What an experience this turned out to be! In an effort to save money we opted to order our new camera equipment from on-line retailers rather than from an outlet. To be fair, ordering the equipment did in fact save us over $1000.00, money that can and will be used for much better, and less selfish things than buying photography equipment. Not only did it save us a great deal of money, we were able to acquire far more equipment than we otherwise would have been able to had we gone through our typical buying avenues.
The nightmare with allnewshop started shortly after the order was placed. It didn’t take long after placing the order for a tracking number to be assigned to it, making me think it was on the way. Except it wasn’t. They placed a call to me and left me a voice mail to return their call, not leaving me much information at all. When I tried to return their call on Friday only 40 minutes after I got the voice mail from them, they were already closed for the day. I left my name and number and asked them to call me back. Tag, you’re it!
I finally got a call back from them again on Sunday, which I had again missed, but was able to get back to them right away. When I got on the phone with the gentleman he proceeded to tell me that they were out of the 650-1300mm lens that was supposed to come with the kit and that it had been discontinued, but they were going to swap out the lens with another, much smaller one. On top of the significantly cheaper lens they were going to give me a 3 year warranty. This was originally presented in such a way as “this is how this will happen” rather than coming across like they were trying to satisfy me as a customer. “This is what we’re doing with this kit…”
When I asked why they still had this on the website if they didn’t have the kit as a whole, the only answer was, “I don’t know.” He then followed it up with another attempt to explain what they were going to do. I asked how long they had been out of the lens, and when it was discontinued, which he also did not know. As we chatted, it started to feel like a typical bait and switch, and when I expressed this thought, he strongly stated that it was not a bait and switch, then explained again that the lens had been discontinued.
The 650-1300mm lens was one of the primary reasons for choosing this kit. While I didn’t figure it would be some “high end” lens, I figured it would be good enough for myself and my son to play with and maybe get some otherwise missed shots while we were out shooting and we were both looking forward to it. After the gentleman on the phone made several trips to speak to his supervisor and offer counter offers, seemingly frustrated when I was looking up the value of said offers, I finally said, “You know what, lets just cancel the whole thing.” When I initially said it, he flatly explained that I needed to go to the website and submit something in order to cancel. However, I don’t hardly ever order things from Ebay. In fact prior to ordering this kit from allnewshop and the few items from 6ave I don’t remember the last time I used Ebay’s website; I wasn’t letting him off the phone until I had the order canceled and confirmation from him that it was done. As I was working through the site, and asking him where to go (maybe 10 seconds passed), he abruptly asked me to hold on while he went and spoke to his supervisor one more time.
When he returned this time, he informed me that they were going to order another 650-1300mm lens (one apparently that had not been discontinued) and put it with the kit and send it to me. So let me get this straight… You’ve delayed shipping two days, called me twice, spent almost 40 minutes on the phone with me offering counter deals because you couldn’t send me what I ordered in this not-a-bait-and-switch-deal and now, just when I’m going to cancel the whole works, you’re going to order a lens special in order to give me exactly what I agreed to buy? Perfect! I clarified probably three different ways that “the kit would be just as originally advertised” and he confirmed every time it would be. After making sure I had his name, and contact information I let him go and waited.
My son and I eagerly awaited the arrival of this kit. Yesterday one of our orders showed up and we were able to play around a little, but we were excited to get the rest. Today it showed up, we brought it into the office, opened the box and left it sit. We live in the frozen north and we wanted to just leave it all alone until it had a chance to come up to room temperature. In hindsight I should have taken pictures of this whole package, especially after yesterdays unpacking, but I didn’t. Instead, I got only one picture of the camera box, after we had unpacked it all.
After the package had been here an hour or so, we decided we’d start to dig into it. We gently unpackaged everything and took inventory, and when we saw this box we were excited! I thought it was weird that this is the kit they sent me, but I thought maybe after the hassle they decided to send this upgrade along with everything else in the package and I anticipating a raving review in the making!
But that wasn’t the case. Instead what I found when I opened this box was, like the last order, not a single thing inside the box was left unopened except the charging cord. The 18-140mm lens had been removed, and replaced with the 18-55m. The camera was barely wrapped in the plastic it originally was wrapped in, the manual was laying free, no warranty card was included, and the plug to the left was missing completely. I wouldn’t even had known that peace was missing except the other camera I ordered had one in it. All this leaving me wondering the same thing I was wondering with the order I got from 6ave, new, or refurbished?
I had done the math before I ordered this, and the value of the kit was in the body and lenses. That was the main reason I was going to cancel the order all together if they couldn’t provide all of them. The rest of the items truly were extras, but those extras quickly wear out when they are at the level these were. The tripod, which I didn’t expect to use a whole lot because I have a really nice one, is garbage. I thought my kid could use it once in a while as long as we didn’t extend it all the way, but when I say it’s garbage, I really mean it’s garbage. The peace you screw down to tighten it so that it stays raised, doesn’t hold it in place and so it falls right down. But really I suspect this is a blessing of sorts since I probably shouldn’t put a D7100 on top of the flimsy thing anyways, it’s barely fit for a point and shoot. I’m sure I could send the tripod back and get them to send me a new one, but it’d probably cost more to ship it back than the thing is worth to begin with.
The memory card that was sent with the camera is horrible. I wasn’t counting on it being good, but I’m not sure a slower one could have been sent. This wasn’t a huge deal since I knew I’d be upgrading them, I only mention it because there is already so many issues. It won’t be long though, and it will be collecting dust anyways.
So why didn’t I just pack it up and send it back? The thought crossed my mind. I’m hoping that when they read this review, they’re anxious to make an offer of some sort that helps alleviate the annoyances. Ultimately we want the camera, and the lenses are all good, but the experience of this was sub-par to say the least. I was going to contact them before I blogged about it, but I figured I didn’t want to write this down twice and as such, I blogged it and will link it in my message to them. I’ll be happy to amend this post with any positive outcomes, and I’m waiting to submit my rating and comment on Ebay until they have a chance to make this right.
UPDATE 4/7/2015 – The company contacted me promptly on hearing of my concerns and worked with me to provide a satisfying solution. While it remains greatly disappointing to have to go through this process, I am appreciative of their effort to offer a solution. The seller, allnewshop, stood behind the equipment by issuing a 3 year all inclusive extended warranty on the camera body. They were quick to accept my suggestion of this. My concern was that the camera continue to work, and if something go wrong that it would be covered since there was no warranty card or paperwork in the box that would allow me recourse through Nikon directly.