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Confidence when buying used gear

Discussion in 'Open Discussion' started by demiro, Apr 16, 2015.

  1. demiro

    demiro Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Nov 7, 2010
    Lately it seems like I am seeing (or noticing) more gear for sale that sets off my Spidey Sense. Camera with battery only, no box, accessories, charger, etc., for example. Selling at a nice margin below typical. It just screams "stolen" to me. Could be the seller stole it, or, more likely, they bought it on craigslist or from a pawnshop or eBay and didn't ask too many questions. Could also be an innocent explanation, but that is less interesting.

    I'm going to start asking more questions regarding history of ownership when I am considering a purchase. Not foolproof, but might lead to some level of assuredness that purchase is safe, or not.

    I'm curious what others do when they see ads like that? Just figure "great deal", or wonder why it is such a great deal?

    Please note, I am not talking about any ad on mu-43. I've seen this on a few other sites lately.
     
  2. agentlossing

    agentlossing Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jun 26, 2013
    Andrew Lossing
    Some people just don't keep a lot of that stuff, my EM10 used from this site only came with the charger and an extra battery... I'd say the inclusion of a charger makes it a lot more legitimate. Who sells a camera but keeps the charger?
     
  3. davidzvi

    davidzvi Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 12, 2012
    Outside Boston MA
    David
    There seems to be a lot more kit / package deal separation these days. And a LOT from overseas where more options/combinations are available at what seem like lower prices. I never really noticed it in the Nikon world, there it's more gray market UN-official importers. But, at least lately, I've noticed a lot in m4/3. No idea about Canon or other mirrorless.
     
  4. demiro

    demiro Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Nov 7, 2010
    Having the charger and battery but none of the other stuff isn't a big deal to me, but lacking the charger is a warning sign.
     
  5. demiro

    demiro Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Nov 7, 2010
    I agree. And I don't have an issue with that. I've had a few transactions with sellers from Asia on eBay. High marks all the way around.
     
  6. InlawBiker

    InlawBiker Mu-43 Veteran

    218
    Feb 1, 2012
    Seattle, WA
    Greg
    I have personally lost many chargers and bought 3rd party versions on ebay to replace the OEM, and I almost never save boxes or manuals. But you are right to suspect something. So I go by site reputation, either feedback or ebay rating which to me is the most important thing.
     
  7. Jfrader

    Jfrader Guest

    That is among the reasons I never buy used from any of the "list" or auction sites. I'll buy used from KEH or B&H but never from non-photo or private sellers. I know the stuff from KEH has been vetted, inspected and cleaned by professionals and the listings tell me what accessories are included. Better to pay a bit more for quality work and peace of mind.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  8. demiro

    demiro Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Nov 7, 2010
    I've purchased many (too many) cameras and lenses from private sellers on forums like this one. One issue over maybe five years now, and that was resolved without as much as a hesitation from the seller. That is one reason why I started this thread. I see it being more difficult to have that sort of success now, because more and more people are maybe making a mini side business out of this, as opposed to selling what they are using.
     
  9. Wisertime

    Wisertime Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 6, 2013
    Philly
    Steve
    I'd rather cut out the middleman like KEH...doubtful you get the box/manuals and stuff from them any way. I'm a pretty selective buyer anyway, which is mainly what you need to be. Check out the sellers first. Haven't had any issues here, Oly refurb or on ebay in the past.
    Generally I stay away from items without the backup parts...unless it's one hell of a good deal. Bodies are more of a concern than lenses.

    I had a used 9+ condition 35-100 F4 in my cart from B&H yesterday at $300..and it was sold before I could decide to get it. I figured it was probably someone from here. It was just random that it came up on my search result too.
     
  10. dornblaser

    dornblaser Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 13, 2012
    Chicago-area
    David Dornblaser
    Yup, I have E-PM1 that we no longer use that I am thinking of offering without battery, card or lens.
     
  11. davidzvi

    davidzvi Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 12, 2012
    Outside Boston MA
    David
    I actually I was referring to the "new from kit" stuff you're seeing all over eBay theses days.

    Not sure I'd offer it without a battery & charger. I personally can't think of a situation were I would actually consider buying a body and only a body. Then you also fall right into what Dean noted "were did it come from?".
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  12. Jfrader

    Jfrader Guest

    Not really true if you stay with the LN- rating. I have always gotten manuals and usually boxes, software, cables and all the other stuff. YMMV.
     
  13. Wolfeye

    Wolfeye Mu-43 Regular

    64
    Mar 20, 2015
    Iowa
    ROTFL! KEH does not test the stuff they buy, who told you they did? I've bought plently of stuff from them and had to send it back because of issue that even the most limited testing would reveal. KEH grades on appearance and offers a money back guarantee, but YOU, my friend, are their QA.
     
  14. demiro

    demiro Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Nov 7, 2010
    While a "body only" ad would make me nervous, if I had good info from the seller as to why he was selling just a body I would consider it. Especially if it was someone like David who has credibility on this forum. 3rd party charger and battery combos are cheap on eBay.

    That is sort of my point in the first post: Ask questions and try to understand the history of what you are buying.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  15. dornblaser

    dornblaser Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 13, 2012
    Chicago-area
    David Dornblaser
    I take your point. I didn't even think about the charger, I was only thinking that the E-PM1 batteries fit the E-M10. Since this thread has made think about that camera, I will offer it when my wife returns from London with all of the batteries that fit. :D
     
  16. dornblaser

    dornblaser Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 13, 2012
    Chicago-area
    David Dornblaser
    Thanks!
     
  17. davidzvi

    davidzvi Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 12, 2012
    Outside Boston MA
    David
    For me I would look at something like the E-PM1, etc as a starter body for another family member or small pocket body for an E-M1/E-M5 shooter. In either case the battery and charger would be required. And if it's not included then of course I would have to offer the seller something taking into account that I would have to spend another $20-$30 for a battery and charger. Not much when you're talking about something like an E-M1. But compared to the selling price of the E-PM1? That's like what? 20%

    This has nothing to do with anyone's ad, more what I would want as a minimum to buy. I have the E-M10 as well, I have batteries and a charger. But if I were to buy your E-PM1, for example. then sell my E-M10 and get an E-M5 mII I'd then have to go get another charger.

    Having at least one battery and one charger per body is my minimum. And that's all I would think you would need to include with your E-PM1.
     
  18. Jfrader

    Jfrader Guest

    Ok, so you had a bad experience. Get over it. Where in my post did I say "tested?" I said vetted and inspected. I believe that to be a true statement.

    As for the rest of your mean-spirited post, Bullsh!t. I only buy LN- and have NEVER had to send anything back or had other than very good results. I choose to believe my own experiences and not your internet rant.
     
  19. demiro

    demiro Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Nov 7, 2010
    It sounds like you agree with Wolfeye -- that KEH doesn't test anything -- but that you've had a different experience from him, having never received defective gear.

    I've never bought from them, or used from anyone except Amazon. Prices never seemed worth it to me to mitigate some of the risk of buying used. But it is a good point and option. Certainly keeps you away from any of the shadiness that I was talking about when I started this thread.
     
  20. tkbslc

    tkbslc Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    I just try to buy from people regularly posting and sharing. Scammers aren't likely to waste months talking about what lenses to buy or sharing landscape photos.