The story of Photographer who’s upset with Sony’s customer support

Aug 20, 2016

Udi Tirosh

Udi Tirosh is an entrepreneur, photography inventor, journalist, educator, and writer based in Israel. With over 25 years of experience in the photo-video industry, Udi has built and sold several photography-related brands. Udi has a double degree in mass media communications and computer science.

The story of Photographer who’s upset with Sony’s customer support

Aug 20, 2016

Udi Tirosh

Udi Tirosh is an entrepreneur, photography inventor, journalist, educator, and writer based in Israel. With over 25 years of experience in the photo-video industry, Udi has built and sold several photography-related brands. Udi has a double degree in mass media communications and computer science.

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amir -zakeri_01

Every story has two sides. Here is one side of one story. This story is about Amir Zakeri and his Sony A7SII. Amir uploaded a video to YouTube where he is complaining about how Sony’s treating him (and his camera). Here is the story according to Amir:

According to Amir, he bought a Sony A7Sii from B&H as soon as it was available (as so many of us) – this would be around November, 2015. a couple of months ago the camera stopped working. Amir tell that every time that he hit record, the camera would freeze. A rough calculation shows that Amir had used the camera for less than a year.

However, in a chat with Sony they said that it looked like a manufacturing issue, so if he sent it in, they would have a look. Amir indeed sent the camera and said that it was sent to PCVR, Sony’s 3rd party who handles repairs. The camera was send back and forward a few times (watch the video) with a final decision from sony that it will not be handled due to corrosion damage.

As a proof to the damage they sent this photo, showing the 6 bottom screws being corroded.

amir -zakeri_02

After some mails and phone calls and more communications, Sony told Amir that they will not fix the camera, and shipped it back.

Amir thinks that the camera was actually never opened and inspected, and that Sony (or PCVR) are just using the corroded screws as an excuse.

If this story is right, it really pains me to think that this is Sony’s customer service.

We contacted Sony for a response and will update once we hear from them. Till then,  you can watch Amir’s story below.

https://youtu.be/8V5dyFJzV8g

Sadly this is not the first report on sony that we heard.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=apCc5JD4PYs

[Amir Zakeri via Reddit]

UPDATE: a previous version of the article miscalculated the date. they are ok now.

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Udi Tirosh

Udi Tirosh

Udi Tirosh is an entrepreneur, photography inventor, journalist, educator, and writer based in Israel. With over 25 years of experience in the photo-video industry, Udi has built and sold several photography-related brands. Udi has a double degree in mass media communications and computer science.

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10 responses to “The story of Photographer who’s upset with Sony’s customer support”

  1. Jeffrey B George Avatar
    Jeffrey B George

    Sounds like Nikon support, drove to their repair center 4 times (40+ miles away), with a list in hand of the issues on my camera. They threw out the repair list every time and would only fix one item at a time that they happened to see upon inspection. My camera WAS under warranty. I ended up getting a replacement camera, but sold it and bought another brand. For the last decade I’ve been only using Canon, love their equipment and especially their support.

  2. Jeffrey B George Avatar
    Jeffrey B George

    Sounds like Nikon support, drove to their repair center 4 times (40+ miles away), with a list in hand of the issues on my camera. They threw out the repair list every time and would only fix one item at a time that they happened to see upon inspection. My camera WAS under warranty. I ended up getting a replacement camera, but sold it and bought another brand. For the last decade I’ve been only using Canon, love their equipment and especially their support.

  3. MiamiC70 Avatar
    MiamiC70

    Sony customer service has always sucked why is this a surprise?

    1. Klaus Noergaard Avatar
      Klaus Noergaard

      Who says it’s a surprise? Articles and videos about Sonys’ poor service is important for a as many to see, so they will change their policy about repairing faulty camera’s. If they sell less cameras and hurt financely because of this then Sony must change its service. Camera shops will also stop selling them because they probably don’t want to be in the middle of this because they will lose money too.

  4. Shannon Avatar
    Shannon

    You definitely want to file a claim with the Better Business Bureau. This will give them a little more motivation to repair the camera. You could also send it to a third party camera repair shop yourself to get verification of no corrosion internally and of the actual issue. At which point Sony should pay for the repair and any cost associated with sending it to this third party company. Make sure the third party company documents the opening of the camera and the internals through video.

    Shannon

  5. Mike Avatar
    Mike

    I have a Sony a99 and a77, but my sony days started with the a700 and when my cameras had issues I dealt directly with sony and they were amazing. This was when sony had their own stores in Canada. Their customer service was great from loaning me free cameras when my cameras were in repair for warranty, to fixing a lot of issues that I thought would totally be sent back as physical damage. However once they closed their stores and switch to a 3rd party repair, that all changed. I wasn’t dealing with a business that cared or valued my loyalty, I was dealing with a business that was working for Sony and they cared about their bottom line. Thankfully my cameras have been working since (and warranty is finally gone) but when and if I get another Sony product I will remember that their warranty and customer service will not be as good as it once was.

  6. Wing Wong Avatar
    Wing Wong

    Corrosion on external screws, is not proof of water damage. If it was, then all of the weather sealed cameras are SOL.

  7. Steven Avatar
    Steven

    It’s not just Sony, it’s large electronics manufacturers in general. I had a similar experience with LG Electronics over their outright refusal to honour a warranty on a 5-month old 27EA83 wide-gamut monitor which cost £600, after it developed a cluster of stuck pixels in the centre. They collected it, kept it for a month, sent it back covered in smears, fingerprints and cleaning solution residue, with a service note which referred to a 50″ plasma TV rather than the correct model, which simply stated “item within spec”.

    After I questioned this, they requested I send them clear photos of the issue. Yes, an electronics manufacturer asked me to take photos of PIXELS. Despite the inherent ridiculousness of this request I complied, and was amused to receive a response claiming that engineers had managed to discern from the photo (which I took with my phone’s 8MP camera from 30cm away) that there was only one stuck subpixel which was within spec. Hilarious!

    After escalating this to a formal complaint, I was phoned by a robotic-sounding young man who said, quote unquote, “these things happen”, and reiterated that LG would not replace or repair the item, failed to apologise for the poor manhandling of the item or the time it was kept, or the erroneous service note, or the dire quality of the service in general, but offered, “as a goodwill gesture”, to extend the warranty of the item by a further 30 days. The same warranty they were refusing to honour.

    Once I finally managed to lay hands on the stubbornly-hidden tolerance levels for pixel faults, I discovered that LG allowed for up to 12 dead sub-pixels (so 4 dead pixels in total), or immediate replacement if two consecutive, touching pixels were dead. Once I escalated the complaint AGAIN and pointed out that the item failed on both counts, I was again treated to the nonsense that their “engineers” could tell from the photos that there weren’t two dead pixels touching and that the number of dead sub-pixels was “within spec”.

    After nearly two months of this pointless back and forth, the retailer fortunately stepped in and took care of it. I was offered an exchange, and they were understanding enough to allow me to take the Viewsonic equivalent instead (which is perfect). LG though? Never buying from them again.

  8. Spica Avatar
    Spica

    How could Amir have used the camera for about a year and a half if he only ordered it less than a year ago (Nov 2015 according to the article)?

  9. Patrick Shipstad Avatar
    Patrick Shipstad

    I’ve heard of this several times about Sony.. horrible, defensive customer service that takes months of going back and forth with no resolve to the customer. I sure hope my Sony gear never needs fixing. That is inexcusable and the Sony users need to continue to make these incidences public knowledge until they can support their customers who support them. I’ve had issues with Fuji repair in the past as well (sending the cameras to their New Jersey US repair shop and it coming back with problems I didn’t send it in for). The only repair service that I think it awesome is Canon. I’ve always had fantastic service from them. Anyway, shame on Sony.