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Old Nov 17, 2010, 12:15 PM   #21
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Btw, the whole time this thread has been going on, I have been stressing over a D7000 I picked up off of eBay from a camera store up in Massachusetts. It just arrived about an hour ago, and I have been going over the entire package with a fine tooth comb to be sure it's not gray market - oh the agony!!! lmao!! You guys have me freaked out - I'm going to be dreaming this s**t when I sleep tonight! :-)
Check with Nikon USA. But, if you found a better price on Ebay than you see at dealers, it's probably gray market (and Nikon USA will usually refuse to service a gray market camera, even if you are willing to pay them for the service).

A lot (if not most) Ebay vendors listing Nikon cameras are selling gear intended for sale in Hong Kong and elsewhere. Be careful. ;-)

Now, I am aware of one good vendor on Ebay that is an Authorized Nikon USA dealer, selling cameras intended for sale in the U.S. That's Cameta Camera. You can see their Ebay store here:

http://stores.ebay.com/Cameta-Camera

You'll also find them in the list of authorized Nikon USA Dealers here:

http://www.nikonusa.com/fileuploads/...uthDealers.pdf

BTW, you'll often find pretty good deals on what they list as "sales demos", which are factory reconditioned Nikon products. These only carry a Nikon USA 90 day warranty, but Cameta extends it via a 1 year warranty from Cameta (and they've got a very good reputation).

But, chances are, if you bought the camera at a great price on Ebay from most other vendors listing Nikon cameras there, it's gray market. Again, check with Nikon USA to find out (they'll know by the serial number if it was intended for sale in the U.S. or not).
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Old Nov 17, 2010, 12:23 PM   #22
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Well, they may be intended for sale in the U.S., but I am not so sure that takes them out of the realm of gray market, since it seems the key component is how the cameras are ordered (either through Nikon USA or through some other importer), not necessarily where they are destined. But either way, I do agree that I will not trust my Nikon purchases where the status of a company is so questionable regarding such a key component (the warranty).

Regarding my purchase, I wish I could say I got such a great deal, but actually it was a little more than the lowest price I have seen at Amazon, Adorama, and B&H. So far, everything fits with what Ken Rockwell wrote regarding the packaging and warranty information, and the serial numbers all match, etc. The camera store does appear to be on the Nikon list, albeit it is hard to be absolutely sure, since their name could be considered fairly common and Nikon does not post address information on their list. I'll probably give Nikon a call later just to confirm, but at this point everything looks good. :-)

Regarding Cameta, yes, I have had good success with them too. And I always stay away from demo and reconditioned items, so no problem there.

Not to sidetrack, but one thing I have noticed is the proliferation of ads on eBay from Hong Kong for prime Nikon gear that is usually quite expensive and very hard to find...steer clear!! That seemingly pristine Nikkor Noct 58mm glass, only found in Hong Kong for some "odd" reason (cough), is guaranteed to scam you!

Last edited by Ryzon; Nov 17, 2010 at 12:35 PM.
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Old Nov 17, 2010, 12:39 PM   #23
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Hey, guys, OP here. As it has been pointed out an actual live person at Nikon USA Inc. actively confirmed to me that Newegg is not an authorized dealer. Then in the chat the newegg rep confirmed the same. Now you MAY be able to get warranty service but do you really want to leave it up to "may"?

I have always considered gray market to mean intended to be sold in other countries but I believe Nikon USA considers it any merchandise not purchased from an authorized dealer.
Either way their official statement is that they will not give warranty service unless it's from an authorized dealer. Not only that but they also state that they won't work on it at all. You can't send it to them for paid repairs either.

There are just too many ifs and buts in there for me. Especially when you can usually buy from Amazon for cheaper or the same price.

Let me say again that until this point I had never had problems with Newegg and I've spent thousands there as well. I was even somewhat indignant when someone implied these things on another forum until I contacted both companies myself. The facts become clear when you contact both companies rather than just speculating or googling (which I did as well!)
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Old Nov 17, 2010, 1:06 PM   #24
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Well, here is something VERY interesting. I just got off the phone with Nikon and I asked them to confirm that my D7000 is not gray market. The representative went through a whole string of criteria, such as the "U" on the box for "United", "U-S" label on the wrapper around the documents, the serial number starting with a 1, 2, or 3, warranty card based on service in the U.S., etc., but never once asked for the company from which I purchased the camera (what?!! This isn't part of the criteria?? So what the heck is this Nikon authorized dealer list about that we have all been concerned over??). Additionally, he said they do not have a lookup for serial numbers to confirm or deny gray market status; that serial numbers are only for registering products. So, now I am confused, since it would appear the criteria is completely focused on the item itself and not how the item was obtained. Wow, talk about confusing.

@DigMe: I totally concur with your reasoning and also would not purchase camera gear there until JimC's criteria was satisfied. I was just concerned that people might start looking at Newegg in a negative light without proper justification, which would be unfair to the company and might cause people to miss out on some other non-photographic deals.

Last edited by Ryzon; Nov 17, 2010 at 1:20 PM.
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Old Nov 17, 2010, 1:09 PM   #25
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...There are just too many ifs and buts in there for me. Especially when you can usually buy from Amazon for cheaper or the same price.
I feel the same way... Until they say that they're an Authorized Nikon USA dealer and Nikon USA confirms it, I would not buy a Nikon camera from newegg.com (no matter how good their reputation is, or how well meaning their intent is).

Until that happens (they indicate that they're an Authorized Nikon USA Dealer selling gear intended for sale in the U.S.; with Nikon USA confirming that they're an Authorized Nikon USA Dealer), I will not recommend newegg.com for camera purchases.
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Old Nov 17, 2010, 1:20 PM   #26
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....Additionally, he said they do not have a lookup for serial numbers to confirm or deny gray market status; that serial numbers are only for registering products....
It surprises me that the rep doesn't have a way to look one up (actually, most Nikon products intended for sale in the U.S. have prefixes that denote that). But, in any event, if you attempt to register a product that has a serial number that is not in their list of serial numbers that came through Nikon USA, you can't register it online (as I've seen others report when they bought gray market gear).

Go to this page, fill out the forms, and you'll find a register button at the bottom of the page.

http://support.nikonusa.com/app/product_registration

But, they'll still want Proof of Purchase when you send one in for warranty service (regardless if the registration takes your serial number or not), and Nikon USA has often stated that their warranty is only valid if you're the original purchaser of a product from an Authorized Nikon USA dealer (the warranty is not transferable if you resell a camera, even if it was originally purchased from an Authorized Nikon USA Dealer).

If you want to risk it, go for it. Personally, I would never buy an expensive Nikon camera unless I'm buying it from an Authorized Nikon USA Dealer, unless I was willing to go elsewhere for service if the camera had a problem (IOW, the price would need to be pretty good compared to the price I would pay for the same camera from an Authorized Nikon USA Dealer).
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Old Nov 17, 2010, 1:40 PM   #27
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Now this is strange...

I used the "Where to Buy" link on Nikon USA home page... Then clicked the
"View a list of available online retailers" button... Amazon isn't listed as an
authorized dealer yet Amazon states that they are on their website...

Here's the link to Nikon's "Where to buy" page...

http://www.nikonusa.com/Nikon-Produc...ge?#see_online

What a conundrum this is turning into...

At least I found out, using that page, that I have an authorized brick-and-mortar
dealer about 50 miles from where I live...
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Old Nov 17, 2010, 1:51 PM   #28
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That's just a list of Authorized Dealers that come up in their Price Search engine, and it does appear to be incomplete. For a complete list of Authorized Nikon USA dealers, check this .pdf file, last updated in June 2010 (and Amazon.com is listed as an Authorized Dealer):

http://www.nikonusa.com/fileuploads/...uthDealers.pdf
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Old Nov 17, 2010, 1:59 PM   #29
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Yeah... The website is a little inconsistent. I'm guessing because there are tons of retainers online and they don't want to list them all. It can vary by product too. If you go to d5000 on Nikonusa.com and look up where to buy online from that page it will show Amazon. The .PDF is the best place to check for sure.

brad
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Old Nov 17, 2010, 2:00 PM   #30
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Bottom line:

Nikon USA will usually refuse to service a camera that was not intended for sale in the U.S. (and many online dealers are selling gray market gear intended for sale in other countries), even if you are willing to pay them for the service. Sorry, you won't get it fixed by Nikon USA if it breaks, although they have made rare exceptions.

As for warranty service for gear that was intended for sale in the U.S., Nikon USA has repeatedly said the warranty is only valid if you are the original purchaser and purchased the camera from an Authorized Nikon USA Dealer.

IOW, the 1 year warranty is not transferable. They're going to want Proof of Purchase when you send one in for Warranty Service, too (so, keep your receipts), even if the online registration works.

It's more likely they'd make an exception for warranty service if it's not a gray market camera (and it was actually intended for sale in the U.S.) But, I would still plan on paying to get it fixed if you did not purchase it from an Authorized Dealer. IOW, Nikon USA will work on a camera for a fee, as long as it was intended for sale in the U.S.

If it wasn't intended for sale in the U.S., you'll probably need to go with a third party repair facility (or send it back to Nikon Japan or your vendor to get it fixed). A good vendor to use for repairs is Precision Camera if that's the case (Nikon USA refuses to work on it, even if you are willing to pay for the service, as is their policy for gray market gear):

http://www.precisioncamera.com/?gcli...FYHu7Qod8he1Hw

If you're not the original purchaser (purchasing it from an Authorized Nikon Dealer), I wouldn't count on getting it fixed under Warranty (i.e., no charge if an issue occurs within the first year), although they'd be more likely to "bend" their policy if it was intended for sale in the U.S.
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