Sigma SD9 Design and Specification Review

Foveon triggered quite a mix back on the Eleventh Feb this season when they declared their innovative new X3 indicator. On the same day Sigma declared that the SD9 would be the first digicam to it is indicator, of course it would also be the first digicam created by Sigma. In time for that statement we had the first unique hands-on with an X3 indicator released in this post. The statement by Foveon and Sigma was the discuss of PMA 2002 and it’s reasonable to say that the display was taken over by discuss of X3 and the guarantee it could carry.

Sigma SD9 Review
Sigma SD9 Review

Since that statement there has been a visible time interval of quiet from both Foveon and Sigma which finished just before Photokina when they exposed the relatively low $1799 retail cost for our bodies. During Photokina we got our first flavor of a pre-production SD9 and were able to write some of the first example pictures from the electronic camera.

Sigma SD9 Body And Design

The SD9 has a relatively traditional SLR design with may mix of digital manages and the frequent photography. The human is carried out in a high-impact nasty, under this skin is a metallic substructure. The side hold and a small part of back of the digital camera are covered in difficult rubberized. The width of the digital camera and the side hold creates it experience large and a little bit boxy, although not unpleasant to hold or use. Control structure is excellent and clear and understandable, you can get to utilize the SD9 quite quickly.

Sigma SD9 Body And Design
Sigma SD9 Body And Design

The digital camera has very similar measurements to the Cannon EOS-D30/D60 apart from in size where the SD9 is 13 mm (0.5 in) higher, this mainly due to the AA battery pack container. Bodyweight sensible the SD9 concerns 50 g less heavy without battery pack power or lens, but a little bit bulkier once packed with its four AA battery pack power (the D30/D60 use a compact sized, less heavy Lithium-Ion).

Size and Weight

As you can see from the desk below the SD9 is greater than both the Nikon D100, Fujifilm S2 Pro and Cannon EOS-D30/D60, also don’t be fooled by the load detailed below, the SD9 is bulkier than the D60 once you’ve packed it up with its range of battery pack power. Its dimension helps make the SD9 experience greater than the D100, S2 Pro or D30/D60 but actually this is never an efficient issue.

Side by side

Here is the SD9 beside Nikon’s D100. As you can see the D100 does make the SD9 seem big, both digital cameras here with the producers 50 mm lens (although the Nikon is the F1.4, the Sigma F2.8 Macro). Despite the way it looks in the picture below you won’t be able to tell once you start capturing.

Rear LCD Display

The SD9’s 1.8″ observe is shiny and specific, it seems to be one-up on the frequent 1.8″ LCD as this particular device has 130,000 p. The screen is shiny enough to see outside although an anti-reflective covering would have assisted in sunshine. Also offered with the digital camera is the clip-on formed LCD guard proven below. Once on it includes all of the LCD control buttons except remove which is left available for removing pictures in history evaluation method.

Sigma SD9 Review
Sigma SD9 Review

Sigma SD9 Specififcations

Type Digital SLR (lens interchangeable)
Body material High-impact plastic / rubber (metal substructure)
Price US – $1,799 (Body only, no lens) [check /order]
UK – £1,299 (Body only, no lens, inc VAT) [check /order]
Sensor  • Foveon X3 Pro 10M CMOS Image Sensor
• 20.7 x 13.8 mm
Photodetectors 10.3 million (2268 x 1512 x 3)
Total pixel locations 2304 x 1536
Effective pixel locations 2268 x 1512
Pixel pitch 9.12 µm x 9.12 µm
Analog to digital converter 12-bits per photo detector (36 bits per pixel location)
Optical filter None
Microlenses None
Sensitivity  • ISO 100
• ISO 200
• ISO 400
Image sizes  • 2268 x 1512 (HI)
• 1512 x 1008 (MED)
• 1134 x 756 (LOW)
* Can output a double-size 4536 x 3024 from Photo Pro software
Image formats Foveon X3 lossless compressed RAW (.X3F)
Color space Captures RAW data, Photo Pro software outputs to sRGB, Apple RGB, Adobe RGB,ColorMatch RGB
Lens mount Sigma SA mount
Field of view crop 1.7x (also known as focal length multiplier)
Autofocus TTL phase detection
AF Illuminator None
Focus area One
Lens servo  • Single Servo AF (S)
• Continuous Servo AF (C)
Focus lock Half-press of shutter release
Metering  • 8-segment Evaluative
• Center
• Center-Weighted Average
Metering range 1 – 20 EV (with 50 mm F1.4 @ ISO 100)
Exposure mode  • (P) Program AE
• (A) Aperture-Priority Auto
• (S) Shutter-Priority Auto
• (M) Manual
Exposure compensation +/-3 EV in 0.5 EV steps
AE Lock Dedicated AEL button
AE Bracketing  • Three images
• Compensation steps: 0.5, 1.0, 1.5, 2.0, 2.5, 3.0 EV
Shutter type  • Vertical travel metal focal plane shutter
• Electronically controlled through entire speed range
Shutter speed  • ISO 100: 15 – 1/6000 sec
• ISO 200: 1 – 1/6000 sec
• ISO 400: 1 – 1/6000 sec
Depth-of-field preview Button, stops-down lens aperture
X-Sync shutter speed Up to 1/180 sec
Shooting modes  • Single frame
• Continuous shooting
• Self-timer 10 sec
• Self-timer 2 sec
Continuous mode  • 2268 x 1512: 1.9 fps for 6 frames
• 1512 x 1008: 2.2 fps for 14 frames
• 1134 x 756: 2.7 fps for 30 frames
White balance  • Auto
• Sunlight (~5400 K)
• Shade (~8000 K)
• Overcast (~6000 K)
• Incandescent (~3150 K)
• Fluorescent (~4100 K)
• Flash (~5850 K)
• Custom
* As the SD9 shoots RAW white balance can be modified later in
the Photo Pro software
White balance bracketing No
Sync contact Hot-shoe, X-contact only (also has dedicated Sigma link contact)
Flash control  • STTL automatic flash exposure
• Only: Sigma EF-500 DG Super SA, EF-500 DG ST SA flash units
Built-in flash None
Viewfinder Pentaprism SLR viewfinder
Viewfinder eyepoint 18 mm
Viewfinder frame coverage 98% horizontal, 97% vertical
Viewfinder magnification 0.77 x (50 mm F1.4 at Infinity)
Viewfinder information Flash indicator, Focus indicator, Shutter speed, AEL indicator, Aperture, Auto Bracket indicator, Exposure compensation
Viewfinder diopter adjustment -3 dpt to +1 dpt
Focusing screen Sports finder (area outside sensor coverage is shown darker)
Focusing screen information  • Auto Focus frame
• Center Area Metering
Storage CompactFlash Type I/II
Microdrive compatible Yes
LCD monitor 1.8″ 130,000 pixel TFT (100% frame coverage)
Playback functions  • Single image full screen
• Magnified (full screen or histogram)
• Histogram (thumbnail, histogram, exposure info)
• Thumbnail (9 images)
• Slide Show
Record preview  • Off
• 2, 5 or 10 secs
• Hold
• Single image / Info (inc. Histogram)
Menu languages  • English
• Japanese
• German
• French
Video output NTSC or PAL selectable
Connectivity  • Firewire (IEEE 1394)
• USB 1.1
Power  • Camera battery: 2 x Lithium CR-123A (non-rechargeable)
• Digital battery: 2 x Lithium CR-V3 (non-rechargeable)
or 4 x AA batteries (NiMH recommended)
Dimensions 152 x 120 x 79 mm (6.0 x 4.7 x 3.1 in)
Weight (no battery) 805 g (1.8 lb)
Included Software Sigma Photo Pro (Workflow / RAW conversion)
Photo Pro image adjustments  • White Balance (stored in X3F file)
• Exposure (EV compensation +/- 2.0 in 0.1 EV steps)
• Contrast (+/-2.0 in 0.1 steps)
• Shadow (+/-2.0 in 0.1 steps)
• Highlight (+/-2.0 in 0.1 steps)
• Saturation (+/-2.0 in 0.1 steps)
• Sharpness (+/-2.0 in 0.1 steps)
• Color Balance (CMY adjustment wheel)
Photo Pro output  • Images: All, Marked, Selected
• Format: TIFF (8 or 16-bit), JPEG (EXIF / JFIF – 12 levels)
• Size: Same size, Double size, Half size
• Color space: sRGB, Apple RGB, Adobe RGB, ColorMatch RGB
• Adjustment: Default, Auto, Custom (previously saved settings)
Photo Pro misc  • Can transfer images directly from camera
• Image rotation
• Loupe magnification
• Monitor gamma verification
• Mark / Lock
• Image info
• Live adjustment
• Over / Under exposure warning indication