Sigma Musings (Long) - Where Goeth Thou?

Started Oct 9, 2013 | Discussions thread
Shoei Regular Member • Posts: 228
Re: Sigma Musings (Long) - Where Goeth Thou?

I think Sigma as a company will continue to be profitable and will be around for many many years to come. The lens quality coming out for various platforms are now very good, they are being innovative (for example the USB dock) the pricing is competative and talking to stores - for the Canon and Nikon mount based lenses at least sell very well and are well stocked.

SD's and SA mount lenses were a different matter. Stores will generally only stock what has rapid turnover, which is not the SA lenses and SD camera lines. It was interesting recently in Singapore. I bought my lenses in Australia before travelling - so wasn't really after any more for now - but I learned the fastest way to get the pushy sales guys off my back in Sim Lim Square - was to ask if they stocked SA mount lenses They'd leave me alone at that point so I could get on with looking at tripods and heads. I only found one "old stock" SD1 with a 24-70 as a kit the entire time I was in Singapore ..... and no one carried any SA mount lenses.

The SD line is frustrating. The sensor is great, the shutter etc very good .... but the visible bells and whistles just aren't there and for the bulk of DSLR purchasers. Lets face it ... most entry level to mid range DSLRs never get out of Auto mode most of their lives and movie-mode is considered mandatory as the average purchaser doesn't want to carry a separate video camera for holidays.

This is not a good thing. As seasoned Sigma DSLR veterans we're all used to the love hate relationship with Sigma Photo Pro, We're annoyed by the lack of x3f support in Photoshop but we live with it, we're used to the slow writes to cards, we've become accustomed to the AF nuances and we're kind of ok with the other rough edges. But - while we're a loyal group of professionals and enthusiasts .... we're only a tiny portion of the market in general.

If the goal is to increase volume of sales to keep the SD line viable, maybe the next Sigma DSLR build shoud focus on the prominent annoyances (buffer size, processing speed, AF etc) more and less on the x3 sensor (which is already quite formidable at the SD1M's present price point). Effort polishing and smoothing a few of the "harsh" edges of the SD line should offer a reasonable bang-for-buck per development costs. Even just fixing the awkward bits of Sigma Photo Pro would be of huge benefit in making the system appealing to a wider audience.

Maybe there should also be an "entry level" x3 DSLR (SD16?) line maintained as an introduction to the technology ? Since the SD15 is being dropped that leaves the SD1M as the only DLSR offering - and IMHO it is not an entry level camera !!!!

Sigma DSLRs have an almost "cult" following and a very specific niche (heck - I've been hooked since the SD10) but entry to the system for beginners or enthusiasts transition from other systems is daunting given the secondary to IQ (but prominent) deficiencies.

great for "purists" but not so great for mass market.

As a counterpoint, the mass market is shifting away from traditional cameras ... and has been for some time so the market - while significant - in general is declining.

I'm personally hoping - as I'm sure we all are - that the SD line has a future.


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 Shoei's gear list:Shoei's gear list
Sigma SD15 Sigma SD1 Merrill Sony a7R III Sigma 10-20mm F4-5.6 EX DC HSM Sigma 50mm F1.4 EX DG HSM +8 more
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