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11-30-2011, 10:25 PM   #1
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K5 problem and customer service

Hi all, I posted a while back about some problems I was having with my K5 and the thread turned into a mess so it was closed. However I was asked by jerm1385 to post how things went with the service as they heard somepeople were having problems getting their cameras back. Well here goes but before I start I still think that the K5 is a stellar camera and I have had no problems with my K20D at all or my K100D. That said I am very dissapointed with customer service but I will give them the benefit of the doubt as the company has just been bought out but still.....I sent my K5 in to be repaired. I have a receipt showing they signed for it on Oct 24th. The guy I talked to before sending it in said it would take 15-20 days to repair but call in a week to see what is up. I called on the around the 31st of Oct. They said they just got the camera on the 27th and it would be fifteen to twenty days from then. I called 12th of nov they said they had received the camera on the 31st and it would be 15-20 from then. I mentioned that I had been told the 27th and it had gotten there on the 24th. The phone guy said that he saw that there was a hold on the camera because it was warenty work but then retracted that when I asked the obvious question about holding warenty work, so I waited. I just talked to someone at their repair site and she said the camera just got there yesterday which would be the 29th of Nov. I talked to a guy in a camera store a couple days ago and he said that he had never seen a camera come back from service in under two months, now they only sell Canon and Nikon so it really means nothing. If they would have just told me count on a couple of months this would not be bothering me so much but I guess I was foolish and booked some gigs that are coming up soon and it would be nice to get the camera back as it how I make my living. I hope this confusion is just because the company has just been bought but it still is frustrating. This company is seeming less professional all the time, I am wondering if I should have forked out for one of the pro cameras of Canon or Nikon. No doubt that K5 is an excellent camera and has outstanding image quality but this is not the way to run a company. Maybe it wasnt made to shoot under the demands of professional use where shooting a thousand or more pics a day. If anyone uses their K5 for this type of use I would love to hear how it is doing, it would help me in my decisions to come. Well there it is.

11-30-2011, 11:35 PM   #2
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While Pentax isn't exactly directly involved with repairs (they are handled by a third-party shop), it would be nice if they went back to doing it themselves...

As far as repairs go, don't expect any better service or reliability in the canikon world - I've heard that their general lens QA is even worse than that of Pentax with the K-5...

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11-30-2011, 11:38 PM   #3
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If your living depends on it, you should have at least 2 bodies anyway...
11-30-2011, 11:51 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by vonBaloney Quote
If your living depends on it, you should have at least 2 bodies anyway...
He already stated he had a K20D and K100, hence he actually has 3 bodies total...which actually has nothing to do with Pentax's customer service on his K5, the point of this thread. If I were in his position, sure the K20 would work as a great back up, but I would still find myself mightily irritated at the constantly shifting date of repair work on the body I was missing and might prefer to use.

12-01-2011, 03:41 AM   #5
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In about 10 months I put about 22K shutter clicks on my K5, frequently taking 500-1000 shots in a day. On 27 Oct I had to send my K5 into CRIS for warranty work. I too had a receipt showing when they received it but was never notified about how long it would take until after I sent an e-mail asking for a work order number and member number so I could track it online. I got my numbers in return along with a comment that repair could take 4-6 weeks. I never received any further e-mails from CRIS but in checking the status online recently they listed the repair action, said the camera was shipped on the Nov 28th. They provided a tracking number on the 29th. It's scheduled to arrive today. I don't have a lot of experience needing warranty work (lucky I guess) but I understand CRIS does good work and from what I can tell a 4 week turnaround is about average for them. The online status showed when they received my K5, when it went to repair, summarized my problem, listed all the items I sent, and described the outward condition of my camera. The online status never changed after that until the repair was apparently complete. I'd say CRIS's communication is pretty basic but didn't BS me and if the repair is good I'm satisfied.
12-01-2011, 03:49 AM   #6
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Sifu, have you tried with this solution?

12-01-2011, 08:21 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by suliabryon Quote
He already stated he had a K20D and K100, hence he actually has 3 bodies total...which actually has nothing to do with Pentax's customer service on his K5, the point of this thread. If I were in his position, sure the K20 would work as a great back up, but I would still find myself mightily irritated at the constantly shifting date of repair work on the body I was missing and might prefer to use.
Well, he seemed to be saying his gigs were in jeopardy, and he shouldn't let that happen. But you're right, of course he should be annoyed. This is something that Ricoh could possibly do something about. A couple of years ago, Pentax had other service centers (there was one here in Westminster CO I know because I was possibly the last person to get something done there) and then they switched everything over to CRIS for the whole US. And if they are going to be ramping up the marketing to sell more cameras, they are going to need more service so hopefully they will be ramping that up too. If they are not going to do it in-house, they need to authorize some other places and/or make their test equipment and parts supply available for others to do out-of-warranty repairs. (The latter might already be available, but no one wants it because Pentax isn't big enough to be worth it -- in any case CRIS is the only one with the ability to do repairs on broken control boards, etc.) That said, can anyone name a brand where you get quick repairs with great communication every time? Just doesn't seem to happen, or is very hit-or-miss because with multiple service centers some are better than others....
12-01-2011, 11:04 AM   #8
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I would be highly annoyed if they kept pushing the date back or claimed they received the camera at a later date then indicated by UPS. I'm not sure about the OP's extent of repairs, but the K-r I sent in had about a 2 1/2 week turn around for a broken flash. I also wish they would let the customer know when the camera is received. In comparison, I had a Nikon D7000 that needed to be sent in for hot pixels and back focusing. When they received the camera they notified me by email and provided links to check on the status. Unlike CRIS where you had to contact them to make sure they received everything.

12-01-2011, 06:33 PM   #9
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Thanks for the info!
12-01-2011, 06:39 PM   #10
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I had my K20 in for warranty repair at CRIS earlier this year. It took nearly 4 weeks as I remember. I actually drove down there and turned it in and also picked it up. Its (CRIS) relatively small - probably 5,000 square feet, clean and seemed to be well organized. They do warranty work for Canon, Nikon, Ricoh and Pentax, along with a couple others as I remember.

My repair was held for parts and that is the heart of my observation (from the outside looking in). If Pentax could stockpile adequate supplies of parts here to keep CRIS well stocked (especially for current models - under warranty), one would have to think that the parts hold wait times would disappear. The work flow would certainly reflect this and the repaired units would be returned much quicker.

That, is the fault of Pentax and for that I do wish that they would take positive action to correct this. It certainly would appear to be a straight forward approach. For each body model, they have to have a good set of statistics on what parts are in high demand, and these should be kept at adequate supplies. I can see that if a body needs to go back to Japan that it would take longer, however their current system certainly is showing some areas that some rather simple improvements to the process could certainly reduce the repair time considerably.

This could not cost any more that what it is currently costing (in parts and labor), and their customer service would certainly rise. It just seems to be such a simple fix.......


Last edited by interested_observer; 12-01-2011 at 09:24 PM.
12-01-2011, 06:39 PM   #11
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Thanks Adam, after a couple more calls I found out that I was talking to Pentax, finally I spoke to CRIS and they had not record of my earlier calls. It sounds like CRIS just got the camera and they are saying 20 business days, Pentax seems to have had it for the rest of the time. What I think is going on is that there are people working the phones at Pentax in Arizona who have no idea how things work. Maybe that is something that will get straightened out in the future under Ricoh who knows.
12-01-2011, 06:44 PM   #12
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Thanks, I actually have three Pentax bodies I can use. I also have four or five film cameras if I needed them then there is the medium format cameras and still I am underwhelmed by the service I am getting. It is not about being not able to shoot if I have to it is getting so many conflicting stories. Like I said if they would have said it will take two months then that would have been fine. I do however prefer to shoot the K5 over the others. With the sale on right now at B&H I could buy five K5s for the cost of a D3s.
12-01-2011, 06:48 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Sifu Quote
Thanks Adam, after a couple more calls I found out that I was talking to Pentax, finally I spoke to CRIS and they had not record of my earlier calls. It sounds like CRIS just got the camera and they are saying 20 business days, Pentax seems to have had it for the rest of the time. What I think is going on is that there are people working the phones at Pentax in Arizona who have no idea how things work. Maybe that is something that will get straightened out in the future under Ricoh who knows.
With my repair, I initially called Pentax. Their call center is - I think in North Carolina, anyway someplace back east. They said I could either send it to them or to CRIS directly. I took the direct route, which apparently cuts some time off the process. I would think that they should tell folks this directly.

Maybe the forum should get a letter or warranty repairs to Pentax with some suggestions - at least from a customer perspective.

12-01-2011, 06:53 PM   #14
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It would be a neat idea to set up a forum for just that -- everyone who sends an item into service could have a thread to document publicly every step of the process and how long it took for each. Then tell the Pentax folks about it and it will be in their interest to have good experiences rather than bad be seen on a public forum.
12-01-2011, 08:36 PM   #15
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We hear entirely too much about parts not stocked in the US. That's a Pentax problem - the selected repair organization should be required (not just allowed) to stock all standard replacement parts for current models.

I don't know if CRIS is trying to meet cost targets by keeping inventory low or Pentax will not sell them a full complement of spares and/or Pentax takes way too long to get parts from Japan to the US. Whichever the problem, it's up to Pentax to fix it.

The top LCD on my K-5 is operating erratically (lasted less than a year) and I will have to try warranty service for the first time in 4.5 years. I almost bought a second K-5 this weekend just to lower my frustration level after the box leaves my hands.

This parts problem is something that Ricoh could attend to promptly, even if it means advancing CRIS a parts inventory until the contract can be re-negotiated. This is something we should watch carefully.

Von has the right idea.

Adam ???
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