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Smart: Panasonic ‘Try Before You Buy’ Service in UK!


Panasonic UK just had the smart idea to launch the new ‘Try Before You Buy” servie! Basically you can get the new Panasonic GH3 and 12-35mm lens for 48 hours (excluding delivery and collection time). You will have to request he camera form one of the stores listed here below. I think that’s a great thing for all those of us that want to try a camera before to actually buy it. Barney Sykes, Lumix G Camera Product & Marketing Manager says “The GH3 is by far the most advanced system camera we have ever launched and we recognise customers may want to road test this product before committing to such as high value purchase, therefore we are  delighted to be able to offer this scheme to our key retail partners to help increase their sales opportunities

I wish this service to be extended worldwide! :)

Retailers include:

·        Annings, Ilkley, Yorkshire
·        Bradford CE
·        Cambrian
·        Camerabox Kettering
·        Cameraland / Stanbrook Cardiff
·        Camera Solutions
·        Carmarthen Camera Centre, Camarthan
·        Castle Cameras Bournemouth
·        Chas Eagles
·        Chas Norman Cameras Sevenoaks
·        Chris Goodhead
·        Clifton Cameras Dursley
·        Comleys
·        Frank Wilkinsons
·        Harrison Cameras
·        Mathers
·        Mifsuds Brixham
·        Park Cameras
·        Peter Rogers
·        Photo Express
·        Photosound Vantage, Bishops Stortford
·        Richards (Bass & Bligh)
·        S R S Microsystems Ltd Watford
·        T4 Cameras Swindon
·        Williams
·        York Camera Mart
·        Conns Camera, Ireland
·        Bermingham Camera, Ireland

found via Whatdigitalcamera.

  • Mirrorless Hobbyist

    But only in the UK! :(

    This sounds like a great idea. A lot of people, including myself, are still hesitant to invest so much into the GH3 system. Right now, a GH3 body would still cost me AU$350 more than the E-M5 body (local pricing, YPWV).

    But as a do-it-all kind of camera, it presents great value with a lot of features. Some local stores are offering a “GH3 Pro Kit” for ~AU$3900 which includes GH3 body, both 12-35 & 35-100 f/2.8 lenses, genuine Panasonic battery grip and spare battery. This is good value when you consider how much it would cost to purchase each item separately, but it’s still a lot of money to throw on a 4/3″ sensor system. For pros who can claim back some of their expenses, it would be a great backup or even main system, particularly for those who have interest in both stills and HD video. For a hobbyist like myself, I would really need to know that I would make good use of the zooms to make the investment worthwhile or else I’d be better off with just the GH3 body and a prime like the 25/1.4 to start off with. But the “Pro Kit” deal would only be ~AU$1000 more than this combo and you get the two 2.8 zooms, grip and battery, which would all cost a lot more if bought separately!

  • GH3 owner

    No need for one in the US. Quite frankly most stores offer 15 or 30 day of trial period. Tho I am certainly quite some folks would feel guilty about doing so.

    • Doing so with Amazon used ones (Warehous deals) is guilt-free!

    • 20-30 day trial. What do they do with the returns? Return them to Panasonic? Resell them as new? Resell them as used?

  • Gary Rhyason

    I purchased a G3 1/2 yrs ago. Have both lens’ great camera a good size for traveling and getting into tight places. I am a hobby photog. Land scape, wild life,street and photo walks. Will be checking out the Gh3.

  • mista_mojo

    As the amount of retail stores drops this is going to be essential. Anecdotal evidence suggests that most retail stores are used by consumers to try a product hands on and then make the purchase online. Personally i don’t do this unless the margin of difference in 15% or more.

    As more retail stores shut down the manufacturers need to find other ways for consumers to try their products

  • Ash

    Glad to see Panasonic stepping up the marketing. They need to do even more!

  • Anonymous

    This is a program that is going to sell a lot of cameras. Fantastic idea, Panasonic. It’s really hard to imagine anyone trying a GH3 for any serious span of time and not wanting one.

    • Stu5

      It won’t sell many cameras if they can’t get more dealers to stock it in the first place. This list is tiny.

  • ED

    I would hate to be the one that gets a camera that someone else tried and returned thru such programmes! I already get annoyed when they sell me items that are on display collecting dust just bcoz thats the only one they have in stock, so I can’t imagine what Id feel getting second hand goods;)

    But great idea nontheless. It took me more than two days to figure out my OM-D tho, not sure if that’s enough…

    • Kenneth

      @ED I think the point is that it’s the same camera(s) that will be on loan. If you decide to buy one, you’ll get a “fresh” copy..

  • Cheetos Ortiz

    Great idea. Cheaper than a rental. =P

  • Vivek

    Let me know when they change their battery policy..

    • mista_mojo

      “Let me know when they change their battery policy..”


      Forgive me but my international telepathic abilities have waned somewhat.

    • true homer

      so you dont buy the cameras because of the batteries? nice reasoning…

      • Vivek

        Yeah, >100 Euros/battery/model. They sneakily disable 3rd party batteries. Nasty.

        • And often a few months later, those 3rd parties got around that again…

          Its silly and pointless, as it only makes their cameras a bit less desirable, without actually accomplishing much in the way of selling extra batteries.

  • Matthias

    In Switzerland Pentax makes the same since a few weeks.

  • Great idea, it seems Panasonic is confident enough on their product – their bet is that after testing the camera enough users will be hooked in order to pay for it.

  • Philip Broom


  • GH3 owner

    I now have the GH3 with the 12-35/2.8 zoom.
    I also own a D800E with the Nikon 24-70/2.8 lens.
    The Nikon combo take the best still picture on this planet but for handheld video (AF in particular) it is meh.
    Now even inside the house I am using my GH3 much more than my beloved Nikon, especially for tracing my 1 year old.
    The GH3/12-35 is that good.

  • safaridon

    Probably a smart move by Panasonic aimed as much at selling their premium f2.8 zoom lenses as the GH3 camera. Clearly aimed at the higher end DSLR users with the financial resources but who are hesitant to buy until they have tried it out and felt the difference. Actually with the short supply of GH3 cameras available for sale this may be aimed to get more customers standing in line on the wait list while they are able to sell the slightly used models at a premium?

  • Lucasz

    This sounds like a last throw of the dice. Try before we die.

    • true homer

      Yeah, that must be it…never mind that they’re selling like its the end of the world…

      • Stu5

        true homer in the UK you can buy them off the shelf. That is the whole point, they are not selling like it’s the end of the world. The list is small as they can’t get many dealers to stock it either.

        • Lucasz

          You’re right Stu5. Nobody serious about this would buy a GH3, that’s why they’ve had to resort to handing them out. A Canon 6D with 24-105 is only £70 dearer in the UK than the GH3 with the 12-35. No comparison for stills. If you’re half serious about video you buy a 5D. If you’re serious you buy a 1C.

          The loan scheme also means that ther will be a slather of cheap refurbished GH3s coming on to the market in a few months time.

          A new GX99 with EVF will sell but now competing with Fuji’s X-E1, Sony’s NEX-7, Nikon 1 and whatever else is round the corner. Panny potentially had the market almost to themselves three years ago with the GF1 but they blew it with no EVF.

          With the financial pressure which many Panny divisions are under this could be the beginning of the end.

          I like my little G1 for travel, I’ll keep it for that.

      • truer homer 2

        gh3 sucks, no one buys high end m4turds.

  • Great Idea. Hope it works for them and makes many happy users.

  • it looks like this camera is not listed on their 2013 list. Is this an old camera?

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