03-09-2020 03:14 PM
A third-party vendor, an authorized Canon dealer, sells two versions of a Canon BP-820 battery (for Vixia camcorders).
The regular version is for $116. But then they have a 'no retail packaging' version for just $49. When asking them why there was a $70 difference, they simply stated that they didn't know, but also stated the item was new.
Has anyone seen this before? Something seems fishy.
03-09-2020 09:03 PM
No retail packaging version is probably gray market, intended for sale somewhere other than the U.S. market. If it is a new genuine Canon battery that is just gray market AND the retailer will take it back (without restocking/shipping charges) if defective on arrival then I would go with the no retail package version. A gray market battery won't have a U.S. warranty but for a ~60% discount on a battery I would take my chances on a battery without a warranty. I would much rather have a gray market Canon battery than a third party battery.
03-10-2020 01:16 PM
Thank you, Roger. I also suspected gray marketing going on. Since the vendor is an authorized Canon reseller, it's just a shame though if indeed they are selling such goods.
While it is indeed an attractive price, I'll personally pass. Should I need the extra battery, will purchase the one where you know exactly what you're getting.
And I agree with you regarding 3rd-party batteries; I just stick with the Canon brand myself.
03-14-2020 08:38 PM
You are welcome! Some authorized Canon retailers sell a few gray market products but they clearly mark them as such. I can't even remember what model it was now but when I was actively using my EOS 650 film camera I recall buying one gray market lens from B&H because there was a long back order for the U.S. item and I don't recall ever having an issue with it.
Some unscrupulous dealers also remove standard Canon included items, replace them with generic items, and then sell the real Canon items (like batteries and camera straps) separately to other customers but that would typically be at a price far closer to the standard price for the Canon battery. Back in the film days when ordering was via 1-800 rather than clicking on a link, Canon did some "kit" offerings with pretty decent glass and some of the sleazier merchants would pull the Canon lens and replace it with a Sigma back in the days when Sigma was more of a lesser quality and far cheaper lens than Canon so the advertised Canon kit would come with lesser parts-something they often disclosed via a tiny asterisk which led the potential customer to an even tinier footnote.
The camera retail industry has always attracted a lot of sketchy retailers; one of the reasons I have been a satisfied B&H customer for decades and have no motivation to switch.