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"you're too poor to be cheap"
The difference in price between a $30 MAF and even $100 for a brand new genuine unit is pretty small. As Joe says, the consequences of trying out a cheap unit could be be significant and very costly (like more costly than buying a dozen SAAB MAF's).
See below for a recent thread in the c900 bb where people are enthusiastic about the possibility of spending $180+shipping to rework an existing AMM and actually reliably end up with a good working unit. So many rebuilders were unable to make these things work properly - you'd buy a rebuilt and have about as much trouble as you had with the old one, or it wouldn't last or whatever. I don't believe there are vast differences between a c900 AMM and a 9-5 AMM (though unfortunately they are not compatible). So it's possible the Chinese can make one of these that works well for $30, but trying one (when the real deal is <$100) is not even something that would have crossed my mind!
Typically with Chinese manufactured items, there can be significant variability, so you might get one that is fantastic and then another you order is not so good. In some cases that is changing, in other situations, it is not. So I would also be a little careful re trusting anecdotal evidence from bb's on this unless there are many positive recent experiences.
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