Are Long-time Olympus users like Leica Zealots?

Started Jan 3, 2013 | Discussions thread
papillon_65 Forum Pro • Posts: 27,030
Re: Are Long-time Olympus users like Leica Zealots?

Thomas Kachadurian wrote:

Years ago I used Leica cameras for making photos and while I did I learned that about half of the people buying Leicas were more like followers of a religion than photographers. I don't personally understand it, but in many ways I can see where the craftsmanship of Leica cameras, particularly the older ones, does make them objects beyond their function.

But I'm starting to get the impression that there might be just the same level of zealotry for Olympus cameras with a certain segment. I've owned various Olympus cameras over the years (RC, Stylus Epic, E-10, and now EM5) but they've never struck me as things to love for their form or that inspire allegiance. But there are few few threads here now, and I've noticed them in the past where the posters are clearly not asking about M43 cameras or lenses, but about Olympus only.

Don't underestimate brand allegiance, manufacturers know this and use it to their advantage. Olympus users are no different to users of other niche brands. I have a Sigma and a couple of Fuji's and the owners of these brands are much the same. They will defend their brand as they appreciate the differences in these particular cameras. In the case of Sigma it's a sensor that is the best at low ISO's and Fuji offer different sensors again, particularly strong for dynamic range and jpegs. All these systems have their own strengths as well as some inherent weaknesses. They are not like the middle of the road Canon and Nikon offerings. Unfortunately it leads to pointless arguments over which is best of all against other brands. This usually results in a siege mentality as the pointless pi$$ing contests progress. Olympus users are no different to users of Pentax, Sigma, Fuji and Samsung etc, all will fight their corner. Don't forget 4/3's users have been through this and many have now moved on to m4/3's. As to what's different about Olympus, for me it's the innovation and build quality of Olympus cameras. I've owned many and never had a single one fail on me, from DSLR's to m4/3's. That's a big thing for me, they are the most reliable brand I've used for anything, kind of like the Toyota of the camera world in my experience. Others may have had problems but it's never happened to me personally.

Things like "which Zuiko lens to buy" As if there are no Panasonic lenses that are native to Olympus M43. Where which option to get is limited not by what is needed, but by what specifically Olympus offers. Or other comments to questions about the EM5 menu where the writer responds that Olympus menus have always worked this way as if the only people who might buy Olympus cameras were part of a club.

These will often be 4/3's users who have loyalty to Zuiko lenses, which are amongst the best you can get. They have a reputation for consistency and are undoubtedly of very high quality. Should you be surprised that people like that and look for something similar in m4/3's? In my experience Panasonic lenses are very good also but I understand the "Zuiko" love, just like you see with L lenses in the Canon world, it's human nature.

Is this just that some people don't realize the universal compatibility of M43 stuff? Is it a new thing fostered by the lovely retro look of the early Pens and now EM-5? Or, has there been this subculture of Olympuphiles for a long time and I've just swerved into their world by virtue of using M43?

Call me crazy. I happen to like photos of cats.

Some people love Alpha Romeo cars, despite their obvious flaws they offer something different. Not everyone wants to be part of the herd. It's easy to go with Canon and Nikon and join in the universal backslapping because Canon and Nikon advertising tells you they're the best and Uncle Tom swears by his. If you don't you're somehow bucking the trend and some people don't like that and will go on the offensive. So what if some people over-enthuse about their chosen camera? again it's human nature. There's no need for others to get all agitated over a technical point that may be incorrect, it's just an excuse for an argument.
Saying Olympus users are somehow different, and zealots, is just another excuse for an argument. Go on the Sigma forum and tell them their Foveon sensors are not as good as bayer sensors and you'll get exactly the same reaction. Go on the Sony NEX forum and wax lyrical about the OMD and they'll immediately produce cameras they believe are better.

Nope, not an Olympus problem, it's human nature. Buy what you want and be happy with it, if you can't get decent images from any modern camera it's not the camera that's the problem.

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