Sigma SA Mount

Started 3 months ago | Discussions
Lynxo Regular Member • Posts: 372
Sigma SA Mount

Hi,

Can you fill me in? When Sigma made their own camera bodies, was it a legal issue they did not choose to use existing mounts such as Canon and Nikon?

SA mounts lens are not exactly cheap and you are stuck with this mount. Would they have not sold more camera bodies using a Canon or Nikon mount? 
So why are they making their new lens in Leica mount?

So their trend is to continue to make lenses with other mounts and ditch Sigma mount for future bodies?

Their lens conversion service is great but price is too steep.

Used Sigma 17-50mm going around $220-240. Sigma mount, no used, retail $369. So you end up paying more for pretty much same thing. Not very motivating.  No incentive to buy Sigma other than their sensor.

Almost $400 for dedicated TTL flash and not even available?I’m sticking to manual flash, no choice anyway. I’m  just scratching my head.

Jeffry7 Regular Member • Posts: 254
Re: Sigma SA Mount

Sigma is part of the L-Mount alliance along with Panasonic and Leica. The three have agreed to make cameras and lenses that conform to that standard.

I am guessing that besides the advantage of the alliance, Sigma moved away from the SA Mount because of the flange distance. The SA mount has a DSLR style flange distance and the whole industry is moving to mirrorless.

There is already an adapter for SA Mount lenses to L-Mount bodies. I plan to get one when the time comes so I can continue to use my SA lenses.

dmccoy Junior Member • Posts: 25
Re: Sigma SA Mount

Jeffry7 wrote:

Sigma is part of the L-Mount alliance along with Panasonic and Leica. The three have agreed to make cameras and lenses that conform to that standard.

I am guessing that besides the advantage of the alliance, Sigma moved away from the SA Mount because of the flange distance. The SA mount has a DSLR style flange distance and the whole industry is moving to mirrorless.

There is already an adapter for SA Mount lenses to L-Mount bodies. I plan to get one when the time comes so I can continue to use my SA lenses.

I've heard mention of the flange distance change.  I assume it refers to the distance from the mount plane to the sensor plane.  What changes with mirrorless and what is driving it?

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Jeffry7 Regular Member • Posts: 254
Re: Sigma SA Mount

dmccoy wrote:

Jeffry7 wrote:

Sigma is part of the L-Mount alliance along with Panasonic and Leica. The three have agreed to make cameras and lenses that conform to that standard.

I am guessing that besides the advantage of the alliance, Sigma moved away from the SA Mount because of the flange distance. The SA mount has a DSLR style flange distance and the whole industry is moving to mirrorless.

There is already an adapter for SA Mount lenses to L-Mount bodies. I plan to get one when the time comes so I can continue to use my SA lenses.

I've heard mention of the flange distance change. I assume it refers to the distance from the mount plane to the sensor plane. What changes with mirrorless and what is driving it?

With a DSLR you have a movable mirror. The mirror reflects light up into the viewfinder. When you press the shutter the mirror swings out of the way.

The lens has to be far enough from the sensor to allow for this swinging mirror.

Mirrorless cameras are mechanically simpler. Also how many shots per second you can take is related to how fast you can move the mirror in a DSLR.

In a mirrorless camera, the viewfinder is now electronic and read directly off of the sensor.

I think their are two drivers. The first is that mirrorless cameras are simpler to make. There are just fewer moving parts. Second taking out the mirror allows for short flange distance lenses. I think there is debate about if shorter flange distance lenses are better, but what is certain is that lens makers have more options with a shorter flange distance.

xpatUSA
xpatUSA Forum Pro • Posts: 17,981
Re: Sigma SA Mount
3

Lynxo wrote:

Hi,

Can you fill me in? When Sigma made their own camera bodies, was it a legal issue they did not choose to use existing mounts such as Canon and Nikon?

SA mounts lens are not exactly cheap and you are stuck with this mount. Would they have not sold more camera bodies using a Canon or Nikon mount?
So why are they making their new lens in Leica mount?

So their trend is to continue to make lenses with other mounts and ditch Sigma mount for future bodies?

Their lens conversion service is great but price is too steep.

Used Sigma 17-50mm going around $220-240. Sigma mount, no used, retail $369. So you end up paying more for pretty much same thing. Not very motivating. No incentive to buy Sigma other than their sensor.

Almost $400 for dedicated TTL flash and not even available?I’m sticking to manual flash, no choice anyway. I’m just scratching my head.

"Mechanically, the (inner) SA-mount is similar to the Pentax K-mount as well,[2] but with a flange focal distance of 44.00 mm, identical to that of the Canon EF-mount. Like the EF-mount, the SA-mount uses electrical communication between body and lens, and in fact uses the same signalling lines and protocol as the EF-mount, despite the physical incompatibility."

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sigma_SA-mount

https://www.kentfaith.com/mount_55

https://www.sigmaphoto.com/article/to-our-customers-using-sigma-sa-mount-cameras

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danski0224 Senior Member • Posts: 1,219
Re: Sigma SA Mount

Lynxo wrote:

Hi,

Can you fill me in? When Sigma made their own camera bodies, was it a legal issue they did not choose to use existing mounts such as Canon and Nikon?

I would have two guesses:

The EF mount (Canon) would have been new at the time, and most certainly patented. The other is that the companies in question are all Japanese, and as I understand it, the companies will not blatantly copy/steal from each other.*

*: While Sigma did not steal the Canon EF mount in carbon copy form, Sigma chose to use the same flange distance as Canon so the Sigma lenses would optically work on the camera body with the biggest market share, and the electrical pinouts are the same, but in a different place.

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OP Lynxo Regular Member • Posts: 372
Re: Sigma SA Mount

Thanks for clarifying. I was really hesitant but ended up buying the SDQ kit. I forget that I bought a camera body that was released 4 years ago.

This alliance with Panasonic and Leica, I don’t quite understand either. Panasonic lens are four thirds type lens, that does not matter? Leica mount, are these are new ‘Leica’ glass lens with autofocus and electronic data coupled?

I understand the crazy long flange part, I thought the SDQ and SDQH are mirrorless, so why add the flange? Not that it matters.

OP Lynxo Regular Member • Posts: 372
Re: Sigma SA Mount

Jeffry7 wrote:

Sigma is part of the L-Mount alliance along with Panasonic and Leica. The three have agreed to make cameras and lenses that conform to that standard.

I am guessing that besides the advantage of the alliance, Sigma moved away from the SA Mount because of the flange distance. The SA mount has a DSLR style flange distance and the whole industry is moving to mirrorless.

There is already an adapter for SA Mount lenses to L-Mount bodies. I plan to get one when the time comes so I can continue to use my SA lenses.

Hopefully that adaptor allows full AF, OS,  etc... I just checked it on Adorama, some very low reviews when they used it on the Panasonic SH1, maybe software incompatibility.

GCL Regular Member • Posts: 179
Re: Sigma SA Mount
1

Lynxo wrote:

Thanks for clarifying. I was really hesitant but ended up buying the SDQ kit. I forget that I bought a camera body that was released 4 years ago.

This alliance with Panasonic and Leica, I don’t quite understand either. Panasonic lens are four thirds type lens, that does not matter? Leica mount, are these are new ‘Leica’ glass lens with autofocus and electronic data coupled?

I understand the crazy long flange part, I thought the SDQ and SDQH are mirrorless, so why add the flange? Not that it matters.

Panasonic's new S line lenses are designed for mirrorless full frame cameras. They are completely different from their M43 lenses.  The L mount alliance is for the new mount that Leica patented and agreed to license with Panasonic for its full frame cameras (S1, S1R, S1H, and new S5). Sigma joined the alliance as well to design its new mirrorless line of lenses around the L mount for access to Panasonic and Leica camera users - as well as its own camera users (the Sigma fp and - hopefully - future full-frame Foveon sensor cameras).

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Jeffry7 Regular Member • Posts: 254
Re: Sigma SA Mount
1

Lynxo wrote:

Thanks for clarifying. I was really hesitant but ended up buying the SDQ kit. I forget that I bought a camera body that was released 4 years ago.

This alliance with Panasonic and Leica, I don’t quite understand either. Panasonic lens are four thirds type lens, that does not matter? Leica mount, are these are new ‘Leica’ glass lens with autofocus and electronic data coupled?

I understand the crazy long flange part, I thought the SDQ and SDQH are mirrorless, so why add the flange? Not that it matters.

Panasonic also makes L-Mount cameras and lenses. It is interesting that they formed an alliance for MFT (with Olympus) and another for L-Mount.

I think the idea is that the lenses all be interchangeable. Sigma lens, Leica body, no problem. It depends on what all is in the standard. For example, I expect autofucus in the standard because autofocus is standard, but possibly optical stabilization is not. (Interestingly all 3 members of the alliance use some form of contrast detection for focusing.)

Sigma already makes lenses for other camera bodies that have working auto focus and communicate electronically. It is just that with the L-Mount alliance, the manufacturers agree to share the details of the mount and make interchangeable lens and cameras.

The SDQ and SDQH are mirrorless, but the SA mount lenses were all designed for DSLR cameras. So one way to make sure their first mirrorless camera would not alienate Sigma fans, was to make sure it had the same mount as the current crop of lenses. They could have made a new mount and offered an adapter, but they didn't.

We spend a lot of money on gear and disruptions like changing the mount are annoying.

PT
PT Contributing Member • Posts: 863
Re: Sigma SA Mount
1

Re SA lens & Flash, I have items for sale, PM sent.

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rf-design
rf-design Contributing Member • Posts: 610
Re: Sigma SA Mount
1

I bought 3/4 of my SA lenses used to significant less than in other mounts. Typical used SA lenses get rare after Sigma decide to left the mount. They state that all new DSLR, not DN, lenses get a SA mount version. But they only release DN versions since.

So my guess is that most SA owners stick with there lenses and the useability increase significant with the SA/E and SA/L mount converters. So you can use SA lenses in two other camera systems. For my own i bought some FF SA lenses only to use them only on a Sony A7 II. They where cheaper than in other mounts. The Sony A7 II AF works better with SA/E converter than the SDQ native with the same lens. The older Sony Nex-6 AF is similar to the SDQ.

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Johan Borg Veteran Member • Posts: 3,005
Re: Sigma SA Mount

Lynxo wrote:

Jeffry7 wrote:

Sigma is part of the L-Mount alliance along with Panasonic and Leica. The three have agreed to make cameras and lenses that conform to that standard.

I am guessing that besides the advantage of the alliance, Sigma moved away from the SA Mount because of the flange distance. The SA mount has a DSLR style flange distance and the whole industry is moving to mirrorless.

There is already an adapter for SA Mount lenses to L-Mount bodies. I plan to get one when the time comes so I can continue to use my SA lenses.

Hopefully that adaptor allows full AF, OS, etc... I just checked it on Adorama, some very low reviews when they used it on the Panasonic SH1, maybe software incompatibility.

Most complaints seem to come from people expecting continuous AF (which is hard with DSLR lenses due to contrast detect AF in the camera) and while using lenses from other brands than Sigma (typically Canon, for the EF to L version of this adapter). Neither should be a major concern if you come from a Sigma camera...

Scottelly
Scottelly Forum Pro • Posts: 15,063
Re: Sigma SA Mount
1

Lynxo wrote:

Hi,

Can you fill me in? When Sigma made their own camera bodies, was it a legal issue they did not choose to use existing mounts such as Canon and Nikon?

Sigma did not choose to use existing mounts for the same reason Canon did not choose to use an existing mount for their EOS line of cameras years ago. They wanted to sell Canon lenses. Why would Sigma make a camera for people to use their Canon or Nikon lenses on it? There's no money in making cameras in low volume, like Sigma does. It's the lenses that make these companies the bulk of their profits (when there are profits).

SA mounts lens are not exactly cheap and you are stuck with this mount.

Well, you can use the Sigma MC-11 and MC-21 mount adapters (to adapt your SA-mount lenses to other mounts, like the L mount or the Sony E mount).

https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1463161-REG/sigma_sigma_mc_21_mount_converter_lens.html

https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1234035-REG/sigma_89s965_mc_11_mount_adapter_for.html

Would they have not sold more camera bodies using a Canon or Nikon mount?
So why are they making their new lens in Leica mount?

Because they joined the L Mount Alliance.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/L-Mount_Alliance

https://www.sigmaphoto.com/l-mount-alliance

So their trend is to continue to make lenses with other mounts and ditch Sigma mount for future bodies?

They have ditched the SA mount, just like Sony ditched the A mount and Canon and Nikon have ditched their DSLR mounts.

Their lens conversion service is great but price is too steep.

I agree. You'd be better off selling your used lens and buying a different used lens in the mount of your choice.

Used Sigma 17-50mm going around $220-240. Sigma mount, no used, retail $369.

You can't get the mount changed on the older lenses - only the "Global Vision" lenses (i.e. Art, Sport, and Contemporary). Complicated, huh?

So you end up paying more for pretty much same thing. Not very motivating. No incentive to buy Sigma other than their sensor.

That's true, and probably why Sigma decided to join the L Mount Alliance, rather than trying to go it alone again, with their own mirrorless mount, like Nikon and Canon are doing. Sony lead the way, so they had no choice but to make their own new mirrorless mount, but Nikon could just use the Sony E mount. They chose not to, because they are big enough, I guess. Panasonic is a huge company with a lot of experience, and even they decided to go with a tried and true mount - the Leica L mount. I think Sigma was smart to follow suit, and join the alliance. They will benefit greatly.

Almost $400 for dedicated TTL flash and not even available?I’m sticking to manual flash, no choice anyway. I’m just scratching my head.

What are you scratching your head about? Is it the fact that there are very few strobes offered by Sigma for their cameras? You can use strobes for Canon camera, if I'm not mistaken.

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Scottelly
Scottelly Forum Pro • Posts: 15,063
Re: Sigma SA Mount

Jeffry7 wrote:

dmccoy wrote:

Jeffry7 wrote:

Sigma is part of the L-Mount alliance along with Panasonic and Leica. The three have agreed to make cameras and lenses that conform to that standard.

I am guessing that besides the advantage of the alliance, Sigma moved away from the SA Mount because of the flange distance. The SA mount has a DSLR style flange distance and the whole industry is moving to mirrorless.

There is already an adapter for SA Mount lenses to L-Mount bodies. I plan to get one when the time comes so I can continue to use my SA lenses.

I've heard mention of the flange distance change. I assume it refers to the distance from the mount plane to the sensor plane. What changes with mirrorless and what is driving it?

With a DSLR you have a movable mirror. The mirror reflects light up into the viewfinder. When you press the shutter the mirror swings out of the way.

The lens has to be far enough from the sensor to allow for this swinging mirror.

Mirrorless cameras are mechanically simpler. Also how many shots per second you can take is related to how fast you can move the mirror in a DSLR.

In a mirrorless camera, the viewfinder is now electronic and read directly off of the sensor.

I think their are two drivers. The first is that mirrorless cameras are simpler to make. There are just fewer moving parts. Second taking out the mirror allows for short flange distance lenses. I think there is debate about if shorter flange distance lenses are better, but what is certain is that lens makers have more options with a shorter flange distance.

I think the biggest advantage of having a short flange distance is that allows people to adapt a wide range of lenses to be used on the cameras that have the short flange distance. Sony's short flange distance shows how this can be beneficial to the company. The m4/3 cameras attracted a lot of buyers because of their short flange distance, and the subsequent development of a wide variety of adapters, which allowed lenses from various brands of cameras to be used on the m4/3 camera bodies. I think Sony decided they'd benefit from such a situation, and developed their E mount and NEX bodies to take advantage of that situation. It worked. No doubt that is one of the many considerations that Sigma took into account, when deciding to switch mounts from SA to L. They took full advantage of that situation too, by making the MC-21 mount adapter, which is available in Canon EF mount to L mount as well as the SA mount to L mount version. If I were them, I'd make a whole slew of mount dapters to put a really wide variety of lenses on the L mount, including one for Nikon F mount too . . . though there seem to be a few companies already making adapters for mounting various lenses to the L mount.

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Scottelly
Scottelly Forum Pro • Posts: 15,063
Re: Sigma SA Mount

rf-design wrote:

I bought 3/4 of my SA lenses used to significant less than in other mounts. Typical used SA lenses get rare after Sigma decide to left the mount. They state that all new DSLR, not DN, lenses get a SA mount version. But they only release DN versions since.

So my guess is that most SA owners stick with there lenses and the useability increase significant with the SA/E and SA/L mount converters. So you can use SA lenses in two other camera systems. For my own i bought some FF SA lenses only to use them only on a Sony A7 II. They where cheaper than in other mounts. The Sony A7 II AF works better with SA/E converter than the SDQ native with the same lens. The older Sony Nex-6 AF is similar to the SDQ.

I just got two like-new Art lenses in SA mount for a song. I was shocked, when they came and had no scratches or dings on them, and seem to be brand new. They came with zippered, padded cases that look new too, but they did not come in their boxes. Maybe they were sold as used, because the store could not find the boxes, or because the boxes were damaged. I don't mind. I don't plan to sell them. I'll be using them on a Sony A7r IV or an L mount camera some day. For now I use them on my SD Quattro H, and I love the image quality and the ability to shoot with auto-focus again. I plan to get at least one or two more used Art lenses over the next few months. Hopefully I will find similar good deals . . . though I really don't need any more SA-mount lenses. I recently bought an old, used 180mm EX macro in SA mount too, so now I have two macro primes and four zooms in SA mount that I use regularly, as well as a couple of Sigma SA mount zooms that I no longer use (they are for use on cameras with APS-C size sensors).

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Tom Schum
Tom Schum Forum Pro • Posts: 10,039
Re: Sigma SA Mount

Lynxo wrote:

Almost $400 for dedicated TTL flash and not even available?I’m sticking to manual flash, no choice anyway. I’m just scratching my head.

I had that flash.  It was excellent with the sd Quattro.  I sold it though, since camera with flash and Art lens ended up weighing a lot more than I wanted.

Also, not mentioned so far is that mirrorless still struggles to keep up with the nearly perfect autofocus found in the DSLR.  Sigma has not done well with this in their DSLRs but high end Canon and Nikon DSLR offerings are almost impossibly good, and mirrorless generally can't quite match them for speed and precision.

DSLR autofocus uses the mirror and a dedicated autofocus sensor.  When properly adjusted and calibrated, as it is in high end Canon and Nikon DSLRs, the lens is ready for the shot the very instant the shutter button is clicked.  With a mirrorless, the sensor does the autofocus, and this seems to be a stumbling block.

People who shoot sports, or birds in flight, or other fast action seem to prefer DSLRs, even at this late date.

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Jeffry7 Regular Member • Posts: 254
Re: Sigma SA Mount
1

Tom Schum wrote:

Lynxo wrote:

Almost $400 for dedicated TTL flash and not even available?I’m sticking to manual flash, no choice anyway. I’m just scratching my head.

I had that flash. It was excellent with the sd Quattro. I sold it though, since camera with flash and Art lens ended up weighing a lot more than I wanted.

Also, not mentioned so far is that mirrorless still struggles to keep up with the nearly perfect autofocus found in the DSLR. Sigma has not done well with this in their DSLRs but high end Canon and Nikon DSLR offerings are almost impossibly good, and mirrorless generally can't quite match them for speed and precision.

DSLR autofocus uses the mirror and a dedicated autofocus sensor. When properly adjusted and calibrated, as it is in high end Canon and Nikon DSLRs, the lens is ready for the shot the very instant the shutter button is clicked. With a mirrorless, the sensor does the autofocus, and this seems to be a stumbling block.

People who shoot sports, or birds in flight, or other fast action seem to prefer DSLRs, even at this late date.

For the the benefit of the OP, I was going to post something pedantic about auto focus.

But I think this does a good job explaining the state of the art in mirrorless auto focus and the evolution from DSLR cameras. It is more entertaining to.

https://petapixel.com/2018/10/16/camera-autofocus-systems-explained-phase-contrast-hybrid-dfd/

xpatUSA
xpatUSA Forum Pro • Posts: 17,981
Re: Sigma SA Mount

Jeffry7 wrote:

Tom Schum wrote:

Lynxo wrote:

Almost $400 for dedicated TTL flash and not even available?I’m sticking to manual flash, no choice anyway. I’m just scratching my head.

I had that flash. It was excellent with the sd Quattro. I sold it though, since camera with flash and Art lens ended up weighing a lot more than I wanted.

Also, not mentioned so far is that mirrorless still struggles to keep up with the nearly perfect autofocus found in the DSLR. Sigma has not done well with this in their DSLRs but high end Canon and Nikon DSLR offerings are almost impossibly good, and mirrorless generally can't quite match them for speed and precision.

DSLR autofocus uses the mirror and a dedicated autofocus sensor. When properly adjusted and calibrated, as it is in high end Canon and Nikon DSLRs, the lens is ready for the shot the very instant the shutter button is clicked. With a mirrorless, the sensor does the autofocus, and this seems to be a stumbling block.

People who shoot sports, or birds in flight, or other fast action seem to prefer DSLRs, even at this late date.

For the the benefit of the OP, I was going to post something pedantic about auto focus.

But I think this does a good job explaining the state of the art in mirrorless auto focus and the evolution from DSLR cameras. It is more entertaining to.

https://petapixel.com/2018/10/16/camera-autofocus-systems-explained-phase-contrast-hybrid-dfd/

Thanks for the link. My G9 camera has DFD although I haven't found the need to use it yet, being more fond of magnified manual with focus peaking.

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DMillier Forum Pro • Posts: 21,688
Re: Sigma SA Mount
1

xpatUSA wrote:

Jeffry7 wrote:

Tom Schum wrote:

Lynxo wrote:

Almost $400 for dedicated TTL flash and not even available?I’m sticking to manual flash, no choice anyway. I’m just scratching my head.

I had that flash. It was excellent with the sd Quattro. I sold it though, since camera with flash and Art lens ended up weighing a lot more than I wanted.

Also, not mentioned so far is that mirrorless still struggles to keep up with the nearly perfect autofocus found in the DSLR. Sigma has not done well with this in their DSLRs but high end Canon and Nikon DSLR offerings are almost impossibly good, and mirrorless generally can't quite match them for speed and precision.

DSLR autofocus uses the mirror and a dedicated autofocus sensor. When properly adjusted and calibrated, as it is in high end Canon and Nikon DSLRs, the lens is ready for the shot the very instant the shutter button is clicked. With a mirrorless, the sensor does the autofocus, and this seems to be a stumbling block.

People who shoot sports, or birds in flight, or other fast action seem to prefer DSLRs, even at this late date.

For the the benefit of the OP, I was going to post something pedantic about auto focus.

But I think this does a good job explaining the state of the art in mirrorless auto focus and the evolution from DSLR cameras. It is more entertaining to.

https://petapixel.com/2018/10/16/camera-autofocus-systems-explained-phase-contrast-hybrid-dfd/

Thanks for the link. My G9 camera has DFD although I haven't found the need to use it yet, being more fond of magnified manual with focus peaking.

I'm so behind the times, that with AF I use only 1 fixed centre AF point in AF-S mode.  I have never bothered to work out what all the other sophisticated and complicated modes are and what you use them for. 99% of camera debates now seem to be about whether other brands have caught up with Sony's eye detect or whatever it's called, but for me it plain old fashioned centre point only!

On manual focus, I absolutely love the dual side-by-side viewfinders in the X-T1. I use the big VF for composing and the little VF for manual focusing. I have it set to 3x mag and peaking. Works a treat and because it is always on, there is no need to mess about with pressing buttons to switch focusing aids on and off. The Fuji dual VF is the only practical MF aid for mirrorless that is completely seamless IMO.  Every camera should have this option.

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