View Full Version : Canon Speedlite
16th of May 2001 (Wed), 09:56
Any idea how to distinguish the "Grey-Imports" from the authentic Canon product? Rang up one of the US based mail-order places for the 420EX price and was told that one is for $219.00 and the other is $169.00! Rather surprised, I queried why different prices for the same product and was told that the cheaper one is from Taiwan/(non-Japan) and the flash charge rate is slower than the original 'US' product!
Canon UK state that there is just the 'one' genuine 420EX which is manufactured in their factory in Korea but seemed elusive to comment on the price difference of similar products in the US.
17th of May 2001 (Thu), 07:26
Ok here you go.... Gray Market equipment is brought into this country through every legal or illegal way possible but not through legal Canon agent. Gray Market equipment may be refurbished, salesman samples, pieces that didn't make it past quality checkpoint or simply pieces that were stored in the wrong place.
Either way that means no warranty from manufacturer. Sometimes seller offers their own warranty on the gray market product but than it's up to you to trust them. The only place in the US that I would trust on their own warranty for gray market goods is B & H in NYC.
Gray Market equipment is NOT slower, not made in China when the rest is in Japan and doesn't have different specs. Gray Market equipment is usually unaccounted for, missing or labeled not fit for use.
I tell you a story about gray market stuff. Friend of mine bought a Nikon lens. Everyone sold it for $300. Dealer cost for this lens was about $260. He didn't feel like spending the money so he got a gray market lens for $200. Great!!! He was using the lens for less than a year when separation in the glass started to show together with fungus. Nikon was laughing for days from his warranty card and place that sold him the lens told him that for additional $150 they would fix the lens. He lost big time. I called my Nikon rep and he traced the serial number to the crate of lenses that was sitting on the shipyard for 6 months too long. They were supposed to be destroyed but it turned out that they were sold to somebody in the US. Now not every gray market story is so horrible. I have couple of gray market lenses for my underwater set up and I love them (saved over a $1000). Just be ware... If they are giving you the story about slower sync it's not 420 flash they are selling you.
27th of May 2001 (Sun), 00:57
If you were buying a Nikon in the USA, gray market would mean something since Nikon won't honor the warranty. But Canon USA will, so it's not much of an issue. They don't need your warranty card either, just your original bill of sale.
In addition reputable Canon dealers (Adorama, B&H) that sell gray market products will stand behind their own warranties of the stuff they sell. (I'd list Camera World too but I don't think they deal in gray market products.)
Also gray market Canon products are in no way inferrior to other Canon products, they are just not brought in through the USA Canon importer.
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