Beware of Fake Canon NB-7L Batteries for the G10 and G11 Sold on Amazon Marketplace

I recently purchased what was supposedly an authentic Canon NB-7L battery for my Canon G11 camera from a seller with high ratings on Amazon’s Marketplace, but after opening the package, I discovered that the battery is significantly different than the stock Canon battery that came with my camera. This and other discrepancies lead me to believe that the battery that I purchased is fake, and I am in the process of returning it to the seller. I will withhold the seller’s name unless there is any problem making the return.

There are several reasons why I believe my recently purchased NB-7L battery to be fake. First, the printing on the new battery appears of substantially lower quality and it is distorted. Also, the new battery has substantially less information on the battery including no serial number.

The following pictures are of the front and back of my real NB-7L battery that was included with my Canon G11 camera.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/dynamicsubspace/5855871166/in/set-72157627011177070

Real Canon NB-7L Battery Back

The following pictures are of the front and back of the suspect NB-7L battery.

Fake Canon NB-7L Battery, Front, Printing Appears Cheap

Fake Canon NB-7L Battery, Front, Printing Appears Cheap and Distorted, Note "Made in Japan"

Second, the weight of the real NB-7L is substantially higher (real = 1.8 oz., fake = 1.4 oz. = 0.4 oz. difference) than the suspect battery. I immediately recognized that the suspect battery was lighter when I picked it up.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/dynamicsubspace/5855873778/in/set-72157627011177070

http://www.flickr.com/photos/dynamicsubspace/5855323747/in/set-72157627011177070

Third, the packaging of the suspect battery looks authentic and it includes a Canon hologram. Do real retail packages have this hologram? I don’t know since I haven’t seen a package on a store shelf. However, I found it troublesome that the packaging includes the words, “Made in China,” but the suspicious battery is marked “Made in Japan.” My authentic battery is “Made in China.” This leads me to believe that the packaging may be real or more faithfully copied than the battery.

Fake Canon NB-7L Battery Packaging

Fake Canon NB-7L Battery Packaging, Hologram Looks Real

Fake Canon NB-7L Battery Packaging, Back

Fake Canon NB-7L Battery Packaging, Back, Close-up of Made in China

I hope to return this battery soon to the Marketplace seller, because I will not settle for anything other than an authentic Canon battery or a battery made by a reputable third party. The problem with using a battery posing as a real, oem battery is that there are potential dangers associated with a fake battery. Modern lithium-ion batteries include microchips that communicate with your electronic hardware, and if these battery chips are fake or send the wrong information, it could do a variety of things ranging from damaging your camera’s internal electronics to inaccurately reporting the charge status of the fake battery. There is also the very real hazard of exploding, overheating, or leaking batteries. Authentic batteries have a slim chance of doing these things, too, but at least with an authentic battery, there is a real party who can be held liable for damages. The fake battery also likely holds less charge due to its lighter weight and potentially less battery cells.

Protect your camera and yourself by carefully selecting and purchasing authentic oem or reputable replacement parts.

If you have more info about fake batteries, please share your stories in the comments.

I am a professor of English at the New York City College of Technology, CUNY whose teaching includes composition and technical communication, and research focuses on 20th/21st-century American culture, science fiction, neuroscience, and digital technology.

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Posted in Personal, Technology
6 comments on “Beware of Fake Canon NB-7L Batteries for the G10 and G11 Sold on Amazon Marketplace
  1. JP says:

    I came across this post when I googled “fake NB-7L battery”. Thanks for posting this. It is very helpful. I also received a fake battery from an Amazon Marketplace seller that looks exactly like the fake one you received. I will be returning it.

  2. Joe says:

    I ordered a NB-7L from a seller on eBay who claimed it was genuine. The one I received looks like yours and says Made in Japan. My battery was heavier than the one that came with my camera. I haven’t used it yet, I wonder if I should try to return it.

  3. David Potter says:

    Two points

    Firstly the genuine Canon hologram turns green when angled to the light.
    Secondly, I too have a battery that looks like your fake but have used this for a year with no difference in performance. It holds its charge for hundreds of action and months with minimal use.

    It may be a fake but it does the job.

    Dave

  4. Jason Ellis says:

    Hey David, Thanks for commenting with your observations on the real hologram and battery life of a potential fake. I’m glad that the battery that you have is working well for you. From what I have read online about these batteries it can be a mixed bag–some folks have no problem with them and others do. Besides the possibility of trouble with the battery or your camera as a result of the battery, it makes me angry that some manufacturers go to such lengths to pass off their batteries as the real thing from Canon. This particularly affects battery life, because the fakes likely have fewer cells (hence the lower weight discrepancy). I suppose the next step for the rip-off artists is to glue a piece of lead into the battery case to replicate accurate weight. Best, Jason

  5. Tim says:

    Canon authorizes manufacture of their hardware in multiple factories that are supposed to follow the same QA guidelines, but the end product doesn’t always look the same. Look at this page on Canon’s website, then click the plus sign next to Lithium Ion batteries and there are photos of genuine batteries that look like this one.
    http://www.usa.canon.com/cusa/support/consumer?pageKeyCode=prdAdvDetail&docId=0901e0248004cc7e

  6. Dear Tim, Thanks for the link. This is useful. However, I recommend that buyers consider the weight of the battery in their buying decision, because as I point out, there are physical differences beyond the look and feel. Best, Jason

Comments are closed.

Who is Dynamic Subspace?

Dr. Jason W. Ellis shares his interdisciplinary research and pedagogy on DynamicSubspace.net. Its focus includes the exploration of science, technology, and cultural issues through science fiction and neuroscientific approaches. It includes vintage computing, LEGO, and other wonderful things, too.

He is an Assistant Professor of English at the New York City College of Technology, CUNY (City Tech) where he teaches college writing, technical communication, and science fiction.

He holds a Ph.D. in English from Kent State University, M.A. in Science Fiction Studies from the University of Liverpool, and B.S. in Science, Technology, and Culture from Georgia Tech.

He welcomes questions, comments, and inquiries for collaboration via email at jellis at citytech dot cuny dot edu or Twitter @dynamicsubspace.

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