The new Sigma Dp Quattro – Cutting edge design meets Foveon.


The new Sigma Dp Quattro – Cutting edge design meets Foveon.

So most of you probably have already seen the new Sigma DP Quattro which came out of left field surprising many with the all original and oddball design. Yep, Sigma is taking their DP series to a new high with a new sensor, higher resolution, faster speeds and an all new body designed to be comfortable to shoot. From the looks of it I have to say that this may be the very 1st Sigma that I buy. I personally LOVE LOVE LOVE this design. It is all original, nothing like it. A+ for that. It looks sleek, slick, and serious. A+ for  that. It houses the amazing Sigma Foveon sensor which will render in a Medium Format kind of way (as we saw in the last series of cameras) with rich color and crazy detail while supplying nice dynamic range and tonality. A+ for that.

But what about the #1 thing that killed the last DP series? SPEED.


Well, thanks to a new processor Sigma says these new line of Quattro cameras are much faster which means if the AF is fast and the processing is fast then this will be ONE HELL of a camera for travel or anyone wanting high quality in a small nice form.

They are even offering an optical viewfinder for those that want the option.


If the speed is up, the quality is still there and the battery life is better then this camera will be mine, even if I use it twice a year because I find it beautiful and I love originality. I am sure will find it ugly but some will appreciate the design.

The 1st of the three new Quattro cameras will be released with a 20 MP Foveon X3 sensor, the new faster True III processor and a 30 f/2.8 lens attached. This will be the new DP2 Quattro. The DP1 will come in with a 19mm lens and the DP3 will come equipped with a 50mm lens. There is a new battery for this guy so I am guessing it will offer much better shooting time. I just hope the camera is made well and feels good.



No price or availability has been announced as of yet but I will keep you all informed as these will be reviewed right here. To see the last Sigma DP review click HERE.



  1. I’m sure it will have flaws but at least Sigma continue to be brave and put out products that Nikon and Canon in particular would never be brave enough to issue. If some of the issues with the previous DP Merrill models have been sorted then it should be amazing.

  2. The more I study the many photos of this camera, the more I admire its inspired design. The forwardly curved grip better enables a freer right index finger to navigate the top controls, and the “texturing” surrounding the rear controls as designed to cause greater stability for the right thumb as it roams and releases from those controls…I’m still a bit taken aback by its horizontal length-far too wide for my taste both in form and function. Was this the needed sacrifice for its thinness (depth), and /or for proper balance, or as it prompted mostly for perceived + aesthetics? I really would prefer it with the 75 eqiv. lens, but very concerned that the overall camera design/shape is least conducive to this mounted lens. Others’ input would be appreciated.

  3. Sometimes I have the impression that if the first four letters of the brand name would be “Leic” and the red dot in the spot of where it now says “dp2” (and everything else exactly the same) many would be gushing over the glorious yet daring minimalistic design, the brilliant innovative sensor, the remarkable ergonomics, the fixed sharp lens, and how reasonable the (likely four times higher) price is considering the IQ.

    But I doubt many would find it ugly. It’s different, that’s for sure. But does it matter if it’s ugly or gorgeous?

  4. I have changed my mind about it looking like a tire iron.
    It more looks like a cross between a shoe horn and an incense holder.

    It does look like Sigma got their inspiration from those 110 format film cameras from the 1970s.

  5. This is indeed an intriguing camera. And if Sigma has fixed the usability issues that plague the Merrills, it will be more than intriguing. The other big issue is the awful Sigma software that you are forced to use for raw conversions. That needs a major upgrade as well.

  6. Had intended on waiting for the Leica T (mirrorless), but after seeing and reading about this new Sigma DP I’ve changed my mind. Truly lovely design (but for the strap lugs which should have been recessed). I also hope that it’s well-made, and if it is, I’m a buyer, with the optical viewfinder. I’d probably opt for the DP3 version (50/75) but this one will protrude nearly an inch more and weigh more, so some concerns there. Hope all three are released in short order.

    • Reactions on this site seem to be about half and half for or against the look of the thing.

      Do you think you’d be capable of “owning” your esthetic tastes, by amending your phrase to:
      “_I_ find it, esthetically, the ugliest camera in history”?
      Or will you stick to insisting that your personal tastes are the final word on objective reality? :^D !! lol

      • I have not tried it! so I can only give an aesthetic judgment.

        I do not think so different from DP2s which I’ve had, and for me it was too slow. I hope for sigma that this is faster.

  7. In terms of pure IQ, nothing matches the DP2 at low ISO (I think!); well, I haven’t tried all cameras in the world – but really; if Sigma fixes speed and ISO this will be the best news for photography in 600 yeras! 🙂

  8. An intriguing design, clean lines and shape kind of remind me of the the Alpa 12 body and Blad’s landscape format camera. Being long and narrow, when pocketed, it will be above the pocket opening, so maybe easier to grab hold of. I also suspect, that as soon as Canon’s R&D comes good on it’s version of the Sigma’s sensor on their cameras, the ‘tune’ of many naysayer will strangely change …. because it’s made by Canon!

  9. I am flabbergasted at seeing the Quattro – is this the reason Sigma lowered the price of the Merrills to €399? I am much obliged since I got them all three very cheaply, but I simply cannot fathom what this is supposed to be.

    The Sigma DP Merrill line only needed two changes: an on/off switch (instead of that €#%!!! button) and the Nikon D4’s battery. Obviously a built in EVF, some sort of IS, a tiltable screen, and an old fashioned cable release would have been nice. What we get is a bigger battery. Unlike the previous generations the DP Merrills have almost perfect handling even with gloves on and with a fast card write times is no longer a problem.

    Although the Quattro is indeed beautiful it is bigger than the Merrills thereby negating one of the Merrill’s unique sales points. The other two significant ones being the sensor and the lens. And when Luigi makes a case for them it will be stunningly beautiful and like nothing before. But this is supposed to be a camera and not a fashion statement. Even Hassy would not make something like this. Okay, I am not sure about that.

    Based on the photos of the Quattro there is no place to put you hand without touching controls inadvertently. And how do you mount the neck strap without it constantly getting in the way? It simply is not constructed for people with ordinary hands. For E.T. perhaps… On the upside it probably comes back if you throw it like a boomerang…

    The resolution is only 2/3 of what the DP Merrill line gives. If this is Sigma’s way of going mainstream I really do not get it. It is like launching the Audi Quattro that took the rally world with storm only this time with Formula One tires. No traction off road and not enough speed on the track. Most (me included) people bought the cameras for the unique Foveon sensor in a small package. Unless Sigma has made huge strides in performance (I personally doubt it) there is no way this employed in the SD-body can sway people away from a D800, 5dmk3, E-M1, A7R or X-T1. And why should people buy this instead of a X100s or RX1R?

    As an owner of 5 (soon 6) Sigma digital cameras from the hugely frustrating DP1 to the unbelievably rewarding DP Merrills I really, really hope my take on this camera is wrong. And I promise to eat my porridge without complaining three days in a row if I am proved wrong. But I share Martin Hulbert’s notion: Where is the Merrill replacements?

    Of course Sigma did sell one more camera due to this announcement. Last night I bought an SD1 to take advantage of the high resolution Merrill sensor.


  10. A very silly shape. It will take up a lot of space in coat pockets or bags.

    And why it needs this huge cylindrical structure for the lens? The front lens diameter is just above 1cm and focusing is by moving a tiny lens group by linear motor rather than by manually operated screw thread.

    Most people, except studio and press photographers, spend more time carrying camera and gear than shooting with it.

  11. The raw file size is considerably smaller than the DP Merrill series which is 46mb and about 95mb as a Tiff. Is it possible this is just a replacement for the DP 1&2 series and a Quattro Merrill will come out later?

  12. It looks great, like a scanner from the set of a science fiction movie or something like that. Although I am not sure about the ergonomics and the balance of the body still I’d like to try someday a sigma Merrill, my favorites cameras are the ones with fixed lenses. Although in this model I would end adhering a mirror for non tiltable screens.

  13. Had a DP1 a long time ago. Might be tempted but only if price is right and if raw files can be opened in Lightroom. Come on Sigma, give us the choice.

    Not too sure about the pocketability of the camera by the way.

    • That’s the thing: pocketability.
      I “get” the unique design, there’s something cool about it; and it looks like it would be comfy enough to hold.
      But by being so irregular (and long), it also looks like it won’t be any easier to keep on you than many bigger cameras.

      I’m hoping they’ve figured out some way of making the sensor more viable when the light gets dim; I don’t have any justification for buying a daylight-only camera.

  14. Ah, on the forums it was the usual armchair “experts” screaming their heads off: “Roma locuta est, causa finata est”. I’m happy to see more intelligent articles and respondents here. Like the design or not (I think it’s original, clean, and somewhat daring) the sensor is likely to be superb, as are the optics. I’ve seen results of the previous generation that are absolutely stunning.

    I like Sigma. They have vision and courage. Bravo!

  15. I agree with tesilab, i would go for the 50mm and use it as a monochrom. As far as style is concerned, i’m sure it’ll be comfortable, the minimalistic look reminds me of the brand Braun they had a hifi line in the ’70/80’s. very well done sigma.

  16. This is going to be my second 2nd Sigma. I have never warmed up with the last the DP Merrill where almost anything is a step backwards from the original DP just for the insane megapixel count. It was even harder to get technically good images with the Merrill.

  17. Steve, I’m with you on the design. It’s hard to tell, but it *could* be comfortable to hold. As far as the design goes, one company makes some similarly nice looking cameras–Samsung. But I won’t touch a Samsung, since I don’t need to, so many more mainstream choices out there. But none of them have Foveon sensors.

    I might have to go to Sigma to get my “affordable” Monochrom camera, if no one else will step up to the plate and make one.

  18. Fugly camera from a company of relentless morons. Hopefully someone with some brains will take it over soon. Foveon sensor is special and has never been exploited to its fullest potential. Maybe they’ll try and sell this for $6,000.00 then change their minds, drop the price to $2000.00 and offer all the poor bastards that buy it some free McDonalds gift certificates. Or maybe they’ll just get sued by Audi. Funny though…I keep a DP2 in the back of my RS5 all the time.

    • I presume you are ready to correct their errors with a camera of your own. I would assume it would only take about 60 million dollars and a couple of weekends of your time away from your MacArthur grant work.

      • You should never ASSume for the obvious reasons. But, you may presume that if I was put in charge of that company the first thing I would do would be to fire them all. Top management would be given a Sigma branded Gen. MacArthur Edition Seppuku so that they could “do the right thing”. Marketing and middle management would just get a pill.

        Once the maintenance crew cleaned things up my crack team of photo-geniuses would design and manufacture a body for that wonderful sensor with some real IQ. We would even manage to make lenses that would focus with OUR cameras as well as with other brands.

        Our Marketing team would actually price the cameras to sell and release the models on time (rather than 2 years later). Imagine that. Now you can go back to cutting the grass.

          • Hey Ladies, why bitchin, when the facts are clear.
            Sigma Lenses have their common market qualities.
            Sigma Camera’s don’t.
            Sigma Foveon is used to it’s potential, as it’s beautiful in the narrow operating niche it allows, beyond that, it’s the worst performing sensor of all. Check the industrial sensor papers on their manufacturers site – same flaws, temperature, low light.
            Sales figures and Sigma themselves confirm it, but in the press they play the japanese smile game of perfection.

            To this new camera: It’s styled as no other. The ergo’s are unclear to me. The price unknown. The improvements unclear, too.

            Still, you can’t jump physics.
            Let it be faster, let it be less noise sensible.
            If it is as faster and de-noised as the DP2M compared with the DP2x and priced accordingly, it’ll be:
            – a pain in the ass slow AF/storing camera, still, while wonderfully useable between 50 and 800 ISO with instand heavy noise-banding above that, and being sold for 1500USD.

            I’d buy it if it where noise-banding free up until 2400ISO, fast as a X100S and sold for below 1000usd and using the DNG format out of camera. DNG is a container, thus Foveon-specific data should fit in there, too.

            Nothing beats the Fuji X-100/T1, unless Sony’s RX1/A7/R. Sigma won’t.

          • Say what you like, and leave about sigma…I have the 5d mk3 and leave it at home most times!…..Hey!, with my GR, and the three merrill’s, I’m happy as a pig in s..t

  19. yeah i’m totally into it! the dp merrill’s are going cheap right now and if i had a spare £400 (to buy a spare battery or two as well) i’s get the dp3 or maybe the dp2?! love this crazy idea of detail and field camera ergonomics. would love to see a client’s face if i whipped out this bad boy! then see their jaw drop when i sent the final files.

  20. An interesting design without discussion, remains to be seen if it is also practical and useful … just need to wait to find out what can this new generation Foveon sensors

  21. As an owner of the DP2 Merrill I’m really interested in seeing how this camera performs. Used within its limitations the DP2M produces the most beautiful images, near medium format at their best with amazing tonality and 3 dimensional pop. I personally like the DP2M images better than images from my M9 with Leica or Zeiss glass which themselves are unique and wonderful (photography is not a zero sum game). Not often mentioned is that b/w from foveon sensors are luscious due to the way they record luminance info.

    I’ll be curious to see if Sigma upgrades their Sigma Photo Pro software which is painfully slow, poorly designed and lacks features you would expect in this day and age. Sigma is claiming smaller file sizes which may back handedly speed up SPP. Otherwise one uses SPP to batch open Sigma files and save them as 16 bit TIFFS to open in another programme. Sigma mention that the RAW files on the new camera are 14 bit. Hopefully that matters. Like Steve I find the pics of the camera’s industrial design alluring.

  22. Very interesting/brave as is the quattro sensor (20MP top layer and 5Mp bottom layers – approx).
    Not sure about the ergos with that strap ring right where you place your hand. Hopefully it is not an issue. I am a big fan of Foveon since I had an SD14 and hope they have addressed the previous limitations.
    Also if the new sensor and processor are up to Speed an SD 1 MkII (this time at a sensible price!) would be interesting.

    • it used to be 1.7, until they introduced the Merrill, they are now 1.5.

      this camera looks amazing! i have owned several DPs and SDs (still have an SD15, for studio only), and the Foveon sensor is a killer. If this one is a little less quirky than the previous ones (and the files more manageable than the humongous ones from the M), this camera will be something else.

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