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As an adjunct to the Tangents blog, the intention with this forum is to answer any questions, and allow a diverse discussion of topics related photography. With that, see it as an open invitation to just climb in and start threads and to respond to any threads.

Camera repair and calibration

At some point every one of us has to have something looked at on their camera. Whether smacking a lens around or dropping the camera, repairs and/or a checkup is in order. In my case, over the years my camera has fallen over a few times while on my tripod (backwards so no lens damage) on both carpeting and the ground, and while there is nothing physically wrong with it that I can see  (i.e. no broken parts or rattling noises), I'd still like someone to look at it to make sure the calibration of the sensor is where it should be.

I've been looking over the authorized Nikon repair services and some of the reviews leave me wondering. The question is, how much stock do you put in reviews for these authorized places and who do you trust? I'm sure Neil has someone he adamantly trusts because his business relies on his gear being in top shape. For the record, I'm 3 hours from NYC and I have reached out to the authorized service place.  When they responded to my inquiry they were already talking about replacing parts even though I only asked about a calibration/alignment check.


  • TrevTrev Moderator
    edited March 2019

    I certainly do go by reviews, in fact that's the first thing I look at and I look at the negative ones most importantly and make sure that there is 'substance' to the negative review/s.

    eg: "This place is terrible, don't go there" is not a review but; "I experienced bad customer service, the staff person was rude and did not seem to listen to me, he/she said I would need this done and that done and it would cost me xxxxxx$'s before they even looked at it; then when I got it back the shutter was sticking, etc., etc."

    Then outweigh the reviews, if say 200, 150 are Excellent, 25 are Good, 20 are Fair, 5 are Terrible, you would be in the ballpark.

    If you can, ask if they do an 'Estimate' (generally they will charge you a fee if you do not go ahead with them, the place I use has a $75 'Estimate' (not a firm quote) but it then is included in the repairs if you go with them first and then you tell them a 'nominal' fee of like $500 (you choose) would apply where they can just go ahead and repair it up to that figure but if it's going to be over they have to contact you to authorise it first.

    Hidden problems do arise, and I have never had to go over a figure they have quoted me, but at least you won't get a shock if they quoted $375 and you get it back and it's $775. Ask first.

    If you know of anyone in that area, see if you can get some opinions on it. Even ask any professional photographers, just simply call them; also see if the company has been in business for over 10 years, that's a good indicator of their reliability/service.

    The place I go to, ( ANDERSON CAMERA REPAIRS ) and one detailed service ( SENSOR CLEAN & COMPREHENSIVE CHECK LIST ) and have done so for the past 20+ years (yep, back in film) has been in service since 1954 (65 years) and you don't get to that longevity without being trustworthy.

    Check also to make sure they are Authorised Nikon Camera Repairers, is of course a 'given'.

    Look up Nikon site itself to locate an authorised dealer in your area, but, don't just go with any one, you do your homework, as you have done right here, ask around. I cannot help you since I am in Oz, but I am sure Neil will.

    Good Luck,

    PS: Actually, have a really good look at that site I linked to above, and just check around how/what/ they do, see if your choice has something substantially laid out like that, not just a quick site and "yeah, she'll be right mate, just drop ya camera in here and we'll look after it" attitude. Another sign of professionalism.
  • So, I had my Canon 6D for about 3 years when I sent it to Canon Service for a overall checkup. I know Neil's thoughts are sort-of "don't send it in if it ain't broke", but I felt having it cleaned and checked was worth it. If I were to do it again, I would again contact Canon USA, and do exactly the same thing.

    For Nikon, I guess I would look up "Nikon USA" (if there is such a place), and send it to them.

  • MatrixphotoMatrixphoto Member
    edited March 2019
    Hi  Kevin
    I've had my Nikon D3s put back 5 times now and all my lenses calibrated. I don't actually really trust reviews that much, First  I reach to  other pros,  if they know anyone. Or I will try and Judge how professional and busy they are , I will ask a lot of question if they answer them that to me is a good sign.

    Lou Recine 

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