>I'm with you...I could not believe a 3rd party grip could do >the things that it apparently did. I mean the Chinese >dissected the MB-12 and copied it...didn't they?
Obviously, the maker of your third-party grip copied the original only well enough to make a sale. But the maker didn't copy the quality, didn't properly copy the electrical design using acceptable quality materials or manufacturing, etc., etc. What can anyone possibly expect to find in a $30 or $40 grip? I know that very few people expect to find the exact same quality, but I think that too many people hope for the exact same day-in, day-out performance.
>Bottom line....I'm still running the aftermarket pack, but as >soon as I get my next commission check, it's going on Ebay >cheap and I am ordering the MB-12.
If the battery grip is bad, it seems a bit questionable to then put it up on eBay with a notation that it might be bad. Someone else might end up going through the same aggravation you went through. If you don't mention the problems that you think are likely attributable to the grip, you might end up being accused by eBay and the buyer of selling a grip you knew was bad.
>It just KILLS me to shell >out even more but I guess it to be worth it. >Please keep us informed as to what you find.
Nikon and the retailers set high prices for genuine Nikon grips because they can do so. Compared to a third-party grip that works well, the Nikon grip seems outrageously priced. Compared to a third-party grip that works poorly and causes camera problems, the Nikon grip looks like a bargain.
Some third-party grip users go through two or three bad grips before finding one that works. They take the time to order online, test the third-party grip, ship back a bad one and wait for a replacement, or get no response and just trash the bad grip and order another one. Those photographers feel that the time and money they spend still amounts to a smaller outlay than that required to buy a genuine Nikon grip.
If you decide to purchase another third-party grip online through eBay, only purchase from a seller with the highest rating and inquire about his exchange policy in the event you receive a bad grip. Read the feedback on the seller. Better still, buy a third-party grip online through Berger Brothers, B&H or Adorama in the U.S. so that you're guaranteed to have an exchange in the event you get a bad one.
The percentage of third-party grips that fail is so high that any reachable, reputable manufacturer that was doing business in the U.S., Canada or the EU would be forced into a recall and exhange campaign. But because several third-party grip makers and sellers are able to hide behind a lot of online layers and exceedingly difficult to trace manufacturing origins, some buyers of the products just make excuses to justify the low prices after finding out that they've received a bad grip.
There are two brands of grip which seem to offer somewhat decent manufacturing quality and somewhat acceptable percentage of bad grips - Pixel Vertax and Meike. Vello is also mentioned sometimes. Years ago, I think it was Hoodman (a U.S. company) that offered a decent quality third-party grip for the D70, D70s and D80 IIRC, but Hoodman is no longer making grips in addition to its other photography products. Whatever brand you choose, the genuine Nikon grip clearly has the smallest number of reported problems by far.