I purchased 3 or 4 year extended warranties with my D200 and my D300. They were backed by Mack Camera. I've not needed any warranty service or extended warranty service on either of these bodies. The extended warranties have expired. The Peace of Mind was nice.
What is the conventional wisdom when purchasing a high end Nikon, perhaps a D4, for personal, non-commercial use? Buy an extended warranty from the dealer at the time of purchase of the camera body, or just plan to pay for repairs from Nikon or from some other qualified service provider if and when they are needed?
I realize that this question is not a perfect fit for Repair Shops, but that seems to be the closest fit in the current Forums Structure.
#1. "RE: Conventional Wisdom Regarding Extended Warranties" | In response to Reply # 0avm247 Charter MemberThu 11-Oct-12 06:15 PM
Thomas, first, welcome to Nikonians and second, thank you for your support!
I don't have a pro body and like you have used extended warranties (from Nikon, not a 3rd party like MACK) for some of my bodies. When I purchased my D700 new last November, I did not get an extended warranty.
Personally, I think that should anything happen, it will happen within the first year and should be covered under warranty. Second, most purchases are made with a credit card and may (or may not) have some sort of buyer protection plan associated with the credit card that may double the warranty coverage or theft (something that a warranty will not cover).
I know of at least one case where a new camera was replaced under a credit card warranty program. I alos know of one where the buyer/owner had to pay for repair work only to have the repair refunded/reimbursed by the credit card company after the work was done and a claim filed.
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#2. "RE: Conventional Wisdom Regarding Extended Warranties" | In response to Reply # 0nrothschild Registered since 25th Jul 2004Thu 11-Oct-12 07:41 PM
Welcome to Nikonians!
(in the interest of full disclosure Tom and I met a few years ago, I guess, at our local Renaissance Festival when I shot the closing replica ~16th century cannon at dusk )
My understanding is that historically, just about anything that goes wrong with a camera that absolutely requires service (as in it is non-functional or nearly) is classed as a "B2" repair. From what I have seen discussed, and my own experience, I believe a B2 is about $350 minimum, and it could be more now as prices rise, and could be more for a Pro body like the D4. That is basically a minimum repair bill for anything substantial.
Of my 5 DSLR cameras, two were never repaired- the D70 and D200. I don't think either have over 20,000 clicks on them. As such I consider them fairly gently used.
My D2h was repaired at least once (both my fault but one covered under warranty), my D300 was repaired for an electrical lens contact issue. My D700 needed a repair at about the 3 year point that was my fault and would likely not be covered.
The D300 also had a fogged rear LCD that happened in the 2nd or 3rd year, after the normal warranty expired. That was fixed along with the electrical issue.
I bought a NikonUSA extended (3 year total) warranty on the D200 and D300. The D200 was "reasonable", somewhere around $100-150 as I recall. The D300 was dirt cheap; Adorama was selling them for like $50. It was so cheap I researched it thinking it was "too good to be true" but it did pay off. I think the going rate on the D700 was $150 or so at the time and I did not buy one, hoping to run across a "sale" or something like that, similar to the D300.
Those last 3 bodies had about 60,000 clicks each put on them during the period they were or would have been covered.
Obviously the more you use the camera the more likely to use an extended policy. I think Anthony has a point about most failures during the first few months but I'm not sure that is the case in the 2nd and 3rd year in the case where a camera is used hard, as I do in my wildlife shooting. The problem there is often coverage, though, since hard use often is classed as "user abuse" or such.
I think it is a tough call and depends on what they cost, verses the cost of a B2 repair. I don't need $1000 repair bills so I tend to buy them if they seem reasonable, somewhere around half a B2 repair or less since I figure a well used camera will fail once every six years or so, on average, after its shakedown cruise.
You will get different opinions on this. As far as I know my cards don't give me any additional coverage. I hear that Amex does but I don't need another card and don't really want another annual fee just to "insure" an occasional camera purchase. But that is certainly worth looking into.
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#3. "RE: Conventional Wisdom Regarding Extended Warranties" | In response to Reply # 2Renaissance Man Nikonian since 16th Feb 2009Thu 11-Oct-12 08:30 PM
Your reply, and the earlier reply from Anthony, are exactly the kind of feedback which I need. I hope that more members will also give their experiences and advice.
>Those last 3 bodies had about 60,000 clicks each put on them
>during the period they were or would have been covered.
To gauge my level of use, I gave my D300 about 92,000 clicks in its first 4 1/3 years. My D200 has perhaps 20,000-30,000 clicks and has been used very little since I added the D300.
I think that I would tend to use the D300 for routine documentation of things like house and yard and car repairs, and use a D4 for events and travel: ACM Special Interest Group on Ada (SIGAda) Conferences; Renaissance Fairs; Railroad and Rail Yard Photography, mountains and rivers and beaches, etc.
v/r, Tom -- Renaissance Man
#4. "RE: Conventional Wisdom Regarding Extended Warranties" | In response to Reply # 3nrothschild Registered since 25th Jul 2004Thu 11-Oct-12 10:34 PM
>> I gave my D300 about 92,000 clicks in its first 4 1/3 years
For planning purposes, with a D4 I'd double that . Hehe.
I was curious what Nikon charges for that warranty. I googled "Nikon D4 extended warranty" and got no hits, except a few Mack warranties. No NikonUSA warranty.
I've had some strange thoughts lately about the idea of spotting a remote in the jousting field, or more or less in front of the cannon.
Mack has a "no fault" policy that looks very encompassing, without digging into the fine print. I wonder if they would cover damage if you blow it up with a cannon?
(I'm kind of serious about that- I'm getting entranced with the idea of a full frontal shot of the cannon but I couldn't bear that risk myself)
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#5. "RE: Conventional Wisdom Regarding Extended Warranties" | In response to Reply # 0
While I have purchased a few Nikon extended warranties over the years when they were offered so cheap that it was silly to not get them, I (knock on wood) have not needed to use the standard one year warranty much less one of the extended warranties. Each of us has our own tolerance for risk and we should make our decisions based on that and our past experience.
What would be nice is an All Hazzard warranty that is dirt cheap.
Good Luck and Enjoy your Nikons!