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Just some info for all.
About 6 months ago, a Canon EOS 5 body with a 28-135 IS lens attached ceased to work after being dropped. The filter on the lens was shattered.
Took the camera to Jessops who passed it on to Canon for repair. After aprox. NINE weeks, got a letter saying that as there was corrosion, the camera was beyond economical repair. No comments as to what was corroded or any costing for the customer to decide.
In March, went on a business trip to Kuala Lumpur. Took the same camera to Canon Malaysia and asked if they would repair it. I gave my collegues's home address so that for all purposes, I was a local. The following day I got a call giveing me an estimate on which I gave the go ahead to repair. The repair was complete in THREE days. Local practice is to return parts changed. The corrosioon was across some connections in a circuit board, cost of the board was aprox 20, the command Dial was changed and the camera serviced. Total cost aprox 55. The camera works fine and there are no imprt costs for repair. Bear this in mind that you can get better value even for repairs else where.
The practice in the UK is to charge huge mark ups and high labour costs. The expectancy in the UK was to replace the camera. Value for money is still elsewhere. We as consumers need to vote with our feet.
As an aside and is interesting was in Feb 02, Canon through a pro dealer in London matched and bettered a price for an advertised 'grey' long lens to keep a sale. It saved me 30% from the best discounted price and 40% from the RRP that many dealears wanted to charge.
LONG LIVE THE GREY MARKET.
Any one else with similar experiances, please air them. The there is awareness, greater the chance that we will get better deals.
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The quality of service in Treasure Island can be appalling. I spent a year returning my Linotype scanner which produced scans with several lines on them. It was returned as repaired each time with the same fault. The company responsible for the repairs even replaced it with a second hand one which was worse.
My S2 has just been returned to me with the same fault - several black areas on the image. They have just cleaned the sensor assuming that it is dust and then returned it without testing to see if they have fixed the problem.
Don't these repair personel 'road test' the equipment they are supposed to be repairing?
a relation sent a panasonic palmcorder, used for 20 hours to auth repairer who stated the heads needed cleaning,subsequently said they were knackered and pansonic supplied new heads, you guessed it, same problem on return. They then said the heads might want cleaning The drum was brand new for goodness sake. On speaking got shirty and said,oh just send it back. Panasonic have been helpful and expect it to be sent to them for assessment if repairer find the job too much. Plonkers or what ?
Sorry to sound stupid but what do grey market imports actually mean?
Another gripe from yesterday on the what we have to put up with.
An EOS5 was given to Jessops in early Oct. 2002 for repair: a stiff command dial, built in flash did not work and intermittant over/underexposure problems with normal and flash photography. Jessops passed the camera on to Canon to do the repair. I had hoped to get the camera back in time for a working trip to South Africa in early December 02 which coincided with the solar eclipse. You guessed it, camera came back in mid Dec.
Due to pressures of work and constraints on time, used the repaired camera on a safari in mid Jan -Feb. The resulting photos from the camera showed intermittant under and over exposure on several rolls of film even with the built in flash. Some very interesting shots of wild life includeing bats were lost.
Returned the camera to Jessops on 21/2. Got a letter Thursday 3/4, dated 27/2 asking me to send the lens that was used with the camera to aid trouble shooting. It took over a month for them to come to this decision, a repair that is under gurantee. I was told that the six month gurantee was from the date of the original repair in November 02.
It is outrages that we are charged a fortune for the repair that has NOT fixed the problem and then have repairers sit on the equipment for ages. It is as though they are doing us a favour and charge well for the privilage.
Folks there is not enough outrage expressed in public forums for these service providers to take notice.
Where there is good service I will acknowledge it, increaseingly, this is not to be the case. Increaseingly we are being taken for granted with an attitude of pay up or shut up. Some photography magasines are obliquely (commenting that service departments are busy along the cost of labour, etc) supporting this line as I presume, they have the advertising accounts to worry about. Forums such as this have a wider audiance and can be more effective in demanding better service.
Canons inability to be able to fix there own cameras or to hold stocks of any parts relating to repair their cameras led me to go and buy Nikon. I had two very expensive Canon items fixed for the same fault six times in one year each time it was returned with the fault was still there.
In the end Canon told me that the cameras were old and should be upgraded. They were in fact 12 months old bought brand new.
So we did upgrade..to Nikon F5's
Fuji had my S2 for two weeks and returned it in a worse state than I sent it. Not only had they failed to remove what was causing black spots on the image, but returned the body without its bodycap, allowing more dust and hair to get onto the ccd array.
I used a swab and some cleaning fluid to clean it - two minutes work and it appears to be perfect!!
echoing doczoc's question - what is this "grey" business?!?
Grey Goods. Goods produced for a foreign market, but sold in UK by a UK company, usually at a lower price. For example, buying a new Elan 7 from Tottenham Court Road for 270 as opposed a new EOS 33 from Jessops for 399. Sometimes, the badge may even be the same. The difference is supposedly in the support (USA mainland warranty only etc), but you are usually still better off than buying s/h as you can take it back to the shop, so it's worth considering.
Manufacturers ship goods into this country via a network (middlemen. Grey importers bypass this system and purchase goods from foriegn sorces.
The savings made by not paying middlemen allows them to sell goods at a lower price.
The manufacturers however do not like the fact that the network of suppliers in the chain miss out on their profit and the warranty on these items is usually in question.
Problems years ago related to shops selling "grey" products and passing them as genuine imports at the top price.
The goods are genuine. They may have a badge relating to another country or they be exacly the same as one bought elsewhere. These items imported without approval are termed "grey imports". You pays your money.....
Is the purposefully raised prices for uk goods illegal? Have we not already seen this in the trade of motor vehicles?
How about this - I saw an advert some time ago in an American custom car magazine for 'Quality! British Made Mountney steering wheels' - they were selling in the USA, after shipping them from the UK factory all the way to the USA, for LESS than we can buy them for here - IN THE UK! Makes you wonder.
Having travelled to major continents (USA, Europe, Australasia) it's an eye opener how much we get stung. In Melbourne Australia you could buy a BRAND NEW Ford Ka, on the road, for less money than a Ford dealer here charges for a 3 YEAR OLD one!!
We can very justly be termed 'Rip Off Britain' - no problem.
Something needs to be done, but unfortunately as long as the consumers keep consuming, nothing will happen.
Why are the Brits always moaning about being ripped off? Wages in the UK are also amongst the the highest in the world - I don't hear anyone moaning about that.
I live in New Zealand, average salary 10,000 per year. Camera gear costs roughly the same as in the UK, maybe a bit more. Film and processing is double the UK cost. Yet people here don't complain about having to shell out 2k for the latest digital SLR whilst it's cheaper in Thailand or wherever. Most folk are happy to use a 20 yr old SLR and simply get on with it.
I've also lived in Australia and it's the same there. Things may look cheaper but take in to account that you're earning 30% less and paying more tax. Not so cheap.
Be grateful for what you've got and what you earn.
J-P, but don't most Kiwis supplement their income working as extras for Peter Jackson ?
Big Bri-you do make me chuckle!
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