GAS, personal choices and compromises
I haven't posted on this forum for some time but have followed it almost daily. This post is my attempt to provide a personal perspective on the tension I have experienced since returning to photography in 2010 between Gear Acquisition Syndrome (GAS), the reality of engineering compromises and my ill-defined photographic style and relatively poor abilities regardless of equipment in hand.
I have owned a variety of cameras and lenses - all Canon because I bought into the Canon system. In all honesty I do not think the differences between equivalent cameras at any point in time outweigh the benefits of the system (lens availability, familiarity with menus and controls etc) and certainly not the level of antagonsim evident in many posts.
My EOS550D, 7D and a number of high quality lenses (EF70-200 MkII, EFS15-85, 10-22 included) as well as companion cameras (S95 and G12) were stolen two years ago. The wierd thing is that rather than rush out and buy replacements, I restricted myself to compact cameras (G1X, SX280, SX50). There were good reasons for this: I travel a lot so needed something with me that was not a DSLR. So I use the SX280 when I want something on my hip that is always available and doesn't need a separate bag. I use the G1X if I am travelling and will have the opportunity for dedicated shooting. I use the SX50 where I need the reach of the 50x zoom.
I have accepted the trade offs for each of these "engineering compromises". I know that if the light is good and my subject not moving too quickly I can get reasonable captures - especially if I use the metering system properly. But I have recently bought the EOS70D with 18-135STM lens and I am really enjoying the DSLR experience again - principally responsiveness and yes the OVF. However, my personal compromise is that it will not travel with me on business trips and I will use the SX50 for wildlife. I don't take enough pictures of wildlife to warrant the expense of the long lenses for a DSLR. For family and holiday situations I love the DSLR.
Apologies for the longish post, but I just wanted to point out that for me at least there is no one solution to my needs and I have realised that different situations require different cameras. The engineering compromises are exactly that - compromises. I accept that in poor light my SX280 and SX50 will not perform that well. I know that the IQ for the G1X is more than adequate for me and that if space/portability is not an issue then the 70D will be my first choice. For me at least the camera capabilities outweigh my abilities.