Warning about G1 X 3rd party batteries

Started Feb 26, 2012 | Discussions
John Telleria
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Warning about G1 X 3rd party batteries
Feb 26, 2012

I would highly recommend picking up 1 or 2 extra batteries for the G1 X as this camera will eat through batteries much quicker than my G11 did, expecially if you shoot any HD video. If you were considering buying cheaper 3rd party NB-10L Li-ion batteries instead of the genuine Canon NB-10L, you may want to reconsider. I ordered two CS Power brand 1200mAh NB-10L replacement batteries from Amazon for my G1 X. With shipping, I paid about $10 each, 1/3 the price of the Canon NB-10L. When I received the batteries a few days ago, I immediately went to recharge them with the battery charger that came with the G1 X (Canon charger model CB-2LCE). The battery charger indicated both batteries were already fully charged. So I packed them in the camera bag thinking they were already good to go. When I went to use them a couple nights ago after my Canon NB-10L battery ran out, I quickly realized both CS Power batteries were actually nowhere near fully charged. I took probably no more than 25 shots with the first battery before the low battery indicator came on. The 2nd battery didn't last much longer. When I got home and tried to recharge them, the Canon charger was STILL indicating both batteries were fully charged even though they were nearly fully discharged! And because the charger thinks the batteries are fully charged, it won't start a charging cycle. I left one of the two batteries in the charger for 3 hours and it was still very low on charge when I tried using it in the camera. So obviously the G1 X battery charger has issues with 3rd party batteries. That's not to say it won't work with any 3rd party knock-off battery. I just know it won't work with CS Power brand. Fortunately I happen to have a Lenmar All-in-One universal battery charger that will charge most digital camera and camcorder Li-ion batteries. I was able to fully charge both CS Power batteries with it. Once fully charged, they last just as long as the Canon battery. So I'll end up keeping them as I do have way to charge them. But if I didn't already have the Lenmar charger, I would have sent them back for a refund and bought a genuine Canon battery.

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Dale Buhanan
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Re: Warning about G1 X 3rd party batteries
In reply to John Telleria, Feb 26, 2012

Interesting story, John, and I have no explanation of how or why that could happen to you. I bought two of the very same CS 1200 MA NB-10L batteries from Amazon and mine work and charge in the Canon charger just like the originals do. They seem to be excellent batteries and excellent value. I don't have any idea why yours don't work. Very odd indeed. Mine both work perfectly and charge perfectly to full capacity.

John Telleria wrote:

I would highly recommend picking up 1 or 2 extra batteries for the G1 X as this camera will eat through batteries much quicker than my G11 did, expecially if you shoot any HD video. If you were considering buying cheaper 3rd party NB-10L Li-ion batteries instead of the genuine Canon NB-10L, you may want to reconsider. I ordered two CS Power brand 1200mAh NB-10L replacement batteries from Amazon for my G1 X. With shipping, I paid about $10 each, 1/3 the price of the Canon NB-10L. When I received the batteries a few days ago, I immediately went to recharge them with the battery charger that came with the G1 X (Canon charger model CB-2LCE). The battery charger indicated both batteries were already fully charged. So I packed them in the camera bag thinking they were already good to go. When I went to use them a couple nights ago after my Canon NB-10L battery ran out, I quickly realized both CS Power batteries were actually nowhere near fully charged. I took probably no more than 25 shots with the first battery before the low battery indicator came on. The 2nd battery didn't last much longer. When I got home and tried to recharge them, the Canon charger was STILL indicating both batteries were fully charged even though they were nearly fully discharged! And because the charger thinks the batteries are fully charged, it won't recharge them. I left one of the two batteries in the charger for 3 hours and it was still very low on charge when I tried using it in the camera. So obviously the battery charger that comes with the G1 X has issues with 3rd party batteries. That's not to say it won't work with any 3rd party knock-off battery. I just know it won't work with CS Power brand. Fortunately I happen to have a Lenmar All-in-One universal battery charger that will charge most digital camera and camcorder Li-ion batteries. I was able to fully charge both CS Power batteries with it. Once fully charged, they last just as long as the Canon battery. So I'll end up keeping them as I do have way to charge them. But if I didn't already have the Lenmar charger, I would have sent them back for a refund and bought a genuine Canon battery.

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bronson
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Re: Warning about G1 X 3rd party batteries
In reply to Dale Buhanan, Feb 26, 2012

I ordered a 3rd party battery for a similar discount for my G3 from Batterybarn.com and not only did the battery give me a better charge, it lasted longer too.

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Marco Nero
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Only FOOLS buy 3rd Party Batteries for expensive electronics...
In reply to bronson, Feb 26, 2012

Lithium batteries are quite dangerous, the batteries manufactured on the cheap are even more so. Anyone buying cheap batteries to put inside expensive electronics is foolish. Saving a few dollars here and there when it comes to such batteries is potentially harmful to yourself and those around you. I have absolutely NO intention of buying such batteries for use with my own G1X or DSLRs.

Going back a few years, I remember two incidents here where homes were literally burned to the ground from 3rd Party (Made in China) batteries. One was in my own city and a warning went out to the camera stores here. The battery was in an Olympus camera when it overheated and burst into flames, completely destroying the home it was in.

You can't mess round with Li-Ion batteries (they can overheat and literally explode) and China has the worst track record for producing cheap & nasty products like these with scant regard to quality control. I don't doubt that some manufacturers get their batteries sourced from China but it may be worth a second glance before buying cheap batteries on eBay etc.

Most Lithium battery fires from CAMERAS today are triggered when the battery sustains or builds up too much heat which leads to what the FAA refer to as "Thermal Runaway". The batteries were found to explode with enough force to lift the locked lids on their containers and to cause considerable damage to the cargo hold of aircraft (hence you must now carry Li-Ion batteries on your carry-on luggage nowadays). An exploding Li-Ion battery was believed to have caused the downing of a United parcels Service Plane in Dubai recently which killed two pilots. Lithium ion batteries are also flammable and capable of self-igniting and they can generate temperatures very close to the melting point of aluminum. In recent years we have seen fires caused by exploding iPhone lithium batteries, hairdryer lithium batteries and even numerous camera lithium batteries. Some were OEM but many (most?) were 3rd party batteries. Many of the fires occurred when uninstalled batteries exploded - which means they don't have to be inside the camera to pose a threat.

Some examples I found online:

  • From the FDA: "Lithium metal batteries, the kind normally used in watches and cameras , for example, can create explosions forceful enough to damage cargo compartments."

  • "Sprinklers were set off in the basement of Humphreys Hall by a fire in the SITTV studio. The fire originated in the studio storage room and was started when a charging camera battery exploded and ignited nearby debris."

  • "Robby Gordon was again the best car but lost an almost certain victory when the in-car camera battery exploded and started a fire."

I think it's tempting to buy cheaper batteries that are not OEM but in this case, it's not worth the risk posed. You do get what you pay for. I've written about this many years ago here on DPreview and I see nothing has changed over time.

Here's a quaint video showing the force of a SMALL Lithium Po battery installed in a Laptop computer that is deliberately overheated via an electrical charge: The reaction is about the same with the larger Lithium-Ion batteries for cameras.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ixIOEPnsgbI&context=C3d1f862ADOEgsToPDskI1jGEvw4f3kDWOFxea_ZdE
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Paul De Bra
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Thanks for the warning. I didn't know that!
In reply to Marco Nero, Feb 26, 2012

And I'm probably not the only one either!

I have used 3rd party batteries, but not the very cheap ones, but Lenmar for instance. I had mixed results. The Lenmar I got for my Drebel/300D 8 years ago lasted longer than the Canon battery. The Lenmar I got for my 450D lasts only about half as long. Not worth the risk for a small saving if you consider the fire hazard.

Of course the genuine batteries are probably also made in China so I don't know how much safer they are.

At least I will now make sure I always have batteries in my carry-on bag, never in checked luggage.

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Marco Nero
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Re: Thanks for the warning. I didn't know that!
In reply to Paul De Bra, Feb 26, 2012

I will apologize for using the word "fools" in the title or my response but it seemed the right word and I'm hoping people will at least take a look at the thread rather than pass it over. I've bought 3rd party batteries from China before for a mobile phone but after a couple of interesting confrontations during the shipping process, it dawned on me just how dangerous they can be and you don't even have to mishandle them in order to end up with a disaster. I an involved with a manufacturer that makes its own Li-Ion batteries and we had to seek UN approval to be able to list it for safe transport. It still didn't stop all the major shipping companies for restricting our shipping. The Chinese attempted to make a replica of the custom battery and several reports came in from people who bought them on Ebay who claimed it damaged their equipment.

If you Canon camera is damaged by a 3rd party battery, it will not be possible to seek reimbursement via a warranty claim.

If you're using a major brand-name product, try to buy the batteries they themselves either supply or recommend. The 3rd party batteries from China have often been found to have been manufactured poorly. If the sensor-chip inside the battery (that tells the charger when the battery is full or partially charged ) is inferior or fails, you've got a "hot potato" on your hands. Same chip almost always fails if you accidentally put your battery through the wash by accident. Happened to me once with a legitimate Canon battery for an IXUS and it just continued to charge and heat up so I disposed of it.

Just sayin'. Hope it's of interest to someone.

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Stephenbw
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Re: Warning about G1 X 3rd party batteries
In reply to John Telleria, Feb 26, 2012

I don't believe all third party batteries are the same and I don't buy the cheapest available, but the cheaper ones manufactured by established companies.

When I bought my G11 from a reputable camera specialist the owner recommended, and sold me a Delkin spare battery for it. I have had no problems at all in the 2 years I've been using it. Similarly I bought a Uniross spare for my X100 and have had no issues with that either.

I do however treat these batteries as spares and not replacememts , i.e. I only use them when original battery dies and rarely drain them as I replace the original as soon as it is recharged.
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gail
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Re: Warning about G1 X 3rd party batteries
In reply to Stephenbw, Feb 26, 2012

Stephenbw wrote:

I don't believe all third party batteries are the same

I agree.

SterlingTEX, for example, offers reasonably priced camera batteries made in Japan. If you look at the companies they supply, a SterlingTex battery is probably in a product you own.

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AdamT
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Theres a Balance
In reply to John Telleria, Feb 26, 2012

There's a balance between using absolute junk dangerous batteries and being ripped off to hell and back by the OEM - Remember that Canon's Original batteries are Made in CHINA too !! ..

Sticking with well known makes such as Ansmann, Hahnel, Energizer etc treads a good path between being Hosed by Canon and having your camera hosed by dangerous cells .

My favourite source is USED Original batteries on E-Bay . I look out for them regularily as people drop cameras, get them soaked etc and sell off the OEM accessories, My G10 ones cost less than an Ansmann or Hahnel and are newer than my G10 one due to being from a G11 and SX30 (The sellers killed the cameras) .

OK so far with the G1X batts, only the SX40 uses the same batt (Changing from the NB7L to the 10 was no more than utter greed on Canon's part like the Batt change from 500D to 550D was) but it won't be long before someone drops or soaks their SX40 .

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Lenscraft
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Re: Only FOOLS buy 3rd Party Batteries for expensive electronics...
In reply to Marco Nero, Feb 26, 2012

The Power2000 battery seems to be very highly rated on Amazon. ( http://amzn.to/NB-10L ) If it were prone to explosions, don't you think that this would have been reported?

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MNwild
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Re: Only FOOLS buy 3rd Party Batteries for expensive electronics...
In reply to Lenscraft, Feb 26, 2012
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This is the likely reason...
In reply to John Telleria, Feb 26, 2012

I have a couple of Canon dslr's and have been using Sterlingtek batteries, as well as the original Canon's. The OP wrote of a problem with his non-Canon batteries, and I think I may have a handle on why he is having problems based on my similar experience.

Canon batteries have an electronic chip in them which communicates with the Canon charger. Canon chargers will properly recharge batteries which have the proper chip, but are deliberately engineered to not recharge batteries without a similar chip. Hence, Canon chargers usually reliably recharge only Canon batteries.

SterlingTek also supplies chargers for their batteries which will reliably recharge both their batteries AND Canon batteries. They sell these chargers for a pittance compared to the Canon charger. They are also smaller, and have a built-in flashlight, which is sometimes handy. So, if you buy SterlingTek batteries, also pick up a couple of their chargers and Bob's your uncle.
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nolten
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No problems with my Power 2000s
In reply to Lenscraft, Feb 26, 2012

I've been using Power 2000 batteries as spares for my G10 since it was new. So far they have behaved as well as the original Canon battery that came with the G10. Too bad the G1X uses lower capacity batteries, but I'll order some spare Power 2000s to go with it as well.

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gingerbaker
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Color me a fool, then...
In reply to Marco Nero, Feb 26, 2012

I, and tens of thousandths of other photographers, have been using SterlingTek batteries in our Canon dslr's for many years with essentially no problems.

I may be a fool in other areas, but this is not one of them.
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Lenscraft
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Re: This is the likely reason...
In reply to gingerbaker, Feb 26, 2012

I visited the SterlingTek site, but didn't see any NB-10L compatible batteries. Do they make these?

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mcshan
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Re: Warning about G1 X 3rd party batteries
In reply to John Telleria, Feb 26, 2012

Batteries I have ordered from Boxwave have always worked great for me. I have never tried the cheapo batteries in ebay.

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Len_Gee
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Re: Warning about G1 X 3rd party batteries
In reply to John Telleria, Feb 26, 2012

Greetings,

Good to know.

Thanks for posting the info.

I will stick with the Canon OEM batteries.

Regards.

John Telleria wrote:

I would highly recommend picking up 1 or 2 extra batteries for the G1 X as this camera will eat through batteries much quicker than my G11 did, expecially if you shoot any HD video. If you were considering buying cheaper 3rd party NB-10L Li-ion batteries instead of the genuine Canon NB-10L, you may want to reconsider. I ordered two CS Power brand 1200mAh NB-10L replacement batteries from Amazon for my G1 X. With shipping, I paid about $10 each, 1/3 the price of the Canon NB-10L. When I received the batteries a few days ago, I immediately went to recharge them with the battery charger that came with the G1 X (Canon charger model CB-2LCE). The battery charger indicated both batteries were already fully charged. So I packed them in the camera bag thinking they were already good to go. When I went to use them a couple nights ago after my Canon NB-10L battery ran out, I quickly realized both CS Power batteries were actually nowhere near fully charged. I took probably no more than 25 shots with the first battery before the low battery indicator came on. The 2nd battery didn't last much longer. When I got home and tried to recharge them, the Canon charger was STILL indicating both batteries were fully charged even though they were nearly fully discharged! And because the charger thinks the batteries are fully charged, it won't start a charging cycle. I left one of the two batteries in the charger for 3 hours and it was still very low on charge when I tried using it in the camera. So obviously the G1 X battery charger has issues with 3rd party batteries. That's not to say it won't work with any 3rd party knock-off battery. I just know it won't work with CS Power brand. Fortunately I happen to have a Lenmar All-in-One universal battery charger that will charge most digital camera and camcorder Li-ion batteries. I was able to fully charge both CS Power batteries with it. Once fully charged, they last just as long as the Canon battery. So I'll end up keeping them as I do have way to charge them. But if I didn't already have the Lenmar charger, I would have sent them back for a refund and bought a genuine Canon battery.

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Len_Gee
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Re: Warning about G1 X 3rd party batteries
In reply to Len_Gee, Feb 27, 2012

Greetings,

Doesn't using non-OEM batteries void the camera warranty if there is resulting damage caused by using 3rd party batteries?

A couple of years back, I bought a couple of cheap Chinese made batteries for a Nikon Coolpix P&S.

One overheated, and exploded while it was being charged. Scared the living poop out of me.

Now, I only buy OEM batteries. I don't want to be penny wise and pound foolish by buying cheap batteries to put in my expensive cameras.

Looking forward to getting my G1X next month.

Why does the G1X go through so many batteries so fast? Is it the LCD or focusing motor for the lens?

Looks like I'll need to order a few more OEM batteries and an extra charger as well.

Regards.

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Mark B.
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blanket statement
In reply to Marco Nero, Feb 27, 2012

Blanket statements are useless. I used third party batteries (Sterling Tek) for many years - from about 2001 until 2009 when I got a 7D and it used a different battery than the previous xxD bodies. Never once had a problem, and I was using them from the very beginning.

Mark

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Lenscraft
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Re: blanket statement
In reply to Mark B., Feb 27, 2012

Mark B. wrote:

Blanket statements are useless.

LOL

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