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Why Sigma at all


New Member
I'm considering to buy the SD14 because of the Foveon X3 sensor and also because I currently have 5 AF Lenses I can use with this camera because I'm an SA5 user.

Also I think this outperforms the competition.

The only drawback is video noise as you go higher from ISO 100 onwards according to a review I read.



The chip certainly attracted me. I found Canon images very flat and I use Nikon at work but really fancied the opportunity of a system that replicated film. Haven't perfected it yet but I like the SD14 esp as it is a down to earth camera like we used to have in the old days!!! Shame there is no hyperfocal distance scale on the lenses!!!! :-((


I agree with that,in addition I wold like to see the independent dials for
aperture and shutter back, like the predecessors had.

Guest .

Hi James,

All right ... this answer comes late ... but ... you know ...

---- better late, than never ----:D

This forum has been very sleepy for a long time ... the problem simply is that a lot of people "knock the door", to find interesting news then notice, that there is not much to read, because nobody wrote anything ... kind of a vicious circle ... :rolleyes:

I would like to wake up this forum with interesting news, pictures, advice and so on. It is hard to find a start but I am very optimistic that this can work .... in fact I would like others to participate and post their questions, ideas, pictures and news.

I can say that I am quite a dedicated SIGMA-fan and that I would very much like to make English-speaking friends who share my hobby.:z04_photos:

See you with nice pictures


P.S.: I started up in 2005 with SIGMA ... most of my knowledge is from different German forums ... our German CI-SIGMA-Forum has become an incredible success ...:z04_bier01:

P.S.2: I think, Uwe is right ... I would like my SD9/10 shutter-dial back to my SD14, too:)


Well-Known Member
I know that the Sigma SD14 is not the worlds most popular DSLR, so when I found this web site, I did not expect it to be as active as others.

All cameras, whether analog or digital, have limitations. The important consideration is to determine if those limitations are obsticles to the type of photography you're doing. Plus, the camera's operation needs to provide the functionality and control that you're looking for. For me, the SD14 is just what I need.

Prior to my purchase, I contacted Foveon's technical support with questions about the performance of their imager and I also researched the theory and patents behind the technology.

I chose to go with the SD14 because of the Foveon imager and for the level of manual control provided by the SD14, along with the ability to shoot in infrared.

I recently purchased my SD14 along with a Sigma 28 mm F1.8 EX DG Aspherical Macro for my first lens. I chose the 28mm since the effective focal length becomes 47.6 mm and it's wide aperture.

I'm planning on also buying Sigma's 10 mm, 17 to 70 mm, and 70 to 300 mm lenses along with an Orion Apex 90mm Maksutov Cassegrain Telescope with a focal length of 1250 mm (2125 mm on the SD14) at f13.9. (I already have a SA Mount to T mount adapter) I will also be buying the optical components to assemble a T mount Pin Hole lens.


Hi Steaphany,
you really digged into it.
It will be interesting to see the results of your experiments here.
Good luck

Guest .

Hello Stephany and welcome to the forum.

Maybe that the SD14 is a bit exotic ... as everything becomes, which runs other than mainstream. :)

Many photographers you meet on the street even look bewildered at your cam .... "A SIGMA??!! ... I thougt they were making lenses?!"

Well, maybe that it is less modern than the brand leaders' products but you can do most brilliant pictures with the cam ... if you do not worry about some little things which are not all that important for image results.

See you with nice pictures



Well-Known Member
Hi Klaus . Great Question!

The reason I like Sigma cameras is that this cameras deliver an Image Quality that at times feels 3 Dimensional ,
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This quality is very subjective and it is not related to Pixel Count . There are now a new crop of over 20 MegaPixel cameras hitting the market , and they still cannot achieve this quality that is unique to the Foveon sensor in spite of its lower Pixel count.

This image for example , shot with the Sigma SD9 and a Leica 19mm f2.8 Elmarit ROM , not only shows that elusive 3D quality , but also shows Delicacy of tone in the Reds with plenty of detail in the highlights, which is a color that all other digital cameras have trouble with.


I have stayed with the SD9 in spite that I have owned the SD14 , because I feel that the absence of Microlenses on the SD9 takes more advantage of the High Sharpness and Resolving Power of the Leica-R lenses, for example this one shot with a Leica 100f2.8 Apo Macro Elmarit:


Here is my SD9 and Leica 100f2.8 Apo Macro Elmarit plus Apo 2X Extender:



Guest .

Hi Luis,

I can absolutely underline all of your above findings.
I would never sell my good old SD9 for its high class pixel-sharpness which really might be due to its Foveon TypI-Sensor and its lack of microlenses.
And yes ... image results are visibly 3-dimansional. Even NON-SIGMA-User noticed this effect with my Gallery-pictures in our German C-Info Gallery.


This is an SD9-macro-shot done with a simple SIGMA 24-70mm. I just turned it around, making use of a NON DESTRUCTIVE automatic RETRO-adapter, I made myself....

It is an amazing experience, that you can reach outstanding image quality using very old lenses with the SIGMAs.

This shot I did with a 30 years old VIVITAR 400mm T-Mount telephoto-lens on my SD10.

-Strauß-flüchtiger Blick-.jpg

Other "3D-like" SD9-shots

-Plattbauchlibelle- .jpg -Libelle2-.jpg

... which does not mean that SIGMA's SD14 cannot do it as well ... it can!

SD14 + SIGMA 80-400mm EX OS .. / Sd14 + SIGMA 28-80mm HF Macro

-Straußenportrait2-.JPG -Kröte1-.JPG

See you with nice pictures



Well-Known Member
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Very nice images Klaus . Can you imagine what your dedication could do with a Leica lens in your SD9?

I have never offered a mount replacement kit for the SD9 , (The one for the SD14 will not fit the SD9 ) but I am considering making a few ones to explore the interest of the numerous SD9 owners that feel like you and me , that there was a loss of Image Quality with the introduction of microlenses.

What do you think ? What does everybody think about this . ?

Also , when the SD14 really go down in price I will attempt to remove the Microlenses and install the infrared filter right at the sensor , like the SD9 does.

I would like everybody that has an interest in these ideas to either post here or send me an email

Thanks .Luis

Guest .

... it's me again .... :)

Finally, even the frequently badmouthed POLAROID X530 can produce the SIGMA-effect employing a FOVEON-image sensor.

-Schmetterling- 1.jpg -Goldkäfer-.jpg

We also have very nice DP1- 3D-shots in our gallery ... unfortunately, I do not own one!

Be it, that A SIGMA is less modern, slower and much more difficult to handle ... it definately can do brilliant pictures with the most vivid colours I can imagine.

SD10 / SIGMA 18-200mm DC

-einfach nett...-.jpg

SD14 / SIGMA 80-400mm EX OS (@400mm)

-guckst Du-.jpg

Colours ... I say! ;)

-Seerosenteich2-.JPG -Seerosenteich3-.JPG

See you with nice pictures



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I find this idea interesting. Let's open a specific therad for this, so that it does not loose focus. Wait a minute. I will copy this in a new thread just for this...

Best wishes


ok, I made a new thread for this idea. Please all discussions about Sigma SD9 modifications there:

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Don Park

New Member
Viewfinder magnifier available for SD15?

I am seeing a viewfinder magnifier attached to Luis Sigma camera. Can you share info about it, product name, brand, evaluation, etc.?


Well-Known Member
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If you are referring to my personal SD9 , as shown in this image:


It does have a special eye piece that I Custom made using a Canon camera eye piece with the Rubber piece replaced by one from a Movie Camera . Digital SLR light meters are very sensitive to stray light entering through the eye piece. The rubber piece extends out significantly fitting nugly against my face and around my eye providing a much better view and accurate metering.

I have also used the Mamiya and Canon Flip up Magnifying eye pieces but they are not comfortable to my Hand held shooting style. For Tripod mounted close up or Macro I use a Leica Upright viewfinder that has two levels of Magnification . One for Composing (1X) and One for Fine Focus ( 2X). This requires filing the SD9 eye piece frame to reduce its thickness .:

Picture 2.jpg

Some of the eye shades made in china will fit the SD9 .


Please no excessive link advertising in postings. the moderator.

Don Park

New Member
Yes, custom-made eye piece

I have a little bit of focusing problem. I have to use SD15-built-in diopter compensation dial instead of wearing concave glasses whenever I take pictures as that's cumbersome. Although not all of the pictures taken were not in sharp focus, I have been wondering whether I should wear glasses. The eye piece is not a commercial product, so that's not a solution for crisp focusing. Thanks.


Well-Known Member
This is something I found for my SD14 a while back...before you do this however you need to look at this link...
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"The article is for D70 but most of it applies to SD14 as well.
For SD14, you'll need a 1.5mm hex wrench (rather than 2mm mentioned in the article). The procedure is not difficult but it takes a lot of time and patience.

The basic mirror box structure of SD14 is the same as D70 Image control:Zoom outZoom 100%Zoom inExpand AllOpen in new window


What you'll need to do is to first calibrate manual focus by turning knob 2. If you have back focus problem, then rotate the knob CLOCKWISE bit by bit, checking the focus each time and taking note if it. If over-adjusted (i.e. start having front focus), then turn it back a little. You may have to repeat many times, putting on and taking off the lens and IR filter, and loading the pictures into your PC to check the focus. I suggest you take at least 5 shots each time to reduce chance of error. Once you're happy with the MF accuracy, then do the same with knob 1 to calibrate AF. Again you turn it CLOCKWISE if AF is back focusing. Also, when verifying AF, take a few shots with the lens starting from the nearest focusing distance and another few starting from infinity. This is because I found that the AF motor may occasionally 'overshoot' or 'undershoot' a little, causing very slight ff/bw depending on where it start focusing from, and confusing the results.

I used the focus test chart from this site:
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I've gone through this twice on my SD14. The first time was done in a hurry (for about an hour) so it not wasn't very precise but acceptable. I did it again last night for a few hours to get better precision. I only calibrated my 30/1.4 (which is my walk-around) and after that both my 70/2.8 and 10-20 became accurate. My guess is that if the mirrors were not properly aligned, different lenses may exhibit different degrees of bf/ff problems making it confusing. Lenses are engineered with very precise registration distance and the manufacturing tolerance shouldn't be as big compared to the mirror box structure (which contains manually adjustable parts such as those knobs).
Note that the sensor/filter may get a lot dust during the lengthy process so expect some cleaning work to do afterwards.
Regards, Joseph Lam (April 5th 2008 -"

I have used this procedure twice now to fix both AF and MF focuses on two of my SD14' is a slight adjustment...Now I would think that this setup would work with the SD15 as well...if it does would you let us know...

The only other idea that I have is to contact
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to see if they could make you a MF focusing screen for your SD15....I'm gona call them today for my SD14....and see what they say...will let you know...

Tony C. :z04_cowboy:


firstly because they are cheap, i bought a mint sigma sd9 at 700 shutter count with power grip around $250, where a new canon 450d costs $800-$900, turkey.

Sd9 is heavy, i kinda like it since i got used to my zenit and new entry level paper dslr's suffer a lot from my hand shake.

It produces pixel-sharp photos, and pixel level grain reminds me my negative scans.

But i'm also not comfortable with the low effective iso problem, and skin tones cause much trouble to me.

It's big, with power grip and ef 500 st dg flash, you look like a professional photographer, when you try to shoot people at parties, they do not try to avoid you, in the contract, they mostly give poses to you and ask "where can i get these photos?" after you shoot. :p


New Member
Well, a friend of mine told me about Foveon sensor a couple of years ago; I had been happy with my canons till that time, but it is like you say wow about a fiat 500 Abarth, until you have driven a Ferrari: just another world.
Shots are 3d, naturally crisp, without additive sharpening and the camera has not lots of unuseful settings and controls, simple and efficient like and old reflex from '80s.
I started with an SD14 and have abandoned all other cameras: also bought an SD10 and a DP2s, plus some lenses. Really satisfied, I surely will not go back to bayer.