I have had the best all around luck with Energizer batteries. When I install them I usually write on them, with a Sharpie, the install date. A new twist that seems to be occurring is, for example, the flashlight going dim. Usually in what seems not enough on time for their use to be over. I have taken to testing each battery by itself and find one of the group has gone bad-less than 3/4 of a volt. I just replace one and I'm good to go. A good way to test them is with the Radio Shack meter #22-813. It's not a real precise meter but for quick all around use I can recommend it. HTH Gary
[QUOTE=dhgeyer;640561]This was mostly because they were one more thing to keep track of when I wasn't using them for a long period.[/QUOTE]
It might depend upon how you define "long period". If you are talking about a flashlight that sits in a drawer for years on end then I agree... rechargeable may not be the way to go. On the other hand I don't find it unreasonable to charge a battery that's in occasional use once a year (or after heavy use).
The best "put in the device and forget about them" battery I've found so far are the [URL="http://www.energizer.com/products/lithium-batteries/lithium/Pages/lithium-batteries.aspx"]Energizer Ultimate Lithium[/URL]. These non chargeable batteries have a shelf life of 15 years or more. The perform well in both the hot and cold. They last a good long time when in use. They are more expensive than other batteries but you can sometimes find them on sale if you look around.
You can't have everything. :)