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Thread: KEH ratings!

  1. #21

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    I read everyone's praising of KEH's service and their "conservative" ratings. However, my experience with them is mixed. I would say their customer service is top notch, and their generous return policy and 6-month warranty really puts customers' minds in peace.

    I can say so because I have went through all of them. In the past year I bought 2 cameras and 1 lens from them, and in all 3 transactions I needed to return or get the item repaired. The most recent is a bargain-grade camera body first released 30 years ago. But it's really in bargain grade: body smells strangely, the outer shell covering (some kind of plastic) is whitened. I thought as long as it works it should be fine. But the film advance lever gave out at the end of the very first roll. So I have no choice but to return it.

    The lens I bought is in excellent grade. I got it at a very good price because it has an engraving. That's fine. But there is some linkage problem so the camera cannot read the correct aperture (a well-known issue in Contax SRL system). I returned it for repair. Two weeks passed by they couldn't fix it. So I decided to live with the problem asked them to send the lens back. At the last month of the 6-month warranty period the lens aperture stopped closing down. So I sent it back for repair and thought I was lucky that the problem showed up before the end of the warranty. Maybe because of the earlier issue, they fixed it in two days and I got the lens back in a week.

    The first camera body I bought from them went through 3 iterations. In the first one I must admit I was too picky. The second body was faulty. The 3rd time was a charm. The body was in EX grade, though.

  2. #22

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    The plastic-bodied SLRs from the 1980s and 1990s are "dime a dozen," so to speak. They are viewed as mass produced cameras and quickly replaceable and don't carry the same perceived value as the so-called classics.

    You'll know why you paid so little when you try to sell one. And I'm sure KEH is swimming in these models, which is why they unload them so cheaply.

  3. #23
    Christopher Walrath's Avatar
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    What amazes me with KEH is not what they charge for their stock, but rather what they pay you for your gear. I have quoted more than a little bit over the years and I realize that they have overhead and need to profit and the electronics devalue over time. Hence their ow offerings by and large.

    But how can so many people be so desperate to move a camera that they just fire it off for so little in return.
    Thank you.
    -CW

    "Wubba, wubba, wubba. Bing, bang, bong. Yuck, yuck, yuck and a fiddle-dee-dee." - The Yeti

  4. #24
    MattKing's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Christopher Walrath View Post
    What amazes me with KEH is not what they charge for their stock, but rather what they pay you for your gear. I have quoted more than a little bit over the years and I realize that they have overhead and need to profit and the electronics devalue over time. Hence their ow offerings by and large.

    But how can so many people be so desperate to move a camera that they just fire it off for so little in return.
    Estates and (in the past) stores who cease selling used inventories.
    Matt

    “Photography is a complex and fluid medium, and its many factors are not applied in simple sequence. Rather, the process may be likened to the art of the juggler in keeping many balls in the air at one time!”

    Ansel Adams, from the introduction to The Negative - The New Ansel Adams Photography Series / Book 2

  5. #25
    AgX
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    Quote Originally Posted by philosli View Post
    ..., and their generous return policy and 6-month warranty really puts customers' minds in peace.
    This policy does not apply for overseas sales.

  6. #26

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    Quote Originally Posted by hoffy View Post
    Timely thread for me. I am looking at my first purchase from KEH. I want to buy a late model Minolta electronic flash. Considering it will be sent to Australia, would it be fair to stick with EX or EX+? I don't want the hassle of a return.

    Cheers.
    The ratings seem mostly cosmetic. I don't think they do a lot of functional testing. So I'd buy BGN, I think the odds of getting a dud would be about the same. Price difference on a flash between BGN and EX shouldn't be that much. I definitely would buy EX instead of EX+, though.

  7. #27
    RalphLambrecht's Avatar
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    me too.from one conversation with KEH, I UNDERSTAND that all heir ratings are purely based on cosmeticsand the equipment is not tested for functionality.that's fine with me as I think cosmetics is a good sign of how the equipment was cared for in the past.
    Regards

    Ralph W. Lambrecht
    www.darkroomagic.comrorrlambrec@ymail.com[/URL]
    www.waybeyondmonochrome.com

  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by L Gebhardt View Post
    I used to buy EX and EX+ only, but took a chance on an F3 in BGN condition. When it arrived I thought it was in excellent condition, but after playing with it for 30 minutes I found the prism was dented on one side. It's cosmetic only as the prism works fine. There's also one minor dent above the film counter, which doesn't seem to cause any issues. So it really is a bargain. I save about 1/3 of the cost to get a fully functional camera with some minor cosmetic issues. Not a bad deal. Next I'll try a BGN lens and see how happy I am with it.

    As far as 35mm lenses go I haven't been too fond of the 35mm f/2 AFD, so I'm hesitant to try the MF version (which is reported to be not as good as the AFD). I've used the 35mm f/1.4 Rokinon and found it to be an excellent lens. It's got a pleasant rendering, and it's sharper at f/1.4 than the AFD is at f/2, and by f/5.6 it's sharper than the AFD ever gets. I've got it for sale because I could use the money, but I'm half tempted to keep it.

    For the 50mm I have an old f/1.4 that was converted to AI. It works well. Not the sharpest lens wide open, but I really like its image qualities. The 50mm f/1.8 Series E lenses are real bargains, and once stopped down to f/2.8 equal the faster f/1.4 lens. Non of these older lenses are as sharp as the newer G lenses, but those won't work on your camera.
    You'll be pleasantly surprised with the manual 35/2 lenses. They're better than the AF-D version. Pretty much any of them from the original Nikkor-O through the AIS version will beat the AF and AF-D versions.

    Re: where KEH's inventory comes from, there are estate sales, shops that have given up on used inventory, private sellers, and they also have buyers who hit local camera shops every 60 days to purchase inventory that has been sitting around but that is of interest to their buyers. With the local shops here in the Seattle area, you can usually tell when Justin from KEH has come through. The Nikon and Canon cases have about 1/3 the inventory of what they had earlier.

    -J
    APUG: F2AS x2, F, FM2n, Nikomat FTn
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    Nikkors: 18-70/3.5-4.5G AF-S DX (f/D200), 20/3.5 UD, 24/2.8 AI, 50/2 AI, 50/1.4 AI, 50/1.4 S, 55/2.8 Micro AIS, 85/1.8 K

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  9. #29
    RalphLambrecht's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by John_Nikon_F View Post
    You'll be pleasantly surprised with the manual 35/2 lenses. They're better than the AF-D version. Pretty much any of them from the original Nikkor-O through the AIS version will beat the AF and AF-D versions.

    -J
    that's nt my experience. my 24,35,50AFDs are just as god as their AIS siblings frm what I can tell.
    Regards

    Ralph W. Lambrecht
    www.darkroomagic.comrorrlambrec@ymail.com[/URL]
    www.waybeyondmonochrome.com

  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by RalphLambrecht View Post
    that's nt my experience. my 24,35,50AFDs are just as god as their AIS siblings frm what I can tell.
    The 24 and 50 I'd expect to have them perform the same as the AIS versions, since they are basically the same lenses. The 35, however, is a different design optically, having six elements in five groups, instead of eight elements in six groups. Center sharpness is fine, but the edges suffer some loss on the 35/2 AF (and AF-D).

    -J
    APUG: F2AS x2, F, FM2n, Nikomat FTn
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