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  • Battery question - blm-1/123a

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    I have an Evolt-500 and Evolt-520. I've lost one of my BLM-1 batteries.

    So I've been using the white plastic battery holder with 3-123A batteries.

    Battery Holder (PS-LBH1 W)
    Item: #260230-410 http://olympusamerica.com/cpg_sectio...id=1192&ct=all

    Has anyone been using rechargeable 123A batteries?

    I've been considering buying a couple of battery holders, putting rechargeable 123A in them and charging them just as I would the BLM-1.

    My concern is that the BLM-1 may be discontinued. At least with the battery holder and 123As I'll have power. Rechargeables at least bring down the cost in the long run.

  • #2
    Re: Battery question - blm-1/123a

    Two questions. 1. What has led to to think Oly might discontinue the BLM-1? It's their basic 4/3 SLR battery and many, many cameras use it. 2. 123As? Why? Go over to Amazon and type BLM-1 into the search box. You'll get 10 or more options, most of them perfectly good. They start at about $6.00 which the last time I looked is a lot less than a bunch of 123As. I suspect even the cheap replacements will be fine, but if you're leery of them, the middle range $12-15 is OK. Remember Oly is NOT like Panny and third-party batteries work just fine. They may run down a slight bit faster and last for a bit less time, but the price is right. If you want the original it will set you back $41.70 w/free shipping.
    Steve
    __________________________________
    Please visit my lonely photos at http://sbob.zenfolio.com/

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    • #3
      Re: Battery question - blm-1/123a

      Discontinue - maybe just needless concern on my part. Guess I'm not up on battery usage.

      Cheaper alternatives: I've purchased three third party BLM-1 batteries. Each a different brand and none of them worth the money I paid for them. Two won't hold a charge anymore than 30 minutes. One would not hold a charge/was not chargeable after about four uses. It had a bad cell.

      With the battery holder, you can replace a cell that is bad or goes bad. You mentioned costs - some of the 123A rechargeables, I found after a google search, were as low as $3. If you buy a BLM-1 for $20 and a cell goes bad it can't be replaced (molded case) so you're out $20.

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      • #4
        Re: Battery question - blm-1/123a

        I've been using a "Digital Fox" generic for over a year and it still last about the same as the Oly. If you found "super cheap" 123A batteries how can you be certain that they won't behave any better than the generic BLM-1? The battery holder won't hold a charge as long as a BLM-1 and the rechargable 123A batteries will fail after a fair number of recharges. Just sounds like "penny wise and pound foolish" to me.

        Jeff

        Jeff
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        • #5
          Re: Battery question - blm-1/123a

          Originally posted by lucian View Post

          Cheaper alternatives: I've purchased three third party BLM-1 batteries. Each a different brand and none of them worth the money I paid for them. Two won't hold a charge anymore than 30 minutes. One would not hold a charge/was not chargeable after about four uses. It had a bad cell.

          With the battery holder, you can replace a cell that is bad or goes bad. You mentioned costs - some of the 123A rechargeables, I found after a google search, were as low as $3. If you buy a BLM-1 for $20 and a cell goes bad it can't be replaced (molded case) so you're out $20.
          I guess you made a point about not buying ebay batteries from China. There are some US companies that make these batteries that you have excellent recourse if they if fail quickly or fail to perform. I've had several extra batteries from them and they perform essentially the same as the Oly originals. And given the number of people here who use third-party BLM-1s I'd have to say you were very unlucky.

          Indeed, the only cheap rechargeable 123As I could find are Chinese made and I suspect sort of as good as the eBay BLM1s. I certainly would not buy them.
          Steve
          __________________________________
          Please visit my lonely photos at http://sbob.zenfolio.com/

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          • #6
            Re: Battery question - blm-1/123a

            I would like to say, that I own one BLM-1 made in China and it performs quite as well as Oly one (I did not try how many pictures I can take with it compared to Oly one, but I am using it in one of my bodies and I have not noticed any difference, so it is not that bad at all). It is labeled UNiROSS. Maybe not all bateries of this label are OK, maybe I am lucky, but I am sure this one is not typical "Chinese quality" stuff.
            On the other hand, I have never heard of original BLM-1 failing, for the price you will get something, that will serve for many years without any sign of failure... cannot say the same about experiments with 123A batteries...
            Regards, Pavel.

            E-1(x2) | ZD 14-45 | ZD 14-54 | ZD 40-150 Mk.1 | ZD 70-300 | FL-50 | Velbon Sherpa 750R
            M42(Pancolar 50/1.8, Pentacon 200/4)+ M42->4/3 reduction

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            • #7
              Re: Battery question - blm-1/123a

              One of my genuine Olympus BLM1 batteries says "made in china" ....
              Stephen - www.flickr.com/photos/argyllphotos
              Olympus OM-D E-M1, E-M5, Zenza Bronica, and an ever-changing nest of lenses

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              • #8
                Re: Battery question - blm-1/123a

                Just for the record...
                99% of the time I use BLM-1, three of them Olympus original, and one 3rd party (and this one holds about a 1/3rd of the originals charge).

                But I also have the plastic case with 3 cr123 always ready in the bag, and sometimes I use it, when I'm far from a plug to connect the charger.

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                • #9
                  Re: Battery question - blm-1/123a

                  Speaking of made in China. I have an E-Volt 500 and an E-Volt 520. Both of my Japanese Olympus cameras are "Made in China".

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                  • #10
                    Re: Battery question - blm-1/123a

                    Originally posted by lucian View Post
                    So I've been using the white plastic battery holder with 3-123A batteries.

                    Battery Holder (PS-LBH1 W)

                    My concern is that the BLM-1 may be discontinued. At least with the battery holder and 123As I'll have power. Rechargeables at least bring down the cost in the long run.
                    The BLM-1 will be discontinued and is replaced with the BLM-5 which is a part of the E-5 system, but can be used in the older models. Has to do with some laws and rules in some countries. The BLM-5 is safer in usage, however I never had problems with my BLM-1's. The LBH1 is probably made on my request because the Olympus E-1 (and now its successors) is a real go around camera for in the wild and trees don't have mains on board. At first Olympus was against, so I made some calculations which shows that it could be done from replaceable batteries. My original calculations were based on penlights (AA), the 123A battery is from Olympus and is a very nice solution which just can be dropped in the existing battery space. If its really done on my request I will never know, but that doesn't matter. Its now in the catalog.

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                    • #11
                      Re: Battery question - blm-1/123a

                      Originally posted by Joop View Post
                      The BLM-1 will be discontinued and is replaced with the BLM-5 which is a part of the E-5 system, but can be used in the older models. Has to do with some laws and rules in some countries. The BLM-5 is safer in usage, however I never had problems with my BLM-1's. The LBH1 is probably made on my request because the Olympus E-1 (and now its successors) is a real go around camera for in the wild and trees don't have mains on board. At first Olympus was against, so I made some calculations which shows that it could be done from replaceable batteries. My original calculations were based on penlights (AA), the 123A battery is from Olympus and is a very nice solution which just can be dropped in the existing battery space. If its really done on my request I will never know, but that doesn't matter. Its now in the catalog.
                      The BLM-5 is an update to the BLM-1 and has an extra contact for safety when charging. It can only be charged with the newer charger that has four contacts. But the E-5 is just as happy using BLM-1s as it only has three contacts in the battery chamber. BLM-5 batteries are also 100% compatible with Olympus cameras that take the BLM-1.

                      Ian
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