Buying second-hand lenses

Started Jan 23, 2013 | Questions thread
Karl Summers
Karl Summers Regular Member • Posts: 234
Re: Buying second-hand lenses

AndyMulhearn wrote:

In the past I've recommended people look at buying second-hand from dealers as a way of saving some cash and taking advantage of resale where others have traded up. I'm about to do that now, looking for something like an L 70-200 F4 and a short zoom like the Canon 10-22 or similar.

I've googled and found this set of recommended checks - - but wonder if there are any other checks I should consider. Like taking some test shots and reviewing them on an iPad/Laptop to look for any distortions etc.

Any thoughts?


When shopping for used equipment on eBay I always insist on an adequate complement of pictures, especially of the front and rear elements and also of the barrell. When someone says "mint condition", I expect no wear, no scratches, no blemishes. I also like to see a rather good explanation of the lens with clear and concise language in their description(i.e. no tricky language lke "no 'known' issues" or "great condition 'as far as I can tell")

I bought all three of my lenses, 2 used and 1, "new-other" from eBay. Saved $500. They were a 10-22, 70-200 f/4, and a 15-85. They are all sharp and in perfect working order. I was leery at first about buying used but I took a chance anyways. With the savings I was able to buy hight quality polarizers for all 3. I even picked up a mint condition genuine canon tripod mount ring for the 70-200 for only $80.(Retail $160).

Even if the seller says 'no returns' I will still consider buying, as I did the 70-200 and 10-22. Paypal has a buyer protection plan, so if your item isn't in the same condition as advertised, you can open up a claim and get your money back if the seller doesn't comply.

Good luck with your shopping.

 Karl Summers's gear list:Karl Summers's gear list
Sony Alpha a7R II Sony FE 85mm F1.4 GM
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