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After 3 years my mid-2010 17" MBP model is telling me it's time to replace the battery. The current one (model A1309, FWIW) has had ~1000 cycles now and can't hold the charge reliably anymore.

Being from a small EU country, I'm now facing a surprising dilemma. We only have one official reseller of Apple equipment and three or four companies that claim to service Apple devices, but I doubt they are all official. Nevertheless, I've sent an enquiry about the battery to all of them. One responded they can't deliver and another told me the price is €330, assembly included. I'm still waiting for the other responses, but I'm not optimistic.

In the mean time, a quick search of the web tells me there are plenty of EU-based sites that sell compatible batteries and deliver to my country. While some claim the batteries are OEM, it's obvious that most are knock-offs, otherwise they wouldn't cost sub $100, delivery included.

But my dilemma isn't so much about money (although $430 is a bit over the top for a laptop battery). It's about the fact, that there probably aren't any new OEM batteries available, because Apple moved away from 17" MBP models and user-replaceable batteries as a whole some time ago. Even at $430, whatever I get, probably won't be fresh from the assembly line. And I'm fairly certain I can't expect to get another 3 years out of a battery that's been laying around some warehouse unattended for 2+ years, OEM or not.

So I'm pondering... Is it better to try my luck with a much cheaper knock-off that's likely fresh, or trust the quality of an expensive and potentially quite old OEM battery?

What would you do given such predicament?

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I would have buy the battery on iFixit which provide a great service and a lot of good (OEM) products and change the battery by myself or a friend. (It's not so hard, as long as you can use a screwdriver and follow a tutorial!)

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