Power to the Player!

Ever wonder if pricey batteries make a difference in your hand-held device? A recent study conducted at the Worcester Polytechnic Institute was reported on the dealnews blog by Mitch Lipka, with results that cheapskates like me have often suspected: the expensive batteries aren’t worth the bucks. There is one exception. The Energizer Advanced Lithium battery does last longer – but also has an initial voltage surge that could be problematic. So if you circulate devices in your library or school (or have teens who devour batteries like potato chips), save some money and buy big quantities of bargain brands.

I keep a batch of portable CD players & cassette players (yes, they still exist) for student checkout in my school library – otherwise, most of these iPod generation kids have no devices to play our huge collection of audiobooks. I did try to use rechargables for awhile, but when the charge ran out at home, the kids would toss the rechargable & replace with their own AAs. Ouch $$ ! So now I use the cheapest I can find, and assuage my conscience a bit by having a BatteriesPlus recycling bucket under the checkout desk.

If you’d like to try a cool project for your techie patrons or teen groups, check out the MintyBoost! – Small battery-powered USB charger by ladyada on the Instructables website (pictured above). A great way to pack some extra power in a mini Altoids tin

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About the Author:

Mary Burkey is an independent library consultant in Columbus (OH). An enthusiastic audiophile, she has served on all four of ALA's audiobook award committees as well as the Audies. In addition to writing the "Voices in My Head" column for Booklist, she is the author of Audiobooks for Youth: A Practical Guide to Sound Literature (ALA, 2013). Follow her on Twitter at @mburkey.

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