Canon Customer Service

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My G11 has been a regular companion at concerts and other places.  It’s a digital compact camera, but one which offers as much DSLR control options as can be fit onto a smaller body... without being buried in layers of electronics controls.  Good fit, fast access to controls, pocketability.  It’s delivered great pictures in good lighting, and good pictures in challenging concert lighting.  It’s a familiar friend.

I’ve noticed for some time that I had a scratch on the lens, with no idea how it might have gotten scratched.  When off, there’s a lens cover that automatically retracts.  When open the lens is fairly well recessed within the lens body.   Recently, though, the scratch interfered with a shot, and, upon examination, the scratch looked slightly larger.

Buying a new camera is, of course, tempting.  The Canon G1x has a sensor size that starts one in “thinking man” pose before moving on to “drooling man” chagrin.  Or, perhaps one of those spiffy mirrorless cameras...   But... whereas the mind is willing, the checking account is not. 

Well, then, how much would it cost to get ol’ trusty repaired?  Check Canon’s website...  $150.

That’s Canon’s flat fee for whatever ails a G-11.  This is a camera over two years old, which, in camera terms, doesn’t make it as much of a relic as it would with most other forms of modern electronics.   Camera evolution, I’ve found, is a slow process. 

All things considered, a repair is the sensible thing to do.  So, I entered the credit card information, and was duly notified that I would get my camera back within a week of their receipt.  Speedy, in my reckoning.   They also reserve the right to change the price, make use of used parts, or to send me an entirely different camera in return.


That’s “okay!” in the “maybe they’ll be out of G-11 bits and pieces and send me a slightly less aged G-12.”

I shipped last Friday, and received a confirmation email that they had received it on Monday.  Also on Monday, they altered the repair agreement, which might be unsettling.  However... they dropped the $150 altogether.  Yep, a free repair, for a camera that is out of the warranty period.

I’ll admit that I had hoped for us much.  A Google search and a few clicks indicated that some other camera owners had similar problems, in that the scratches were caused by the retractable lens cover having too tight a tolerance to the lens surface.  It scratched itself.

Still, there’s been no mention of Canon repairing it for free, and for a mega-company to have my agreement to bill me $150 and choose not to do so... is worthy of a blog post.

Today, I received ol’ trusty in the mail, with a new lens body, exactly one week from the date I shipped it.  That’s three days early for those who are counting.   I’m “out” postage and insurance, which totaled around $10.  That’s a bargain.

Kudos to Canon!

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