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Entry Level DSLR

Discussion in 'General Equipment Chat & Advice' started by Louise7, Sep 27, 2018.

  1. EightBitTony

    EightBitTony Well-Known Member

    I was in LCE in Nottingham at the weekend looking at bags, and listening to a sales assistant trying very hard to upsell a lady who was asking for one thing, and being strongly encouraged to spend more on something else.

    At worst, you can't trust anyone on the cash receiving end of a transaction because the reason they're there is to maximise profit, not to help the customer. You just have to hope that the two things align in some magic way.

    A best, you'd get the same experience in Curries. I buy cameras from Amazon, because then I don't have to talk to human beings. You can handle a camera in Curries as well as you can anywhere else (in fact, better than you can in LCE because there aren't any cameras out, you have to ask), and a few years back when I was looking for a compact camera, the assistant in Curries was helpful, knowledgeable, polite and useful. My experience in LCE is one of arrogance and indifference.

    Now, these are my personal experiences, and everyone's are different, but I wouldn't lift LCE up to some pedestal, it's entirely dependent on people (on both sides of the counter top).
  2. EightBitTony

    EightBitTony Well-Known Member

    Something you're comfortable with is absolutely worth paying for, because if you're going to use the camera a lot it has to not be annoying. It's not too much for someone getting in to photography, assuming you can afford it. I know that's a bit of a nothing statement, but the reality is it's a hobby and so you pay as much as you feel happy paying, there's no too much or too little, only what you can afford. Is there a massive difference between a £400 and £800 camera? Maybe, maybe not, but ultimately it doesn't matter. What matters is you find a camera that you enjoy using, because if you enjoy using it it'll show in the photographs. If you have to fight it, that'll show too.

    Good luck.
  3. Benchista

    Benchista Which Tyler

    I don't think I could have had more different experiences with LCE than that. I've never used the Nottingham branch, but I have bought lots of items from them in Manchester, Southampton, Salisbury, London and above all, Leamington. Oh, and at the various shows at the NEC. They have always been entirely helpful, have ordered stuff in for me to look at with no expectation of me buying, and always given me a competitive price. They are knowledgable, un-pushy and by a country mile the best camera shops in the country IMHO.
  4. EightBitTony

    EightBitTony Well-Known Member

    Indeed, but it relies on people (and the corporate expectation of them). And because it relies on people (on both sides of the counter) the experience is going to vary. That's my only point. Chester was suggesting Curries were terrible and LCE were superb, my personal experience, without any need for anyone else to share it, is as described. I don't know if the lady I heard being upsold spent the extra £400 or so they were trying to convince her to spend or not, but that wasn't a good representation of them.
  5. nimbus

    nimbus Well-Known Member

    In service terms I have actually found Currys to be very good. Some staff are fairly knowledgeable where cameras are concerned, prices there do seem to vary quite widely by comparison with others. What some camera shops will have is a wider selection of models and accessories.
    EightBitTony likes this.
  6. nimbus

    nimbus Well-Known Member

    LCE took over an independent in this area when the owner retired, it had always been a decent shop, it seems to have gone from strength to strength since the buy-out. Other than LCE in actual photographic shop terms there is really only a Jessops in a large shopping centre and another pleasant independent about fifteen miles further away. It can in city centre terms actually leave buyers with Currys (LCE are in a suburban High Street).
  7. Benchista

    Benchista Which Tyler

    I've met the MD of LCE (courtesy of AP, actually, sat next to him at lunch a few years back when I was presenting an award) - the corporate expectation is that they provide good customer service, but they give a huge amount of responsibility to the shop manager, rather than dictate too much centrally. There was a good interview with him that I've linked to before, but it doesn't appear to be available any more. However, the way they operate, your experience is likely to be very atypical. And that's my only connections with the company, for the record - a couple of hours talking, and as a long-term customer.
  8. EightBitTony

    EightBitTony Well-Known Member

    I know, I've been told that before on this forum, that my experience with LCE is atypical. I do speak to other photographers, and I'm not the only one with the view I have. It's hard not feeling like you're dismissing my experiences despite you having never shopped in the Nottingham LCE. So, maybe it's me, maybe they just feel like being arrogant with me, and maybe they were only upselling to that lady because I was withing hearing range.

    Or maybe, my experience isn't atypical, and that in fact, because shops are staffed by humans, we can both have different experiences with the same company and our sample set each is one (and anyone we talk to).

    Anyway, well off-topic, for which I apologise.
  9. Benchista

    Benchista Which Tyler

    No, I'm just questioning your apparent conclusion that Currys and LCE offer the same level of service and that because you've had poor experiences at Nottingham, that's typical of the rest. I don't disbelieve anything you've said, but you're the one extrapolating your experience onto other branches, not me. To be clear, I'm saying that it's atypical of the chain, not of the branch in question, of which I know nothing.
  10. MJB

    MJB Well-Known Member

    I have to say my experience of the Salisbury branch of LCE was similar to Tony's. Maybe it was a one off, but I was able to walk 200 yards to Castle Cameras where the staff couldn't have been more helpful and welcoming. Suffice to say that Castle Cameras have had my repeat business and I've never been in LCE since.
    EightBitTony likes this.
  11. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    Depends on personalities. I use LCE and they are great. My son worked in Jessops years ago and there was always a queue wanting to speak to him (in preference) for advice but he didn't get as much sold as his colleagues.
  12. Chester AP

    Chester AP Well-Known Member

    Tell LCE details of the shop and date - I have used various branches of LCE over the last 20 years and have never seen this happen.
    If I had witnessed that I would have had a quiet word with the manager of the branch afterwards and suggested there was a 'training issue' with that salesperson who was doing his/her best to lose a potential long-term customer.
    If LCE are told, and don't investigate, suggest that they risk something like this being the subject of a letter in AP.

    I once shamed a regional sales director of one of the big supermarket chains into working a checkout till on a busy Saturday morning... there were long queues and six tills not in use, and he was talking to a local manager and merely watching. Until I asked him who he was, and if he was going to be useful or ornamental. A lot of people heard me ask the question and it went very quiet whilst he considered his reply before logging on to a till and being stuck there for a while. Everybody should speak up about poor service.
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2018
  13. Louise7

    Louise7 Member

    I will be more than happy to give my feedback and review of my experience with LCE !!!!

    Changing the subject what about photo editing software, recommendations ?????
  14. Learning

    Learning Ethelred the Ill-Named

    Working a supermarket checkout is not rocket science or brain surgery, but to do it you need to know how to do it. I would expect to need at least ten minutes of training plus a day to get up to speed. Full marks to the regional sales director, and local manager if they could satisfatorily operate a couple of tllls under the pressure of a Saturday morning. I can use a self service till but prefer not to.
  15. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    Depends on what editing you want to do. There are three categories to my mind. First is minor adjustments to in-camera jpgs, such as cropping, rotating, make them brighter or darker. Second is the full blown graphic artist meets photographer which is major modifications to images, compositing images by cutting bits out and sticking bits in. Third is being selective about how the picture is rendered by working with the raw files and making modifications analogous to film processing.

    In our house we have one who does the first using paint shop pro, although there are many free programs that do that. Two who do the third, one using an ancient copy of Capture One and the other using Lightroom. Those are all commercial programs.

    The camera makers also provide free editing software. Canon software is very good, I can't much speak for other makers. I didn't really get on with the free Fuji software.

    I'd suggest to see what comes with your camera first of all then look at the free and the commercial software as you become more aware of your needs. You may come across other software bundles. I found that a copy of Adobe Elements (a popular program that does 1 and 2 above) came with my printer.
  16. Valley Ally

    Valley Ally Active Member

    Have you thought about getting a used camera to start with? I bought a Nikon D40 from a reputable dealer years back & I never regretted it. Then I got to know some photographers & picked up a used D5200 from someone upgrading to full frame.

    I've never used them but MPB always have lots & they grade them for condition & give you the shutter count.

    Check out Ken Rockwell, his website will tell you which older bodies are the same shape as the one you've tried (Nikon tend to add features but keep thd same general build on different ranges like the 3000s & 5000s)

    I would look for a camera with low shutter count, no scratches or missing parts and original packaging. I would avoid ebay as you don't usually get a guarantee.
  17. Chester AP

    Chester AP Well-Known Member

    He was a bit slow, but don't think the experience did him any harm. This happened only a few years ago, long after the days of prices being keyed in by the till operator, so he only had to scan the items and deal with the payments. I noticed that some of the customers who had witnessed events enjoyed asking him if he could come to the store every Saturday.
  18. Chester AP

    Chester AP Well-Known Member

    I was careful not to suggest that Currys were terrible, jut perhaps not the best place to buy a 'serious' camera and lenses if you need informed advice when deciding what to buy. For that, my advice was a specialist retailer.

    I got a decent upright 'no defrost' freezer from Currys in 1998, they delivered on a Sunday, and I still have it. Having spent 10 years regularly defrosting another freezer that had finally died, I didn't mind the salesman 'upselling' me to one of this type because, even though it was twice the price of an ordinary upright, it was clearly much better built and had the clear advantage to me of never needing to be defrosted. It was a German-made Bosch.
  19. nimbus

    nimbus Well-Known Member

    There is almost certainly a bit more to it than that, everybody else has an easy job!
  20. EightBitTony

    EightBitTony Well-Known Member

    The main point of my comment was that I don't take advice from retailers. They're there to retail. I take advice from people with fewer financial axes to grind.

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