More and more Sanyo Eneloop gadgets are hitting the market, giving consumers new and innovative ways to use rechargeable battery technology. But are the prices of these newfangled Sanyo Eneloop gadgets eliminating the savings of using rechargeable batteries altogether?
Up until recently, when you saw the name “Sanyo Eneloop,” you typically thought of their industry-leading rechargeable batteries or one of their AA battery chargers. However, the past year or so has revealed a new research and design effort on the part of the Sanyo Eneloop brand to expand the use of its rechargeable batter technology and brach out into new and sometimes unusual new gadgets that go beyond a simple rechargeable battery or AA battery charger.
For example, we reported a while back about the Sanyo Eneloop Stick Booster, which allows mobile gadget users to recharge their devices using nothing more than simple AA Sanyo Eneloop rechargeable batteries. The more recent and exotic Sanyo Eneloop invention is its slight odd battery-powered bicycle, which uses rechargeable battery power to assist the rider on slopes and hills. Continuing on this trend, Sanyo Eneloop has now released yet another rechargeable battery-inspired gadget for guitarists: Pedal Juice.
For those of you who may not know, guitarists often use a series of effects pedals that plug in between the electric guitar and amplifier, which alter and enhance the tone of the guitar signal. The vast majority of these effects pedals use 9 volt batteries, and so many guitarists spend time and money before each gig changing out batteries in their pedals, which proves to be cumbersome. However, most effects pedals feature an AC adaptor jack, and many guitarists opt to “plug in ” their pedals instead of using batteries.
The Sanyo Eneloop Pedal Juice offers guitarists a third option: it is basically a big, powerful NiMH rechargeable battery that can supply effects with AC power.
The preliminary reviews for Pedal Juice are glowing. CNET’s own Donal Bell concisely states: “On average, you get up to 50 hours of power from a full charge and a three-stage indicator light warns you when it’s time to plug it back in. By comparison, a 9v battery will typically last only a show or two in a modern digital effects pedal. This thing could last up to a months worth of gigs and rehearsals.”
There’s only one issue with Pedal Juice: the price. It retails for around A$ 150, which is about A$ 50 higher than many guitar effects pedals!
Furthermore, Sanyo Eneloop‘s development of such an obscure and niche product (how many guitarists are there in the world, anyway?), makes one begin to wonder if the rechargeable battery leader is beginning to spread itself too thin?
Because the Sanyo Eneloop brand is the predominant rechargeable battery on the market today, they also enjoy premium pricing as well. However, it remains to be seen if this level of premium pricing will translate into other devices, such as bicycles and guitar effects pedals. Since Sanyo Eneloop is clearly prospecting into these new niches, one would have thought they would keep prices down in order to encourage consumers to experiment with their new products. That, however, doesn’t seem to be the case.
So, it is worth investing in the new Sanyo Eneloop gadgets? My advice would be to hold off. It’s far more likely that other companies will catch up with some of these newfangled inventions and might manage to do an even better job of designing them and/or selling them at lower prices? Bicycle companies like Huffy and Murray to name a few could easily partner with someone like Energizer (who recently partnered with Nintendo to create an induction-charged Wiimote) and come out with a bicycle that rivals Sanyo Eneloop’s in design and beats them in price. The same could be true for Boss, DOD, and other top guitar pedal manufacturers with respect to Pedal Juice.
At present, the best approach is to trust Sanyo Eneloop with what they do best: making rechargeable batteries and reliable AA battery chargers.
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