Watson third party W batteries - long term review

Tipton

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So I literally have 10 w batteries that I rotate through my two e mount cameras, a mix of native and third party. Since I haven't bought any new batteries since 2017, I think we're soon going to get a long term review for each of these brands.

Case in point: Watson brand e mount battery. I don't know when I bought this, it isn't in my Amazon orders, so I must have purchased at my local camera shop. Lately this battery has started started losing power rapidly, then claiming it has 0% power - while my camera continues to function fine for another half hour or so.

Overall, I think this battery currently has 1/2 the capacity of a new, native battery. So thumbs down on Watson.
 

davect01

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Good to know.

I have two Sony batteries and they are still the best. I have a Vivitar battery and it works but does not last as long. Not drastic, but enough that I notice.

I did buy a couple of other batteries that were garbage. Never fully charged and I struggled to get more than 75 shots. Got rid of them.
 

bdbits

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I have one "Xit" brand NP-FW50-style battery that drains quite rapidly but is inaccurate as the camera still goes for a while, or will show a huge increase in charge just by power cycling it. I picked it up somewhere along the way trading through bodies, so at least 3 years old. My Sony brand battery, on the other hand, is operating as well as it ever has and is likely the same age.

Sometimes, you do get what you pay for.
 

mnhoj

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Here's a test where the Watson did well. It's for a Fuji NPW126 but it's probably pretty close to a Sony NP FW50.
http://ultralightphotography.net/ge...g-you-wanted-to-know-about-np-w126-batteries/

I picked up a Green Extreme dual charger and two batteries on Adorama's deal of the day. I've purchased and used the GEs before without issue.
I have "extreme" confidence that I will receive excellent service from these. ( :
And if not, they were "extremely" cheap and I still have a nice dual charger with interchangeable plates if I should ever change bodies.
 

Richard Crowe

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As opposed to OEM Sony batteries, the several different brands of third party batteries I own generally do not hold their charges as long... However, my standard procedure is to tap off the charge of each battery before I go on a shoot! Therefore the lack of charge holding doesn't impact me the way it might...
 

WNG

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I have a pair of Watson batteries, bought in 2014 at B & H in NYC. Wasn't cheap at $20 ea. I've not cycled all my batteries equally, chose to concentrate use on cheaper sets of aftermarket units from Neewer and a Vivitar. These have all expired, with one Neewer exhibiting what you described. Fully charges quickly, discharges quickly in use, and the red empty batt icon is present although the camera continues to shoot a few dozen more shots.

Li-Ion batteries degrade in life if recharged to 100% each time. I suspect the reason why OEM Sony batteries last longer is due to them actually having more capacity and charged to under 100% of that capacity. This preserves longevity. While aftermarket batteries state they have greater mAH (although I doubt that), they are likely charged to 100% which is likely true because of the reduced energy capacity.
Thus they die sooner. Maybe last a year, while the OEM Sony battery continues to operate normally.

PS. My OEM Sony battery from 2014 is heavier than the Sony battery that came with my A7II in 2018. It's still operates fine.
 

Tipton

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  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #7
3rd party battery, long term report, 2 months later:

All of my 3rd party batteries have become unreliable in various ways, most exhibiting the behavior detailed in the OP. One, a Chillipower, refuses to charge above 78%.

All of my OEM Sony batteries seem to work fine, even though they are older and have more cycles on them.
 
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I had a total of 10 Sony OEM W batteries for the A7R2, A7 and NEX-6. Two of them came with the A7R2 in March 2016; I replaced those a year ago because their capacity was reduced to about 75 % and they started to drop suddenly from say 30 % to 0 when used in the camera. I ditched 6 older ones because their capacities were reduced significantly as well and they started to swell a bit.

I also bought 2 third-party batteries (Patona) for € 10 apiece, as opposed to € 40 for the OEM ones. One of them was DOA (dead-on-arrival), refused to be charged; returned it for a refund. The other one is used sparingly and works, although the charge percentage shown on the camera seems inconsistent; I'm weary of charging them without supervision, I'm afraid it might catch fire because I suspect the functionality of the battery's electronic circuit isn't adequate. No more third-party batteries for me.
 

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