Gear consolidation - Anyone else thinking about it?

Jonathan F/2

Veteran
Aug 21, 2011
Los Angeles, USA
Currently my main kit consist of Sony A7III mirrorless bodies and Nikon D750 DSLR bodies. I feel fortunate being able to run two separate systems, but eventually I want to consolidate due to the current pandemic. Currently I use my Sony bodies for portrait work and my Nikon bodies for event work. Sony excels with portrait work, legacy lens adapting, excellent eye-AF and just having more affordable/compact native primes. Nikon DSLRs excel due to instant response, better low light performance when using flash (in pitch dark conditions w/infrared light) or stopped down shooting off a tripod and having cheaper DSLR pro zooms and fast telephoto prime lenses. The Z6 would of been the natural evolution, but the expense of XQD storage, Z mount lenses being more expensive, lack of 3rd party options and so-so performance with the FTZ adapter are all turn-offs.

I find consolidating to either system fully leaves me with gaps. If I go all Sony I can add an A9, but I feel I'll miss some of the DSLR strengths. If I go all Nikon I could add a Z6 or switch out my D750 bodies to a D850, but I'll lose out on Sony native lens advantages and access to their better mirrorless AF tech. Decisions!

I know 1st world problems, but anyone else with multiple systems always debating on trying to streamline their kit? :D :p
 

gryphon1911

All-Pro
Feb 6, 2015
Central Ohio, USA
Andrew
If I did not work as a photo professional, I would probably just run a Fuji X system.

However, I need the performance of the Nikon's for the sports and event work I do.
I think we are probably a good 5-10 years away still for there to be a mirrorless system that can do the sports work of a DSLR....so I will be running a dual system for quite some time.

I would love to be with one system but that still is not feasible.

Good luck on the quest, I hope you are able to get to where you want to be.
 

bartjeej

Hall of Famer
Nov 12, 2010
bart
^ it's not the sector of the market I care for so I'm not completely up to date on thia, but can't the Sony a9 series do stuff that rivals the speed focused DSLRs? No blackout EVF, good tracking AF, etc? And even if it's not quite there yet, i think 5 years is an unlikely long time, let alone 10...

I don't have that much gear to begin with due to a chronic lack of funds, but with currently available gear, I'd need 3 cameras to fully satisfy me; a waterproof compact, a large sensor, fast 35 or 50mm equivalent compact, and a high quality superzoom like the Sony RX10 series.

If someone released a waterproof camera with 1" sensor and a 24-200 equivalent lens at a constant f/2 or faster, that might just be all the camera I'd ever need ;-)

more realistically speaking, a waterproof large sensor compact (more modern and less expensive than Leica XU), or a waterproof phone with physical control dials (as if...), might reduce my camera desires to 2 models.
 

Jonathan F/2

Veteran
Aug 21, 2011
Los Angeles, USA
If I did not work as a photo professional, I would probably just run a Fuji X system.

However, I need the performance of the Nikon's for the sports and event work I do.
I think we are probably a good 5-10 years away still for there to be a mirrorless system that can do the sports work of a DSLR....so I will be running a dual system for quite some time.

I would love to be with one system but that still is not feasible.

Good luck on the quest, I hope you are able to get to where you want to be.
Part of me wants to consolidate so I can invest that extra cash more into either system. There are little things though like cheaper and more telephoto lenses to choose from on the Nikon DSLR side, but Sony has excellent wide angle primes and zooms covered. I also like Nikon's flash hot shoe, which is way more solid, while Sony's hot shoe is a flimsy accident waiting to happen. Yet Sony's eye-AF and focus accuracy is excellent, while Nikon's eye-AF feels like I'm driving a rental Chevy Malibu in automatic. Nikon's ergos are way better, but again those Sony primes are small and affordable.

^ it's not the sector of the market I care for so I'm not completely up to date on thia, but can't the Sony a9 series do stuff that rivals the speed focused DSLRs? No blackout EVF, good tracking AF, etc? And even if it's not quite there yet, i think 5 years is an unlikely long time, let alone 10...

I don't have that much gear to begin with due to a chronic lack of funds, but with currently available gear, I'd need 3 cameras to fully satisfy me; a waterproof compact, a large sensor, fast 35 or 50mm equivalent compact, and a high quality superzoom like the Sony RX10 series.

If someone released a waterproof camera with 1" sensor and a 24-200 equivalent lens at a constant f/2 or faster, that might just be all the camera I'd ever need ;-)

more realistically speaking, a waterproof large sensor compact (more modern and less expensive than Leica XU), or a waterproof phone with physical control dials (as if...), might reduce my camera desires to 2 models.
Sony's A9 is really cool, but Sony doesn't make lightweight phase fresnel telephoto primes like the 300mm f/4 and 500mm 5.6 PF VR lenses! In a way, I kind of want this camera war to settle and have the winners and losers established, that way I can go back to choosing one brand or the other, similar to the CaNikon days! :D
 

Jonathan F/2

Veteran
Aug 21, 2011
Los Angeles, USA
I think Nikon will get there eventually, just a matter of whether we are patient enough to wait.
With the camera market tanking right now, who knows what's going to happen especially with the current global situation right now. Actually the new Nikon 70-200mm 2.8 S looks pretty awesome and honestly I've been a bit hesitant to buy higher end Sony lenses, mainly because the Z glass is looking quite solid. Only problem is all this stuff cost so much! I'm actually using mostly Samyang AF glass on Sony now, which have been an amazing value. Yet Tamron is knocking out a few cool lenses as well with their 70-180mm 2.8 and 28-200mm 2.8-5.6 glass.

I wish I could just own everything!
 

gryphon1911

All-Pro
Feb 6, 2015
Central Ohio, USA
Andrew
With the camera market tanking right now, who knows what's going to happen especially with the current global situation right now. Actually the new Nikon 70-200mm 2.8 S looks pretty awesome and honestly I've been a bit hesitant to buy higher end Sony lenses, mainly because the Z glass is looking quite solid. Only problem is all this stuff cost so much! I'm actually using mostly Samyang AF glass on Sony now, which have been an amazing value. Yet Tamron is knocking out a few cool lenses as well with their 70-180mm 2.8 and 28-200mm 2.8-5.6 glass.

I wish I could just own everything!
And on top of that, looks like Tamron is going to go native Z mount here soon.
It’s probably only a matter of time before Sigma and Tokina do as well.
I agree, I wish I could own everything, so I might need to start playing the lottery so I can just buy as I please.
 

AndyH44

Top Veteran
Torn between my Fuji X and M43 systems. Really love the Fuji bodies and lenses (own 5 different bodies right now), but the Lumix has so many features that are useful but not used often. IF I had to have only one system, the nod goes to .............






FUJI :2thumbs:
 

gordo

Veteran
Jul 6, 2017
Arizona
Gordon
I keep waiting... and waiting... and waiting...

...for info from Fuji, Nikon, and Pentax.

If I make a decision right now, good chance I'll regret it once info is released on the specs of future gear in the development pipeline right now.

All three systems have pros and cons, for me. I would love to get back to one system, but have a feeling that it won't turn out that way.

Regardless, there will be reductions in the amount of gear I have going forward. Just need good info to make the best decision.
 

Jonathan F/2

Veteran
Aug 21, 2011
Los Angeles, USA
Another way to look at this. How many critical shots would you miss if you went all Nikon? And how many would you miss going all Sony? If the answer to either is only a few. Then ask yourself if missing those few are something you can live with?
Sony AF tech and lens selection up to 200mm is where they shine. Nikon DSLRs are rock solid, Nikon PF telephoto primes are game changers and the Z bodies feel good in-hand, performance is solid with the latest FW, but you need native Z lenses to really unleash the potential (which cost more $$$)! Nikon's flash system is excellent as well, something Sony isn't that great with unless you like using off-camera 3rd party strobes.

It has more to do usability and budget aspects of each system. In fact I don't think I'll save money consolidating to either system. I guess I'm trying to figure out how I can free up cash to get new gear! :roflmao:
 

Jonathan F/2

Veteran
Aug 21, 2011
Los Angeles, USA
Torn between my Fuji X and M43 systems. Really love the Fuji bodies and lenses (own 5 different bodies right now), but the Lumix has so many features that are useful but not used often. IF I had to have only one system, the nod goes to .............

FUJI :2thumbs:
I keep waiting... and waiting... and waiting...

...for info from Fuji, Nikon, and Pentax.

If I make a decision right now, good chance I'll regret it once info is released on the specs of future gear in the development pipeline right now.

All three systems have pros and cons, for me. I would love to get back to one system, but have a feeling that it won't turn out that way.

Regardless, there will be reductions in the amount of gear I have going forward. Just need good info to make the best decision.
I used to only shoot with Nikon, but then dabbled into mirrorless and that cascaded into trying everything else, now putting me in a two-system situation! Also Samyang messed me up with their budgeted fast primes of which I now own 5 Samyang AF lenses and a Samyang USB dock. In fact their lenses work better than native Sony glass, because I can actually focus tune them to perfection!
 

gordo

Veteran
Jul 6, 2017
Arizona
Gordon
Most likely I'll continue to use multiple systems, but with much less gear.

I'll be keeping some of my Fuji stuff. My X100F and X-H1 will stay. I have a handful of m-mount glass that works really well on the X-H1, might also keep the 16-55 and 90. Remaining gear is awaiting a decision.

I'll most likely keep my K-1 and FA Limited lenses. Possibly a dedicated lens for stitched landscapes, and maybe one for astro. Remaining gear is awaiting a decision.

The Z6 and Nikon is a wild card. I really like the camera. Better ergos than Fuji, but not quite as good as Pentax, about the same size as the X-H1. But, I don't like using adapted glass on the Z, and the EVF manual focus implementation is a few steps behind Fuji IMHO. I have so little Nikon gear that either it will all go, or I'll have to make a major investment.

Biggest issue for me is wildlife and airshows. Nikon has the better selection of modern tele primes, and I believe the Z AF performance works better in those areas than Fuji or Pentax. Fuji does work well enough I can use it for those, but recent comments by a Fuji regional manager regarding future releases of tele primes leaves me thinking it is a dead end. The upcoming Pentax APS-C might be a big enough improvement in AF performance I could get the body and see how well it works with my existing glass. Even if I have to get the 150-450, it'll be a lot less expensive than moving back to Nikon.
 

Jonathan F/2

Veteran
Aug 21, 2011
Los Angeles, USA
The Z6 and Nikon is a wild card. I really like the camera. Better ergos than Fuji, but not quite as good as Pentax, about the same size as the X-H1. But, I don't like using adapted glass on the Z, and the EVF manual focus implementation is a few steps behind Fuji IMHO. I have so little Nikon gear that either it will all go, or I'll have to make a major investment.
It's the little things that never get mentioned when comparing different brands. For example, the Nikon Z EVF is extremely nice when viewed at regular size, but when you zoom in, it becomes choppy. On the other hand, the Sony EVF on the A7 III is a bit antiquated, but when manually focusing while zoomed in, it's smooth with no lag. It actually makes using manual lenses on Sony much nicer, but if using full AF lenses, the Nikon EVF is a joy to use!
 

tonyturley

Hall of Famer
Nov 24, 2014
Scott Depot, WV, USA
Tony
After my extensive gear purge last year, I don't have that much gear, but I still find myself with 3 systems: Fuji X, Olympus m4/3, and Fuji X30. I really, really like the X-E2, despite its lack of tilt screen, and I'm currently using only an old Olympus Pen F film lens with it. I also like the m4/3 Pen F, although I'm not a fan of the fully articulating screen. I have the SCP set up the way I want, so I rarely menu dive. The X30 is the camera I grab when I just want to sling a camera over my shoulder for some minimalist photography. While its IQ lags behind the Pen F and X-E2, the difference isn't staggering. Part of me says I should sell 2 out of the 3 systems and really and truly limit myself to one platform. After all, I'm a hobbyist, and photography never has been and never will be a paying proposition. Still, I hesitate. My gear takes up such little room in my house, and I could probably pack all the photo gear I own in a bag and it wouldn't weigh as much as one of the huge DSLRs some people use.
 

gordo

Veteran
Jul 6, 2017
Arizona
Gordon
As a hobbyist, my biggest gear problems are 1) how it fits my hand/ finger size and shape, 2) how the viewfinder works with my eye, and 3) the subject matter I enjoy shooting. Unfortunately for me, I haven't been able to find that one system that does everything well enough to be "the one".

Years ago I was perfectly happy with an SLR and the 35/ 85 combo. Until I realized I enjoyed shooting aviation, and then wildlife (mainly birds). Unless I stop shooting aviation and wildlife, it will be difficult to go back to just a camera and a few primes.

IMHO, for me as a hobbyist, drawing gear down to levels that remove something from my ever-shrinking list of stress relief/ relaxation/ enjoyment just to reduce gear, won't be helpful for my overall well-being as I continue to age. I need to maintain some outlets for stress. All bets are off if I need money for food, medical treatment, etc...
 
Apr 18, 2014
Boston Burbs
David
I could just say Hi Jonathan... But for everyone else that hasn't been over on the Cafe together for the last 15 years.....

........Nikon DSLRs excel due to instant response, better low light performance when using flash (in pitch dark conditions w/infrared light) ......
Event work is work and Nikon gear and flash systems just work. I don't make work harder than it has to be and do everything I can to be able to concentrate on what's going on and not think about my gear. Just consider the pain of mirrorless battery life. I typically took 1,500-2,000 shots at an event, typically 1/3-2/3 on the two bodies I used. Sometimes I changed the battery on one of them if I felt like it and it showed under 1/2 full.

If I needed to replace one of my event bodies? D850 or D780. I think the D780 has been underrated. If it were just and updated D750, it would still be pretty darn good. But adding Z6 like live view to an updated D750? There were plenty of times I would have loved to use my D750 on a tripod with live view, but it really sucked so I rarely bothered.

So fantastic D850 with more MP than you really want when shooting 1,000 - 2,000 images or the son of a D750 and Z6?

If I didn't need a replacement? Z6 or Z7, both have their advantages and either with the 14-30 + 24-70 f/4s would make a really nice kit in an ONA Bowery. This could also give you a bit of system separation. The DSLRs for work and events with the Z for fun, family, and whenever live view would be helpful.

And on top of that, looks like Tamron is going to go native Z mount here soon.
It’s probably only a matter of time before Sigma and Tokina do as well.
I agree, I wish I could own everything, so I might need to start playing the lottery so I can just buy as I please.
Tamron could be interesting, @Jonathan F/2 what lenses does Tamron have that might fill your needs if they can easily swap them over to Nikon ........

Another question about what's available and what's coming. Nikon has plans to add more to the Z line and with other players like Tamron coming in things look good. But has Sony (or anyone making E mount glass) announced plans for anything like the 300mm f/4 or 500mm f/5.6 FE?

Another way to look at this. How many critical shots would you miss if you went all Nikon? And how many would you miss going all Sony? If the answer to either is only a few. Then ask yourself if missing those few are something you can live with?
@Jonathan F/2, you do a GOOD bit more portrait and street stuff than I ever did. But for me, missing anything at an event was always a bigger issue.

Torn between my Fuji X and M43 systems. Really love the Fuji bodies and lenses (own 5 different bodies right now), but the Lumix has so many features that are useful but not used often. IF I had to have only one system, the nod goes to .............

FUJI :2thumbs:
And I went m4/3 for body / lens handling consistency.
 

drd1135

Zen Snapshooter
Jul 13, 2011
Lexington, VA
Steve
Life is easier as an amateur. What is this “flash” of which you speak?
I have three systems right now, Fuji (XH1 and X100v), Sony (A7Riii and A6000), and a bunch of older mu43 stuff that’s not worth selling. So, it’s Fuji or Sony. The problem is that the XH1 gives me some nice telephoto lenses but I love the raw files I get from the A7. I suspect I will keep both, with the 35,45, and 85 for the Sony and the 27, 35, 60, and 55-230 for the Fuji. As you can tell, I’m not a big wide angle guy. If I did look at another lens, it would probably be the Fuji 16-80 f4 as a travel lens.
 

tonyturley

Hall of Famer
Nov 24, 2014
Scott Depot, WV, USA
Tony
I just spent about 30 minutes scanning through some of my work over the past few years. The evidence is pretty clear that I have tried a lot of different cameras, sometimes swapping every few months. Since I always buy gently used and look for good deals, it hasn't hurt my wallet, and I've had a lot of fun exploring different gear. Both Fuji and m4/3 have had large roles in my photographic exploits, and from an IQ standpoint, I can't tell a difference without looking at EXIF data. Like Andy, I have a hard time choosing between the two, so I'm not even gonna try. I'll just continue using whichever camera suits my goal or mood at the time.
 

Jonathan F/2

Veteran
Aug 21, 2011
Los Angeles, USA
I could just say Hi Jonathan... But for everyone else that hasn't been over on the Cafe together for the last 15 years.....



Event work is work and Nikon gear and flash systems just work. I don't make work harder than it has to be and do everything I can to be able to concentrate on what's going on and not think about my gear. Just consider the pain of mirrorless battery life. I typically took 1,500-2,000 shots at an event, typically 1/3-2/3 on the two bodies I used. Sometimes I changed the battery on one of them if I felt like it and it showed under 1/2 full.

If I needed to replace one of my event bodies? D850 or D780. I think the D780 has been underrated. If it were just and updated D750, it would still be pretty darn good. But adding Z6 like live view to an updated D750? There were plenty of times I would have loved to use my D750 on a tripod with live view, but it really sucked so I rarely bothered.

So fantastic D850 with more MP than you really want when shooting 1,000 - 2,000 images or the son of a D750 and Z6?

If I didn't need a replacement? Z6 or Z7, both have their advantages and either with the 14-30 + 24-70 f/4s would make a really nice kit in an ONA Bowery. This could also give you a bit of system separation. The DSLRs for work and events with the Z for fun, family, and whenever live view would be helpful.


Tamron could be interesting, @Jonathan F/2 what lenses does Tamron have that might fill your needs if they can easily swap them over to Nikon ........

Another question about what's available and what's coming. Nikon has plans to add more to the Z line and with other players like Tamron coming in things look good. But has Sony (or anyone making E mount glass) announced plans for anything like the 300mm f/4 or 500mm f/5.6 FE?


@Jonathan F/2, you do a GOOD bit more portrait and street stuff than I ever did. But for me, missing anything at an event was always a bigger issue.


And I went m4/3 for body / lens handling consistency.
Part of me is thinking, event work and other types of photography will need to adapt to the current global situation. In fact I just did a portrait session a few days ago, and I used to think 85mm was good enough pre-pandemic, but now I'm leaning towards maybe 105mm or 135mm instead for safer working distance. While my current kit is fully situated to cover most types of photography, maybe it's time to rethink focal lengths and what types of photography will be sustainable for the future?
 

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