Jump to content
tallomd

Where To Buy: Big Box or Little Shop?

Recommended Posts

When the Sony a7r ii came out I was sure that it was going to be the solution for all of my problems. In my assessment … it’s a good full frame mirrorless camera. However, it’s no SLR. Autofocus is slow with canon glass (which I own a lot of) and the metabones adaptor. It hunts far and wide for focus. It’s easier to manual focus. I am spoiled by the spot on autofocus of my 5D3. The 4K video is good but not as good (in my opinion) as the GH4. So I decided after a hand full of days to return it to B&H.



Over the years, I have spent many thousands of dollars with B and H without any problem. Recently, I purchased an a7r ii. A good camera but decided to return it. In the past, I had returned other less expensive items without difficulty. I felt fairly safe. I was careful to inspect it before shipping. IT functioned perfectly and had NO COSMETIC DEFECTS. It was in its original condition. I placed it in its original box with associated original parts. Shipped it box in box. The refused to accept the return. They claim the camera was "dented" (I haven't seen it yet). I was shocked. I offered the idea that it was damaged when unboxed for inspection. They refused to entertain this idea. So now I own a dented Sony a7r ii.



The question is … should you buy big box or small shop. B and H is SO big that losing your business doesn't matter to them. They do care about their public image. The spend enormous amounts of money to buy your confidence via advertising. They figure they can drown out the voices of people who have had bad experiences with advertisement. They offer marginally lower prices. But in the end … they are going to take your money and run. IF YOU SPEND LARGE SUMS OF MONEY WITH B&H THEN FORGET THE 30 DAY RETURN POLICY. ONCE THEY HAVE YOUR MONEY THEY WILL NOT GIVE IT BACK. SUPPORT AFTER THE SALE IS A JOKE. Don’t believe me … read through google reviews or other review channels. Many people complain about their after the sale support.



Over the years … I have spent 10s of thousands of dollars with Reef Photo They have always treated me well as a customer. When I call they remember who I am (for better or for worse). They have always replaced failed equipment. NEVER an argument. We don’t always agree BUT I always walk away from the discussion feeling like they have listened. I have had similar experiences with small shops. So I’m taking my money to the little guy. Developing a relationship with a REAL PERSON is the key to sorting out these kinds of sticky problems. As for B and H … I would strongly consider another vendor for your future photography purchases.


Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I buy from small, preferably local, shops when I need their advise or want a hands-on session. I also buy from small shops if their price is competitive with the big guys, which is not uncommon. However, in many cases I do my own homework (read the entire online manual, websites like wetpixel, etc) and if the price difference is large I buy online from whomever has the lowest price and a half-decent reputation. I've never returned anything because it didn't live up to expectation and would feel it is my fault for not doing my homework right. There is a risk for shopping lowest price but if savings are large I am willing to take it and live with the consequences.

 

Bart

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you for your order and this feedback. We regret your dissatisfaction. The camera we received has been carefully inspected and the damage photographed. It's outr conclusion (and mine) the damage is not due to having been dropped. The location and nature of the damage strongly suggests it had been attached to, and then forcible removed from, a tripod, perhaps when the tripod was knocked over. I will send some of these images via email.

 

B&H is big but losing any customer's business matters a great deal. We do care about our public image -- every company does. We spend money to buy advertising, but far less than we might since we don't advertize in general purpose newspapers or magazines but only those aimed at our core customers and core product group.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For anybody listening ... Henry is the guy who does damage control for B&H. He is very polite but his job is to protect his company even when they are doing something wrong. Today ... B&H sent me a picture of the camera. There is a big chunk of the exterior face of the camera body missing. Helene Keller couldn't have missed it. I certainly didn't. Henry would like you to believe that his company is above telling misleading their customers. I sent them a camera for return. Somebody at B&H dropped it. Now they are telling me that I own it. Don't let them do this to you.

 

They can do that me ... just don't let them do that to you. Just don't buy from B&H.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Bart ... I general I agree with your statement. For more than a month, I researched this camera. It is a new release from Sony. Nobody had it. It isn't well documented. Much of what you read about it is hyped by the manufacturer. You just don't know what you get until it arrives sometimes. I wouldn't have purchased this camera without the option of return. I owned a Panasonic GH4. Bought it last winter. I liked it! Didn't love it. Very noisy 4K video. Sold it on eBay at a loss. I took my lumps.

 

That's not what I am talking about. The problem has morphed a bit since my first post. B&H has a 30 day return policy. I sent a camera to them for return. They damaged it and refuse to acknowledge that they did something wrong. I wouldn't want that to happen to you. That's the reason for my post.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For anybody listening ... Henry is the guy who does damage control for B&H. He is very polite but his job is to protect his company even when they are doing something wrong.

 

Part of my job IS to protect the company. I am the director of corporate communication, manage our online reputation and act as the customers' ombudsman to facilitate solutuions to difficult probmens. But, I'd never defend B&H if we'd done something wrong. Our COO (my boss's boss) has a philosophy that if we're 1% wrong, we're wrong. I subscribe to that. I also hold my own integrity too highly to compromise it defending an error or mistake. Those who've seen me online for the past 20 years know this to be true.

 

I appreciate this is a fraught situation but impugning my character does nothing to support or refute the facts. I did send 3 pictures of the camera and there is a big chunk of the exterior face of the camera body missing. But it's evident from the damage the camera wasn't dropped. It seems more likely the camera might have been mounted on a tripod which then fell. Had it been dropped the damage would be dented inward. The baseplate of the camera is pulled outward as the photos cleary show.

Edited by henryp

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sponsors

Advertisements



×
×
  • Create New...