I strongly recommend that you go for the type of NiMH rechargeable batteries that come pre-charged. The best known ones are called Eneloop from Sanyo and GE. They are normally 2100 mAh capacity..
Normal NiMH rechargeables loose their charge at the rate of about 1% per day, so if you haven't used the camera for a couple of months you might find that the batteries are flat. The newer batteries like Eneloop loose their charge at about 15% per year!.
As far as chargers are concerned, I recommend getting a good quality one, the type that monitors each battery separately and changes to a trickle charge when each is fully charged. Also go for one that allows you to vary the charge current - fast charging with a high current is occasionally very useful but it reduces the battery's life, so it is better to charge slowly if you have the time to do so.Chris R..
There are a few things about batteries and chargers to know. Not all that complicated. Rechargable batteries are the way to go and of those, Nickel-hydride are the most useful and available. If you are in a VERY cold environment below 20F. then lithium batteries should be used as other types lose power with extreme cold while lithium doesn't. If you are one who doesn't take all that many photos and weeks go by without using camera, the batteries will gradually lose power.
They are rechargable. A battery charger that doesn't overheat the batteries while charging is important as overheating damages batteries. Chargers that have a auto shutoff when charger senses full charge are available..
You can go with a Powerex 2700 which will give you the most shots per charge of any NiMH but for shelf life the Eneloops are great and can be found locally. But for a charger you should look into this Maha C204W which is a smart charger unlike the cheap fast chargers that can ruin batteries over a while. It has a reconditioning circuit and has a built in power supply unlike those bricks that many come with..
Do to good recommendation on these and other forums, I took a look at the La Crosse Technology BC-900 AlphaPower Battery Charger. It looked good to me, so I ordered it last week. It was on my Christmas wish list, but didnt make the cut. Anyway, I ordered it from Amazon.com for $39.99 and I should receive it today..
I was planning to try the new Rayovac hybrid batteries, but Amazon had a good price on Eneloops, so I ordered them at the same time. I got 8 Eneloops for $14.96 whereas the Rayovacs would have cost about $14.00 for 4 at my local Batteries Plus..
I havent used the charger yet, but the recommendation and specs look good..
Like David said, I highly recommend the la crosse charger. I actually bought this one online after someone recommending it to me on this site..
The link for it is here:http://www.thomas-distributing.com/.../la_crosse_bc-900_battery_charger.php.
What is really nice it charges each battery individually, so once one is full it stops. As well I got a few sets of batteries out of it, carrying case and I believe a 'D or C' battery holder for charging as well. It is a fantastic unit and I highly recommend it!Regards,Stacey..
I have this charger http://www.mahaenergy.com/store/viewitem.asp?idproduct=407A bit pricey, but works great. The company just came out with some new batteries that are supposed to have a long shelf life as well, but I haven't tried them yet.Scott W. McClure.
'You only get one sunrise and one sunset a day and you only get so many days on the planet. A good photographer does the math and doesn't waste either.'... The Late Galen Rowell..