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Sigma DP2 14 Megapixel Digital Camera Announced
Sigma's fixed-lens, high end compact gets tweaked.
(© urban75, 22nd Sept 2008)
Sigma's first stab at producing a high end, pro-luring digital compact failed to feel the love of the photo cognoscenti despite the big juicy dSLR sensor lurking inside, so the company have tried again with their updated version 2.
There's certainly not a lot of change to see on the outside, with the camera sharing the same understated black lines as its predecessor, and there's been no change in the sensor department either, with the same 14 megapixel (2,652×1,768×3 layers) direct image sensor inside.
The lens has been improved, upgrading the glass to a faster F2.8 lens fixed at 24.2mm - which works out to an equivalent to 41mm on a 35mm SLR.
Personally, we'd prefer a more wideangle lens (say 28mm or 35mm) as that would seem more appropriate for a street shooting little fella like this.
Keen snappers may also find the fixed lens approach beginning to look a little dour compared to the ultra-compact dSLRs emerging through the Micro Four Thirds Camera system.
The first version of the camera was noted for its image quality but marred by sluggish performance, so we're hoping that the improved TRUE II (Three-layer Responsive Ultimate Engine) image processing software moves things along a bit quicker.
Designed as a carry-anywhere compact for photo enthusiasts, the Sigma DP2 measures up at 113.3mm/4.5in (W) x 59.5mm/2.3in (h) x 54.6mm/2.1in (d) and offers three metering modes, Evaluative Metering, Centre Weighted Average Metering and Spot Metering.
Photo-tweakin' types can busy themselves with the Program AE, Shutter Priority AE, Aperture Priority AE or Manual exposure modes, and there's ladles of exposure compensation available in 1/3 stop increments from +3.0 to -3.0 stops.
The camera also offers a RAW recording mode with the RAW data format keeping brightness and colour data in a 1:1 ratio without relying on interpolation.
Sigma have stuck with the same 2.5 inch TFT colour LCD monitor, which is a tad disappointing considering that several other unmarket digicams have moved up to more impressive 3? screens.
We tried to get our hands on a review model from Sigma the first time around to no avail, but we'll try again because this is a camera we're very much interested in. In the meantime, expect a review of the excellent Ricoh GX200 soon.