By Beth Ruggiero
Why I Switched from Sony to Olympus and How I Did It
I’m always looking for ways to improve my photography experience, and this summer, I honed in on something that had long been in my head – Olympus.
Those who know me well probably weren’t too surprised. I have a history of changing the game. I originally started shooting Nikon, but then added the early Olympus micro four thirds to my gear so that I could travel with less weight to China. I like Olympus so much that I bought the Olympus E-5, their four thirds (not micro four thirds) DSLR released in 2010. I did love that system but ultimately chose to pare down my equipment and shoot Nikon exclusively.
Then, about three and a half years ago, I made the big switch to Sony full-frame mirrorless. I sold all my Nikon gear and replaced it with Sony. I took a pretty big financial hit when I did that, but the Sony system worked so well for me. That is, until Olympus upped their game to the OMD EM1m2 and then the OMD EM1X. That got my attention, and I watched for about six months until last summer. Ron and I were attending the New England Camera Club Council (NECCC) annual conference at UMass Amherst in July, and I sat in some sessions with Olympus reps to learn the ins and outs of the cameras’ unique features. By the end of the conference, I had decided to make the switch and returned home with the OMD EM1X and a few lenses. I have not looked back.
There were a number of reasons I switched. Naturally, the lighter weight lenses were a big part of it, but that really was the icing on the cake, because it wasn’t until I was convinced that the image quality and functionality could replicate what I had with Sony. And it did.
Photographers often don’t take the Olympus system seriously because it uses a cropped sensor, smaller even than the APS-C sensors. I’m convinced Olympus knows this and, as a result, works to push the technology to the cutting edge to make their cameras stand out. Some of the features that sold me are:
- The best in-camera stabilization out there, which, when paired with one of the Olympus Pro lenses that has lens stabilization, gives 7.5 stops of stabilization
- In-camera live compositing – i.e., you’ll never stack star trails in post-processing again!
- In-camera focus stacking and focus bracketing
- In-camera 5-stop neutral density rendering
- Superior weather sealing
I could keep going, but you get the idea. And, by the way, you can shoot an 80mp image on tripod with the high-res image feature, or a 50mp image handheld.
Another added bonus is the cost of the lenses. A lot less than Nikon, Canon, Sony, etc. In making the switch, I came out even financially! I sold my Sony equipment privately, through Used Photo Pro (Roberts Camera), and on eBay.
My back is happy, my wallet is happy, and I, as a professional photographer, am happy.
Beth Ruggiero is an Instructor with Arizona Highways PhotoScapes