Nikon-Non US Warranty-So?

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by Alan Calan, Aug 30, 2007.

  1. Alan Calan

    Alan Calan Guest

    How much does it matter about USA Warranties? Are these cameras
    different? Are they made with different materials? What happens if
    they break? Is the warranty coverage only a year?

    How do you tell the difference between legit stores selling cameras
    with out the US warranties and and stores that never deliver the

    If the warranty is for a year and the saving is 50%, it might pay to
    take the chance buying a camera that was sold to Italy first then

    I'm sure this is not the first time this question has been asked and I
    apologize for the repition but I would love to buy a D200 with a good
    VR lens. I just took pictures at a family wedding and I really think
    I could benefit from the VR but for better prices than you can do at
    B&H. What about a store like Abe's of Maine, which has been around
    for decades?

    Had it not been for the announcement of the D300, I probably would
    have had the D200 already.
    Alan Calan, Aug 30, 2007
    1. Advertisements

  2. To whom?
    Possible, but unlikely. Although manufacturers have been known to sell the
    same product under different names or with different options in different
    regions of the world.
    Even less likely.
    Then they don't work any longer.
    That depends very much on the dealer, the manufacturer, and the legal
    requirements in the country of purchase.
    That line may not be very sharp and often along "if we get it overseas then
    we have it, otherwise we won't deliver".
    Depending upon where "here" is you may have the same rights as when
    purchased locally and can even sue locally within the EU. A lot has changed
    in the last few years regarding online purchases from other EU countries.

    Jürgen Exner, Aug 30, 2007
    1. Advertisements

  3. Alan Calan

    Bruce Guest

    Hi, This is a reply I rec'd from Nikon when I asked them about my UK bought
    Nikon D80 that had a USA serial number.


    "Thank you for your correspondence.

    If after entering your serial number you may experience "Error 3; Incorrect
    model/serial number combination". In this case your camera does not have a
    European serial number.

    If this error appears your camera does not have a European serial number and
    you may have unwittingly purchased a grey import. Unfortunately, we are
    unable to govern the source of an independent company's product as this
    would breach free trade laws. We do recommend checking the product source
    with the retailer prior to purchase, and for your future information we list
    recommended retailers and online retailers on our website.

    At this stage, we would also recommend clarifying with your dealer your
    warranty situation, as we are unable to offer a worldwide warranty for our
    Digital Imaging products (internal components may differ due to localised
    operating systems, voltage requirements, radio emission laws, broadcast
    standards and software licensing). Warranties offered on these products are
    regional only and this is also the case for similar products from the
    majority our competitors.

    I would, of course, like to confirm that we will happily offer technical
    support for your product.

    For more information about Grey Market product click here

    If you have any further questions please contact us.

    Kind regards,

    Aled Thomas.
    Bruce, Aug 30, 2007
  4. Alan Calan

    ASAAR Guest

    On Wed, 29 Aug 2007 22:37:47 -0400, Alan Calan wrote:

    [in reverse order]
    I've never dealt with Abe's of Maine so I can't say for sure, but
    it sounds like the type of outfit that would be much more unpleasant
    to deal with than B&H, Adorama, Staples, etc. if there were any
    problems with purchased items. IIRC, B&H allows exchanges, store
    credit and refunds, where J&R only allows exchanges and it some
    cases, store credit. For other stores you'll have to do your own
    research. Everyone, not just you benefits from lower prices. But
    as B&H's and Adorama's prices are already pretty reasonable, you
    won't often save very much by shopping elsewhere, unless you're
    dealing with a sleazy outfit. I have no idea as to whether Abe's
    fits in this category or not. You can gamble with Abe's. I don't.

    The price difference is much, much less than 50%. Check B&H's
    online product lists which give different prices depending on
    whether the product is gray market (non-USA) or USA. Based on vague
    memory, it's probably close to a 5% savings. If the difference is
    much greater, it's probably not a new item.

    I don't know of any stores that never deliver the merchandise, but
    then I've dealt primarily with known entities. B&H, Adorama, J&R,
    Calumet, Staples, Circuit City,, etc. There's a ratings
    website that can give you a pretty good idea of the company's
    trustworthiness, but I'm not absolutely sure of the URL. It might

    The cameras are the same. Same materials. If you're worried
    about the coverage, either because you didn't buy a USA market
    product or because you want to increase the coverage, you can get an
    extended warranty. B&H and Adorama sell Mack warranties, which vary
    in cost and length. Mack's 5 year extended, full coverage warranty
    was about $40 for Nikon's D50. It should be proportionately more
    expensive for a D200 or D300. If the camera breaks and it's not
    gray market and is longer covered by a warranty, you can see what
    Nikon's repair estimate will be, or you can try to sell it (as
    damaged goods) on eBay.

    I think that the warranty is a full year for all of Nikon's USA
    DSLRs and Lenses, except for the more reasonably priced non-Pro
    lenses, which provide extended coverage. Two examples of these are
    the 18-70mm DX lens and the 55-200mmVR lens. In addition to the
    regular 1 year warranty, they include a 4 year extension card in the
    box that should be sent back to Nikon very quickly. The boxes for
    these lenses are clearly marked on the outside with an image of a
    round seal, saying "5 years of protection included", and in smaller
    print "1 year warranty + 4 years extended service coverage" but
    unless the box is very close, all that you'll see is the large "5".
    ASAAR, Aug 30, 2007
  5. Alan Calan

    Frank Arthur Guest

    Hold out for future price drops.
    Wait for the D400 because it will probably have more pixels and
    and possibly even a lower selling price.
    Many Americans enjoy casinos and other gambling spots. You may as well
    look around for the really lowest price. I'm sure you will find some
    ad somewhere offering to sell for about half the price of Nikon's &
    lenses than the current going price. They might be a steal and save
    you hundreds.Or you might get suckered. Remember the three points of
    enjoying photography.

    Paying a fair price from a camera store with integrity like B&H and
    getting the security of a legitimate camera imported by Nikon USA and
    being protected if the camera don't work is a suckers game.
    Frank Arthur, Aug 30, 2007
  6. Alan Calan

    Bob Salomon Guest

    Possible, but unlikely. Although manufacturers have been known to sell the
    same product under different names or with different options in different
    regions of the world.[/QUOTE]

    Very possibly yes today. Cameras, and any other electronic product, sold
    in the EU since July 1 of this year must meet RoHS requirements as to
    the amount of certain chemicals in the product as well as the types of
    plastics used. Lead based solder is one banned substance.

    At this time RoHs does not apply to the US. So products sold in the US
    for US consumption can be made differently or contain different
    materials then product meant for countries in the EU.

    And then there are other difference like 220V 50Hz chargers rather then
    120V 60 Hz chargers, the chargers could just need a different AC cord or
    plug adapter or they may not be compatible.
    Warranty is the responsibilty of the distributor in each country. If the
    local distributor (Nikon USA) did not import it they don't have to honor
    the warranty if they don't want to. Nor do they have to repair it for a
    charge if they don't want to.

    You would have a warranty if you send the camera back to the distributor
    who imported it in the first place. Or with Nikon Japan if you sent it
    It is immediately obvious if the warranty card is not preaddressed to
    Nikon USA in NY or if the instruction book is not in English. Or if the
    camera is missing any of the items listed by Nikon USA as being part of
    the camera. Or by asking the seller if it is US or imported or gray.
    Bob Salomon, Aug 30, 2007
  7. Very possibly yes today. Cameras, and any other electronic product,
    sold in the EU since July 1 of this year must meet RoHS requirements
    as to the amount of certain chemicals in the product as well as the
    types of plastics used. Lead based solder is one banned substance.

    At this time RoHs does not apply to the US. So products sold in the US
    for US consumption can be made differently or contain different
    materials then product meant for countries in the EU.[/QUOTE]

    Certainly true, although many (most?) manufacturers would probably try to
    avoid the additional cost of running two different production lines or
    switching the line between two different versions of their products.
    Well, yeah :) Forgot about that.

    Jürgen Exner, Aug 30, 2007
  8. Please excuse my ignorance, but isn't that more like an insurance you are
    talking about now? Maybe I am totally wrong, but to me there are two kinds
    of warranty:
    1: the dealer is responsible that the goods he is selling are not defective
    2: the manufacturer is responsible that the goods he is producing are free
    of material or manufacturing defects
    Both kinds are legal requiremens and inherent in any contract of purchase,
    no matter if it's a 5 cent piece of chewing gum or a 50000$ car. I cannot
    even purchase something without having this coverage (special cases like
    used goods etc. excluded).

    Now, if I have to pay for warranty, then it is not a warranty any longer but
    becomes a normal insurance, doesn't it?

    Jürgen Exner, Aug 30, 2007
  9. I live in Europe, but I buy about 95% of my photographic equipment in
    the US (Why? - Well look at the prices in Europe! For some gear you
    can buy a return ticket to New York just for shopping, and still come
    out ahead ...) I have owned US-bought compacts from Olympus, Minolta,
    and Canon, and US-bought DSLR bodies from Kodak, Sigma, Canon and

    Without a single exception, all my stuff have come with a charger
    marked: "Input: 110-240V, 50-60 Hz". While voltage and frequency was
    a (minor) issue when using stateside bought equipment in the 1970ies,
    in this day and age all major manufactureres have standardized on a
    charger that works just as well in Europe as it does in the US.

    It is true that wall plugs are not compatible, but all the chargers I
    own have a detachable power cord using the same standard socket, so I
    just keep three power cords around: One for Europe, one for the UK,
    and one for the US (very convenient when you travel).
    Gisle Hannemyr, Aug 30, 2007
  10. Alan Calan

    ASAAR Guest

    It may be more like insurance, but it's sold as an extended
    warranty. There's at least a small bit of justification for it,
    since the way it operates is that when you buy, say, a 5 year
    extended warranty, you're not really buying 5 full years of
    coverage. You're only buying 5 years minus the length of the
    manufacturer's coverage. So with products that include a one year
    warranty, the 5 year extended warranty is only used to cover the
    product for years 2 through 5. It's also literally *called* an
    extended warranty, and anyone that tries to buy an insurance policy
    for their new camera is likely to get some odd stares.

    It does if that's the way you want to see it, but again, standard
    terminology is to call it an extended warranty. This isn't just
    done with cameras. Many computers, radios, TVs, and appliances are
    normally supplied with a one year warranty. The manufacturers don't
    say "Just ask and we'll give you a free two year extension on our
    warranty". Instead, they offer it for a fee. It would be a bit
    more logical to call these insurance policies, as you suggest, but
    that's not what they are called, at least here (USA). I suspect
    that part of the reason may be that if the extended warranties were
    called insurance policies, fewer would be sold.
    ASAAR, Aug 30, 2007
  11. Alan Calan

    Bob G Guest

    Jurgen is right.

    The manufacturer offers a warranty; that is, it tells you its product
    is perfect and if it isn't it will fix it for free during the warranty

    Mack, on the other hand, offers insurance (however it may wish to call
    it); that is, for a cash premium it will get your camera fixed.

    Insurance being what it is, a gamble, Mack bets that your camera won't
    need fixing and you bet that it will. Guess who wins most of the time.

    In my view, insurance is worth buying only when a possible loss would
    far exceed the buyer's assets. Buy house insurance, liability
    insurance, health insurance, etcetera.

    Camera insurance? You're wasting your money.
    Bob G, Aug 30, 2007
  12. The dealer is not responsible for manufacturer's defects. The dealer is
    not expected to examine every D200 (for example) that they sell
    The manufacturer actually passes off their responsibility to their
    "official importers" this is why Nikon Canada can refuse to service
    "grey market" cameras, even though Nikon Canada is a subsidiary of Nikon.
    Again the dealer IS NOT RESPONSIBLE, if Ford has a defective car, they
    have to support the dealer, with recalls etc.
    You are correct an extended warranty is insurance.
    Not Disclosed, Aug 30, 2007
  13. Alan Calan

    ASAAR Guest

    You may have read what I wrote, but I don't think that you've
    grasped it at all. As indicated above, I agreed in part with
    calling it insurance, but it's not as clear cut as you think.
    Nothing is free. You're paying for the manufacturer's "free"
    warranty. The cost is built into the total cost of the product.
    The manufacturer could have included a "free" two year warranty
    instead of only offering one year of coverage, but then they'd
    charge more for the product, and you'd have to pay for two years of
    coverage whether you wanted the additional year or not.

    Suppose an HP computer with a one year warranty costs $1000 and a
    one year warranty extension adds $75 to the cost. Also suppose that
    a similar HP computer is priced at $1075 and includes a "free" two
    year warranty. In both cases the warranty coverage is the same and
    the total price is the same. It seems unreasonable to say that the
    owner of the second computer has two years of warranty coverage, but
    the owner of the first computer only has one year of warranty
    coverage, but also has an additional year's worth of an insurance
    policy. They're both functionally the same coverage, and I prefer
    to not complicate matters by changing the terminology in midstream.

    Usually, but not always. If the cost is low enough, it may be
    worth considering. I got a 5 year extended warranty for my D50 for
    $40. You can call it an insurance policy if you wish and may even
    consider it to be a waste of money. But if you do, what do you
    think a fair price would be? Only a fool would be unwilling to
    extend the coverage to five years if the cost was only one dollar,
    so I assume that you might consider a "reasonable cost" to lie
    somewhere between $1 and $40.

    The same full coverage was available for about $75 from Circuit
    City, but the coverage was for fewer years. That, I'd consider to
    be a waste of money.
    ASAAR, Aug 30, 2007
  14. Alan Calan

    Frank Arthur Guest

    You've got a Nikon D200 that is 366 days old, just over the one year
    warranty and the electronics simply do not function.
    Without insurance- what do you think it would cost to repair if it was
    sent to Nikon to be repaired?

    Wasting your money?
    Frank Arthur, Aug 30, 2007
  15. Alan Calan

    Bob G Guest

    Camera insurance? You're wasting your money.
    That sounds like a bargain, $8 a year. I've never had a Mack warranty.
    What does it cover? Everything?
    Bob G, Aug 30, 2007
  16. Well, of course I wouldn't expect him to examine and try each and every
    piece of chewing gum he sells himself :))
    But it is the dealer who is the other party in the sales contract. I am
    offering and giving my money for a product that is free of defects. If the
    product does have a defect then the dealer did not fullfill his part of the
    Of course in turn the dealer will hold himself harmless against the
    manufacturer, but that is his problem. I have no dealings with the
    manufacturer at the time of purchase. Very often as a consumer I don't even
    know who that is, probably some sweatshop in Asia.

    Jürgen Exner, Aug 30, 2007
  17. Alan Calan

    ASAAR Guest

    That's what it says. Hope I don't have to find how accurate that
    is. :) I was a bit suspicious at first about the trustworthiness
    of warranty companies, since reading about one of them going out of
    business several years ago. But Mack has been around for decades,
    and I don't think that they'd be available from both B&H and Adorama
    if Mack was a shady or fly-by-night company. The coverage is
    slightly less of a bargain, since covering years 2 through 5 makes
    it $10/year, but it still puts it in my "chump change" category.

    The way they're sold is as generic warranties. Not priced based
    on the brand or model, just on the price of the camera. So the $40
    5 year warranty covers cameras sold for up to $500. Less expensive
    5 year warranties might only cover cameras sold for $350 or less.
    ASAAR, Aug 30, 2007
  18. Well I can state with Nikon Canada, if the camera is DOA the store MUST
    SEND THE CAMERA TO NIKON CANADA for warranty. They won't get reimbursed
    if they swap the bad camera over the counter. So effectively the dealer
    is out of pocket. So sad too bad is Nikon Canada's policy.
    Not Disclosed, Aug 30, 2007
  19. Alan Calan

    RichA Guest

    Abe's of "Maine."

    Abes of Maine
    Raritan Center
    5 Fernwood Ave
    Edison, NJ 08837
    RichA, Aug 30, 2007
  20. Alan Calan

    Roger Guest

    I would like to add to the above, the fact that in Norway the Consumer
    rights are a bit different than in other parts of Europe, and also the rest
    of the Nordics. In Norway the consumer laws gives the consumer a 5 year
    right to return a product for service or exchange and the manufacturer has
    to prove that the fault is not depending on any original production faults.
    This has to be proven in each individual case, and basically means that, if
    push comes to shove all faults in electronics are covered by a 5 year legal

    In Sweden and Denmark the legal warranty period is 3 years from date of
    purchase, but the burden of proof is reversed, and it is the customer who
    has to prove an original fault.

    Finally, in Finland there are actually no time limit in when a product can
    be serviced or exchanged under the legal warranty. Cameras and other
    consumer electronics are viewed as products that should be functional under
    a long timeframe, and at any time a customer can claim this and it is then
    the serviceshop, manufacturer or dealer who has to prove that the fault is
    dependant on the customers way of miss-treating the product.

    This of course mean that a manufacturer and/or dealer has to calculate the
    price of the products with the above in mind. Hence, yes, there are

    Since the burden of proof lies on the manufacturer in these cases this also
    means that, for instance, the use of non-original ink in printers that have
    caused a faulty printhead is basically covered by warranty, since the cost
    of sending each individual print head to a lab for forensic would be much
    higher than just change the print head at the manufacturers expense.

    Roger, Aug 30, 2007
    1. Advertisements

Ask a Question

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

You'll need to choose a username for the site, which only take a couple of moments (here). After that, you can post your question and our members will help you out.