From Sony to Nikon: A New Chapter as a DSLR Photographer


Throughout most of my career I've shot Sony.  Not long after the Sony A7 released, I traded all of my Canon equipment for the future of photography - or so I thought. It happened quickly and I fell hard. There were plenty of nights where you could have found me scouring the web for other Sony shooters, jumping into Facebook groups dedicated to the platform, or trying to meet up with like-minded individuals at conference. Despite all of this, I decided to make a change...

 Now, don't get this post mistaken: it's not a jab at Sony. In fact, I think Sony has made incredible strides in places where other manufactures are struggling. The A9 and A7RIII are beasts, albeit expensive. I've realized over the years that there was some things I missed from the standard DSLR, ultimately pushing me on to another system. These are some of the things that pushed me to trade my Sony equipment for a Nikon. 
Yeah, you read that correctly: Nikon. Now, I have to admit that I've never looked at a Nikon before. They always seemed different. It wasn't something that I could articulate, but for some reason Canon seemed like a more inviting brand. Anyway, the Nikon D850 was released a few months ago and it got a lot of press. That had me looking into the system a little more. Not ready to make the leap at that price point, I began looking at the D750, a still powerful camera in its own right. As I read specs, I began to wonder how it compared to the Canon 6D, a camera that I found unappealing. One thing that has always driven me crazy about my A7 is its lack of dual memory card slots. It wasn't until the newest generations that Sony began taking this important feature into consideration. 

With Canon's lack of memory backup, I felt that it wasn't ready for professional use and decided to keep moving. Then, I began looking into other Nikon models, many of which had the second card slot. The video options were nothing to write home about, but then again that was never really something that I used often. My journey took me on to look at the D810 and then finally stumble onto a great deal for the D800 - which I currently own. It was a leap of faith and I haven't been too disappointed yet. 

There are some things that I am getting used to though. The ISO sensitivity seems weak, but I do understand that it's an older body. I tend to use off camera flash and don't usually shoot higher than 500 ISO, though. All in all, the images this camera produces are stunning. 

As I started looking into lenses, I quickly realized that Nikon was a cheaper solution to get started in the brand than Sony. I quickly sold some more of my Sony gear, which I then leveraged to purchase a Nikon 50mm 1.4, a Nikon 85 1.8, and a Sigma 24-70 2.8, which has me just about covered for everything that I generally shoot. With all of this difference, I had a little extra to pick up a new MacBook to edit the larger files on - a win, win in my book. 

One of the biggest selling points behind the Nikon system was its ability to shoot tethered in Lightroom. I've tried to shoot tethered with the Sony, but it's always been buggy. With the Nikon, I haven't had a single issue, and I'd argue it's made my workload a little more efficient when I'm on certain jobs. 

When I sit back and think about the move from Sony, there are certainly some things that I miss. For instance, I miss being able to zoom in for critical focus. Moreover, I miss the option to see what the exposure will look like before I take the photo. These are small things though, as I generally don't have problems gauging the exposure for shots - that's what the internal meter is for. And, when all else fails, I bust out the old-fashioned light meter and really get an understanding for the lighting situation in the scene. 

So, here's to the coming months as a Nikon user. I'm optimistic.