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01-06-2011, 12:07 PM   #46
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
A little bitter are we? You do realize that professionals have back up equipment on the offchance that something bad happens?
I'm so happy that you're able to own so many cameras, losing your newest one for weeks doesn't affect your business in any way. I'm sure all the struggling professionals who are trying to cope in this crippled economy agree with you. Especially the new start-ups who have put their faith in Pentax.

QuoteOriginally posted by Cannikin Quote
I didn't have to pay a cent for shipping, as Pentax paid for it. And on top of that they're eating a huge loss now replacing all the defective units with new ones (as opposed to waiting to refurbish what you send in, likely with a much more lengthy delay).
Good for you! I had to pay. And since it had to be insured for $1600 and go cross-continent in the fastest way possible, the cost was outrageous. Funny, I'm pretty sure we both dealt with the exact same company. It's great that not all customers are being treated the same. Now I feel even more bitter.

BOOHOOHOO! The tears just won't stop flowing at the thought of Pentax losing money because the product they sold was defective! Too bad it's not upsetting enough to make me forget about the money *I* wasted as a result of buying this product.

edit: what the hell are you talking about, anyways? All Pentax has to do is get non-defective sensor assemblies from their supplier (for free, since it's to replace defective ones they received), put them in the defective cameras, reset/clean the bodies, and then sell them again as new. Actual loss is minimal, if any. Stop whining about things you have no understanding of.

QuoteOriginally posted by Cannikin Quote
What more do you expect? Do you want them to pay you now?
That's stupid, why would I expect them to pay me? Most companies specifically state they're only responsible for the cost of the product they sold you. Haven't you ever read a basic warranty agreement? However it would be nice if:

a) a new camera was cross-shipped to me
b) I didn't have to pay nearly $70 to ship the camera to them
c) I wasn't left without a camera for WEEKS!!!!!!!

When my cheap consumer-level hard drive failed, the manufacturer cross-shipped me a new one. I was without a hard drive for a day. And I didn't have to pay for return shipping. That's not even professional gear, that's cheap crap for Joe Everybody. When my TV broke, some guy came to fix it within 2 days, and it didn't cost me a dime. When he couldn't fix it on-site, he pulled a loaner out of his truck until mine could be fixed at the shop. It's not even one of those expensive new HDTVs. THAT'S the right way to treat a customer.

At no point did the companies of the above-mentioned products say "Gee, I hope you have a spare one until we can take care of you! Be sure to spend money sending those things to us first."


Last edited by Hound Tooth; 01-06-2011 at 12:16 PM.
01-06-2011, 01:12 PM - 1 Like   #47
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QuoteOriginally posted by Hound Tooth Quote
I'm so happy that you're able to own so many cameras, losing your newest one for weeks doesn't affect your business in any way. I'm sure all the struggling professionals who are trying to cope in this crippled economy agree with you. Especially the new start-ups who have put their faith in Pentax.


Lets imagine for a moment that you get a perfect camera in every way. AF works perfectly in all light, the sensor is operating room clean and the exposure system is spot on.
And you are on a job, someone bumps your tripod (you do have a tripod?) and the whole kit topples over, breaking both camera and lens.

Answer this question:

What is your back up plan?


1) If the answer is to tell the minister to hold up the wedding for a month or so while you wait for your camera to come back from repair, you don't have a good plan.

2) If the answer is to tell the minister to hold up the wedding for an hour while you run to the local camera shop and buy a replacement, you don't have a good plan.


3) If the answer is to tell the minister to hold up the wedding for a few minutes while you get another camera and lens out of your kit, you are close to having a good plan.


4) If the answer is your assistant hands you another camera and grabs a broom to quietly sweep the mess out of the way so that the ceremony can go on with as little drama as possible, then you have a plan.

What is your plan?


If you answered 1 or 2, you need to rethink your plan.
01-06-2011, 01:17 PM   #48
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It's interesting that you immediately leaped to the wedding photographer scenario. It's a damn good thing I'm not a wedding photographer. Do you have a wider range of wisdom into professional photography? Or are you limited to weddings?

When I found out that others were getting free shipping, I got in touch with a Pentax rep and asked "WTF?" (using friendly words) They agreed to refund the money I spent on shipping. Now I'm slightly less bitter.
01-06-2011, 04:16 PM   #49
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QuoteOriginally posted by Hound Tooth Quote
BOOHOOHOO! The tears just won't stop flowing at the thought of Pentax losing money because the product they sold was defective! Too bad it's not upsetting enough to make me forget about the money *I* wasted as a result of buying this product.

edit: what the hell are you talking about, anyways? All Pentax has to do is get non-defective sensor assemblies from their supplier (for free, since it's to replace defective ones they received), put them in the defective cameras, reset/clean the bodies, and then sell them again as new. Actual loss is minimal, if any. Stop whining about things you have no understanding of.
Maybe you should do a little math, and understand the economics of recalls.

First of all, shipping alone for this incident can easily cost over a million dollars. They can no longer take advantage of bulk shipping, and must rely on very expensive end-to-end parcel shipping, not to mention moving the units back and forth from manufacturing centers. Second, the "supplier" of the assembled sensor array for Pentax is... Pentax/Hoya. Sony manufactures the sensors, but the assembly has to be done by Pentax itself, because it is integrated into their proprietary SR/Dust reduction systems. Thus, the cost of replacement and reassembly will be borne by Pentax itself.

Say we assume a very conservative estimate of $100 per unit cost for repair and shipping (probably more than that, considering I know for a fact my own camera will cost $40-50 round trip shipping). When considering tens of thousands of affected units, this is several million dollars in losses.

An even bigger problem is, a large portion of Pentax's very limited production capacity is now devoted to producing replacement cameras which generate no revenue, as they go straight back to customers. Thus, the revenue stream from their K-5 line is effectively frozen. By the time the refurbished cameras make it back to market several months later, their market value will have depreciated. Even a 10% loss of value is huge.

In the end, no matter what, Pentax is going to eat several million, if not tens of millions of dollars in losses due to this incident. Hardly "minimal if any".

There's a reason why "simple fix" limited recalls have costed Sony hundreds of millions of dollars in the battery recall, and Microsoft billions in the RROD incident (even with refurbishing). Pentax is a much smaller company, and accordingly such losses are much more severe.

01-06-2011, 04:40 PM   #50
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QuoteOriginally posted by Cannikin Quote
There's a reason why "simple fix" limited recalls have costed Sony hundreds of millions of dollars in the battery recall, and Microsoft billions in the RROD incident (even with refurbishing). Pentax is a much smaller company, and accordingly such losses are much more severe.
Am I supposed to feel bad for companies that create exploding batteries intended to sit in a person's lap? Or for a convicted criminal company that sells garbage? I didn't say a recall was necessary. Recalls aren't typically done unless there's a safety risk anyways. What I said was I'm being treated like crap for daring to give Pentax boat loads of money. Pentax treats me worse than other manufacturers have in the past. And Pentax refuses to warn its customers that there may be a defect in the product we spent thousands of dollars on, instead choosing to let us find out the hard way. I didn't find out about this issue until I took a picture, noticed some weird stains, paid to have the camera cleaned, and then was told the stains weren't coming off. At that point, I did a search online and learned of this widespread issue.

I filled out the product registration! They know exactly what the serial number of my camera is! Pentax knew damn well how to get in touch with me and let me know about this! They refused to, and it cost me money for nothing! You apologists baffle me. Making excuses for your pet mega-corporation.

(nice try, pretending Hoya is a "small company")

Last edited by Hound Tooth; 01-06-2011 at 04:45 PM.
01-06-2011, 06:05 PM   #51
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QuoteOriginally posted by Hound Tooth Quote
It's interesting that you immediately leaped to the wedding photographer scenario. It's a damn good thing I'm not a wedding photographer. Do you have a wider range of wisdom into professional photography? Or are you limited to weddings?

Wedding, portraiture, product...pretty much a studio generalist.
Oh and an award winning and published landscape photographer.

My advice would apply to anyone who is taking on photography as a profession.
What is your plan if your studio flash conks out unexpectedly?
What is your plan if your outdoor portrait session gets rained out?
For that matter, what is your plan if your car doesn't start and your 9:00 AM business portrait is sitting waiting for you to arrive at the studio?

Do you have the equipment that you need to continue shooting if a key piece of equipment breaks?
Yes? Good for you.
No? You need a better plan.

If it makes you feel better, though I expect it won't, I'm on a first name basis with the Pentax rep and he didn't phone me about bad sensors or front focusing either.
I rather imagine that his take would be, Bill, why not send the camera in for repair?
01-06-2011, 06:13 PM   #52
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
Do you have the equipment that you need to continue shooting if a key piece of equipment breaks?
If the flagship camera body is gone and can't be used, it affects the business. I really don't care about your business ideals. Not all struggling start-ups can afford multiple high-end defective cameras. My K-x and 2 film bodies are hardly the equal to the K-5, especially when I had to lose the K-7 just to be able to afford the K-5.

QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
If it makes you feel better, though I expect it won't, I'm on a first name basis with the Pentax rep and he didn't phone me about bad sensors or front focusing either.
I rather imagine that his take would be, Bill, why not send the camera in for repair?
Funny. When I worked at an automotive paint store as a mixing lab tech, our Dupont rep would walk through a hail of bullets to let us know that one of the paint bases might have a defect. He'd recommend we inform all our customers that might've been affected, and arrange for full reparations. It happened a couple of times (not the hail of bullets part), and all our customers were always taken care of thanks to him. It's sad that you've come to accept your Pentax rep's lack of care as par for the course.

Last edited by Hound Tooth; 01-06-2011 at 07:14 PM.
01-06-2011, 07:56 PM - 1 Like   #53
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You people are worse than apologists, you're facilitators. You've been treated like crap by Pentax for so long, you actually accept this as normal! Apparently none of you know what REAL professional service is like.

Ask any mechanic who's broken an expensive, vital tool in the past about how his Snap-On or Mac Tools rep treated him. None of this crap about having a backup tool. No BS about waiting weeks for replacement. The rep will bend over backwards to make sure the mechanic can finish his job, because he knows that otherwise the mechanic doesn't get PAID and his family doesn't EAT!!! And a mechanic that doesn't get paid is a mechanic that doesn't buy more tools. THAT'S "professional service". Not low-end consumer-level crap, but actual support from a company chosen to provide tools that get used to make a living. That's the difference between a PROFESSIONAL tool and some generic crap you buy at Home Depot. I can give countless examples, even in the field of photography (even from lowly printing paper manufacturers!!!). They all put Pentax's quality of service to shame.

I've heard the same kinds of stories from professional Nikon and Canon users. Loaner cameras in times of need, express service to minimize downtime, good reps who advise them when there might be a problem with their equipment, and how to deal with it until it can be resolved.

Bottom line: Pentax treats its professionals the same way they do the countless thousands of casual consumers who've purchased an Optio E90 point-and-shoot camera. That's NOT professional service. It's an insult. And all you apologists/facilitators make it worse.

01-06-2011, 11:12 PM   #54
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QuoteOriginally posted by Hound Tooth Quote
If the flagship camera body is gone and can't be used, it affects the business. I really don't care about your business ideals. Not all struggling start-ups can afford multiple high-end defective cameras. My K-x and 2 film bodies are hardly the equal to the K-5, especially when I had to lose the K-7 just to be able to afford the K-5.



So, what is your back up plan?
I am curious about your business ideals.

Or are you a GWC with pretensions?
01-06-2011, 11:43 PM   #55
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
So, what is your back up plan?
I am curious about your business ideals.

Or are you a GWC with pretensions?
I'm not going to share my religious beliefs, my political leaning, nor my "business ideals" with you. Get over it.

Whatever my "business ideals" may be (whatever that's supposed to mean), it doesn't make my point any less valid.

Last edited by Hound Tooth; 01-06-2011 at 11:53 PM.
01-07-2011, 03:43 AM   #56
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
So, what is your back up plan?
I am curious about your business ideals.

Or are you a GWC with pretensions?
Bit harsh whatever the guys delusions
01-07-2011, 05:24 AM   #57
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QuoteOriginally posted by Hound Tooth Quote
I'm not going to share my religious beliefs, my political leaning, nor my "business ideals" with you. Get over it.

Whatever my "business ideals" may be (whatever that's supposed to mean), it doesn't make my point any less valid.
Fair enough. I was wondering what "business ideal" were, I was just quoting what you said.
Your point is perfectly valid, I was just trying to point out to you that you can be 100% right and 100% dead in the water without a back up plan that involves redundancy of equipment.
I'll use a driving metaphor if you will.
You might have a green light, but if your motorcycle gets plugged by a truck running a red light, you are dead, no matter who is at fault.

Both Nikon and Canon have pro programs for their top end models, but if you don't sign up for them (I believe there is a cost involved) you are treated just like any punter.
I don't think they offer the service to cameras in the K5 price class, and if you don't have the pro program, you don't get instant replacement of equipment and the like. You will be treated very similarly to how you feel you are being mistreated by Pentax.

The Pro programs would elevate the service levels to something like what you described with Mac tools or Dupont paint (neither of which are aimed at the guy working out of his back yard with axle stands under a shade tree).
However to get there, you will be spending probably double on your camera, plus extra to join the club. In Canada, I believe you would also need to be a member of the pro photographer's association and have a legitimate business license (which is verified, IIRC).
The grass may seem greener on the other side of the fence, but often that is because the fertilizer costs a lot more.
01-07-2011, 05:57 AM   #58
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QuoteOriginally posted by Hound Tooth Quote
BOOHOOHOO! The tears just won't stop flowing at the thought of Pentax losing money because the product they sold was defective! Too bad it's not upsetting enough to make me forget about the money *I* wasted as a result of buying this product.

edit: what the hell are you talking about, anyways? All Pentax has to do is get non-defective sensor assemblies from their supplier (for free, since it's to replace defective ones they received), put them in the defective cameras, reset/clean the bodies, and then sell them again as new. Actual loss is minimal, if any. Stop whining about things you have no understanding of.
Well who is gonna pay for what is still a question. Maybe Pentax has to pay the bill, or maybe they can share it with Sony for not bringing the expacted sensor-units.

The costs are not minimal. True the camera is good after cleaning, so no loss there. But still to get the sensor unit out off the body there is a need for some disassembly. This takes time and time is money. Cleaning, new box and new cables, new groundplate (my guess) with a new chassisnumber, new manuals. And then the shippingcosts around the world. The loss of sales in this time because customers wait it out.

I must say that the plans that Wheatfield is talking about sounds good. (deserves a new topic to me) At least better then the plans I have at the time. With the K-5 I was up for a second body (next to the K-7), but sold the K-7 and bought a second K-5 instead. So now one in house (clean) and one send back for replace.
01-07-2011, 06:39 AM   #59
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
I don't think they offer the service to cameras in the K5 price class, and if you don't have the pro program, you don't get instant replacement of equipment and the like.
Actually I'm pretty sure the Nikon D300/D300s and Canon 7D are eligible for pro service. Both of those cameras are in the exact same price class. And the Nikon D700 and Canon 5D Mark II are only a small price step above those, relatively speaking.

QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
The Pro programs would elevate the service levels to something like what you described with Mac tools or Dupont paint (neither of which are aimed at the guy working out of his back yard with axle stands under a shade tree).
However to get there, you will be spending probably double on your camera, plus extra to join the club. In Canada, I believe you would also need to be a member of the pro photographer's association and have a legitimate business license (which is verified, IIRC).
That all sounds fantastic to me! I would HAPPILY pay an annual fee for this kind of support for professional tools. But you're wrong about:

a) Dupont and Mac tools not being for shadetree mechanics. We did sell paint to small independents, and they were covered the same way as our pro customers. Such is the benefit of paying the extra premium for using pro-grade products rather than Home Hardware consumer products. I can also get my local Snap-On dealer to visit me regularly if I want. I work from home these days.

b) As pointed out above, it's hardly 2x the camera cost. Eligible cameras are about the same cost.

Don't get me wrong, I love my Pentax gear. It's amazing stuff that allows me to be creative. But the service... ugh, the service. QC problems happen, and I don't hold that against any manufacturer. It's the way that a company handles these events that defines them. This latest fiasco (and my recent SDM adventures) has made me strongly consider jumping ship.
01-07-2011, 06:51 AM   #60
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There are only 48 weeks in a year...so how can cameras produced in 50th week of 2010 are alright
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