A Very Subjective Evaluation of the SD1

Started Feb 21, 2012 | Discussions thread
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larryj Veteran Member • Posts: 9,846
A Very Subjective Evaluation of the SD1

As you know I had a SD1 on loan from Kendall for about a month. I did, what I called a run and shoot process to get as many shots in as I could during the time I had the camera. Mother nature cooperated some of the time and I got some great Foveon/Sigma weather. What did I think of the SD1, simply put I will purchase one as soon as I can save the money for the camera and a couple of new lenses, and maybe a new tripod.

The SD1 is very demanding regarding motion blur as I found out to my chagrin, as about 30% of my shots showed some degree of motion blur on close inspection. In fact I will be using my tripod a lot more when shooting my SD14/15 going forward ;O).

When the light is right and the camera handled properly the image quality of the SD1 is startling. The details, color and sharpness is remarkable. My SD1 kit will include the 8-16 mm lens, the 24-70 mm lens and the 70-200 mm lens and maybe a 70 mm macro lens. These are the lenses Kendall let me use with his camera and they all performed well on the SD1 and will cover most of the subjects I shoot.

I like the feel of the camera, it fits well in my hand, and I like the new menu system. I liked the locking latch on the battery compartment. The auto focus seem to work well when I used it, although I am a throw back to earlier times and mainly use manual focusing (some old habit are hard to break).

In all my running and shooting I did not shot comparison shots with the SD15, however, I found the SD1 to have better dynamic range then the SD14/15 and to perform better at ISO 400 and 800. The detail capture was miles ahead on the SD1.

The files a crop-able as the next two photos show: the crane was walking across the field in from of me and I grabbed a shot with distracting elements. I cropped out some of the elements and had a much nicer shot without losing detail.

In this shot there was a jumbled and out of focus foreground, which I cropped out and got a pleasing photo.

This is a straight shot using the 28mm lens.

I am going to miss the beast and am looking forward to getting my own as soon as possible. I will continue to shoot my SD14/15 as they are not slouches in image quality.

If you can see the light, you can photograph it
Quote from Myron Woods

 larryj's gear list:larryj's gear list
Sigma SD1 Merrill Sigma 24-70mm F2.8 EX DG HSM Sigma 150-500mm F5-6.3 DG OS HSM Sigma 105mm F2.8 EX DG OS HSM Sigma 18-35mm F1.8 DC HSM Art +1 more
Sigma SD1 Sigma SD14 Sigma SD15
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