Olympus is the best value in DSLRs today. Several reviews have mnieeontd that Olympus offers a better value by packing more features for the same or, in most cases, less than the competition. Olympus has been praised for being easy for beginners while offering the full control and quality that professionals demand. Olympus also makes the smallest and lightest DSLRs on the market today, with the E-420 being the smallest. Olympus offers picture quality comparable to any other manufacturer out there. It is true that the sensor, the four thirds system, is smaller than other DSLRs. It is also true that this technology was created with cooperation between Olympus and Kodak with support from Sigma, Sanyo, Panasonic, Leica, and Fuji. It’s not just one company, its an industry standard. Olympus also designed its digital Zuicko lenses to be digital from the ground, rather than adapt film lenses for digital use. The end result is a sharp, clear, crisp image with great color quality and clarity. Since Olympus cameras come with many shooting modes and live view, it’s easier to become familiar with the camera and learn the manual controls one by one until you are ready for full manual control. I have used many different camera brands over the past 30 years, including Nikon, Fuji, Argus, Olympus and even Sanyo among others. I choose Olympus because the cameras are lighter and offer more features than the competition in the same class. On the entry level side, the Olympus E-420 offers many advanced features other entry level cameras, such as the Nikon D40, don’t have. My E-510 came with a nice 14-42mm lens that is the one of, if not the, lightest lens offered with a DSLR kit, and among the fastest to auto focus. And with the new prime 25mm lens, the E-420 has been compared in size to some compact cameras. The size and weight can become an issue when carrying a camera around all day. Look around Yahoo! Answers and you will find several people who upgraded to DSLR cameras now looking for a quality compact to use as their take along. All cite the size and weight of the DSLR as the main factor. Since Olympus offers more for less money, you’ll find it easier t get all those extras that go along with a new camera. You can’t forget about the things you need such as memory cards, tripod, carry bag, extra battery, flash, etc. You don’t want to find yourself short, no matter what camera you decide to buy. When buying a DSLR camera, most come bundled with a lens in a kit. Olympus offers auto focus on all the kit lenses, with the exception being the new prime 25mm lens. Some companies offer only manual focus lenses. It’s not a major issue. After all manual focus lenses tend to be lighter since they have no motor in them. However, many people moving to their first DSLR are looking for those little things that help them out and prefer auto focus lenses, at least to start. This is another reason Olympus is often considered a better buy, giving you more for your money. Olympus also went with Image Stabilization (IS) in the camera body. This makes all lenses IS lenses, others such as Nikon and Canon offer IS only in additional and expensive lenses. Another feature you get along with the patented, and first, dust reduction system in DSLRs. In body IS has been proven to be as effective as the lens IS. The fact is that since Olympus uses a smaller sensor and in body IS works best with smaller sensors, it made sense to offer IS as a value added feature. It’s also true that any DSLR you choose will be a quality product that serves you well for years. The main differences tend to be the features offered at a given price point and personal preference. Nikon and Canon have the largest share, with Olympus being the fastest growing brand. Sigma and Leica are known for their quality and the price shows.