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02-17-2017, 11:42 AM   #1
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Wasabi Power D-Li90 - Losing capacity after a year

I bought the 2-pack Wasabi Power D-Li90 from Amazon on February 26, 2016.

They've been great for the last year; noticeably shorter life than the OEM battery, but that's expected for 10$ a piece.

However, it hasn't even been a year of owning these and last night I noticed the Wasabi batteries are losing capacity it seems...

I only charge my batteries on the Pentax OEM charger, it takes longer but the batteries don't heat up as much as with the Wasabi charger.

I fully charged one of the Wasabi batteries last night, plugged it into my K-3ii and the battery indicator showed yellow - halfway marker.

I thought maybe I didn't charge it all the way, so popped the batter back in the charger and it lit up green for about a minute then went off, indicating it was fully charged.
I continued with charging the other Wasabi and my OEM battery on this same charger.

One of the Wasabi batteries shows Yellow - 2/4 charge.
The other Wasabi battery shows Green - 3/4 charge.
The OEM Pentax battery shows Green - 4/4 charge

12 months seems like a very short lifespan to already have drop off on these batteries.
Granted, they are only 10$ a piece. So is this something I should get used to?

The Pentax OEM battery is dated 2012 01 on the back. So if I can get 5+ years from an OEM battery, or 1 year from a Wasabi battery, the price difference is a moot point...


Thoughts?

Is there a better third party battery out there?

I typically need all 3 batteries for a continuous 3-hour shoot using the D-BG5 grip.

I'd prefer not to spend $50 a piece for OEM batteries, unless that's honestly the smartest route to go?


Last edited by UserAccessDenied; 02-17-2017 at 11:54 AM.
02-17-2017, 11:56 AM   #2
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Mine are running strong at three years out. Any idea how many cycles you've put them through?
02-17-2017, 12:04 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by Quartermaster James Quote
Mine are running strong at three years out. Any idea how many cycles you've put them through?
uhhh I have no idea...

I shoot probably twice a week minimum.
I'd say 100 cycles each would be generously estimating.

I started noticing them dying faster than the OEM battery a few months ago.
Without looking at the battery installed in the grip, or the body, I could tell which was the OEM.
The Wasabi's were great when they were new! Almost insignificant difference between them and the OEM.

It's pretty bad now though...
02-17-2017, 12:22 PM   #4
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I've found even with genuine batteries the Pentax charger can give misleading information.

More than once I've put a battery in, light goes out, taken it out, put it back, etc, and only after 5 or more insertions has the charger actually shown it's continuing to charge after a few minutes.

02-17-2017, 12:27 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by JohnX Quote
I've found even with genuine batteries the Pentax charger can give misleading information.

More than once I've put a battery in, light goes out, taken it out, put it back, etc, and only after 5 or more insertions has the charger actually shown it's continuing to charge after a few minutes.
Interesting...
Perhaps I'll try it again on the charger.

I actually thought about buying one of these:
https://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/controller/home?O=&sku=837324&Q=&A=details

kind of expensive, but I like the idea of the digital readout. Just wonder how accurate it is...
02-17-2017, 12:38 PM - 2 Likes   #6
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Wasabi seems to have a good reputation here on PF. I've got two Wasabis that are still going strong after 4 years.

But there's always a chance of getting a defective one or one that sat on the shelf for too long.

The other possible causes of premature death include:
1. Running the battery down to zero charge and trying to get "one last shot" out of a dying battery.
2. Leaving a discharged battery sitting around for weeks or months before recharging it.
3. Storing/charging/using the battery at prolonged high temperatures.
3. Charging at a higher voltage (this increases the number of shots you get from that charge cycle but drastically reduces the number charge cycles the battery will deliver)
02-17-2017, 12:46 PM   #7
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I don't know about the batteries, but there are certainly better chargers out there.

02-17-2017, 12:49 PM - 2 Likes   #8
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Wasabi batteries have a 3-year warranty. Contact your seller for replacements. FWIW, your Pentax-brand charger is preferred to the quick charger sometimes bundled with Wasabi batteries. A graduated charge is preferable. Longevity with Li-ion batteries is not particularly clear-cut. The link below may be helpful:

http://batteryuniversity.com/learn/article/how_to_prolong_lithium_based_batteries


Steve

(...have two Wasabi LI90 replacements that are still going strong after almost three years, though I would not be surprised if they were to start getting wimpy...)

Last edited by stevebrot; 02-17-2017 at 12:59 PM.
02-17-2017, 01:39 PM   #9
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I have yet to have a Pentax battery die on me, but I did have a house brand replacement for my K-20 suffer sudden death after a year or so, so I have stuck with the originals since. I have batteries dating back to my K-7 from 2010 that still hold a decent charge and work well. I'm not familiar with the Wasabi batteries or chargers.
02-17-2017, 01:45 PM   #10
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before you give up try the wasabi charger
I charge my cells with their specific charger because of a similar difficulty
02-17-2017, 03:02 PM   #11
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For $50 Id go with OEM in a heartbeat everytime.. they are 99 euros here.. Oldest one Ive got is from 2011 still going strong. But there is no way in hell i would pay 99 euros for two 18500 cells. I bought a 15 euro no-name battery once for my K-5 locally and it was as good as OEM.. I sold the K-5 and that battery to my co-worker a year ago and he still hasnt complained. I guess its still good..

---------- Post added 18-02-17 at 00:15 ----------

I forgot.. I also once bought a 8 euro battery for K-5 from DealExtreme (China?).. lasted a year and it was dead. Anyway.. you get what you pay for but sometimes you get more if youre lucky .
02-17-2017, 03:29 PM   #12
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My K-3 is too new to let me know how well a Promaster 4996 will last. I bought it for my grip because the shop didn't have Pentax branded batteries in stock. The two Pentax branded batteries I got with my K10D in 2007 lasted through last November using the Pentax charger. In 2013 I got two weeks of shooting out of the two when I forgot the charger at home. Some 4,000 exposures if I remember correctly.
02-17-2017, 03:42 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by JohnX Quote
I've found even with genuine batteries the Pentax charger can give misleading information.
More than once I've put a battery in, light goes out, taken it out, put it back, etc, and only after 5 or more insertions has the charger actually shown it's continuing to charge after a few minutes.
Same here. Sometimes the charger says it has finished charging, but to me it seems too quick. I can often re-insert the same battery, and have the charging happily continue for a decent stretch again.

It may be a battery issue, a charger issue, or the condition of the contacts on either.
02-23-2017, 06:44 AM - 1 Like   #14
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Update:
I emailed Blue Nook - the company that owns Wasabi Battery - they are shipping me two new replacement batteries. I had to pay $6 for shipping, which I'm not terribly concerned about.
Though, these batteries are typically only $9-$10 a piece. So I see it as they just gave me a 75% off coupon...

I'll send these two new batteries through the test. If they fail to hold up after a year I'm off to purchasing all OEM batteries moving forward.
02-25-2017, 05:35 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by UserAccessDenied Quote
I bought the 2-pack Wasabi Power D-Li90 from Amazon on February 26, 2016.

They've been great for the last year; noticeably shorter life than the OEM battery, but that's expected for 10$ a piece.

The Pentax OEM battery is dated 2012 01 on the back. So if I can get 5+ years from an OEM battery, or 1 year from a Wasabi battery, the price difference is a moot point...

Thoughts?
One of the things I have been noticing with LiON batteries in general is that you can often find replacements with greater storage than the OEM units for much less. These are not fakes (well the better ones are not). However, try to find a spec listed in the advertising for rated re-charge cycles. It is a rarity. The marketing focus is strictly on the mah capacity. I am coming to realize there is a good reason. The rechargeability is often less and all too often much less than the OEM battery.

Is this a bad thing? Not necessarily. It depends on how you use your camera. Anybody who needs a greater number of clicks within a single shooting session will appreciate the greater capacity and not care that batteries have to be replaced more frequently. Folks who rarely exhaust a battery between charging opportunities, might prefer to have batteries that can be charged more times before they are worn out.
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