I pre-ordered my Canon EOS 5D Mark II in late 2008. I didn't know it then, but a few weeks later, I would lose my full-time job with O'Reilly Media.
Once I found out about the department-wide layoff, I wondered out loud on social media, "Should I go through with the purchase of the 5D Mark II?" After all, that $2,500 would come in real handy for other things, like paying the mortgage.
My friends were unanimous in their response: "Keep the camera. You're going to need it." And they were right.
For the next 8+ years, I depended on the Canon and my arsenal of lenses to deliver the goods to commercial clients. In the beginning, I thought 21 megapixels was overkill. Near the end, it wasn't quite enough.
That's right. The end.
I sold the Canon 5D Mark II on Amazon yesterday. I've also let go of the 24-105mm L zoom, and my 70-200mm f/2.8 IS L is listed online right now. It's the end of an era for me that began in 1995 when I started shooting weddings. So what happened?
Over the last few years, the 5D Mark II has started to feel like old technology, especially compared to my Olympus Micro Four Thirds gear that I use for travel and event photography. I really liked my Canon, and kept using it regardless. But I just can't anymore. It's too weird going from the OM-D E-M5 Mark II to the 5D.
I waited to see what Canon had to offer in terms of new models. After the recent wave of announcements, I decided that I just wasn't excited by their stuff. I knew I had to replace the 5D Mark II, but with what?
The answer came when Pentax announced the 24MP KP. It was love at first sight. It featured an upgrade in resolution, great low light performance, sensor-based image stabilization (which I came to appreciate through Olympus), and a set of super compact HD limited edition lenses that are a fraction of the size of my Canon glass.
In fact, I have been wanting the Pentax DA 20-40mm f/2.8-4 ED Limited since the day it was announced. Now, I finally have it. (Man, that was a long wait...)
What I like about this transition is that my DSLR gear is better aligned with my Micro Four Thirds kit. I enjoy shooting with an optical viewfinder at times, and will probably always have a DSLR to complement my mirrorless. But these days, I want efficient, compact gear. And that's what I get with Pentax and the limited edition lenses.
I will always be fond of Canon. I shot the Beijing Olympics with Canon. My first trip to Iceland was with this gear. I have billboards thanks to the 5D Mark II. But we just ran out of road.
It's been a good run, Canon. Thanks for the great images.
Maybe our paths will cross again someday.