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Thread: Comment on the aftersales service at Cathay Photo

  1. #1

    Default Comment on the aftersales service at Cathay Photo

    Hi all, allow me to vent my frust... I hope to get some feedbacks too.

    Last month, I bought a Manfrotto boom package (stand+boom) from Cathay Photo and encounter failure on the first use. I was surprised by the failure as Manfrotto has always produced good quality products. Here's a pix.


    On 17 Jul (within 7 days), I brought it back to Cathay for RMA. I was told that there's not spare replacement in stock; and they cannot take 'salvage' sales unit because that package cannot be sold afterwards. What the hell was "within 7 days can come back to us" statement??? So, left with no other options I had to wait one month for the replacement to arrive in the next shipment.

    Fast forward one month, I called and was told the italians are still having the summer holidays from Aug - Sept. He was very sorry about the situation but was not able to do anything else. I cannot get a definite date. And was told to wait, he will expedite the case.

    Am I the special case here or is the aftersales service level poor at Cathay Photo? I am annoyed because this is a case of open box failure and I cannot get to use the equipment at all!!!

    Had it been a Canon or Nikon camera, I would have gotten a one-to-one replacement. But my point is that Cathay Photo, being the sole agent for Manfrotto in Singapore, should take a interest in their product line, rather than shifting responsibility back the manufacturer.

    Yes, there are nice folks at Cathay Photo - but what's the use if that is only before the transaction? At the moment, I having a sour aftertasting buying from them.

    After this event, I stopped buying things from Cathay Photo. Actually looking at the prices online, it will make no big difference if I buy from bhphoto online. Sometimes, buying online is even cheaper and more options.

    P/S: I'm really pleased with my good fortune for having bought Profoto instead of Elinchrome More about that the next time.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Comment on the aftersales service at Cathay Photo

    Relax man. They got no stock to replace and what else can they do but wait. I suggest you wait too. Patience pays in the end.

    PS: If you are thinking of buying from BHPhotoVideo, don't forget to include 7% GST if your items are worth more than S$400.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Comment on the aftersales service at Cathay Photo

    Quote Originally Posted by hazmee View Post
    Relax man. They got no stock to replace and what else can they do but wait. I suggest you wait too. Patience pays in the end.

    PS: If you are thinking of buying from BHPhotoVideo, don't forget to include 7% GST if your items are worth more than S$400.
    More often than not, CathayPhoto Price = Online Price + Shipping + GST

    It's a math that the pricing department was setup to do. Especially true for products that they are "sole agent".

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    Default Re: Comment on the aftersales service at Cathay Photo

    Quote Originally Posted by coffee3in1 View Post
    More often than not, CathayPhoto Price = Online Price + Shipping + GST

    It's a math that the pricing department was setup to do. Especially true for products that they are "sole agent".
    So much for being sole agents... bleargh!

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Comment on the aftersales service at Cathay Photo

    Its true that Italians have a very long summer holidays in August, when almost the whole country shut down for vacations, very frustrating when u need something urgent in August.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Comment on the aftersales service at Cathay Photo

    Sometime, it's better to buy from 'smaller' shops as they are their own towkays. Vested interested to keep customers happy. Richard of TK Foto is one such guy - he don't pressure-sell and his prices are straight like a ruler. His ThinkTank products warranty - no problem, just change strap one-to-one from sales unit. No stupid comment like "Oh, like that ah? I need to send back to US for exchange."

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    Senior Member phoakm's Avatar
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    Default Re: Comment on the aftersales service at Cathay Photo

    Quote Originally Posted by coffee3in1 View Post
    More often than not, CathayPhoto Price = Online Price + Shipping + GST

    It's a math that the pricing department was setup to do. Especially true for products that they are "sole agent".
    True....with the price from overseas, can save hundreds of $$$$, but there are certain risks and services you need to take. .... Moreover can order "UNIQUE" items from overseas.
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    Senior Member phoakm's Avatar
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    Default Re: Comment on the aftersales service at Cathay Photo

    Quote Originally Posted by coffee3in1 View Post
    Sometime, it's better to buy from 'smaller' shops as they are their own towkays. Vested interested to keep customers happy. Richard of TK Foto is one such guy - he don't pressure-sell and his prices are straight like a ruler. His ThinkTank products warranty - no problem, just change strap one-to-one from sales unit. No stupid comment like "Oh, like that ah? I need to send back to US for exchange."
    Agreed.
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  9. #9

    Default Re: Comment on the aftersales service at Cathay Photo

    Quote Originally Posted by phoakm View Post
    True....with the price from overseas, can save hundreds of $$$$, but there are certain risks and services you need to take. .... Moreover can order "UNIQUE" items from overseas.
    BH Photo site sells Photoflex Main & T-Clamp for Litepanel Frame/Panel Reflectors for US$24.95. Make a wild guess how much Cathay Photo charges; then call up and ask for a quote. I think you'll fall off the chair.

  10. #10
    Senior Member phoakm's Avatar
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    Default Re: Comment on the aftersales service at Cathay Photo

    Quote Originally Posted by coffee3in1 View Post
    BH Photo site sells Photoflex Main & T-Clamp for Litepanel Frame/Panel Reflectors for US$24.95. Make a wild guess how much Cathay Photo charges; then call up and ask for a quote. I think you'll fall off the chair.
    No need to ask .... tried it, broke the leg of my chair.
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    Default Re: Comment on the aftersales service at Cathay Photo

    You are not alone man. I always like to knock myself silly every now and then by asking them how much the Lee Filters cost. And as always, no stock. Pfft.

  12. #12

    Default Re: Comment on the aftersales service at Cathay Photo

    Quote Originally Posted by hazmee View Post
    You are not alone man. I always like to knock myself silly every now and then by asking them how much the Lee Filters cost. And as always, no stock. Pfft.
    Wat to do? Truth be told, there's ain't that many a camera-shops that carry the range they do. AND THEY KNOW IT. So consumers be warned. Buy n pray hard that ur items don't need service from them loh.

    I won't touch Elinchrome with a 10 foot pole.

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    Default Re: Comment on the aftersales service at Cathay Photo

    Quote Originally Posted by coffee3in1 View Post
    Wat to do? Truth be told, there's ain't that many a camera-shops that carry the range they do. AND THEY KNOW IT. So consumers be warned. Buy n pray hard that ur items don't need service from them loh.

    I won't touch Elinchrome with a 10 foot pole.
    good business attitude on their part...like you said because they monopolize the local distribution here they can just make the customers lan lan suck thumb even if they provide bad service. support what you said about by passing them and just buying online.
    Opinions are like A-holes. Everyone's got one.

  14. #14

    Default Re: Comment on the aftersales service at Cathay Photo

    Quote Originally Posted by coffee3in1 View Post
    I won't touch Elinchrome with a 10 foot pole.
    which, by the way, is what the boom arm is good for.. since the swivel is still 1 month(hopefully) away from arrival.

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    Senior Member Cheesecake's Avatar
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    Default Re: Comment on the aftersales service at Cathay Photo

    Quote Originally Posted by coffee3in1 View Post
    Wat to do? Truth be told, there's ain't that many a camera-shops that carry the range they do. AND THEY KNOW IT. So consumers be warned. Buy n pray hard that ur items don't need service from them loh.

    I won't touch Elinchrome with a 10 foot pole.
    i pretty much like elinchrome lights.



    lights are jus lights, its how u use them that counts.
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  16. #16

    Default Re: Comment on the aftersales service at Cathay Photo

    Quote Originally Posted by Cheesecake View Post
    i pretty much like elinchrome lights.

    lights are jus lights, its how u use them that counts.
    Yeah, u're right. But why should I give CP a chance to screw me again? Elinchrome is serviced by them in Singapore.

    Buy Jinbei, Buy Profoto; I oso got more confidence.
    - Shriro Singapore got a very formidable service center (Profoto) in Singapore.
    - Kenneth, whom I met twice, is an absolute champ to buy Jinbei from.

  17. #17
    Senior Member Cheesecake's Avatar
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    Default Re: Comment on the aftersales service at Cathay Photo

    Quote Originally Posted by coffee3in1 View Post
    Yeah, u're right. But why should I give CP a chance to screw me again? Elinchrome is serviced by them in Singapore.

    Buy Jinbei, Buy Profoto; I oso got more confidence.
    - Shriro Singapore got a very formidable service center (Profoto) in Singapore.
    - Kenneth, whom I met twice, is an absolute champ to buy Jinbei from.
    i can't afford elinchrome but i used them before.

    i use some lights made in China.


    as i've never used nor require any after-sales service from CP, i can't comment.

    hopefully CP can resolve ur issue ASAP.
    You'll Never Walk Alone! - i have the best job in the world!

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    Default Re: Comment on the aftersales service at Cathay Photo

    let me see

    CP got no stocks to RMA for you
    CP apologised
    CP give you reason on why they cannot proceed with your request until later

    what do you want from them some more?
    it is not like they don't want to RMA for you.

    lets hope the Italians get back to work early and send more stocks

  19. #19

    Default Re: Comment on the aftersales service at Cathay Photo

    My case is a open box failure, and I return within 7 days. I paid $500 to wait for 2 months (maybe longer) so that I can use it for the first time. So much for aftersales service and support. No logic rite?

    If I return 6 months after purchase, then no choice. Gotta wait.

    I was so tempted to void the visa transaction; credit card users are protected against a 60-day warranty. At least I kept my cool. Heh..

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Comment on the aftersales service at Cathay Photo

    either u really unlucky they got no new set to replace (in-store, or warehouse) or they rather make u wait for next re-order while a working set is sold to another buyer? its possible.

    try asking in detail to confirm again?

    edit: no way am i going to take a tall story & walk off. wad summer holiday story? big store, small store, all pro profit 1st, customer satisfaction 2nd (majority). i say void the transaction if u can. if oni they sell that item den by all means buy next time. & from this unpleasant experience, check before paying or leaving the store. save the hassle of bringing a bulky item to & fro...
    Last edited by sORe-EyEz; 20th August 2008 at 11:39 PM.

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