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Canon RF200-800mm F6.3-9 IS USM Ship Dates???? Info in My Canon Account

bobhowdy
Enthusiast

It seems that Canon did not have a manufacturing run that will come close to covering all of the preordered 200-800 lens.  My "guy" at B&H told me that they received 8 for this month and all other are Back Ordered. B&H had 700+ preorders. My preorder was thru Canon Sales.
I checked in "My Canon Account" and it stated that my order was "Processing"  Since this made no sense... I called Canon Professional Services ..... while the gentleman on the phone did a good job, he also was not able to tell me when or if my lens would ship.  I preordered the 200-800 on 11/2/23.
I went thru these problems when I ordered my first R5 and my 100-500mm lens .... I waited months for both items.

I have an R3 arriving tomorrow (from B&H) .... Makes me wonder if I made a mistake?
A disappointed loyal Canon user


Bob Howdeshell
Life has an expiration date
Canon R3, Canon R5 (2), several Canon lenses and a couple of Sigma lenses
5 REPLIES 5

AtticusLake
Mentor
Mentor

This kind of thing is certainly frustrating and disappointing. I mean, you just want them to take your money and send you the flippin product!!

But having spent years working in the product manufacturing side of things, I can also see the manufacturer's point of view.

I worked on tablets, not lenses, but I would guess that a lot of the same issues apply. We spent about a year developing a new tablet product -- from CPU selection to products on shelves -- and to ensure that we would have the components to actually build the products, we had to order components a year ahead of time. That means firm, legally binding orders, a year before the customers even see the product.

So how many do you order? If you order a million sets of components (screens, CPUs, memory, etc.) and end up selling half a million devices, you're hugely screwed. I've seen companies go down for that specific reason.

OTOH, if you order a million but the product goes viral and users want 2 million, you end up with a lot of disappointed people complaining about you. This is also bad.

I can only imagine that if the product is a specialised, high price / low volume item -- like a big telephoto zoom lens -- the problem of guessing demand well ahead of time is only that much harder.

So yeah, this sucks. But I wouldn't want to be in Canon's shoes. This is far from easy.

bobhowdy
Enthusiast

Thank You for the response, Atticus Lake.
I understand how the manufacturing world works .... I did work in plants for some of the largest companies in the world, and learned the thought process well.  It does seem like Canon did not learn their lesson from the R5 / R6 releases and then a bit later for the 100-500mm lens release. Nikon had similar unhappy customer issues during their fairly recent PF lens releases.

The previous release of the 100-500mm lens should have given Canon an indication of what they might expect for the 200-800mm lens.  Why not announce the product and the preorder dates with a statement that only an X number will be available initially. I still believe that customers will have a level of disappointment but at least there would also be up front transparency.

Canon is in the manufacturing business, there is no excuse for this type of customer service, in my humble opinion.


Bob Howdeshell
Life has an expiration date
Canon R3, Canon R5 (2), several Canon lenses and a couple of Sigma lenses

MarkG
Contributor

Eight for the month? Yikes! I'm hoping that just represents a delay of a few weeks. I ordered from B&H a few hours after the lens was announced so I hope I'm in the first several hundred.

If one wants to be an optimist, I think it's possible that the delay may only amount to missing the target by a few weeks. I have to think that Canon had a pretty good idea of what the demand would be. It's a no brainer to see that an under $2,000 super-tele would be in high demand. I understand the argument that there are risks involved in overestimating demand, but in this case, I don't really buy that. Typically a lens model has a lifespan of 5-10 years before being replaced, so I'd say the risk of overproducing lenses in the first run would be pretty minimal, with warehouse space being the major expense if sales are slower than expected. They will sell eventually. 

Of course there are limits to just how many lenses can come off an assembly line at a time and even if you move to three shifts a day, it may be hard to meet initial demand, without adding additional lines or bumping other products. 

I am sympathetic to Canon, but I do wish they would be a bit more transparent at times. In my opinion, that's an ongoing issue with the company. They simply don't like to share information with customers. They have issued the perfunctory disclaimer that demand is expected to exceed capacity, but I would like them to share more than that. I think customers would be a lot happier and more understanding if they issued regular updates with best estimates. If I knew, for example that first-week preorders will take until February or March to be filled, it would be a lot better than being completely in the dark. 

mdougc
Enthusiast

Canon.UK is estimating ship date of January 4th. What do they know that Canon.USA doesn't?

Buy Canon RF 200-800mm F6.3-9 IS USM Lens — Canon UK Store

mDougC
Wildlife photographer - EOS R, R5 many lenses, LR Classic, Topaz, necessary gadgets

I contacted Canon USA last month a few days after my 24-105/2.8 failed to ship on the 14th and was told that they don’t give out information on preorder or backorder status.  I expressed my disappointment since I had stayed up the night of November 2nd to preorder as soon as Canon USA allowed it.  Weirdly, the lens shipped out to me that afternoon.  Coincidence? Probably.  Canon and their competitors have become really bad about announcing new products and then dribbling out a few around the date they promised shipping would start.  Then practically nothing for months.  I made my choice to preorder the 24-105 and to wait for some reviews of a production 200-800 lens.  Pre pandemic I had a contact at one of the larger camera stores that could get me just about any new Canon gear when it was released.  Unfortunately he gave up working and retired during the pandemic…

Currenly using R5 and R7 mostly plus a variety of Canon RF and EF lens...
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