Buying refurbished cameras?

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by D34th, Jul 5, 2006.

  1. D34th macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2006
    Location:
    Connecticut
    #1
    I searched and didn't find much...There's is always some deals with refurb cameras on many sites. How safe is buying a refurbished camera? Would I expect there to be any problems with it? I'm sure I would be able to just return it if there were any problems, but it would be nice to avoid that whole process if I am supposed to "expect" problems with the camera. I'm looking at the refurbished Nikon D50 from www.sigma4less.com. Thanks...
     
  2. jared_kipe macrumors 68030

    jared_kipe

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2003
    Location:
    Seattle
    #2
    I would assume it would pretty much be like buying a refurb mac or something like that.

    Often times refurbs are not fixed "broken" things, but simply open box items that were returned. They've probably done research and found out that "refurb" sells better than "used and returned".
     
  3. cookie1105 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2006
    Location:
    London, UK
    #3
    My ef 50mm f/1.4 was a refurb. It was actually the only reason that I got it instead of the ef 50mm f/1.8 I. My refurb was fine. As Jared says a lot of them are opened boxes that are returned. Apparently they are then serviced and tested, repackaged etc. and resold. Quality control should be fine.
     
  4. ouphe macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2005
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    #4
    I acutally just bought that exact camera a couple of weeks ago (refurbed, as well, and from sigma4less!). The purchasing experience was fine, and the camera is basically brand new (if I didn't know it was refurbed, I wouldn't be able to tell by looking at it). I'm very happy with my purchase. Go with it and enjoy!

    -Colin
     
  5. Chip NoVaMac macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2003
    Location:
    Northern Virginia
    #5
    We sell refurbs at my shop, and as long as they are Manufacturer refurbs, then there is nothing to worry about IMO. Have had great luck in my purchases of refurbed lenses and cameras.
     
  6. D34th thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2006
    Location:
    Connecticut
    #6
    Thank you. That is mostly what I though. You were safe as long as it was a manufacturer refurb. Thanks again everyone...
     
  7. Chip NoVaMac macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2003
    Location:
    Northern Virginia
    #7
    I am sure that others will argue otherwise. But most refurbs have on 90 day warranties. My shop does offer Mack warranties for 4 years on either new or refurbed product.
     
  8. REDSRT4 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2006
    #8
    I bought one and it only had a 30 day warranty if you get one make sure it has 90+ warranty i had issues from the start though :(
     
  9. pdxflint macrumors 68020

    pdxflint

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2006
    Location:
    Oregon coast
    #9
    I'm bringing this slightly old thread back to life... I recently purchased a Nikon D50 w/kit lens refurbished from my local Shutterbug retailer. It was just under $500 for the body/lens. I didn't really want the lens, but that was part of the package, although the receipts priced the D50 at just under $400 and the 18-55 kit lens at $100 as if they were purchased seperately... don't know why.

    The camera/lens combo were factory refurbs with 90 day warranties. I added a Mack 5 yr. warranty (still digital under $500) for $60 because I had heard of a few D50s having shutter problems under warranty, and wanted to cover myself there. But, still with the extra $60 the camera seems like hell of a deal. They were sealed in factory boxes (which did say 'refurbished') and came with all the usual stuff the new ones come with. Camera was for all practical purposes, brand new. The 'new' ones were around $200 more.

    I asked the store manager what 'refurbished' meant, and he told me they could have been reps cameras, factory returns, or cameras that didn't pass some QC issues during the original manufacturing run, and were flagged to be 'corrected' before going out of the factory. The cameras/lenses that were rejected at that point were pulled off the assembly lines until that run of manufacturing was done, and then sent back to be brought up to spec later. They were classified as 'reconditioned' even though they had never left the factory in the first place, and they were packaged in different boxes for reconditioned products. That's basically the story I got from the store manager who works closely with Nikon reps.

    Bottom line: I'd feel comfortable with factory reconditioned products, but be a bit careful about who I purchased from if doing it online. Buying locally I got to handle my camera first and give it a thorough inspection before committing to that particular one. Also, I have someone local to go to if I have questions or problems. Makes a huge difference to me. Cheers. -pdxflint
     
  10. serpent macrumors member

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    Jul 29, 2006
  11. maxi macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 23, 2006
    Location:
    Buenos Aires, Argentina
    #11
    my company does a portion of the P&S refurbs for one of the big ones.
    I'd say about a pretty big percentage of the cameras are just returns because the user didn't like/understand it. we even replace blemished parts, so if you buy one of the cameras we did, you are essentially getting a new, tested and recently calibrated camera. :)
     
  12. Chip NoVaMac macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2003
    Location:
    Northern Virginia
    #12
    Refurb'd cameras have many "reasons" for being "refurb'd". Never heard the story that they did not meet factory specs. It is possible though.

    The reason I have been told about "refurbs" is that they may have been DOA cameras sent back from dealers, and repaired. They may have been returns from dealers as "open box returns" from dealers that have decided to pay the "price" for that privilege - as opposed to dealers that take and markdown open box items.

    In some cases "refurbs" are "salesperson" samples and/or "loaners" to the press and selected "pro" shooters( read the "press" - reviews and blogs). In my time with the shop I work at- I never have seen a "refurb" that was as abused as some of our rental units.

    To that end,one of my D70s' is a "refurb". And if I were still shooting Canon, I would love to have a "refurb" 70-200IS.
     

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