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Thread: Contemplating a Quattro purchase....

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    Senior Member bensonga's Avatar
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    Contemplating a Quattro purchase....

    I've read many of the comments here and on other websites about the Sigma Quattros vs the Merrills, both pros and cons. I'll admit that I'm still confused re whether the Quattros have that Foveon "magic" (micro-contrast etc) which set the Merrills apart from the crowded field of other digital cameras.

    I have all three DP Merrills. I love the images and I am not at all bothered by their well known operational quirks.

    Recently, I have been tempted to get a Quattro (probably the DP2Q, since I use my DP2M most often). The current $300 price reduction has prompted me to seriously consider it again.

    For those of you who have owned/used both the Merrill and Quattro, what is your current view? I have no desire to part with my Merrills, just wondering if it is worth adding a Quattro to my camera bag. I primarily use the Merrills for shooting landscapes etc and I like to make prints that are 13x19 or 17x22.

    Gary Benson
    Eagle River, Alaska

    Death Valley National Park, Mesquite Dunes and Panamint Mountains, DP2M
    Last edited by bensonga; 29th January 2016 at 16:54.
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    Senior Member Malina DZ's Avatar
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    Re: Contemplating a Quattro purchase....

    Gary, I have no personal experience with DP Q cameras, but the review below might be useful if you haven't read it already:
    https://outlivingblog.wordpress.com/...-with-merrill/
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    Member octagone's Avatar
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    Re: Contemplating a Quattro purchase....

    If it will interest you, I interpolation tests Mpix 39, from photos (raw) had sent me as a member of dpreview forum (I do not have yet quattro).
    I did several tests, including the following for me the best results. Dp2q.
    Crop 100 - 39Mpix.
    [IMG]Crop-39Mpix-04 by NoŽl Billy, sur Flickr[/IMG]

    [IMG]Crop-39Mpix-03 by NoŽl Billy, sur Flickr[/IMG]

    [IMG]Crop-39Mpix-02 by NoŽl Billy, sur Flickr[/IMG]

    [IMG]Crop-39Mpix-01 by NoŽl Billy, sur Flickr[/IMG]

    Full size:
    [IMG]DP2Q1148-39Mpix-RT-Lanczos-Accentuťe RT-Bis by NoŽl Billy, sur Flickr[/IMG]


    Another picture - 39Mpix:
    Crop 100:
    [IMG]Crop-39Mpix-05 by NoŽl Billy, sur Flickr[/IMG]

    [IMG]Crop-39Mpix-06 by NoŽl Billy, sur Flickr[/IMG]

    [IMG]Crop-39Mpix-07 by NoŽl Billy, sur Flickr[/IMG]

    [IMG]Crop-39Mpix-08 by NoŽl Billy, sur Flickr[/IMG]

    Full Size:
    [IMG]DP2Q1299-39Mpix-RT-Lanczos-accentuťe RT by NoŽl Billy, sur Flickr[/IMG]


    Another in 800iso - 39Mpix- dp3q. Photo made during a photo show in Paris.
    Full Size.
    [IMG]SDIM0455-iso800-RT-Bicubic-39Mpix-Bis by NoŽl Billy, sur Flickr[/IMG]

    I did these tests 39Mpix in because I like to have a camera allowing me to make prints in very large formats.

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    Re: Contemplating a Quattro purchase....

    dont get it, what means 39 Mpix?

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    Member octagone's Avatar
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    Re: Contemplating a Quattro purchase....

    Quote Originally Posted by foveon View Post
    dont get it, what means 39 Mpix?
    They are open raw SPP. sharpness -2. Luminance NR 0. Portrait mode. Saved in native resolution.
    Then interpolated 39Mpix with RawTherapee - Lanczos.
    RawTherapee accentuated.

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    Senior Member biglouis's Avatar
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    Re: Contemplating a Quattro purchase....

    You face the problem we all face as Sigma aficionados.

    Sigma actually listened to our need. We all said we wanted a DP with a 21mm equivalent field of view.

    The problem is they have delivered it in a package which makes the Merrills seem downright normal (which is not something you could ever say about a Merrill).

    I had one of the first DP0Qs used it for about 2 weeks and sent it back. I'm glad I did in one sense because it meant my expenditure on other camera items could be justified.

    However, like all Sigma owners we hurt for a wide angle solution.

    The prices are now dropping fast as I doubt if there are fewer than 10s or maybe a few hundred possible purchasers in Europe, let alone the rest of the world so I suspect there are a lot in warehouses waiting to be shifted. Here in the UK you can now order one from Park Cameras for GBP 699 including the LVF-01 viewfinder. This is a package that I paid 999 for back in August, i.e a 30% drop.

    I too am tempted by the new price but I also have to factor in getting Lee filters in the 100mm size in order to cope with the bizarre highlight issues with the sensor. Also, my experience is that you do not get Merrill colours. You get Merrill-like colours but to my mind there is something 'missing' but I can't quite put my finger on it.

    I'm probably going to breakdown and get another DP0Q if the prices drop any lower (remember how the Merrills were eventually going for GBP 200-300? Although believe it or else the DP3M is beginning to command a premium on ebay, as people realise this is an unequalled small zoom capable of MF type performance).

    That my experience. I genuinely hope I don't put you off. There are some very good examples in the thread here of people getting the best out of the camera. I didnn't but you might.

    Just my two cents

    LouisB

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    Senior Member Tim's Avatar
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    Re: Contemplating a Quattro purchase....

    Quote Originally Posted by biglouis View Post
    Although believe it or else the DP3M is beginning to command a premium on ebay, as people realise this is an unequalled small zoom capable of MF type performance).

    LouisB
    I can back this up buy mentioning that I sold my DP3 and made a profit on it even after postage and fees.
    Its a decision I could live to regret selling it but so far I haven't. The DP2M will remain.

    We can only hope that Sigma will return to true foveon and a more compact design with the Quattro replacement - if they even do one.

    BTW: no Quattro price drop in AU that I've seen.

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    Senior Member bensonga's Avatar
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    Re: Contemplating a Quattro purchase....

    Thanks to all for sharing your thoughts and images. I'm still on the fence, especially after using my DP Merrills today (for the first time since last March). I like using those cameras a lot. The Quattro intrigues me, but since I rarely shoot wide or ultra wide angles, I'm more likely to get the DP2Q, if I do decide to pick one up. It would be nice to have a better LCD screen...that's probably the one thing I wish the Merrills had more than any other improvement. I can easily live with their other quirks.

    The current sale price for a Quattro here in the USA at B&H Photo and other retailers is only $699. Very tempting indeed.

    Gary

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    Re: Contemplating a Quattro purchase....

    Quote Originally Posted by Tim View Post
    ...I sold my DP3....
    ban him^^
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    Senior Member biglouis's Avatar
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    Re: Contemplating a Quattro purchase....

    Quote Originally Posted by Tim View Post
    I can back this up buy mentioning that I sold my DP3 and made a profit on it even after postage and fees.
    Its a decision I could live to regret selling it but so far I haven't. The DP2M will remain.

    We can only hope that Sigma will return to true foveon and a more compact design with the Quattro replacement - if they even do one.

    BTW: no Quattro price drop in AU that I've seen.
    Quote Originally Posted by foveon View Post
    ban him^^
    :-)

    No point. I did the same. In about 3 weeks time you'll realise the mistake and buy it back like I did.

    Gary, I can't see the point in buying a Quattro to replace or use alongside a Merrill, e.g. a DP2Q.

    There are some improvements although I have never publicly complained about the electronic level before. It is so large that it obscures what you are trying to shoot (unlike the level in my Sony bodies and the Leica Q). So, that is another fail I'm afraid to say.

    It might make sense if you do not have one of the original Merrills, or you go for the DP0Q for which there is no Merrill equivalent.

    LouisB

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    Re: Contemplating a Quattro purchase....

    Gary

    The Quattro versus Merrill debate seems to run and run. I once had all 3 DP Merrills but sold the DP1M and DP3M as they weren't getting much use and I wanted to use the money to add to my Fuji X system. Some time after, I was reviewing my Merrill photos and thought 'wow', why did I sell them? Looking at it now, my main regret is that I sold them for a silly price and lost quite a bit especially now that they are becoming collectors' items!

    However, I haven't really missed them. I managed to get the DP2Q and DP0Q and LVF-01 for a decent discount so feel that I have 'recovered my financial loss' to an extent. Personally I think the Quattros are a much better 'package' overall (except I can't fit them into my camera bag). As for the image quality, well, I think they have that clear, Foveon look that renders in a more natural way to the Merrills. The JPEGS are outstanding, even if you would ultimately use the RAWs for final print, and render differently to SPP. The Quattro captures subtleties of light very well. I would say that the look is different, not worse.

    Having said that I haven't had chance to use the Quattros much and I haven't produced any prints yet. It is my aim for 2016 to have more prints done, from my DP2M, my Quattros and my Fujis and finally decide which gives me the most pleasure. I'm spending too much time pixel-peeping ... especially those Quattro JPEGs ...

    If you have the chance to buy a Q and return it if you don't like it, maybe that's the best plan.

    Lee

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    Senior Member biglouis's Avatar
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    Re: Contemplating a Quattro purchase....

    Lee

    I must say that you are beginning to convince me that it is worth trying the DP0Q again.

    LouisB
    -----
    My new book "Whitechapel in 50 BUildings", Flikr Stream, www.louisberk.com
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    Senior Member Hulyss Bowman's Avatar
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    Re: Contemplating a Quattro purchase....

    Do not be "that" easy to pwn. Quattro isn't a foveon, only amateurs cry out loud it is but it is not. The only good thing in the DP0q is the lense and the lense only. Buy a Nikon coolpix A or a GR and you'll be ok and will not waste your time in software adjustments ... Seriously guys ...
    Kind regards - Hulyss - hulyssbowman.com

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    Senior Member biglouis's Avatar
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    Re: Contemplating a Quattro purchase....

    Quote Originally Posted by Hulyss Bowman View Post
    Do not be "that" easy to pwn. Quattro isn't a foveon, only amateurs cry out loud it is but it is not. The only good thing in the DP0q is the lense and the lense only. Buy a Nikon coolpix A or a GR and you'll be ok and will not waste your time in software adjustments ... Seriously guys ...
    You won't ever find me arguing about the purchase of a GR. The one camera every serious photographer should have because it is the best back up camera ever made. Small, light, outstanding image quality, incredible dynamic range etc etc.

    I tend to get into trouble when I make the above statement.

    LouisB
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    My new book "Whitechapel in 50 BUildings", Flikr Stream, www.louisberk.com
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    Senior Member Hulyss Bowman's Avatar
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    Re: Contemplating a Quattro purchase....

    Yes the GR is a very good and modest tool. Foveon cameras used to be very good and modest tools

    I'm just pissed because I sometime have a look at Dpreview where we can still find some photographers like L.Tippett. Just have a look at his two last posts ... I have nothing to say about the photo but I can clearly say that the output is far from what was the foveon (Merrill and before).

    Storms at Botallack, Cornwall (DP0Q @ 30 Seconds): Sigma Camera Talk Forum: Digital Photography Review

    Mussels at Godrevy.: Sigma Camera Talk Forum: Digital Photography Review


    In this particular situation I just want to scream : STOP USING THIS CAMERA, a simple GR or a Coolpix A would output superior IQ (overall), better colors and, with skilled sharpening, a very appealing photography. Of course we are speaking about crop sensor here. I think those guys should start to invest in 35mm : They will never look back.

    Of course those little inexpensive cameras would also provide FAR better user experience.

    A foveon camera without a foveon sensor do not have any reason to exist. Now, for ppl who have apsc DSLR, I hope Sigma will produce the DP0 lense equivalent because it is a good lense, for sure.


    EDIT:

    As someone said somewhere, and I find it spot on, it is possible that the Quattro sensor cost FAR less to manufacture than the Merrill sensor. The Merrill sensor was maybe a very costly craziness thus the initial price of the SD1. It was probably too costly for Sigma to continue to work on improving and increasing the 1/1/1 foveon. It is probably money related after all.
    Last edited by Hulyss Bowman; 7th February 2016 at 14:29.
    Kind regards - Hulyss - hulyssbowman.com
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