Quote Originally Posted by franny View Post
I want to dip into one of these systems but I'm having trouble weighing the pros and cons for each system. My interest is in general use and portraits (handheld and tripod) without flash.
Nikon and Olympus make great photographic equipment. I use Nikon film and digital cameras. I also use Olympus digital cameras.

One big con for me was the way the Olympus (and Nikormats) handled due to the location of their shutter controls. I prefer my shutter speed control on top of the camera where I can adjust it with my right hand as opposed to around the lens mount where I have to adjust it with my left hand.

Back in the days when some news organizations made the switch from Nikon to Olympus, many pro photographers and camera repair technicians said that the Olympus was not tough enough for heavy use like the Nikon.

The Nikon system is more extensive than the Olympus system.

Quote Originally Posted by franny View Post
My interest is in general use and portraits (handheld and tripod) without flash.
Either system will do an excellent job.

Quote Originally Posted by franny View Post
I'm choosing these two mounts because they are moderatly available, affordable, and compatibile with digital bodies.
I love the Nikon mount because it allows me to use all my old Nikon lenses on the new Nikon digital cameras. I understand that only Nikon, Pentax, and Leica digital bodies can accept their old film lenses without needing adapters.

Quote Originally Posted by franny View Post
I never really thought too much about Minolta and Pentax, but I see no reason to choose those over Olympus and Nikon.
There are times when I need a smaller, lighter, and less expensive 35mm SLR body. I have never had the opportunity to use the Olympus OM1 but I have used the following:
Nikon EM
Nikon N70/F70
Pentax ME (smaller and lighter than the Olympus OM1)

Quote Originally Posted by franny View Post
Olympus is cheaper, smaller, and lighter.
When the Olympus OM1 35mm camera was first introduced, I fell in love with its innovative small size, its lightweight, and its attractive look. Had I not been fully invested in the Nikon system, I would have bought an OM1.

Quote Originally Posted by franny View Post
I'm interested in the following focal lengths: 28, 35, 50, 85, 100/105
I have five of these lenses. However, I rarely carry all five at the same time because some are too close together in focal length. I carry the 28, 50, and 105 or the 35 and 85.

Quote Originally Posted by franny View Post
If I go Nikkor, then I was thinking of the following setup (All AI-S): 28mm f2.0, 50mm f1.4, 105mm f1.8/ f2.5
For my shooting style I prefer:
28mm f/2.8 (at this focal length, I do not need the extra light gathering of an f/2)
50mm f/1.4
105mm f/2.5 (this legendary portrait lens deserves its reputation)

Quote Originally Posted by franny View Post
In the future, i would add 35mm f1.4 and 85mm f1.4 or 35mm f2 and 85mm f2 for economy and filter thread consistency..
For these focal lengths, I use these Nikon lenses:
35mm f/1.4 (uses 52mm filter)
85mm f/1.8 (also uses 52mm filter)

Quote Originally Posted by franny View Post
Who makes the better lenses?
Nikkor and Zuiko lenses are very similar in optical quality. Both are superb

Older Nikon lenses are more plentiful and less costly than their Zuiko counterpart.

Quote Originally Posted by franny View Post
Which 35mm should I get? I hear that the f1.4 is a dog, if that is the case then I may as well go with the f2.0 lens.
I totally disagree with what you hear about the Nikon 35mm lenses. The 35mm f/2 lens was the first lens I purchased for my Nikon camera. It was great lens and it was my favorite lens for general shooting. In fact, I used it so much that I had to replace it twice once with another f/2 and more recently with an f/1.4. I was very surprised to discover that my new Nikon 35mm f/1.4 had even better image quality than my f/2. Now, the Nikon 35mm f/1.4 is my favorite lens.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/11336821@N00/5349100247/
http://www.flickr.com/photos/11336821@N00/7011397917/