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Thread: Is it worth repairing a camera.

  1. #1
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    Is it worth repairing a camera.

    I have a midrange point and shoot camera which until recently was working great then next time I put memory card in it would not click into place. I am sure it is something minor like a litlle spring or something. I am reluctant to put it into landfill.

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    jiro's Avatar
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    Re: Is it worth repairing a camera.

    Any camera is worth repairing specially if the problem is as minor as that. Just my 2 cents.

  3. #3
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    Re: Is it worth repairing a camera.

    Yes I agree but very hard to find anyone that will and if you can they charge huge money.

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    Re: Is it worth repairing a camera.

    over here in Uk some of the manufacturers have a set charge for any repairs, i think it cost me 90 to get my fuji finepixs repaired, it would have cost that no matter how big/small the repair was, its worth checking up with the maker,cheers martyn

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    Moderator GrumpyDiver's Avatar
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    Re: Is it worth repairing a camera.

    How old is the camera? That would be my first question. If it is recently out of warranty, perhaps, but if it is more than 3 or 4 years old, I would suggest you consider a replacement.

    The cost of repair plus any shipping charges could be close to the cost of a more modern replacement that is more talented than the one that is broken. The problem with aging digital cameras is that something else could go wrong shortly after you get it back from the repair shop. Point & shoot cameras are not "built to last"; at least this has generally been my experience.

    If you don't want to repair or replace it, try holding the memory card in with a piece of tape. This worked for me in a similar cirucmstance.
    Last edited by GrumpyDiver; 3rd June 2012 at 02:42 PM.

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    Re: Is it worth repairing a camera.

    I'd check the minimum charge for repairs. With some repair shops and manufacturers, the minimum charges are so high that it is not worth repairing things unless they are expensive to buy, and sometimes not even then. It's very wasteful, but I think I know why it happens. The devices are assembled in highly efficient factories that require very little labor per unit, but repairs are often labor intensive.

    I had this happen last year with a very expensive lens (Canon EF-S 100m L macro) that I dropped (!) on the shore of a lake. It seemed to survive the impact fine, but it had water in it. I sent it to Canon, and they sent it back as irreparable. When it arrived, after I had bought a replacement, I found that it had dried out and still worked. I called Canon to complain. The rep explained to me that they won't repair it unless they can get it to the condition of a refurb that they can stand behind. He patiently listed everything they would have to do in order to to that--completely disassembling the lens, cleaning everything, replacing the circuit boards (not waterproof and prone to failure after being fully immersed), and then reassembling it and realigning all of the lenses. He explained that the total cost would exceed the cost of buying a new lens. He said that the old one might continue to work, but it could fail at any time, e.g., because of water in the circuit boards.

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    Re: Is it worth repairing a camera.

    Ask the same question from a professional and get an estimate that means something. Right now all you can get is conjecture without knowing exactly what is wrong. Perhaps it's just a bent pin? In any case, deal with some facts before you make a decision.

  8. #8

    Re: Is it worth repairing a camera.

    DanK is right. The cost of labour makes repairs prohibitively expensive, compared to the original purchase price. This means we throw away a lot of items that could be repaired, which is bad for the environment. In order to protect the environment the government really needs to bring back slavery/indentured servitude. Obviously they would need to be fairly well trained slaves, to repair complex electrical/optical equipment. I am sure they could be encouraged to learn with copious beatings.

  9. #9
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    Re: Is it worth repairing a camera.

    Quote Originally Posted by GrumpyDiver View Post
    How old is the camera? That would be my first question. If it is recently out of warranty, perhaps, but if it is more than 3 or 4 years old, I would suggest you consider a replacement.

    The cost of repair plus any shipping charges could be close to the cost of a more modern replacement that is more talented than the one that is broken. The problem with aging digital cameras is that something else could go wrong shortly after you get it back from the repair shop. Point & shoot cameras are not "built to last"; at least this has generally been my experience.

    If you don't want to repair or replace it, try holding the memory card in with a piece of tape. This worked for me in a similar cirucmstance.
    I agree. If it works with the card held in place with a bit of tape, then that's got to be the answer. It's doubtful a repair will be a viable option.
    If you've ever taken one of these things apart you'll know the catches, springs and other mechanical bits and pieces are very cheap and flimsy (and that's not just cheap & cheerful P&S cameras, either).

  10. #10
    Moderator GrumpyDiver's Avatar
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    Re: Is it worth repairing a camera.

    Quote Originally Posted by dan marchant View Post
    DanK is right. The cost of labour makes repairs prohibitively expensive, compared to the original purchase price. This means we throw away a lot of items that could be repaired, which is bad for the environment. In order to protect the environment the government really needs to bring back slavery/indentured servitude. Obviously they would need to be fairly well trained slaves, to repair complex electrical/optical equipment. I am sure they could be encouraged to learn with copious beatings.
    Don't forget, that these products are designed to be produced to a price-point, and the ability to repair these is a very minor design consideration. When one looks at the cost of a highly paid repair technician taking and re-assembling a product like this, it's not hard to see why repairing these cameras out of warranty rarely makes sense.

    The other issue is replacement parts. Again, with the short production cycles on these cameras, it will be difficult, if not impossible to find spare parts if the unit is more than a couple of years old. I remember that one of my relatives had his camera "upgraded" at the repair shop, as the parts for his DSLR were no longer available even during the in-warranty period; the camera came back with a sensor with 2MP higher resolution. While this may bother the ecologically minded people out there, it is reality...

  11. #11
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    Re: Is it worth repairing a camera.

    It depends on a lot of things .
    My wife loves her nikon N 60 - the thing takes film but she likes it . It cost me 115 dollars , for a cleaning and new battery last year before we went to Mexico . Small price if she is happy .
    Anyway , if there is no reason to fix - you would be better off just buying a new camera . If you don't have an extra memory card , buy one 1st and try it - then look for a new camera if it does not work .
    To be with out a camera really sucks - at least for most of us on this site .
    Good luck .

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