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Close Enough to be an Apple
on February 19, 2013
Purchasing power adapters is always a bit of a crap shoot. The only sure fire guarantee of getting an original, fresh in the box OEM adapter is to purchase it from the original vendor outlet, in this case an Apple store. You've got 99.9% certainty with Amazon if it's sold directly by Amazon. Once you move outside the box, it gets murkier, you're in the land of blemished products, refurbishments, returns, copy-cats and forgeries. A lot of times they're actually made by the original supplier (Apples sub) but produced to a slightly lower spec or using slightly inferior materials.
Mine was sold by MLC and fufilled by Amazon. Going into the purchase I knew I wasn't going to be getting the same as what I'd get from the Apple store. Then again I wasn't paying almost 2x the price.
As a general rule of thumb, I opt for purchasing directly from Amazon or at the very least having it fufilled by Amazon. This makes returning the item easier, generally it's no cost if it doesn't work or isn't what was advertised.
As for what I recieved, it's virtually identical to the A1343 that came with my MacBook Pro 17" (2011). The only difference I've noted is that the 6' cord (which was supplied) was 1" shorter. It also has a blemish on the side of the housing, a bit of a crinkle or mold mark. Something that won't affect performance but wouldn't pass muster as an Apple product.
The other oddity is that while it came in just a cradboard box, the components were wrapped in a manner similar to the peel away plastic film typical of Apple. Except it was tape.
Performance wise I've seen no issue after a week of use, including charging a drained battery while simultaneously performing some load inducing graphic work.
At half the price I'm more than satisfied with my purchase. This was a second / leave behind adapter, if it drops dead in a year or so I'm not going to be outraged given the cost.