Anyone use the aftermarket Olympus BLN-1 Batteries for OMD-EM5?

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by mvpusa, May 12, 2014.

  1. mvpusa

    mvpusa Mu-43 Rookie

    May 30, 2012
    New York
    Anyone use the aftermarket Olympus BLN-1 Batteries for OMD-EM5? How is your experience with them? I am looking for aftermarket batteries that can be recharged in the Olympus charger.
  2. HarryS

    HarryS Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jun 23, 2012
    Midwest, USA
    I have Progo batteries that charge in the Olympus charger. Whatever they did on these batteries to get them to work in the Olympus charger was somewhat flawed. They do not get fully charged, shutting off a few tents of a volt early, according to my voltmeter, I have to put them in a generic charger to get them to their full charge. Looking at amazon reviews for Progo, I see someone else has reported the same issue recently, so it seems nothing has changed. I have two, and the pair is still working after a year though.

  3. rhom

    rhom Mu-43 Rookie

    Jul 5, 2013
    Sacramento, CA
    Real Name:
    A number of posts here on suggested that the Progo battery sold on Amazon was the best of the generics, specifically concerning the charge capacity and that it has an integral chip that communicates with the EM5. On this basis, I bought one from Amazon several months ago to test before my upcoming fall trip to Europe. I already had two genuine BLN-1s, but I want to have three batteries for my EM5.

    Bottom Line, I am going to buy another Olympus BLN-1. If the Progo is the best of the generics, it has a ways to go. This battery just does not hold the same charge as a real BLN-1. Whether the reason is as stated by the previous poster, that the chip prevents the Olympus charger from fully charging this battery or if there is some other reason, the Progo delivers only about 50%-75% of the shots as compared to a fully charged BLN-1. Unacceptable to me for my needs.

    Hope that this helps.

  4. OzRay

    OzRay Mu-43 Legend

    Jan 29, 2010
    South Gippsland, Australia
    Real Name:
    Ray, not Oz
    I have a conspiracy theory when it comes to aftermarket batteries. With all the electronics in batteries and cameras today, I believe that the camera can identify an aftermarket battery and send false charge information to the user, amongst other things, so that the battery either discharges rapidly or appears to do so even if it has a lot more charge available. This discourages the use of aftermarket batteries without entirely blocking the use of aftermarket batteries, as I believe Sony (from memory) was doing with their cameras. In this way, the company doesn't appear evil in the eyes of the consumer, as they aren't aware that they are being fooled. :biggrin:
  5. christofp

    christofp Mu-43 Regular

    Jul 21, 2012
    I have used a "Ex-Pro® Olympus BLN-1, BLN1 [CHIPPED EXACT] High Power Plus+" battery for over a year in my EM5, works exactly as the Olympus one, the capacity is similar too.

    Earlier I had bought a cheap aftermarket battery with its own charger. Only 50% capacity, separate charger and the battery refused to work after 13 months.

    Because the chipped version worked so nice, I searched and bought two additional ExPro chipped batteries for my EM1 too.
  6. darosk

    darosk Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Apr 17, 2013
    Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia
    Real Name:
    I used a bunch of DSTE branded ones. They just don't seem to hold a charge very well. My OEM spare can be in storage for months, and when I need it, it always has close to a full charge (or thereabouts, anyway). The aftermarket ones were at 50% or less after a couple weeks of non-use. Disappointing, because I could always rely on the DSTE aftermarket LP-E6's on my old Canon DSLRs.

    It doesn't really matter in the end for me, I ended up selling the aftermarket batteries because I just plain didn't need that many spares.
  7. hazwing

    hazwing Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 25, 2012
    I'm interested to know, voltage does the progo charge up to in the olympus charger? I have the "upstart" brand, that only charge to ~8.0V (as opposed to ~8.6V with the olympus batteries).
  8. Vivalo

    Vivalo Olympus Loser

    Nov 16, 2010
    Two "Ex-Pro chipped exact" here too and they work and charge just like the original battery. It might be that they give only 70-90 percent of the originals capacity but they are still well worth their price. I've had zero issues using them for a year now.
  9. dhazeghi

    dhazeghi Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 6, 2010
    San Jose, CA
    Real Name:
    I don't believe any of the third party BLN-1 batteries will charge fully in the Olympus charger - they lack the necessary circuitry that the Olympus-branded BLN-1s have. Certainly my Wasabi-branded batteries don't. I decided to just use the generics since the generic charger itself is smaller (and takes DC in, so it can be powered from the car). Battery life seems to be just as good as my OEM battery.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  10. HarryS

    HarryS Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jun 23, 2012
    Midwest, USA
    Progos shut off around 8 volts, same as your "upstarts". Both are 8.4 volt batteries, while a real BLN1 is 8.6 volts.

    A Progo would catch on fire anyway if the Olympus charger could take it past 8.4 volts. They probably put in just enough circuitry to trick the Oly charger into accepting the Progo. Put in more to make charge to 8.4 volts in an Oly charger and it would no longer be a 8-10 dollar battery,
    • Like Like x 1
  11. Growltiger

    Growltiger Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Mar 26, 2014
    Some confusion above. I have a real BLN1 in my hand and it is 7.6V not 8.6V.

    I have two EZO Power BLN1 equivalents. They are 7.4V They charge OK in the Olympus charger.
    They seem to hold about half the charge for a quarter the cost. I now have two genuine ones and two EZO ones.
  12. HarryS

    HarryS Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jun 23, 2012
    Midwest, USA
    7.6 and 7.4 volts are the nominal voltages when the battery is under load and working in your camera. That is how they are labelled. When you measure them fresh out of the charger with nothing connected, that's the open circuit voltage, which should be 8.6 and 8.4 volts in this case.

    You might get more juice out of your EZO-power if you try a genric 7.4 volt charger. One amazon vendor that sells EZO-powers says "Please do not use OEM charger to charge this battery".

    I'm with poster Dhazegi. The Progos and others are only 8 dollar batteries, and I don't mind putting them into a generic charger to get longer use out of them.
  13. Kalli

    Kalli New to Mu-43

    Jul 3, 2011
    I hope it's okay that I latch onto this thread, since a couple of posters mention using Ex-Pro replacement batteries.

    I've been using DSTE batteries with my E-M5 since 2012 with acceptable results (at least considering the price), but I'm having a hard time finding them to buy now. I've looked around to see what's available and what people are saying on forums and I think I'll try an Ex-Pro battery. Question is, is it really worth it to get the "White Series" ones over the cheaper "Power Plus" ones?

    I'm not sure if the "Power Plus" batteries are the same as the "Exact Chipped" ones, but if so, do they work with both the Olympus charger and the third party/cheap knockoff ones?
  14. pdk42

    pdk42 One of the "Eh?" team

    Jan 11, 2013
    Leamington Spa, UK
    I've tried a lot of after market batteries - some which need their own charger and some which work in the Olympus charger. None of them deliver the same duration before needing recharging and none of them have lasted more than a year before they become useless. Personally I've given up and just buy the OEM version.
    • Agree Agree x 2
    • Like Like x 1
  15. Carbonman

    Carbonman Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jul 10, 2014
    Vancouver BC
    Real Name:
    I use both an original Olympus BLN-1 and a Hahnel HL-ON1 in my E-M1. I don't notice any difference between them. They look virtually identical and have exactly the same specifications on their labels.
  16. ashburtononline

    ashburtononline Mu-43 Veteran

    Jan 21, 2015
    New Zealand
    I rely on my cameras for my living so I wouldn't dare use a 3rd party battery. Some years I bought an EN-EL4 (?) 3rd Party for a Nikon D3 and it was total crap ..... it was REAL cheap but never again!
  17. ahinesdesign

    ahinesdesign Mu-43 Veteran

    Dec 6, 2011
    NC, USA
    Real Name:
    I had a couple of aftermarket batteries for EM5 when I first got the camera, but they stopped holding a charge at all after a few months. I can't recall the brand name on them anymore... Have gone with Olympus batteries since, its worth the extra cost to know they'll be a lot more reliable and charge correctly in the original charger.

    Had a few Power2000 batteries for the Panasonic G5 that worked better than the OE battery and charged correctly on the original charger. Have not tried their BLN-1 clone batteries, however...
  18. Vivalo

    Vivalo Olympus Loser

    Nov 16, 2010
    My two Ex-Pro Chipped Exact from 2013 are still working fine with Olympus charger and my new E-M5 mk2. And my estimate of around 70-90 percent of OEM capacity is still holding. They have been well worth their price. I just ordered Hähnel HL-ON1 because the E-M5 mk2 eats up batteries even faster than the mk1.
    • Appreciate Appreciate x 1
  19. Hazza

    Hazza Just Clicking

    Aug 10, 2013
    Huddersfield UK
    Real Name:
    I have a couple of the white X-Pro batteries and use them regularly in my E-M5 and E-M1. They don't last as long as the original battery but are still going strong after a couple of years so I don't feel short changed.
  20. manju69

    manju69 Mu-43 Veteran

    Jul 1, 2011
    Stroud, UK
    Real Name:
    I've used hahnel brand and have been totally satisfied with them.