Jessops and things
Sadly I find that Jessops are not alone in this move away from analogue products. About 18 months ago I needed some fixer in a hurry so I went into town and not on of the three camera shops had any. I have not been back since and have no plans to as I always use mail order.
On the subject of mail order I also highly recommend 7dayshop. I have used them for some time and although the delivery is sometimes a little slow I have no other complaints. Also if you need fast service I find firstcall-photographic very useful but there prices do tend to be a little higher.
With regard to AP, I hope they continue to publish Roger's wisdom. I don't read the mag myself but prefer Black and White Photography where I sometimes get the benefit of Roger's wife's wisdom. If you do need more Roger try buying his books - I bought his book on lighting and it is worth every penny.
Further to the whole issue of giving the what they need, I recently bin my subscription to Practical Photography because they only seem to be interested in helping CaNikon sell more high tech portable computer imaging devices and giving free promotion to Adobe. All I have to do now is decide what toys I am going to buy with the money I have saved by not buying a high end printer, DSLR, extra-wide angle lens, Photoshop and PP.
Originally Posted by midlife crisis
Thanks for the kind words; Frances also thanks you. And if I can put in a plug: don't forget www.rogerandfrances.com. There's a small amount of digi there, not least because we have to use it in order to keep writing for the magazines, though I have to say that the M8 is actually a dicicam I enjoy using. But it's mostly either halide (which I've been doing for over 4 decades) or 'platform free' such as the latest module (up yesterday) on sharpness.
The trouble with Jessops 'going to hell' is that they will have taken so many other people with them.
Originally Posted by Richard Kelham
A few years ago they where buying up every photographic shop in the highstreets, then 'Rationalising' (closing them down ) and just leaving a couple of Jessops branches per town.
For example, Wolverhampton had something like six photographic shops, a couple of really good well stocked ones, and one Jessops.
Jessops bought out three, I think. One closed of its own accord and one relocated in an industrial estate and went 'pro' only.
Now there are just two shops, both branches of Jessops.
A similar pattern exists in most town, there are very few independant shops left, certainly in the smaller towns. Jessops just swallowed them all up.
So if they go under - Jessops will have virtually eradicated photography from the high street shops altogether...
Jessops have tried to sell me film 2 years out of date!!
Originally Posted by Ian Grant
Trying to get service there is very hard too since staff will dump you in favour of a customer after a new digicam or dslr since they get a fat commission. Asking for 120 also totally confuses their staff.
I only got to Jessops was an absolute last resort when I *need* to get hold of film asap. I use mailshots.co.uk who are often cheaper than 7dayshop and dispatch first class the same day. 7dayshop takes ages.
Originally Posted by m_liddell
Hence the name, perhaps?
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Jessops is more of a chain of shops for electronic goods these days than a photographic chain. But trying to compete with Currys/PC World, Comet, Argos and all the online retailers probably means they are on a hiding to nothing. They will probably get taken over or disappear in the next year or two.
They've changed a lot since they were a small family run shop in Leicester selling photographic gear at low prices. In those days there were often so many customers in the shop that it was difficult to get inside. Personally I haven't bothered with them for years and everything said in this thread re-inforces that. They only have one shop where I live but amazingly there are still half a dozen or so real photographic shops. But I have no idea if these still stock chemistry.
7dayshop works. I bought all my Canon 'new' lens there, before they stopped. Now it's mostly film and gizmos (they have cheap reflectors, light tents etc!); oh and they have the cheapest 120 E6 processing you can find anywhere (dlab7.com); the quality is excellent, but you have to wait a week.. /don't/ try their scanner tho. huh.
Local jessops tried to sell me an opened box of Ilford paper for the full price. They had some DDX left tho, so I bought it, at a full £3 less than the current Ilford price
There is another 'chain' that I rather like. the 'photo optix' one. the one in Windsor are mostly knowledgeable and friendly, even if they only have digicams anymore.
I think photo shops will soon realize than customers don't come back. See my wife for example:
+ Bought her digicam 3 years ago
+ Bought a spare memory card & battery (from 7days )
+ Doesn't print any image. ever.
(Well now she uses a Canonet for her 'serious' photos but still )
So, before the digicam she bought film, and made prints. Now she is completely /lost/ for the photography market until her camera breaks down.
When the digi market reaches saturation, there will be nobody left to buy anything. Poeple don't print their images, they email/flickr them.
That day a whole chunk of the retail market is going to crahs down. Jessops leading the way.
I visited Derby last week. They have a branch of Jacobs. Jacobs was never as big as Jessops, but in some towns was a viable alternative in the good old days (of film!). They are still hanging in there, but have also undergone a metamorphosis into a digi-cam outlet. However, both the Derby shop and the B'ham shop, although they are very similar to Jessops in size and concentration on digital, do still have a full range of chemicals, paper and film stuck up one corner.
So, if they can do it...
I really think Jessops' postion is deliberately anti film based photography.
Unless, as someone has said earlier, they are struggling. It wouldn't suprise me if they aren't 'rationilsed' themselves, at some point. I'm sure we could really do with a few more branches of Currys