I'm looking into this now to find out. I'll update this thread as I get info.
Keep in mind:
1: Reputation-exclusive items i.e. items that you can ONLY get with reputation (e.g. Resplendent Crown of Avarice, Opulent Triumvirate, Volatile Shock Trooper, etc.) do add to Collections when bound. The only thing about the Reputation-exclusive items is that they can't be unlocked account-wide in Collections, and even the character adding them can't claim additional copies.
2: Other Reputation items that are Reputation versions of old Cartel items (e.g. Mira's Combat Armor, Revan's Mask, Diplomat's Meditation Hoverchair, etc.) are likewise added to Collections when bound, and as these are Cartel items (or replicas of Cartel items), Collections treats them as such and lets you claim copies and unlock them account-wide.
3: Since Reputation replicas of Cartel items count as Cartel items, it is possible to mix them with "real" Cartel items. Personally, I got Revan's Chestplate, Robe and Sash from packs (I bought a lot of packs to get that sash), traded with another player to get the Gloves, and then bought the Mask from the Reputation vendor (I bought a lot of packs to get enough Reputation), equipped it all, and it was added to my Collections, from where I could claim additional copies and/or unlock it.
- This is how it has worked and does work with ALL Reputation vendors except for the new I.C.E. vendor.
- Why should some Reputation items (i.e. the Reputation-specific items such as Opulent Triumvirate) add to Collections (where you can't unlock them) if others (i.e. Cartel replicas) shouldn't? That would make the whole Collections feature even more confusing than it already is when there are items you can't claim copies of. Why even have them in Collections?
- Also remember that while Cartel items come from packs bought with money, you can buy them from other players, while Reputation items require Reputation and often Certificates which requires YOU to have bought several hypercrates of packs. Players who buy Legend-rank items from the Reputation vendors are your most loyal customers. They have paid you (BioWare) more money to get the item from a Reputation vendor than someone who bought it off GTN.