Poll

Which System has the Best Ergonomics: Canon, Nikon, or Sony?

I prefer Canon
I prefer Nikon
I prefer Sony

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Author Topic: Ergonomics: Canon, Nikon, or Sony?  (Read 21272 times)

John Koerner

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Ergonomics: Canon, Nikon, or Sony?
« on: February 02, 2016, 10:00:59 pm »

Just curious of the general consensus of things regarding superior ergonomics.

I am trying to acclimate to the Nikon D810 I just purchased, and I realize that I have grown used to Canon ergonomics.
(I don't have to "think" when switching "this and that" on my Canon, it just happens automatically.)

While I am fully-aware of the fact I need to learn how to use my new Nikon, and that (maybe) all of its features will become second nature to me soon as well, my gut tells me Canon simply has superior ergonomics to the Nikon (which is a pretty big deal to me).

The switching of ISO levels (which requires 2 hands with the Nikon), the ability to display a histogram, even f/stop and SS switching just seems easier and more intuitive on the Canon than the Nikon.
(When quick thinking, and fast-action, are required, this can be a big deal ...)

I am curious to hear other people's thoughts in this regard: i.e., the opinions of those who have used multi-systems ... their beliefs as to which system has the superior ergonomics.

Every system seems to be upgrading at the moment ... and my thinking is, as "brand specs" get closer-and-closer in features, etc., that (ultimately) user-friendly, intuitive ergonomics are going to be the deciding points on purchase decisions ...

What are your thoughts?

Jack
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BernardLanguillier

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Re: Ergonomics: Canon, Nikon, or Sony?
« Reply #1 on: February 02, 2016, 11:12:31 pm »

As far as ISO setting goes, you have 2 easier options on the D810:

1. Set easy ISO in aperture mode -> one of the dial can be used to set the ISO with one hand
2. Use auto-ISO, probably the best implementation of any manufacturer since you can define the minimum shutter speed with a lot of flexibility (absolute value or related to focal length with possible bias).

For the rest, it's really a matter of getting used to it.

Cheers,
Bernard

Colorado David

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Re: Ergonomics: Canon, Nikon, or Sony?
« Reply #2 on: February 02, 2016, 11:43:55 pm »

A friend and colleague of mine, a very well respected commercial photographer here, switched to Canon from Nikon about a year before the D3 came out.  He needed the full frame and larger file of the Canon at the time. After making the switch, we were working together on a shoot. He had nothing good to say about the Canon ergonomics or operation.  He was pleased with the files, but hated the tactile experience. I think it may be as much what you're used to. If you've spent years with your hands wrapped around one or the other brand of camera, switching is going to be tedious. When the D3 was announced I had just spent two weeks on a shoot in the wilderness with no phone or internet. I learned about the Nikon D3 announcement from a TSA agent in a tiny little airport as he was inspecting my equipment bags.  The first thing I thought of was my friend and his switch to Canon. He is again a Nikon user, shooting the D800E and the D810. I'll have to find out what he plans to do about the D5.

In the film days everyone I knew had three identical camera bodies.  Remember that? Every time you upgraded to a new model, you bought three of them. Now it seems you have three different camera bodies.

razrblck

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Re: Ergonomics: Canon, Nikon, or Sony?
« Reply #3 on: February 03, 2016, 02:48:33 am »

I've been using Nikon for a long time. A friend of mine lent me a Canon 7D for a couple of days and I hated the big wheel on the back, but the files were indeed nice. The menu was also a big issue for me, I'm used to the new Nikon menu. It was already painful when they switched cameras to that menu style, as I started on the old one on a Coolpix bridge, but this was minor compared to switching everything.

As for the feel, Canon do feel more "cheap" to me, despite being really tough. But it's just a tactile feel, I had the same impression of handling a toy when I tried the D810 and really didn't like it.

I never recommend switching systems, it's always a pain in the ass as well as a huge financial hit for the lenses.

I don't want to live in a world in which either Nikon or Canon have no direct competition. I want them both to coexists as it is beneficial to us customers, so I always tell people to go with whatever they find more comfortable and intuitive for them because the final image quality is less about the gear and more about everything else.
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pluton

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Re: Ergonomics: Canon, Nikon, or Sony?
« Reply #4 on: February 03, 2016, 04:15:10 am »

The top of the line Nikons have really nice ergos.  I had D2 and D3 cameras.  Take one step down, such as my current D800/E cameras, and the feel turns junky in comparison.
Can't say if Canon is the same.  I've briefly handled 5D Mk2 cams, and they felt fine to me.
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Paulo Bizarro

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Re: Ergonomics: Canon, Nikon, or Sony?
« Reply #5 on: February 03, 2016, 07:13:34 am »

I prefer Canon, but that is just because I have used EOS for nearly 20 years. Now using Sony Alpha 7, no problem with it for the way I shoot (mostly aperture priority).

francois

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Re: Ergonomics: Canon, Nikon, or Sony?
« Reply #6 on: February 03, 2016, 08:04:10 am »

I also prefer Canon although I've been shooting with Nikon and other brands. I's just a matter of taste after all.
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Francois

pegelli

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Re: Ergonomics: Canon, Nikon, or Sony?
« Reply #7 on: February 03, 2016, 10:19:14 am »

Just curious of the general consensus of things regarding superior ergonomics.
I don't think it's possible to to get consensus on ergonomics. It's too personal. You can only develop statistics what's more preferred vs. others, but that's not a consensus of what is superior (or not)
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pieter, aka pegelli

Otto Phocus

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Re: Ergonomics: Canon, Nikon, or Sony?
« Reply #8 on: February 03, 2016, 11:18:13 am »

In my opinion, it comes down to

1.  What the person is used to

2.  The ability of the person to adapt to a different format

3.  The willingness of the person to adapt to a different format.

Some can jump between different formats easily, others can't and still others can but choose not to.
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John Koerner

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Re: Ergonomics: Canon, Nikon, or Sony?
« Reply #9 on: February 03, 2016, 11:28:59 am »

I agree that it comes down to "taste" ... not "ability."

Some people hate the "big wheel" of the Canon, but to me this is what makes it so useful.

The letters/numbers in the Nikon viewfinder are tiny and poorly-illuminated compared to the Canon.

However, the LiveView I find better than the Canon.

I don't like having to switch the D810 body to AF, and then have to switch my lens to AF, in order to be able to use AF. (The extra step is a waste of time.)

With the Canon, I would just flip the switch on the lens and not have to look away from my camera.

With the Nikon, I flip the same lens switch (same Sigma macro lens), but then I have to pull my face from the camera, look for the switch on the D810 body, and flip that too, to have AF.

A lame concept.

Even if I get used to where the AF switch is on the D810 body, I shouldn't have to flip 2 switches to use 1 feature.

The ability to use AF should be a lens-switch only, not a camera body switch.
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John Koerner

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Re: Ergonomics: Canon, Nikon, or Sony?
« Reply #10 on: February 03, 2016, 12:33:50 pm »

Out of 19 voters so far, 10 (52.6%) prefer Canon, 8 (42.1%) prefer Nikon, and only 1 (5.3%) prefers Sony.

Of these, I wonder how many have actually used both (all 3) systems?
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NancyP

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Re: Ergonomics: Canon, Nikon, or Sony?
« Reply #11 on: February 03, 2016, 02:07:53 pm »

I haven't seriously used a digital Nikon SLR (have used Nikon film SLRs) - one thing that always gets me is that Nikon lenses focus in a different direction than Canon lenses, and some third party lenses follow Nikon while others follow Canon. I have some Nikon-direction manual focus lenses I use on the Canon, and I need to just focus on anything when I start the day, just to get my brain to tell the hands to focus the Nikon way, not the usual Canon way.  :)
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Colorado David

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Re: Ergonomics: Canon, Nikon, or Sony?
« Reply #12 on: February 03, 2016, 02:25:56 pm »

Of these, I wonder how many have actually used both (all 3) systems?

I have not used the Sony system although I own three different Sony video cameras.  I am a Nikon shooter.  I have, however, used Canon enough to know I don't like it.  I have no issue with the equipment itself or the images, just my preference and comfort with the Nikon system.  I shoot quite a bit with a friend and colleague who is a Canon guy. Over the years I've shot a lot of images of him with his gear that wind up in magazines credited as Author's Photo.  We've had a decade-long good-natured discussion over Canon/Nikon.  A couple of years ago he needed to buy a waterproof camera capable of being submerged for shooting flyfishing images.  He told me he looked as hard as he could to find a suitable Canon and couldn't.  He said it really burned his butt, but he bought a Nikon 1 AW and loves it.  That story doesn't have anything to do with the DSLR system discussion, but it does indicate that some people can overcome their brand preference when they have to.

Telecaster

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Re: Ergonomics: Canon, Nikon, or Sony?
« Reply #13 on: February 03, 2016, 03:33:35 pm »

Having used all three systems extensively I chose Nikon. Keep in mind, though, that I no longer use D-SLRs but do own & use a Sony A7r2.  :)

-Dave-
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razrblck

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Re: Ergonomics: Canon, Nikon, or Sony?
« Reply #14 on: February 03, 2016, 03:36:10 pm »

I haven't seriously used a digital Nikon SLR (have used Nikon film SLRs) - one thing that always gets me is that Nikon lenses focus in a different direction than Canon lenses, and some third party lenses follow Nikon while others follow Canon. I have some Nikon-direction manual focus lenses I use on the Canon, and I need to just focus on anything when I start the day, just to get my brain to tell the hands to focus the Nikon way, not the usual Canon way.  :)

I hear ya, this is something that still bothers me. I have so many film cameras I often use, and everyone focuses a different way or has aperture rings in front rather than the back, and they also turn a different way. It's just such a mess of systems and I have to switch my brain every time.
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dwswager

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Re: Ergonomics: Canon, Nikon, or Sony?
« Reply #15 on: February 03, 2016, 03:49:10 pm »

Just curious of the general consensus of things regarding superior ergonomics.

I am trying to acclimate to the Nikon D810 I just purchased, and I realize that I have grown used to Canon ergonomics.
(I don't have to "think" when switching "this and that" on my Canon, it just happens automatically.)

While I am fully-aware of the fact I need to learn how to use my new Nikon, and that (maybe) all of its features will become second nature to me soon as well, my gut tells me Canon simply has superior ergonomics to the Nikon (which is a pretty big deal to me).

The switching of ISO levels (which requires 2 hands with the Nikon), the ability to display a histogram, even f/stop and SS switching just seems easier and more intuitive on the Canon than the Nikon.
(When quick thinking, and fast-action, are required, this can be a big deal ...)

I am curious to hear other people's thoughts in this regard: i.e., the opinions of those who have used multi-systems ... their beliefs as to which system has the superior ergonomics.

Every system seems to be upgrading at the moment ... and my thinking is, as "brand specs" get closer-and-closer in features, etc., that (ultimately) user-friendly, intuitive ergonomics are going to be the deciding points on purchase decisions ...

What are your thoughts?

Jack

Switching can be tough.  As a Nikon shooter, when Canon folks ask me how to manipulate their cameras it's almost like they are handing me kryptonite! 

As to ISO, yeah it is a button and dial usually so 2 hands, but your eyen never needs to leave the viewfinder.   I use Auto ISO quite a bit in manual mode.  This allows me the flexibility to manipulate both shutter and aperture as situations dictate without having a minimum shutter speed mess me up.  You have to ensure that in high light levels there is enough shutter speed available though.

As to MF to AF,  you can keep the camera on AF and flip the lens switch to manual and then flip it back to AF.  No need to manipulate the switch on the body.  And you can manually focus most Nikon lenses even when lens it set to AF.  If you back button focus and set shutter button to release only, that also preclude accidently activating AF when you have MF the lens in AF mode and it also save battery because VR only activates when the shutter button is pressed instead of when focusing.
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Colorado David

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Re: Ergonomics: Canon, Nikon, or Sony?
« Reply #16 on: February 03, 2016, 09:11:34 pm »

Jack, I thought you were going to switch to the D500. I concede that there are good reasons to buy the D810. I have one myself and really like it a lot. Are you still planning to buy the D500?  I'm just curious about your reasoning. Please give us the Cliff Notes version. Thanks.

Alan Smallbone

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Re: Ergonomics: Canon, Nikon, or Sony?
« Reply #17 on: February 03, 2016, 09:30:33 pm »

I did not vote, I have used the Canon system for years, from FD to EOS to digital EOS and now use the Fuji a lot and I really like the Fujifilm interface.....

Alan
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John Koerner

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Re: Ergonomics: Canon, Nikon, or Sony?
« Reply #18 on: February 03, 2016, 09:38:40 pm »

Jack, I thought you were going to switch to the D500. I concede that there are good reasons to buy the D810. I have one myself and really like it a lot. Are you still planning to buy the D500?  I'm just curious about your reasoning. Please give us the Cliff Notes version. Thanks.

I have the D810 and the D500 on pre-order.

I am considering re-thinking that position and combining those resources to just go with the 1 Dx Mk II.

The cliff notes version as to "why" would be I don't like the ergonomics of the D810, and the reading I have done indicates the D5 and D500 have so-so 4K, while the 1 Dx Mk II appears to have world class 4K.

(BTW: B&H Photo is a great outfit. You can use the products and, if you don't like them, send them back for full-credit and/or refund.)

Jack
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BernardLanguillier

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Re: Ergonomics: Canon, Nikon, or Sony?
« Reply #19 on: February 03, 2016, 09:56:43 pm »

The 1DXmkII seems to be a great camera but is a totally different beast compared to the D810/D500. I am less and less clear about your needs. ;)

As far as video goes, none of those seem to come close to what Sony/Pana offer for significantly less cash.

Cheers,
Bernard
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