So to start, I want to say that I do not think Nikon is better. Nor is Canon, or Fuji, or Sony. They are all tools with which we choose to use for our business. So with that said this is a personal story of why I chose to change brands after ten years of shooting.
It was a mild spring afternoon in Colorado; I was sitting in my college computer lab in a bidding war for a Canon camera.
$40 and a couple of weeks and I had my new camera. But when it showed up it was a film SLR. I had no idea what that meant; I was just bidding on what was a cool looking camera and what I thought might be a digital camera. I was wrong, but this was back in 2004 or 05, and digital cameras were not as prevalent. But this is what got me started on Canon. It wasn't hardcore research, or well-thought choices; it was an eBay win.
I didn't go wrong; Canon treated me well. In fact, the first four years of my professional career were with Canon cameras. I have shot the XS, t1i, t2i, t3i t4i, t5i, The 5D classic, the 5d2, the 6d, the 7d, the 5d3 and eosM (That is not to mention the film cameras). I have used a lot of the Canon lineup. I loved it, and there is nothing wrong with Canon
And there is always the potential that I will buy a Canon body at some point again in the future, but let's get to why I left. This happened around the time that the 35mm 1.4 II was being released and after the 24-70mm 2.8 II had been released. There were rumors about the Canon 5d IV, and it just seemed to me that Canon was not really in it for the photographer anymore. The sensor was not that much different, the glass was marginally better, and the 24-70 didn’t have any Image Stabilization, but the price tag was $1200+ than what other companies were doing for similar if not better equipment.
(Now remember, these are my opinions, you can disagree).
I had thought about switching to Nikon before. But in my earlier years, it was because I thought that I sucked because of the tools I had. I realized that my cameras were just that, tools, and I needed to work on who I was as a photographer and my vision.
Then the D750 came out, I had seen some photographers post some amazing shots utilizing the dynamic range of the sensor, and the tones that came from this camera just called to my soul.
So I decided to switch. Like I said before, I knew that these were just tools, but I knew that Nikon was attempting to give photographers something that they wanted. My lenses have been the Sigma lenses for years, so I knew that I could just swap them. So I posted all my gear for sale and hoped that it would all sell before my next wedding.
Well, they did. I sold my Canon 5d3, 6d, all my lenses, and flashes and was able to buy brand new Nikon D750’s with the same lens setups and flashes with money left over. That was rad.
Well, I the day after receiving them I had a wedding proposal to shoot, and the following weekend I had a wedding. So there was little testing, just jumping in. I struggled a bit with the dials and lens mounting, and I missed the wheel dial that Canon uses, but when I got my images into Lightroom, I was so stoked. The tones were what I had been chasing after, and I loved Nikon.
Its been two and a half years since I switched, and I have never really thought about going back. Canon was great for years, they do good things, but my style changed and Nikon fit my vision.
What I really love about Nikon using Sony sensors is the control I have in the Dynamic range of images. I can expose for the sky and capture my sunset that I want and then in post recover the shadows that I want. This way I do not lose the information in the highlights. Back with Canon I used to have to bracket shoot and then mask in the sky from the image and the people from another, it was very time consuming.
I know that Canon has gotten a little better, but for me the mix of dynamic range and tones was what has me hooked.
As I explore the world of the video, there is a chance that I may jump back in and buy some Canon bodies for video, but only time will tell.