Cameras forum

General discussion

Trustworthy dealers

by a4phantom / March 14, 2005 6:58 AM PST

I'm told taht A&M Photo really really sucks. So who's good? Butterfly Photo and Abes of Maine keep coming up with low prices and high user ratings . . . any experiences with them? Anyone else notably good or bad?

Post a reply
Discussion is locked
You are posting a reply to: Trustworthy dealers
The posting of advertisements, profanity, or personal attacks is prohibited. Please refer to our CNET Forums policies for details. All submitted content is subject to our Terms of Use.
Track this discussion and email me when there are updates

If you're asking for technical help, please be sure to include all your system info, including operating system, model number, and any other specifics related to the problem. Also please exercise your best judgment when posting in the forums--revealing personal information such as your e-mail address, telephone number, and address is not recommended.

You are reporting the following post: Trustworthy dealers
This post has been flagged and will be reviewed by our staff. Thank you for helping us maintain CNET's great community.
Sorry, there was a problem flagging this post. Please try again now or at a later time.
If you believe this post is offensive or violates the CNET Forums' Usage policies, you can report it below (this will not automatically remove the post). Once reported, our moderators will be notified and the post will be reviewed.
Collapse -
by snapshot2 Forum moderator / March 14, 2005 7:34 AM PST
In reply to: Trustworthy dealers

Here are three others that often have nice prices on some items.

I have not heard anything bad about them:

B&H Photo-Video
Beach Camera

You may want to also check prices on:


Collapse -
Amazon is a fantastic company but high prices on electronics
by a4phantom / March 14, 2005 8:08 AM PST
In reply to: Dealers

Amazon is a fantastic company but they seem to generally have high prices on electronics.

Collapse -
Amazon currently has the lowest price for.....
by hh / March 14, 2005 11:10 AM PST

Casio Exilim EX-Z55. Free shipping too. You have to check them periodically as sometimes they have the lowest prices and sometimes not.

Collapse -
I love

I usually find a good price on item I wanted. I like the return policy, hassle free. Too bad that they didn't offer to send to APO add. for digital cameras.

Collapse -
(NT) (NT) I've had very postitive experiences with B&H.
by Kiddpeat / March 14, 2005 10:13 AM PST
In reply to: Dealers
Collapse -
by stoko42 / April 23, 2005 4:23 PM PDT
In reply to: Dealers

This is a european company. Very good prices, updated daily. Fast delivery, you can even track your parcel via their website. Offer the Zen engagement for a small fee anything goes wrong with your camera in the first twelve months they will give you the full value to spend on another camera of your choice on their site.

Collapse -
Do not buy anything from these people!
by KayDenmark / November 14, 2005 8:22 PM PST
In reply to:

Pixmania was the worst online shopping experience I have ever had. They lied about having a camera in stock, and when I cancelled my order, they billed my credit card anyway. Then they sent me the (empty) case for the camera, which I had to pay postage on in both directions. A real nightmare! Also, their online tracking service does not work, emails are not answered, and getting a service rep on the phone requires at least twenty minutes of waiting. Avoid, avoid, avoid!

Collapse -
Butterfly Photo...
by joerf3 / March 18, 2005 12:27 AM PST
In reply to: Trustworthy dealers

I recently purchased a Minolta Z3 from Butterfly Photo who did have the lowest price w/ a good rating from CNET.

They do send out an email after you place your order to contact them as there might be a problem with your order. This is how they "unleash" their salespeople on you to try to sell you more stuff. I did call and they did try to up-sell me on a few items like a flash card, addtional lenses and a warranty. I did take the larger flash card (as it was a good deal). He did offer a wide angle lens which I did want but the price was too high. After saying "no" a few times, he kept lowering the price until I finally agreed. He was very corteous and not overly pushy.

I did receive my camera when promised (in new, perfect condition) along with the flash card and the wide angle lens. The quality of the wide angle lens was not what I expected (junky) so I immediately called for an RMA number which I was provided with with no hassles.

I received an email message from them when they received my returned item which stated it would take up to 14 business days for my refund to come through. I think it posted to my account 10 business days later - full refund w/ no restocking fees.

This was my first experience with Butterfly Photo and I think I would buy from them again.

Collapse -
Butterfly Photo
by Tom B. / April 22, 2005 12:48 AM PDT
In reply to: Butterfly Photo...

I had the exact experience with the salemen. He was pushy but I thought nice. He tried to sell me additional items and every time I said no he lowered the price or threw something else in. Some items I bought including a spare battery but by the time I got around to using it it was no good. Got my Cannon G-3 pretty quick, brand new and in good condition. I would buy from them again but I would be ready for the salesman and push back for something additional I might want, it would be fun. As I said he was nice and I would be too. Thanks for the tip on quality that is a good thing to watch out for.

Collapse -
Butterfly photo False Advertisement and Terrible Service
by truth333 / April 20, 2005 6:30 AM PDT
In reply to: Trustworthy dealers

Ordered a camera that they listed as having in stock. After waiting 2 weeks, and never receiving the camera or hearing anything from them, I decided to call them.

Turns out they never had the camera in stock and had to order it from somewhere else which would take another 5 days.

This delay was not reflected in my online account nor did they have the decency to call me and tell me there would be a delay.

Of course, they did find the time to call me, immediately after placing my order, to try and sell me additional accessories for the camera.

They may advertise a low price but beware, they are misleading and service is terrible. They will charge your card immediately, even before shipping, and then you are on your own.

Collapse -
Butterfly photo False Advertisement and Terrible Service
by StevenC / April 20, 2005 6:48 AM PDT
Collapse -
Newegg free 256 SD card with Canon offer
by a4phantom / April 20, 2005 10:42 AM PDT

Very nice, if they're still doing that when I have money to buy my dad an A510, they've got my business. Thanks for posting it.

Collapse -
Butterfly is horrible
by stoak1919 / October 6, 2010 4:13 PM PDT

I still have not received a camera I ordered for my daughters birthday (which came and went). Paid for second day air over a week before her birthday. They sent me an email to confirm my order and I have not received anything from them since. It is impossible to log into their site to track orders and they do not reply to emails. I would be happy to pay more for better service and butterfly will not get my business ever again. Amazon may be more expensive but they seem to have good service (I would have used them but they were honest and posted the camera would probably not arrive in time). I have used Abe's a couple of times and they seemed fine as well.

I use to work at an internet company and if the laws have not changed it is illegal to charge your card before shipping.

Collapse -
Abes of Maine
by leej009 / April 21, 2005 8:38 AM PDT
In reply to: Trustworthy dealers

i just ordered a nikon D70 from abes of maine. my first order from them...i was quite impressed and happy with them...i submitted my order with them online and in the same day i received a phone call to confirm my order, it was shipped the same day.

my only gripe would be that when they called they kept trying to sell me something long as you can say no a few times it's fine.

Collapse -
good experiences with abe's of maine
by moonglough / April 22, 2005 8:32 AM PDT
In reply to: Abes of Maine

i was really happy with my experiences with abe's of maine; they had the lowest price and fast service. but i did get suckered into buying an "extra" which was a camera case that was too small and overpriced!

Collapse -
bad service
by JGumm / May 6, 2005 2:07 AM PDT
In reply to: Abes of Maine

I ordered a Minolta Z3 from them last week. A rep called me the next day and soft-pedaled a camera case (price was good, so I bit), and said my camera would be sent that evening or the following day. They charged my credit card that day, so I believed him.

A week later, no camera, so I called to check on my order. "It's in shipping" so should be sent soon. Okay, next day I check my order status on their web site, still no tracking number, so I called again. This time the story is it's on back order. I checked their web site as if I'm ordering all over again, and it says it's available and NOT on backorder.

Lies and more lies. I will not order from them again.

Collapse -
(NT) (NT) Report them to BBB for violations of ethical biz practi
by hh / May 6, 2005 3:01 AM PDT
In reply to: bad service
Collapse -
Norman's Camera of Kalamazoo, MI is excellent
by merryoboe / April 21, 2005 9:34 PM PDT
In reply to: Trustworthy dealers

I have purchased many camera items from Norman's Camera
and been very pleased with both prices and service. I would probably buy from them if their prices weren't so good ... fortunately that isn't the case.

I only live an hour from Kalamazoo, so besides buying by mail-order, I have also visited their large, well-stocked shop and spoken with their experienced salespeople.

I have had to order "hot" items and wait for them, and in those cases they were proactive about informing me of availability and shipping date. When I am spending in excess of $1,000 on a body or lens, I like knowing that I am not just getting a good price, but also getting legit goods backed by a warranty and trustworthy people. You will find that at Norman's.

Collapse -
Butterfly Photo
by moerose / April 21, 2005 10:00 PM PDT
In reply to: Trustworthy dealers

I ordered a Minolta Z3 camera also thru Butterfly Photo. I agree with the other postings that they do try to sell you additional items, but they weren't pushy. I was pleased with the service and had no problems.

Collapse -
by GJMG / April 21, 2005 10:02 PM PDT
In reply to: Trustworthy dealers

I just recently ordered a Fuji FinePixE550 Digi Cam online from H1Photo. It was delivered in just 2 days. Of course I live in Maryland and they are in Pennsylvannia, but you know it could have been longer. It was an excellent price and the packaging was great. So far the camera is the only thing I have ordered from them, but I will try them again.

Collapse -
B&H Photo + MPSuperStore + FocusCamera + RitzCamera
by orangehead911 / April 22, 2005 1:58 AM PDT
In reply to: Trustworthy dealers

I have had really good experiences with all the above dealers.

B&H Photo is a no-frills, no chit-chat dealer who delivers on time, without any hassles. Also, they're authorized dealers for all the brands they carry, something which is not true for all online dealers. Great website too!

MPSuperStore sometimes have the best price of any online dealer (save the bait-and-switch shops) out there. Their website REALLY needs some work though. Bought my latest camera, a Canon EOS 20D, from them.

FocusCamera is a family run business and have pretty good prices. Run-of-the-mill site.

RitzCamera (WolfCamera) is a great place to shop if an item is brand new, and perhaps not mass market. I bought a Nikon Super CoolScan 5000 ED, due to NO sales tax and FREE shipping. Prices for that scanner at the time was on or above MSRP on ALL online dealers offering the product.

Dealers to stay away from: any dealer who is advertising a price which is 20% or more lower compared to other reputable dealers.

Collapse - great experience
by rentman / April 22, 2005 2:28 AM PDT
In reply to: Trustworthy dealers

I had a great experience with Very low price & fast shipping on my Fuji F440

Collapse -
You were LUCKY then on buydig!
by nothappyatall / June 16, 2005 11:59 AM PDT

If you go to their web site and actually read their user agreement/policy statement, they come off sounding like a bunch of paranoids that will cancel your order for any reason they feel like. Their web site goes into details about how if they feel you are a dealer, retailer or wanting to buy to resell they will cancel you!

That happened to me yesterday buying a printer for my house, credit card was approved, rec'd the confirmation email and all that. Then today I get a form email simply stating "Your order has been cancelled per-

Order cancellation from
Dear Customer,
The following order has been cancelled, WC1111932

The original confirmation in part:

---------- Order #WC1111932 Confirmation
Thank you <snip> for ordering from

We hope you enjoy your new purchase.

Your account number is <snip>.com

Your order number is WC1111932

This email is to confirm the receipt of your order.

Please note, there is no need to re-send your request or call our customer service department for status or tracking number,
this will only delay our response time to you.

We appreciate your understanding and patience and do value your business.
Once Your Order Has Processed and shipped a FEDEX Tracking Number Will Be Automatically Emailed To The Address Provided.
To insure the best handling of your order please allow 48-72 hours for the processing and the shipping of your order.

Thank You for your cooperation, Customer Service.


First, it takes them 48-72 hours just to PROCESS an order??

Go read their BS policies they require just to buy something from them:

In part it says this:

We do not sell to other dealers, resellers, exporters, wholesalers, or customers who intend on reselling the product offered by World Wide Direct/ If you are one of the above please don't bother to order online or call in, for your order will be rejected.

Nice attitude huh? "don't BOTHER"? what kind of business attitude is that?
I'm no dealer, retailer or any of that

Read on a bit to this puzzler:

"All orders are limited to one item per customer (example, you cannot order 2 or more of the same item or 1 camera and 1 camcorder). However, we reserve the right to approve special orders for larger quantities)"


"The Order Confirmation Does Not Constitute a final Offer or Contract. All Orders Are Subject To Management Review and Approval and If Found To Be Invalid Due To Any Reason, Are Subject To Cancellation By Management."

They will also hold checks and money orders for THREE WEEKS:

"All personal checks, money orders Or bank checks will be held for approximately 3 weeks."

Also, if you buy something and open the BOX, you can't return it, according to this:

"All TVs, DVD players, Scanners, Fax Machines, Printers, Receivers, and Home Theaters are not returnable after box is opened. All inquiries to manufacturer. Thank you"

And last but not least, when you order and have to create an account with email to do so, they require you to accent their spam:

"Members agree to receive email messages from Once in a while we like to update our registered customers about a special promotion we are running."

So there you have it, probably the worst company I ever ran into in buying computer related items. I went instead to and the price on the same Canon printer was $6 and change CHEAPER than buydig, my card was confirmed and today I rec'ed a notice that the order was processed and going by Fedexx, which I might add Newegg only charged less than $4 for the FedEx supersaver method to ship my printer.
It not only pays to compare prices, but read reviews on companies as well as their policies on their web site BEFORE buying.

Collapse -
adorama can be right
by zekeisaac / April 22, 2005 3:41 AM PDT
In reply to: Trustworthy dealers

The folks at Adorama did right by me when I bought some new gear, and I had good photo-gear info given me by the folks at B+H, either of these co.s will be worth a look! The main thing to remember is the difference between grey-market (where the cam was built for the overseas market and may not have a USA warranty and manual or even parts or repairs availiable in US!) and USA market items! If the price quoted is substantially lower than the average retail price in all the other ads or quotes from known + respected dealers, then it is likely to be grey or even black market!

Collapse -
by marcroz / April 22, 2005 5:18 AM PDT
In reply to: Trustworthy dealers

I've purchased two digital cameras from Buydig and have been very pleased. No hard sell on accessories(actually, they never even called) and prompt delivery across country of USA warrantied products.

Have used Newegg and B&H for other types of purchases with good experiences.

Good luck

Collapse -
Excellent Experience with Buydig
by Donato777 / June 17, 2005 1:37 PM PDT
In reply to: Buydig

I recently purchased a Fujifilm Finepix F10 from buydig. They offered one of the lowest prices online and sent me an order confirmation immediately. Within two days I received my FedEx tracking number informing me that the camera had shipped. It was a very smooth, hassle-free experience all around, and I would buy from them again.

Collapse -
Now Let's Hear About the Camera
by snapshot2 Forum moderator / June 18, 2005 12:24 AM PDT

The Fujifil F10 is pretty new on the market.

People are asking about it.

Here is your chance to be a reporter.

What are your thoughts on the camera?


Collapse -
F10 Report
by Donato777 / June 19, 2005 4:34 AM PDT

OK, the camera should arrive this week via FedEx. As soon as it does and I have had some time to use it, I'll send a report in a new discussion.

Collapse -
BH Photo is fantastic
by a4phantom / April 22, 2005 11:42 AM PDT
In reply to: Trustworthy dealers

I've had a great experience with BH Photo. Low prices for a reputable dealer, quick delivery. I returned a camera (Casio Ex-Z50) because the LCD sucked, and the process was as hassle free as could be expected. I definitely recommend BH Photo, and will buy my next camera from them (after talking to someone who already has it!).

Collapse -
B & H photo video
by Jckund31 / June 18, 2005 12:02 PM PDT
In reply to: BH Photo is fantastic

I also had a great experience with B & H. The store has many items in stock and I ordered an item and put it on UPS 3-5 day and it came the next day!!!

Popular Forums
Computer Help 49,613 discussions
Computer Newbies 10,349 discussions
Laptops 19,436 discussions
Security 30,426 discussions
TVs & Home Theaters 20,308 discussions
Windows 10 360 discussions
Phones 15,802 discussions
Windows 7 7,351 discussions
Networking & Wireless 14,641 discussions


CNET bought a house!

Take a look inside the house where we will be testing connected locks, thermostats and other smart home products so we can tell a complete story.