Leaving Nikon for Sony

Nikon D850 on left, Sony A7R IV on right

Nikon D850 on left, Sony A7R IV on right

For nearly two decades I have shot with the Nikon camera system starting first with slide film back in the early 2000s. Over the years I have been nothing but happy with the cameras I have owned. These include the FM2, F100, D200, D700, D4, D500, and the D850. The list of lenses is actually longer than this. However, the time has come for the sun to set on my time with Nikon.

Like many photographers the first time I heard about mirrorless cameras it felt like a gimmick. They were very slow to focus, the EVF was low resolution, shutter was laggy, the battery life was nonexistent, and they were tiny in the hand. So, I simply dismissed them as a good option for photography. Then recently I had a friend let me try their Nikon Z7 and I have to admit the camera was impressive. So much so I decided right then the switch to mirrorless would be sooner rather than later.

Both Nikon and Canon have stated the mirrorless is the future of photography and thus I began looking into the Nikon system. Why? Because it was always what I had owned. The new camera did not have the standard F mount but rather they had shifted to a new mount aptly named the Z Mount. This mean if I wanted native lenses I would have to start from scratch. Yes, they have an adapter to use all the F-Mount glass but using adapters really isn’t my thing. Because I was going to purchase a new camera and now would have to buy all new lenses for the native mount I felt it was time to consider the other brands. Canon had just came out with a mirrorless system as well but after looking into it there was not much difference than the Nikon. Finally, I took a look at Sony, after all they have been doing this “mirroless thing” much longer.

My first look was at the A7R III and I have to be honest, the camera did not feel great in the hand and the EVF was not as clear as Nikon’s Z7. The R3 was and still is a phenomenal camera however, I decided against it and went back to looking at the Z7. But then, Sony announced the A7R IV and so many of the features their customers complained about were fixed. Just to name a few the body was deeper for a better grip, you can change the focus indicator to red, the EVF had a new 5.7million dot screen, and the exposure compensation dial had a toggle lock. It seemed to me Sony actively took feedback from their customers and incorporated it into a new model. What a concept…

Ultimately the decision was made to go with Sony because of their innovation, attention to customer complaints, and their time in the mirrorless market. Couple with the constant firmware updates to provide a better user experience and you have a winning combination. They have had a few more years to work out some of the kinks just now finding their way to Nikon and Canon bodies. Are they perfect? No, absolutely not, and I know there are things about Nikon I will miss. However, when it comes to mirrorless cameras, they are the clear winners.

What do you think about my swap to Sony? Are you considering changing systems? If so, why?