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08-03-2009, 01:10 PM   #1
Igilligan
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Pentax USA out of repair business

Thanks to Solarider over at Dpr for the info....
Pentax USA OUT of Repair Business?: Pentax SLR Talk Forum: Digital Photography Review


PENTAX Imaging Appoints CRIS as Exclusive Factory Service Center for Retailers and Consumers in the United States

PENTAX Imaging Appoints CRIS as Exclusive Factory Service Center for Retailers and Consumers in the United States

I have had nothing but good experiences with Pentax at Golden Co... shame to see them go.

08-03-2009, 02:25 PM   #2
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If the quality of service remains the same but turn around time improves I will be happy.
08-03-2009, 02:49 PM   #3
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Companies get into these sort of arrangements - ie outsourcing of customer support - to shave costs, not improve customer service. It's a worry.

What Pentax are also saying is that service and support aren't core business for them. The big disadvantage of this move for Pentax is that Pentax USA will now be at arms length from repairs and returns. Pentax will lose a lot of useful feedback about problems with their products as a result, which normally they'd be able to [theoretically] feed back into product improvements.

Deck chairs on the Titanic perhaps ...
08-03-2009, 02:57 PM   #4
Igilligan
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QuoteOriginally posted by rawr Quote
Companies get into these sort of arrangements - ie outsourcing of customer support - to shave costs, not improve customer service. It's a worry.

What Pentax are also saying is that service and support aren't core business for them. The big disadvantage of this move for Pentax is that Pentax USA will now be at arms length from repairs and returns. Pentax will lose a lot of useful feedback about problems with their products as a result, which normally they'd be able to [theoretically] feed back into product improvements.

Deck chairs on the Titanic perhaps ...
Maybe... but cheaper Deck chairs...

Maybe they looked at the life expectancy of the focus motors on the * lenses, and the QC issues they have been having with cameras and lenses, plus the sensor issues with the new K7 and said... We just don't want to deal with it.
Now, if you have complaints about service they can wash their hands of it to some degree... Kind of like they did during the "Rebate Days of Yore"

Or maybe it really is just a bottom line issue. Cut all that payroll so it looks good on the books in the next quarter!

08-03-2009, 03:00 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by rawr Quote
Companies get into these sort of arrangements - ie outsourcing of customer support - to shave costs, not improve customer service. It's a worry.
From my own experience this announcement means that Pentax is not going to be doing a bulk of the "everyday" repairs like mis-aligned viewfinders, pixel mapping etc. Usually when moving a bulk of your repairs to another company you are trying to save money but you are looking to improve turn-around time for repairs. A company fully staffed and able to repair the cameras will be able to fix/churn inventory more quickly than a smaller repair group from Pentax. If more systemic problems pop up then you send a handful of those units to a specialized engineering group within Pentax to address the issue. From my experience this is not necessarily a bad thing.
08-03-2009, 03:03 PM   #6
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They replaced an element in my FA 77 and brought it back to new condition this last year (I talked about it here somewhere) for under $80. I spoke with a guy there a couple of times (Randy or Mike maybe?) who couldn't have been more helpful. I hope they're not losing their jobs and that the level of service, which I've never heard a bad thing about, won't decline.

Last edited by JHfwp; 08-03-2009 at 06:37 PM.
08-03-2009, 04:17 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Igilligan Quote
PENTAX Imaging Appoints CRIS as Exclusive Factory Service Center for Retailers and Consumers in the United States
The outsourcing transition has already been made in Germany.

As a result, the state of Pentax service in Germany is in a complete mess right now. Up to a point where Hoya!! management in Japan started to reply and apologize to complaints sent by some members of German forum DFN ...
08-03-2009, 04:35 PM   #8
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Ha! I just got a repair est from criscam on my K20D

Got a problem with your K20D?

I don't but I was CURIOUS and filled in the blanks and got me a:

"$260" repair estimate for what-ever my undiagnosised & unspecified problem is.

At these prices I say you gotta broken pentax dslr then its best to consider it totalled and buy another new one instead complete with a shinny new warranty...


http://criscam.com/newsite/index.php


--Select A Type-- Digital-Compact Camera Digital-SLR Flash Unit Lens-Auto Focus Other Products

Make:
--Select A Make-- CANON FUJI HEWLETT KODAK MINOLTA NIKON OLYMPUS PENTAX SIGMA SONY

Model:
--Select A Model-- IST DL DIGITAL CAMERA IST DS DIGITAL CAMERA ISTD DIGITAL CAMERA ISTDL2 DIGITAL CAMERA ISTDS2 DIGITAL CAMERA K100 D SUPER DIGITAL CAMERA K100D DIGITAL CAMERA K10D DIGITAL CAMERA K110 D DIGITAL CAMERA K2000D DIGITAL CAMERA K200D DIGITAL CAMERA K20D DIGITAL CAMERA





Estimate:
$260.00
Free return shipping on approved repairs.
Repairs requiring a 'Hands On' estimate will
be charged a $12 return shipping fee if the estimate is refused.

08-03-2009, 04:39 PM   #9
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I had good experience with the old arrangement so I'm skeptical about the change but it's a very difficult economic environment and the good news, I guess, is that Pentax (I mean, Hoya) management is taking appropriate measures.
08-03-2009, 07:23 PM   #10
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Official Response from Pentax

Since I manage Product Marketing and Support for Pentax, I feel like I am in the best position to address this transition.

First, Pentax has outsourced our Repair Service for about eight years now.

We looked at our current repair processes and the cost involved and elected to make a change in service providers. The transition will allow us to provide a high level of service in a more cost effective manner.

As far as the service provider, CRIS has been a trusted Pentax Authorized Warranty Service center for a number of years. They have participated in every repair training seminar that our previous service provider had, so the level of repair skill is equivalent.

Additionally, CRIS has a "A" ranking with the Better Business Bureau. This is extremely difficult to attain unless you offer the best possible service.

CRIS also agreed to maintain the same repair pricing as Pentax previously had. There is no change in costs to have a camera repaired.

Finally, the person at CRIS responsible for Pentax is a former Pentax employee. He worked for a number of years in the Pentax Customer Service Department and also was a Product Manager for Pentax during the *ist years. He is passionate about Pentax and about offering the best level of service.

We are very excited about this transition and feel it will allow Pentax to provide a higher level of service to Pentaxians in the U.S.
08-03-2009, 07:53 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by JCPentax Quote
Since I manage Product Marketing and Support for Pentax, I feel like I am in the best position to address this transition.

First, Pentax has outsourced our Repair Service for about eight years now.

We looked at our current repair processes and the cost involved and elected to make a change in service providers. The transition will allow us to provide a high level of service in a more cost effective manner.

As far as the service provider, CRIS has been a trusted Pentax Authorized Warranty Service center for a number of years. They have participated in every repair training seminar that our previous service provider had, so the level of repair skill is equivalent.

Additionally, CRIS has a "A" ranking with the Better Business Bureau. This is extremely difficult to attain unless you offer the best possible service.

CRIS also agreed to maintain the same repair pricing as Pentax previously had. There is no change in costs to have a camera repaired.

Finally, the person at CRIS responsible for Pentax is a former Pentax employee. He worked for a number of years in the Pentax Customer Service Department and also was a Product Manager for Pentax during the *ist years. He is passionate about Pentax and about offering the best level of service.

We are very excited about this transition and feel it will allow Pentax to provide a higher level of service to Pentaxians in the U.S.
Well whoever you had out in Colorado, or wherever, may have been good but the service center you have/had in Chicago was just plain bad. My superprogram meter button failed and the only good thing was my warranty was only a few weeks out so they repaired it free. Bad thing is it failed again in about a year... I probably only shot 10-15 rolls of film...
Second experience: My *ist-D flash "hydraulics" were failing (again out of warranty but this time by a good 6 months). Felt it was a "hidden defect" since it really was not used that much. Told them about some hot pixels... Estimate came in at over $300........ ouch... paid it w/ regret now since sooo many seemed to have such good luck w/ colorado... should have just ignored the "slooooow" rising flash problem. I'm actually surprised I'm still here.. The "new" sensor bands more at high iso then the old one and it still came back w/ hot/stuck pixels. Just a whole lot less.......... sigh.......... should have stuck w/ the old sensor as well.. In my mind outsourcing is usually not a good thing anymore unless the company is extremely good and Pentax is extremely generous in their parts terms...
08-03-2009, 07:59 PM   #12
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Wow, I would say you hold on to slights a bit long. How old is the Super Program? Pentax hasn't had a company repair center in Chicago for over 14 years (longer than I have been at Pentax). We have Authorized Warranty shops around the country, but when items are out of warranty, they are completely independent shops.
08-03-2009, 08:15 PM   #13
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This isnt really surprising news. Here in Canada, Canon has been changing thier repair proceedures and service locations during the last year or so. I'd be lying if i said they were having an easy go of it.

Having Pentax US hand off thier repair work to another company means they spend less time fixing broken cameras and more time designing more solid products. ;-)
08-03-2009, 08:44 PM   #14
Igilligan
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Who should I thank then?

QuoteOriginally posted by JCPentax Quote
Since I manage Product Marketing and Support for Pentax, I feel like I am in the best position to address this transition.

First, Pentax has outsourced our Repair Service for about eight years now.

We looked at our current repair processes and the cost involved and elected to make a change in service providers. The transition will allow us to provide a high level of service in a more cost effective manner.

As far as the service provider, CRIS has been a trusted Pentax Authorized Warranty Service center for a number of years. They have participated in every repair training seminar that our previous service provider had, so the level of repair skill is equivalent.

Additionally, CRIS has a "A" ranking with the Better Business Bureau. This is extremely difficult to attain unless you offer the best possible service.

CRIS also agreed to maintain the same repair pricing as Pentax previously had. There is no change in costs to have a camera repaired.

Finally, the person at CRIS responsible for Pentax is a former Pentax employee. He worked for a number of years in the Pentax Customer Service Department and also was a Product Manager for Pentax during the *ist years. He is passionate about Pentax and about offering the best level of service.

We are very excited about this transition and feel it will allow Pentax to provide a higher level of service to Pentaxians in the U.S.
Thanks John,
But I am so confused now. So the people who I sent my camera to at the Pentax Service Center in Colorado last year and the year before were not from Pentax? The two really helpful service men that I dealt with on the phone were actually with another company?
I have nothing but praise for my dealings with those folks at the Pentax Service Center in Co. Address and Phone number, even if it was all just a ruse...

John, It seems everytime you answer a question in these forums lately, I realize just how little I know about the company I bought my camera and lenses from. Here I am on the phone with the Pentax service dept and they are talking to me about my camera and come to find out it was not Pentax at all, it was another service company.

Thanks for the clarity... and Kudos to whatever company actually did the service. I am sad to see them go and hope the next one will be as good.

In fact, who was the last company you were outsourcing repair with in Colorado? I would like to use them once my warranties run out.

Thanks
gus

Last edited by Igilligan; 08-03-2009 at 09:37 PM.
08-03-2009, 08:50 PM   #15
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Guess my DA* 16-50 will be one of the last lenses to be repaired at the Pentax Colorado facility...

That should increase its resale value, hopefully...

- Jason
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