"bypassing the dealer who wanted an extra 50,000 to 100,000 yen for acting as postman."
I was in NYC at one of the dealers a couple years ago looking at PhaseOne and Hasselblad backs for our midtown commercial studios, and when I asked what the added value was, the above quote is exactly what he said. He said if it went down, I could bring the back to the dealer, and they would mail it for me!?!
I was expected to pay thousands per year to have them mail something for me if it went down. Wow.
And they may have also offered a free loaner in the mean time, but since the salesman could not even keep the backs connected while I was there testing the cameras (!), I doubt that they would have delivered a working replacement solution. He literally did not know how to keep the cameras connected for 1/2 hour at a time. (they had either software issues, firewire issues, or whatnot). Then he had dead batteries in the test bodies...
Needless to say...I did not purchase from them.
p.s. this was one of the top three MFDB dealers in NY.
So, I have a question.
On average, what are people paying these days for the 5 year "added value"?
P.S. I know shooters at the top of their field - such as http://gregkadelstudios.com/
who regularly shoot mixing backs and Canons ON THE SAME SHOOT, for the same client and never get any complaints about IQ. And looking at the prints, you would never know which camera shot what.