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SD-14 Taking Only Back Photos

leegold

Member
I have an SD-14. Bought new w/lens around 2008. Now any picture I take is all black, so somethings wrong, I need a repair for the camera. I have some questions:

Would anyone know what the fix is? Could I fix it myself?

Sigma USA said the "service life" for the SD-14 is over and they will not repair it. Does anyone know of a pro repair service for Sigma?

Coming from the era of Nikons and Leicas film cameras my experience with digital cameras has been difficult for me. But the Sigma when it worked had nice colors...

Thanks.
 

dirk

CI-Founder
Hi Leegold,

unfortunately, I do not know any address to repair it. But looking at the ebay prices for the SD14, it is a better deal to buy another one second hand than to repair it. This will be definetly cheaper.

I also would recommend you the SD15 instead of the SD14. Much better camera regarding IQ and colours and better usability with more buttons.

But if you want to have a large step forward in IQ, you should definitely buy a Sigma Merrill camera. Outstanding IQ. Not surpassed by the models afterwards. For hiking I would recommend the small DP1M, DP2M and DP3M. Cheaper than an SD1 Merrill and outstanding lenses build in at a fraction of the price of teh Sigma Art lenses. Also size and weight is A LOT better :)

Best wishes
 

nathlas

New Member
Would you prefer newest SD quattro H or SD1 merill for use with a serie of sigma SA lenses I still own since the SD14 era ?
 

dirk

CI-Founder
Hi Nathlas,

I do think that Sigma made a mistake with the Quattro sensors. The Merrill sensors were the last generation of Foveon sensors which followed the principle by its founder. With Quattro sensors Sigma tried to achieve better high-ISO at the expense of the true Foveon image quality. In my view, the best image quality is still achieved only with the Merrill sensors.

Of course everyone has a different taste and different priorities. But I will not invest in the quattro or later sensor designs, if that means to go one step back from the IQ of the Merrill sensor. In that case I would rather use a Nikon D810 or D850.
 

afshalders

Active Member
Maybe just take a look at the second hand market and buy another sd14 or sd15. They are pretty cheap now.

I still have my SD15 and It's the best Sigma camera if you plan to use old manual focus lenses.
With thde SD1 Merrill, I get some very strange gradient-like color casts with non Sigma lenses.
 

dirk

CI-Founder
The problem is, that once you experienced the Merrill sensor, it is hard to go back to a SD15. The SD15 is still a great camera, but the Merrill sensor is just one level higher. If you use the compact cameras DP1 Merrill, DP2 Merrill and DP3 Merrill, you have both, the Merrill sensor and really excellent lenses which are optimized for that sensor.

The only downside is, that you do not have a viewfinder and the LCD screen on the DPMs is really bad in sunlight.

But still, it is almost medium format quality plus the 3D effect of the Foveon sensor plus the lens quality of the best Sigma "Art" philisophy all in a pocket size camera for only a few bucks...
 

afshalders

Active Member
Dirk,

Yes and no. I changed some long e-mail with Sigma support (personal thanks to Mr. Ebi) about some strange things I found on the SD1 Merrill.
For example, Merrill sensors are much less forgiving to exposure errors than the previous ones. This is a well known fact. It's very easy to saturate the red channel and get very strange looking reds, magentas, oranges and even yellows. Mr. Ebi told me that exposure must be dead on on Merrills and one way to fix this is to set the exposure compensation to somethinng like -1 and then recover on post processing, specially with X3F fill light. Indeed it works, but it's annoying. Funny is this happens more with the SD1 and almost never with the DP2M.

The previous generation is much less prone to this. Mr. Eby told me the Quattros are also less sensitive to this problem.

The second "problem" with the SD1 is that it heavily relies on software corrections to obtain a cast-free image. Try to fit any M42 lens to a SD1, specially wide angles, and see the results. They usually looks very bizarre. This not happens with pre Merrills.

And the "3D" effect is much more due a very high sharpness than with being Merrill, Quattro or "Legacy" Foveon sensors. I have some very impressive "3D" looking images done with a SD15 and a custom modified Leica Vario Elmar 35-70 F4 Macro, one of the sharpest lenses I've ever used.

For me, the DP2M is the perfect Foveon Camera (besides the murky LCD)
 
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