Controller batteries


#1

I just was just trying to find replacement batteries for my HTC Vive controllers. Having them now for over two years I noticed they do not stay charged for as long as they did earlier and eventually I would expect them to not work any longer. So out of curiosity I began to search and found that I could find replacements now from germany ebay for 9.95 euro and 20 euro shipping thats over 30 us dollars, and they simply are not available in the U.S at all at this time. I write this in the hope that when Pimax finally releases there own knuckles style controller or whatever, that they at least consider making replacement batteries available for their customers. I am confident I could replace the vive controller batteries but their cost is to high for now, so I will wait probably until they fail completely.

Edit just bought two from UK ebay came to 50 US dollars (including shipping).
I would also like to add that the state I live also has write to repair legislation that requires manufacturers to provide the components and accessories available to consumers allowing them to repair for example tractors and electronic equipment. Many companies simply do not want their customers to be able to repair their own purchased items themselves this legislation guards and protects the consumer.


#2

A few of us who are into hobbies using batteries have been suggesting they use off the shelf batteries like 18650s. We learned along the way to use products which have replaceable off the shelf batteries. They are great, better than the custom jobs people put in and you don’t wait to charge them, but swap them out and charge separately - no downtime, always playing. Better made, cheap, easily available.

However others are convinced they want a custom battery, made to a lower standard by unheard of companies that needs to be charged onboard giving downtime every time they run low, and either cannot be changed or costs stupid money to change and is difficult to find and can void warranty if changed.

I think there’s a lot of backers yet to find the joy of replaceable off the shelf lithium batteries. My opinion anyway.


#3

Thank you for sharing your thought Flinnt on this subject. In sharp contrast to all the steps I will have to go through to replace my HTC vive controller batteries that many if not most will never attempt to do, I have my occulus touch controllers where I simply swap them with another rechargeable takes 5 seconds. I realize that rechargeables cannot be used in every circumstance and do not expect Pimax to use them in their controllers but at least having whatever battery they decide is best available for purchase would be nice, a common battery not a custom nearly impossible to find one would also be really nice.


#4

186650 batteries are quite big. As long as the internal battery uses a connector & not soldered in it would be able to be replaced.

Battery banks used for cellphones makes for effective battery extention & can be used on the vive controllers as well.

@Fresco for your vive controllers also check dx.com they ship for free (at least on over 90%+ items they carry)


#5

It could be smaller ones than 18650.
With decades of playing with battery toys I’ve learned you will not beat batteries that simply slide into terminals with a slide or clip cover to access instantly.
The common off the shelf lithium batteries can be of superior quality (samsung, sony), are extremely cheap and available in every battery store anywhere.
No custom job ever comes close, not by a million miles, in convenience or price and almost always doesn’t come close in quality.


#6

Either way you need a custom battery for the space.

Its not like Oculus or Wmr were you can get away with AA or AAA batteries. You need 3.6 to 5 volts to run the sensors & you need capacity.

Yes they could maybe use a custom cartidge battery maybe like logitech did with one of their mouses.

But you could simply connect a usb-c to the headset or use the 101 battery banks folks use for cell phones for extended use.


#7

Hi @Heliosurge
I totally understand what your saying from our conversation way back when about needing enough power and capacity. They probably will use some kind of custom battery but will it be accessible or like as you also mentioned earlier hopefully not soldered in and inaccessible to replace.


#8

Thanks flint the lithium from your experience and others are great but as Heliosurge mentions the power may not be there you need power as he says of 3.5 to 5 volts sorry for repeating what he just said. Most of the design decisions for the controllers and HMD have probably been made and there is little we can do to change anything in my opinion in this final stage just moments from production. I wrote this topic just because it was of interest to me at this moment with really no belief that it would change anything at this point. I’m just ready for my New Pimax 8k headset to arrive in whatever condition as long as its functional and an upgrade to what i already have had for over 2 years now. Until then just enjoying vr with my 2 year and 2 mo. old HTC vive and my new 1080ti.


#9

i imagine & hope no different thanba ps3 controller with a 2 prong connector.


#10

thanks Heliosurge your amazing appreciate you


#11

Thanks. The only thing that may make it a tad difficult for disassemly is jamming all those goodies inside a small form factor. But should be doable imo. With likely require some care more so than a ps3 controller though.

Just have to wait & see how the final design goes.


#12

Moments from production…very optimistic. All they have so far is a 3D print of an idea for the external casing. They say Q4, which if past behaviour is anything to go off means a lot later than Q4.

Voltage is not an issue. Have a look in a radio control hobby store (even online) and be amazed at the vast options of voltage and capacity. Almost as many options as size and shape in order to fit any project.

Using external battery packs to supplement the inbuilt battery is pretty much an acknowledgement that the inbuilt battery isn’t up to scratch. A great idea when you’re stuck with a crappy inbuilt battery, but just better to not be stuck in that position in the first place.

I seriously doubt any custom battery Pimax source can beat (or even match) the capacity to size ratio of the top battery companies offerings in hobby stores.

I realise Pimax aren’t reading these forums anymore and am pretty resigned to a crappy built in, but it’s hard to give up hope that the easier, cheaper and better path could be taken.


#13

Thanks again Flinnt yeah your right again i was unclear when i first wrote about being moments from production, see I learn my lesson for not writing more carefully and specifically. I was thinking of the HMD when I wrote that and I know my topic was about controller batteries, my mistake. Thanks for sharing your experience with hobbiest batteries for radio control I do not have experince in that area so yeah maybe we will get lucky and Pimax will read and consider our input on the subject of controller batteries if they fit the form.


#14

I look forward to you posting samples as a suggestion that have over 950ma of the vive controller. That are 3.6v with physical dimensions.


#15

How do I post photos? I’m holding one right now.


#16

On the right side you will see upload. When posting a reply

Here is the Vive controller for reference of internal space. Now tge pcb can be reduced in size of course & the pimax controller would need to be for its small form factor.


#17

Thanks Helio.

Just one example of how small that capacity was several years ago. You can get shorter and deeper which would be more suitable for a controller. And a controller doesn’t need the high discharge capacity.


#18

A bit different to usual controller batteries I realise but capacity in size is the point.


#19

Cool now keep in mind folks complain of the vive wands use time.

With the controllers being sometime away if something viable is posted they are likely to consider it before finalised.

Ideally i think they would want something 1500 minimally for capacity.


#20

Yeah it’s a significantly different battery they’re after but off the shelf and slide in would be so good.