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Old 09-03-2012, 07:54 PM   #1
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Has anyone here ever switched systems (Brands)?

How difficult was the transition? I'm strongly considering switching to CaNikon. I have more equipment in with Pentax for repair and really dont want to spend $500 a year on repairs. What is the reliability like with the Canon L series? or Nikons higher end glass? (Nikon has so many lens brandings I have no idea what it is). I'm gonn give Pentax until Photokina to change my opinion.

All I use on my K5 and Kr are the DA* lenses. I dont have any Limiteds in the line up. But I figure I can walk into a Canon 5D Mark III system with 2 L series lenses for my kit... internal debates suck sometimes....
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Old 09-03-2012, 08:28 PM   #2
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We switched brands late last year after 10 years of Canon dSLRs. Camera bodies, lenses, flash, filters, batteries, remotes, tripod clamps, ... it quickly gets expensive! The transition was not difficult apart from the $$$. The worst part was that Canon and Panasonic lenses zoom in the opposite direction, it's amazing how used to something we get.
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Old 09-03-2012, 11:45 PM   #3
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The worst part of switching is the loss of money due to the buying and selling. I switched from Nikon to Sony but I didn't have too much invested in lenses at the time. I think you can have problems with any electronic. It's not just brand specific. I hear lots of good things about the Pentax K5 along with some bad. I have also heard bad things about the D7000 and New D800 over on the DPReview forums. The 1 thing that was always pushing my away from Pentax were the complaints of focus issues and quality control of the K5 like the report of sensor spots.
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Old 09-04-2012, 12:03 AM   #4
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I switched many years (film) ago from Minolta to Pentax. Thanks to some deals I didn't get hurt financially. When I went from film to digital, I stayed with Pentax because of the legacy lenses we had acquired. As far as camera operation, I have used Nikon and Sony DSLR's. As soon as I figured out how and where on the camera to make adjustments, everything was fine. After using those two brands, I was very happy to return to my Pentax. Its just a matter of adjusting to what you have in your hand.

Note: The sensor stain issue on the K5 was resolved a very long time ago. Pentax took responibility and fixed the issue rather quickly. It was no different than the oil stains on the Nikon 7000 that caused a minor uproar in the Nikon community.

Personally, I really don't worry about things going wrong with my cameras.
Don't get me wrong, I would prefer they not break, but I used to work on multi-million dollar military fighter-attack jets and they broke all the time. We didn't throw them away because a computer or other component broke.
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Old 09-04-2012, 12:10 AM   #5
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Thanks GP, I love my Pentax gear, its all very intuitive and are very comfortable in my hands. But I am having Motor failures in my lenses, I know it sounds selfish but if I wanted manual lenses I'd buy Leica lol! I'm really strongly considering the Canon 5D Mark III, Im pretty sure I can get a new body, 70-200 L, 24-70 L, and have to kick in a bit for for an UWA...
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Old 09-04-2012, 09:50 AM   #6
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I switched from Canon to Nikon when I went from film to digital. Since my Canon lenses wouldn't work with the Canon DLSRs, I went with the one that had the features I wanted in my price range.

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Old 09-04-2012, 10:28 AM   #7
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I've not switched since getting into DSLRs, but I did go from Pentax SLRs to Canon SLRs (though I kept the Pentax system too) back in film days. I then went from those two to Sony DSLRs, and have had Fuji & Canon P&S models too. I'm not a brand loyalist at all - I'd switch in a heartbeat if it meant getting a system that was a better match to my needs. But I'm definitely motivated to stay with my current system if it works well due to a good collection of lenses that would be expensive to replace. Still - I'd do it if I needed to.

I can't say whether another brand is going to have less problems or be more reliable for you. Canon and Nikon have excellent service for professionals, but that's reserved for professional bodies and high end lenses - the amateur level stuff doesn't have any special service different than any other. The advantage if any with the Canon or Nikon service is that they are much more common, and therefore more places can service them often in closer proximity. I wouldn't say their service nor reliability is necessarily any different from Pentax - but the proximity and availability may give them an edge in some regards.
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Old 09-04-2012, 11:18 AM   #8
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I've never really switched brands, but I use multiple brands. at least with 35mm SLR's. And like others said, once you learn what controls are where and get a feel for the camera that's really all there is.

I can tell you that I've heard of a number of AF motor failures on lower end Canon and Nikon lenses. But I'd say the same about Sigma and Tamron lenses. I do wonder if some of that is people who are manually focusing without turning the AF motor off on lenses that do not have full time manual focus (I know more than a few who have killed thier Canon 50mm f/1.8 this way). Canon L series lenses usually do have full time manual focus, so that's not an issue with them. Not sure which Nikon lenses have it.

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Old 09-04-2012, 08:47 PM   #9
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Thanks all for the responses!
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Old 09-05-2012, 12:51 AM   #10
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The Canon 5D is of course full frame. The D6 is also on the way and the Nikon D600. Both full frame and less money (perhaps). A very nice upgrade...
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Old 09-07-2012, 01:02 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by photo_chick View Post
Canon L series lenses usually do have full time manual focus, so that's not an issue with them. Not sure which Nikon lenses have it.
Any Nikon AF-S lens has manual override available.

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Old 09-07-2012, 06:54 AM   #12

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Originally Posted by SplashMo View Post
The Canon 5D is of course full frame. The D6 is also on the way and the Nikon D600. Both full frame and less money (perhaps). A very nice upgrade...
I don't THINK the 5D is FF. I know the MK II and III are, but not the basic 5D.
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Old 09-07-2012, 12:34 PM   #13
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I made the jump from Olympus to Nikon several years ago and these are the things I recommend keeping in mind:

- When making the switch, don't focus on simply the camera body that you want. You need to factor in the entire system: body, lenses, flashes, shutter release cables, etc. Look at the big picture at how the items you need will work together.
- The camera body is the most dispensible part of the entire equation. Camera bodies don't retain their value very long and are always changing and improving. A smart photographer will spend less on the body initially if that means getting the lenses and accessories they will want long-term.
- Lenses are a long term/permanent investment and retain their value. I would recommend making your first review of the brand you want based on the lenses you will want to use initially and long term. If you think you may want to eventually go with full frame, go ahead and plan on purchasing full frame compatible lenses at the focal lengths you want instead of saving a little money now and purchasing crop lenses and have to replace them later.
- Purchase smartly, purchase once. Not only do you want to take the long view on the purchase of lenses, treat the other accessories the same way. If you need a tripod, buy a good quality one initially. If you buy an ND filter, purchase the largest diameter size you can and get step down rings so you don't need to duplicate them in the future.
- When buying a camera body, get one with two control wheels and built in auto-focus motor. The extra control wheel will allow you to easily work in manual mode with one working aperture and one working shutter speed. The built in motor will allow you to purchase older lenses inexpensively on the used market that will offer fantastic performance for low cost.

My recommendation, is I would look at purchasing a used camera body from the brand that has the lenses you will want to use. Again, bodies don't hold their value long and are actually pretty easily repaired by the manufactuer as typically the shutter is the only part that needs maintenance.

Regarding the choice between Canon/Nikon, I again would not focus on the bodies. Focus on the lenses, accesories, and the functionality of their system. I chose Nikon for the following reasons:

- They had the 14-24mm that no other lens on the planet can match. I love using the wide angle and this lens has no substitute.
- Nikon's ergonomics and functionality made more sense to me. The layout of the buttons and dials along with their menu system just seemed more natural than Canon.
- The D700 just launched and had the low light performance and high dymanic range that Olympus's 4:3 sensor could never match.

By and large, Canon has more variety in lenses and had significant advantages until recently in terms of the high end telephoto market. This is largely why Canon has such a large footprint in the sports photojournalism field. Nobody wanted to change out their lenses, flashes and accesories.

Nikon's top of the line lenses are considered by many to be better than the comparable Canon; however, Nikkor's typically carry a higher price.

If I were getting ready to make the switch from an offbrand camera system to Canon/Nikon today, I would look for a used D700. With the D800 and the rumored D600 around the corner, used D700 prices have dropped considerably.
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Old 09-08-2012, 11:42 PM   #14
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great advice! I certainly have urchased the best of Pentax I think. Hunted out good deals and looked for what I want out of a system
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Old 09-09-2012, 04:08 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by JediMasterMatt View Post
If I were getting ready to make the switch from an offbrand camera system to Canon/Nikon today
I'm normally a very easygoing person of reason, but this statement of any camera system other than Canon/Nikon being "offbrand" is a little upsetting and derogatory. Pentax was founded in 1919 with Nikon in 1917 and Canon 1937. All companies have up and down periods. Pentax is not a johnny-come-lately company. There was a period of time when Pentax was the only camera to have. While I will admit our brand hasn't been as up as us Pentaxians would have liked, the K5 (if ratings can be believed) has been arguably the best APS-C on the market the last two years. There will be several (rumored to be nine) new announcements in the the next week prior to Photokina for Pentax. There are some exciting things that Pentax Ricoh Imaging has on the horizon!

If this was a mis-statment then I apologize for the rant.
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