Olympus Pricing Observations

ac12

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Right or wrong, "refurbished" always just seemed like a fancier way to say "used" to me, and I never buy anything used so I always ignored them.

I noticed in Canada that the regular prices of the "Pro" lenses increased last year, and other than occasional sales and some differences between retailers, I haven't noticed any fluctuations.

In theory . . .
Used could be used for years.
Refurb is formerly demo gear or item that has been returned (for whatever reason). So used very little or not at all.

Used would have had no one other than the seller doing a QA on it. And the seller could be trying to pass a problem on to you.
Refurb, IF done right, has a QA check on the gear, and any issues fixed. But as I've said, there could also be NO QA done.
 
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In theory . . .
Used could be used for years.
Refurb is formerly demo gear or item that has been returned (for whatever reason). So used very little or not at all.

Used would have had no one other than the seller doing a QA on it. And the seller could be trying to pass a problem on to you.
Refurb, IF done right, has a QA check on the gear, and any issues fixed. But as I've said, there could also be NO QA done.

In my experience, the reconditioned gear from Olympus has been in like-new mint condition. I even got some lenses with the blue plastic film still on them. I have had no problems with their reconditioned gear except for a 25 f1.8 lens that was DOA. I sent it back for warranty repair and got it back in a week, working fine and looking good. That puts their reconditioned stuff in a class above even near mint used. So, I don't equate Olympus reconditioned with used, by any means. This was before OMDS, and I dunno if there's been any change with that. The only quibble I have now is the way that they priced their reconditioned gear.
 
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I can't speak to Olympus refurb. But my experience with manufacturer refurb stuff has generally been very good. Basically some % of manufactured tech is going to have issues. With refurb, you've let someone else pay full price and experience the issue, and you're getting it back with that fixed, in very good shape, for normally a good chunk less than new.
 
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That's a pretty harsh reply. Some companies that resell refurbished tell you exactly what refurbished means. Apple provides a good amount of detail, for example. OMD doesn't go into detail on their site, but that doesn't necessarily mean the process is a trade secret. I thought at one time they did go into specifics, but maybe that was taken down with the change in ownership.
Agreed. I got a really good rundown from the salesperson when I picked up an iPhone. The question was around replacing my phone when something was not able to be fixed to "new" condition under AppleCare. Not that anyone has time to burn doing this, but I'd be curious to see the response I get from Olympus after they understand I've received my order (less investigative reporter-like). Then again, it might stop right with @Steveinslc's description if there's no more detail they'll divulge.
 
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ac12

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Agreed. I got a really got rundown from the salesperson when I picked up an iPhone. The question was around replacing my phone when something was not able to be fixed to "new" condition under AppleCare. Not that anyone has time to burn doing this, but I'd be curious to see the response I get from Olympus after they understand I've received my order (less investigative reporter-like). Then again, it might stop right with @Steveinslc's description if there's no more detail they'll divulge.

Depends who you communicate with. In many companies, the left hand often does not know what the right hand does.

When I worked at Maxtor (MANY years ago), I talked to the warehouse manager and the techs that did the QA on the returned drives. So I got deeper than most CSRs do.

BTW, I did have an Apple refurb that I bought direct from Apple, that did not work.
I bought my wife a refurb iPad. It did NOT work from Day 1. We took it to the Apple store, where they tried to get it to work, and they couldn't. The manager gave us a warranty replacement.
 
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Depends who you communicate with. In many companies, the left hand often does not know what the right hand does.

When I worked at Maxtor (MANY years ago), I talked to the warehouse manager and the techs that did the QA on the returned drives. So I got deeper than most CSRs do.

BTW, I did have an Apple refurb that I bought direct from Apple, that did not work.
I bought my wife a refurb iPad. It did NOT work from Day 1. We took it to the Apple store, where they tried to get it to work, and they couldn't. The manager gave us a warranty replacement.
Very cogent points and sorry for your experiences with Apple on that front. Nothing is 100%, and despite the luster of certain brands, they are electronics and always have a % that just don't make the cut but end up consumers' hands. Side note, I spent some time at Seagate and got some exposure to this from working with the warranty team in reverse logistics. QA is an interesting process, for sure. I learned that a good bit of it involves 3rd parties (like TechData and Olympus).
 

demiro

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Right or wrong, "refurbished" always just seemed like a fancier way to say "used" to me, and I never buy anything used so I always ignored them.

I noticed in Canada that the regular prices of the "Pro" lenses increased last year, and other than occasional sales and some differences between retailers, I haven't noticed any fluctuations.
That's funny. I almost always buy used, so refurbed seems like a less fancy way to say "new" to me. Different strokes and all. :)
 

demiro

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So I emailed OMDS with the burning question about reconditioned gear. I asked about cameras and lenses; the response, below, only mentions cameras.

Hello,

Thank you for contacting us with your inquiry.

The work that is done is not available to be found and the information is privy to our repair technicians.

The cameras are put through same clearing test that the new cameras go through to ensure you as the consumer receive the best product you can.

As to the specific details that are done, I am not able to provide you with that information.

I hope this does help, and if you have any additional questions or concerns, please feel free to let us know.


Kind regards,

Renald Demosthene
Customer Care Specialist
OM Digital Solutions Americas, inc.


Not very transparent, as was predicted, but fwiw they are saying inspection is same as new gear. I actually assumed that might better, as they presumably inspect every item after reconditioning. I don't assume they test every new item, but rather follow a sampling plan. No idea if that is accurate though.

Bottom line for me is they stand behind the reconditioned stuff, so I don't really care what they do to it. For those that do obsess on these details a bit it seems better to buy new. Peace of mind is surely worth a few extra dollars.

They get high marks for speed of response, if nothing else.
 
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So I emailed OMDS with the burning question about reconditioned gear. I asked about cameras and lenses; the response, below, only mentions cameras.

Hello,

Thank you for contacting us with your inquiry.

The work that is done is not available to be found and the information is privy to our repair technicians.

The cameras are put through same clearing test that the new cameras go through to ensure you as the consumer receive the best product you can.

As to the specific details that are done, I am not able to provide you with that information.

I hope this does help, and if you have any additional questions or concerns, please feel free to let us know.


Kind regards,

Renald Demosthene
Customer Care Specialist
OM Digital Solutions Americas, inc.


Not very transparent, as was predicted, but fwiw they are saying inspection is same as new gear. I actually assumed that might better, as they presumably inspect every item after reconditioning. I don't assume they test every new item, but rather follow a sampling plan. No idea if that is accurate though.

Bottom line for me is they stand behind the reconditioned stuff, so I don't really care what they do to it. For those that do obsess on these details a bit it seems better to buy new. Peace of mind is surely worth a few extra dollars.

They get high marks for speed of response, if nothing else.
Thanks for running that test. I agree.
 

Mack

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I haven't had much good luck buying used or refurbs. Something always seems to crop up as to why it was faulty.

Used lens had old firmware. Cost me $140 and six weeks for Olympus Service to fix it as I didn't own a m43 camera that could do the update then (It was on a DJI drone camera,). Olympus Service said original firmware update was only $40, then shot up to $180 and back down to $140 which seems to be their base repair quote.

Another were some Nikon refurb SB-900 flashes from their web store. All were defective as they over-heated fast and shut down after 4-5 full-power pops for 10 minutes. Bad design they never fixed until a new model. Didn't discover the issue until after their 90 warranty ran out, but they wouldn't do much other than say to let them cool down or fire at lesser power.

Last one was from the spectrum filter conversion used E-M1 camera. Took three copies to get a good used one from them as the first two suffered the bad (erratic) shutter dial issue right out of the box. They said they checked them fully on reassembling after the filter swap, but they showed up erratic right out of the box on the rear dial matter. Third seems okay for the dial and looks very clean for used, but it occasionally locks up which is another fault of that E-M1 model it seems. I can live with the occasional lock-ups, but not with the erratic or not working shutter dial.
 
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PakkyT

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Prior to receiving a text about a 20% discount, I saw the price of their cameras and lenses go up by about ~100 at Amazon and BH. Now that the sale is over, I can see an immediate drop.
I am pretty disgusted by this deception by "new Olympus". I can confirm that during the refurb sale that noting how expensive the refurb price of the lowly 40-150 "R" ($159) when often it is available for a low of $99 from places like Amazon. As I noted in another thread about the refurb prices I checked Amazon to see if the retail prices were jacked up and indeed the plastic "R" was selling for $199 on Amazon. Now that the sale is over, the Amazon price has dropped down to $159 which is equal to the current refurb price.

While many of us have said over the months with the announcement and sale of the imaging department "let's wait and see what actually happens" to all the doom sayers, this first move is a huge disappointment to me as the refurb sales (as someone else also pointed out) are probably 90%+ purchased by existing customers rather than new customers. So "new Olympus" basically said "F the loyal Olympus user".
 

RAH

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I am pretty disgusted by this deception by "new Olympus". I can confirm that during the refurb sale that noting how expensive the refurb price of the lowly 40-150 "R" ($159) when often it is available for a low of $99 from places like Amazon.
I noticed that $159 price myself. I've gotten so accustomed to seeing the $99 price when it is on sale (new or refurb) that I thought the $159 must be for a different lens or something! Pretty awful, for sure!
 

demiro

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I am pretty disgusted by this deception by "new Olympus". I can confirm that during the refurb sale that noting how expensive the refurb price of the lowly 40-150 "R" ($159) when often it is available for a low of $99 from places like Amazon. As I noted in another thread about the refurb prices I checked Amazon to see if the retail prices were jacked up and indeed the plastic "R" was selling for $199 on Amazon. Now that the sale is over, the Amazon price has dropped down to $159 which is equal to the current refurb price.

While many of us have said over the months with the announcement and sale of the imaging department "let's wait and see what actually happens" to all the doom sayers, this first move is a huge disappointment to me as the refurb sales (as someone else also pointed out) are probably 90%+ purchased by existing customers rather than new customers. So "new Olympus" basically said "F the loyal Olympus user".
@PakkyT You may very well be correct about this being a sign of disrespect towards loyal customers. I've been through enough M&A activities though to think that maybe it's just lack of an organized and defined overall strategy, and/or specific plan around pricing. I guess I'll keep an open mind and lean towards mild incompetence over deception for now. :)
 
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With a little luck, Olympus is following this thread. Or Panasonic is also, and could do the opposite. However, the latter's lenses and cameras have seem to gone a bit, too. Basic example: 25mm 1.7 now is 247 on Amazon... a little less budget in the grand scheme of things :cautious:.
 

RAH

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I just got an email - they are having a new sale on new stuff, and the cameras have gone down some. For example, the E-M5.3 body is now $950 (instead of the previous sale price of $1000), and the E-M1.3 body is now $1500, instead of the previous sale price of $1600. I am sorely GAS-tempted by the E-M1.3...
 
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PakkyT

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I've been through enough M&A activities though to think that maybe it's just lack of an organized and defined overall strategy, and/or specific plan around pricing.
So you are implying it could simply be a mix up that all prices went up right before the sale, stayed for those few days, then went back down again right after the sale? Most of these products have been already long established with known prices and suddenly "NOly" were not sure what the prices were supposed to be and accidentally marked them up for the duration of a sale? Ya I suppose. :rolleyes:
 

demiro

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So you are implying it could simply be a mix up that all prices went up right before the sale, stayed for those few days, then went back down again right after the sale? Most of these products have been already long established with known prices and suddenly "NOly" were not sure what the prices were supposed to be and accidentally marked them up for the duration of a sale? Ya I suppose. :rolleyes:
Not saying mix-up, more just confusion. When I consider all the f'd up stuff I've seen behind the curtain in situations like this nothing would surprise me. But you're probably right. Occam's Razor and all. A company trying to take advantage of customers is the straightest line here.
 
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Just in case you were wondering... yup, the reconditioned sale prices are still way too high. Reconditioned EM1X still going for $1,920 while a new one on sale goes for $1,800. Go figure. :rofl:
 

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