Batteries for the OM-D EM-5

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by fredsh, Oct 22, 2013.

  1. fredsh

    fredsh Mu-43 Rookie

    Mar 27, 2010
    Long Island NY
    I would like some advice regarding the use of non-Olympus branded batteries. Generally I don't need a spare battery, but we're planning a vacation and I feel having a extra handy would be a good idea.
    I've checked out Amazon. and they have at least 3 brands, some that charge with the Olympus charger, and others that come with a charger. All are substantially cheaper then Olympus, and would be hard to pass up.
    Anyone out there with experience using off-brand batteries, I would like to know what you think.
    Thanks for your help.
  2. droidakty

    droidakty Mu-43 Regular

    May 29, 2012
    Toronto, Canada
    I just came back from a 3 week trip through the Mediterranean. From my experience, there were days when I went through 3 batteries a day. It was a cruise so we had long days 7am to past midnight. I have a pair of Wasabi brand batteries and a pair of Original Olympus batteries. The OEM batteries lasted longer than the Wasabi batteries and the OEM battery seem to charge faster on the OEM charger compared to the Wasabi.

    Sent from my SGH-I467M using Mu-43 mobile app
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  3. wclavey

    wclavey Mu-43 Regular Subscribing Member

    Sep 27, 2012
    Houston, TX
    I have OEM batteries and Wasabi batteries.

    For my style of shooting, I find that the Wasabi batteries do not last as long as the OEM batteries, just as droidakty reported. I typically get ~75 pictures on a Wasabi battery and 100+ on the OEM battery - - and I do a lot of manual focus on a tripod with Live View or the magnified image in the EVF. When I am at home, I charge the OEM batteries on the OEM charger and the Wasabi batteries on the Wasabi charger, but once I am on the road, I charge them all on the Wasabi chargers.

    These results are not consistent with the performance I got on my E-30, where the Wasabi batteries consistently out-performed the OEM batteries.
  4. darcius1

    darcius1 Mu-43 Regular

    Jan 6, 2013
    Sandwich Isles
    Have wasabi also. A great value.
  5. Mikefellh

    Mikefellh Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jun 7, 2012
    Toronto, Canada
    Suggest you go through the posts that have been written since the E-M5 was released...there has been a million threads asking the same questions already responded to.

    If I was a new E-M5 user that's what I would do, and not just the threads about third party batteries but ALL the E-M5 topics, certainly before posting a new topic that may have already been asked and answered several times.

    But to post my opinion one more time, I avoid third party batteries like the plague...there have been reports of swelling inside the body of the camera because of overheating due to cheaper materials and tend to get stuck in the camera. As such all my batteries are Olympus and I've never had that issue. My thinking is you spent so much on the camera, why cheapen out on the batteries.
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  6. mattia

    mattia Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 3, 2012
    The Netherlands
    I have some eBay cheapie E-M5 batteries (that come with a seperate charger) that last almost as long as the OEM that came with the camera. I have to ask, though - 100 shots on a single charge? I usually get 300+, and have even gotten more when I was being super paranoid (had no working charger on holiday, so almost only used the EVF and never, ever chimped) I got over 400 shots. But 100 is way out from what I'm used to.

    When I travel I have at least 3 batteries per camera and preferably at least two cameras (these days usually an MFT camera (was the E-M5, got stolen, will be E-M1) and an RX100 for the pocket-friendly size)

    For the simple reason that I've already spent all that cash on the camera and would rather spend the rest on other stuff? I've used third party batteries for all of my cameras (canon DSLRs, GF2, E-M5, RX100) for years without trouble. The simple reality is that I can get 3 batteries with a spare charger for the E-M1 for a mere 22 euros, shipped and delivered. Or spend 180 euros on three original Olympus batteries.
  7. fdifulco

    fdifulco Mu-43 Veteran

    Nov 28, 2011
    New Orleans, Louisiana
    good idea to have spares. I have the Wasabi (2) and (2) Oly's. when i use live view or manual focus zoom the Oly last longer. the Wasabi do charge up fast
  8. darosk

    darosk Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Apr 17, 2013
    Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia
    I currently have 2 OEM and 3 third-party BLN-1's. I used third parties for 6 years on my Canon DSLRs with no hitch, no bulging, no exploding. People say nice things about Wasabi, but I use stuff I can get my hands on (currently, DSTE brand). If you can afford it, just get the OEMs. For some people, the peace of mind is worth buying OEM. I would agree, it's a nice feeling indeed. Just remember, you can get 'dud' OEM products as well - I've heard more than a few stories about Original batteries doing the bulge (not Olympus, but Canon/Nikon). You pay 5-10 times the price of a knock-off in the hope that the big boy companies are doing better quality control. In general that's true - but it's not a 100% guarantee.
  9. darcius1

    darcius1 Mu-43 Regular

    Jan 6, 2013
    Sandwich Isles
    Getting over 300 shots on the wasabi also
  10. dhazeghi

    dhazeghi Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Aug 6, 2010
    San Jose, CA
    Note that 3rd party batteries don't charge in the Oly charger, but the Oly batteries do generally charge in the 3rd party chargers. As to bulging I've seen a lot of it (5 out of 6 of my 3rd party batteries). Personally, I'd go with OEM batteries after my experience.
  11. HarryS

    HarryS Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jun 23, 2012
    Midwest, USA
    I have 5 aftermarket BLN-1 batteries. Three charge in Olympus charger. One was EZO-max, which died after a few months. The other two are branded "Progo" . The remaining two are no-names which require their own charger. Aside from the crappy EZO-max, the other four work fine. I haven't checked capacity.

    For my PEN, I have run into BLS-1 batteries that did not fit right out of box and needed some filing, and one did swell up. That comes with $8 batteries. Those are the risks.
  12. fredsh

    fredsh Mu-43 Rookie

    Mar 27, 2010
    Long Island NY
    Well I just had my week's vacation, using 3 batteries; 2 Wasabi and one Olympus. And there's no question that the Olympus delivers more pictures. But having said that, I barely get 200 pictures from the Olympus,and perhaps 70 to 80 from the Wasabi!
    Mind you, I do "chimp", and I do use live view, but I don't think I do these things in excess at all! And frankly, and okay,- this is me bring stubborn, you should be able use a feature without such excessive battery drain.
    There was a post some months ago that instructed one on how to set up the camera for the most economical power use, and did that. Just out of curiosity, those of you that get 300 or more pictures, is that a picture-taking session where the camera is always on, or is that over a period of time, where you power off the camera?
    I wonder if that would make a difference?
  13. KBeezie

    KBeezie Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 15, 2012
    Grand Rapids, Mi
    Karl Blessing
    Bumping this because it popped up in my google search when talking about battery voltages and such.

    Most of the generics appear to be 7.4v as opposed to Olympus' OEM 7.6v, that in itself isn't that big a deal except if you try to charge a 7.4v battery in an Olympus charger, it won't charge fully (likewise an Olympus battery in a 7.4v generic charger will be undercharged too).

    However both of the Wasabi batteries I have that uses Japanese cells (Casing made in China, battery cell made in Japan), are 7.6v and not 7.4v like most generics, so they do work fully in an olympus charger. Likewise the Wasabi chargers while almost identical looking to many of the generics out there, charge to 7.6v, meaning you could use original OEM batteries in that charger as well.

    In a nutshell, if you go generic, you want to stick with the same generic charger meant for that voltage, or you risk undercharging the battery below their actual capacity. This is of course assuming said brand is actually truthful about what is within the casing (some of the 7.4v cells are made in China and are a bit lower than their advertised mAh, even lower if you don't put them into the right charger to fully charge them).

    My personal experience with two Wasabi batteries I received used along with a used E-M5 (which only had about 2,000 shutter clicks on it) have been excellent, they last quite a bit longer than my OEMs (getting easily over 400 shots off the Wasabi versus around 350 off the OEM). Also when I was doing time lapse photography (roughly everything set manually, no autofocus, etc, LCD turned off and switched to the EVF, and using an intervalometer), over 850 shots fired off before the battery indicator showed the 50% mark (4 second exposure, shot every 10 seconds).
    • Informative Informative x 4
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