Fxlion PL-SP40 4-Channel Battery Charger for Sony NP-F and Panasonic Batteries

October 8th, 2020 icon / message-square 6
Fxlion PL-SP40 4-Channel Battery Charger for Sony NP-F and Panasonic Batteries

The Fxlion PL-SP40 is a 4-channel battery charger that is compatible with Sony NP-F style and Panasonic D54/VBD batteries. If you’re looking for a reliable and fast tool to speed up your workflow, let’s take a closer look at it!

Fxlion PL-SP40 Features

Battery chargers are usually not the most exciting item in a filmmaker’s package. However, a fast and reliable battery charger is something that can save you time and money. When you’re back at home or a hotel room after a 12 hour day, the last thing you want to do is wake up during the night to swap out batteries so you can continue shooting tomorrow.

The Fxlion PL-SP40 is not a new product, but something I purchased recently that saved me hours, and that might be useful for you, too. It is a 4-channel battery charger compatible with Sony NP-F style batteries and older Panasonic D54/VBD cells.

Nowadays, more and more camera equipment runs on Sony NP-F batteries. I have a dozen of these batteries to power my monitor/recorder, lights, sound recorder, and so on. If you use the larger Sony NP-F970 version, they can take quite a long time to charge. And if you don’t want to go with large V-Mount/Gold mount batteries, they are affordable batteries and easy to carry.

With the Fxlion PL-SP40, all you have to do is plug the charger to mains power, put your batteries in it, and you’re ready to go. All batteries will charge at the same time, and Sony/Panasonic batteries can even charge simultaneously.

The PL-SP40 is made of plastic, but it is well built. It feels like you can really trust it out of the box. There are four charging indicators on the left side – one per battery – that simply go from red to green when your battery is charged. On the right side, there is the power input as well as an on/off switch.

Keep in mind that it’s not the lightest nor most portable Sony NP-F charger available, with dimensions of 8.78 x 4.06 x 2.48″/223 x 103 x 63 mm and a weight of 27.51oz/780g. Mine lives primarily plugged in at the studio, but it can travel quite easily if necessary.

Image credit: Fxlion

Pricing

The Fxlion PL-SP40 is available now for US$225. It may seem like a lot of money for a battery charger, and it is primarily aimed at rental houses.

I had several one/two slot battery chargers die on me – even from reputable manufacturers like the Hahnel Cube – and I was tired of carrying multiple chargers with me while traveling. I ended up pulling the trigger once and for all – and it hurt – but I don’t regret it.

There are not many quad battery chargers available on the market for Sony NP-F batteries, and one of the only other ones I found is the SWIT LC-D421 that retails for US$305.

I truly wish other versions for different batteries, like Canon LP-E6 batteries, were available for the Fxlion. There are very few options available for quad-channel Canon LP-E6 chargers at the moment, one of the only dedicated one being the Dolgin Engineering TC400 that retails for US$645. The SWIT LC-D421 can be configured with 4 Canon LP-E6 battery plates too and is a little bit more affordable.

What battery charger do you use to charge your Sony NP-F batteries? What do you think about the Fxlion PL-SP40? Don’t hesitate to let us know in the comments below!

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