Sigma DP2 Merrill: Have any of you tried it?
/forum/topic/1150855/46

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Luis Cunha
Registered: Dec 26, 2012
Total Posts: 113
Country: Portugal

My provocation was Merrill vs Leica Monochrome. For me a Merrill is also/mainly for B&W work.
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Is there such thing as "right color"?
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Image quality, portability, affordability. The Merrill represents this for that was not possible until now (did I said that?).



sculptormic
Registered: Feb 05, 2012
Total Posts: 1098
Country: Netherlands

cjrpostma wrote:
Personally, as someone who owns a D800E, D700, 5D Mk II, RX100, and the DP2M, there is something in the Merrill files that none of my other cameras can produce. It is just sharper. On my other cameras, I use lenses like the 85 1.2 II, 70-200 VR II, 35L, 135L, etc. The Merrill is just way sharper, even hand held.

It is very true that the colors are hard to get perfect and that shooting above ISO 100 greatly reduces image quality. I am most excited to download the files from my Merrill above any other camera I own though. This is almost a problem because I always just want to shoot with the Merrill even if the situation calls for a different tool. Also, I find the Merrill's interface very intuitive. I really like how simple it is. Everything I need is just right there in the quick menu.

Now that I have four batteries, the viewfinder, grip, close up lens, and a nice wrist strap, I don't feel like carrying any other camera with me. I'm slightly infatuated with this camera right now, if you couldn't tell.


Sharper then the D800E? I red it was sort of simular in detail/sharpness. Well I couldn't know.

That quick menu is quiet nice indeed!

I was just thinking to buy a Canon 6D for my C/Y lenses but I don't know. It is nice and small and low light is interesting... But oké I am going off topic here.



carstenw
Registered: Dec 26, 2005
Total Posts: 14915
Country: Germany

sculptormic wrote:
Carsten, You should try one from a friend (Bobu, or something) in Berlin and work on the files in SPP.
I would be curious what you think of it.


I would love to, but to be honest, I have been too equipment-focused for some time, and I need to back off a bit and spend some time trying to figure out what I really want to do with photography. I need to spend more time with medium format film first, and sort that out (I own a Hasselblad 2000FC/M, Rolleiflex 6008i and RZ67, and some unused stuff). Then I need to spend some time with my DSLR stuff and sort that out (SLR/n, S5 Pro, D3, D800). And I need to spend a little time with large format as well, probably sell my Linhof and buy a Chamonix, or just sell it all. And I need to look at my FM2 and XPan. I just have too much stuff around and it distracts me (and ties up some money which should be used to pay down a loan I have). Once I have picked the stuff I really want to use, I need to figure out what I want to do with it.

So I couldn't really give the DP2M a proper try right now. Maybe in the summer?



alba63
Registered: Dec 21, 2003
Total Posts: 517
Country: Germany

So I checked some of the samples I found online again and try to upload a crop of one of them here; I am sorry but do not remember the name of the poster (I hope it is ok to post this crop which doesn't show much of the photo, if someone recognizes it as his photo, and does not want it to be posted, please inform me and I take it down).

(link removed).



carstenw
Registered: Dec 26, 2005
Total Posts: 14915
Country: Germany

That looks like a too-low JPG compression quality setting. Could it be? Maybe the JPG quality setting needs to be higher than usual to accommodate the high pixel-level resolution?



sculptormic
Registered: Feb 05, 2012
Total Posts: 1098
Country: Netherlands

Brrrrrr that's a lot of nice stuff to sort out.

Well my decision was clear since I sold my Voigtländer R4A, I would sort of never go back to film, although I still have some cameras for sentimental reasons, I guess.



alba63
Registered: Dec 21, 2003
Total Posts: 517
Country: Germany

carstenw wrote:
That looks like a too-low JPG compression quality setting. Could it be?


Yes this is the case - the whole JPEG was only 1,5MB which is way too low for this type of image. 10-15MP is necessary to render that kind of detail.

I removed the link because bad example.

Bernie



Luis Cunha
Registered: Dec 26, 2012
Total Posts: 113
Country: Portugal

Anyone with good B&W examples to show, please?



nandadevieast
Registered: Aug 12, 2012
Total Posts: 351
Country: India







Luis Cunha
Registered: Dec 26, 2012
Total Posts: 113
Country: Portugal

B&W ,-) thanks.
How was your workflow?



Tariq Gibran
Registered: Oct 01, 2006
Total Posts: 9922
Country: United States

sculptormic wrote:
cjrpostma wrote:
Personally, as someone who owns a D800E, D700, 5D Mk II, RX100, and the DP2M, there is something in the Merrill files that none of my other cameras can produce. It is just sharper. On my other cameras, I use lenses like the 85 1.2 II, 70-200 VR II, 35L, 135L, etc. The Merrill is just way sharper, even hand held.

It is very true that the colors are hard to get perfect and that shooting above ISO 100 greatly reduces image quality. I am most excited to download the files from my Merrill above any other camera I own though. This is almost a problem because I always just want to shoot with the Merrill even if the situation calls for a different tool. Also, I find the Merrill's interface very intuitive. I really like how simple it is. Everything I need is just right there in the quick menu.

Now that I have four batteries, the viewfinder, grip, close up lens, and a nice wrist strap, I don't feel like carrying any other camera with me. I'm slightly infatuated with this camera right now, if you couldn't tell.


Sharper then the D800E? I red it was sort of simular in detail/sharpness. Well I couldn't know.


At 100% view on screen, the DP Merrills are sharper than the D800E that I owned (and returned due to a number of issues). That said, the D800E is capable of a little more detail with a good lens (and larger print sizes).

Imo, there really is no comparison when looking at an image captured by an interpolated color, bayer based sensor and one captured with a full color foveon sensor, regardless if the bayer sensor employs an AA filter or not. That artificial look is not there with the Merrills with correct exposure and processing (and I concur that proper exposure is much more important with these cameras) - and the default values in SPP will result in waay over sharpening, artifacts and all. I believe "-2" is equivalent to no sharpening in the SPP software with most finding something between that and -1 to be about right, depending on subject matter and the extent of additional post processing. Anyway, one needs to be in complete control - and spend some time learning the in's and outs - of shooting and processing the images from the Merrills to really be able to make an accurate assessment of the cameras capabilities. I think it's more-so true of this camera and it's software than most conventional cameras.



nandadevieast
Registered: Aug 12, 2012
Total Posts: 351
Country: India







sculptormic
Registered: Feb 05, 2012
Total Posts: 1098
Country: Netherlands

Mysterious. Fishing?



nandadevieast
Registered: Aug 12, 2012
Total Posts: 351
Country: India

Luis Cunha wrote:
B&W ,-) thanks.
How was your workflow?

Hi,
SPP (neutral/auto} to PS (TIFF)
BW conversion in PS, different sliders draged to hearts content



nandadevieast
Registered: Aug 12, 2012
Total Posts: 351
Country: India

sculptormic wrote:
Mysterious. Fishing?


Not fishing...just mysterious
It was extremely cold and foggy morning...she is feeling cold..



Luis Cunha
Registered: Dec 26, 2012
Total Posts: 113
Country: Portugal

Thank you Nandadevieast.



Luis Cunha
Registered: Dec 26, 2012
Total Posts: 113
Country: Portugal

Any thoughts about Merrill´s vs Fuji X-pro1?
Foveon vs "traditional" (it´s not the same old Bayer; it´s an X-trans says Fuji) sensor. Both without AA filter.
Both compact. Fuji is a bit more expensive but... more lens. Merrill=one lens.



juan_amores
Registered: May 21, 2009
Total Posts: 437
Country: Spain

Happy new year!!


_SDI0263 por John Loves, en Flickr



Tariq Gibran
Registered: Oct 01, 2006
Total Posts: 9922
Country: United States

Luis Cunha wrote:
Any thoughts about Merrill´s vs Fuji X-pro1?
Foveon vs "traditional" (it´s not the same old Bayer; it´s an X-trans says Fuji) sensor. Both without AA filter.
Both compact. Fuji is a bit more expensive but... more lens. Merrill=one lens.


High ISO, Fuji wins easily. Base ISO, the Fuji is outclassed, particularly when it comes to fine landscape detail, which is an area where the Fuji is really not that good. Both are fairly specialized tools imo and both have their strengths and weaknesses.

If you are a landscape shooter and want ultimate quality in a compact camera and are able to shoot at base ISO, I don't think there is anything that can touch these DP Merrill's.

Of course, the best solution is Kit's - own and use both for their specific strengths.



Kit Laughlin
Registered: Mar 08, 2004
Total Posts: 3437
Country: Australia

Tariq, as always, the voice of wisdom (and not just because you are quoting me!). Seriously, though, the pair are a truly excellent combination.

The X-E1 is (for me) the maturing of mirrorless. The UI and ergonomics are superb (especially if you get the grip, which also centres the tripod hole); you will never need the menus once set up, and you can use auto ISO 6400 with impunity, under any kind of lighting. It's that good. The Fuji sensor does an amazing job with colour, and especially skin tones. The 35/1.4 is one of the best ever lenses I have used—and that covers a lot of territory, as many of us here know. As well, because auto ISO works so well, I have taken to setting shutter and aperture (to freeze movement and to get the look I want, DOF-wise) and letting the ISO take care of itself. For naturalistic and fast work, this is the best camera I have used, though when the light gets lower, AF performance does drop. It is no DSLR in this regard—but like the DP2 M, no one minds being photographed by it.

The DP2 M has the most intelligent UI I have ever used. It is simpler than the X-E1 and, in its niche, simply untouchable in IQ, in my view. It is very light, even with the Freniac grip, and when the pano kit arrives I will put up an images that shows the lightest solution to the eternal question of what do you take in to the bush to shoot trees, landscapes, water—well, nature in any form.

But it's more than a one-trick pony. While I was down at my Mother's place for Christmas, I make portraits with both cameras: the Fuji made the 'slice of life on the fly'-type documentary portraits; the DP2 M made the 'please sit here and sit still' more formal ones—and both show quite different facets of the same people. I like both, very much.

Oh, and a Happy New Year to all; we get the new year before all of you!



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