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Abe's of Maine
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Nov 19, 2018 13:23:07   #
stringplayer
 
Hi hogs. Do any of you have experience purchasing equipment from Abe's of Maine? Their website lists the Tamron 100-400mm F/4.5-6.3 VC USD for Nikon at $599, which is $200 less than Adorama, etc. Free shipping, no tax, etc. Any thoughts? Thanks.

Addendum -

Oops. I posted before I used the board's search function. Duh. Apologies.

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Nov 19, 2018 13:31:22   #
ken_stern
 
There has been MILES of commentary on this subject -- Mine have been a reserved positive --- Almost every one else has been totally Negative -- I'm exhausted no more from me --PLEASE - Check out past comments

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Nov 19, 2018 13:34:31   #
stringplayer
 
Got it. Thank you.

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Nov 19, 2018 13:41:41   #
PixelStan77 (a regular here)
 
stringplayer wrote:
Hi hogs. Do any of you have experience purchasing equipment from Abe's of Maine? Their website lists the Tamron 100-400mm F/4.5-6.3 VC USD for Nikon at $599, which is $200 less than Adorama, etc. Free shipping, no tax, etc. Any thoughts? Thanks.

Addendum -

Oops. I posted before I used the board's search function. Duh. Apologies.
Run away as fast as you can. It is Grey Market and they are noted for bait and switch.

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Nov 19, 2018 14:17:17   #
DirtFarmer (a regular here)
 
Abe's used to be a good place, but they were bought out and they now have numerous negative reviews.
The camera manufacturers set the prices so prices that are too low are all suspect. Having said that, respectable sites sometimes bundle things together to reduce the overall price so you can occasionally get a good deal.

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Nov 19, 2018 14:51:49   #
larryepage
 
There is a long-standing prejudice (which I used to subscribe to) on this site against "gray market" dealers. And it is true that generally spealking, products brought into the United States through unauthorized channels will almost always not be serviced under warranty. Most of the products, however, (except for Nikon) can be serviced in one way or another if that should be required. Over the years, I have found photographic equipment to be incredibly reliable unless it is damaged in some manner or just wears out. In the case of lenses, as you are considering, there is also the eventual need for possible cleaning and relubrication down the road some time. I have found a much larger risk, in the rare case when I needed a repair, has been the case in which no repair parts are available at all after a short number of years, meaning that no products, authorized or not, could be repaired beyond simple cleaning and lubrication.

I have gradually changed my stance on this issue for that reason and also because I feel strongly (and have for many years) that a key premise of the free enterprise system is the right for a retailer to set his own pricing, which many photographic agreements prohibit.

So I now feel that whether it's Abes of Maine or anywhere else, you need to evaluate how you handle, use, and otherwise treat your equipment, think about whether you feel that it may require repair requiring parts replacement during the window of time when those parts are "officially" available, and whether the manufacturer actually even cares where your item came from, then determine whether the risk you face (or maybe don't face...I don't know how strict Tamron is on this) is in line with the money you may save.

It is obvious that a large population must be fine with that risk, because Abe's is still in business and still offering deals. But it is also true that that population likely doesn't frequent this site, or else does visit here and just doesn't speak up about it. Tou need to know that I haven't bought anything from them, so I will not say whether to buy this deal or to pass on it. My guess is that the folks saying "don't" also haven't bought from them, if they believe what they are telling you.

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Nov 19, 2018 15:42:28   #
JohnSwanda (a regular here)
 
larryepage wrote:
There is a long-standing prejudice (which I used to subscribe to) on this site against "gray market" dealers. And it is true that generally spealking, products brought into the United States through unauthorized channels will almost always not be serviced under warranty. Most of the products, however, (except for Nikon) can be serviced in one way or another if that should be required. Over the years, I have found photographic equipment to be incredibly reliable unless it is damaged in some manner or just wears out. In the case of lenses, as you are considering, there is also the eventual need for possible cleaning and relubrication down the road some time. I have found a much larger risk, in the rare case when I needed a repair, has been the case in which no repair parts are available at all after a short number of years, meaning that no products, authorized or not, could be repaired beyond simple cleaning and lubrication.

I have gradually changed my stance on this issue for that reason and also because I feel strongly (and have for many years) that a key premise of the free enterprise system is the right for a retailer to set his own pricing, which many photographic agreements prohibit.

So I now feel that whether it's Abes of Maine or anywhere else, you need to evaluate how you handle, use, and otherwise treat your equipment, think about whether you feel that it may require repair requiring parts replacement during the window of time when those parts are "officially" available, and whether the manufacturer actually even cares where your item came from, then determine whether the risk you face (or maybe don't face...I don't know how strict Tamron is on this) is in line with the money you may save.

It is obvious that a large population must be fine with that risk, because Abe's is still in business and still offering deals. But it is also true that that population likely doesn't frequent this site, or else does visit here and just doesn't speak up about it. Tou need to know that I haven't bought anything from them, so I will not say whether to buy this deal or to pass on it. My guess is that the folks saying "don't" also haven't bought from them, if they believe what they are telling you.
There is a long-standing prejudice (which I used t... (show quote)


It isn't just the gray market equipment that is the problem. The "good" retailers sell gray market goods, but they disclose that, and usually offer a third party warranty. I don't know specifically about Abe's, but some of the ethically challenged photo retailers don't reveal they are selling gray market, and some also will strip accessories from the boxes and then try to sell them as extra, or do the bait-and-switch thing. People are well advised to do an internet search for reviews of any company they are thinking of doing business with. I could have saved myself some aggravation if I had figured that out earlier.

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Nov 19, 2018 15:47:00   #
ken_stern
 
larryepage wrote:
There is a long-standing prejudice (which I used to subscribe to) on this site against "gray market" dealers. And it is true that generally spealking, products brought into the United States through unauthorized channels will almost always not be serviced under warranty. Most of the products, however, (except for Nikon) can be serviced in one way or another if that should be required. Over the years, I have found photographic equipment to be incredibly reliable unless it is damaged in some manner or just wears out. In the case of lenses, as you are considering, there is also the eventual need for possible cleaning and relubrication down the road some time. I have found a much larger risk, in the rare case when I needed a repair, has been the case in which no repair parts are available at all after a short number of years, meaning that no products, authorized or not, could be repaired beyond simple cleaning and lubrication.

I have gradually changed my stance on this issue for that reason and also because I feel strongly (and have for many years) that a key premise of the free enterprise system is the right for a retailer to set his own pricing, which many photographic agreements prohibit.

So I now feel that whether it's Abes of Maine or anywhere else, you need to evaluate how you handle, use, and otherwise treat your equipment, think about whether you feel that it may require repair requiring parts replacement during the window of time when those parts are "officially" available, and whether the manufacturer actually even cares where your item came from, then determine whether the risk you face (or maybe don't face...I don't know how strict Tamron is on this) is in line with the money you may save.



Just one point to make -- Based on My purchasing positive experience with Abe's -- As far as Canon Products -- They do not sell Gray Market -- At least to yours truly

It is obvious that a large population must be fine with that risk, because Abe's is still in business and still offering deals. But it is also true that that population likely doesn't frequent this site, or else does visit here and just doesn't speak up about it. Tou need to know that I haven't bought anything from them, so I will not say whether to buy this deal or to pass on it. My guess is that the folks saying "don't" also haven't bought from them, if they believe what they are telling you.
There is a long-standing prejudice (which I used t... (show quote)

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Nov 19, 2018 15:50:45   #
ken_stern
 
What I was attempting to say --- Based on my "positive" experiences (2) Abe's did not sell Gray Market -- That is as far as Canon products -- At least too me

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Nov 19, 2018 15:52:48   #
larryepage
 
JohnSwanda wrote:
It isn't just the gray market equipment that is the problem. The "good" retailers sell gray market goods, but they disclose that, and usually offer a third party warranty. I don't know specifically about Abe's, but some of the ethically challenged photo retailers don't reveal they are selling gray market, and some also will strip accessories from the boxes and then try to sell them as extra, or do the bait-and-switch thing. People are well advised to do an internet search for reviews of any company they are thinking of doing business with. I could have saved myself some aggravation if I had figured that out earlier.
It isn't just the gray market equipment that is th... (show quote)


John--
I agree with everything you say here. And I'm sorry that you had a bad experience. Most of what I said in my post is based on the reality that well over 99% of photographic equipment (and I'd love to know the real percentage) never sees the inside of a service facility, whether for warranty or paid repair. Heavily used equipment does need maintenance periodically, but even that is not really possible once you can no longer get new grips to put back on after disassembling a camera body. Lenses are generally not a problem to disassemble and reassemble without having to replace ancillary parts.

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Nov 19, 2018 16:32:54   #
PixelStan77 (a regular here)
 
larryepage wrote:
There is a long-standing prejudice (which I used to subscribe to) on this site against "gray market" dealers. And it is true that generally spealking, products brought into the United States through unauthorized channels will almost always not be serviced under warranty. Most of the products, however, (except for Nikon) can be serviced in one way or another if that should be required. Over the years, I have found photographic equipment to be incredibly reliable unless it is damaged in some manner or just wears out. In the case of lenses, as you are considering, there is also the eventual need for possible cleaning and relubrication down the road some time. I have found a much larger risk, in the rare case when I needed a repair, has been the case in which no repair parts are available at all after a short number of years, meaning that no products, authorized or not, could be repaired beyond simple cleaning and lubrication.

I have gradually changed my stance on this issue for that reason and also because I feel strongly (and have for many years) that a key premise of the free enterprise system is the right for a retailer to set his own pricing, which many photographic agreements prohibit.

So I now feel that whether it's Abes of Maine or anywhere else, you need to evaluate how you handle, use, and otherwise treat your equipment, think about whether you feel that it may require repair requiring parts replacement during the window of time when those parts are "officially" available, and whether the manufacturer actually even cares where your item came from, then determine whether the risk you face (or maybe don't face...I don't know how strict Tamron is on this) is in line with the money you may save.

It is obvious that a large population must be fine with that risk, because Abe's is still in business and still offering deals. But it is also true that that population likely doesn't frequent this site, or else does visit here and just doesn't speak up about it. Tou need to know that I haven't bought anything from them, so I will not say whether to buy this deal or to pass on it. My guess is that the folks saying "don't" also haven't bought from them, if they believe what they are telling you.
There is a long-standing prejudice (which I used t... (show quote)
Larry, I have dealt with them so I speak from experience. RUN don't walk away from ABES.

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Nov 19, 2018 21:32:15   #
larryepage
 
Stan--

Avoiding a business because of business practices is a whole different thing. I was speaking only to a blanket treatment of product sourcing options.

I will never argue against a warning against unfair or dishonest businesses.

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Nov 20, 2018 05:31:07   #
hammond
 
They gave me the runaround on a Nikon Fisheye 8-15mm that was 'unbelievably' priced about $200 less than standard MSRP... after I placed the order, they called to confirm that I understood it would not ship with the lens cap or end cap, nor would it come with the soft case it is packaged with (even though their site shows a "compare to" price that is compared to the standard lens packaging). They said it was a 'wholesale' version instead of 'retail' version.
I found the lens cap, end cap, and bag for a total of about $40 so I said fine, send me just the lens.
Then they called me two days later to tell me that actually the lens was out of stock, but if I wanted the 'retail version' at full price, they could ship it right away - a clear bait and switch.
I researched AbesofMaine and found tons of complaints against them.
I added my own complaint on Consumer Reports, and they then replied on Consumer Reports that they would honor the original deal - of course, by that time I'd already ordered and received the lens from UniquePhoto.com.

Suffice to say, I will never do business with Abe ever again.

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Nov 20, 2018 06:05:21   #
billnikon (a regular here)
 
stringplayer wrote:
Hi hogs. Do any of you have experience purchasing equipment from Abe's of Maine? Their website lists the Tamron 100-400mm F/4.5-6.3 VC USD for Nikon at $599, which is $200 less than Adorama, etc. Free shipping, no tax, etc. Any thoughts? Thanks.

Addendum -

Oops. I posted before I used the board's search function. Duh. Apologies.


GEE, I wonder why it's $200.00 less than anyone else. GEE, I just can't figure it out. Must be a wonderful price. So, why can't Abe's get respect? GEE, I wonder why?

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Nov 20, 2018 06:17:37   #
bigjoe
 
stringplayer wrote:
Hi hogs. Do any of you have experience purchasing equipment from Abe's of Maine? Their website lists the Tamron 100-400mm F/4.5-6.3 VC USD for Nikon at $599, which is $200 less than Adorama, etc. Free shipping, no tax, etc. Any thoughts? Thanks.

Addendum -

Oops. I posted before I used the board's search function. Duh. Apologies.



This is my experience with them I got duped into a nikkor 200-500 for nearly $500 cheaper than anywhere else I took a chance and bought it online directly through them the very next day a representative emailed me asking me to call him which I did he informed me that what I just purchased was just the lanes without a Lens hood tripod collar lens caps and that if I wanted these accessories I would have to pay an extra $500 Needless to say I went to head and paid the extra 500 I contact Nikon Nikon said these assessor come with the Lens in the end I paid $100 extra for the lens I could have bought It anywhere else 100 less at any camera store and a case of bait and switch I filed a complaint with the Better Business Bureau in there city just go to a local camera store and just buy the lens from them

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