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Cameras, Lenses and Accessories: Discuss 3rd party batteries...Does anyone use 3rd party batteries? Good or bad? I was searching for a back up battery for my D90, ...
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Old 28-11-2009, 01:57   #1 (permalink)
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3rd party batteries

Does anyone use 3rd party batteries? Good or bad? I was searching for a back up battery for my D90, and Duracell Direct has one with a 3 year warranty. It costs about the same as the OEM battery. The Nikon battery comes with a 30 day warranty. What's up with that?



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Old 28-11-2009, 06:58   #2 (permalink)
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Re: 3rd party batteries

I divide Li-ion batteries into four categories:
1. OEM. Relatively expensive but works well and is safe
2. Branded copy, some unbranded, often counterfeit with OEM markings. Less expensive but works well and is safe
3. Unbranded copy. Cheap, OK for a while, dubious safety (may overheat on charging)
4. Unbranded copy, usually counterfeit with OEM markings. Very cheap but is a total con as it contains NiMH batteries, so isn't even a Li-ion!

Li-ion batteries should have internal circuitry to control overpressure (and so a relief valve), prevent overcharging and running flat. Overpressure can lead to battery bursting, overcharge to overheat and melting and running flat will stop the battery ever working again. Add to this the capability of poor quality or damaged batteries able to release their energy instantly (i.e. explode/catch fire) and you can see why manufacturers recall poorly made batteries - and why care needs to be taken with Li-ion batteries!

Personally, I've used pretty much every sort (except the 'dummies' with NiMH) at one time or another - and currently use branded in all my gear (as the originals have usually given up the ghost).

Oh, one other 'feature' of Li-ion is that they start degrading from date of manufacture and so whether you use them or not they'll only last 2 or 3 years max - so watch getting old stock. I've had that too - with the High street mobile shop claiming that I didn't charge my phone correctly - which is total rubbish as you can recharge Li-ion at any time (i.e. no need to let it go flat). I got my money back but needless to say I won't ever use Carphone Warehouse again!
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Old 28-11-2009, 08:57   #3 (permalink)
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Re: 3rd party batteries

Simpler answer

Yes I do, I've been using them for the last few years in all of my camera's.

I've had a 350D, have a 40D and a 5D2 and I've or am using copy batteries in all of them. Only the 5D2 have I had a minor problem but thats because the origional 5D2 battery is chipped and the copies aren't.

I've bought 10 batteries for the 350D/40D which share the same battery. of those I've had one duff one that wouldn't charge. I now have 4 copies for my 5D2 and they are all okay. The 5D2 has to be fooled into using non chipped batteries but they last just as long as the origional.

The last lot I got for the 5D2 are Phottix cells and I took my time and did some research, Phottix have been on the market a long time and seem to only get good reports.

5D2 origional now over £50, 2x copies plus charger £21.

Food for thought.

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Old 28-11-2009, 09:53   #4 (permalink)
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Re: 3rd party batteries

I got a duracell one for my D90 from play.com - it was less than half the price of a nikon one. It's worked perfectly from day one.
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Old 28-11-2009, 10:30   #5 (permalink)
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Re: 3rd party batteries

i have 3rd party batteries for both the 400D and the 30D and only had one completely fail for no reason, however it did last over a year, the rest are still going strong!
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Old 28-11-2009, 12:21   #6 (permalink)
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Re: 3rd party batteries

I used a variety of clone BP-511 batteries for the 10D/30D/40D and had no problems, though I stuck to reputable suppliers. I bought a genuine Canon battery for the 5DII because they are chipped and I wanted the charge readout etc, and I thought it didn't make sense to spoil a £2000 ship in order to save £30 of tar.
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Old 28-11-2009, 21:32   #7 (permalink)
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Re: 3rd party batteries

I bought a spare EOS 20D Battery from a reputable supplier and well known brand at about half the canon price or less. However, it only holds half the charge of the canon battery so was not good value. For my 5D2, I bought a genuine Canon battery as a spare and do not regret the extra cost.

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Old 28-11-2009, 23:58   #8 (permalink)
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Re: 3rd party batteries

I purchased a none oem for my D80 from Digi quick, it failed after two years,they sent me a replacement by return of post, no problems . It also has full functionality ie, full battery info on my D90,battery age, shots taken with battery and charge remaining. Cannot say better than that!
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Old 29-11-2009, 06:01   #9 (permalink)
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Re: 3rd party batteries

Please be patient with me I'm new at this. Would you choose the Duracell battery which costs a little more than the Nikon and has 3 year warranty? I like the idea of a 3 year warranty, but I've heard that using a 3rd party battery can void your warranty. Is this true?
Thanks again!
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Old 29-11-2009, 07:37   #10 (permalink)
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Re: 3rd party batteries

I guess if it could be proved that damage/malfunction was caused by 3rd party batteries, then this would obviously impact any warranty claim - but how they'd prove that is another question!

3 year warranty could be useful, especially as they're so date sensitive
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Old 29-11-2009, 07:57   #11 (permalink)
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Re: 3rd party batteries

Duracell is a name you can trust, yes, worth paying for...

I use Uniross rechargeable batteries in many things, because even though they do wear out eventually, I have never had a truly duff one yet, so paying extra for quality is worth it for me...
But Uniross dont do batteries for everything...

Even equipment manufacturer supplied batteries can be duff... remembering that mostly they try to save as much as possible in the manufacture of the goods they are selling, it depends on the "name" they have for themselves...
For me?.. I would much rather go for a branded battery from a company I KNOW does R&D into batteries than buy one from a company that does R&D into other stuff, and just uses batteries...

For instance, the battery on my car, a Toyota, finally gave out... after 8 yrs... thats pretty much good going for a car battery that should only last 4-5 years...
Replacement... the nice RAC man offered a "My Mum's" cheapo "Budget", or a RAC recommended 3yr warranty (By RAC) sealed-for-life....
If the RAC want to give a 3yr warranty, I want to trust them for that three years....
The warranty also reads that if any damage is caused by the battery in normal use, and the thing has not been mis-used, they will also make good any repairs caused by the battery....
I would have a look at the warranty supplied.... does it cover the camera if their battery explodes?...
If so, then is the question of Camera warranty invalid..??...
If the camera breaks for other reasons, if it is sent back, you would remove (all of) the batteries anyway for shipping, so how are they going to know which exact battery was in it on last use?...
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Old 01-12-2009, 17:31   #12 (permalink)
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Re: 3rd party batteries

I have been buying spare batteries, firstly for my Canon 350D, then 400D and now 40D and G10 from 7dayshop. I have never had one go wrong on me,
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