Canadian photojournalist Nick Didlick notes that Nikon Canada is now offering a service agreement for D1 owners, extending the warranty period on the camera for up to a total of three years, and at a price that should make it easy to swallow for both individual and newspaper purchasers of the camera.
The Nikon D1 Service Contract, introduced July 4, is available in 1 and 2 year terms, and is in addition to the 1 year of warranty coverage provided with each D1 sold in Canada already. The 1 year extended warranty, for a total of two years of warranty coverage, is CDN$450. The 2 year extended warranty, for a total of three years of warranty coverage, is CDN$750.
Nikon D1 Service Contract
Terms of the contract, according to a Nikon Canada document, include:
- Within the Original Warranty Period: full warranty coverage for one year, plus one comprehensive check-up and one maintenance cleaning during the twelve-month period;
- Within the One-Year Extended Warranty Period: full warranty coverage for two years, plus one comprehensive check-up and one maintenance cleaning during each of the two twelve-month periods;
- Within the Two-Year Extended Warranty Period: full warranty coverage for three years, plus one comprehensive check-up and one maintenance cleaning during each of the three twelve-month periods.
During the period covered under the applicable service contract, repairs and adjustments will be made free of charge, including all materials and labour.
Nikon Canada Inc.'s Warranty and Service Contract cover any repairs and adjustments necessary due to regular wear and tear, excluding cosmetic wear to outlet covers. However, the Warranty and Service Contract do not cover damage caused by impact, water, sand, other accidental damage, misuse or unauthorized repair.
Nikon Canada national service manager Gerhard Brahms says that the check-up and maintenance cleaning includes the testing of every function on the D1, as well as a cleaning of the CCD cover glass.
If the camera was purchased after July 4th, it should have shipped with service contract information in the box, with an option to purchase the contract up to 21 days after the camera's purchase date. Nikon Canada is offering the service contract retroactively to Canadians who purchased D1 cameras before July 4 as well.
Like most extended warranties, it doesn't cover the type of repairs that are most likely to be needed: those that result from impact damage and exposure to the elements. It does, however, provide a relatively inexpensive hedge against unforeseen and expensive problems in the D1 that may not crop up until well into the camera's second or third year of use. I'm a big fan of service contracts for pricey digital cameras, because of the potential for high-cost repairs due to a digital component giving out. The D1 by all accounts is extremely reliable, but is still filled with expensive technology that lacks any kind of reliability history. Nikon Canada's service contract, like that offered by Kodak on its pro cameras, offers D1 owners the ability to fix the cost of one type of repair, with the peace of mind that goes along with that. Kodak's Gold level of service still goes one better, however, by guaranteeing a loaner camera while the customer's camera is being repaired.
Nikon USA and Latin America do not have a similar service contract in place. Nikon USA's Bill Brocks indicates that there are no plans to introduce one. In fact, it appears that Nikon Canada is the only Nikon region worldwide offering a service agreement (feedback from photographers outside the US and Canada on this is welcome). As always, customer demand is the best way to move a service contract up the priority list with Nikon in your region of the world. LT. Jim Bunnell, a material officer for the US Navy, is among those who would be interested in Nikon USA offering a service agreement:
Speaking for the U.S. Navy's Pacific Fleet Combat Camera Group and the other D1s we've procured for the Pacific Fleet commands, we would be very interested in an extended warranty on the D1s (and future D1s/D2s) we own.
The Nikon D1 Service Contract is not sold through dealers, but must be purchased directly from Nikon Canada's customer service department in Mississauga, Ontario. Dial +1 905-625-9910 to request the Nikon D1 Service Contract information package and purchasing form.