Camera shopping in Tokyo – Westside (updated for 2022)
So let’s get straight to it. The Westside camera shopping guide. As there are so many stores in Tokyo it is simply not possible to have them all in one guide, so we have split the guides into the Westside and Eastside guides.
The stores are actually pretty evenly distributed throughout Tokyo. There is simply no way you can visit all of the stores in these two guides in one day unless you are a complete masochist.
Fujiya Camera, Nakano
Fujiya Camera in Nakano is an old dependable mainstay albeit a slightly confusing one. They’ve been in the biz since 1938 and you don’t last that long being crappy. There’s actually 4 stores spread out around Nakano station. Fujiya prices are quite competitive and the selection is pretty good. There’s something for everyone over the 4 shops, from the latest digital doohickies to old film cameras to tripods and various accessories to video equipment to junk items.
It is a big store and well worth a visit, but it has faded in the last few years. The selection is not what it was. The staff are helpful, but don’t bother asking for a discount. Fujiya has a bit of a legend status amongst foreigners, but in all honesty JCH doesn’t got there all that often.
The first is the main store, where you will find all the latest digital camera equipment. They have new items as well as used items all on this floor. Oddly, digital Nikon and Pentax are found on the 2nd floor.
Fujiya do offer part exchange and trade-ins, but don’t expect good prices for your stuff. The bigger stores like this one can be pretty ruthless about pricing.
1F Hours : Mon-Sun 10:00 AM – 8:30 PM
Good for: Digital Canon, Sony, Fujifilm, Olympus, Panasonic, Ricoh, Sigma, Tamron, Zeiss, Tokina, other
Just to the right of the main store you will find the staircase that leads you to the second floor, where all the film items are. They have a decent selection of items especially for Nikon, Pentax and Mamiya.
2F Hours : Mon-Sun 10:00 AM – 8:30 PM
Good for: Nikon, Pentax, Leica, Sigma, Tamron, Zeiss, Voigtlander, Tokina, film camera, large format, medium format camera, bag
Walk down the street further towards the station and you’ll find the accessories shop on the left. There’s loads of stuff crammed into this space but a good deal on a tripod head could be had here. The staff don’t speak English much but are very knowledgeable about their goods.
Hours : Mon-Sun 10:00 AM – 8:15 PM
Good for: tripod, monopod, tripod head, binoculars, cases, lighting equipment, stands, reflectors
Here you will find junk parts of course; used filters, lens cases, hoods, straps, parts and whatever random knick knacks. You will have to navigate to this corner on the 2nd floor of Nakano Broadway
Nakano Broadway 2F
Hours : Mon-Sun 11:00 AM – 8:00 PM
Good for: used filters, lens cases, hoods, straps, viewfinders, caps, manuals, broken bodies for parts
For the videographers out there, there’s even a video equipment store on the 3rd floor of Nakano Broadway.
Hours: Mon-Sun 10:30-20:00
Good for: consumer-pro video cameras, mirrorless, lighting equipment, tripods, gimbals, sliders
Kungfu Camera, Koenji
Kungfu Cameras, formerly known as Void Lens, is a relative newcomer to the game and caters towards compact cameras and simple SLRS. Nothing high end or super fancy, it’s a no frills cute little shop with a girly hipster vibe. The staff don’t speak English but is super friendly. They also feature zines by local photographers and provide decent information about galleries and exhibitions. And they are in Koenji, which is a cool place to visit anyway.
Hours: Mon – Sun 13:00~20:00
Good for: Compact film cameras, entry-mid level SLRS, books and zines.
Sanpou, Gakugei Daigaku
Sanpou is another among the faded legends. It’s not what it used to be after being remodeled a couple years ago and has gotten all fancy looking but is still worth a visit. Prices are decent for both film and digital equipment and their reputation for reliable products is good. Their film selection is wide and eclectic and prices to be the most reasonable among physical stores in Tokyo.
Hours: Mon – Sat 10:00～19:00, Sun 10:30～18:00
Good for: New & used recent digital gear, 35mm SLRs, rangefinders, medium format, lenses, bags, accessories, film
Osawa Camera, Ebisu
Osawa in Ebisu is a good stop if you’re looking for old cine lenses and odd knick knacks like hoods, filters, spools, etc. They have an okay selection of compacts and SLRs but cater towards the more eclectic rather than the Nikon and Canon standards. They’ll have some older Japanese medium format cameras such as Asahi Pentax, Mamiya Press and Bronica as well. They also have a 1 hour color lab that I often frequent primarily because they can do color 120 film in an hour as well!
Hours: Monday – Sun 10:00～20:00
Good for: Cine lens, compacts, SLRs, accessories, film, film developing
GT Camera, Ebisu
GT is a relative newcomer to the game as well, arriving on the scene in 2017. Started by an ex-Sampou guy, the selection isn’t the biggest but prices are pretty competitive amongst shops on the west side. Inventory turnaround is fast since the good deals don’t stay on the shelves long. His English is limited but he is foreigner friendly and knows his sh*t.
Hours: Mon-Wed, Fri-Sat 10:30~20:00, Sun 11:00~19:00. Closed every Thurs and 2nd and 4th Wed of the month, holidays
Good for: Medium format, mainstream classic 35mm film cameras, vintage cases
National Photo, Harajuku
National Photo is one of the best labs in Tokyo but not many people realize there’s a second floor with used equipment for sale. Not a huge selection, but the prices for medium format lenses aren’t bad and they check their equipment very carefully. Every now and then there’s some pretty sweet rare stuff that pops up. They also rent out the latest pro equipment as well has having studio for rental.
Hours: Mon-Fri 9:30~18:30, Sat 9:30~17:00. Closed Sun, holidays
Good for: film developing, printing, film, medium format digital and film cameras, rentals, lighting equipment
Map Camera, Shinjuku
This place has become one of the driving forces in used cameras over the last few years, and they have a wide selection spanning the 4 floors of this building. They also have a large selection of their own goods. One of the good things about MAP is their selection, it is extremely impressive. But, they do not discount, ever. A plus is they do have staff that speak English. They also are pretty difficult when it comes to the trade-ins, often offering way below market or even offering nothing and telling you it is junk (when it isn’t).
MAP pretty much sets the prices for the market now, so don’t be surprised if the prices are pretty steep in there. The rangefinder section in the basement floor is incredible. Take your passport and a spare kidney.
Hours: Mon-Sun 11:00 -20:30
Good for: New & used recent digital, rangefinders, SLRs, medium format, straps, bags
This store in Shinjuku was opened off the back of the success of the Ginza store. Lemon sell cameras, but also watches, pens and model trains. They are a consignment store, which means that they are selling the cameras on behalf of their customers, so don’t be surprised if the prices are sometimes a bit insane. They do not check any of the items either, so their ratings are often wildly inaccurate. Lemon has a strict no returns policy, so it doesn’t matter if it breaks as soon as you have paid, too bad. The Shinjuku store is inside a little doorway and on the 3rd floor. Generally helpful staff but English is very limited.
Hours: Mon-Sun 10:30-20:00
Good for: Rangefinders, SLRs, lenses, bags, medium format
Chuuko Camera Box, Shinjuku
Box is an appropriate name, this place is tiny. You need to go downstairs and you will find an Aladdin’s cave of cameras. There is a lot of junk in here and it seems to be entirely populated by old men, but there are some real gems here. A great place to visit. Be quiet and don’t let them see you take pictures, they don’t like it. There is basically only enough space in here for a few of people, so don’t go as a big group. They are friendly here, if you speak Japanese. Practically zero English.
Hours: Mon-Sun 10:30-20:30
Good for: compacts, TLRs, quirky cameras
Shinjuku Used Camera Market, Shinjuku
Located next to a shoe shop and a tad hard to find. The entrance is concealed and hard to find, it is just a doorway. Go up the stairs to the second floor and it is there. At this museum-like used camera store, most products are brought in by customers and if they aren’t sold within two months, the price drops. You’ll find new and vintage models, as well as ‘junk’ items sold for parts. This place has a huge selection, but again it is a consignment shop, so they don’t check the goods. They are grumpy bastards in this shop and don’t seem to ever smile. No English is spoken here and there’s an uppity vibe in the air. I have spend a ton of money in there and they have never even bothered to talk to me. Go here to find unusual cameras and classic medium format gear.
Hours: Mon-Sun 10:00-20:00
Good for: Rare 35mm and medium format cameras, lenses
Kitamura Flagship, Shinjuku
Kitamura Camera opened this massive flagship store on prime Shinjuku real estate at the start of 2020 in anticipation of the Tokyo Olympics and hoped tourists would flock to this swanky new building. Alas, Sars-cov-2 had different plans. Now that Japan is open again, this is your chance to see this whopping store. With 6 floors of new & used cameras, along with a cafe & photography book lounge, the new location hopes to be a photography mecca.
The selection is incredible and the extremely rare fair is on the top floor Vintage Salon. White gloves only rare.
The selection is vast but prices are on the higher end on the scale to compete with Map Camera. Easily could spend hours here. For a more in depth look we made a video of it on Youtube which you can check out below.
Hours: Everyday 10:00 to 21:00 (except New Year’s Day)
Good For: Ultra-rare items, pretty much anything but not the cheapest
A.K.A Only Zeiss, as the name implies, this is the place to go for anything Zeiss. A bit tucked away from everything but if you’re looking for some more obscure Zeiss Jena stuff then your best bet is here. Friendly and knowledgeable but old-fashioned, their website is horrible and they charge an extra 5% for credit card purchases so cash is preferable. Also not many banks around, only convenience stores if you do need to run and get cash.
Hours: Tue-Sat 11:00-20:00, Sun and holidays 11:00-18:00, closed Mon
Tel: 03-5273-1932, 03-5273-1975
Good for: Zeiss Zeiss baby
Arrow Camera/ Garakuteya, Yotsuya
Arrow/Garakuteya is an underground classic and run by a father/son duo. Arrow camera, to the left up the stairs, is run by the father and is the buying arm where you bring your old dispatches to sell. Garakuteya, just across to the right of the stairs, is run by his son and where you go to purchase goodies. There’s no real need to go to Arrow unless you’re selling something. Pop into Garakuteya and you’ll be treated to a trove of gear to fish through. This is the place to go to for accessories and parts.
Hours: Mon-Tues, Thurs-Fri 10:00-19:00, Sun 10:00-17:00. Closed Wed, holidays
Good for: Nikon, Canon and other entry-level to mid-range Japanese SLRs, parts, filters, misc. accessories
Matsuzakaya Camera, Shinagawa
Matsukaya Camera is a bit out in the cut but if you’re visiting the Nikon Museum there’s no good reason not to swing by if you’re in the neighborhood. It’s located on the 4th floor of a pretty nondescript office building but worth the effort as their prices are very reasonable. Equipment condition varies but this is a good spot if you’re looking for beaters and users. A place for actual photographers, not so much for collectors. They also have a small selection of digital gear competitively priced as well.
Hours: Mon-Sat 10:00-19:00, Holidays 10:00-18:00, Closed Sun
Good for: Nikon, Canon, Olympus SLRs, lenses, misc. accessories
Popeye Camera, Jiyugaoka
Founded in 1978, Popeye Camera is a long established presence in the photography world. It’s only a small shop, but very full of products to choose from. As well as developing film, they sell all things photography: film, camera bags, straps, accessories, frames, albums and cutesy tape and stickers. Not the hugest selection of gear, they do have a cabinet with bang for budget SLRs such as Nikon FE, F3 or Canon AE-1, kinda catered towards the kawaii female photographer crowd.
Hours: Mon-Tu, Thu-Sun 11:00-19:30
Good for: Entry-level SLRs, compacts, straps, cases, cute knick knacks, album making material, film development
So that is the west side, or the best of the west. There are so many small stores that it is simply not possible to list them all, but this guide should give you some good pointers for finding what you need.
JCH & MN
Question. I am in need of a used Leica MP. It can be used but not abused. I like “brassing too”.
cell 949 521 0140
Drop me a line, I can find one for you without a problem.
All I can say is thank you for this guide, I purchased a Nikon FM3A this morning and a Nikon 50mm F1.2 both from map camera and both in near mint condition. The camera even came in it’s original box with all the bits and pieces. Also purchased film (Fuji Superia Premium 400) from Yodobashi.
Thank you for putting this information out there, without it guy’s like me would be lost in the labyrinth of Shinjuku.
Much appreciated…looking forward to Parts 2 & 3.
Oh man, I need to visit these shops….Bellamy, you must spend hours in these places!!! It would be almost impossible not too.
Now that is spooky timing, and potentially bad for my wallet. Visiting next week. Thanks!
I travelled around Japan mid last year and visited some of the stores you mentioned.
With my budget I mainly stuck to the “junk” sections of each but found some good rokkor lenses. 28mm and 135mm to fit either side of my 50.
In one of the junk stores the guy started servicing my camera (minolta srt) while I looked around. He also shared my excitement when I found a matching case for the 135. I was a bit lost in translation but that was my favourite store, cannot remember the name though, it was a junk store down the road a little from it’s main store, near a small bridge.
Top Camera in Nagoya was good too, a bit expensive but huge.
Top camera NAGOYA? I am amused that yr email about camera shopping in Japan and in nagoya in particular happened right after reading about the citys amazing festive photo parades…anyways: 1. Can I shop in English?2. Pay in trsvelers checks? It? And what are the chances of exchanging some lenses ( all NIKON analog, etc for others ( new or used?) If yu have the web site, cool. And thanks. I am in nyc so I have info for this part of the universe…I, too thought the article on Japan shopping was cool…is it really cheaper though to buy hap made cameras in Japan???will I save on taxes if I buy used upon returning here?
Thank you for sharing.
I might check out one of stores you posted when I go this summer in Tokyo.
I look forward to viewing next 2 parts.
Thanks for sharing the information Sir. Looking forward to the next parts in the series.
The Network of Kitamura is definitely awesome! Find the camera in their website, if it’s at Fukuoka you can have it sent to the nearest Kitamura branch for you to inspect and (probably) buy all within one week. It’s all Japanese though. You need to have the right tools (translators) in Chrome :-)
A note about Lucky camera :-) they do seem to give buyers duds but I have only experienced that once. Got a GIII QL with a snappy shutter. The following day, the shutter won’t fire :-) hahahaha All is well though, I know how to open up the camera. Got a junk Olympus at their bin from the recent Matsuya show … paid 500yen … it turned out to be an OK camera after replacing the batteries and applying some Ronsonol.
Camera AlpsDo has a junk bin where one can find slip on filters.
Would want to know how to do the trade in :-) I have an unused digital RF that could be put to use by somebody else. Maybe a future write up??
That is a good idea. I will give it some thought.
Bellamy, how about offering a link to a google map and/or Street View for each store? Not all of the sites you link have easy to understand maps. This would help those coming to Tokyo for the first time. Camera Box and the shop above the ABC shoe store is rather difficult to find on its own.
I made a map and included it. Perhaps I should have made the clicky button more obvious. I am building a map of all the places I know.
oii Mr.Hunt ;) all the links is in Japanese i cannot understand any of them!. LOL
Thank you for this — I am buying my first DSLR next week (probably Nikon) and have a couple of days off during Golden Week to look around. I had heard from a colleague that Shinjuku was better than Akihabara for cameras, so this was exactly what I was looking for to plan my trip!
Thanks a lot for sharing this. It helps me a lot when visiting Tokyo.
Hi, I read your article and this gave me some heads up. I might ask my cousin to buy me some of the lenses. however, do you know if they can ship products to other countries like in middle east through fedex courier or dhl?
thank you appreciate it.
Fantastic article. I will be in Tokyo in a couple of weeks and am looking to get my hands on a Fuji GSW 690 III. Do you know which store might stock such camera?
I saw a photo posted in one site (forgot which one) where it showed an aisle with a huge selection of film and a note saying it was in Shinjuku. Do you know which shops offer a huge variety of film selection in that area?
Thank you! :)
thank you for taking the time for this!!
Hi – Thanks for the info. Just a quick note to say I had a very good experience recently at Fujiya Camera. Despite it being a very busy Sunday afternoon, the salesman was very helpful and patient. English speaking is extremely limited there, so it wouldn’t be a great place for a newbie with lots of questions. Prices – New stuff was OK, but you can probably do better in the U.S. on Ebay or Amazon. Used prices were variable but most were good to reasonable. It was a bit challenging to find, but the whole neighborhood was an interesting, fun experience to get “lost” in.
Thanks for your contribution. I gathered a lot. I wish to buy a second hand (fairly used one) camera , probably a Pentax K series one, with a macro lens in addition to the standard kit it coms with.
Grateful if you can guide me further,
Thanks for loading all the great info into one post. I’ll definitely be kicking around these stores sometime soon.
I’m in Tokyo for a short 5 months and my kit lens on my Canon XTi is having trouble with its focus. Thought a quick fix would be to get a slightly nicer lens used, just a bit of an upgrade, before travelling around Japan and SE Asia when my school semester finishes up. My budget is flexible so long as it’s less than the cost of the new lens… Is there a store or two in the city you would recommend for this type of shopping?
The comment about finding the west exit from terminal was great! I’m pretty sure when I walked through the door of MAP I thought I was in heaven! It was hard to not walk out of there with a lens for the m9/m6, but having just picked up the x100s before stepping foot in there kept me from caving in lol.
I am in Japan for 3 months starting in early April and was looking to buy a X100s do you mind telling where you purchased it and the price ?
Hi! I have a different question. I am coming to Japan in a few weeks, and will be buying a new camera. However, do any of the stores offer to buy the old camera from you? I would like to get rid of my old Sony NEX5, does a possibility exist to sell it to some camera shop in Tokyo? Thanks!
Bellamy, thank you for this excellent article. I had a great time in many of these shops a few years ago.
HI, is there a camera “scrap yard” where i can find parts and replacement? thank you
Hi we have a 13-hour layover in Haneda on 6/14 and was wondering if you do shopping for us and we can pay for your service by taking you to sushi breakfast @ Tsukiji? :)
Thanks for the offer, unfortunately my service costs a bit more than breakfast:)
Buying digital camera on a bulk? wow. really cool. Japan has these stores on streets that can really attract many people.
So I am going back to Tokyo for 2 months to chill and shoot some photos for my photo project I am doing and wondering if you know somewhere that sells film in bulk for really cheap, I know yodobashi is cheapest as far as I can tell but when I say bulk I’m talking 10 rolls of ilford 400 delta for $30-$40 price range?
Greeting! i’m film maker. Do you happen to know somewhere in tokyo to find the video equipment thing?
Hey. I live in Tokyo and am hoping to trade in my canon 5d mk 2 with 2 lenses for a Leica mp(lightly used) do you know the best place to do that?
Thanks in advance :)
Hi Alan, any chance you’d be willing to sell your MK2 and lenses? I’m looking to upgrade from my 7d…. If so, let me know your price. Thanks, Rachel
I have a friend that is staying in Tokyo for a month or two, so i asked him to look around for an Olympus OM 4-Ti.
After reading camerajunky’s blog article on this camera i got the idea that it would be a challenge to come across such a camera, but it would probably be a tedious negotiation process with a happy ending i.e. good bargain. After reading this article and checking the shop’s websites i am confused. On the one hand, it might be easier to find all different kinds of cameras, accessories and rarities. On the other hand, the friendly and magical element of hunting such a beauty is no more, meaning, it is now a well defined business aimed for camera hunters which leads us, as for what i am concerned from the other side of the world, to overpricing; up to the point of matching the prices of similar cameras in Europe for example.
I have a some questions and i would really appreciate any opinion, help or suggestion.
First, based on the earlier observation, does the assumption of finding this particular camera in good conditions and low price still stands? Or was i wrong from the beginning? Is it worth it to ask my friend to undergo this search and buy operation or should i just go and get one from ebay for the same price or maybe cheaper?
Second, what would be a reasonable price for an Olympus OM-4 Ti in good conditions?
Hope to get some replies on this comment soon.
Have a good day,
I am not really sure why people think that Tokyo or Japan are suddenly going to present them with bargains as that has never really been the case. Sure you can strike it lucky sometimes, but most of the time you will pay market, which is at least comparable to the west, sometimes more. It has always been this way. What you get with Japan is quality. This is the only place in the world that I know of where you can find unused classic cameras in abundance.
It has always been a well defined business here, Japan is very good at that. But it is a well defined business with surprises and a selection that is completely unparalleled.
To be frank, you are not going to find this camera for a low price. It is an expensive camera, and the collectors well know it. So the prices are high. I am not going to tell you where to buy it from, but perhaps e-bay would be better if you are looking for a bargain (chances are it will be in poor condition though).
As for prices, I suggest you ask your friend to do a bit of research and to let you know.
Maybe because abundance is proportional to not expensive.
You are right, it is down to the camera condition.
thanks ! going there now !!
I stumbled onto ur blog when a tripadvisor user shared ur link as reply to a query.
There is sooo much info in here and thanks a lot for taking the effort to put all of it in one single place where ppl can refer to. I am definitely gonna share this blog a lot..
I am coming to tokyo in January and i am planning to purchase a used Nikon 70-200 f2.8 VR2. U have given an extensive menu for camera hunting but did not mention any places for lenses or more precisely used lenses. So where should i start fishing?
“New Camera” – ? might it be “Shinjuku Chuuko Camera Ichiba”? (ichiba stands for market)
“Chuuko Camera Box” – “Shinjuku Chuuko Camera Box”
I’m going to Tokyo in April. I’d like to visit the Nikon Store. I remember it from 15years ago however I don’t remember the location. It was a small shop on a corner. They had a nice selection of used Nikkor and NIkon. Do you know of any stores only dealing in Nikon? Sound familiar?
Hope you get to see this reply.
I think the Nikon shop you mean is “Miyama,” (see link above), in Shinjuku.
I was in Tokyo few days ago. I would like to share some news with you, JCH’s followers:
MAP Camera: impressive selection of Leica rangefinder cameras and lenses at very good conditions. One of all M camera types is at disposal of customer just to taste it! They have almost every other brand in the shop with clear tags for price, and camera conditions, one of the most (if not The Most) professional store for used cameras in Tokyo. Also a huge selection of used digital stuff. Go there also for Contax Gs and Voigtlander Bessas.
Camera Ichiba: probably my favourite shop; a lot of stuff and well displayed; very good prices (I had a very good deal here); big selections of Japan cameras and some German ones as well. NOTE: they don’t accept any credit card, only cash.
Chuuco Box: their cabinets are so filled of cameras that it could be very hard to understand cameras’ condition and position. I suggest to go there with clear ideas of what to buy, this is not the shop to go and look for inspirations, you’ll only get confused. If you’re looking for a particular item you may find a deal.
Kitamura: their selection is small compared to the other shops of Shinjuku.
Lemonsha: they have a better shop in Ginza.
Yokohama: if you are in Yokohama I would suggest Camera Ohnuki located on the main street between Sakuragicho JR station and Hinodecho metro station; a very nice shop with a big selection of every brand and some rarity; very friendly clercks and good prices.
Note: have a good amount of cash to be exchanged at the airpot: ATMs don’t accept foreigner cards! You may try at 7eleven and Japan Post ATM but there is no guarantee you will success!
Have a good time in Tokyo!
“The Shinjuku store is inside a little doorway and on the 3rd floor.”
3rd floor of what?
“Check the map to get a general idea of the location, but don’t worry, you will find it.”
What do you mean by “the map”? Just Google or something?
Well, if you read the article completely you will notice there is a link to a google map that I have created with the locations of all of the stores on this list.
“The entrance is concealed and hard to find, it is just a doorway. Go up the stairs to the second floor and it is there.”
Again, stairs and second floor of what?
Well, of a building. These places are not all that hard to find, they are concentrated in one small area.
Hi, I am coming to Tokyo in May. I am interested in buying a good set of binoculars, and was thinking of going for a really nice used set, hoping I can get something used that ismuch better than what I can afford new. I used to work in a camera shop and know that some also sell used binoculars. Would you have any suggestions for places I should go to please?
Hi. Do you have a couple shops you could suggest in Yokohama? Besides wanting to see great camera gear I am specifically looking for a camera bag, and would like to know if there is a place with a good selection to choose from. Thanks for the info!
Thanks for all this information. It has been a useful resource for my research in buying a Leica CL body. I had a number of places to visit yesterday, and I decided to buy from New Camera. As you say, they ARE grumpy; but also condescending and unhelpful. I wanted to check the focussing of the camera, and asked in my politest Japanese if they would put a lens on so that I could do so. Not possible, was the stern reply. But I noticed that another customer WAS allowed to; and the grumpy gits’ attitude changed markedly when doing so. Make of THAT what you will…!
Anyway, I chose the body I wanted, even though it stated that the meter didn’t work as it was within my budget. Because of their surly attitude I almost didn’t buy it, but I KNEW the meter was working when I checked, I thought “Bugger you, you arrogant sod, I’m getting this camera at half price because YOU didn’t check properly. Why should I care??” (I think he thought I wouldn’t know the “sunny f/16” rule, and wondered why I would buy a camera with a broken meter.) So the money I saved can be spent on film!!
Thanks a lot for this useful info! I went to nearly all of them and found all my stuff secondhand at Map Camera and New Camera. Happy :)
I was thinking of trading off some of my old Nikon MF lense at Map Camera. From your experiences, do they take in such items? I read from your site that “Map Camera – They also are pretty difficult when it comes to the trade-ins, often offering way below market or even offering nothing and telling you it is junk (when it isn’t)”
So is it worth for me to bring all my items to Map?
Good information. I have only one minor disagreement, it’s ok to ask for a discount, but you just need to do it in a smart way and work around to it. For example, if you’re buying a lens, after having a conversation with the clerk about the lens you are considering buying you can ask them to throw in something minor like a protective filter and sometimes you will succeed.
I am going to Tokyo planing to buy some camera gear and I really appreciate the effort and quality of this article. Thanks:-)
I just wanted to say thanks for this great guide. Visited Tokyo in April this year and took a tour around some stores ins Shinjuku. Never would have had a chance to see all those treasures without your informations. (^_^)
Hi Ballamy, thanks for the guide. Very impressive. In Tokyo this coming November with limited time available. Interseted in purchasing second hand Nikon AF 16mm f2.8D Fisheye Lens. Would appreciate your feedback on where I should concentrate my efforts. Thanks
Hi Bellamy and fellow camera nuts.
Here are my experiences after touring all of the Shinjuku and most of the Ginza stores:
Most impressive Leica presentation: Katsumido at Ginza.
Has some very interesting units.
Where I bought several things: Lemon at Ginza. People were very friendly and helpful. Interesting was also that asking whether a particular Micro Nikkor lens was okay, the salesman in the shop looked at it and said it was not good since it started to have fungus. It shows honesty, which I greatly appreciate. They had some nice leather bags for lenses, which are covered inside with velvet and cost very little money.
Where I bought most: MAP Camera at Shunjuku. For the new equipment I got they have the lowest prices. They have a very nice presentation as well and helpful personnel, who would try their best to understand and give answers. Within five minutes they were able to get a Japanese high-quality adapter for Hasselblad lenses on Nikon bodies out of their warehouse.
Where I got some yellow filters: Yodobashi.
Prices for second hand Leica equipment are more expensive compared to the European market, however I was able to see a total of 3 Summilux-M 1.4/35 aspherical, a lens which I have never seen other than in a book.
Another remarkable camera is the M6 in grey forge scale enamel paint.
A place to visit: the Leica Boutique in Ginza. They have a nice exhibition in their gallery. Their personnel is very nice and helpful, I have gotten a problem fixed on my Leica M(240) within ten minutes.
Thank you Bellamy for your guide, it is very helpful to find the right addresses and places.
Just want to say that this guide was pretty helpful when I was down in Ginza and Shinjuku last week. Picked up a decent camsay hi and maybe have a coffee and go street shooting in Roppongi or something.
Great review! Very helpful indeed. I need some information regarding MAP Camera store. Every price stated is base price + Tax. But it showed that tax included. As foreigners, do they sell items under base price only or do we (foreigners) have to pay the tax sum stated? Thank you very much (Dying to find this information and I found this treasure blog)
Hi there, I’m just looking for a Olympus TG-3 camera. I’m staying in Singapore and the price here is around SGD500 (should be around 45,240 Y) , not sure where to buy is more worth it?
Thanks in advance =)
A friend and I spent 10 days in Shinjuku, and the only shop I found was Lucky Camera. It is a relief in a way to hear that the staff attitude wasn’t just a one-off! I thought I’d broken some unwritten rule by, you know, entering the store. Glad I didn’t buy anything there, but I wish I’d seen this article two years ago when I was planning my trip.
I went to Lucky today, and there were two workers there, both middle-aged, one woman and one man. They were the sweetest! I couldn’t speak Japanese, and my Olympus A11 just broke a couple of days ago. I saw that they were selling a few of them there, so I asked them whether they knew where to fix them. They didn’t understand at first and called the owner, who spoke more english. Then they spent 20 minutes printing out google maps and trying to make sure i know where the Olympus service centre was. And then when I asked about the nearest 7-11 for ATM, the lady got her umbrella out (it was raining fairly hard) and was all ready to walk two blocks with me). I just wanted to put this here in case people reading this blog decides to skip Lucky.
Maybe it’s the owner that’s stand-offish? He sounded a little overly brisk on the phone. But the experience I had today was just wonderful. I walked away with a Yashica Half14. The meter is broken, but everything else seems fine so far, and it only costed 3500 Yen. I’m super thrilled. -w-
That is a really helpful article.
I am looking for some Helios lenses but have no idea how easy or hard they are to find in tokyo. Does anybody know if there is any chance to find a used one in tokyo? Any shop recommendation?
Thanks for any help and information!!!
Interesting and inspiring text. I am planning a trip to Tokyo, in June, just for cameras. I am looking for a high end camera, Pentax 645Z. If I have done my calculations correctly, it will be much less expensive than at home.
(¥ 833.310 -10% “point” discount -8% VAT ≈ ¥ 690.000 yen)
My Japanese does not exist and the easiest page to copy paste into Google Translate was Yodobashi. Do you think they have a medium format in stock, or should I pre-order it?
I read some reviews about camera shopping in Hong Kong and there were some problems with fraud. Is Tokyo a safer place?
Thank you for spreading your knowledge!
Hi Danny, in the absence of another answer, you’ll probably find most things in stock somewhere… just a matter of where. Language is not too much of a problem if you know what you are after. I would suggest that you have makes, models and other numbers written down though. Most Japanese read English (with varying abilities) but probably won’t understand spoken English – that’s certainly my experience around the camera shops. I should say that I live in Tokyo and am still very much a beginner in Japanese. Hope you have a good trip, Mike
Hi!, May i know do you have sell Nikon Q & Nikon S for 2nd hand.
Can you send me the price?
Thank You! You Have a nice day.
Hi , I am after a Kodak Dcs Monochrome . Any luck for that in Tokyo?
Do any of these shops preferably shinjuku sell sony vx1000s? or am i needing to try my luck to find a good video camera browsing?
Hey Bellamy! I wanna thank you for this guide, it made my camera hunting way easier than I expected! I got a Nikon F3 from Chuuko Camera Box and it’s awesome. I’ll coming back to Tokyo this November, maybe you can suggest a place where I can get a Pentax 645n and a couple of lenses for it.
oh man – this collection of information is amazing – you saved me at least two days of research – more to to snap in the streets … respect!
thanks for the guide, I am going to tokyo next week and i am finding it so useful! I am italian, currently living in Taipei, and here prices for photography stuff are not so good as I thought. I am willing to find in tokyo a used Nikon DF and a Tamron 15-30 2.8 (or a used nikkor 14-24). Will I have a chance? Any advice?
So much info! Thank you for doing this!! I’m in Tokyo at the moment, staying in Shinjuku. I have strolled around a little, I am trying to find the Pentax k1000 but no luck yet. I have only been to map camera and another store which I am not too sure of the name. Do you happen to know if I can find one around Tokyo? Thanks!
Realty Andy? Talking about respect…
Wow, I sure will have good use of this map next week.
Does anyone happen to know if some of these stores are open on a Sunday?
Hello, just a quick Qs . I have notice the sales prices include tax, do you still have to pay duty once it comes into the UK?
Thank you very much for such a excellent guide!
It was a great help!
It is a great post and very informative! Thank you a lot!!!
I going for my second trip to the north part of Japan on the next week. But before I leaved the Tokyo, can I ask where I can search for some parts for Rolleiflex cameras: such as mirrors and accessories?
Thanks again for what you did!!!
Great article thanks.
Just wondering where you would go for Nikon Lenses. Looking for a 18-200 VR second hand if possible. Thanks. I’m also looking for a small 25mm wide angle.
Great and helpful article, really loved visiting Chuuko Camera Box.
I was in Japan last week and went to Fujiya Camera and was deciding between two lenses (both 35mm) but different apertures though the same price. I was going to get the faster one but the staff checked the back and he told me it was better not to get that one as the aperture is slower/stiffer (he flicked a little lever at the back that the lens have to open the aperture and it was a little stiffer than the slower lens). I was thinking, how is that going to affect anything? Once you set the aperture it doesn’t change, only the camera shutter moves? I tried to ask this in Japanese and he told me it will tend to get overexposed. In my confusion I ended up getting the slower lens but thinking back I realise he was talking crap and assumed I didn’t know how the camera works. Needless to say I won’t be going back to Fujiya Camera again.
Greetings from the wilds of Chiba
Saw your caution on trade-ins at MapCamera.
I have three Canon EF ‘L’ lenses I want to trade in on the Canon EF 200-400 f/4L IS USM with the internal 1.4X Extender.
They are the EF 180 F/3.5 Macro, the EF 200 f/2.8L and the EF 400 f/2.8L IS USM Version One with hard shell carrying case. Hate to get screwed on the trade-in there. All lenses are in excellent condition. Do you recommend an alternative to MapCamera?
Jeez Loueez, the people commenting here are such morons that it must be paradise for any genuinely intelligent person who wants to find a deal in Tokyo. If the commenters are the “competition”, no wonder the shop owners are grumpy. Ha ha.
Thank you for this guide and for the numerous other articles you’ve written. They’re always thoughtful, concise, and honest.
Traveling to Tokyo in September and will be in search of a Fuji Natura Classica. Do you have any advice/things I should look out for when shopping for it? Best places you think I’d find one?
I recently purchased an Anba 4×5 Field Camera (made by Ikeda), but have not yet purchased a lens for it. (I’ve been using a 150 lens on loan for the semester from City College in San Francisco,) I’ll be in Tokyo next month and am interested in purchasing one or more lenses, but I know very little about what’s available, quality, etc.
Do you have any recommendations for a set of lenses (say 90, 150, 210)? The camera takes a Technika lens board. Where would you recommend going to shop for them? Used is fine, but I want to buy lenses I know are in good condition.
Thanks for your Content
i will to Japan this new year (2017) so i need to buy Mamiya 6mf or 7 .
Do you know the price , mean standard price ?
I take back what I said about Fujiya Camera. I went again and everything was good and had some stuff checked. Though still not as friendly as the smaller shops
Hi Bellamy, this is a super handy guide.
I am a filmmaker not a photographer, so I would love to know if you have come across any stores that may stock Super 8 Cameras?
Hi Bellamy, I have a quick question regarding asking for discounts. in the previous page, you said
“Oh, and haggle. If you are a tourist then you automatically get 5% off (tax free). But you can get more. Almost all items in the store have points available for point card holders. If you are a tourist then you don’t need or want these points. You can get them to know these off the price for larger items, especially if you have cash. And this could net you up to 10% more off in some cases. Don’t be afraid to ask. Shy kids get no sweets.”
but in this page you said don’t ask for discounts, can you please clarify what I should do when I visit a store.
Thanks for the comment. It was so long ago that I wrote this.
I guess the best policy is to feel the situation. If it feels like they might be receptive to a discount then perhaps ask.
hola, estoy buscando una fuji x30 nueva en color plata como un loco por todo el mundo pero no consigo encontrarla. Alguna sugerencia de donde podria buscarla.
Found all of the stores listed in Shinjuku within half an hour, and I was 100% rewarded for my efforts in burrowing to these stores. Picked up a Nikkor-H 85mm 1.8 in brand new condition at a price I’m pretty happy with for a (40+year old) lens. Thanks very much for your help in this article.
Say.. Does anyone know of places in Tokyo area that cleans out the cameras… I have several that have dust particles inside the lens casing which drives me nuts..
I live in Japan and recently I have got into photography specially film types, I’m not sure what you call it. So I’m planning to buy Leica M6 but the price is just so high but I want to own one and use it. I don’t mind if it is used as long as it functions well and is in a good quality.
I can’t really afford the full price because I’m a student and I don’t have that much money and neither my parents unfortunately but I really want to buy one.
Can you please guide me where I can buy one from and forward me some reliable sources?
Thank you so much for your time.