We had a Sony HVR-Z7E camcorder serial #210958 stolen from our office in London in late August 2011. We are a charity so can ill-afford to lose equipment in this way.
Any information leading to its recovery will be treated with discretion.
Did they take any third party accessories (eg ext drive) as well? Sometimes it's the give away when they try to sell it all on ebay or Craig's list, et al.
They took 2 or 3 Sony NP-F970 batteries as well but no other accessories.
Do you recommend any ways of trying to monitor Ebay etc. because I can imagine if you asked someone for a serial number and they didn't respond there's not much you can do really...
You can set up a 'saved search' on Ebay to automatically notify you when things are listed.... even within certain criteria, e.g. in the price range £200 - £5000 (to avoid accessories sharing the same camera model description), whether items are new or second hand, even within a certain distance of your postcode (50 miles if you suspect the thieves are local). eBay will then email you (for a period you define, e.g. 1 month) with new listings whenever they fit your saved search criteria.
It's not so hard to get a serial number out of someone. If you ask them a whole load of sensible questions that make you seem keen, e.g. is there any cosmetic damage on the camera, particularly the LCD screen? what has it typically been used for filming, (e.g. weddings opposed to strapped to the front of a jeep!). If you take this approach and then slip in a question like 'can you give me the serial number so I can check it against the manufacturer recall list', most of the time they'll give it to you.
That's great advice, thanks.