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Are there any off-brand batteries that aren't terrible compared to the on-brand ones?


Andy Zou
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I don't know what sort of metrics one can use to tell similarly spec'd batteries apart, but I hate that on-brand camera batteries are the only ones worth their weight.  Why is that?  Shouldn't a mAh be the same regardless if they are quoted as such?  Are some just lying?  Is there some sort of communication between battery and camera that makes the proprietary ones better?

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I've had good luck with Power Extra batteries personally. 

OEM batteries naturally work better because they're made by the camera manufacturer. They often have better quality control compared to generic manufacturers and don't fudge things, or at least not as much as some unknown company might. Generic manufacturers also have to backwards engineer batteries since they don't have the exact manufacturing specs that the OEM have. 

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Yeah, if you buy one from B&H or Adorama you're good to go, but it's a craps shoot if you buy it from Amazon unless the seller IS Amazon (as opposed to just "fulfilled by Amazon.")

I've used Power Extra batteries for 4 different cameras and they've never failed me after thousands of hours of use, so I stick with them. 

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No, original batteries will always be better in every aspect. You're buying a USD$2000+ camera, investing a 10% of that budget in batteries it's a wise choice (like the Sony A7III at usd$2000 plus 3 batteries for around usd$200 for a total of 4 batteries = 1 day of full work). It's like SD cards, you need reliable hardware for a good work.

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1 hour ago, tomastancredi said:

Wasabi batteries have worked really well for me. 

I've bought Wasabi batteries and not had an awful time, but I can't claim that I've really tested them hard either.

21 minutes ago, Coiii said:

No, original batteries will always be better in every aspect. You're buying a USD$2000+ camera, investing a 10% of that budget in batteries it's a wise choice (like the Sony A7III at usd$2000 plus 3 batteries for around usd$200 for a total of 4 batteries = 1 day of full work). It's like SD cards, you need reliable hardware for a good work.

There's no reason that original batteries will always be better.  The problem is that after-market batteries are probably price-driven and are therefore likely to be of lower quality, but there's no reason that an after-market supplier can't make a superior product if they decided that there was a market for it.  Some after-market batteries claim to have larger capacity or are more durable, and a company could do well and get a reputation if they actually delivered on this.

On the other hand, manufacturers often compete on pricing on the camera body, and make more profit on the peripheral items such as lenses or batteries.  Yes, they have a brand name to protect with reliability etc, but in any market with an established name the reason that newcomers often grow and steal market-share is that incumbents are often price-gauging...

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2 hours ago, tomastancredi said:

Wasabi batteries have worked really well for me. 

My Wasabi batteries got super puffy, either due to heat (the temperature is over 45 degrees here, during the summers), or due to over charging (not sure because only battery charges at a time, and they didn't get puffy until many days after being charged). They could be put into the camera, because they wouldn't fit anymore. 

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  • Super Members

Sorry for the OT about Bruno....

With regard to batteries, I haven't really got many horror stories about any 3rd party batteries but I'm surprised there have been issues with Wasabi as I've had good luck with them on multiple different camera types.

If you are looking for a compromise between original batteries and unbranded then I'd have a look at Duracell of all people.

When the D500 was released and could only use original Nikon batteries, I bought a couple of the Duracell versions as I'd read a report that said they were compatible and they have been absolutely flawless. 

I've since bought them for X-T2 and again they've been perfect so, for me, they offer a solid brand version of the originals at a reduced price.

 

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I've personally had good luck with Wasabi branded batteries. I had them for my GoPro hero 2, 3 and 6. Also had them on my D5300 and now in my GH5 with no problem yet.

I use them with the OEM panasonic chargers however, as I don't trust the dual chargers with two charging pins. The Panasonic charger has three pins for a temp readout and slows the charging if the batteries go over temp.

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