6
   

"Used" v. "Refurbished"

 
 
Reply Mon 5 Jul, 2010 09:36 am
Do ratings for used goods (mint, excellent, good, etc.) have universal standards or are they arbitrarily assigned by the seller using whatever criteria they want to use?

What about things listed as "refurbished"? Are they generally better or worse than a "used/excellent" rating?

Any advice appreciated!
 
tsarstepan
 
  2  
Reply Mon 5 Jul, 2010 09:46 am
@boomerang,
Refurbished means something has been sent back and repaired by the original factory/manufacturer.

Used just means the item at hand has been owned and well used by one or more persons. It tends to mean the potential buyer will be buying this item as is.

For full disclosure: I am highly suspicious regarding the quality of electronic items that bear the refurbished label. I've heard too many anecdotal stories regarding laptops, printers, cameras, etc... that despite their repair history, tend to go kaput when they are purchased at a cheaper price simply because these items are former warranty returned items which are fixed and returned to the market only to be sold by very shady gray market retail stores who (at least in NYC) give the purchaser of the cheaper refurbished items a run around if the electronic device inevitably goes kaput again so soon after its post-refurbishment resale.
boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Mon 5 Jul, 2010 09:49 am
@tsarstepan,
Aha!

Thanks you. That clears up the "refurbished" thing pretty good. I have not had great success getting things repaired so I get the drift.
0 Replies
 
Ragman
 
  2  
Reply Mon 5 Jul, 2010 09:58 am
@boomerang,
In a few words, there's no universal standard.

{Warning: as a prof photog, I avoid and advise my friends to avoid Refurb units. The trouble and worry are not worth the meager savings before and after the short warranty period is up.}

However, can you be specific about in which venue? For example a major used camera publication Shutterbug has certain standard for used equipment mint, near mint, etc. Some classified ad publications use other various standards, But none indicate the relative wear of refurb.

So the label 'Used' has a different connotation ...and may be a tight standard or loose depending on the reputation of the venue that sells the goods.

Another example of the standards is by Adorama (brick-and-mortar-storefront in NYC w/ large presence on Amazon/Internet). They sell a ton of refurb digi-cams on the 'net. While they state the condition of their refurbs and stand behind units with a 30-day-warranty they do not to my knowledge guarantee the unit's wear level. Of course, in digicams it's the wear and tear to the shutter, sensor, lens mech ...etc. that matters most.

If you, let's say arbitrarily pick other advertisers on Ebay, it's also random. By law, they have to state if it's refurbished but it's hazy as to how used a unit is after refurbishment. A refurbished digital camera can be 'near mint', light wear or even heavy wear marks. If a camera shows how many shutter actuations that's great; but until you get into DSLR level, you won't see that on P&S digi-cams.

At the risk of repetition, 'Refurbished' is not a clear statement of relative wear. And some advertisers are better about telling you the condition. So on Ebay, I go generally by the reputation or Ebay-er's consumer rating.

Can you see issues there with statement of 'Refurb' and 'Used' standards?
or have I just rambled on in the wrong direction?

Ragman
 
  3  
Reply Mon 5 Jul, 2010 10:09 am
@tsarstepan,
Quote:
Refurbished means something has been sent back and repaired by the original factory/manufacturer.


Actually, in addition to those who sell factory-refurb units, there are independent repair places that sell refurbished cameras on Ebay and other venues. They're sometimes not even big-name-brand-authorized repair centers either. More places to avoid.
dyslexia
 
  4  
Reply Mon 5 Jul, 2010 10:16 am
I bought this refurbished Yugo one time, refurbished by the factory. I made it five miles from the dealer before the transmission fell out. It was definitely good as new.
Ragman
 
  1  
Reply Mon 5 Jul, 2010 10:17 am
@dyslexia,
hehe. Was that when you switched over to your Porsche?
0 Replies
 
boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Mon 5 Jul, 2010 10:19 am
@Ragman,
Hi Ragman and thanks, your information is great!

I am looking at digital cameras. Mine went kaput and after looking around I decided I just want to replace it with the same model -- it's an OLD model but I really like it and have a few extras that still work great.

Replacements are all used and surprisingly expensive for such an old camera. So I started looking at the model release right after it.

Amazon has two --one "like new" and one "refurbished". There is a .05 difference in price: http://www.amazon.com/Olympus-E-20-Digital-Camera-Optical/dp/B00005QCO1/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=electronics&qid=1278346086&sr=8-1

I had no idea how to evaluate these ratings and started wondering about how the whole rating system works.
boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Mon 5 Jul, 2010 10:21 am
@Ragman,

Quote:
Actually, in addition to those who sell factory-refurb units, there are independent repair places that sell refurbished cameras on Ebay and other venues. They're sometimes not even big-name-brand-authorized repair centers either. More places to avoid.


YIKES!!!
boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Mon 5 Jul, 2010 10:23 am
@dyslexia,
<snort>

This is why I try to keep my 15 year old car running.
Foofie
 
  1  
Reply Mon 5 Jul, 2010 10:28 am
I have also heard the category, "gently used." I think this is a category when accepting donations to a charitable thrift store. I believe the inference is that by being "gently used" it is still quite marketable by the thrift store.

0 Replies
 
firefly
 
  3  
Reply Mon 5 Jul, 2010 10:38 am
@boomerang,
I bought my first computer and monitor as factory refurbished items, and I purchased them directly from the Hewlett Packard Web site. They were both sold with warrantees, and I purchased additional extended warrantees, and I did save a great of money (hundreds of dollars) vs buying them new. Both items looked and worked as new.

It was at least 5 years before the computer needed any sort of repairs, and the monitor never malfunctioned. So, based on that experience, I would purchase factory refurbished items again, but only directly from the manufacturer, and with some sort of warrantee. If anything, the refurbished items may be more carefully checked before being shipped out for resale, and they are sold to look and function "as new".

More recently, I purchased a very cheap ($14, including shipping) refurbished SanDisk mp3 player from Buy.com because I wasn't sure I'd really use an mp3 player very much. Turned out I loved it, and it worked fine for about a month before it suddenly died. It had no warrantee, so I was just out my money, and learned my lesson. I'm about to order a brand new one from Amazon.

Boomer, check the manufacturer's Web site for your digital camera, and see if you can find your model which has been refurbished by that manufacturer. If you can find it that way, you could probably buy with more confidence.



Ragman
 
  1  
Reply Mon 5 Jul, 2010 07:48 pm
@boomerang,
At one time, perhaps 7 yrs ago, I owned a similar model - an Olympus Camedia c-4040, which is an 4 Mpix p&s. Oly make a pretty good P&S. I'm a little skeptical that you can easily find an Oly E-20 that is either a good risk as an MFR-refurb with lengthy warranty or a used in great shape. I'm going to poke around the 'net and see where one might be,.
0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Mon 5 Jul, 2010 07:54 pm
@boomerang,
Heh, mine is nineteen now. I win!
Oh, wait, what do I win?

I still have my two old heavyweight nikormat & nikkormat that need a'fixin'. Plus a Nikon 70 that is in working order. Can't part with them yet..
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Mon 5 Jul, 2010 07:55 pm
@firefly,
Sounds like a good idea.
0 Replies
 
Ragman
 
  2  
Reply Mon 5 Jul, 2010 08:05 pm
@boomerang,
I see one 'bargain' Oly E-2o for $105. Not what I'd call an attractive condition at a well-known used Internet dealer KEH.com.
http://www.keh.com/camera/Olympus-Digital-Point-and-Shoots/1/sku-DO059991093170?r=FE

KEH also have the older E-10 for $126 in EX+ condition but it's only 4 mp.

I'm still looking.

In the meanwhile, here's one such venue's explanation of terms:
(BTW, I'd never buy a used digicam with less than a 30 day warranty and in any less than EXC or EXC+ condition. Also if it's more than 200 I'd think twice. but that's just me.


NEW (Brand New) New - Never Used - All original packaging and manuals included.

MINT (Like New) 98-100% of original condition - Like New with little or no signs of use.

MINT- (Mint Minus) 96-97% of original condition - May have slight wear but only visible under close up inspection.

EXC+ (Excellent Plus) 90-95% of original condition - Lens Glass very clean - cosmetically may show slight wear and/or signs of use.

EXC (Excellent) 85-89% of original condition - Shows signs of moderate use - Lens Glass is perfect but may have some dust which will not affect picture quality.

GOOD (Good) 75-84% of original condition - Appears well used and may include dings, brassing, scrapes and bruises but is in fully functional condition. Glass may have cleaning marks or small scratches which won't affect picture quality.

FAIR (Fair) 50-74% of original condition - Appears to have been used very heavily with multiple dings, scrapes, scratches and heavy brassing all possible. Lens Glass may have fungus, excessive dust and/or scratches that will likely affect picture quality.
boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Mon 5 Jul, 2010 08:44 pm
@Ragman,
Wow, Ragman, thanks! I'm going to have a look at those.

Right now I have miraculously got mine to work again! I'm so happy! I really didn't have the money to spend on an upgrade right now plus, I didn't want to have to learn a new camera since I'm supposed to shoot some stuff at the end of this month. I hope my repair will hold up for a while.

I really love the E10. I know it's only 4MP but I've printed up to 30x40 with it and had crystal clear results. I was talking to a friend about her fairly new Nikon (10MP, I think) and she said she could only get good prints up to 10x14. I'm a jughead when it comes to digital (which is probably why I like my basic, tank-like Olympus) but I think it must be because mine shoots in TIFF and RAW formats as well as in JPEG. Maybe she's just using her's wrong.

I'm definately going to look at that E10 for $126 maybe to have as a backup.

Thanks again!
boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Mon 5 Jul, 2010 08:46 pm
@ossobuco,
My oldest working SLR is 35 years old.

This one is my oldest digital SLR.
Ragman
 
  1  
Reply Mon 5 Jul, 2010 08:52 pm
@boomerang,
I have a 6 Mpixel Nikon D-100 and I print very nicely to 13x 19 inches. Using it for professional images, I print it on Epson Stylus Photo R2400, just to give you an idea. A 6 MP DLSR will yield you some great results. However, many P&S cameras have certain limitations, not to mention limitations of lesser printers.

I also, have Nikon N90 and FM2N (neg film) and an 1965 TLR med format Rolleiflex. all these are pretty useful as i scan negs or slides still when i plug in my scanner.

A 4mp camera can be very useful with 30 x 40 enlargements.
boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Mon 5 Jul, 2010 08:57 pm
@Ragman,
Oh! Maybe that's the deal.... I have all my stuff printed at a photo lab -- including the digital stuff.

I have a P+S Pentax Optio that I think is 6MP. I got it because I wanted to shoot underwater and at the time it was one of the few that you could do it with. I think the largest print I've had made from that camera is a 12x12. It turned out gorgeous so I'm sure I could go much bigger.
0 Replies
 
 

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