Precision Camera, the only remaining full service camera store in Austin opened a brand new, shiny store last week. Actually they moved from their old store to a new location 4 miles north on Anderson Lane. And what a difference. The old place was cramped and dark. The new place is light, airy and upscale, in a friendly and accessible way. The showroom is at least 2 1/2 times larger and now located in a place with ample parking.
I walked into their new digs last Saturday, a couple of days after the official opening. I saw Jerry Sullivan, the owner, and congratulated him. He was beaming like a proud Papa and he gave me tour of the entire place, including the back offices and the repair and print centers. The store now has the space for people to breath and congregate. Along the left side, a long counter with all the cameras available for personal demos. In the back left, a repair and equipment rental facility. To the back right, a comfortable lounge is positioned in front of a mini camera museum. And on the other side of the museum display, a 70 person classroom.
Jerry told me that traffic is up noticeably from the old location and, with all the additional space, you no longer feel like you are tripping over people or knocking into shelves. Gone is the dark cave like feeling, replaced by lots of natural light and natural wood tones. The place encourages people to linger and talk to other customers. And talk I did, for 2 1/2 hours. After Jerry’s tour, I ran into my friend, photographer and blogger, Kirk Tuck. We caught up for a while and even helped introduce the wonderful world of mirrorless to one of Kirk’s friends. Of course, Kirk was extolling the virtues of the Sony NEX line and I talked about my love for Micro 4/3.
It’s nice to live in a city with such a resource and I feel, more than ever, it will be the unofficial center of Austin’s photography world. If you live in the Austin area or visiting, you should stop by Precision Camera. Hope to see you there.