1Dx vs D4: The Silly Season
Now that Canon has started shipping the new Canon 1Dx, we start to have the silly “mine’s better than yours.” Some “big name” (fill in the blanks) evaluated which camera is better by testing them at ISO insane. Those are high ISO that I have never used, ISO so high that almost nobody uses. It's like evaluating cars but only when the engine is revving at the red line…
|Nikon D4||Canon 1Dx|
First of all, I don’t know too many professional photographers switching from Canon to Nikon or switching from Nikon to Canon. It’s expensive, no, it's very expensive. If a photographer has a Canon 1D4 or a Nikon D3s, that photographer must also have a second backup camera, the lenses, the various flashes, connectors... When the Nikon D800 came out, I did a quick calculation for my small setup. Switching from Canon to Nikon would cost me between $15,000 to $20,000. Who’s going to pay for that? I didn’t hear Nikon knocking on my door offering me 2 D800 with the lenses… I didn’t hear any customer volunteering to pay more for the larger files. To change from a Nikon professional system with backups… to a Canon professional system or the other way around can easily cost in the $50,000 range. It’s so expensive that I’m convinced that some professional photographers, having done it, have gone out of business.
There are the monetary costs and then there is the rest.
- The ergonomics: For me, the best ergonomics are on Pentax dSLRs. To me they are just right, their cameras fit me. It’s like they were designed for my hands. It took me well over 6 month to feel comfortable with Canon after converting from Pentax. That meant a lot of fumbling and a lot of missed photos because I was struggling with the layout, the buttons, the directions, the missing functions… Please note that I’m a poorly coordinated klutz. I’m sure that many people could switch faster than me. To me, the ergonomics are the most important in a camera. If I’m fiddling with buttons, dials or menus, I’m missing the photos. It doesn’t matter how good is the ISO, the focus or the speed of the camera… if I’m not pressing on the shutter I'm no making the photographs. Canon runs clockwise, Nikon runs counter-clockwise.
- The autofocus: To me, after the ergonomics, the autofocus is the second most important feature of the camera. You see, I’m in my late fifties, I wear progressive lenses. I even have a pair of progressive glasses from Nikon just for the computer. Trying to focus by hand is a hit and miss affair. Without the autofocus, I would be out of business.
- The lenses: The Canon line-up is fairly different from the Nikon line-up, especially when it comes to the more “professional lenses.” One of the reason for switching from Pentax to Canon was the Canon 70-200 f/4IS lens. Canon completely dominates the professional long tele world. Nikon dominates the professional wide angles. Nikon has the famed 200-400 f/4, Canon will have one very, very soon... Nikon Micros vs Canon TSE lenses…
- The rest: Now we can talk about the rest. CPU, ISO…
In the past there’ve been plenty of bad cameras, but at this point in time, there is no bad camera anymore, it's just personal preferences. I'll defy you to make the difference between a photograph taken with a Canon T4i, a Nikon D7000, a Canon 1Dx or a Nikon D4. So now, it’s a matter of loyalty… Are you a “Nikon Man?” Is clockwise more natural than counter-clockwise?