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05-24-2011, 03:28 AM   #16
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Henry, thanks for your response. Let me first clarify that I personally don't care about the label "grey market".

Others seem to care so it would seem appropriate that Chuck avoids misunderstandings.
QuoteOriginally posted by henryp Quote
Nothing in Chuck's post contradicts anything in any of my posts.
Sorry but there seems to be a contradiction when Chuck writes (in this post):
"For product sold out side the United States, please check with the manufacturer locally, to see if they will honor the USA warranty. This is entirely up to the discretion of the manufacture in question and out of the control of B&H.

All "USA" warranted items may be repaired in any manufacturer's authorized service facility world-wide if the item required in-warranty service. B&H can not stamp warranty cards as "international" nor offer a world wide option.

The "Direct Import" or Grey Market item would have to be returned to B&H Photo-Video Corp. in New York City if it required in-warranty attention.
"
What "Grey Market item" is Chuck referring to, if not a product sold by B&H to an international customer?

Again, I personally don't care about the "Grey Market" label. What I am interested in is whether or not I can send an item that I bought from B&H back to B&H (or Pentax USA?) for warranty service. I have asked this question twice before and I'd be grateful if you could answer it.

I may or may not get my local distributor to honour the USA warranty. If not, I'd like to know if I could send an item back to B&H for warranty service.

It seems to me that an answer to this question is much more relevant than an academic discussion about when to use a "Grey Market" label or not.

Thank you in advance for clarifying the warranty service situation for the case that a local distributor/manufactor does not honour the USA warranty for an item purchased at B&H by an international customer.


Last edited by Class A; 05-24-2011 at 04:42 AM.
05-24-2011, 04:56 AM   #17
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My only inside running is that I too am a photo retailer who has a dealer agreement with Pentax to which I must adhere. My relationship with B&H has no personal overlap, only a view that is perhaps slightly broader than most consumers since I deal with camera product sales not only as a user but as a sales person and as a buyer.

My suggestion to not worry about the market color of B&H's goods is not meant to silence anyone or beat someone down; rather it's a suggestion that if you happen to like the product and you like the price then there are service avenues you can follow to give you the confidence you wish for in a product. B&H sells SageMax warranties and my store happens to sell a different brand of warranty. You can search companies such as Mack, Consumer Priority Service and N.E.W for the details of the warranty.

Lastly B&H and the other photo retailers of their size don't get to be as successful as they do for as long as they do through illegitimate dealings of the sleazy, nefarious scam artists who are constantly fighting off attorneys general in fraud cases. B&H has developed a reputation for positive customer service that rather overwhelms the size of the question of their ability to handle an international service issue.
05-24-2011, 05:13 AM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by dnaseigel Quote
Do yourself a favor and don't worry about about the business practices of B&H regarding the market color of their products.
I concur with this recommendation.

QuoteOriginally posted by dnaseigel Quote
If you are truly concerned about the warranty, there are plenty of third party international warranties that extend way beyond the standard one year warranty offered by most manufacturers, and you can either buy it from B&H or someone else.
You may not intended to imply this, but I do not agree that one forfeits a manufacturer's warranty just because of the availability of third-party warranties.

First, I do not wish to pay extra if I am entitled to a manufacturer's warranty. Second, I do not wish to enter discussions with a third-party warranty company as to whether a repair bill is justified or not.

I feel that the question of whether it is possible to enjoy the benefits of a manufacturer's warranty as an international customer of B&H is a valid question whose relevance is not affected by the existence of third-party warranty offers. It is not entirely clear whether the "International Warranty" route works; it is furthermore unlikely that distributors / service centres local to the international customer will honour a USA warranty. It is therefore natural to enquire as to whether B&H will accept a purchased item back for warranty service and who pays what part of the shipping cost.
05-24-2011, 06:31 AM   #19
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This has come up many times in the past and henry will always take the tact that they are not Grey market. he's right of course they are an american company doing business in america supplied by pentax usa (and other official usa suppliers) so for americans making a purchase from them they are not grey market.
As Wheat and others have pointed out once it crosses a border it becomes greay market by definition. I spent 25 years in CES in Canada and I can tell you any product purchased from a US retailer would be considered "grey" by the canadian market. The local distributor may repair under warranty, but it is unlikely.
The international warranty card you can get from pentax USA is of course intended for Americans who are going to travel for an extended period, not for international buyers to circumvent the local distributor (who pays for warranty work out of profits from local sales - warranty is not funded per se by head office and varies from country to country.)

As for a 3rd party warranty that claims international service, from past experience i can safely say you will jump through a lot of hoops to get anything done, and in many cases will have to either ship to another country or pay for it and submit for reimbursement after getting an estimate approved. It's highly unlikely that any warranty provider has local service arranged in countries worldwide, though they may well for instance have some service arranged in neighboring countries where a lot of the business may have come from.

Personally I will buy items from another country only when the price differential makes it worthwhile for me to consider the product to have no warranty (or to be willing to pay to ship to the American service depot and the cost of return shipping)
In most cases I don't see that kind of saving to be had, but not all.

05-24-2011, 06:33 AM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by dnaseigel Quote
M
Lastly B&H and the other photo retailers of their size don't get to be as successful as they do for as long as they do through illegitimate dealings of the sleazy, nefarious scam artists who are constantly fighting off attorneys general in fraud cases. B&H has developed a reputation for positive customer service that rather overwhelms the size of the question of their ability to handle an international service issue.
No one implied they were sleazy i think they are very reputable, but they don't buy or do business in canada so from my perspective they are grey market. in the US they are not Grey and are one of the best dealers in the US IMHO, just not a canadian (or australian or french....) dealer so in other countries these purchases do not inherently come with a warranty form the local distribution arm
05-24-2011, 10:18 AM   #21
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It seems we want to have as many definitions of "grey market" as there are participants in this thread. This reminds me of a possibly apocryphal anecdote I once heard ascribed to Houdini.

Houdini asked, "If we call a dog's tail a leg, how many legs does a dog have?"
Of course many replied, "Five. The dog then has five legs."
Houdini's reply, "No. Four. Calling it a leg doesn't make it a leg."

It is simple to say from my perspective they are grey market or words to that effect. The fact is what would make a product "grey market" or not is the retailer's source. B&H buys Pentax products from Pentax USA. They are therefore not "grey market." That's the fact, not an interpretation or a statement subject to interpretation or regional variances.

Someone born in the USA is an American citizen. They don't lose that citizenship when visiting London.
05-24-2011, 10:34 AM - 1 Like   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by henryp Quote
It seems we want to have as many definitions of "grey market" as there are participants in this thread. This reminds me of a possibly apocryphal anecdote I once heard ascribed to Houdini.

Houdini asked, "If we call a dog's tail a leg, how many legs does a dog have?"
Of course many replied, "Five. The dog then has five legs."
Houdini's reply, "No. Four. Calling it a leg doesn't make it a leg."

It is simple to say from my perspective they are grey market or words to that effect. The fact is what would make a product "grey market" or not is the retailer's source. B&H buys Pentax products from Pentax USA. They are therefore not "grey market." That's the fact, not an interpretation or a statement subject to interpretation or regional variances.

Someone born in the USA is an American citizen. They don't lose that citizenship when visiting London.

Henry from all canadian retailer perspectives your product is the equivalent of gray as there is no warranty when it crosses the border. it was not bought through a Pentax Canada authorized dealer. not as nasty as some of the trans shipped deals and the sleazy dealers selling refurb as new etc, or product shipped from the orientsw to sell in n/a .... i'm sure you are aware of all the variants.
If an american buys a pentax product from Henrys or Aden camera up here he and ha it a shipped to the USA, it does not come with a pentax USA warranty, it does have a pentax canada warranty. How Pentax US handles this I don't know, but pentax canada for instance had a handling fee in place to offset the loss of income from a canadian sale for international warranty product (a 1 year warranty BTW where the Pentax canada warranty is 2 years

to quote pentax canada specifically

This limited two-year warranty is composed of a one-year manufacturer’s warranty, as well as an additional 2nd year domestic warranty. This two-year warranty applies only to PENTAX products originally distributed by PENTAX Canada Inc., 1770 Argentia Road, Mississauga, ON L5N 3S7, and purchased within Canada from a PENTAX authorized dealer. This limited warranty covers any defects in original factory materials and workmanship. If your PENTAX product malfunctions due to such a defect within this two-year period, PENTAX Canada Inc. will repair it at no charge. This warranty does not cover any damage caused to the product, including, but not limited to: impact, moisture, liquid, sand, excessive temperature, battery leakage, chemical corrosion, mishandling, operation contrary to operating instructions, tampering, modification, or servicing by an unauthorized person(s) or repair facility. PENTAX shall not be liable for any consequential or incidental damages, such as memory cards, batteries, travel expenses, loss of time, etc. This warranty only applies to PENTAX photographic equipment originally distributed in Canada by PENTAX Canada Inc, 1770 Argentia Road, Mississauga, ON L5N 3S7 and purchased within Canada from a PENTAX authorized dealer. This warranty applies to the original owner only and is non-transferable.

As you can see it make no mention of product not sold by them through the canadian dealer network

for the international warranty (1 year not 2 the following applies)

The dated proof of purchase receipt (bill of sale) must be provided to ensure warranty status. For PENTAX products purchased outside of Canada, a stamped international warranty card must also be provided. - (this would exclude you by your definition of not doing this)

If a dated proof of purchase receipt (and a stamped international warranty card if purchased outside of Canada) is not received with the product, a repair estimate will be issued.

International Warranty Repairs

Any PENTAX product purchased outside of Canada and sent to PENTAX Canada Inc. or any of its Authorized Service Centres for International warranty repair will be subject to a $50.00 handling fee.

Please Note: PENTAX Canada Inc. only services the Canadian market and will only receive and/or ship product within Canada. If you live outside Canada and require service for your PENTAX product, please contact a PENTAX representative in your own country/region. Click here for a listing.

Edit - BTW the savings for me on a DA16-50 for instance would be $70 vs a local chain, but i would lose a years warranty and have to pay s&h, and wait for it rather than just pick up. for some this may be enough but for what would end up being about a $50 saving for one year less warranty and a fee of $50 if i needed the warranty it's not for me.

Last edited by eddie1960; 05-24-2011 at 10:53 AM.
05-24-2011, 01:24 PM - 1 Like   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by henryp Quote
Someone born in the USA is an American citizen. They don't lose that citizenship when visiting London.
And a Pentax bought in America is still American when in London and a repair facility there will consider it 'Grey' as it has not being purchased via the U.K distribution chain.

As you have said B&H do not stamp and supply the International Warranty.

You still fail to address the questions put to you by Class A regarding B&H support for returns for repair, to B&H, from outside America on goods purchased from B&H.

We, sadly, are left to conclude that there is no warranty service on goods purchased from B&H by customers residing outside the U.S.A.

05-25-2011, 02:46 AM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by henryp Quote
It is simple to say from my perspective they are grey market or words to that effect. The fact is what would make a product "grey market" or not is the retailer's source. B&H buys Pentax products from Pentax USA. They are therefore not "grey market." That's the fact, not an interpretation or a statement subject to interpretation or regional variances.
They are therefore not "grey market", but ONLY FROM YOUR PERSPECTIVE. If I, someone living in Australia, bought a Pentax camera from B&H, it becomes grey market and were I to try to get warranty service from the Australian distributor, then I'd be out of luck. Please see below for the Australian Pentax distributor's policy on parallel and grey imports, webpage here.

QuoteOriginally posted by C.R.Kennedy Website:
C.R.Kennedy & Company Pty Ltd are the sole authorised Australian distributors for Pentax, Sigma, Hasselblad and iriver.

Parallel and Grey Imports are described as product imported directly into a country by a company or persons other than the manufacturer's authorised distributor in that country.

Please Note

1) CR Kennedy & Company Pty Ltd does not provide any warranty or guarantee for parallel /grey imports. We will not honour any warranty or guarantee supplied by parallel importers...
QuoteOriginally posted by henryp Quote
That's the fact, not an interpretation or a statement subject to interpretation or regional variances.
I personally find this last sentence quite laughable, considering it isn't the fact. Having said that, I'm not saying you've been saying is wrong (except that last part where you just said it's the fact). On the contrary, I believe that what you're saying is true, to an extent and from your point of view. What I also believe, is that what others, including myself, are saying, is also true, from our points of view.
05-25-2011, 05:08 AM - 1 Like   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by henryp Quote
It seems we want to have as many definitions of "grey market" as there are participants in this thread. This reminds me of a possibly apocryphal anecdote I once heard ascribed to Houdini.

Houdini asked, "If we call a dog's tail a leg, how many legs does a dog have?"
Of course many replied, "Five. The dog then has five legs."
Houdini's reply, "No. Four. Calling it a leg doesn't make it a leg."

It is simple to say from my perspective they are grey market or words to that effect. The fact is what would make a product "grey market" or not is the retailer's source. B&H buys Pentax products from Pentax USA. They are therefore not "grey market." That's the fact, not an interpretation or a statement subject to interpretation or regional variances.

Someone born in the USA is an American citizen. They don't lose that citizenship when visiting London.
Henry, give it up, you are wrong on this and are making yourself look ignorant. You are an international retailer refusing to take anything other than an Americentric view of the subject of your international retailing.
To use your own metaphor, and American citizen is an American citizen in London, but they won't necessarily get the free medical treatment that a UK citizen would be eligible for.
05-25-2011, 06:49 AM   #26
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
Henry, give it up, you are wrong on this and are making yourself look ignorant.
I disagree with both the suggestion I am wrong and that I make myself look ignorant. Reasonable people may agree to disagree on this and I am perfectly happy to be reasonable, but I am neither wrong nor ignorant. I do not see how personal attacks and invective further reasonable discourse.

QuoteQuote:
As you have said B&H do not stamp and supply the International Warranty.
We ship Pentax merchandise to customers exactly as we receive them from Pentax USA and, as has been noted, Pentax has a simple and direct method for a customer to get an international warranty card from them, which is the appropriate source.

QuoteQuote:
We, sadly, are left to conclude that there is no warranty service on goods purchased from B&H by customers residing outside the U.S.A.
Perhaps we should not be so hasty in our presumptions. It's been demonstrated here amply that Pentax USA supplies an international warranty document upon request.

QuoteOriginally posted by Class A Quote
If I buy from B&H, how do I obtain a valid International Warranty Card?
  1. By sending "A copy of your dated proof of purchase, with the name and address of the U.S. dealer" to PENTAX Imaging Company, 600 12th Street, Suite 300, Golden, CO 80401? Will they also accept an email with a scan? Seems odd that I would have to send a copy from another country to a postal address. Will they pay for the postage of getting the card to me (overseas!)?
From Digital Cameras and Accessories - Official PENTAX Imaging Web Site:
International Warranty Card
New PENTAX products do not automatically come with an international warranty that covers all PENTAX products around the world. However, it is possible to obtain an International Warranty Card through PENTAX Imaging Company after you have purchased a PENTAX product. If you bought your PENTAX product in the United States and are traveling to a foreign country for an extended period of time, we can send you an International Warranty Card to cover your product while you are abroad. We will also send you a list of authorized service centers around the world.

To obtain an International Warranty Card, please send the below-listed items to PENTAX Imaging Company, 600 12th Street, Suite 300, Golden, CO 80401:
  • A copy of your dated proof of purchase, with the name and address of the U.S. dealer.
  • The serial number on your PENTAX product (if it has one).
If you bought your PENTAX product in another country, and you are planning to visit the United States, we can send you an International Warranty Card to cover your product while you are within the United States. You will need to send us the following items:
A copy of your dated proof of purchase.
The serial number on your PENTAX product (if it has one).
We will fill out an International Warranty Card and mail it to you. The time period and product coverage provided by the International Warranty Card is the same as the standard PENTAX Limited Warranty (as specified above).
This seems entirely straightforward. I presume anyone can use the site's "Contact us" page for additional clarification. Since this matter resides between the end-user and Pentax I do not have firsthand knowledge of who pays postage nor can I say whether or not Pentax will accept a scan, but the avenue by which these questions can be answered by Pentax is the contact page above, I believe.

If the item in question was "grey market," Pentax USA probably wouldn't issue the International Warranty Card.

Last edited by henryp; 05-25-2011 at 10:52 AM.
05-25-2011, 07:22 AM - 3 Likes   #27
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henry you are just being obstinate and choose to ignore what has been posted by other users quoting other countries pentax distributors.
you aren't gray market for US purchases, outside the US you amount to Gray market defacto as you aren't buying from the local supply chain and shipping from within that country
bloody arrogant attitude,
honestly if you can't accept the fact that other countries don't recognize you as a local dealer (and therefore "gray market" from their perspective) you are just being blind to the reality.
Like I said, i likely wouldn't buy unless i thought the saving represented was enough for me to live without warranty. I will buy colour film in bulk as you have about the best price i can get and i'm not concerned with warranty on film (the canadian film distributors live on another planet price wise, but as they revalue based on our dollars change that will likely get better)
You are dropping it back on pentax while insisting what you sell has a warranty valid in another country. from the canadian and australian distributor perspective this is clearly not accurate
I imagine the european distributors are the same
I'll clarify it for everyone one more time. Warranty is not a function of the corporate head office in Japan, it is determined by Local distribution and paid for out of Local distributions profits. It's not even the same length in all countries (pentax USA DSLR=1Year, Pentax Canada DSLR =2 years, Sigma Canada has a 10 year warranty versus the USA warranty of 4 years, or a 1 year international warranty which Sigma canada would honour -9 years less than if i buy local - big differences)

People need to be aware of the inherent issues with Buying from a foreign retailer. You are only correct in your assertion that you are a legitimate dealer who buys from Pentax (and others) USA. you choose to ignore the fact that this does not make you an authorized dealer worldwide. Classically this is the type of arrogant attitude that many of us despise about America in many areas.
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