Trade Ins

Both Olympus and Sony currently have trade-in events going on. With Olympus you get a US$300 bonus on your trade-in towards their current mirrorless cameras (other than the E-M10III just introduced), with Sony you get a US$300 bonus towards the A7 series, or up to US$500 bonus towards the A9.

Here are the two relevant B&H pages [advertiser links]

Get used to this, you're going to see more of it, and from more manufacturers in the future.

Why? Simple, Japan wants you to update faster.

Digital cameras, including mirrorless models, got quite competent very fast. I wrote years ago about Last Camera Syndrome, where users simply decide that what they've got is good enough and they stop looking at and buying new models.

Realistically, how many of us need more than 16mp? Or ISO 64,000? Focus stacking? 20 fps? Full-time EVF with no blackout? Answer: not many. Are those things nice to have? Sure. But are they enough to get you to pull out your credit card and yell Charge! Probably not.

Moreover, the camera makers have been all swimming upstream with their models, reaching new higher price points (not in inflation-adjusted dollars, but consumers don't think in inflation-adjusted dollars). So not only are those nifty new features not really necessary, it looks to most like they'll be a pain in the credit score to obtain them.

Thus the trade-in bonus. Not only do you get the trade-in value for your camera—which, by the way, is being driven down by this same insidious practice—but you get some bonus cash. By definition, you have to give up your old camera to get the new one (as opposed to keeping it as a backup), which basically cures your Last Camera Syndrome.

For now. As with all marketing/sales schemes, these things tend to run their course and some new scheme will be needed once the last updaters are squeezed using this technique.

So, if you've been jonesing for a new mirrorless camera from Olympus or Sony, there's a way to reduce the financial pain, at least by a bit. The Olympus program ends in late October, the Sony program at the end of September. Just remember this: there's likely to be lots of new marketing programs that hit in mid-to-late November.

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