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Amazon Basics Alkaline AA Review

Verdict

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Trusted Reviews Recommended

Budget batteries have a poor reputation, but the Amazon Basics Alkaline AA fight back. These batteries offer excellent performance, particularly in my high-drain tests, displaying quality you’d expect from bigger names. A low price and option to buy these batteries in huge quantities makes these some of the best batteries you can buy.

Pros

  • High capacity
  • Perform well under high loads
  • Excellent value

Cons

  • Amazon doesn’t quote detailed specs

Availability

  • UKRRP: £3.99

Key Features

  • Battery typeAlkaline AA (non-rechargeable) batteries.

Introduction

Budget battery brands are always something that I’ve avoided in the past, because in my experience you end up with poor quality batteries that don’t last long. The Amazon Basics Alkaline AA are different. Yes, they’re cheap, but they offer excellent value. They’re available in a huge range of sizes, right up to 100 batteries – and, importantly, they perform brilliantly.

According to Amazon, the batteries come with a 10-year shelf life, an air- and liquid-tight seal, and they’re built to cover a wide range of tasks, from low-drain (remotes and the like) to high-drain (lights and so on).

Amazon Basics Alkaline AA one battery lying down

Performance

  • Excellent and even performance from all batteries
  • High capacity
  • Excellent high-drain performance

Amazon doesn’t quote any battery life figures for its batteries, simply stating that these batteries deliver “the amount of power needed for a specific device; ideal for game controllers, toys, flashlights, digital cameras, clocks, and more”. That’s really what all batteries do. So, on to the tests.

To test batteries, I use an Ansmann Energy XC3000, which has a drain test operating at 600mA (+/- 20%). I bought a set of the Amazon Basics Alkaline AA and then picked four random batteries from the box for testing.

Running the test until the batteries registered 0.94V, the Amazon Basics Alkaline AA batteries averaged 1376mAh – the second-highest result I’ve seen. Impressively, all four batteries put in similar results, with little variance between them.

I leave alkaline batteries to rest for a few hours, allowing them to cool down, before re-testing to see if there’s any residual capacity. On a second drain, I got an additional 219mAh, which makes for a total tested capacity of 1595mAh in my test – and puts these batteries second overall.

Note that overall capacity does vary based on load, so these batteries would likely have higher capacity if tested under a lower load. The overall load shown here should demonstrate that these batteries will last a good amount of time in lower-drain items, such as remote controls.

Amazon Basics Alkaline AA performance graph

I tested the starting voltage, too. On average, the batteries were 1.52V, which is slightly above the 1.5V basic starting point that I’d expect from alkaline batteries. Of course, voltage drops off as the batteries drain.

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Should you buy it?

If you want cheap batteries that excel for more intensive loads, then these offer brilliant value.

You can buy higher overall capacity batteries that may prove better for a range of jobs.

Final Thoughts

They might be some of the cheapest batteries you can buy but, in my tests, the Amazon Basics Alkaline AA are some of the best. They have the second-highest total capacity, after the GP Ultra AA batteries, but the highest initial drain capacity. On that basis, these are the batteries to get for more intensive tasks, such as games controllers and lights; but the GP Ultra are my top choice if you want batteries for a multitude of jobs.

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How we test

Unlike other sites, we test every alkaline battery we review thoroughly over an extended period of time. We use standard tests to compare features properly. We’ll always tell you what we find. We never, ever, accept money to review a product.

Find out more about how we test in our ethics policy.

We use an Ansmann Energy XC 3000 to drain batteries, so that we can test capacity in mAh. After the first run, we allow the batteries to cool and then retest to give us a second reading.

We measure the initial voltage of the batteries, checking that the starting voltage is at least 1.5V.

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Battery tested capacity

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