Buy a PL15mm f1.7 on eBay from Japan or from N. America?

Discussion in 'This or That?' started by xxjorelxx, Jan 13, 2015.

  1. xxjorelxx

    xxjorelxx Mu-43 Veteran

    Dec 11, 2012
    MD, USA
    Real Name:
    Hi guys,
    I've been away from the forums for about a year or so and just recently started signing back on so i'm a little out of practice in forum etiquette. I'll have to apologize now if my question has been asked many times before but I tried doing a quick search and just couldn't find much information about it. I currently own a P14mm f2.5 that I love using for landscapes and tight indoor shots but I just recently found out about the PL15mm f1.7 lens i'm seriously considering selling my P14mm and buying the PL15mm instead. I'm seeing that they go for around $550-$600 on U.S. retail sites but when I search eBay, I've seen some listed for as low as $469... only issue is the lens is coming from Japan. Is there anything I need to worry about if I buy a lens from Japan compared to N. America. I understand I might get tagged for customs fees but are there any compatibility issues or the like? Thanks in advance for any input.
  2. Canonista

    Canonista Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Sep 3, 2011
    Unlike camera bodies, the lenses are the same regardless of whether you bought from Japan or in North America, except that you won't get a U.S. warranty on items you personally import from Japan. I've not yet had to make warranty claims, so I'm not sure how well the Japanese dealers would handle them, so you'll want to select a dealer with long record of strong customer feedback. I have no reason to doubt that the Japanese dealer will make good on any warranty claims, but my rule of thumb is to buy locally if the price differential is less than a $100, since you can easily end up paying that much or more if you have the product repaired in the U.S. without a warranty.

    I've previously bought lenses from reputable dealers in Japan, and have had no problems with delivery. Packaging has been good, and delivery very fast (within a week). As far as customs duties, I've found that if the seller ships via EMS (Express Mail Service) aka Postal Service, you won't get tagged on import duties. I've bought lenses, watches, car models worth thousands of dollars, and never paid duties. On the other hand, I once imported aftermarket parts for my car via Federal Express, and later received a bill for duties from FedEx. So pay attention to shipping method.