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  1. #1
    Adventure & Discovery Redgum's Avatar
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    Question eBay Experience

    As eBay becomes cluttered and open to opportunists what experiences can you pass onto AP members that may make it easier/safer for them to buy or sell photographic equipment on eBay? Have you had any bad/good experiences (first hand) and how did they effect your sale/purchase?
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  2. #2
    It's all about the Light!
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    An excellent thread. I've stuck it.

    I've bought a few things from eBay. The most expensive being a lens.
    I've stuck with high +ve feedback sellers with no problems.
    regards, Kym Honest & Direct Constructive Critique Appreciated! ©
    Digital & film, Bits of glass covering 10mm to 500mm, and other stuff



  3. #3
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    Bought a lot of small items from ebay using Paypal, sold lenses and camera which I knew were in good condition and buyers were happy, myself, wouldn't buy 2nd lenses advertised by private sellers.
    My son, however, has bought computer parts and was misled about the condition of an expensive part, however after some argy bargy the buyer eventually refunded his money.
    Cheers,
    Trish
    Canon 5D11 - various lenses, mostly primes.

  4. #4
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    I've had no bad experiences on ebay.
    My most expensive was a second hand Nikon lens which I still have. As Kym said, check the seller's past transactions before you commit to buy.

    An honest C+C please!


    "I started life with nothing and I still have most of it left"

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  5. #5
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    I raised this because whilst selling my Nikon D300 and kit I had three scammers (trying to get user names and passwords) over two days and finally two non-existent successful bidders. eBay refunded all the fees but one could have been caught if not wary. (Like sending bank details to successful bidders that aren't genuine).

  6. #6
    Ausphotography Regular swifty's Avatar
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    I've only used it a few times and am very wary and cautious when looking to buy.
    I generally trust the shops that have hundreds or thousands of good ratings but for individuals, I try to steer clear unless there are information on the ad about the person, in which case I try to check that person out. If everything seems legit, then I would bid.
    I havn't sold anything off ebay however. I always try gumtree.com.au or here first. And so far I've been successful so no need to use ebay.
    Nikon FX + m43

  7. #7
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    I've bought heaps of gear of eBay for years and only ever had one issue which is when I was caught out trying to buy a non-existent 7D. That story is in this thread.

    You have to be so careful and buy with your head, not the impulse.
    Mic

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  8. #8
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    I buy and sell quite a lot on ebay as a trader. I find if you are genuine in your advertisments you will attract a lot of genuine buyers. Be wary accepting personal cheques as a form of payment and also of local pickups. If someone watches what you sell and you offer that as an option it is a very easy way to find where you live and suss your place out. If its a local buyer I try and arrange to meet at the local shops or somewhere like that. Paypal is definately the safest way to pay and buy but you are slugged a few fees. I also have a special "ebay" bank account set up so if someone can get into my account and take money its not the end of the world as it always has a low balance. In my 3 or 4 years I have had one product turn up damaged but that was Aus Posts fault and covered by insurance, and bad feedback left from one buyer who wasn't happy with his product. Ebay have always been great in their customer service also I have found.
    Critique and comments welcomed on my images!

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  9. #9
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    I use E/bay a lot both to sell and buy and to date had only one bad deal , the item did not arrive, which was refunded by P/pal.
    I buy on the US UK and Canadian sites , sticking to people with good feed back and have got some very good deals.
    Best deal was a $100 lens that I picked up for $25 landed because it was incorrectly listed.
    I pay only by Paypal and insist on registered mail or signed courier for items I buy .When selling I restrict my sales to Australia only and registered mail.
    Read the buyers/sellers feed back and ask questions .
    I'm Garry . Pentax K5 IIs + Kx, and a bag full of other gear.
    Critique is welcome as is PP with details.

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  10. #10
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    You have to have your wits about you when using eBay. There is good value to be had, but equally there are many traps to fall into. Some thoughts / experiences:

    - always use Paypal. I've previously lodged a successful claim with Paypal in respect of a lens that had fungus. Got a full refund. I think Paypal cover up to $1000, but only one or two (?) claims in any calendar year. Also be sure to always ask explicitly if a lens has fungus or scratches or anything else wrong with it, if not already stated in the listing; that way you have a more clear cut case if the product does turn out to be less than perfect.

    - only buy from sellers who have a substantial positive track record. Ideally 100+ with 100% positive feedback for private sellers, and 1000+ with >99% positive feedback from traders.

    - beware of zero feedback sellers with a high priced item for sale at a low price... they're almost certainly scammers... for example this Canon 1D4 with a "buy it now" price of $985 that sold yesterday... I hope the buyer is located in Darwin and will go to pick the item up in person for cash; wouldn't fancy his chances of receiving the item by mail...

    - don't buy memory cards off eBay - go to "cheap as chips" (AP sponsor) instead. I bought a Sandisk CF Ultra III card off eBay at a great price... realised it was fake when the performance wasn't up to scratch. I eventually got my money back from the seller. The card was a beautiful copy - I showed it to various AP members at a meet-up, alongside a genuine card, and more people picked the real card as the fake... There's guides on eBay on how to pick fakes, but better just stick to cheap as chips.

    My overall guidance would be the old "if its too good to be true, it probably is". But overall, although I've had some close shaves, I've never ended up out of pocket through using eBay (I've sold / bought around 100 items over the years, including maybe 10 camera items). The existence of eBay is, overall, a great thing as far as I'm concerned: it gives the used camera gear market "liquidity". But buyer beware.
    Richard
    Canon 5D2 | 24-105 f/4 L IS | 70-200 f/4 L IS | 85 f/1.2 L | TSE 17 f/4 L tilt-shift | 100 f/2.8 L IS macro | MP-E 65 f/2.8 macro | 1.4x | 580EX2 | MT-24 Twin Lite | Manfrotto | Photoshop CS5


  11. #11
    As Keen As Mustard NikonNellie's Avatar
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    I have only bought two items from EBay - one was the Yongyuo Flash unit and the other was a sensor loupe. Both purchases were payed with Paypal and I only used traders with a 99% positive feedback resulting in very smooth purchases.
    CAMERA: Nikon D800, Nikon D7000
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    Sigma 70 - 200mm f2.8 APO EX DG OS, Tamron SP 24 - 70mm f/2.8 Di VC USD, Sigma 85mm F/1.4 EX DG

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  12. #12
    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    I generally tend to use ebay as a price guide.

    very rarely have I bought from ebay itself, although I've bought from (once)ebayers who are local to Melbourne, I've contacted them in some way and bought direct form them handing over real cash in person... remember that kind of thing?

    I do deal with a few well respected genuine ebayers(usually for cheap accessories), and have had good experiences in all my purchases to date, so with my OCD requirement to maintain an impeccable record.... I use it sparingly

    I like to check prices, so will have as many watches on a particular item to understand what other people are willing to pay for it(inherent value, rather than expected value).. and then I keep an eye out for a similar item in various retail outlets I frequent(Camera Exchange is a frequent window shopping experience for me ) or via Photographic Trader.
    Sometimes I cave in and end up getting it off ebay, if the local prices are exorbitant.
    Nikon D800E, D300, D70s
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    {Tamron}; -> 17-50/2.8 : 28-75/2.8 : 70-200/2.8 : 300/2.8 SP MF : 24-70/2.8VC


  13. #13
    Ausphotography Veteran rwg717's Avatar
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    I use eBay a bit and usually only to buy small items, but I avoid the "little" sellers....but ones with the big stars are usually good, especially if they are offering free postage. I would be very wary of camera bodies and expensive lenses....very risky stuff
    Richard
    I've been wrong before!! Happy to have constructive criticism though.Gear used Canon 50D, 7D & 5DMkII plus expensive things hanging off their fronts and of course a "nifty fifty".

  14. #14
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    Has anyone encountered mid-sale offers? Where a prospective buyer will offer to do a deal now before the auction closes? For much less of course.

  15. #15
    Way Down Yonder in the Paw Paw Patch jim's Avatar
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    I've bought a heck of a lot of stuff on eBay. The only disappointing experience was what turned out to be a Chinese forgery of Photoshop.

    Immaculate forgery, the only tip off was that it worked perfectly right off the bat without any complicated registration rigmarole.

    Vendor provided a full refund without argument.
    All constructive criticism accepted with gratitude.


  16. #16
    Ausphotography Regular
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    Quote Originally Posted by Redgum View Post
    Has anyone encountered mid-sale offers? Where a prospective buyer will offer to do a deal now before the auction closes? For much less of course.
    Yep, regularly. Particularly prevalent with photographic gear, where there is a relatively large market volume and clear market value for popular goods. If you offered say a 40D, almost bound to get some people asking if you'll do a "buy it now" for say $50 less than the auction is currently at, but lots less than the item would normally go for. For items I'm selling, I'll either state "offers to end auction early will be ignored" or answer as such to an incoming question and make the answer visible to be seen in the listing.

    I've also had people offer to do a deal "off line", ie outside of eBay, usually on the grounds of saving fees. Would never do this - at least with eBay and Paypal there is some regulation and protection.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by rwg717 View Post
    I use eBay a bit and usually only to buy small items, but I avoid the "little" sellers....but ones with the big stars are usually good, especially if they are offering free postage. I would be very wary of camera bodies and expensive lenses....very risky stuff
    Richard
    I have bought and sold quite a bit on eBay. I generally find the littlish sellers with around 20-2000 feedback the best, they understand the system and are building their reputation so work to impress. The huge auction house type sellers that sell anything and everything are generally the worst : slow to post and unlikely to help if something goes wrong. Feedback is important, above 99% is usually OK adn 99.5% excellent though it pays to read the negatives and neutrals.

    I'm fussier again with overseas sellers as the logistics are so much harder and more expensive if something has to be returned. Where possible I buy in Oz.

    I will also buy from newbies... but only low value items.

  18. #18
    keen learner of new tricks. old dog's Avatar
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    I`ve bought a few lenses and neck strap, ext tubes etc and all has gone smoothly. A couple of weeks ago there was a D300 (new) offered close to home. I asked to see it and was basically refused. Could have had it for $900, brand new, so the person said. But it had to be shipped....why I said....I declined to proceed any further. Just this week, similar add, in the next suburb. What a coincidence......beware.
    Graeme
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    Nikon: D7000, D80, 12-24 f4, 17-55 f2.8, 18-135, 70-300VR, 35f2, SB 400, SB 600, TC-201 2x converter. Tamron: 90 macro 2.8 Kenko ext. tubes. Photoshop CS2.


  19. #19
    In Learning M_o_d_e
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    I had been using ebay for years without any hassles, always check on peoples feedback before i deal with them and everything was going fine until THIS experience where my account details were stolen.

    Still to this day i have no idea how it happened as i am super carefull, i still use ebay, but very sparingly and i doubt i will ever feel safe on there again.
    Julie

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  20. #20
    Ausphotography Veteran Speedway's Avatar
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    I have been using ebay for a number of years now and never had a problem. I try to use power sellers where possible or sellers with a large 100% positive feedback. I wouldn't use gumtree in a fit as I have personally seen obvious scams reported to them with no action from them other a couple that were removed only to be put straight back on under a slightly changed name.
    Keith.
    Keith

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