How I (Finally) Chose the Fuji X-E1 | Zachery Jensen
If you have followed me online, then, you probably witnessed my indecisive behavior regarding photographic equipment. I have switched, swapped, paired, replaced and revisited my imaging toolkit at least twelve times. That is an under-estimate. I have dropped systems only to migrate right back to the same one months later—repeatedly. It got a little crazy. It also meant I was exposed to many approaches to the modern camera experience. I was able to form opinions on many aspects of it with a great deal of freedom. I did try renting and I found that, without the implied sense of ownership from actually purchasing a product, I did not experience the camera in the same way. There was no personal bond to the tool and without that investment, I frequently overlooked important aspects of the devices. This cycle only began one full year into my devotion to the practice of photography. For the first year, I used just one camera. For the following two years I played musical camera… chairs. That game is finally over.
Not coincidentally, I had experienced a similar situation several years prior to getting into photography. I was really interested in smart phones before most anyone in the mass market knew they existed. I would frequently buy them via gray market sources, use them, experience them, learn how terrible they were in various ways, then resell them to fund the next one. I mentally cataloged all of the various features and behaviors that I appreciated and those that I hated. There were many aspects that lived in the middle ground where I might have an opinion, but, not one strong enough to be considered a showstopper or a must have thing. This process repeated until Apple announced the iPhone. I thought it was ridiculous. It wasn’t even really a smartphone. It did not allow you to install apps, after all. However, most smart phones at the time were so poorly supported by third parties that they may as well not have had apps as well. I realized the most important aspects of my smart phone experience were being provided by Apple itself and by that virtue I knew they would be good user experiences far exceeding the garbage presented by companies like Nokia and Samsung at the time. So I switched. I have not had the slightest inclination to switch phone platforms since then.
So we’ve established that I do this… indecisive shuffling and then eventually find a settling point after I’ve had enough experience. I can’t guarantee I will never switch camera systems again, but, it will only happen if something new and unpredictable arrives, and it will not be without great deliberation as I am, frankly, sick and tired of the swap game. I lose time, money, and sleep each time I make one of these switches. I can’t afford to keep all of the cameras. I have to sell all of the gear to fund the next kit. The one and only product launch that will have me considering a switch again will be a full frame rangefinder style mirrorless camera with pro controls and conception—and not Leica. Since that isn’t likely to occur any time soon, I am not terribly worried about it. Furthermore, I won’t switch to an immature system. If there is a compelling offering, I will still be waiting for the necessary lenses to be produced……
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