It’s been lots of buz lately about the much anticipated Sigma DP1 – the every mans Leica that finally is ready to ship (or very close to) and I, as maybe the most happy guy on earth right now I HAVE ONE! :D And of course I will have to write a little something about it – from an SD14 users point of view.
Build quality is very good, front and back made out of metal and nothing is flimsy. Very sturdy feeling. Should be at almost 300g. Almost too much when it comes to the MSAP wheel. The other wheel is the one for manual focusing and it’s very easy to turn without any clicks – easy to fast manual focus and this feature was one that I was afraid of being bad – is very good and very very useful. I use it 100% of the time. (at least at day one. ;)
Lens is superb. Bokeh is wonderful. F4 works very very well much thanks to the great sharpness wide open. Remember that common lenses such as 10-20 and 12-24 is the same or slower and much bigger! Do I dare say that this little DP1 16.5mm lens is sharper? I think it is. More or less all my shots this first cloudy day has been taken at F4.
Speed was another thing that scared me some. In order to make it less painful I bought the fastest SD card I could find, the SD Extreme III from SanDisk and I have no idea if it helps but I have yet to miss a shot because of save times. It’s a bit faster than my SD14 I think but with smaller buffer. About half I guess. There is two ways of taking shots. One in continues mode – about three shots in less than a second (RAW mode) – and a “normal” shot mode that will give you about two-three seconds between shots. – this is no SLR and will not be used as one either.
Flipping thru images, zoom in to see 100% etc is very fast and interestingly enough much faster and better implemented than in my SD14. Feels instant.
The external flash is extremely cool looking. I had it to one of my night club sessions and people wowed it many times. I had to lend my little camera to many people. Never did that with my SD14. :) – one good thing here is that you can turn the focus wheel to 1m and leave it there. It’s pretty easy to learn how far away 1m is and keep it that way. :)
LCD is 230 000 dots and OK. It’s not the brightest in the business but works great. Better than the LCD on my SD14. Colors looks accurate and gives me a good feeling for sharpness etc. It’s also possible to see histogram etc as you would expect. In dark enviroment the “live” flow becomes very grainy – look cool but isn’t very useful to judge sharpness from at those times knowing how far one meter is, is good. :)
Battery life is yet to be known. First impression is that it’s similar to my SD14, maybe a bit less.
Final word from day one – I like it – it’s going to be where I go. :D and now some images. Experimental ISO3200 and others.