Wednesday, 10 August 2016

The problem with the Nissin Air System - read before you buy!

If you’re considering to buy into the Nissin Air System, you should consider the following: if you've bought online or grey market, your product may be unusable with other purchases.

Back while waiting for the Phottix Odin II to become available, I saw the Nissin Di700A for sale with the Air 1 Commander. A relatively new product, I could only get stock through a Hong Kong seller on EBay. Luckily, all worked and I made use of it.

Flash forward to now, and the Nissin i60A had just become available at B&H, and I decided I wanted to buy it and check it out. I thought I’d also get a Nissin Air R Receiver to use with my Sony flash and added it all to my cart. I can’t remember what I wanted to check but, by some fortuitous reason before I bought it, I looked up the Air R on the Nissin website:

** Firmware Update for Air 1 is required to work with Air R.

Ok, I think, no problem if I need to update the firmware, should be able to plug it into… Wait, there’s no usb port. So, how do I update the firmware?
How to obtain firmware update for Air 1
Nissin Marketing provide free firmware update service to genuine Nissin product. 
Please check at your local dealer for details about the update service. (Local warranty card is required for free firmware update service)
The B&H product page says the following about compatibility:
For Use with Air 1 Commander
There is absolutely no mention of the requirement for latest firmware.

Now, because I ordered the Di700A from Hong Kong, I don’t have a local warranty card. Luckily for me, I do have a Nissin dealer nearby, so I went in to ask there about getting the firmware upgraded (informing them I had a grey import). That was on 7 July, and I’m yet to hear back from them. If I had just bought the Air R from B&H, presumably it wouldn’t work at all for me.

I have since asked at another store, also a Nissin authorised dealer, and who also had no information or idea about how to get Nissin Air products updated with latest firmware.

I can’t seem to find any verification whether the new Nissin i60A requires the latest firmware or not. Until then, or I verify how I can update my Air 1 Commander, it’s on my do not buy list.

Lesson: don’t buy Nissin from grey market and don’t buy Nissin if you don’t have a local dealer.

It’s a pity in this day and age, that Nissin don’t give users the ability to update the firmware themselves. Given this is a failing on their design, it’s also very miserly to require owners of Nissin gear to have a local warranty card to get a free update.

Nissin, this is your design fault, and people have bought your system. Given the hassle of them having to take into a dealer to get the firmware upgraded, the least you could do is to offer this service free to all your customers. Wherever they purchased it from, it’s still your poorly thought out product.

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