What is holding Sigma back with the new Merril(s)?

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D Cox Forum Pro • Posts: 29,591
Re: What is holding Sigma back with the new Merril(s)?
1

danski0224 wrote:

Canon has quietly developed a "stacked" sensor for the upcoming R3. No one saw that coming.

Rumored megapixel count is over 50.

The so-called professional cameras seem to be bandwidth limited. The photos need to be processed and uploaded ASAP, which is why Canon isn't putting a 50mp sensor into the 1DXIII...

There might be a time when they do go beyond 20mp or so for the 1D series.

I'm definitely interested in whatever is the successor to the 5DSR/1DsIII. And that new 100mm macro with the defocus control.

If/when Sigma releases a 20mp FFF, I have no doubt that it will be comparable to a minimum 60mp Bayer sensor "full frame" camera.

The usual view is that a Foveon is roughly equal in resolution to a Bayer with 1.7 or 1.8 times as many pixels. Certainly not 3x.

To equal the fp L, a new Foveon would need at least 30 Megapixels. That would be, twice the area of the Merrill, with the same pixel pitch as the Merrill.

Don Cox

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D Cox Forum Pro • Posts: 29,591
Re: What is holding Sigma back with the new Merril(s)?

Lukacs85 wrote:

If you have an AA filter the camera lacks of sharpnes. The moiré is an existent problem, in practice of course not so common

I can say only the 61MP bayer sensor has no practical moiré problem at this scene. You can downsize the image to get crispy pixel level image as SDQH, without color artifacts.

My A7III suffering moiré at distant tree branches, house roofs, fences also DP2Q has no such problem. Also DP2Q has sharper edges, 24MP Bayer has still a bit haloing.

Lots of colours on the A7R4 example, on the right hand side of the sample. The GFX 505 is even worse.

The A7III seems to be recording only alternate horizontal lines. Does it have an AA filter ?

We need to see what the fp L makes of this part of the test scene.

Don Cox

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xpatUSA
xpatUSA Forum Pro • Posts: 20,104
Re: What is holding Sigma back with the new Merrill(s)?

mike earussi wrote:

xpatUSA wrote:

mike earussi wrote:

Scottelly wrote:

xpatUSA wrote:

D Cox wrote:

A 20 Mpix Foveon is not enough for 24x36mm.

76 lp/mm at the sensor would be good enough for any lens except an Otus mebbe.

Huh? If that was the case, then we wouldn't see any more detail in our photos when we step up from the SD9, SD10, SD14, or SD15 to the SD1 Merrill, but as you know Ted, even when using a zoom lens, like the 17-50mm f2.8 EX OS there is a significant amount of extra detail in those Merrill images.

. . . or were you just joking?

The Merrill's max resolution is 100LPM which can easily be reached using Sigma's best glass ...

Indeed, as I just posted, their 65mm DG DN can do over 160LPM at MTF50 which "beats" the Merrill quite handily.

That's the ideal, always have glass better than your sensor.

Excellent, which is why I rather like my SD9, any old lens will do ...

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Lukacs85 Regular Member • Posts: 364
Re: What is holding Sigma back with the new Merril(s)?
1

Here is the example of distant branches moiré with 24MP Bayer:

And the Quattro (not the same scene):

Upscaled 500x500 crop from both camera, you can see the annoying bayer color matrix artifacts everywhere.

After Foveon for landscapes I definetly recommend at least 42MP Bayer, 60MP is better.

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mike earussi Veteran Member • Posts: 9,155
Re: What is holding Sigma back with the new Merril(s)?

D Cox wrote:

The usual view is that a Foveon is roughly equal in resolution to a Bayer with 1.7 or 1.8 times as many pixels. Certainly not 3x.

To equal the fp L, a new Foveon would need at least 30 Megapixels. That would be, twice the area of the Merrill, with the same pixel pitch as the Merrill.

Don Cox

1.7x without AA filter and 2x+ with AA filter.

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Tom Schum
Tom Schum Forum Pro • Posts: 11,858
Re: What is holding Sigma back with the new Merril(s)?
1

D Cox wrote:

The sdQH, and I presume also the other Quattro cameras, do not have video. I haven't missed it.

Greater dynamic range, with which comes usable results at higher ISO settings, would be a welcome improvement. It's one of the best things about the fp. I am sure Sigma are working hard on it.

Don Cox

My sd Quattro has to have some sort of functional video to support the EVF and rear LCD.  The fact that video recording is not done seems to me to not matter.  The basic video functionality is there in the Quattro sensors.

Any full frame Foveon would need video to work in a mirrorless body, in my opinion.

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Tom Schum Forum Pro • Posts: 11,858
Re: What is holding Sigma back with the new Merril(s)?
1

xpatUSA wrote:

mujana wrote:

fusoexplorer wrote:

I think many have come to expect that modern cameras have high ISO abilities and video. If Sigma is concerned about the foveon sensor not working too well with high ISO above 400 in color and 800 in B&W why don’t they just eliminate the ability to go above 800? And why don’t they just eliminate video altogether?

Agree...being more of a "specialist" camera sets Sigma Foveon apart anyway. Might as well emphasize this and show the best of the best IQ. Only IQ, nothing else.

IQ as in:

?

If this were true, would a Sigma mirrorless camera exist?  My guess is no, it wouldn't.  Basically, putting image quality first would eliminate a lot of secondary features such as support for phase focusing, features that depend on video access rates.

We would have a full frame DSLR design without live-view.  Nobody wants them anymore, but this design supports an "Image Quality First" design ethic and the other designs don't.

On the other hand, getting the image out of the sensor in a reasonable amount of time is also nice, and this might go hand-in-hand with video too.

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Tom Schum Forum Pro • Posts: 11,858
Re: What is holding Sigma back with the new Merril(s)?

danski0224 wrote:

If/when Sigma releases a 20mp FFF, I have no doubt that it will be comparable to a minimum 60mp Bayer sensor "full frame" camera.

But Sigma already has the fp L, which has a 60mp sensor.  If the goal is photographic excellence, my guess is Foveon will be a path left uncompleted, at least for the foreseeable future.

Being old, it looks like the best way for me to get Merrill quality now is to buy myself a fp L.

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Re: What is holding Sigma back with the new Merrill(s)?

xpatUSA wrote:

mike earussi wrote:

The Merrill's max resolution is 100LPM which can easily be reached using Sigma's best glass ...

Indeed, as I just posted, their 65mm DG DN can do over 160LPM at MTF50 which "beats" the Merrill quite handily.

On the fp L, with its anti-alias filtering, I wonder what the usable resolution is.

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Tom Schum
Tom Schum Forum Pro • Posts: 11,858
Re: What is holding Sigma back with the new Merril(s)?
1

mike earussi wrote:

xpatUSA wrote:

D Cox wrote:

A 20 Mpix Foveon is not enough for 24x36mm.

76 lp/mm at the sensor would be good enough for any lens except an Otus mebbe.

I've printed 24x36 images from my 14.7mp Merrill that look excellent when using Topaz Gigapixel AI (in Architectural mode) to enlarge the file. BTW, Foveon files uprez very well, much better than Bayer.

It would be interesting to find out if Topaz Gigapixel would do well with a fp L file that has been downsized to 1/4 original pixels.  The quality of these pixels ought to equal that of the Merrill, pixel for pixel, should it not?

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xpatUSA
xpatUSA Forum Pro • Posts: 20,104
Re: What is holding Sigma back with the new Merril(s)?
1

Tom Schum wrote:

D Cox wrote:

The sdQH, and I presume also the other Quattro cameras, do not have video. I haven't missed it.

Greater dynamic range, with which comes usable results at higher ISO settings, would be a welcome improvement. It's one of the best things about the fp. I am sure Sigma are working hard on it.

Don Cox

My sd Quattro has to have some sort of functional video to support the EVF and rear LCD. The fact that video recording is not done seems to me to not matter. The basic video functionality is there in the Quattro sensors.

Any full frame Foveon would need video to work in a mirrorless body, in my opinion.

Barely relevant is this paper by Hubel:

http://kronometric.org/phot/sensor/fov/CIC13_Hubel_Final.pdf

Of particular interest is Fig. 3 (B) showing the use of the optimal green layer for video luminance as opposed to the Quattro's use of the top layer.

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Tom Schum
Tom Schum Forum Pro • Posts: 11,858
Re: What is holding Sigma back with the new Merril(s)?
2

Lukacs85 wrote:

After Foveon for landscapes I definetly recommend at least 42MP Bayer, 60MP is better.

This is why the fp L is starting to look real good to me for stills, because I can downsize it to 1/4 original pixels and still have a 15mp resultant image.

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xpatUSA
xpatUSA Forum Pro • Posts: 20,104
Re: What is holding Sigma back with the new Merril(s)?

Tom Schum wrote:

xpatUSA wrote:

mujana wrote:

fusoexplorer wrote:

I think many have come to expect that modern cameras have high ISO abilities and video. If Sigma is concerned about the foveon sensor not working too well with high ISO above 400 in color and 800 in B&W why don’t they just eliminate the ability to go above 800? And why don’t they just eliminate video altogether?

Agree...being more of a "specialist" camera sets Sigma Foveon apart anyway. Might as well emphasize this and show the best of the best IQ. Only IQ, nothing else.

IQ as in:

?

If this were true, would a Sigma mirrorless camera exist? My guess is no, it wouldn't.

Not sure what you're disagreeing with, Tom, nor with whom. If me, I was trying to clarify "IQ", nothing more ...

Basically, putting image quality first would eliminate a lot of secondary features such as support for phase focusing, features that depend on video access rates.

We would have a full frame DSLR design without live-view. Nobody wants them anymore, but this design supports an "Image Quality First" design ethic and the other designs don't.

On the other hand, getting the image out of the sensor in a reasonable amount of time is also nice, and this might go hand-in-hand with video too.

Hmmm ...

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xpatUSA
xpatUSA Forum Pro • Posts: 20,104
Re: What is holding Sigma back with the new Merrill(s)?
1

Tom Schum wrote:

xpatUSA wrote:

mike earussi wrote:

The Merrill's max resolution is 100LPM which can easily be reached using Sigma's best glass ...

Indeed, as I just posted, their 65mm DG DN can do over 160LPM at MTF50 which "beats" the Merrill quite handily.

On the fp L, with its anti-alias filtering, I wonder what the usable resolution is.

Numbers, numbers to the rescue ...

The sensor has 6720 pixels in 36mm, I think you said. So that's 187 px/mm or 93 lp/mm.

Taking "usable" to mean visible, objects are distinguishable down to 9% MTF below which point they are not.

So the question would be:

In a MTF curve, at what lp/mm would the MTF become 9%?

Although the question normally asked is " what lp/mm give an MTF of 50%?" ...

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mike earussi Veteran Member • Posts: 9,155
Re: What is holding Sigma back with the new Merril(s)?
4

Tom Schum wrote:

danski0224 wrote:

If/when Sigma releases a 20mp FFF, I have no doubt that it will be comparable to a minimum 60mp Bayer sensor "full frame" camera.

But Sigma already has the fp L, which has a 60mp sensor. If the goal is photographic excellence, my guess is Foveon will be a path left uncompleted, at least for the foreseeable future.

Being old, it looks like the best way for me to get Merrill quality now is to buy myself a fp L.

No matter what Bayer camera you use with x amount of mps you'll never be able to duplicate the 3D look of the Foveon. It isn't about MP it's about the ability of the Foveon to separate subtle adjacent tones the Bayer misses because of it's need to average adjacent pixels to obtain color information.

Pixel Shift can come close but even then your color sensitivity is limited by the fixed color filters Bayer is forced to use.

I compared my Sigma SD15 to my Sony NEX 7 and even though the Sony had a higher resolution it missed the subtle adjacent tonal differences that the SD15 was able to pick up, and it actually made a better looking print because of it.

The Foveon sensor has a lot of limitations compared to Bayer especially in high iso/low noise and better DR, but nothing I've seen so far can beat the Foveon in picking up more color variations. I wish there was something that could because Sigma may never be able to solve the technological problems in making a FFF, at least at a realistic cost.

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mike earussi Veteran Member • Posts: 9,155
Re: What is holding Sigma back with the new Merril(s)?
2

Tom Schum wrote:

mike earussi wrote:

xpatUSA wrote:

D Cox wrote:

A 20 Mpix Foveon is not enough for 24x36mm.

76 lp/mm at the sensor would be good enough for any lens except an Otus mebbe.

I've printed 24x36 images from my 14.7mp Merrill that look excellent when using Topaz Gigapixel AI (in Architectural mode) to enlarge the file. BTW, Foveon files uprez very well, much better than Bayer.

It would be interesting to find out if Topaz Gigapixel would do well with a fp L file that has been downsized to 1/4 original pixels. The quality of these pixels ought to equal that of the Merrill, pixel for pixel, should it not?

No, a Merrill sensor will still look different because of how it determines color. You'll have better DR with the Bayer but poorer color variations.

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mujana Veteran Member • Posts: 7,521
Re: What is holding Sigma back with the new Merril(s)?

mike earussi wrote:

Tom Schum wrote:

danski0224 wrote:

If/when Sigma releases a 20mp FFF, I have no doubt that it will be comparable to a minimum 60mp Bayer sensor "full frame" camera.

But Sigma already has the fp L, which has a 60mp sensor. If the goal is photographic excellence, my guess is Foveon will be a path left uncompleted, at least for the foreseeable future.

Being old, it looks like the best way for me to get Merrill quality now is to buy myself a fp L.

No matter what Bayer camera you use with x amount of mps you'll never be able to duplicate the 3D look of the Foveon. It isn't about MP it's about the ability of the Foveon to separate subtle adjacent tones the Bayer misses because of it's need to average adjacent pixels to obtain color information.

Pixel Shift can come close but even then your color sensitivity is limited by the fixed color filters Bayer is forced to use.

I compared my Sigma SD15 to my Sony NEX 7 and even though the Sony had a higher resolution it missed the subtle adjacent tonal differences that the SD15 was able to pick up, and it actually made a better looking print because of it.

The Foveon sensor has a lot of limitations compared to Bayer especially in high iso/low noise and better DR, but nothing I've seen so far can beat the Foveon in picking up more color variations. I wish there was something that could because Sigma may never be able to solve the technological problems in making a FFF, at least at a realistic cost.

Agree.

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Scottelly
Scottelly Forum Pro • Posts: 16,332
Re: What is holding Sigma back with the new Merrill(s)?

xpatUSA wrote:

Scottelly wrote:

xpatUSA wrote:

D Cox wrote:

A 20 Mpix Foveon is not enough for 24x36mm.

76 lp/mm at the sensor would be good enough for any lens except an Otus mebbe.

Huh? If that was the case, then we wouldn't see any more detail in our photos when we step up from the SD9, SD10, SD14, or SD15 to the SD1 Merrill, but as you know Ted, even when using a zoom lens, like the 17-50mm f2.8 EX OS there is a significant amount of extra detail in those Merrill images.

Huh? How do you measure "detail", Scott?

. . . or were you just joking?

Nope. I realize that numbers other than MP are anathema to your good self - but may I offer, apart from the Otus, the Sigma 65mm DG DN which goes just over 80 lp/mm at f/2.8 and f/4 in the center, which a 20MP full-frame Foveon would almost match and would certainly beat at all other settings or away from the center of the lens.

See for yourself :

https://www.lenstip.com/600.4-Lens_review-Sigma_C_65_mm_f_2_DG_DN_Image_resolution.html

I think at this point you're just being impractical, and shutting your eyes to the obvious Ted.

DP1

dp2 Quattro

Those are crops from these images at Imaging-Resource:

https://www.imaging-resource.com/PRODS/DP1/FULLRES/DP1hSLI100.JPG

https://www.imaging-resource.com/PRODS/sigma-dp2-quattro/FULLRES/DP2QhSLI0100H.JPG

Much more detail is visible in the image from the Quattro, as you and anyone else can see.

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Scottelly
Scottelly Forum Pro • Posts: 16,332
Re: What is holding Sigma back with the new Merril(s)?

Tom Schum wrote:

xpatUSA wrote:

mujana wrote:

fusoexplorer wrote:

I think many have come to expect that modern cameras have high ISO abilities and video. If Sigma is concerned about the foveon sensor not working too well with high ISO above 400 in color and 800 in B&W why don’t they just eliminate the ability to go above 800? And why don’t they just eliminate video altogether?

Agree...being more of a "specialist" camera sets Sigma Foveon apart anyway. Might as well emphasize this and show the best of the best IQ. Only IQ, nothing else.

IQ as in:

?

If this were true, would a Sigma mirrorless camera exist? My guess is no, it wouldn't. Basically, putting image quality first would eliminate a lot of secondary features such as support for phase focusing, features that depend on video access rates.

If you don't get focus right, then you get a blurred image. How is that going to produce good image quality?

We would have a full frame DSLR design without live-view.

Why?

Nobody wants them anymore, but this design supports an "Image Quality First" design ethic and the other designs don't.

Wrong. Image quality comes from focusing perfectly, and we all know that using auto-focus with a DSLR design doesn't do that reliably. Using live-view to focus manually from a tripod is the best way (for static subjects), whether using a DSLR or a mirrorless camera.

On the other hand, getting the image out of the sensor in a reasonable amount of time is also nice, and this might go hand-in-hand with video too.

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pranza
pranza New Member • Posts: 6
Re: What is holding Sigma back with the new Merril(s)?

Anyway the Merrills both DP & SD have proved themselves as excellent cameras and I see no need for posts from relatively new posters denigrating them. They have been used by many of us to make amazing pictures over the last nine years and are still doing so.

that's exactly what i say (finally having gotten the SD1 this year) - if anything _needs_ upgrade, is the photographer, full frame merril won't be a magic bullet.
again, those who don't see foveon issues with color in certain circumstances - they certainly need some awareness, not larger frames

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