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  1. #1

    cowbrain's Avatar
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    Generic Macbook batteries (old type)
    Hello,

    My friend bought a Macbook Air today - and she's giving me her old Macbook (white), when the new one arrives. Ideal! My daughter needs a laptop for University and this will fit the bill nicely.

    This old white Macbook works pretty well - but needs a new battery (old battery is completely dead, Macbook only works on power lead)

    I see that Apple still sells these batteries for 100 (UK).
    I also see generic replacement batteries on eBay (etc) for around 20.

    If I was a rich man and had 100 spare, there'd be no question here. But I'm not and a saving of 80 (or so) would be very useful.
    I've searched the forum but not found any specific answer which resolves this for me.
    Is it a false economy? Will I buy the cheap battery and end up blowing 100 on the real thing a couple of weeks later.
    Or, are batteries much of a muchness, these days?

    (Also see some batteries in the middle price range - around 40 - 60. Wondering if these are the same as the cheaper ones, or ?)

    Probably got a week, or so, to make my decision.
    All advice and suggestions welcome.
    Thanks, CB
    MBP 2.9GHz i7, 16GB DDR(Crucial), 512GB SSD (Crucial M550) OSX 10.11.5
    iPhone 4S

  2. #2

    chscag's Avatar
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    You need to consider how much use your daughter can get from an older white MacBook. Is it in good condition and can it run the latest version of OS X (Mountain Lion)? If it's only a temporary use machine until she or you can afford something better, go for the 20 battery rather than the Apple one for 100. If it's in very good condition and you feel it will keep running for several more years, then buy the Apple battery.

  3. #3

    pigoo3's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cowbrain View Post

    I see that Apple still sells these batteries for 100 (UK).
    I also see generic replacement batteries on eBay (etc) for around 20.

    If I was a rich man and had 100 spare, there'd be no question here. But I'm not and a saving of 80 (or so) would be very useful.
    I think that you know the answer! If the 20 battery's were as good as the 100 ones from Apple...no one would buy the Apple battery's.

    I think that with the 20 battery's...they basically don't have as long a runtime on a single charge.

    The problem is...we usually hear more from folks having problems than we do from folks who are satisfied. So there may be folks out there that have had success with the 20 battery's...we just don't hear from many of them.

    I still think that you get what you pay for. And 20 for a battery that Apple sells for 100 would seem to be a bit risky.

    Here are some battery's from OWC (a trusted supplier). It's a US supplier...and the price is somewhat lower than Apple at $89 vs. $129 (Apple):

    MacBook 13" White Laptop Battery High Capacity by NewerTech for all MacBook 13" 'White' models

    HTH,

    - Nick
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
    - Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some slow computer tips: Speedup
    - Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
    - Apple Battery Info. Battery

  4. #4

    cowbrain's Avatar
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    Thanks for fast replies.

    chscag: Good point. This is a completely unexpected windfall, so I'm winning whichever way it swings. Had a quick look at it today, has an intel core duo 2ghz, 2GB ram, 250gb hdd, running Leopard - so, not brilliant, but also not too bad. Could last years, could pack up next week. It's all a gamble.

    pigoo3: Yeah, I guess I'm really wanting the Apple battery with a cheap price tag. But I like your point re, most posts involve complaints. There may be many satisfied 20 customers.
    I also agree with your maxim (mine, too) "You get what you pay for."
    Thanks for the link, seen some similar outlets in the UK selling Macbook compatible batteries for around 60. Most of these batteries advertising a life of 300 cycles (So, as chscag points out, if a long term investment - I'd be better off with the genuine Apple battery @ 100, with it's 1000 cycles)

    One seller of the mid-priced batteries was claiming that the difference is that they use Japanese or Korean cells, whereas the cheaper ones use Chinese cells. The chinese cells have a shorter life (says the advertiser).
    Advertiser also claimed that some of the cheaper batteries have no overcharge protection and batteries can explode - but, hey, that might just be scaremongering, for all I know.

    Thanks again for replies.
    Food for thought.
    The jury is still out.
    I'll let you know when it happens.
    Or keep you posted of new events

    Thanks again. Much appreciated, CB
    MBP 2.9GHz i7, 16GB DDR(Crucial), 512GB SSD (Crucial M550) OSX 10.11.5
    iPhone 4S

  5. #5

    bobtomay's Avatar
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    You've got the wrong battery if you're seeing anything about 1,000 charge cycles on a battery for a white MB. 300 cycles is what they are rated at.

    They do not use the batteries that have gone into the last 2-3 years (not sure exactly when Apple introduced them) of Macs that do have 1,000 cycle batteries.
    I cannot be held responsible for the things that come out of my mouth.
    In the Windows world, most everything folks don't understand is called a virus.

  6. #6

    pigoo3's Avatar
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    I was just about to say the same thing as bobtomay. The older style "user replaceable" MacBook batteries were good for 300 cycles.

    The newer (technically "non-user replaceable" batteries)...are the ones that are 1000 cycle batteries.

    If you were to try to find/locate 1000 cycle batteries for older MacBooks/MacBook Pros (older than approx. 2009)...you would never find them...since they do not exist.

    - Nick
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
    - Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some slow computer tips: Speedup
    - Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
    - Apple Battery Info. Battery

  7. #7


    Member Since
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    I would never buy a "generic" replacement MacBook battery. Too many stories (and first-hand accounts) of fire, overheating, bulging, etc.

    There are a few companies, like Newer Tech, I would trust to make a third-party replacement. Not many though.

  8. #8


    Member Since
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    The last of the MacBook range, the unibody version, had a 1000 cycle battery, but there was never a 2GHz version. Yours would have had a 300 cycle battery.

    Whenever I'm booking in a MacBook for repair at the AASP I work for, and see a third party battery fitted, I always ask the customer what they think of it. I've never yet heard a good report, all were bought for around 20 - 30. Although the Apple batteries aren't cheap, hopefully one should last out the MacBook.

    I see your MacBook has Leopard installed. I'd recommend buying the Snow Leopard DVD from Apple and upgrading the OS, Leopard is too old now and will create browsing problems.
    Steve
    UK

  9. #9

    cowbrain's Avatar
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    Thanks for replies.

    Ah, yes, I see. I got the cycle numbers confused. Thanks for clarifications.
    Thanks for the Newer Tech tip. I like the sound of them. Checked out a few other named manufacturers who provide batteries, too. There's some interesting stuff out there - but I think I'm becoming convinced to stick with Apple and will probably go for the real thing.
    It's still a 'probably' rather than a definite. Going to wait until I get my hands on the machine and give it a good check over first.

    Yes, techiesteve, I'll be putting 10.6 on it, too. (I do have 10.6 on my own Macbook - but am having trouble editing my profile to include this!)

    Thanks again for all your help. CB
    MBP 2.9GHz i7, 16GB DDR(Crucial), 512GB SSD (Crucial M550) OSX 10.11.5
    iPhone 4S

  10. #10


    Member Since
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    If you go for a Newer Tech battery, The Bookyard are their UK agents, TheBookYard : Batteries 86.40 inc VAT. Not a lot less than Apple's 101.00. If you buy from the USA there's shipping, Royal Mail's 8.00 VAT collection fee and VAT @ 20% to consider.
    Steve
    UK

  11. #11

    pigoo3's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by techiesteve View Post
    Whenever I'm booking in a MacBook for repair at the AASP I work for, and see a third party battery fitted, I always ask the customer what they think of it. I've never yet heard a good report, all were bought for around 20 - 30.
    Thanks for mentioning that! Always great to get a larger "sample size opinion" regarding those inexpensive batteries.

    What is/are the customers main complaint(s)?:

    - short runtimes on a single charge
    - battery swelling
    - bad fit
    - rapid decrease in single charge runtime
    - etc.

    Thanks,

    - Nick
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
    - Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some slow computer tips: Speedup
    - Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
    - Apple Battery Info. Battery

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