever from the battery.

So I bought a brand-new Fujifilm NP-95 battery back in May, which at first charged up fine. By mid July it too has failed, meaning the same charger problem: the light goes on, but the battery does not charge.

I’ve seen “smart” batteries lose their brains (so to speak), and it could be that alone. The cause being unclear.

So I’m in a quandary: were both batteries bad, is the charger bad, and/or is the camera killing the battery somehow? I hate to go dump more money into a new battery and charger if the camera is damaging the batteries somehow. But it’s a nice camera, and I’d like to see it working again. So I think I’ll just order the $19.95 Watson charger and see if it works.

UPDATE: the $19.95 Watson charger immediately charged the battery, no further issues.

Perhaps a reader out there has some ideas.

The Fujifilm support page (if you can call it that) consists of some Q&A one can search on—it’s absurd to call this support. I cannot find any place to call or send an email on this question, which is quite frustrating. That ought to be front and center on that page.

Merlin E writes saying Fujifilm tech support is 1-800-800-3854.

Ragna V writes:

I have experienced this twice - first with the charger on my X100, later on with my X100s. Very annoying, especially when I'm travelling. I understand that this is a well known problem with these chargers. My batteries behave ok and work fine in a new charger.

My solution? Never trust a Fuji charger. I bought a Hahnel UniPal Plus charger instead https://www.hahnel.ie/index.cfm?page=universalchargers&pId=133 It will charge almost anything, and is always with me on my travels as a backup. And it even works on a 12 V power supply in your car or boat.

DIGLLOYD: I ordered that inexpensive $19.95 Watson charger. If it works, good enough.

Cliff L writes:

The problem with batteries failing to charge is not unique to Fuji batteries or chargers - I’ve had the same thing happen with a Canon LP-E6 battery too. I’ve often thought one can never have too many spare batteries, but on one occasion I was unable to revive a nearly new battery that hd sat in a drawer for several months. N ow I keep fewer spares and try to rotate all the batteries through the cameras periodically to keep them functioning properly. I wonder why this doesn’t seem to happen to batteries that sit on store shelves for prolonged periods of time?

DIGLLOYD: All LiIon batteries can degrade steadily over time, and high heat can damage them quickly. But I don’t find the comparison appropriate this this case, it was a steadily/regularly used battery. Nor have I had other brand camera batteries fail in this way, and that’s over 10 years or so, starting with the ~1 megapixel Olympus whatever it was.

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