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Thread: Buying lenses from USA.

  1. #1

    Default Buying lenses from USA.

    Hi all. Any of you have experience buying lenses from USA online or by getting friends to bring back? I'm just asking this because of one line I saw here (bhphotovideo) . They are a reputable camera store in New York.

    A "USA" warrantied item is a manufacture's warranty that would be repaired in any manufacturer's authorized service facility worldwide if the item required in-warranty service.

    Does this statement means the warrenty which Canon USA issues is an international warrenty? Meaning if I buy a lens from USA, I can get it repaired in Singapore if any manufacturers defects are present? I know the warrenty with the Singapore lenses arn't international right?

    Comparing the price on 2 Canon lenses to see why this may be a viable option:

    USA -->Canon 100mm Macro EF f2.8 US$420 (SG$714).
    Singapore -->Canon 100mm Macro EF f2.8 SG$1000.

    USA -->Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM US$400 (SG$680).
    Singapore -->Canon EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM SG$900.

    Compare the differences? Quite a bit isn't it? The Canon lenses in Singapore tend to have their price 'marked up'. The Sigma lenses in US and Singapore after currency conversion cost around the same.

    Anyone have any idea about the warrenty validity?

  2. #2
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    B&H have both International warrantied and grey market lenses. International warranty is not unheard of, and if you really want to be doubly sure (I think the website is explicit enough), you can always email them to confirm if the warranty will apply in Singapore.

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    After adding shipping and insurance, the advantage will be quite a bit less. Unless you get your friend to bring it in. My experience so far is that there will usually be some hassle, from minor to a big mess.
    You'll also need to coordinate between your friend and the merchant.
    As far as possible try to allow ample time for the shipping, tight schedules tend to cause the most worry and panic. And as far as possible use a reliable merchant.

    That being said, it is a good way to get difficult/expensive items.

    As for warranty I guess it depends on brand, but I remember seeing
    donno which warranty that says it is valid everywhere except in US & Canada

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by frisky
    After adding shipping and insurance, the advantage will be quite a bit less. Unless you get your friend to bring it in. My experience so far is that there will usually be some hassle, from minor to a big mess.
    You'll also need to coordinate between your friend and the merchant.
    As far as possible try to allow ample time for the shipping, tight schedules tend to cause the most worry and panic. And as far as possible use a reliable merchant.

    That being said, it is a good way to get difficult/expensive items.

    As for warranty I guess it depends on brand, but I remember seeing
    donno which warranty that says it is valid everywhere except in US & Canada
    I've got a few friends staying in New York, and reuptable retailers such a bhphotovideo or adorama are based in NYC. So getting friends to being back lenses isn't a problem. But best way would to be buying when on holiday there.

    Awaiting reply from bhphotovideo regarding the warrenty. Could open up new options for considerably cheaper lens purchase.

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    You'll also need to add in their sales tax. In NY it was 8.5% the last time I bought things from there. Please read the small print on the advertisement and also check whether this tax is applicable for mail order from outside US.

  6. #6

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    in US, tax is only applicable to the state/city you are in. Therefore, it is always advantageous to ship the goods out of state from where the business has a presence. for example, if buying from BHphotovideo and ship the good outside NY, you do not have to pay NY tax. That is why many people go BHphotovideo to buy the lenses but do not bring it home, instead ship it back home because if the lenses are expensive, the taxes are way higher than the shipping.

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    Huh? I though they charge tax for anywhere in US.......

    Ok, Mr Jason, time to ask your friends to move out of New York.......

  8. #8

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    Jason, bhphotovideo or adorama is a good choice, don't buy from any other small shops that give you cheaper price or claim that they have international warranty. B&H does not sell grey market equipment, they only have U.S. warranty. There is no N.Y tax if shipped outside of the state. But you might be taxed in Singapore customs. I bought from these 2 companys before, got no problems with them. After sales service is good too.

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    Quote Originally Posted by George
    Jason, bhphotovideo or adorama is a good choice, don't buy from any other small shops that give you cheaper price or claim that they have international warranty. B&H does not sell grey market equipment, they only have U.S. warranty. There is no N.Y tax if shipped outside of the state. But you might be taxed in Singapore customs. I bought from these 2 companys before, got no problems with them. After sales service is good too.
    B&H do sell grey market (direct import) equipment. You might want to take a closer look at their website.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by George
    Jason, bhphotovideo or adorama is a good choice, don't buy from any other small shops that give you cheaper price or claim that they have international warranty. B&H does not sell grey market equipment, they only have U.S. warranty. There is no N.Y tax if shipped outside of the state. But you might be taxed in Singapore customs. I bought from these 2 companys before, got no problems with them. After sales service is good too.
    For many items, B&H does sell 2 versions: 1 with US warranty, and 1 labelled as "imported" with warranty provided by B&H themselves.

    Not sure if the second category is called grey market items, they are usually a fraction less expensive than the US warranty ones, but I guess they will still be better than some really grey market items that are shipped with missing accessories and photocopied user manuals.

    If you buy online from outside the state where the business is located, you do not have to pay sales tax.
    As complexity rises, precise statements lose meaning and meaningful statements lose precision.

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by roygoh
    For many items, B&H does sell 2 versions: 1 with US warranty, and 1 labelled as "imported" with warranty provided by B&H themselves.

    Not sure if the second category is called grey market items, they are usually a fraction less expensive than the US warranty ones,
    Yes, imported means gray, or parallel imports. Same thing.

    Gray market items may or may not be guaranteed by the manufacturer.

    USA warranty is good world wide, at any service center. The issue is really which market the goods was targetted at. If you buy a product in the market that it was target at ( in this case, USA, and hence, comes with US warranty ), you can get it serviced worldwide. If you buy a product that was NOT meant for that market ( hence, gray market, at a lower price ), then the manufacturer is not obliged to service it, since you didn't "pay" for the correct item. In this case, you have to return the item to B&H for servicing, costing you a bomb in postage.

    That said, I understand that Canon used to ( not sure if they still do ) service gray market products as well, as long as you have the proper receipts. BUt you should probably call the companies up and double check.

    Unless you are saving big bucks, I suggest getting the US Warranty items. Saves potential problems.

  12. #12

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    i bought a few lenses from BH photo. The idea it the US guaranteed lenses, its covered by the manufacturer in that country only (US) and its not international warranty. I doubt that lenses are covered by international warranty. The direct import (also known as gray market) ones are covered by B&H. So anything wrong with the direct import ones, you can get it fixed by B&H.

    B&H is a very reputable shop, so far, all the stuff i ordered arrived in perfect condition, so no worries about that
    Last edited by darrelchia; 26th August 2003 at 11:57 PM.

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    A "USA" warrantied item is a manufacture's warranty that would be repaired in any manufacturer's authorized service facility worldwide if the item required in-warranty service. The "direct import" item would have to be returned to B&H Photo-Video Corp. in New York City if it required in-warranty attention. A resident of the USA may wish to make the buying decision based on price, since the cost of shipping to an American service center or to us should be about equal. A non-USA resident may want to consider the cost of returning the "direct import" item to us for warranty service, compared to the expense of buying the "USA warrantied" item and having warranty service available locally.
    I really wonder how many of you actually read the B&H link in the very first post...............

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