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Loup Garou
23rd February 2016, 09:44 PM
A friend ordered a silver Panasonic 35-100mm f4-5.6 from an E-bay seller named "Digiwideinternationalstudio" for only 110 new. When the lens arrived, he thought that it seemed to be of poor build quality and the front bayonet mount taking the hood was loose. Furthermore, the lens weighed only 124g with both caps on, while the official weight is 135g.

He has applied for return and refund. We suspect that this may be a fraudulent imitation and not a genuine Panasonic item. I have heard that there is now a market for these in the Far East. What action, if any, should be taken apart from the return request?

Graham_of_Rainham
23rd February 2016, 09:54 PM
Some good quality images of the item may help people to compare it to a genuine one, so we know what to look for.

Loup Garou
23rd February 2016, 10:00 PM
Some good quality images of the item may help people to compare it to a genuine one, so we know what to look for. I can ask Tom tomorrow but he told me this afternoon that he has initiated a return with E-bay and so might have packed it for the purpose. He showed the lens to me and while I am no expert, the bayonet mount for the hood did seem to have a lot of play. I know that it is one of those "Kit lens in whitebox" jobs from one of the several London based dealers (probably operating from the same warehouse under different names).

AMc
24th February 2016, 12:24 PM
I would wait for the refund. Any problems go through eBay/PayPal.

If you're friend is suspicious then report it to Panasonic - I know from other industries that the manufacturer is usually very keen to crack down on counterfeit goods and they have more sway with the police to investigate than a single customer.

xp1
24th February 2016, 12:35 PM
I have had the misfortune to buy fake goods from Ebay twice and in both cases they were closed down after I reported the items were fake. So I would suggest your friend contacts Ebay and makes them aware of the problem and also as mentioned by AMc inform the manufacturer.

shotokan101
24th February 2016, 01:01 PM
I think I'd want more evidence of fake goods TBH before risking getting a valid trader ruined ?

Jim

Loup Garou
24th February 2016, 01:41 PM
Thanks all. My friend Tomas (who is Polish and speaks little English) has had his return request accepted and is going to send back the item.

I did speak to Panasonic this morning. They said that such defects (excessive play with the extending lens tube etc) should NOT be there in a valid Panasonic item. They took their time to check and called back. I did not name any specific trader to them but they acknowledge the possibility that fake items might be about. If you check on E-bay, all cheap 'new' "Panasonic" (and maybe other brands) are sold out of London under several different seller names. But reading the adverts between the lines, you can clearly see the same type of error strewn English making one assume that they must all be coming from the same warehouse. They always are sold in a "Whitebox" or "Yellowbox" claiming that they were part of a Panasonic kit and hence no original box.

I only saw the lens briefly but it certainly felt rather tacky in build and not up to Panasonic's usual high standards. We weighed it and with the caps on it was 124g. The official weight is 135g.

bredman
24th February 2016, 02:44 PM
I only saw the lens briefly but it certainly felt rather tacky in build and not up to Panasonic's usual high standards. We weighed it and with the caps on it was 124g. The official weight is 135g.

I assume you mentioned the weight disparity to Panasonic. What did they say about it?

shotokan101
24th February 2016, 02:56 PM
Yes 11g difference could be an old product/revision spec.

Loup Garou
24th February 2016, 02:58 PM
I assume you mentioned the weight disparity to Panasonic. What did they say about it? I did. The person talking to me sounded like a youngster but she told me that the supervisor had asked her for details. She took down all the information in detail, including the weight discrepancy and promised to pass it on to the supervisor. She carefully repeated all the details afterwards to cross check that they were right and certainly appeared to be taking it seriously. But she did not make any specific comment.

It should be easy for anyone to check this on E-bay and draw their own conclusions. I personally would not buy from dodgy sounding dealers, including non-mainliners who sell openly on line. I prefer to deal with the likes of Wex, Park, Great Western and such.

Ian
24th February 2016, 03:18 PM
It's amazing what can be faked these days - my daughter has just bought a Samsung Galaxy Note 3 smnartphone and when helping her by researching it I found several YouTube videos actually offering a quide to how to tell a genuine one from a fake one - even to the point of suggesting a fake one at the right price might even be a reasonable buy if you weren't concerned about the difference in specification. Fake lenses and cameras, that's another matter of course, but if the phone works then I suppose it has a price worth paying.

Ian

Loup Garou
24th February 2016, 03:31 PM
The Panasonic 35-100mm is not something I had looked at before because I already have Olympus lenses covering that range...14-42mm & 40-150mm...but following Tom's fiasco I looked at the web prices. The lowest price offered by a "straight" dealer is 259 by Fotosense. Those out of that London location are being sold at less than half that price and it does sound very odd.

Ian, I have heard from relatives in India that there is quite a market for fake Samsung Galaxys there. I have actually seen people admit that their Rolex watches were fake, bought for around 100 in Singapore.

Homer Simpson
27th February 2016, 07:28 PM
How much!
Going rate for fake rolexes is a fiver.:cool:
I have several, from looking the only way to see they are fakes is the sweep on the second hand.
Everyone knows they are fakes cos they know I could not afford the real thing, but for no other reason.
Fair game if you ask me as they tell the time just as well as a real un.

Cameras now that's another matter, but e bay where nearly everything is bent these days and at half price......... Don't alarm bells ring????

Loup Garou
27th February 2016, 08:06 PM
Cameras now that's another matter, but e bay where nearly everything is bent these days and at half price......... Don't alarm bells ring???? That's the problem. Whenever something is we want is available at half price as elsewhere, there is the natural temptation. Personally, I do not mind buying non-precision accessories like lens hoods, lens cases etc from the Bay - if they work, that would be enough. But precision optics and electronic goods are another matter as you say.

I saw the lens that Tom returned (and received a refund) and the build quality was quite obviously below Panasonic's usual high standards. As his English is limited, I composed a post-refund response to the seller; they responded immediately by insisting that it was a genuine product but might have been damaged in transit. They had no explanation as to how their lens was 11 grams lighter than the official weight with both lens caps on.