(news & commentary) Updated
A week after the first D600 class action suit was filed, Nikon has issued a new D600 service advisory. Basically, you can have your D600 serviced free of charge. That service will include inspection, cleaning and replacement of the shutter assembly and related parts, as well as free shipping both ways. The advisory first appeared on the NikonUSA site, but has now been posted worldwide. The free service will be done regardless of the warranty status of the camera.
Those that have sent their cameras previously to Nikon and paid for shipping should contact Nikon and be prepared to send them a copy of your shipping receipt. Nikon says that they’ll reimburse that shipping charge.
Those that have previously sent a camera in for repair should get an email from Nikon saying that the camera does not have to come back to them for further repair.
Nikon has asked dealers to return existing D600 inventory to them, though it’s not clear what will happen to those cameras at this point. In all likelihood, they’ll go through the refurbishment program, so we may see another round of low cost refurbished D600’s soon.
In essence, this seems to be Nikon’s response to the class action suit that was filed. As I noted, the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act has provisions in it that generally protect a company from suit, but only if the company repairs defective products to the level of merchantability (i.e., the product does what it is expected to do).
Unfortunately, I think Nikon is still behind public opinion even after this action. First, the action appears to only have been taken in response to a class action suit. Second, Nikon equivocates a bit in the advisory (“It is a well-known fact that the presence of dust particles cannot be completely avoided…” and “your D600…will continue to require normal periodic sensor cleanings.”). Nikon is still not following the usual tactics recommended for dealing with a serious problem, though they’re slowly getting closer ;~).