Know About CR123 Battery Equivalent, Features and Uses

Last updated on April 2nd, 2024 at 11:34 am

It is a cylindrical lithium-based battery used in small devices like cameras, light meters, smart home gadgets, etc. It has a nominal voltage of 3V and a capacity of up to 1500mAh. It weighs only 16.5g and has an excellent shelf life of up to 10 years. The length of this battery is 34mm while the width is 16.5mm.

Duracell manufactures CR123 batteries with a maximum shelf life of 96 months(8 years).

What does CR123 stand for?

The International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) decides nomenclature of batteries.

  • The prefix C indicates that the battery uses lithium chemistry, specifically LiMnO2 (Lithium-Ion Manganese Oxide).
  • R denotes the battery shape, i.e., round
  • The numbers that follow denote the size of the battery. 123 denotes that this battery is two-thirds the size of a standard battery.

What is a CR123 battery?

CR123 terminals
terminals of a battery

This is a primary battery with a power capacity of up to 1500mAh. The positive terminal (i.e., cathode) is made of heat-treated manganese dioxide. In contrast, the negative terminal (anode) is made of metallic lithium. Due to a chemically stable composition, the battery capacity remains almost the same (~90%) even after 10 years of preservation at ideal conditions.

High voltage can harm electronic devices. That’s why PTC (Pressure, Temperature, Current) protection is built into this battery. It disconnects the battery from the circuit if the current exceeds a threshold.

CR123 battery equivalent

CR123A batteries are lithium-based batteries and equivalent to CR123 in almost all specifications. Other equivalents for CR123 are 123A, 2/3A, BR2/3A, CR123, CR17345, CR123A, CR23, DL123A, EL123A, K123LA, L123A, SF123A and VL123A.

CR123 vs CR123A batteries. Which one is better?

CR123 vs CR123A

Both are almost similar in most aspects. Some of the important differences between them are explained in the table below:

Weight16.5 g16 g
Length34 mm34.4 mm
Width16.5 mm17 mm
Differences between CR123 and CR123A

If the battery dimension is not a concern, prefer the CR123A battery. It has a slightly higher battery capacity.


CR123 specifications

A battery (manufactured by Energizer) can provide a continuous current of 0.30mA for a load of 100 ohms for up to 60 hours. It can give a pulse discharge of 1800mA (3sec ON/7sec OFF) for approximately 50 minutes, keeping the voltage almost constant (~2.5V). More specifications of this battery can be found in the table below:

ChemistryLithium/Manganese Dioxide
Nominal Voltage3V
Weight16.5 g
Length34 mm
Width16.5 mm
Operating Temperature-40°C to +70°C
Typical Volume7.0 cubic centimeters
Max Rev Current2 uA
CR123 specifications

For more specs, read its datasheet here


CR123 dimensions
CR123 dimensions

These batteries are compact-sized and have higher energy density. That’s why it is used in high-current draining applications. The following are some applications of CR123.

  • LED torches
  • Digital cameras
  • Flashlights
  • Security devices
  • Military equipment
  • Alarm systems
  • Portable lighting system
  • Safety equipment
  • Security sensors
  • Smoke detectors
  • Motion detectors
  • Toys


How long do CR123 batteries last?

The lifespan of a battery depends on its frequency of usage. If the battery is used continuously for an application requiring 0.30mA current, it will last up to 60 hours. But if the battery is used occasionally, or not used at all it can last up to 8~10 years.

Is CR2 and CR123 the same?

No. CR2 and CR123 are different-sized batteries with different capacities. Not interchangeable.

What are 123 batteries used for?

123 batteries (CR123A) power high-drain devices like cameras, security systems, and bright flashlights.

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Kanishk Godiyal

I have a keen passion for learning and understanding various concepts of electronics. Combining my knowledge with my SEO skills, my aim is to make electronics easy for every tech enthusiast out there.

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