Are you new to the RC hobby and you are having trouble with all the lingo and acronyms to differentiate between the various types of battery connectors? Have you heard the terms "Deans" or "banana" connector and you don't have a clue what they are talking about? You are not the only RC newbie who has had this issue. The hobby has been growing and progressing by leaps and bounds especially in the realm of electric flight and there is quite a bit of knowledge to get up to speed on when it comes to terminology and concepts. The purpose of this post is to help ones with some of the main types of battery connectors as this is going to be something you are hit with early on in the hobby as buying batteries to power your planes is a must and before you fly you will need to know what you are buying.
One of the newbie things to watch out for is to make sure if you are buying a battery, the battery matches the connection on your ESX or speed controller. Often many new ones in the hobby will pick up a brand new lipo only to realize the lipo connection is a "Deans" connection and the ESX is a 4.0 Banana or HXT connection. You will notice certain websites or RC parts stores lean towards a certain type of connectors as just about all their batteries offered come fitted with a specific type. So definitely keep that in mind when you buy a battery from one online store and an ESC from another. So let's get right into identifying the different types of plugs to look for when shopping around or to recognize these terms when reading articles or requirements for a particular plane.
Many recognize the Deans plugs by the classic "T" connection that the plug resembles.
The E-flite connector or EC3 is becoming more and more popular especially among guys on the forums.
4.0 "Banana" or HXT
JST Connectors are more popular on smaller lipo batteries and on other devices such as LED lights and so forth.
The Tamiya Connector is popular among RC trucks and cars.
The balance plug is the plug in addition to your main power plug attached to your lipo such as a deans, banana, etc, that is used in balanced charging to make sure all cells in a multicell battery are charged equally and evenly.
Well, there you have it. The most common RC connectors - what they are called and what they look like. Hopefully these pics and descriptions will help you the next time you go to pick out that new lipo to match up with your new speed controller on the scratch build!