The Ultimate series ~:~ Sigma DP1

Posted: May 12, 2008 by ralliart12 in Technopia
Tags: , , , , ,

Let’s drop that one-liner right about…NOW:

A FULL SPEC COMPACT DIGITAL CAMERA WITH ALL THE POWER OF DIGITAL SLR CAMERA

& then we highlight the 6 feature tech this snapper’d have got to offer <quoted from the DP-1’s brochure>:

1. Full-scale sensor

Film or digital: big photoreceptors mean high image quality.

The bigger the film size, the better the image quality. That’s common knowledge in the world of film cameras. Ever tried using a Brownie film camera to shoot high-quality photos? Then you’ll have a vivid sense of the exponential increase in image quality as film size increases. Basically, the same goes for digital cameras. In other words, sensor performance being equal, the image quality of a digital camera is determined by the size of the image sensor, be it CCD or CMOS. At 20.7 x 13.8mm, the DP1’s 14-megapixel image sensor is SLR-sized. This is about 12 times the size of the 1- to 2.5-inch sensor, and 7 times the size of a 1- to 1.8-inch sensor used in a conventional digital compact. This generous size takes the DP1’s image quality to a different dimension.

2. Direct image sensor

In developing the SD series of DSLR cameras, Sigma has used the Foveon X3® direct image sensor right from the outset. Its outstanding image quality performance has earned high praise from users around the world who have very high standards when it comes to image quality. “SD image quality is something else” and “pictures taken with an SD have an emotional quality”, are typical comments. With their solid, nuanced feel and amazing vividness, images taken with SD-series cameras have a quality that cannot be adequately explained in terms of figures and pixel counts: “emotional image-quality” is perhaps the only way to put it. The secret behind this extraordinary image quality lies in the revolutionary mechanism of this unique direct image sensor.

3. Integral lense

The DP1’s integral 16.6mm F4 lens (equivalent to 28mm on a 35mm film camera) may be small, but it’s a high-performance wide-angle single-focus lens designed to the standards of interchangeable SLR lenses. Manufactured to exacting standards, large-diameter (14.5mm) aspherical glass molds are arranged in the fourth group. Besides achieving high resolution and high- contrast performance, we have succeeded in storing the whole lens unit in a compact lens barrel. Its MTF – the value indicating lens performance – is on a par with that of the interchangeable lenses used in SLR cameras.

4. Imaging capability

Sigma created a new image-processing engine specially designed for the DP1’s direct image sensor. We called it the Three-layer Responsive Ultimate Engine, or “TRUE” for short. Applying our exhaustive knowledge of the image-creation mechanism of the direct image sensor, we focused on using a proprietary algorithm to optimize and record the rich optical signal it captures. The “optimal image” is something we have always pursued in our development of DSLR cameras, and in developing the DP1, a compact camera with a unique mission, we mobilized all our skill towards attaining this goal. The rich optical signal captured by the high-performance lens and groundbreaking direct image sensor is transformed into an information-rich image: this is the important role played by the brand-new “TRUE” image-processing engine.

5. Making pictures

The DP1 has an X3F mode (RAW file format) in which all the image data captured by the sensor can be recorded without any significant deterioration in camera performance. If you want to do your own hands-on photo-finishing, then for best results, we recommend Sigma Photo Pro, the image-processing software designed exclusively for these X3F files. You may think that “RAW data processing” sounds like something scarily technical, requiring high levels of knowledge and skill. If so, just try Sigma Photo Pro for yourself, and you’ll soon find out how easy it really can be. Sigma Photo Pro offers only those functions you really need for artistic photo-finishing. Its interface is one of the most user-friendly and intuitive of the many RAW data-processing software packages on the market, so even if you’re a beginner, you’ll find it simple to turn your images into finished photos. Images can be corrected using just seven parameters — exposure, contrast, shadows, highlights, color saturation, sharpness and X3F Fill Light — all provided in the Adjustment Controls Palette, plus the Color Wheel for adjusting the colors. Simply adjust these parameters and watch the image change in real time. That’s all it takes to recreate the image you had in your mind’s eye as you pressed the shutter.

6. Design policy

The business of taking photos boils down to the skill of the photographer. The photograph is the canvas for the photographer’s individual self-expression. Sigma creates equipment for delving into the essence of photography. Sigma’s design policy is to empower the photographer to concentrate on the core task: taking pictures. Our top priority is to deliver the functionality and reliability this requires. In packing in extra features, we’ve been generous to a fault. We’ve designed the user interface to be user-friendly and intuitive, and we’ve ramped up the portability and durability. In other words, we’ve made sure the DP1 is easy to carry around, anytime, anywhere.

Conclusion?

Simple yet distinctive, its compact body will draw admiring glances. Packed into a neatly pocket-sized package, its DSLR-evel functionality is bound to amaze. And that’s not all. The DP1 does away with the old DSLR-versus-compact distinction that cramped photographers’ style more than they ever knew. It offers more artistic freedom, and new horizons in photographic expression, making them far more accessible than ever before. The camera that sets the gold standard for photos. The camera that sets the stage for the next generation of digital cameras.

That would be the DP1.

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