I'm starting to feel downright happy, and I don't know if I can handle it. I was yammerin' yesterday about my old "DMD" idea—a call for a small, pocketable camera with a large sensor that can take pictures you could show next to pictures from your DSLR—and this rich and varied Photokina has brought a lot of hope to the idea.
Don't forget, though, that Sigma Corp. was really first on the scene with a near-DMD, the Sigma DP1, reviewed here on TOP by Edward Taylor. The DP1 was evidently popular in some circles, but it missed the mark somewhat from my perspective. Small camera, check; large sensor, check; prime lens, check; but the lens and the camera were both slow. So, fast lens—no check there. Good responsiveness—yikes. None there, either.
What this mainly made me fear was that Sigma's brave first attempt would flop, and then neither it nor any of the other manufacturers would try again. That worry's faded now. What with Micro 4/3 coming on the scene it's clear we're going to have a number of DMD-like alternatives to choose from soon.
But even that doesn't make me quite as happy as today's news about the DP2 from Sigma. The press release doesn't give a lot of information—no word on when, no mention of how much...not even a spec for how heavy. But the major outward change is obvious enough—it has a 24.2mm (41mm-e) ƒ/2.8 lens instead of the DP1's 16mm (28mm-e) ƒ/4 lens. So that crucial stop faster, and a more "normal" f-l. Inwardly, there's a new image processor, called "True II." Just how much improvement in speed and responsiveness this might portend remains to be seen, but it stands to reason there's going to be some improvement. Let's hope, like the speed of the new camera's lens, it's "enough."
I'll be looking forward to this one.
Featured Comment by Adam Lanigan: "I, for one, love my DP1. I do wish it were faster, and that the autofocus were even partially useful indoors, but I've gotten some wonderful images (to me, anyway) out of it in the short two months that I've had it. The Foveon sensor is really something else. Under the right circumstances, the images take on a really nice depth that I don't see from my other cams nearly often enough.
"I'd buy an interchangeable lens version of the DP in a heartbeat (given that the handling speed and other issues had been improved). Here's to hoping that little Sigma can keep their big ball rolling. And, at this point, I would consider the DP2, if not for the costly divorce proceedings that would surely ensue."