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Old Oct 16, 2006, 5:59 AM   #231
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Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 83

Hello again.

Just a quickie, for anyone thinking of buying a new camera. Just found http://www.buybestdigitalcamera.com/ who have, among other things, the new Panasonic FZ50 at GBP344, which is at least GBP50 cheaper than I have seen it elsewhere! If you are wondering about the dreaded VAT or other import charges (for our foreign friends), so was I! A quick look on their FAQ page reveals that if you have to pay it then they will reimburse the cost!

Not sure whether this info is of any use to anyone, or whether http://www.buybestdigitalcamera.com/ have been mentioned on these forum pages or others before (I have just posted it in the Which Camera to buy one) but just thought I'd share it with you.

Happy Capturing (yes, I know it isn't as good as Happy Snapping but I think most of us here are a bit more than "Snappers")

Cheers Everyone

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Old Oct 16, 2006, 8:29 AM   #232
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Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 83

Hello again!

It appears I may have jumped the gun when recommending you all visit a certain online vendor in my last post. I posted the same info on another forum and got this reply from JimC, Moderator. Thank you JimC for your reply

kriptone wrote:
Trust this meets with approval
Not really. :-) There are a lot of scam artists around with good prices. Usually, if a price looks too good to be true, it probably is.

Have you personally ordered from this vendor?

From looking through their web site, it appears that they're located in Japan, shipping cameras intended for sale in Japan.

So, that means you'd be buying gray market gear (gear not intended for sale in the country you live in), and some manufacturers will refuse to service gray market gear, even if you're willing to pay them for the service.

Nikon has this policy, since each regional office is setup as it's own profit center (Nikon USA, Nikon Europe, Nikon Canada, etc.). For example, If I buy a Nikon camera that bypasses Nikon USA, Nikon USA will refuse to service it, even if I'm willing to pay them, in order to discourage the practice of gray market imports.

Some of the other manufacturers have similar policies.

You'd also be liable for any import duties and taxes on gear being shipped from overseas (if the vendor actually ships the products you pay for).

Suggested Reading:

How to Buy a Digital Camera without being Robbed
Also, JimC just posted this, in reply to my original post:
It's pretty obvious that they're selling gray market gear. They also ask you to send the cameras back to them for service (the warranty is through them, not the manufacturer). Personally, I've seen too many horror stories about store warranties (cameras being kept for 6 months without being fixed, etc.) to take that kind of risk.

Warranty We provide 1 Year Warranty for all cameras and Panasonic SD cards. If your product needs to be fixed within 1 year of purchasing, please send it to our company in Japan. Note that postage for sending to Japan is at your expense while we will pay for it when returning to you.

As for how good their service is, I don't know of anyone that's used them. I wouldn't trust a store warranty, since you don't even know if they can get the parts. I also make sure I buy from a dealer that has *LOTS* Of good customer reviews on sites like http://www.resellerraings.com (since vendors have been known to pad their own ratings).

My advise, stick with a authorized dealer that is known to be reputable, and buy products that are intended for sale in the country you live in.
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