Questions and answers

Here you can add any question about anything related to photography or whatever you think I can answer that doesn’t fit into a certain article.

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106 Responses to Questions and answers

  1. Soe Lin Post says:

    Hi Carl,

    I figure you’re probably the best person to answer a question I have regarding SD15/SD1.

    I just want to know if SD15 would be “responsive” enough to be used for pro-use. Does it focus well and fast? I don’t normally shoot over ISO 1600. Are SD15 images good/usable @ ISO 1600?

    I am not a pro photographer, but sometimes I help out a pro shooting weddings, events, family and infant photos. I haven’t shot in a studio environment but perhaps in the future, I may.

    I currently shoot with Canon 5D Mk2 and various “L” lenses. They get the job done very well and I rely on them for pro uses and in low-light situation; however, while the results I get are good, I just don’t get the same excitement and satisfaction as the results I get from my DP2s [when I can nail the focus.] I can see the difference in the DP2s images processed with SPP4.1.

    That said, I am seriously considering switching to Sigma. I’m just doing some research to convince myself to switch over from Canon to Sigma.

    Thanks in advance for your help.

    Soe Lin Post

  2. Hi Soe Lin,

    SD15 is responsive enough for sure, there is few occasions where you will feel it’s “slow” – Sports might be an issue and stuff similar to that – but for a wedding I don’t think responsiveness is part of the down side. But, ISO 1600 is a huge No No if you ask me. If you’re planning on doing monochrome work, then 1600 and even 3200 is not a problem but for color I think ISO800, at least for me, is top.

    When I need higher ISO then I use cameras such as 5D mark 2 or some Nikon D3/D300. Or if I can, I’ll us my Sigmas and flash.

    You seem to have a pretty nice setup already with 5D Mark 2 and L lenses – if higher ISO is important at times, then perhaps you could keep your camera and sell of a few lenses – get a Sigma SD14 and play with it until SD1 is out as the SD14 is very cheap and pretty easy to find. SD14 is a great camera but might need a little more light than say SD15. SD15 is much more responsive though because of the larger buffer and it also have colors that are easier to work with. (more similar to what you already have on the Dp2)

    The Sigma SD1 on the other hand we know very little about – what we know is that Sigma is working hard to give user a perfectly usable ISO1600 – body is weather resistent – grip is awesome and we also know that responsiveness of focusing is better and more precise.

    The huge improvement is of course the 15.4MP x3 sensor which will make life so much easier AND tougher. (Large files).

  3. Montano St.Jules says:

    Hey Carl,
    I am Montano St.Jules, a fine art photographer in Toronto Canada. I have been following your site for a while now and must thank u for pointing me to the SD14. I have been a B&W film specialist for many years and was greatly saddened by what digital cameras were giving. All that has changed because I consider the Sigma files the only digital medium capable of duplicating what film looks like. My passion for B&W photography has returned because of these fine cameras. I have worked with the most expensive digital backs out there and none compare…period!. Thank you Carl for staying with SIGMA and showing the world the best digital technology out there.

  4. anfat says:

    Hi Carl, I’m new to Sigma gear and I would like to know which, in your experience, are the best Sigma Lenses for Sigma DSLR. Thanks in advance

  5. Anfat,

    I love some lenses more than others – 70mm 2.8, 30mm 1.4.. 10-20mm, 70-200mm II 2.8 (none macro version) and the final one. 120-300mm 2.8. Another “favorite” is one that I don’t own – 150mm 2.8 Macro and 14mm 2.8. But those I only tried so far.

    But the new 50mm 1.4 is fantastic as well but I just didn’t use it as much as the others.

    new up and comer is the 18-50 2.8 Macro, which I think works really well as a daily on lens. Works well in most situations.

    • Dominick says:

      Have you try the 24-70mm F2.8 EX DG Macro ?
      If yes, how sharp is-it ?

      I just bought a SD-9 to experiment with the colors… but I don’t have any lens yet, so I’m wondering witch lens would produces the best images with the SD-9. (Hopefully I’ll be abble to use the same lens on the SD-1) :)


  6. MONTANO, thanks for your post!

  7. Fabrizio says:


    i love the shots taken with the foveon, and i’ve buyed a used DP2 , but there’s a problem, the picture present a vertical line to the left…..
    I shot only raw.
    Is the sensor broken?

    Thank’you and compliments for your web site


  8. Mrmut says:

    Hello Carl,

    you might be interested in this:
    A guy made a software to correct for color casts on DP series cameras. Maybe post it on your web?

  9. Fabrazio, I’m afraid so – that doesn’t look good at all. New or used? Return it asap so that you can continue to capture beauty like the seascape without lines.. :)

  10. ct529 says:

    Hi Carl,

    I am mesmerised by you photographs, compliments and thanks! I particularly love the ones the group of people swimming …. it is a perfect shot.

    My wife and I use a DLUX4 (that has “disappeared” during a recent trip abroad). We are very happy with it, but I was thinking of adding an SLR for macro and wildlife.

    The new SD1 look very interesting.

    What do you about any of the two for macro (flowers, insects, amphibians, small mammals and so on) and for wildlife (birds and larger mammals)? All these creatures have a tendency to move a lot …. :-D. How responsive / precise is the autofocus? What Sigma camera would you suggest for this use?

    Also what sigma lens setup would you use? The APO 150/2.8 seems great …. but what about long lenses?

    Thanks in advance.

  11. ct529 says:

    Sorry, Carl the previous post contains numerous errors, due to my editor not working properly. Could you please allow me to fix them?

    The sentence “What do you about any of the two” should read “What do you think about it”. I apologise, I do not know what happened.

  12. Filipe Morais says:

    Hey Carl,

    i was watching this movie about Coachella – – and everything looks like small toys, is there and filter ond and special way to develop photos so they look like this?

    Cheers from Porgutal!

    PS: i did get the DP1 and later the sd14 :)

  13. Filipe Morais says:

    Filipe Morais: Hey Carl,
    i was watching this movie about Coachella – – and everything looks like small toys, is there and filter ond and special way to develop photos so they look like this?Cheers from Porgutal!PS: i did get the DP1 and later the sd14 :)

    I guess this are similar to HDR photos, no?

    • Hi Filipe! it’s likely recorded using a canon and a so called TS lens, a tilt and shift able lens. Sigma don’t offer anything like it to date but I really hope they will when sd1 comes out. The video you linked to is also probably done using lots of photos like one every second or so and then combined as a movie. You have lots of nice abilities with those new canons. :)

      There is another option for us sigma users and thats going for the lens baby version – there is one that is made for the pentax mount which will work on our dear sigmas. :) didn’t try it though.

  14. Mrmut says:

    Is there a possibility that you post a SD15 RAW pack?
    That would be great for those who are thinking about integrating SD15s in their workflow.

  15. X3dwarf says:

    Hello Carl and all you commenters. I want to congratulate you for your great blog I’ve been exploring for the last week.
    One reason: I will soon be the proud owner of a DP1s -as DSLR I have the last Konica-Minolta 5D before Sony took over ;(

    I will be exploring the whole Foveon thing and am currently wondering what SDHC card to get. Either way it’ll be a Sandisk (Transcend tend to have vastly lower write speeds than advertised) 20MB/s 4GB or 30MB/s 8GB. Do you guys think that would make any difference at all? Can the DP1s even write faster than 20MB/s? What cards do you use? Thanks in advance!

  16. Mrmut, Short answer. Yes. I’ll try as soon as I feel I have the “stuff” for you.

  17. I was at Carl’s wedding…everyone was very nice…this is a photo of the day after.
    I hope everyone will like it.
    You can google me if you like my photos…the best are on my book in two languages.
    There are other photos but I’m quite slow also because I don’t own a SD-15 and probably I will buy a SD-1 and a Dp2.Bye to everyone !


  18. Alejandro says:

    Hi Carl)
    I use a camera sigma sd 14
    It does excellent pictures, but all the same I not as can’t achieve such dynamic range in photos as from you. Can to me as that it is necessary to adjust the chamber?
    Prompt as you process them on by SPP 4.2?

  19. Alejandro, your images (two of the same?!) shows that you’re using ISO50 – ISO50 is compressing the dynamic range some and will cut highlights earlier than ISO100 and perhaps that’s why you feel you have less DR? ISO50 is in reality a overexposed ISO100 shot brought back.

    Also, on my screen you have too much blue, and you would likely get a nicer feel if you went to warmer WB. Not too much, but a little.

  20. Anonymous says:

    Thanks Carl!)

  21. wesleywongphoto says:

    Hi Carl,
    First of all thanks for you very informative and very well down website. Not only is the information very clear and your comments very informative but the images are excellent examples as well.
    I am a professional photographer living now in Beijing, China. I have have used some Sigma lenses in the past with very good results but in the back of my mind always have that nagging feeling that I should be using (I currently shoot with a Canon 50D but have used Canon 30D in the past……) Canon’s professional “red” lines series which are at times ridiculously expensive. As a newspaper photographer in the past I will say that they are very good lenses but since they were always provided by the newspaper never had to worry about cost. Now that I have been on my own freelancing, of course this is an issue. One of the things that concerns me is durability (in terms of construction) and the ability of the lenses to keep out “dust”. That has been a major problem for me living here in China. Dust and dirt as you probably know all to well is a fact of life here in China. I am particularly interested in the new Sigma 17-50 and 17-70 OS lenses. I am looking for a good walk around lens and like these focal lengths and that fact that they have image stabilization. I currently am using a Canon 18-200 f3.5 – 4.5 and love the distances this lens covers but it’s just to slow for me in low light even with the image stabilization.
    Anyways I would like to know your recommendation or opinions of these Sigma lens and if you think they stack up to the Canon lenses. I have read other reviews but because of the excellent quality of your images feel your opinions and comments would be more valuable to me.

    Thanks, Wesley Wong
    you can see some examples of my work at

  22. Hi Wesley!

    To be honest with you I would try to get a full frame lens – such as the 24-70mm F2.8 IF EX DG HSM but perhaps that would be a bit too pricey for you – not sure where your limits are. Being a Canon user I’m pretty sure that you will change system a bit more often than me and that a FF camera might end up in your bag – and then the 17-50 (70) will be less useful.

    The 17-50 is cheaper and has OS – but it’s also a APS-c type lens. But, If I were you and I had to choose between the 17-70 and 17-50, then the 17-50 because of the more predictable f2.8 aperture. Both are really sharp and has nice bokeh rendition.

    OS is nice and helps a lot. I have not yet used it enough to grade it – but some of the shots so far looks absolutely fantastic.

    Here’s two examples that I’ve uploaded for you. Click for bigger. Exif in each close up.
    Sigma 17-50 OS, taken using the SD15.

    Hope this helps a bit. No sharpness or anything added to these shots except for my copyright tag.

  23. Pingback: Sigma Dp1x photos! Take a closer look! | Carl Rytterfalk Fotografi

  24. Filipe Morais says:

    Hey Carl, can you help me find a tilt and shift lenses for sigma sd14?
    thanks :)

  25. Kerstin says:

    Heeej bror!
    Jag går in på din hemsida rätt ofta, och nu går jag in för jag väntar och längtar efter att få se en massa härliga bilder på den VACKRA frostiga vintern vi har fått… när kommer dom bilderna?? :) (19 -!)

  26. Michael says:

    Hi Carl,

    Great site, and simply amazing images (love the vids too). I am tempted by a DP-1X.

    I have been tossing up between a GF1, GF2, Leica X1 for some time, not entirely happy with any of these offerings, when i found your site. The Sigma’s seem to be an excellent product, do you have any advise regarding these as a camera. My primary use will be travel, street, and general quick work. Indeed, I am tempted to grab a DP-1X and A DP-2S just to cover the two lengths. I think this is a better solution at the minute than one body and lenses, as I still use a venerable old 35mm Minolta which produces lovely results with top grade film.

    Dont suppose I can hang out long enough for a DP with the SD1 sensor in it.


  27. Hi Michael! Thanks for you kind comment on my site – :) Always welcome. The DP1x and DP2s is really ready to be used and will serve you nicely and produce stunning images more or less directly. They’re both second or third generations cameras and I’m using both mine ALOT. Perhaps more than my SDxx.. It’s also a good idea to get used to the raw processing and thinking of three layered photography before getting the SD1. :)

  28. Ryan says:

    Hello Carl,

    I am currently on the edge of taking the DP1x plunge! However, each time I go to hit the “purchase” button I get worried that because of the mega-pixel count in the foveon sensor I will loose the ability to make larger prints.

    Do you – or anyone else, know how large a person can print from a DP1x file. (I am aware, camera settings and post processing does have an effect.)


  29. Roman Bailon says:

    Hello Carl,

    Thanks for your great website and love for sigmas and photography.
    I am an amateur in Madrid, and bought my sd14 in 2008 (after my first digital camera, a Kodak DX7630, great small bridge-camera), to finally have a gadget-free, purist camera.

    My questions are:

    I have some trouble with a tendency to green in interiors, specially with eco-bulbs at home. I kind of fix it by custom white but pointing to a green colored card or object (not white). Any other option before doing SPP?

    How do you store so many digital photos? by year?, by subject? Im going crazy.

    After two years I just love the SD14, the camera is scene-free, no-nonsense, and pictures are superb.

    Thanks again.

  30. Ryan,

    Printing has always been one of the stranger parts with any Sigma.. Some pictures looks amazing and should be printed at at least A2 to be truly enjoyed (I’ve printed double a0 for exhibition from an SD9 original – that’s 3.4MP) – some shots looks better small.

    The DP-series has really amazing lenses – the DP1x is no exception!

    What size do you aim for? Perhaps I could film something at that perticular size and that way five you a glimse of the quality.

  31. Anonymous says:

    Hi Roman!

    The three layered design makes some situations tougher than others – if the light quality (low RA number) is bad then issues will come up. If you like, you can send me one of your green images and I’ll have a look at what can be done and give you a public statement and perhaps even show your shot here if you allow me to. There is always someone else with the same questions! :)

    My can handle one RAW at a time.

  32. Ryan says:

    Thanks for the reply. Being able to print A2 from the DP1x sounds pretty good. I sometime have to print 24×36 or 30×40… a film would be great of something around those sizes.

    New question, I will be taking a photo trip to Arizona and Utah for National Park tours. I was thinking about purchasing one to take for landscape photos. What do you think about that? I thought the qualities of the DP1(s,x) might work well there.

    You’re great – Thanks!

  33. Ryan, it’s really up to what type of landscape photography you want to do. The Dp1 series with it’s 16,6mm lens which becomes 28mm if you compare to full frame, and is among many regarded as a must have. It’s lens is really a nice and with it’s bracketing function you can create stunning photography. Be sure to bring some extra, fully charged batteries..

  34. Andrew says:

    Dear Carl,

    I would like to echo the positive feedback of the other visitors to your site. In fact your website has convinced me to ‘go Sigma’ (SD14) for a forthcoming series of portraits.

    Can I ask two technical questions about the SD14, flashes and polarizing filters? I am rather a novice with flashes.

    As I need to travel around Italy to take a series of indoor portraits and want to have as much creative liberty, but not to much access baggage, I was considering using three sigma ef-530 dg supers.

    Would you recommend an alternative set up?

    In your opinion, does a polarizing filter have any role to play in the studio in terms of enhancing colours?

    Best regards and thanks again.


  35. Hi Andrew!

    I’ll grab your questions one at a time.

    I think the 530 DG Super is a really good flash. You might want some good light modifiers as well, but I guess you though about it already. :) I use cheap radio triggers from China and I suggest you try to find something like that to ensure that they’re reacting every time even if they’re positioned in a difficult position.

    Polarizer would give some effect if they’re used outdoors – but I don’t think you will get any noticeable effect from a indoor shoot. At least it’s really hard to know as you don’t see the effect until after the photo is taken. I wouldn’t mess with it.

    Btw, welcome aboard! :)

  36. Andrew says:

    Thank you Carl. I will keep you posted, and who knows, forward an invite if I get the show on the road.

    Best regards

  37. Andrew says:

    Hi Carl,

    just one other thing I’d like to ask, and perhaps this would be of interest to other Sigma SD14 folk.

    Using a radio trigger to set off two or three 530 DG Supers, and seeing various secondhand ‘Supers’ on auction sites at reasonable prices, do you reckon I might be able to get away with using an additional ‘Super’ intended for a Canon or Nikon alongside my Sigma ‘Super’ via wireless connection? i.e. Sigma sd14 + Sigma 530 DG Super for Sigma + Sigma 530 DG Super for canon + Sigma 530 DG Super for Nikon, all connected wirelessly (e.g. via Cactus 2 or 4).

    Cheers again


  38. roch.anthony says:

    Hi Carl! this is my first post.. .. first of all thank you Carl very much for your website, and your beautifull galleries. Your posts and blog is interesting lecture for all sigma users. I started using Sigma SD9 in 2004.. i fallen in love with pictures that this camera captures.. I had other cameras with bayern sensors but with no match to SD9 with the “soul of the picture” that’s the reason that I have kept my SD9 so long!! haveing sold many other cameras (Olympus, Canon, and others) I have recently sold my SD9 and bought SD14..At the first few days I was kind of “dissapointed”.. I was missing Sharpnes of my SD9.. and somehow all WB was not right. all pictures from my SD14 had strange green cast.. I couldnt match the colours I have used to have with my SD9.. which was a big problem for me.. because pictures from my old SD9 where just BETTER than these from SD14 ! I managed to get better and better WB on SD14.. but I had to process each and every picture in SPP or other Raw converter to mach the colours with SD9.. shortly speaking SD14 has MUCH worse WB than SD9 had. SD9 in Auto mode is almost perfect in most situation with minor adjustment.. With SD14 I found myself working on each photo a while. I have sold SD9 already (which I hope I will not regret) .. and now I am working on Silkypix to find it quite better than SPP 4.2 that I originally used before. The colours seem to be a bit better, not so “greenish” I had a real headache with this green cast.. but I managed to correct colour to the point it was almost perfect.. but in some pictures it’s just very difficult and sometimes almost unchangeable! is that just something that can be corrected with White balance or is it the camera fault?.. which Raw converter would you personally recommend? (considering best colours for my SD14 preferably) Best regards from Poland! , Roch

  39. Bob Smith says:

    My DP2 has developed a very strong green cast which appears to be a fault with the camera, any ideas anyone??

  40. Bob, could you send me an email with a green shot photo and I can see if it’s normal or not. Email on the front page.

  41. roch.anthony – The SD14 has some areas where it shines – and some that is rather weak. I hope that the SD1 will be the perfection of both worlds and give us eternal life. :)

    The SD9 is very different in many ways and when light is good, then it’s really amazing – green cast was more or less introduced with the SD14 and in good light it’s never really a problem but when exposure is bad, then it’s seen a bit more. Would you mind sending me one of your shots so that I can see if it’s a problem and if perhaps I can give you a tip or two..

  42. Andrew, I never used the cactus you’re referring to, but if they work similar to my cheap chinese triggers then it should work perfectly.

  43. Bob Smith says:

    Carl Rytterfalk: Bob, could you send me an email with a green shot photo and I can see if it’s normal or not. Email on the front page.  

    Pictures look fine on camera, initial downloaded thumbnails look fine also.Green colour cast added during processing.
    Sorry about the shot, taken for illustrative purposes only :-)

  44. Kendall says:

    What are your thoughts on the DP2 as a studio camera. I mainly do natural light work but I occasionally shoot in the studio for pics of my children. Some of the pics i’ve seen from the DP2 with studio lighting have been somewhat flat color wise and show more grain… Is that normal for these cameras or was I looking at bad examples. I’m hoping this will be my all around camera to add to my LF film shooting. Post any studio shots you have that show the strengths and weaknesness. Thanks

  45. roch.anthony says:

    thanks Carl, I will post some samples.. what I could do at the best.. with WB.. I noticed that the green cast appears on pictures with lot’s of snow and not good weather. (less light) What is most interesting it seem to be better now than it was when I started using the camera.. :/ which is quite strange. I also noticed that SPP 4.1 / 4.2 has more saturated colours than my SD9 wchich is a bit unnatural in some situations. That’s why I will switch to Silkypix.

  46. roch.anthony says:

    anyway in quite ok conditions with moderate – good lens SD14 seems to have the edge.

  47. Bob Smith:
    Pictures look fine on camera, initial downloaded thumbnails look fine also. Green colour cast added during processing.
    Sorry about the shot, taken for illustrative purposes only :-)
    See green picture

    Bob, this is a joke right? :) This isn’t called green cast, this is a green picture. punkt. Or is this really what you get when processing in Sigma Photo pro?

  48. Bob Smith says:

    Carl Rytterfalk:
    Bob, this is a joke right? :) This isn’t called green cast, this is a green picture. punkt. Or is this really what you get when processing in Sigma Photo pro?  

    Something is causing this result, as I said, the images look fine on camera, I download them, the thumbnails look fine, but when the Sigma Photo Pro software processes them in any of the settings, the images turn green – this is no joke!!!!
    This started a few days ago prior to which everything was fine and I have tried everything that I can think of in the way of settings to rectify the problem, the only thing that I have not tried is a different SD card, the one I am using is a 4GB Sandisk – but it seems to be a software issue rather than a sensor fault – my DP1 is fine!!! Have you seen anything like this before??
    Thanks for any suggestions you may have.

  49. Bob Smith,I’ve had lots of different bodies over the years, SD14’s that is (not talking reincarnations or anything like that) and I know I’ve seen a similar thing happen but the other way around. The embedded JPEG when making loooong exposures (30s+) became green but returned to normal looking when developed in Sigma Photo Pro. But I never had this problem as you show.

    How often does this occur? It looks like two channels was trashed and not recorded properly. (Red and Blue). Maybe you could send me the RAW and I’ll pass it on to someone at Sigma..

  50. Kendall says:

    Can you give us any more information about the Difference between the DP2S vs DP2x that was just announced.

  51. Steve Ryul Kim says:

    Hi Carl. This is Steve Kim and I have a casual job as a commercial photographer in Australia. Sometimes I am following your page and
    I guess you are the best profeesion to use Sigma gear.
    To be honest, I’ve seen a lot of information of Sigma product
    from your page. I really appereciated that.^^
    I am planning to have new Sigma SD1..of course some people are sick of waiting this. Currently, I am using medium format camera and Sigma SD14 with 30mm F.1.4. However, as soon as I will get SD1, I will sell my medium format digital back.
    Anyway Here is things..I would like to ask you question about lenses.
    Comparing between 10-20mm F4-5.6 and 10-20mm F.3.5, which one is better for making good quality?
    At the moment I have 30mm and 24-70 f.2.8, so 10-20 is my best choice to have.

    Let me know when you check this out.
    Thank you so much and as one of your follower, I really enjoy to read your blog. ^^

  52. Kendall, The only change that I currently know between the DP2s and DP2x is that it has AFE (Analogue Front End) which according to Sigma will give you slightly better colors – overall improved image quality. And they also emphasize faster image capture (in their press release) – but we know nothing about that yet.

    So, this is what we know so far. I have yet to use it. I have the original DP2 and I love it soooo much. :) Same with the new DP1x which is as sweet.

  53. Hi Steve Ryul Kim,

    I wouldn’t get any of those two 10-20mm lenses if I were you. I would get the new SIGMA 12-24mm F4.5-5.6 EX DG ASPHERICAL / HSM which has the new magic FLD glass inside and lots of SLD glass. Also made for full frame sensors as well, which rumors says is in the making.

    But if I had to choose one of the 10-20 then I would pick the older (F4-5.6) version as reviewers says it’s a bit sharper – or get the new 8-16mm which is brilliantly sharp and just a very nice performer! But still made for APC sensors. My guess is that the SD1 should have the best in the class glass – and that’s why 12-24 most likely is the best choice.

    Good luck and keep us posted! :)

  54. Kendall says:

    Carl Rytterfalk,

    Sounds good. My DP2s arrives tomorrow and I was just wondering if I should have waited for the new version. Doesn’t seem like it’s too groundbraking. Now if they would have announced an interchangeable lens version with the SD1 sensor I would be mad that I didn’t wait a little longer.

  55. Bob Smith says:

    Carl Rytterfalk,

    Thanks for your reply and apologies for the delay in getting back to you but I’ve been a little busy :-)
    I have since messed about with settings and stuff, purchased a new SD card and the DP2 is fine now with the Sigma software – however, if I upload the raw files straight to lightroom they are green as before.
    This is weird.
    I tried to update the firmware to 1.05 (it is on 1.04) and it refuses to download from the sigma site – I am using windows 7 – maybe this is the problem.

  56. Carl,

    I’m a tremendous fan of your work and the images you produce with Sigma products. After thoroughly enjoying my DP2s for several months, I decided to invest in an SD15 kit to give me more flexibility. I purchased a body and 3 lenses:

    – 30mm EX f1.4
    – 17-70mm f2.8-4 OS
    – 105mm EX f2.8

    With the DP2s, I was shooting crisp, beautiful images from the very first shutter operation. But I have yet to produce a single image of comparable quality with the SD15. In fact, I’ve yet to produce a single image that I would consider good quality with the SD15.

    Even between ISO100 and 400, there is considerable chromatic noise in nearly every image ( I almost never noticed this – even in low light – with the DP2s. And at ISO400, which is very evidently the top of the SD15’s usable ISO range for color, a strange red/green banding is very visible in brown midtone values (

    Apart from IQ, the camera seems to have a very hard time with exposure evaluation. I’ve made dozens of test shots with different metering options, and have yet to find a consistent way to evaluate light properly within the camera.

    As for the 17-70mm OS lens, I seem to be experiencing the back focusing issue so many other have reported. The majority of shots, even at 17mm fail to find sharp focus. It’s impossible to tell in-camera if the focus is tack-sharp, as the green indicator dot is apparently unreliable.

    Ultimately, my question is whether or not these sound like hardware issues that can be solved by sending the gear back to Sigma or not. I would hate to ship the components back for service only to find that there is nothing “wrong” with the equipment.

    I spent months researching before the purchase, and have invested a significant amount of money and personal faith in Sigma. I’ve seen countless examples of the quality images this camera is capable of, but have yet to see similar images produced by my own gear.

    Any advice you can offer would be very appreciated, Carl. Many thanks.

  57. Jesper Hansen says:

    Hi Carl
    I have been trying to get solid information regarding sd14 vs. sd15 and can’t find any good answers. People seem generally happy with their choices. I am about to place a final bid on an ebay item at 400 Euros for the sd14, but I have second doubts whether I would find it lacking in any respect as supposed to the sd15. Also the promise of SD1 is very tempting, but what we don’t know about is just fabled unicorns. I hope you have time to answer this one question regarding the sd14 vs. sd15.

    Thanks a lot.
    Jesper Hansen

    • You can say like this – The SD15 is performing much better – buffer is HUGE and it feels like it never runs out. Battery life is much improved. About twice. Colors looks more real, gray has less of other colors inside – more gray. On the week side, you get more noise in higher ISO (it’s likely has something to do with the enhanced color) and you also loose some of the dynamic range compared to the SD14, especially in the highlights. About half a stop.

      Should you buy it? Not sure, I’d wait for the SD1. SD14 on the other hand can be found really cheap and also gives you more dramatic colors. Not as correct as SD15 – but .. different. :)

  58. Wing says:

    I have a DP1s and I am blow away by the sharp and detail pictures that it makes. I used it last during a trip to Banff and Jasper. I think it is neck to neck to my Canon 1D MKII with 17-40L lens. Now I want to use it indoor but the 140 flash is too limiting. How can I use it with a higher power external flash?

  59. Jeff says:


    As we all anticipate the upcoming SD1, I was wondering what you might suggest as an additional lens to add to the mix. I’m an old user of the SD14 with a 30mm f1.4 and an older 17-70mm f2.8-4 (not quite sure what the spec differences are to the new version). I don’t use the 30mm as much as I’d like since I tend to get caught in situations where the 50-70mm macro lens fits better. Maybe a few treks through forest capturing mushrooms, lichen, and mosses would help change my approach.

    My other question is: what would you do to set up a shot that has a point source of light somewhere between 2500-3000°C? I should have shot this (see attached) with something other than ISO 50, used a decent ND filter, and provided some fill light to capture more of the surrounding equipment. But when you’ve got levitated liquid Al2O3 you never know how much time you’ve really got to take the shot.

    [img] – Version 3.jpeg[/img]

    Additionally, it looks like there’s a bug in my latest X3F Utilities and OS X 10.6.7. It works for many items, but occasionally navigating through the Finder will crash Quicklook. I should be able to get a new version out about the time the SD1 is released. Hopefully there won’t be any changes in the X3F format that need to be supported.


    Jeff Sickel

  60. Jeff says:

    [img] – Version 3-1.jpeg[/img]

  61. Jeff says:

    Must have caught the image upload in the midst of a system change. Here’s another attempt on the new blog:

    • Hi Jeff.. First off, how are you? :) And again, thanks for your wonderful X3F tool. Nice to know that you’re still around and already thinking about the SD1 update.

      Now to your questions. Lenses. Well, I’m not sure what you want to use your lens for – same as the shot you provided? Or would mushrooms etc be one of the main area of your wanted photography? Perhaps the 70mm 2.8 could be of assistans as it’s a really really nice lens. It has great bokeh, saturation and contrast and I’ve used it a lot for portraits etc. Focus engine isn’t HSM but it’s decent.

      Then you also have the 105mm OS, 150mm – primes.. truly awesome primes. :) And perfectly suited for the new SD1 – especially the new 105mm as it has some weather resistance included.

      Over to your third question. I would use tripod. Perhaps have a bracketed exposure of three shots in order to get some of that surrounding detail. ISO50 is a good choice as light tend to be a bit on the yellow side and it’s much easier to correct that using ISO50. But on the other hand I have none experience with the photography you try to do. :)

  62. ChristianHass says:

    Hi Carl

    I just got my first Sigma, a DP1. There’s some amazing deals to be had on this camera now, I paid just 1200 danish kroner for it.
    I’m already in love with the controls, it’s very different but everything makes sense and works as you’d expect it to.

    Your blog has been a great help and inspiration so far, I particularly liked your video series on using SPP, very informative and easy to understand. Your enthusiasm for photography and the Sigma cameras is very positive and even contagious, I know it makes me want to get out and shoot more pictures.

    I was wondering if you have any experience of using an external bounce flash with DP1, like a Sigma EF-530 Super DG Nikon?
    From what I can see it should use sTTL with the DP1, and then I can use the flash with my Nikon DSLR as well, but I’m not completely sure it’ll work with the Sigma, and the local camera stores aren’t either.

    Thanks in advance!

    • Hi Christian!

      The EF140 is the only flash that currently works with TTL on any DP camera. You can, however use any flash as well, but only in M mode. So if you get a Sigma 530 (for Nikon) then you should be able to use it on both cameras – but with a little more help on the DP1.

      That price you got is great!

  63. BarrieGrieve says:

    First post, am about to by a dp2s (hopefully by end of month ;-)
    Just wanted to mention to any and all that Sigma Photopro 4 works under Wine on the Linux OS, I tried it with some of your sample raws (WhooHoo!).
    A canny wait 8-))

  64. Jeff says:


    Thanks for the feedback. I’ll look into those primes as I’ve really enjoyed shooting w/ the 30mm. For my current subject, I don’t think I’ve got a flash strong enough or additional lighting to counteract the light source. A lot more testing will have to take place with bracketing and filters.

  65. John says:

    Hi Carl Rytterfalk,

    I follow your blog, from the silence, with great enthusiasm. Your contributions in the blog are wealth-producing and excellent for any photographer, not only for those lovers of the fabulous Foveon X3 sensor.

    Recently I have acquired a SD15 and have a doubt with regard to an article in which you were trying to process an image in B&W with Raw Developer to provide it with an film aspect:

    I leave the link to the shoot that I did in order that you indicate the committed mistake to me:

    I also see very much noise and bands. Is this normal or is the sensor damaged?

    On the other hand I have not seen in your blog information about SIGMA 24 – 70 mm F2.8 EX DG lens. Is not it good? Is there another better option in this range?

    Thanks ;)

    • Hi John,

      Your RAW file looks OK using monochrome WB – but something you should be aware of with any Sigma camera is that high ISO colors just don’t come out good. The three layer design of the sensor works best in good light or with longer exposures at low ISO – but higher ISO is a no no. You can, however, switch over to monochrome WB in SPP and by that most “issues” disappears and most of banding are gone and you gain a couple of stops in the highlights.

      The 24-70 is a lens I never owned – only lent. So that’s the simple reason to why I don’t write much about it. The latest 24-70 with the HSM focus engine is said to be quite nice!

      My favorite, of the ones I do have is the 18-50 2.8 Macro which is truly a very sharp lens and a great companion to the next Sigma.

      Hope this helps a little.

  66. Stephen says:

    Hi Carl,

    Your site has certainly encouraged a lot to turn to and stay with Sigma cameras, me being one of them. Thanks a bunch for this!

    When I handle my own Sigma DP2s images I don’t seem able to control its color – it is okay, but far from what I would love it to be. The images I manage to produce are either yellow/pinkish or lack of depth. I keep wondering how you process your image to produce that kind of color accuracy and depth as well as a touch of arts.

    I’m really curious about your workflow, i.e. what applications an image would go through from Raw file to your final outcome. It would be of great help because then I can then know I have a trustworthy workflow and can concentrate totally on post production.

    P.S.: I wouldn’t ask for the exact methods you would normally employ, though, as it’s like asking a magician how he does his tricks. :)

    Thanks and really hope that you could share this with me.


  67. Ruvi says:

    Hi, I saw your jewelery tutorial on youtube and I was wondering what the adhesive surface you use to hold the jewelery in place is called and where I might be able to find it.

    Much appreciated,

  68. Karl says:

    Hello Carl;I have a Sigma SD14 and SD15 .The 15 seems to take much longer to focus and set itself up to release the shutter than the 14 does,both cameras using the same lenses (17-70mm f2.8-4.5 DC and a 50mm f1.4 DG HSM) Is this normal or is something wrong with the 15? Both units were bought used. Both cameras are on identical setting to test with. Any thoughts? Tack

    • I did notice recently that the SD15 is slightly slower (FPS) than the SD14 – perhaps it’s slower in more ways than this? The SD1 on the other hand is MUCH faster. At least when it comes down to pure FPS.

      Answer is, I will have to try this when I’m back in Sweden. I only brought the SD1 with me to China.

  69. That’s the same stuff you put around the glass window to keep it in place.. it’s soft and white and can be used to put up paintings on a wall.. I’m sure you know what I’m talking about. :)

  70. powP0Wpow says:

    Seems with the SD1, everyone completely forgot about the DP2x… So I came here with two questions:

    Do you know if the AF performance in the DP2x is different at all from the DP2s? Also, how does the AFE affect IQ as far affecting low ISO’s?

    The reason I’m asking is that I’m living abroad and the DP2s and the DP2x here are basically the same price.

    Thanks for the help.

    • I have yet to try the dp2x but I think that If they come at approximately the same price then go for the latter – it’s supposed to be better. Sigma often has small, not mentioned upgrades that could come in handy. A little bit of speed here and there might make a difference. :)

  71. Brian says:

    Hey Carl,

    I am trying to decide between buying a Sigma dp2x or a fujifilm x100. The sensor sizes are fairly close but the megapixels seem hard to compare because of the nature of bayer vs foveon. Do you think the sigmas “lower resolution” would begin to show in an 8×10 print for example?

    Also, i love your style!
    I have seen a consistent thread through all your work.

  72. Hi Mr Carl:
    I need your help !!!!
    My camera’s model is Canon Rebel T2i 550D with 18-55mm zoom kit lens.
    which lens is best choice for 360*180 QTVR :
    Sigma 10mm Fisheye
    Sigma 4.5mm Fisheye
    Canon 10-22mm
    Sigma 8-16mm ultra wide
    thank you so much
    i’m waiting ….

  73. Bill Zhang says:

    I have a problem. I like sigma camera, as dp1 and dp2. Buy two of them, or keep one is enough? which one is better?
    Some friends told me, dp1 and dp2 is for different kind of photo.
    Keep two camera is good choice.
    Anyone would like to give me some advices?
    Thank you.

    • Christian Hass says:

      Which is better for you depends on your preferences.
      DP1 has a wide angle lens, DP2 has a “normal” angle lens, so it comes down to the pictures you want to take with it.

  74. Dennis says:

    I’ve recently added a DP2x to my DP1s.

    The handling of the 2x is in all respects vastly improved over the 1s, and I like the focal length of the 2x better for all except mountain landscape images.

    The downside of the 2x for me is that the colours and skies seem not quite as good as with the 1s! This supports other comments saying that the new x models with the analogue front end have more accurate though less pleasing colour, and that the highlights hold up less well.

    On balance and for general photography if I could only have one DP series camera, or had to decide which to purchase first, I think I’d go for a DP2s for the lens and handling and to retain the pre AFE colours.

    But if you are taking mainly landscape images, (and per the previous post the type of images you take must be the main decider) I’d live with the slightly less “Foveon” colours and have a DP1x for the handling improvements.

    Good luck and I don’t think you’ll be dissapointed whichever you choose,

    Maybe one day we can have a DP3 with interchangeable lenses :-)

    • Dennis says:

      PS: Just a thought, I’ve only used SPP 4.2 with the DP2x, maybe with the later 5 version the AFE colour would be more pleasing?

  75. DennisBeyer says:

    Dear Friends!

    I just got the chance to test the SD1 here in Switzerland. Played around with it for half an hour and tested different lenses. I ususally work with digital medium format (Phase One P45+), but I also love the clean (in good light) and sharp files delivered by my SD14`s and my DP1.
    When I reviewd the SD1 files, shot on a bright day at base ISO 200, I realised that areas with no details and with even colour, like the blue sky, are full with luminance noise, and I also see evenly placed and perfectly parallel vertical lines / stripes running through the sky- looking like bright lum-noise as well. The SD1 was equiped with the latest firmware, and I reviewed the files in SPP 5.01.2 for Mac. I post a crop of one the pictures here so that you can see what I mean (unfortunately SPP quit running after 10 minutes and is now crashing everytime 5 seconds after I try to open it- what`s wrong now?)
    Could anyone please help and tell me, if this is the normal output quality I have to expect from a SD1? I developed the picture with sharpening set to -2 , fill light +0.3, contrast +0.3, brightness -0.5.
    I have never seen such a noise pattern in a SD14 file- these files were absolutely clean under such bright ambient light conditions… Even after running the file through Nik Dfine, that noise pattern is not only still highly visible in 100% view, but also in full 300dpi print size. Am I doing somethig wrong, or must there be something wrong with that specific cam model I tested- or is this just normal now?
    Thank you very much for your help!

  76. GM says:

    Hi Carl….

    I purchased a DP2X to and have some sunrise pictures to process. In order to make the sky a little more artistic, I like to use the graduated filter tool in Lightroom. Is it best to use SPP to make tiff’s, then import the tiff’s into Lightroom? I’ve not settled on a workflow for the DP2X raw files and any advice you have is greatly appreciated.


  77. Warren says:

    Hi Carl,

    Thanks for hosting such an informative site!

    I currently own a Sigma DP2 and I have to say that the detail in images from this camera are far superior to my D700 and M9… it’s also smaller and lighter too! My only problem is with the green cast and inaccurate colours at times. Do you know if the DP2x solves either of these issues? Is it worth the upgrade? The high iso problems don’t bother me, as I usually just convert those to B&W, which are beautiful even at iso 3200.

    The DP2 is the only camera I have even owned who’s raw files look just as good at 100% as they do at 33% on my screen… amazing!

    I’ve attached a high iso self-portrait and two of my GF



  78. Hunter says:

    I’m rather smitten with the thought of owning a DP series camera or two. My main fear is the prehistoric lcd display. I’ve seen posts of how its difficult even to compose images in bright light, sadly grainy display in low light. Curious what accessories DP shooters might have used over the years (hoods, loupes, etc) to make shooting easier & less aggravating with the ….. unbelievably flawed 240K display. Thanks for any enlightenment!

  79. Dennis says:

    Just a quick non expert comment from me in case it helps any?

    I have a DP1s and DP2x and have never found them to be at much of a real World disadvantage when composing an image compared to say the Canon S95 that I also use, despite their lower spec display.

    In bright light the shooting info usually remains reasonably clear even if colours and contrast are overwhelmed.

    Reviewing an image on the DP’s however is pretty hopeless so I tend to bracket raw exposures and select the best when I get back to the computer. I’ve never needed to consider hoods or viewfinders under any conditions, indoor or out.

    I think if you give a DP a chance and shoot raw you’ll probably find you can live with the below par display and enjoy the above par and rather delightful image quality?

    Good luck with your choices.
    Best regards,

  80. Andrew in Rome says:

    Hi Carl,

    thanks for all the useful information on your site and for hosting a hub for all us forevon fanatics.

    I am about to start a portrait shoot with my sd14 and wanted to ask your advice on how to tether the images taken to a laptop for review? if you know of the existance of any tethering software?

    Any tips are much appreciated.

    All the very best for 2012.


  81. Andrew in Rome says:

    excuse the typo…Foveon

  82. Andrei Bulai says:

    Hey, Carl!
    Sorry for my english;-)
    Sigma – it’s incredibly cool, and your site and the photos are amazing!
    Need your advice:
    Can you please tell how to make sharp pictures with flash on sigma sd14?
    In this picture I was using the directional light flash x 530 (in the hall ceiling height of 6 meters).
    Central heating using autofocus on the face (so lights flash autofocus works only in this mode), blocked the auto-focus, and framing.
    but in the end is almost always the person turned out not in focus)
    I had to use the autofocus spot so as not to move the camera?
    I can send you a file in x3f
    If you can show videos as you do – people have long been familiar with the photographic art and the Sigma :-)
    Thank you!
    Good luck!

    • Pit Hermann says:

      Hello Andrei
      well i took a look at your picture, the background is really sharp
      you must have been relativ near to the person and not in a standing position. so you must have turned the cam upwards to focus the eyes with the middle focus point. So taht’s the problem
      the distance cam to eyes is much longer than the distance cam straight to body so if you focus the eyes with the middle point the straight focussed point is behind her. problem solving:
      if you don’t want to make use (or it’s impossible to use) an other focus point of the cam, stand up do a straight focus on the eyes, hold the focus and move down again and do the shot.


  83. nels says:

    hi, i’ve bought the Yongnuo YN460 flash..i have two of them and im having a problem getting them both to flash OUTDOORS …i have receivers attached to them both but when i release the trigger only one flashes…. what could be the problem? ..what settings should i put them on?

  84. Bill says:

    I have a new SD15, when taken a picture with camera cover, find out a red pixel and a green pixels on the right side when the picture zoom to 100% in the computer screen. Picture was taken in Manual model, ISO 100, F2.8, shutter speed 30s
    Please tell me, what’s wrong with CMOS?
    Thank you!

  85. Carl says:

    Hi Bill!

    What you see is likely one or two dead pixels – These are often seen when using longer exposures at night and normally the software removes them without you ever knowing their excistence. Have a look at the embedded jpeg and see if they’re present (sometimes the internal software is better calibrated than the external raw converter). This is somthing that isn’t too uncommon and I would suggest you learn to live with it and remove them using PS it any other software.

    If you used jpg instead of raw – then I would strongly recommend the use of spp. But I guess you did already. :)

  86. Marcin says:

    HI Carl plz read E-mail

  87. Marcin says:

    Hi Carl My English is very bad and I use google translator he he . My question is if you told me Dp1x Sigma? for street photography and to use every day? I need a small camera and the Sigma seems to be very good just a pity that the lens is F1.8 ;D

    I found an interesting link with pictures DP1

    Regards Marcin Poland

  88. Pit-Hermann says:

    Hi Carl, hi @ all

    i got very confused about the informations on the external powersupplies belonging to the Sigma dslrs.
    SD 14 is anounced to be used with SAC-2
    SD1 is anounced to be used with SAC-4
    for SD15 you find different informations sometimes SAC-2 and sometimes SAC-4

    i sent an email to Sigma Japan support asking for if it’s possible to use SD1 with SAC-2 or on the other way SD14 with SAC-4 but i received no answer. With other question they had a very fast respond. I called up Sigma Germany support and reached a very friendly technician and asked him about the difference between SAC-2 and SAC-4. He said that i doesn’t know but would try to che it out. A few hours later he called me back and told that he measured the output of some SAC-2 and SAC-4 and found that SAC-4 output voltage in average is 0.3 V lower than SAC-2 output.
    He also tried to use SAC-2 on SD1 and did some shots and found no problems but he can’t promised that nothing will happen negativly while using this combination. The real truth iis that i recognized that SD14, SD15 and SD1 provide the same information on the bottom label for external power: 9V , 3A.

    Someone out there who knows more about that theme ?


    • Pit Hermann says:

      just received this from Sigma support Japan
      But that’s not really clear

      For the SD1 camera, please use the SAC-4 which is the dedicated accessory for the SD1 camera in order to optimize the performance of the SD1.

  89. Maciek says:


    Sigma DP, just like any camera, is good for street photography. In this case, Sigma has a very slow picture buffor, a little dark lens (4.0), but the shutter loud is damned quiet!


  90. Ananda Mukherjee says:

    Hello Carl,

    First of all, very recently I come across your videos and website. And I love it!

    Myself Ananda Mukherjee, an amateur photographer from India. I have owned a digital compact camera and had some experience with film. As I don’t have any dslr body or glasses, now I am seriously thinking to start with SD15 (SD1 Merrill is still out of my budget) and couple of Sigma glasses.
    I have some questions regarding this:
    First, what is the average life expectancy of this sensor? It is very important for me to know as the weather of India is very hot and humid (average relative humidity 90% and temperature 32+/-2 degree centigrade).
    And next, what Sigma glasses are good to start with? My primary interests are landscape, cityscape, people and candid portraits.

    I apologize for the poor english. Waiting for your response. Thanks in advance.

    Ananda Mukherjee

  91. Joel Hall says:

    Hello Carl! My name is Joel and Im 18 years old.
    Im doing my final project in school and perhaps the most important of my entire time in school. The question I have for you is if it’s okay for me to use your picture of a Statoil station called ” Gas station by night ” from October 19th 2007. I’ll be using it on my front page for my book cover. I’ve been on apprenticeship on Statoil every week on monday and tuesday my entire last year in school and I really liked your picture! I hope that I’ll get answered as soon as possible!
    Thank you!

    Best regards
    Joel Hall

  92. Gilbert says:

    Hello Carl, the site tends to discourage me from trying to experiment with the SD15, yet one of your readers says that Sigma has renewed his interest in B&W photography. Will I really benefit from trying the SD15 to give new perspectives to my photography- mostly Portraits, Fashion, Still Life, People? Thanks for sharing. rgds, Gilbert

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