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Author Topic: Fuji X-Trans vs. Sigma DP Merrill anyone?  (Read 4909 times)
G*
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« on: March 18, 2014, 06:26:06 AM »
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Dear all,

is there somebody out there in the happy position to provide a direct comparison between between files from a Fujifilm X-Trans sensor and a Sigma DP Merrill? In a severe case of GAS I’m pondering buying a DP1/DP2 Merrill or a Fujifilm X-E1. Both are quite a bargain right now and I would really like to try a non-Bayer CFA camera …

Thanks a lot!
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Christoph C. Feldhaim
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« Reply #1 on: March 18, 2014, 06:38:15 AM »
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Totally different beasts.

Sigma is resolution king, Fuji more an unusual multi purpose sensor living inside a growing and interesting system.
You can get great images from both with strengths in different use cases.
If you want to burn money you can use matches and a bill.

Cheers
~Chris
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Manoli
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« Reply #2 on: March 18, 2014, 07:06:25 AM »
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Whichever one you choose, get Iridient Developer for sheer quality.
What usage - landscape, humans , colour, b&w ?
Do you have glass that you can use via an adapter on the fuji?

The Sigma is a brick, not versatile, plastic but under limited situations can produce exceptional files. The Fuji - I've got both (actually all three, DP3 too) - think Leica gestalt but with autofocus, if you want it, plus live view and focus peaking. I still use the X-E1 and, unless you need wi-fi, gives away little to it's newer sibling. Don't underestimate the versatility of using existing lenses on the aps-c sensor.

IMO, if you're doing landscape and still-life probably the Sigma - for the rest Fuji.
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G*
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« Reply #3 on: March 18, 2014, 08:31:21 AM »
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I am aware that these cameras have not a lot in common in terms of what situations would put their strengths forward.

I like the smoothness of the high-ISO images I saw from the Fuji and I like the low-ISO acuity from the Sigmas. I prefer an EVF (Fuji) in most situations, but could also do with a fixed screen on the back only (Sigma). I would surely use some legacy glass on the Fuji, too, but I also like the idea of a fixed lens/sensor team. A reliable autofocus system would be appreciated, and also focus peeking for manual lenses would be great. All this is true – but not really important since I have my Nikons for all those situations.

What I’m looking for is a whole different "look", a different rendition of colors, micro-contrast, noise, dynamic range. I would like to see how rich greens in landscape pics differ between the two sensors, how skin-tones are rendered, and maybe how they deal with the spectrum of incandescent light sources … Maybe I just wish to discover something new, something exciting.
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Jim Pascoe
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« Reply #4 on: March 18, 2014, 09:08:38 AM »
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To be honest I think you just need to buy one, or both, and experiment.  By the sound of your question you are looking for something quite esoteric and what you photograph is going to have much more impact on the final image than which of these two cameras you buy.  All that said, no camera is the perfect all-rounder, so I would go for the one that you enjoy handling and using the most.  But for that you need to use them extensively first.

Jim
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Michael N. Meyer
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« Reply #5 on: March 18, 2014, 10:52:25 AM »
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I haven't used the Sigma, but have and use the Fuji X-Pro1 (which has the same sensor as the X-E1). If you were looking for smaller, lighter and easier to pack then the X-E1 would make sense. For a different "look" or a splash of excitement I doubt it would fit the bill.

I don't think of the X-Pro1 as having a significantly different "look" to any of the DSLRs I've used. It is great at high ISO and handles low, mixed and incandescent lighting well. My anecdotal opinion is that it's files don't hold up as well as my Sony a850's for distant subjects at base ISO and that portraits in good light at base ISO are nicer from the a850. The X-Pro1 because of it's high ISO qualities and handling of mixed light makes it more versatile for me than the a850 in many ways (it is also smaller and lighter, which I like). In controlled situations with good light at base ISO the full frame a850 is absolutely better--and it has IBIS.

The Fuji I might look at in your position is the original x100. I love mine. Its lens and sensor are incredibly well matched; it put out wonderful files at all ISOs; and, it is small, light, versatile and has a leaf shutter. I would be hard pressed to say it gives a special "look", but it certainly does make nice pictures in a small package.
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powerslave12r
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« Reply #6 on: March 18, 2014, 12:11:41 PM »
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One sided opinion, but Sigma RAW files will give you something to play with ALL day if you so wish.

The same may be true of Fuji RAW as well, but I couldn't comment. Best bet is to download both RAW files and compare.

http://www.photographyblog.com/reviews/sigma_dp2_merrill_review/sample_images/

http://www.photographyblog.com/reviews/fujifilm_x_e1_review/sample_images/
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XE11
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« Reply #7 on: March 19, 2014, 01:28:51 PM »
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im actually in the middle of switching from fuji to sigma. (I'm selling XE1, already bought DP2m and DP3m)

for street photograph, fuji wins with speed and interface. the feel-good factor fill you with confidence to make a even better shot.

but for ultimate image quality, i would pick sigma every time.

fuji is good if you havent play with MF or sigma's DPm series.... but once you tried, you will probably end up like me  Grin

fuji feels "xxxx yeah!" when you shoot, but sigma feels "xxxx yeah!" once you see the result on the computer....after you missed a million shots.

sigma photo developing software got some way to go, but i can live with that.
 
and of course, sigma battery makes you feel like film days... you really need to think VERY HARD before you even turn it on. i only managed to get 16 shots out of one battery on my first day with he DP3m....
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G*
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« Reply #8 on: March 19, 2014, 02:32:25 PM »
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Thanks for all the replies so far!
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allegretto
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« Reply #9 on: April 15, 2014, 09:01:53 PM »
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have had both… where to begin…?

Fuji is a system, full range ISO and visibility. Merrills dictate how you will photograph.

On image detail Merrill is in another league, color… not so much. Takes a lot of tinkering to get it looking natural, though perhaps natural is not what you're looking for. Subjectively I felt there was a "copper-y" look to all the files. But their detail is amazing

Fuji is much more natural skin tones and has it's own idiosyncratic renditions. but overall more natural. However detail is no Merrill

These two are so different that one does not overlap the other very much, in image or function

guess you just have to buy both gently used and eBay the loser. They are both great in their own right, but limited too

these are just my eye and my opinion and not meant to contradict anyone else.
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Deardorff
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« Reply #10 on: April 16, 2014, 11:09:38 PM »
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In shooting with the Fuji X-E1 and X-Pro 1 you have the option of shooting Infrared if you want.
The 14mm and 35mm shoot without a hot spot using the Hoya R72 filter. The 18-55 has a hot spot that ruins the image.

Friends tell me more of the prime lenses can shoot IR without a hotspot.

So, if you want IR where you can see and focus either on the back or using the eye level finder(both optical and electronic - depending on the model) the Fuji X bodies are a good way to go. Saves having to convert another camera just for IR work.

Still want to try the Merrills for a few images one of these days.
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soboyle
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« Reply #11 on: April 24, 2014, 10:19:13 AM »
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I have both, and there is not a lot of overlap in their usage.
I love the Fuji for a carry around all purpose camera, set on auto iso to capture whatever comes my way. Especially with the superb 23 1.4 on my X-E2.
The DP2M never leaves iso 100 or a tripod. For that type of shooting it excels. It blows away the detail rendering of the Fuji, which has always been a bit strange, especially for foliage and fine details like tree branches.
The DP renders these details as sharp as a razor.
But there really is no point to the resolution if all you want to do is downsize for web presentation, this is a camera made for making large prints. For that, it's worth the extra effort of shooting and processing. I see the DP's as an addition to a system, not an alternative.
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hexx
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« Reply #12 on: April 30, 2014, 08:40:59 AM »
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Dear all,

is there somebody out there in the happy position to provide a direct comparison between between files from a Fujifilm X-Trans sensor and a Sigma DP Merrill? In a severe case of GAS I’m pondering buying a DP1/DP2 Merrill or a Fujifilm X-E1. Both are quite a bargain right now and I would really like to try a non-Bayer CFA camera …

Thanks a lot!

No contest, no comparison. I have and use both. X-Pro1 is any light camera thanks to great performance in low light. DP2M is a high resolution monster in good light (I never use it above ISO400 for colour and ISO1600 for B&W).

Two different cameras, two different uses. They compliment each other but they don't directly compete. There's nothing on the market in APS-C that can touch output from Foveon based cameras - nothing (and to my eyes it beats output from D800 - but I only compared once with friend's D800).

For Sigma, stick to Sigma Photo Pro software, I'm getting better results than from Iridient Developer. For Fuji I use Capture One.
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xpatUSA
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« Reply #13 on: May 24, 2014, 07:27:25 PM »
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For Sigma, stick to Sigma Photo Pro software, I'm getting better results than from Iridient Developer. For Fuji I use Capture One.

Is Iridient Developer Macintosh-only?

cheers,
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best regards,

Ted
xocet
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« Reply #14 on: May 25, 2014, 04:07:10 AM »
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Is Iridient Developer Macintosh-only?

cheers,

Yes.
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