What’s The Difference Between the MEAN WELL PB and NBP Battery Chargers?

11 November 2021
difference_between_the_mean_well_pb_and_nbp_battery_chargers

In 2021, MEAN WELL launched a new range of battery chargers, the NBP series.

Naturally, you may ask how these differ from the popular PB series chargers.  

In this article we are going to look at models with a power output of 360 WATTS or lower.  

Advantages of the MEAN WELL NPB Series Battery Chargers 

MEAN WELL NPB Series Battery Chargers
MEAN WELL NPB Series Battery Chargers

 

The key advantage of the NPB series battery chargers is that they can charge most lead acid and lithium batteries.  

This is achieved in two ways.  

Firstly, the NPB series battery chargers allow you to adjust both the charging voltage and charging current, so you can set it to the requirements of your battery.  

Secondly, they have both 2-stage and 3-stage charging. This is user selectable. 2 stage charging is best suited to lithium batteries, whereas you would use 3-stage charging for lead acid batteries. 

Being a new design, the NPB series battery chargers were designed using the latest components and manufacturing techniques. This has resulted in many of the NPB series models being smaller in size compared to the PB series. This is particularly useful if you have limited space in your application. 

Advantages of the MEAN WELL PB Series Battery Chargers 

MEAN WELL PB-360P Series Battery Charger
MEAN WELL NPB Series Battery Chargers

 

The PB series battery chargers have been around for the best part of 20 years and have an excellent track record when it comes to reliability. 

One of the key advantages of the PB-300 and PB-360 models is their mounting flange. This makes them easy to mount in caravans, boats, and other recreational vehicles.  

None of the NPB series chargers have the mounting flange, so you would have to fabricate some sort of fixing bracket. 

The PB series battery chargers are designed for lead acid batteries. However, they can charge many lithium batteries without any need for modification. Please contact MEAN WELL Australia with the specifications of the lithium battery you wish to charge, so that we can check the PB series battery charger you are considering is suitable.  

If you are charging lead acid batteries that may be under load during the charge cycle, such as when a refrigerator is running off a battery in a caravan, then your best option is to use the PB-360P-12CDM. This particular model has been specifically designed for this purpose.  

However, you cannot use the PB-360P-12CDM to charge lithium batteries. You may need to use the standard PB-360P-12 instead.  

MEAN WELL NPB and PB Battery Charger Specifications at a Glance 

 

PB-120, 230, 300, 360 Series 

NPB-120, 240, 360 Series 

AC Input 

PB-120, 300, 360: 115 or 230Vac (selectable by switch) 

PB-230: 90~264Vac 

90~264Vac 

Charging stages

3 stage charging  2 stage or 3 stage charging  
Charging voltage 

PB-120, 230: 13.8V, 27.6V, 55.2V (fixed) 

PB-300, 360: 13~14.7V, 26~28.8V, 52~56.8V (adjustable) 

10.5~15.2V, 21~30.4V, 42~60.8V (adjustable) 
Charging current  Fixed  Adjustable 50~100% 
Operating Temperature  -10/20 ~ + 45/50/60°C  -30~+70°C 
Fan 

PB-120, 230, 360: Fan cooled 

PB-300: Fanless, convection cooled 

NPB-120, 240: Fanless, convection cooled 

NPB-360: Temperature controlled fan 

Protection

Output short circuit 

Over voltage 

Over temperature 

Battery reverse polarity 

Output connector 

PB-120, 230: XLR connector 

PB-300, 360: Terminal blocks 

XLR connector, Andersen connector, and screw terminals available as standard across the range. 
Safety approvals 

PB-120, 230: CE CB 

PB-300, 360 CE CB RCM (held by ADM) 

CE CB 
EMC  RCM
Dimensions 

PB-120: 180 x 96 x 49mm 

PB-230: 190 x 96 x 49mm 

PB-300, 360: 253 x 135 x 48.5mm 

All models: 180 x 96 x 49mm 
Mounting flange 

PB-120, 230: None 

PB-300, 360: Yes 

None 

Please do not hesitate to contact MEAN WELL Australia if you have any questions about MEAN WELL battery chargers.