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01-26-2014, 04:23 AM   #1
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I have a question on buying lens on Amazon

I am about to buy the 18-135 WR lens on Amazon from a seller with a great 4.8 rating for a great price ($401.) Seller: DavisMAX. But if it is not from Amazon directly and through a seller on there will I receive a full warranty or is this potentially a grey market item? I don't want to buy it through someone with a chance I will miss out on a warranty. Its roughly $100 less than B&H. Thank you.

01-26-2014, 04:47 AM   #2
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If Amazon isn't listed as the seller, it's not Amazon selling it even though it is on their site -- so the person may not be an authorized dealer.
01-26-2014, 07:34 AM   #3
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That lens has only 1 1/2 stars out of 5 on Photozone reviews.

Here is a quote from their verdict: "Just to mention again - we couldn't believe the rather poor performance so we asked the local Pentax service in Hamburg/Germany for an assessment of the situation. Result: the lens is within factory specifications."

Check the reviews before you buy.
01-26-2014, 07:44 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by gbeaton Quote
That lens has only 1 1/2 stars out of 5 on Photozone reviews.

Here is a quote from their verdict: "Just to mention again - we couldn't believe the rather poor performance so we asked the local Pentax service in Hamburg/Germany for an assessment of the situation. Result: the lens is within factory specifications."

Check the reviews before you buy.
LensRentals.com - Inspecting an ‘In Spec’ Lens

Never trust a review site that only tests one lens.

01-26-2014, 07:48 AM   #5
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Amazon can be shady like that. Maybe try contacting the seller directly or seeing if they have a website. I think there were threads about this kind of dilemma in the past, but I don't remember the outcome.
01-26-2014, 08:42 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Billium28 Quote
I am about to buy the 18-135 WR lens on Amazon from a seller with a great 4.8 rating for a great price ($401.) Seller: DavisMAX. But if it is not from Amazon directly and through a seller on there will I receive a full warranty or is this potentially a grey market item? I don't want to buy it through someone with a chance I will miss out on a warranty. Its roughly $100 less than B&H. Thank you.
Check out the attached link AtoZ Amazon.com Help: A-to-z Guarantee Protection
01-26-2014, 08:46 AM   #7
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Y
QuoteOriginally posted by Na Horuk Quote
Amazon can be shady like that. Maybe try contacting the seller directly or seeing if they have a website. I think there were threads about this kind of dilemma in the past, but I don't remember the outcome.
I've bought hundreds of items from Amazon or a third party selling on Amazon and have never been dissatisfied.
01-26-2014, 09:11 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by boriscleto Quote
LensRentals.com - Inspecting an ‘In Spec’ Lens

Never trust a review site that only tests one lens.
Can you recommend a good review site?

01-26-2014, 09:21 AM   #9
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There are very few authorized Pentax dealers, so Amazon itself would be fine, but a 3rd party on Amazon would be much less likely to be authorized, unless it's a familiar name. But the warranty isn't the biggest issue; return polices are. Assume you'll need to buy multiple copies before finding a decent lens. Amazon lets you keep trying copies until they run out (or you tire of the process), and you get to keep the each one long enough to compare it to the next one they send. And no charge for shipping in either direction.
01-26-2014, 09:26 AM   #10
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All good info I'll read up after work.
01-26-2014, 09:29 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by gbeaton Quote
Can you recommend a good review site?
There are no reliable review sites in the sense that you're asking. You also have to consider the source of the product - if it's provided to the reviewer by the manufacturer, it's possible that it's been pre-selected as a good copy. What review sites have the finances to go out and buy dozens of copies of each lens they test at retail, for a truly random sample, so you'll have some idea of what odds you have of getting a decent copy?

On the other hand, I don't put a lot of faith in, for example, amazon average scores for lenses. I don't believe most consumers make any serious attempt to test lenses. But reading the individual reviews can be helpful, since you get a feel for how seriously the user has tested the lens, and what they're comparing it to.
01-26-2014, 09:52 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by gbeaton Quote
Can you recommend a good review site?
why wouldn't you give some trust to the reviews here on this forum? Having read many opinions at least, instead of one.
As for the 13-135, pz guy had only one early version to test which unfortunately wasn't good copy.
I can confirm that my 18-135 performs just excellent. 90% of time this lens is on my camera.
Here is an example of photo taken at 135mm wide open (1/1000 f5.6 hand held)
http://img-fotki.yandex.ru/get/9111/5480636.c/0_c3dab_7229e6ac_XXL.jpg

this one is 1/400 f/9 24mm
http://img-fotki.yandex.ru/get/9299/5480636.c/0_c406b_254e68f4_XXXL.jpg

some more
https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-bBAAZtFz_nI/Uji_IyeknjI/AAAAAAAAB6U/gEmN5...o/IMGP1310.jpg
https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-g1_CDkcGXgg/Uji_FA1tbII/AAAAAAAAB5k/x3fiS...o/IMGP1304.jpg
low light
https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-R_qX3bN4P3Q/UjXjjvVCVSI/AAAAAAAACOI/oVZ7V...o/IMGP1285.jpg
https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-z-BTMLu67mM/UjXjyK3MeRI/AAAAAAAAB3s/GY17m...o/IMGP1289.jpg

Try one.
01-26-2014, 10:09 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by QCdude Quote
why wouldn't you give some trust to the reviews here on this forum? Having read many opinions at least, instead of one.
As for the 13-135, pz guy had only one early version to test which unfortunately wasn't good copy.
I can confirm that my 18-135 performs just excellent. 90% of time this lens is on my camera.
Here is an example of photo taken at 135mm wide open (1/1000 f5.6 hand held)
http://img-fotki.yandex.ru/get/9111/5480636.c/0_c3dab_7229e6ac_XXL.jpg

this one is 1/400 f/9 24mm
http://img-fotki.yandex.ru/get/9299/5480636.c/0_c406b_254e68f4_XXXL.jpg

some more
https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-bBAAZtFz_nI/Uji_IyeknjI/AAAAAAAAB6U/gEmN5...o/IMGP1310.jpg
https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-g1_CDkcGXgg/Uji_FA1tbII/AAAAAAAAB5k/x3fiS...o/IMGP1304.jpg
low light
https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-R_qX3bN4P3Q/UjXjjvVCVSI/AAAAAAAACOI/oVZ7V...o/IMGP1285.jpg
https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-z-BTMLu67mM/UjXjyK3MeRI/AAAAAAAAB3s/GY17m...o/IMGP1289.jpg

Try one.
Reviews on this site are very helpful, but like with Amazon I think you have to read the reviews and not just go by the average score.

However you still need more objective/technical reviews, such as done by photozone, etc. Taking the 17-50 Tamron, for example, you won't find a lot of "consumer" reviews mentioning the focus field curvature at 17mm (err... 17.01mm), yet as far as I know this is a designed-in property of the lens. It's incredibly obvious with certain subjects, but not a lot of reviews mention it.

The problem isn't reviewers only testing one copy, it's that manufacturers need to make every copy more reflective of the design capabilities. This seems to be much, much more of a problem with lenses than with toasters, or TVs, or computers, or automobiles, and it's not clear to me why that should be true.
01-26-2014, 10:32 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by tibbitts Quote
Reviews on this site are very helpful, but like with Amazon I think you have to read the reviews and not just go by the average score.

However you still need more objective/technical reviews, such as done by photozone, etc. Taking the 17-50 Tamron, for example, you won't find a lot of "consumer" reviews mentioning the focus field curvature at 17mm (err... 17.01mm), yet as far as I know this is a designed-in property of the lens. It's incredibly obvious with certain subjects, but not a lot of reviews mention it.

The problem isn't reviewers only testing one copy, it's that manufacturers need to make every copy more reflective of the design capabilities. This seems to be much, much more of a problem with lenses than with toasters, or TVs, or computers, or automobiles, and it's not clear to me why that should be true.
I can't disagree. And yes, Amazon reviews (4.5 stars for this lens btw) are also big source of information. Still if I would trust Photozone only not trying this lens myself, I wouldn't have one. But I'm happy that I did .
01-26-2014, 10:42 AM   #15
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Pentax zooms have a track record of shoddy quality control when first launched. 16-50, 18-135 and 20-40 come to mind.
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