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Camera City

Bloomsbury
One of a cluster of second-hand photography outlets to be found within a stone’s throw of each other, this tiny shop is a good place to look for hard-to-find vintage accessories ranging from flash adaptors to small-but-important things like a replacement tripod bush. It also stocks old Nikon, Canon, Olympus and Pentax cameras, and has a postal service if you can’t come personally. Apart from retail sales, the store provides a fast developing service for tourists who have to catch the evening plane, and a well-regarded and generally speedy repair service to digital and film cameras.
Venue name: Camera City
Contact:
Address: 16 Little Russell Street
London
WC1A 2HL
Opening hours: Open 10am-5.30pm Mon-Fri; 10am-2pm Sat
Transport: Tube: Tottenham Court Road tube

Average User Rating

1.8 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:1
  • 4 star:0
  • 3 star:0
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:4
LiveReviews|5
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Franky
1 of 1 found helpful

Guys - if you know what you want and see it at the price/condition you want in this place - by all means go for it. For anyone else, here is my experience: I went in to look at a camera and asked a technical question to the manager - he responded quite aggressively apparently because I was wrong to ask such a question(!). I mentioned that I was just looking at the camera today, and all of a sudden he put down the camera he was showing me, and went to sit at the back of the shop. I'm not sure why he did this, though it was clear that he was no longer interested in serving me. I was actually intending to purchase from here at a later date, but wanted to get an idea of cameras first! What a shame…still, it gives me an idea that if I have a problem with my equipment later…you don't know unless you try… That's my honest experience - he was very rude and quite childish - the offerings here might be very good…who knows? I can say that I am not prepared to put up with such behaviour. I'll spend where people are polite and respectful - they'll get the same from me after all.

Little W

I only wish I’d read the online reviews (both here and google) for this establishment before wasting over two months waiting for a camera repair which I now realise was never going to happen!

My experience mirrors many of the others I’ve read - absolutely delightful at the start, then when they (I say “they”, but to be perfectly honest I have absolutely no idea how many people are involved in this cowboy outfit, from the yarns I was being spun it could be anything from one to seven!) have the camera in their possession the service deteriorates with each subsequent contact. I was fobbed off with excuses every time I called the shop for an update. Initially the reasons for delay seemed quite plausible – waiting for the technician to return from holiday, waiting for a part… then my suspicions were aroused when one day the guy on the phone didn’t seem to have a clue what I was talking about! I made several calls to the shop and it’s just as well I did, because had I not, I seriously doubt they would have called me, and I suspect my camera would have laid, unattended to, gathering dust in the shop for years!

I later learned (from the reputable establishment I should have gone to in the first place) that my camera was in fact beyond repair, and further information from an authorized repairs agent revealed that the excuses I had been given for the “waiting for a part” delays in fixing it were somewhat questionable too.

Thankfully the experience only cost me the £10 estimate fee, despite the ‘warning’ when I said I wanted it back un-repaired that I would have to pay “around £100” in order to "have the camera put back together again”!

It’s a real shame that what on the surface is a wonderful little shop, selling some fantastic vintage kit is let down so badly by the dreadful – and quite frankly, dishonest - customer service

Nicolas P

AVOID AT ALL COST!!  Not only did they not fix my camera, but the issue is now even worse. These guys won't even pick up a phone to call you. My experience with these bunch of thieves was extremely painful. The whole story is as follows:


I have a Contax T2 with a lens that won't come in/out unless you depress the shutter button a bunch of times. Other than that the camera works perfectly.


Took it for a diagnose about 10 months ago and they quoted £149. Due to unforeseen circumstances at that time I had to use that money for something else so the repair had to wait until now. Took it again 2 weeks ago and they quoted £189. Fair enough, but I decided it was too much, as those cameras go for about £200 online and I saw broken/faulty ones go for about £100. I just wanted the camera repaired to sell it afterwards.


When I went to collect my camera the guy told me he would make me an offer for it for spares, for which I had to go back home and call them again in a few days, god knows why.


After calling him, he offered me £50, claiming the camera had ‘serious issues'. This is £50 minus the £10 I paid them to have it checked, of course. This also seemed quite strange, as he himself had said the wrong thing with it was the lens mechanism and I myself had been shooting it in that condition for about a year. 

When I told him I had seen these go for £100 on Ebay -in an attempt to make him an offer- he raised his voice considerably and said the most funny thing: "you can get one working for £180 from Japan" Absolutely hilarious coming from someone who sells a Canon 7 for £300. 


The final act happened in store, where I went for the third time to collect my camera, only to find the retractable lens 'cap' was stuck and won't even move. Let alone the lens, which was stuck behind it.


After insisting on the fact that the camera was already like that when I left it with them, he then said he hadn’t even taken it apart. UNBELIEVABLE. 'So how can you tell what's wrong with it then?' I replied. "Oh, I know this camera very well" He said, this same cynic who charged me £10 to 'check the camera and make a diagnose' and made me wait 3 days to even give me the first quote that came over his head. He then started pressing the lens cap with his finger, and it eventually started working -he did this 2 times- and said there was probably a loose screw which was impeding the cap to move. ‘See? it works now’ UN-BE-LIE-VA-BLE.


They’ve even quoted their ’20 years of experience’. Pity Google Reviews has only been around for a couple of years, otherwise their ranking would be about minus 20??


This is the kind of shop where you would get bullied and charged thousands in the 90s before internet existed. PLEASE AVOID. I only went in there because they were the only ones who would take my camera for a ‘repair’ and it turned out to be a nightmare.

Jill

I am all for supporting independent shops but their service is dreadful. They have had my camera (to repair) for 2 months and every time I call to chase the job they say they are waiting for parts and it will be another week. It is beyond ridiculous. Their customer service is terrible. Unfortunately I have paid up front and they wont refund me. Do NOT waste your time or money on these jokers.

RIOANNOU
0 of 1 found helpful

I just picked up my repaired camera, so so happy i was told by other repair shops that it was beyond repair, so pleased would recomend this shop to everyone.