Experience the Sigma DP2 Merrill resolution 

To experience the Sigma DP2 Merrill resolution we photographed the same billboard with three different cameras. Updated with a picture of the Fuji X-Pro1 processed with Lightroom 4.4 and our sharpening scripts.

DP2 Merrill Version

Cameras and Lenses:

  • Sigma DP2 Merrill
  • Sony NEX-7 with Sigma 30mm f/2.8
  • Fuji X-Pro1 with 35mm f/1.4


  • Sigma DP2 Merrill: Raw conversion in Sigma Photo Pro and some final tuning in Lightroom 4 (no sharpening in Lightroom)
  • NEX-7: all in Lightroom 4
  • Fuji X-Pro 1: Fuji Raw Converter and some final tuning in Lightroom 4
  • Fuji X-Pro 1: Lightroom 4.4 and sharpening with Optimal Sharp V3 + Optimal Snap

Note: WB performed on Gray Card at the bottom

Here is the gallery with our results in color and B&W .

Note: Use "Show Details" to find the camera info. Size "O" will show the full sized images.

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Reader Comments (11)

Where I really see the differences are on the bottom edge where the frame meets the wood and the bottom right corner of the frame. Impressive performace from all, but the Sigma does look best.

09-27-2012 | Unregistered CommenterJohn Driggers

The Fuji and the Sony images look very similar. The Sigma has a completely different look - more contrast and detail IMHO. It's interesting that the Sony and the Sigma use a Sigma 30mm lens. I was wondering if the internal components of these two lenses are the same, so I looked up the specs. The Merrill has 9 blades and 8 elements in 6 groups. The Sigma lens for Sony has 7 blades and 7 elements in 5 groups. It appears that Sigma has reserved its best for its own camera!

09-30-2012 | Unregistered CommenterHuw Morgan

>It appears that Sigma has reserved its best for its own camera!

Certainly. Surprising is that the 30mm Sigma is one of the sharpest lenses for the NEX-7 though. The DP2M lens is excellent but the main difference we see is Bayer sensor versus Foveon.

09-30-2012 | Registered CommenterUwe Steinmueller

which one has truer color to the original object?

10-1-2012 | Unregistered CommenterDavid W.

>which one has truer color to the original object?

Hard to answer and not that important to me because we don't do reproductions. But we like the DP2M result reproducing the feel of this old weathered and dirty billboard.

10-2-2012 | Registered CommenterUwe Steinmueller

Huw, the Sigma lens has more elements because it needs more correction so that the lens can sit right on top of the sensor. Up until the correction elements at the end of the lens, the lens designs are very similar, although the DP2M's mtf is slightly better.

10-4-2012 | Unregistered CommenterGH

hello Uwe,

will You once reproduce this test with the new LR 4.4 or ACR 7.4 §editions", to get a real impression of the Foveon´s solution power? lloydf Chambers already posted this statement on his Blog on TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 26, 2013

As good as the dynamic range and color rendition of the Fuji X-Trans sensor is, I prefer the artifact-free razor sharpness of the Sigma DP Merrill cameras.

would be nice to now..


02-27-2013 | Unregistered Commentertom

Done :-)

02-27-2013 | Registered CommenterUwe Steinmueller

thx a lot, dear Uwe... i just took the time to compare the new Fuji pic with al the others... how would You comment the differences? i dont have a calibrated monitor on my notebook (1440 x 900, apple...); for me the biggest difference is the color appearance: much brighter and more vivid.., but in principal still a bit smeary compared to the merrill..

what pictures matches the original colors the best?


03-1-2013 | Unregistered Commentertom

>what pictures matches the original colors the best?

Likely none. Colors can be changed.

The detail with the DP2M cannot be matched with the Fuji. But the Fuji has lower noise, good colors and high ISO. I can live with the X-Pro1.

03-2-2013 | Registered CommenterUwe Steinmueller

Interesting comparison! There's not much to say about the output from the DP Merrill. It just looks freaking awesomely good. The little Sigma really shines for static objects. Unfortunately it sucks at pretty much everything else. Great camera for gear heads and pixel detectives, but not something I would like to carry with me on the streets or when making portraits. Looking at your photos I'd say he Sigma 30mm f/2.8 is a very good performer.

12-9-2013 | Unregistered CommenterSephiroth

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