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Sigma unveils radical DP2 Quattro with re-thought ~19.6MP Foveon sensor

By dpreview staff on Feb 10, 2014 at 07:44 GMT

Sigma has revealed the next generation of its DP series of APS-C sensor, fixed focal length cameras, with the dp2 Quattro. The latest, 45mm-equivalent, model features dramatic styling and a fundamental re-think of the company's Foveon multi-layer sensor design. The Quattro sensor still uses three layers to detect color information but now only captures its full, 19.6 million pixel resolution in the top layer, with lower two layers capturing 4.9MP of information each. The sensor will also appear in 28mm and 75mm equivalent dp1 Quattro and dp3 Quattro models.

The company says the 4:1:1 ratio maintains most of the color resolution advantages of the existing Foveon design while reducing the amount of data that needs to be handled - speeding up processing and improving the noise characteristics. The idea is that the top, 19.6MP layer will capture the majority of the luminance information, that is interpreted as resolution, with the deeper layers providing the color information.

The Foveon X3 'Quattro' sensor samples 19.6MP of data at its top layer, but only 4.9MP at the two lower levels, meaning it captures higher luminance resolution than color resolution (something that's also true of conventional 'Bayer' sensors).

In principle we'd expect this to lose a little of the color resolution that Foveon chips have been known for, but until we've had a chance to play with one, we won't know how much difference it'll make. The company promises 'the same exacting standard of image quality' as its existing models. In addition to offering JPEGs at its 19.6MP luminance resolution, a 'Super-High' 39MP JPEG mode will also be offered (14-bit Raw files will include full 16.9+4.9+4.9MP data).

The dp1, dp2 and dp3 Quattro models will continue to feature 19mm, 30mm and 50mm F2.8 lenses, offering 28mm, 45mm and 75mm equivalent fields of view, respectively. The lens specifications, in terms of numbers of elements and groups, and minimum focusing distances, remain unchanged from the existing 'Merrill' models. All three models will have 920k dot rear LCDs and 9-point contrast-detection autofocus systems.

At 395g (13.9oz), without battery or memory card, the dp2 Quattro will be 40g heavier than its predecessor. However, it is based around a new, BP-51 battery, so the difference in shooting weights may be greater.

Price and availability have not yet been announced.

Press Release:


Reinvention of camera, reinvention of dp

SIGMA dp Quattro

The Sigma Corporation is pleased to announce the new generation of high image quality compact cameras “SIGMA dp” that incorporates a newly developed Foveon X3 direct image sensor (generation name: “Quattro”).

Unique and without peer among image sensors, the Foveon direct image sensor is similar to traditional color film in that its multiple layers capture all of the information that visible light transmits. Along with Sigma’s proprietary image processing technology, this sensor produces incredible resolution, precise gradation, gorgeous color, breathtaking realism with a 3D feel. In other words, full-bodied image quality.

For the new dp series, we rethought and redesigned every aspect of the camera, including the sensor, engine, lens, and body. While retaining its famous textural expression, which seems to give form to the air itself, the updated Foveon direct image sensor produces images that are more colorful, rich, deep, and faithful than ever before.

To a radical degree, the new-generation dp series embodies Sigma’s philosophy of creating cameras that produce works of art. Featuring the highest level of fundamental performance, this series unites artistic expression and daily experience as no other cameras can.

Special Features

With every element optimized for image quality, this camera is ready to produce works of art

Thanks to its optimized design featuring a fixed focal length lens and integrated body, the dp series offers both sensor and lens performance at the highest level. The result is full-bodied image quality.

In addition to superior holding performance, the camera body offers a balanced shape, layout, and weight distribution. With all of its elements designed for image quality, the dp offers highly intuitive operation. Its complete and robust specification allows the photographer to concentrate fully on photography itself and leverage the camera’s potential to produce outstanding images.

In everyday life, the dp series lets photographers find unexpected opportunities for experiencing emotion and enjoy photography and personal expression in exciting new ways. It is an outwardly simple yet extremely powerful embodiment of Sigma’s philosophy of photography.

Wide-angle, standard, and medium telephoto options

All of the fundamental photographic approaches in one lineup of three cameras

The dp series comprises three fixed focal length cameras, each of which features a different basic focal length for a different fundamental photographic approach: the wide-angle dp1 Quattro at 19mm, the standard dp2 Quattro at 30mm, and the medium telephoto dp3 Quattro at 50mm (respectively equivalent to 28mm, 45mm, and 75mm on a 35mm lens). Moreover, the three models share an exciting new camera body that brings out the best performance from the lens and image sensor.

It’s a simple but powerful lineup that delivers medium format-level image quality anywhere, anytime. Take all three with you and select as needed for the perfect shot. Only the dp series puts so much luxurious photographic potential in your hands.

The world’s only image capture system to use vertical color separation technology

Starting with our very first digital camera, we have featured the Foveon direct image sensor, which offers radically better image quality than any other sensor available. Leveraging the light absorption characteristics of silicon, the sensor comprises three layers of photodiodes, each at a different depth within the silicon and each corresponding to a different RGB color. Since it is the only sensor to use this superior vertical color separation technology, it is also the world’s only direct image sensor.

Almost all other image sensors are mosaic sensors, which use an array of RGB color filters in a single horizontal plane to capture color information. Each pixel is assigned only one of the three colors and cannot capture all three colors at once. In contrast, the Foveon direct image sensor captures color vertically, recording hue, value, and chroma accurately and completely for each pixel.

In the Foveon direct image sensor, there are no color filters, which cause a loss of information transmitted by light. Moreover, there is no low-pass filter needed to correct the interference caused by a color filter array. Finally, unlike the data from other sensors, which requires artificial interpolation to “fill in” missing colors, the data from the Foveon direct image sensor is complete for every single pixel and requires no interpolation. The unique technological principle of this sensor produces consistently outstanding image quality.

Newly developed Foveon X3 Quattro direct image sensor
Now featuring 39 megapixel-equivalent ultrahigh resolution

Capturing the information transmitted by light vertically instead of horizontally, the full-color image capture system of the Foveon direct image sensor is the only one of its kind in the world. This system makes possible the sensor’s full-bodied image quality, which is characterized by rich tone and gradation and texture that one can almost touch.

The newly developed Foveon X3 Quattro is the latest generation of this unique sensor. While retaining the distinctive characteristics of its predecessors, it offers an even higher level of image quality. In addition to 30% higher resolution, the volume of image data has become lighter, and it enables much faster image processing and lower current consumption.

At the same time, Able to maintain the same exacting standard of image quality while increasing megapixels and enhancing noise characteristics, this 1:1:4 solution was the inspiration for the name of the current generation of Foveon sensor: “Quattro.”

Newly developed TRUE III image processing engine
Optimized for processing Foveon X3 Quattro direct image sensor data

The new dp series cameras feature the newly developed TRUE (Three-layer Responsive Ultimate Engine) III. This image processing engine has evolved in pace with our Foveon direct image sensor and incorporates all of the image processing expertise we have developed over the years. Thanks to new refinements, it is the ideal engine for processing the rich and complex image data produced by the new-generation Foveon X3 Quattro direct image sensor. Our proprietary algorithm makes possible ultrafast processing of an immense volume of image data without any deterioration of the final images. The result is high-definition, 3D-like photographs with outstandingly rich color detail.

8
I own it
127
I want it
16
I had it
Discuss in the forums

Comments

Total comments: 774
12345
303MattB
By 303MattB (2 months ago)

I can not wait for this camera! I hope they have improved the image quality, although my Merrill is outstanding. High ISOs and faster buffering would be great to have.

It looks really cool as well. I love industrial designs. I liked my Merrill looks well enough, but this one looks great.

0 upvotes
evan47
By evan47 (2 months ago)

this will become a collectors curiosity item not a tool for photographers.
what were they thinking of? were they even thinking at all?

0 upvotes
Cal22
By Cal22 (2 months ago)

Isn't it a pity? Sigma has re-engineered the DP Merrill cameras, making them less prone to noise in low light conditions and speeding up processing. But making the Quattro cameras look like extraordinary photographic tools on the one hand, and on the other hand still not offering an EVF to the serious photographer is anything but reasonable. It's a contradictory strategy, which might bring the new cameras just like the DP Merrill versions in a very small niche within the toy department, eventually. Furthermore, since there's no EVF attainable Sigma misses out on the chance of offering a real stand-alone camera, a 12mm super wide angle camera would be.

0 upvotes
303MattB
By 303MattB (2 months ago)

Well, I had a couple of Fuji MF range finders (well still do), and range finders have a viewfinder but they are not really that useful. Just kind of a general idea of how the image would be framed LOL. By definiton the view finder does not go through the same lens as the image path, so it is just an approximation that is thrown off by subject distance. So, I think you are being overly dramatic on how much of an issue this would be...

You should give it a try, it is kind of a good exersize to let go of the total control mindset. Which I am very guilty of, and found out that I can get great images without the total control.

1 upvote
Minolta4Life
By Minolta4Life (2 months ago)

Oh, hell no!!! This thing goes far beyond the realm of good taste. Hand grip (or something that resembles one) with strap eyelet in the way, and no protrusion for finger grip looks non-functional. Squared off corners, long and unorthodox... Which pocket does this fit into? I love my SD15 Dinocamera, but come on Sigma...this is the fat chick with the nice personality.

0 upvotes
Lensjoy
By Lensjoy (2 months ago)

The human eye is most sensitive to green. When calculating luminance (Y) from the respective RGB values for gamma 2.2, the formula is:
Y = 0.2126*R^2.2 + 0.7152*G^2.2 + 0.0724*B^2.2
Blue is only 7 percent of perceived luminance! So if I were to design a sensor doing what Sigma is purporting to do, I would put the high resolution four pixels in the center green layer, not the top blue layer.

Perhaps Sigma is doing something more complex than the schematic in the article above implies, but from the above description I expect this sensor design to have faults that we'll see remedied in a future version. I wouldn't buy the camera yet.

0 upvotes
lightsculpture
By lightsculpture (2 months ago)

It is indeed slightly more complex. In reality, things do not work exactly as shown in the Foveon RGB layered diagrams. It is important to know that there is no color filter, so the top layer gets all the colors, not only blue. It is only when the light travels further down the sensor that blue, followed by green starts to decrease in intensity. The image processor then applies some complex algorithm to extract (or subtract) the RGB values for each layer.

The top layer on its own can thus also function as a very good B&W sensor that records light intensity for the combined RGB values. With Quattro, since the top layer has 4x the resolution, it records a much higher resolution B&W image. When high resolution image is overlaid onto the color information calculated using the TRUE algorithms, there should be much better details. At least theoretically...

Comment edited 6 times, last edit 12 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
Lensjoy
By Lensjoy (2 months ago)

Thanks, this explanation really helps. My next question would be, what is the exposure latitude like for that top layer since it receives all wavelengths together rather than just red, green, or blue? It will be interesting to see how the sensor stacks up in that department. Since there's no blue color filter, I also wonder how it deals with yellow since a bright yellow will register high intensity on the top layer as well as the red and green layers, making it difficult to distinguish from white light. I've seen some Foveon tests on color separation, but never seen a white/yellow pattern. Maybe there's a reason for that, because it shows the problem. Admittedly, white/yellow distinction is a fairly rare situation photographically.

0 upvotes
khunpapa
By khunpapa (2 months ago)

We have to go back to Physic 101 classroom <grin>

Photon can be both wave and particle _at the same time_.

The three layers sensor is doped with different elements. The final result is the uppermost P-N junction requires high energy photon to kick the electron (or hole) out of the orbit, generates electrical current.

After photons travel pass through, the high energy photon will be absorbed completely by this high-exitation P-N.

This 'absorption' is occured at the middle GREEN and lower RED layers, too.

Because of the wave/particle property, you may think that the "YELLOW" photon is really composed of RED and GREEN photon pairs.

Green will be absorbed in green. Red will be absorbed in red, and the same vertical axis.

After that - you just calculate what is the true color of that pixel, given signal strength from GREEN and RED layer.

0 upvotes
ebbo
By ebbo (2 months ago)

Really looking forward to seeing test results from this camera, well done Sigma for being brave enough to make it!

0 upvotes
WillDom
By WillDom (2 months ago)

I love my dp1s and dp2 cameras. Haven't been too intrigued with the current merrills but this device sounds like something more than mainly increased resolution. Promises faster response and some more options for shooting. I don't find the design ugly..but then I like to use cameras as tools, not fashion accessories.

0 upvotes
Rob13
By Rob13 (2 months ago)

Didn't think Sigma could make an uglier camera than the DP2 which I own. Its just a slippery box.

I was incorrect.

1 upvote
sanchil
By sanchil (2 months ago)

Look's like a hammer .... Thor's hammer ... maybe I'll be able to take superb pictures with it ... and then chop a piece of wood with it's other hammer end ... and fashion out a wooden grip for it quickly ... before the hassie gets to it ... :D

0 upvotes
pedrolito
By pedrolito (2 months ago)

why ugly? to me this form is formidable. finally something for the future which is not like old socks. and I am also sure that this dps will make fabulous photos.

moaners and whiners will pass away soon. ;)

3 upvotes
howielenny
By howielenny (2 months ago)

Sigma should stick to making lenses, they really know how to produce bad, ugly cameras.

1 upvote
Wally Brooks
By Wally Brooks (2 months ago)

I shoot large format 4x5 B&W film at ISO 300. At day break shooting typical exposure is 1/2 second @ f64 or f45. This is based on zone system calibration of film, developer, exposure meter. Using low ISO in digital to replicate the IQ of large format means that Foveon works for this scenario. The question is for me is the DP Merrell system offer better IQ than the Quattro. The body does look ugly too. Ugly body best IQ?

1 upvote
yabokkie
By yabokkie (2 months ago)

the area ratio between 4x5 and Sigma dp is 35 times,
so ISO300 on 4x5 translates to 300 / 35 = 8.5
for the same amount of light to the frame.

it was fun to use 35mm minicopy film (ISO6 to 32) to achieve higher image quality than medium format with normal films but it seems makers are not interested even for image quality challenged small formats (Pentax Q, Nikon 1, and 4/3").

Comment edited 6 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
D-Man67
By D-Man67 (2 months ago)

Movie mode(s)?

1 upvote
tornwald
By tornwald (2 months ago)

no more. thankfully.

0 upvotes
Laurence Matson
By Laurence Matson (2 months ago)

Are you so sure?

1 upvote
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (2 months ago)

Wow, this is great. You mean to tell me I only have to buy THREE of these babies -- and presto, I can actually be capturing images in 28, 45, and 75mm focal lengths? Wow, that is so nifty!

Also, who designed this thing? Professor Baron von Frankenstein of the German Democratic Republic?

1 upvote
Smeggypants
By Smeggypants (2 months ago)

Look on the bright side ..... at least it wasn't designed by Marc Newson!!

1 upvote
jon404
By jon404 (2 months ago)

Hey! I've got a Pentax K-01... and it's wonderful... very easy to use. I give Newson a big plus for it... but not for the Leica...

1 upvote
Recept
By Recept (2 months ago)

If the price is right (max 1200$) I'm buying this ''potato'' for some serious landscape p.

3 upvotes
HBowman
By HBowman (2 months ago)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kFdDblbHmRQ

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y2JJrn66A80

6 upvotes
jaygeephoto
By jaygeephoto (2 months ago)

Foveon? Are you still here dear? Thought you went home years ago.

1 upvote
designdef
By designdef (2 months ago)

Sigma should be congratulated for a 'radical' departure from the otherwise dull norm that camera design has now become. At the very least, it's not retro! Looks good, I hope it works, from every angle.

12 upvotes
ogl
By ogl (2 months ago)

We know that the lenses are sharp.
The design is really attractive and shocking. New FOVEON sensor.
I see SIGMA is only one interesting company now - innovative design and NEW sensor. Not boring retro-look or classical stuff from another brands.

Comment edited 33 seconds after posting
17 upvotes
Gesture
By Gesture (2 months ago)

If nothing else, I expect it will take a while for 3rd party RAW converters to master this sensor output. What Sigma can do with the RAW file with its Sigma Photo Pro will be an important part of the image equation.

I wish Dick Merrill were still alive to give his take on this.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 50 seconds after posting
3 upvotes
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (2 months ago)

3rd party raw converters haven't supported the recent "46mp" Sigma raw files. ACR will open files from some of the "14mp" cameras.

Right, how the Sigma raw extraction software works is a big part of the equation.

0 upvotes
ArcaSwiss
By ArcaSwiss (2 months ago)

Iridient Developer supports DP Merrill files. Likely Quattro as well soon.

4 upvotes
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (2 months ago)

ArcaSwiss--

Interesting to learn, but that's Mac only right?

My HP laptop's DreamColor monitor has significantly better color than the MacBook "retina" display, so that's a big reason to use Windows.

0 upvotes
Laurence Matson
By Laurence Matson (2 months ago)

This imager is his reply. His name is on the patent and it was very much his concept from the word go. As Dick Lyon said, this imager is his real legacy.

1 upvote
Baxter Bad
By Baxter Bad (2 months ago)

All this confusion about the ergonomics. Maybe Sigma polled its customers and learned that 95% of DPs are being used for landscapes and studio portraits, so they decided to make the next versions highly specialized for tripod work.

We get a wide body that lets you change the battery without taking the camera off the tripod. A "reversed" grip with all the controls on the back (including focus) and offset for easy access - we never have to reach for the focus ring. Optical finder only - perfect for landscapes, removable for the studio.

Well, that's my guess about the design rationale. Or maybe all the employees were playing too much Flappy Bird.

Comment edited 9 minutes after posting
3 upvotes
Raist3d
By Raist3d (2 months ago)

I think you bring up a good point.

0 upvotes
SeeRoy
By SeeRoy (2 months ago)

That "optical finder" sure is well concealed.

1 upvote
HBowman
By HBowman (2 months ago)

Actually, I you used at least one DP Merrill, it is possible to change battery without un-mounting the tripod plate.

4 upvotes
Baxter Bad
By Baxter Bad (2 months ago)

@SeeRoy - It's optional (clips onto the hot shoe). I see you're really interested in this product.

@HBowman - I owned a DP2 Merrill, a DP1s and a DP2. Not all tripod heads are the same or have controls that won't hinder battery access. The width of the Quattros should clear every tripod known to humanity. Or... maybe Sigma plans to introduce an accessory that uses the tripod mount and requires the extra clearance?

Comment edited 3 times, last edit 2 minutes after posting
3 upvotes
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (2 months ago)

Baxter Bad:

But there are all sorts of optical VFs that can be mounted in hot shoes. So SeeRoy has a point.

The optical VF is not part of the camera.

0 upvotes
Baxter Bad
By Baxter Bad (2 months ago)

@HowaboutRAW - Reading is fundamental. Pass the word to SeeRoy.

0 upvotes
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (2 months ago)

Baxter Bad:

It remains untrue to assert that this camera has an OVF. (Of course you can add one, just like on the Sony RX1, but that Sony doesn’t have an OVF either.)

0 upvotes
Trollshavethebestcandy
By Trollshavethebestcandy (2 months ago)

I can see a third party horizontal grip attaching to the tripod mount with an additional tripod mount L bracket center to lens barrel. This cam seriously needs a wifi option for remote capture and a cable release socket.

2 upvotes
Scottelly
By Scottelly (2 months ago)

Wi-fi makes cable release obsolete, but it could be done via USB. Wi-fi HAS to be included, but they have not said so. I wonder why not.

0 upvotes
HBowman
By HBowman (2 months ago)

This camera use USB cable trigger.

0 upvotes
Kendall Helmstetter Gelner
By Kendall Helmstetter Gelner (2 months ago)

You can always use an EyeFi card if you want WiFi support, why should Sigma spend extra developing that, and add more to the price of the camera when not everyone will want or need it?

0 upvotes
Jules Design
By Jules Design (2 months ago)

ok so I shoot product photography with a D800 and 105 mm prime
tethered, in-studio, I meter the light, gray card. Will this baby outperform my current camera???

1 upvote
stevechong
By stevechong (2 months ago)

Jules, you could try, you maybe surprise.

2 upvotes
Scottelly
By Scottelly (2 months ago)

Doubtful. There could be some advantages in some situations, but disadvantages in others. If you had said you were considering buying the Nikon, but you're thinking about this instead, I would say go Foveon. I guess it depends on how often you shoot products with a lot of red in them and if you want a greater depth of field. A DP3 Quattro would have the greater depth of field, save you money, and look cool. If you never move your camera you might just be better off with the Nikon. Remember that this camera does not have macro capability, and I'm willing to bet that your 105mm lens is a macro. It is also longer. The DP3 cameras have a 75mm equivalent focal length (50mm f2.8) lens.

Remember that the Nikon D800 has a greater dynamic range AND better HDR capabilities.

1 upvote
HBowman
By HBowman (2 months ago)

Foveon works great for me :p

www.hulyssbowman.com/images/Girls.jpg

2 upvotes
Kendall Helmstetter Gelner
By Kendall Helmstetter Gelner (2 months ago)

The DP3Q probably will, if you can live with the somewhat shorter focal length. The Current DP-M cameras already out-resolve the D800 in some situations, especially when there is fine detail.

0 upvotes
Trollshavethebestcandy
By Trollshavethebestcandy (2 months ago)

It would be interesting to have a sensor of two layers, quad blue on top and a semi random Fuji like array of red and green underneath. 20 megapixels in both layers. This would reduce the limitation of red issue being under only one layer instead of two. Any thoughts? Am I crazy?

1 upvote
Scottelly
By Scottelly (2 months ago)

That doesn't sound completely crazy to me. In fact, you might get a slight advantage in color resolution that way, with 20 megapixels of red and 20 megapixels of green. There would still have to be interpolation, but you just might have a good idea there. I don't think you would get the improvement in high-ISO that this sensor might have though. That would be a very interesting hybrid sensor.

0 upvotes
zodiacfml
By zodiacfml (2 months ago)

Not possible. The Foveon depends on the penetration of light into silicon to determine colors.

0 upvotes
Kendall Helmstetter Gelner
By Kendall Helmstetter Gelner (2 months ago)

Why would you have a random array of red or green when you can have them everywhere? That's what the Quattro sensor does, red and green sensors across the entire frame, just one above the other. Only they really are not exactly red/green, Sigma just labels them as "middle/bottom" because they capture more than just red/green.

0 upvotes
phazelag
By phazelag (2 months ago)

I am interested in this camera and I will always take function over looks but I think its ugly.

1 upvote
Trollshavethebestcandy
By Trollshavethebestcandy (2 months ago)

Maybe Sigma or third party will make an add on grip for the older DPM's to have the same grip as these :). Never mind... I will do it and make tens of dollars ;)

3 upvotes
Scottelly
By Scottelly (2 months ago)

For all you people who are complaining that it doesn't have a viewfinder, I refer you to the new Sony RX100 II, which also does not have a viewfinder. Both have optional viewfinders available, but the viewfinder of the Sigma is only $150, while the viewfinder for the Sony is $450. There are a a lot of cameras that have no viewfinder. It's nice to have the option to add one. If this new camera is compatible with the viewfinder for the older DP series cameras, then it has a viewfinder option, which works quite well, apparently. It's rated highly by users/owners.

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/613829-REG/Sigma_AV2900_AV2900_Viewfinder_f_Sigma.html

0 upvotes
Thoughts
By Thoughts (2 months ago)

Sigma's vf is opticsl,while sony's is electrical and actually a rather good one. Besides, sony offers a tilt screen.

1 upvote
jennyrae
By jennyrae (2 months ago)

optical vf is better and serve it's purpose.

1 upvote
yabokkie
By yabokkie (2 months ago)

it does have a viewfinder. someone may ask why it's not a hole peeping type then the answer is simple. we had keyhole optical viewfinders because the there was not enough light coming through the mirror and pentaprism (it will become very dimmed projected on a larger finderscreen), a limit thanks God we don't have any more.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 7 minutes after posting
1 upvote
maxnimo
By maxnimo (2 months ago)

That rear grip makes it stable to hold in hand, otherwise it slips out of your grasp.

1 upvote
Everlast66
By Everlast66 (2 months ago)

Do you mean when you use it as a phone handset?

3 upvotes
yabokkie
By yabokkie (2 months ago)

> otherwise it slips out of your grasp.

that otherwise happens when anyone tries to operate the camera (other than the shutter button and the dial, and maybe plus a button or two to the left of the thumb).

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
0 upvotes
Trollshavethebestcandy
By Trollshavethebestcandy (2 months ago)

Perfect!
I will tape my iPhone to it for the ultimate camera phone!!! :)! :)! :)!

1 upvote
E_Nielsen
By E_Nielsen (2 months ago)

As a DP2 Merrill owner, I am intrigued by the new Quattro technology and the promise that file sizes and processing times will be reduced. (Well done, Sigma!) However, I didn't see any mention of the feature I miss the most: image stabilization.

As much as I love the DP2 Merrill, I have been disappointed a number of times when I discovered that some very promising photos, which looked sharp in the LCD, were actually slightly shaken. In most cases, I realized that I should have used a tripod, but that was not always an option at the time. And doesn't carrying a tripod everywhere defeat the purpose of having a compact camera? I hope the Quattros will address this shortcoming.

3 upvotes
Mcmx
By Mcmx (2 months ago)

You probably know this, but just in case: you can set the "OK" button (the round one in the middle of the 4 cursor buttons) so that it gives you a 100% crop when you're in picture view mode. I find this lets you judge the sharpness extremely well.

Also, if there are fine lines/textures in a picture, I find there's often some sort of aliasing effect in the normal view on the LCD only when the picture is pin-sharp, but that's not as reliable, of course.

0 upvotes
yabokkie
By yabokkie (2 months ago)

> "OK" button (the round one in the middle of the 4 cursor buttons)

a quick fix maybe just disable those buttons or never use.

Comment edited 41 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
E_Nielsen
By E_Nielsen (2 months ago)

Great tips, Mcmx -- thank you!

I'm still hoping for image stabilization, though...

Comment edited 45 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
E_Nielsen
By E_Nielsen (2 months ago)

Yabokkie -- I'm sorry, but that makes no sense whatsoever. The subject is image stabilization.

2 upvotes
yabokkie
By yabokkie (2 months ago)

.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 14 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
technotic
By technotic (2 months ago)

That's the most sensible comment you've ever made yab. Well done.

2 upvotes
RussellInCincinnati
By RussellInCincinnati (2 months ago)

Actually light, compact cameras (where for example the optical center of the lens is nicely physically close to the tripod mount, and there is not a lot of weight hanging out away from the tripod mount) make it PRACTICAL to take a light weight tripod with you everywhere.

0 upvotes
KGP
By KGP (2 months ago)

Sigma: "And now that we caught your attention with the weird design, take a look out our new sensor..." well done Sigma, nice trick!

As for the sensor, let's all applaud Sigma (and Fuji of course) for being innovating in a filed where all the other manufacturers are not dare to evοlve. New sensors is evolution, not +2 cross type AF Points or + 1fps more!

12 upvotes
petemod
By petemod (2 months ago)

On their website it says something along the lines of "specifications and appearance subject to change without notice." So maybe that was exactly their plan, release photos of a strange looking camera to get everyone talking.

Clearly it's working.

1 upvote
udris
By udris (2 months ago)

Very few posters have any interest in what sigma has ever offered camera wise"..... yes they are great little cameras but a bit of a niche. Personally I would consider upgrading from my original DP1

1 upvote
LamarLamb
By LamarLamb (2 months ago)

I like the Foveon sensor. Color rendition is excellent as long as ISO is kept low so hopefully this new sensor will up the usable ISO a bit without impacting the image detail. I don't know about the reverse grip though, looks like it is made for taking left-handed selfies.....

1 upvote
Xentinus
By Xentinus (2 months ago)

An epic fantasy from Sigma :)

2 upvotes
skytripper
By skytripper (2 months ago)

Ugly as sin! Otherwise... Hey look, it's a camera!

3 upvotes
maxnimo
By maxnimo (2 months ago)

sky, I disagree.

2 upvotes
kadardr
By kadardr (2 months ago)

Try to consider this: for one-hand shooting at arm length and with a firm grip, this DP Quattro design seems to give the best ergonomy. But is this ergonomy necessary for a Sigma DP camera? It may be that the best grip for such a camera is a tripod. Other questions like the sufficient operational speed and the efficient and practical UI are to be answered later by the early adopters.

0 upvotes
yabokkie
By yabokkie (2 months ago)

> is this ergonomy necessary for a Sigma DP camera?

it's the ergonomy good for no camera.
simply wrong design.

Comment edited 50 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
Cameracist
By Cameracist (2 months ago)

How are you not bored by your own nonsense, yabbokie?

8 upvotes
technotic
By technotic (2 months ago)

Boring yab. Tell us another one of your "jokes".

1 upvote
nathondetroit
By nathondetroit (2 months ago)

My understanding is that these Sigma compacts are great for landscape photography. Stunning resolution, and the focus and shot-to-shot slowness doesn't matter.

In that case, this form factor still beats the size/weight of a DSLR equivalent.

Go Sigma, at least for pushing sensor technology forward (as is Fuji).

3 upvotes
Biological_Viewfinder
By Biological_Viewfinder (2 months ago)

This is a design failure.
It might have been nice if the grip section were entirely removed and placed into the user's hand as a wireless-remote. But this is just a complete fail here. Ugly, unnecessarily bulky, and just weird looking.
..

3 upvotes
yabokkie
By yabokkie (2 months ago)

if the camera can be held firmly between the thumb and palm the three fingers (middle, ring, pinkie) may be freed for an acordion type keyboard like this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Jupiter_bayan_accordion.JPG

I may try from 5 keys and a joystick in two columns.

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
Scottelly
By Scottelly (2 months ago)

Maybe you're wrong.

1 upvote
Charles Chien
By Charles Chien (2 months ago)

When I first saw it, I thought "finally someone remakes a digital version of a Hasselblad XPAN camera." I should have realized that the lens isn't near the center of the body.

0 upvotes
jozee41
By jozee41 (2 months ago)

I don't care what a camera looks like on the outside. All that matters is how well I like the way it performs and how pleased I am with the results. So far, my Sigma DPs out perform by far any other cameras I have owned for the kind of photography I like to do.

12 upvotes
Digitall
By Digitall (2 months ago)

Out of curiosity, but, the word "quattro" is a registered trademark of Audi AG?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quattro_(four-wheel-drive_system)

Anyway, I find it interesting when people say that this camera is pocketable :)
Obviously the pockets are relative, but traditionally refer to this camera as pocketable is still a significant difference.
And the boomerang effect will not help at all.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
2 upvotes
Provia_fan
By Provia_fan (2 months ago)

Yeah, apparently you can register a language as a trademark :D

0 upvotes
runamuck817
By runamuck817 (2 months ago)

You cannot copyright or trademark a number. This is why Intel dropped the x86 names for CPUs and went with names. Quattro is Spanish for 4, and cannot be copyrighted or trademarked.

1 upvote
Alien from Mars
By Alien from Mars (2 months ago)

Wishful thinking, runamuck...
http://www.denverpost.com/breakingnews/ci_24956187/sweet-deal-candy-crush-developer-trademarks-word-candy
They copyrighted the word "candy" ... That's completely beyond my understanding but still..

0 upvotes
Mcmx
By Mcmx (2 months ago)

Of course it can be trademarked. And it is trademarked. In Europe, and in the US. But most likely for cars, not cameras. I haven't checked.

And btw., quattro is Italian, not Spanish.

3 upvotes
RobertSigmund
By RobertSigmund (2 months ago)

uno, dos, tres, cuatro

1 upvote
Scottelly
By Scottelly (2 months ago)

Trademark shmademark. Let's see them try to enforce their trademark "rights" against Sigma. All that a trademark does for you is give you a little legal advantage. You also have to prove damages, and there will be no damages occurring here, so Audi will not even try. As for trademarking the word "candy" I guess it is an intimidation tactic to be used in the event that a competitive software company tries to launch a line of games with the word candy in the name. If the company is big enough though, there will probably be no law suit, because they have lots of good lawyers to fight it. The company with the most and best lawyers wins!

0 upvotes
Mcmx
By Mcmx (2 months ago)

@scottelly I am sorry but that is mostly wrong, but then I am one of those lawyers you refer to. But you do make good posts about the relevant topic here, so all is well. ;)

0 upvotes
E_Nielsen
By E_Nielsen (2 months ago)

It is common practice for the same trademark to be granted to multiple owners when that trademarked name is used in unrelated industries. As far as I know, Audi doesn't make cameras...

1 upvote
Joffun
By Joffun (2 months ago)

And a good example of unrelated goods having the same trademarked names:
Car - VW Polo
Clothing - Ralph Lauren Polo
Sweets - Polo mints

1 upvote
Scottelly
By Scottelly (2 months ago)

Imagine an SD1 Quattro with the same new processor. It would have:

1. A buffer with 50% more RAW image capacity (9 shots vs. 6), because file sizes will be smaller.
2. It would have the ability to empty the 9 images from the buffer in about half the time (if it has 2x processing speed)
3. The number of photos that could be shot with one battery charge will increase by at least 50%. (smaller files - less power consumed per image)
4. The JPEG images right out of the camera will be almost 20 megapixels, an improvement over the current 14.7 megapixel images.
5. High ISO noise (and maybe even low ISO noise) characteristics should be improved.
6. Sharper RAW images could result (for the majority of photos), even as the number of total megapixels comes down, because most landscape photos and even many photos of flowers and other things that are normally shot close-up include a lot of blue color.
7. Photos will write to the same CF cards faster, because they will have less data in them.

2 upvotes
yabokkie
By yabokkie (2 months ago)

> because file sizes will be smaller.

that's why Sigma needs to have a single pixel Foveon.

0 upvotes
rfsIII
By rfsIII (2 months ago)

Beautiful and unique. What more can one ask of a camera?

7 upvotes
Everlast66
By Everlast66 (2 months ago)

To be functional and usable would be a good start

11 upvotes
Scottelly
By Scottelly (2 months ago)

The whole idea is to make it MORE functional and usable. That's WHY the new design kicks ass!

Bigger battery
Better sensor
Less power consumption
Faster processor
More comfortable "grip" design
Better screen
Better high-ISO images
Better low-ISO images!
Smaller amount of data per image (faster write times)

. . . and it looks cooler than the older cameras too!

1 upvote
yabokkie
By yabokkie (2 months ago)

we know the grip is a rubbish design but
let's hope the sensor is not.

0 upvotes
Scottelly
By Scottelly (2 months ago)

No we don't. It may turn out to be a revolutionary design, which other companies end up copying.

3 upvotes
technotic
By technotic (2 months ago)

Yab is using the royal "we".

1 upvote
Gesture
By Gesture (2 months ago)

We can spin things any way we want, but 15 down to 4.9 is not progress. If the Foveon issues could be solved, you go 10:10:10 at a minimum. That huge body begs an integral EVF or swivel design.

1 upvote
Scottelly
By Scottelly (2 months ago)

I agree with you about the EVF, but the current DP series does not have one, and I think Sigma is happy with how successful they have been with that line. As far as the image quality, I have been thinking about it a lot since yesterday, when I learned about it, and I realize that most landscape photos actually have a LOT of blue in them. Every white cloud or house or hat or blob of snow has a significant amount of blue in it. Many of the landscape photos I have shot and seen are dominated by blue . . . blue sea, blue skies, etc. A scene of white, fluffy clouds in a blue sky, with a line of snow-capped mountains in the background would benefit greatly. The more I think about it, the more I like the Quattro sensor! I'm starting to think the Quattro sensor may be a miraculous invention, reducing file sizes, while reducing noise and improving the resolution of most photos. THAT is a huge thing. There is a whole list of other benefits. I can't wait for an SD1 Quattro!

1 upvote
yabokkie
By yabokkie (2 months ago)

the next big thing with Foveon may be color filters.

0 upvotes
technotic
By technotic (2 months ago)

What's the next big thing from yab?

0 upvotes
Scottelly
By Scottelly (2 months ago)

The viewfinders for the DP cameras are $150 and get high ratings from buyers:

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/613829-REG/Sigma_AV2900_AV2900_Viewfinder_f_Sigma.html

1 upvote
jennyrae
By jennyrae (2 months ago)

why is not progress? this is first step of sigma to implement refinement of Foveon sensor. and 10:10:10 ratio is not possible to improve Foveon result. you just downsize pixel. increase pixel to 20 with equal ratio still the same foveon result and no different. 4:1:1 ratio of foveon address Foveon weakness and do not compromise foveon colors.

in theory, Quattro implementation result to 20MP overall resolution with foveon colors + added benefit of larger dr and high iso performance and speed and color accuracy. current Merrill output 24MP resolution equivalent. difference is not big but more headroom and better result with Quattro since Merrill is limited.

Quattro is 20 MP DP camera so why is it not good?

1 upvote
Kendall Helmstetter Gelner
By Kendall Helmstetter Gelner (2 months ago)

It's not 15 down to 4.9. It's 15 gone up to 19. You need to read how the sensor works again. You are going to be astonished when you see the sample images.

0 upvotes
Dimit
By Dimit (2 months ago)

The design is AWESOME! Eyropeans will like it,Americans will hate it!
But let's see what it can do..high iso? color articrafts? still ideal sharpness? priceeeee?

4 upvotes
Scottelly
By Scottelly (2 months ago)

I don't think Americans will hate it at all. We didn't hate the iPhone, did we? We don't hate the Tesla. We like some really weird stuff in America. This camera looks like it will be a winner, with all sorts of improvements. I just hope they make it well under $1,000. I think I want to buy one ASAP!

1 upvote
yabokkie
By yabokkie (2 months ago)

there are Americans who are Sigma employees.

0 upvotes
unknown member
By (unknown member) (2 months ago)

"The design is AWESOME! Eyropeans will like it,Americans will hate it!"

Europe is not a country and European is not a culture. Why are you comparing a continent of many different countries and cultures to a country?

0 upvotes
JEROME NOLAS
By JEROME NOLAS (2 months ago)

66 more messages and camera is doomed...

1 upvote
ericwestpheling
By ericwestpheling (2 months ago)

so they didn't fix any of the ergonomic issues, added no evf, and they abandoned the main draw of full-color sampling for each pixel...go team Sigma! You will make a great wikipedia footnote about bad product design.

3 upvotes
Johan Borg
By Johan Borg (2 months ago)

While the new sensor may not be as easy for Sigma's marketing department to sell, it looks like it solves several of the real-world problems with the previous generation while increasing the overall resolution (and if you have to be a purist, there's a 4.9mp "pure" mode). In terms of ergonomics we'll have to try it out, but adding both a grip and a second control wheel sure sounds like improvement on paper.

3 upvotes
Raist3d
By Raist3d (2 months ago)

Johan- can you (please) point out where in the Sigma specs there is such a "pure" mode? I see it could be done, but I do not see such mode in the specs or press release. Thanks.

Comment edited 25 seconds after posting
1 upvote
Johan Borg
By Johan Borg (2 months ago)

http://www.sigma-global.com/en/cameras/dp-series/
In the section Number of Recording Pixels there are two options for RAW: HIGH with 4:1:1 and LOW with 1:1:1 - Top, Middle and Bottom layers all record 2,704×1,808 pixels.

Comment edited 22 seconds after posting
4 upvotes
Raist3d
By Raist3d (2 months ago)

Thank you so much! I missed that! That would be a true x3 capture with a higher samples "blue" layer- Iso could be quite decen in that mode hopefully!

Thanks again!

0 upvotes
Scottelly
By Scottelly (2 months ago)

They didn't fix any of the ergonomic issues? I think one of the issues was how the camera was not comfortable to hold. THAT they did fix, by adding a big grip end. It looks like they fixed or at least improved four of the main issues too . . . the battery life (by reducing the need for processing, increasing the size of the battery, and improving the processor), the speed of operation (by reducing file sizes and improving the processor speed), the noise levels (by increasing the size of the red and green photosites), and the file sizes (by reducing the number of red and green pixels dramatically). The amazing thing is how reducing the number of green and red pixels will not detract from the resolution of most images. In fact, with more blue pixels, the majority of photos will look even sharper! (most things have a lot of blue in them - white buildings, blue skies and oceans, snow-capped mountains, yellow flowers, etc.)

3 upvotes
RussellInCincinnati
By RussellInCincinnati (2 months ago)

Scottelly can share your enthusiasm and appreciation of promising improvements to the DPx series cameras, but will also point out that "yellow flowers" is not a good example of scene elements with a lot of blue in them.

0 upvotes
unknown member
By (unknown member) (2 months ago)

"While the new sensor may not be as easy for Sigma's marketing department to sell, it looks like it solves several of the real-world problems with the previous generation while increasing the overall resolution"

For those of us that are OK with the current Foveon's low ISO only usability I don't see see how this new design is going to improve image quality. It goes against everything the Foveon sensor stood for.

0 upvotes
edvard s5
By edvard s5 (2 months ago)

For me design is simply genial.
Imagine how nice it fits to the inner pocket of a jacket, the grip stays outside, you need not to push the whole hand into the pocket to get it out, :). Very fast for every day/street photography.
It seems there is a lot of space for camera designers left.

12 upvotes
Frank_BR
By Frank_BR (2 months ago)

>It seems there is a lot of space for camera designers left.

What about a belt holster? :)

0 upvotes
misha
By misha (2 months ago)

It would be if it did not have the big protruding lens - it would get snagged in the pocket every time. As it is, looks like a throughback to the early digital camera days, when cameras looked like computer gadgets (if you remember first Apple and Ricoh cameras).

1 upvote
HubertChen
By HubertChen (2 months ago)

Many DP Merrill users have 2 or three of these cameras, as each lens comes with a camera. For such a use case it is surprising to design a camera that protrudes in the rear and in the front, making the carry bag for several DP Merrill cameras that much bigger.

4 upvotes
ZoranHR
By ZoranHR (2 months ago)

Still smaller than slr with 3 good lenses.

2 upvotes
Scottelly
By Scottelly (2 months ago)

Don't forget that some people like to use just one prime lens. While this camera will be slightly larger in one dimension, it will be slightly smaller in another dimension. That might be a big plus for most DP camera buyers/owners. I can see people upgrading to these for the battery life and faster processing, and they will get a more comfortable camera, smaller file sizes, a better screen, and sharper images (in most instances) as a few extra added benefits.

0 upvotes
estankov
By estankov (2 months ago)

This is how this works
you have one bag with 2-3 vertical long pockets (or a side mesh pocket on a backpack too) You slide the camera side in with the grip to the top. grab pull shoot. that's how I carry my current cameras.
In terms of carry this is good. How it is in the hand will have to be seen when it comes out. Looks a bit flimsy with no place for the pinky.

0 upvotes
Blackraven
By Blackraven (2 months ago)

Don't mind the shape but it does seem too long overall. Whether i will buy this or not depends on the price. Im sure the IQ will be wonderful. All the better if it has improved processing time and battery life. I have the DP1m and DP2m. Was going to buy the DP3m until this came along and has made me have a rethink.
may still get the DP3m to make up the set as, from past experience, im sure Sigma will price this high for at least the next 6 months - one year.

2 upvotes
Total comments: 774
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