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#89571 5-Sep-2011 15:36
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Thought I would share a good news story with you that may give hope to others out there!

I own a Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ7 (point and shoot digital camera) which recently suffered a cracked LCD display screen.

Heard rumours that replacing a screen is rather expensive, confirmed by quotes of $250+, but decided to do some research of my own to see what is out there on the web.

Luckily for me, YouTube sports a very detailed video (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xxSLIWaSHgk) of a full screen replacement in under 10 mins, and even I thought I could slowly follow the step by step instructions and complete it myself (maybe in under an hour!).   

NOTE: I would definitely describe myself at a newbie when it comes to tackling such a repair!

A quick search of Amazon UK returned a “replacement screen” for 17GBP (+ shipping).  http://www.amazon.com/Display-Panasonic-DMC-TZ7-DIGITAL-Replacement/dp/B004P62O5Y

However, out of interest, I thought I would email the “Panasonic NZ support” email address to see if they have one in stock locally.  Sure enough, they have them in stock in NZ, and for the SMALL sum of $215, I could have a replacement screen ‘kit’ couriered to me.  Thinking there must be a ‘proprietary’ vs ‘copy’ thing going on here, I did some deeper digging, and came across articles on various Digital Camera sites where people have commented that SOME of the ‘cheaper’ screens are not actually the real deal, and often will have a lower screen resolution etc. 

Decided to give the “cheaper alternative” a go, and ordered one via Amazon UK & family member in the UK.

Settled down last Thursday evening, and within 25 mins (One very stubborn screw wanted to hold up proceedings, and also had to keep playing a section of the video, then copying the steps), I had the old screen removed, and the new one installed.  Works 100%, and to be honest, I can not tell the difference between the replacement screen, and an original (via friends camera).  Though I did notice when installing that the new screen was in a slightly different build package, maybe 1mm smaller on one dimension, but this did not affect install at all.

So the lessons from this have been:
  • For some gadgets, all is not lost when damage occurs. You just need to be prepared to do some digging, and hope you have a model gadget that replacement parts are available for!
  • The web is an incredible resource for information like the above. Would I have tacked this without a video showing me how?  Not on your life!
  • The wife was well happy that for less than 50NZD all up, we have a working camera again.
  • Don’t underestimate the value of a good case for your gadgets!!!
Obviously I took on an element of risk doing this, that I would not suggest you tackle on your brand new iPhone for example, but for a 2 year old camera that otherwise was in excellent condition, it was a great result.

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  #516920 5-Sep-2011 15:41
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Good to hear! Ebay is good for parts like that, for cameras, phones, etc. Ebay is also great for odd batteries, instead of paying $20 here sometimes you can get 10 for $10.

I buy from ebay sellers in Hong Kong, things are generally delivered within a week. The only downside is they send things via signature required post so I usually have to call in to a post office to collect them.

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  #517415 6-Sep-2011 11:54
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Vendors don't really want you to fix / repair anything. They'd rather you bought a new one. So prices from the original source tend to be with very high margins. This helps cover the cost of carrying spares at all...as well as discouraging 95% of people who might like to have one cheap.....but "certainly won't at THAT price".

T'was ever thus...

Well done on the repair. GOLD STAR on your karma.  




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