DigitalRev Allegedly Selling Used Cameras As New, And Are Yet To Issue A Response

DigitalRev Allegedly Selling Used Cameras As New, And Are Yet To Issue A Response

Rob Dunlop, creative director and brains behind, just posted an interesting and also somewhat humorous account of his purchase of a Canon 5d Mark III through Rob, spurred on by a series of bizarre coincidences, ended up doing some research on his new camera, only to find that it had not only been used, but used somewhat extensively by DigitalRev to create a review.

Rob, excited to get his hands on a new release, ordered the Canon 5d Mark III through DigitalRev (yep, that DigitalRev, beloved by everyone for their humorous, candid reviews) a few months ago, and immediately noticed a few things wrong with his purchase. The body came in a box that was designated for a camera and a lens, and the body had somehow been used to take roughly 60 images. While not an exorbitant number of pictures, Rob notes that it was a bit fishy, but chalked it up to Canon perhaps testing the body before sending it over to be sold, which would be a perfectly reasonable explanation.

Not really thinking too much of it, Rob continued on his merry way for a few months. It was just recently, however, that he discovered the website, which allows you to input your camera's serial number in order to prevent and track occurrences of theft. StolenCameraFinder works by comparing the serial number in your cameras metadata with other images on the internet, and if a positive match is found, it will notify you of where that image is located.

Just looking to kill some time, Rob punched his cameras' serial numbers into the website. On his first camera, there was no fuss. But his second camera's serial number came back with, strangely, one positive match. Which was, lo and behold, a shot taken by Kai of DigitalRev while putting together their 5d Mark III video review. Check out these action shots of Rob's 5d Mark III being used around the streets of Hong Kong with the protective LCD cover still on the camera:

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Rob started to piece together the puzzle, and before long, he knew more than he ever wanted about his camera's previous owner, including its 'history' of being used in the rain, being far too close to private parts, and the specific scenes that it was used to shoot and film.

To check out the entire exposé, which is rather humorously put together, head over to Rob's blog, which can be found here. We are eagerly awaiting a response from DigitalRev regarding this whole situation, and will update the post as soon as we learn more.

via r/photo

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Previous comments
Jens Marklund's picture

I'd be honored.

At least it wasn't the 7d they set on fire.

Marc Maggard's picture

I actually ordered a 7D from them and got that one.....

Umm.. When you go to a store, and buy a "brand new" camera off the shelf, it has many shots taken from it.. As ppl come in, and test it.. Sometimes only 10-15.. Sometimes a lot more.. But seriously 60 shots is NOTHING to be a crybaby about on a dslr these days.. If it was 600, sure, but even that isn't a lot... When you consider that these cameras are good for hundreds of thousands of shots.. Get over it.. It's 60 shots..

Erm, not if you're buying new they don't. The one in the store is called demo stock and when sold it is marked as "ex-demo"

 This is just incorrect. Unless you're specifically buying the demo model, which is usually reduced, none of the cameras that are fresh out of a box should have any exposures taken with them.

 i do not think its the shutter count that is the problem here.. I believe its the mere fact that you bought a product as new that was not.. and taken out.. water over it.. touched by someone's.. body fluids... and basically. ya. been used before.  same thing applies here as it were to if you were to buy a tv.. im sure u dont want to buy a tv knowing it was used before from someone else.. 

Joe Topping's picture

Got my 5d off this site, super cheap compared to other places. I wouldn't knock em. I reckon people want to shut them down because they do actually sell things cheaper than most other places. Back to the new/used thing though - meh, for what you pay I reckon it works out. And when they test 'new' cameras before shipping you could say that's USED haha. Though I do worry sometimes watching their show they don't use camera straps and Ki is always dropping shit the clumsy bastard.

Joe Topping's picture

 And what I want to know is - why is the woman in the 2nd picture not wearing any pants?

good eye :D

Not sure of the logic here. If I buy something new I expect it to not be used. If it has already been used then I expect it to be labelled as such. Like if I buy a beefburger I expect it to contain beef not horse....oh wait...

Bua's picture

Are you sure it wasn't painted pink and then repainted black. But seriously, this may not be a bit deal for people who are currently not the owner of this camera, but this signifies a betryal of trust that the DIGITALREV #digitalrev has created for themselves.

Nick's picture

I'm not surprised that douchebag from digital rev would do something like that. Just check out one of his videos on youtube and you will find out fast what a tool this jerk is.

Nic Cage's Hair's picture

 I agree 100%. I don't understand like people like him- he's not funny and a giant bore.

King Street's picture

I can offer some more first hand experience. I ordered some pocket wizard products from them months ago, supposedly usa models, and they were not! Their return policy is an obsolute nightmare and it took weeks for me to get them to accept the return and even more time to get my money back. For insurance and shipping back to hong kong cost me over $60 and I only had a few small items that added up to less than 1 pound. You could imaging what a camera, or camera lens combo would cost you. I highly encourage everyone- Never buy from these guys if your in the US! 

I would demand lok and kai to sign that camera. i don't understand some people, i work in a camera store. i put a camera from a brand new box to show them just because we don't have a demo. and after they decide they want it. they will refuse to buy the one you just show them which has no shutter count on it. all we did is put it in you hand so you know what it feels like holding that camera.

that sound like a open box item to me now

Mark Patten's picture

I ordered some stuff from them a year ago. A couple of Nikkor FX Lenses to begin with. The way the order was handled was a nightmare from beginning to end. I sent them an email saying that I was budgeting £112k for a professional equipment list and if they were not interested in my business to say so as they had the personal skills of a bad Anime character!

Nothing changed. Order took weeks. I said in a follow up email, "Thanks and kiss the rest of my budget being spent with your company." 

Now I see this, I am sooooooo glad I went with companies in the UK and Italy. Pleasure to do business with. Personal hands on service. Not a question of anything being "dodgy", or misrepresented.

I hope you are well compensated and have a new camera at the end of this.

And let it again be said, as we all know it so well....Caveat Emptor. 

Plain and simple when I'm spending money on something that's marketed to me as new I expect it to be unused. That means Kai didn't rub it with his balls, set it on fire, threw it down the stairs in a crumpler bag on a manikin. I don't care about grey markets,warranties and return policies new is new and if it's not new it's used and should be priced as such.

Nic Cage's Hair's picture

Maybe now less sites will feature the (never) funny "Kai" and his dull insipid videos. 

Josh Robertson's picture

I thought I was the only one who didn't understand the whole Kai/DigitalRev bandwagon.  They have a huge following but every time I try, I can't make it through an entire video...

Brendan James's picture

I would just be thankful I didn't buy Kai's 7D.

Josh Robertson's picture

Just another data point to consider: 

DigitalRev is selling SB-910 speedlights for $439, well below retail.  Yesterday, there were two positive reviews of the flash and 1 quasi-negative review/question which asked, "How used is this flash? It's too good to be true."  I replied to that comment mentioning that actually DigitalRev has been shown to sell used goods as new, with a link to this "exposé" article.  Well, as of today both of our negative comments/reviews have been erased, leaving only the positive reviews.  So, it would appear that in addition to whatever degree of new/used creative licence DigitalRev may take with their inventory, they are also positively biasing their reviews by expunging any negative feedback.

Not very ethical business practices in my book.  Caveat emptor!

sons of bitches, sometimes i wish i can run into kai and lok in HK in the streets. .i'd probably beat them up

There are 3 principals when doing business in Asia; they are PROFIT, PROFIT, and PROFIT.  They don't care how. Spend a year or two doing business in Hong Kong and you'll know.

All of this begs the only question: WHO BUYS NEW CAMERAS FROM DIGITALREV? I mean what's wrong with B&H or Adorama or hundreds of other real camera dealers for that matter?

here's the digital rev video

Thanks for covering the story. I've updated the article with an initial response from DigitalRev

Please update this article to include DigitalRev's response. They have taken significant steps to resolve the situation and ensure that it doesn't happen again.

Chris Adval's picture

no update or comment by DigitalRev? Sounds odd like how my Canon 6D came to me from them. I'm gonna check it on