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Sigma Fp L adds long awaited phase-detect AF


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Know we know what the L stands for in Sigma Fp-L. Landscape, or possibly large prints! Although the new sensor takes aim at photographers needing 9.5K resolution, it maintains all of the 4K Cine modes, frame rates and codec options of the original Fp. The big news for cinematographers is the addition of phase-detect AF for the first time with an L-mount camera, which is what many have been asking of Panasonic. This is a very good move and should make the Fp-L much better at subject tracking in video mode.

New blog post:

https://www.eoshd.com/sigma/sigma-fp-l-adds-long-awaited-phase-detect-af-to-l-mount-system-61mp-sensor-and-4k-raw/

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I do. Rolling shutter is terrible, dynamic range too. For the same price you have better options. Unless your only requirement is small body size. 

Yeah it is as if they thought, "well it comes like this so must be reviewed like this". What does he think the quarter inch thread is for? A beer holder? It takes about 10 seconds to attach the offici

With the larger of the grips available, or the cage inc. grip from Smallrig, plus the EVF, pretty much...which is why you then have to ask yourself the question, "what does it do, that something else

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He only mentioned PDAF in relation to stills. I didn't catch anything about it being usable in video modes... Hope I'm wrong though.

 

Also, when you say:

The 4K crop modes are not the only use of the extra resolution. For photographers there’s a pinch & zoom touch screen crop-mode available for exact framing all the way to 5x zoom from one prime lens.

You should note the pinch zoom lowers the resolution. I think he says 5x is just above full HD...

 

And will the pixel binning from 61mp introduce a lot of aliasing in video modes?

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I don't get why he went so negative on it.

Overall, there aren't many RX1 sized cameras with interchangeable lenses and the latest 61MP full frame sensors.

On the video side, not many full frame cameras do internal Cinema DNG without Magic Lantern's help either.

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The lack of an HDMI port on the EVF, or even an eye sensor on the EVF so that the picture automatically switches between screen or EVF without having to press a button seems like sloppy design.

I had the original FP, it was good in many ways, the lack of articulating screen was bad, still hasn’t been fixed here, though I did read there is a mod out now (just like the one on my BMPCC4k that makes that camera actually useable), but it would be nice to not have to tear your camera apart yourself to make it so.

This one def seems more geared towards photographers, though yeah, that AF is not much to write home about; not sure what this brings to someone interested primarily in stills. Add the EVF and it’s not longer an RX1 sized camera.

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5 hours ago, Andrew Reid said:

I don't get why he went so negative on it.

Overall, there aren't many RX1 sized cameras with interchangeable lenses and the latest 61MP full frame sensors.

On the video side, not many full frame cameras do internal Cinema DNG without Magic Lantern's help either.

Andrew, are you saying the size of the camera makes up for that rolling shutter? Or if you want to bypass the rolling shutter, you record external and get terrible aliasing while making the camera more than twice the size.

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1 hour ago, Brian Williams said:

This one def seems more geared towards photographers, though yeah, that AF is not much to write home about; not sure what this brings to someone interested primarily in stills. Add the EVF and it’s not longer an RX1 sized camera.

Not at all. The lack of mechanical shutter makes it almost unusable as a photo camera unless you just shoot landscapes. The silent shutter (ie non-mechanical) on the A7r4 is just a gimmick (because of the rolling shutter) - I have used it once (and regretted it). Of course the stacked sensor on A91/A9ii/A1 are a different story.

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7 hours ago, Robert Collins said:

Not at all. The lack of mechanical shutter makes it almost unusable as a photo camera unless you just shoot landscapes. The silent shutter (ie non-mechanical) on the A7r4 is just a gimmick (because of the rolling shutter) - I have used it once (and regretted it). Of course the stacked sensor on A91/A9ii/A1 are a different story.

Well then as a camera for video, it’s confused as hell. Certain crop settings offer better dynamic range? You only get phase detection at a different crop setting than that? Even adding Phase detection seems pointless then because it’s of no use for video here because it’s not going to be able to do useable continuous AF while shooting. Why would you ever shoot at 1x crop knowing you are taking a hit in IQ? They blocked the ability to shoot raw video externally with the EVF? So many weird things for a camera just aimed at video.

My suggestion that it was aimed more at photographers was my attempt to throw them a bone, give them an excuse.

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13 hours ago, Andrew Reid said:

I don't get why he went so negative on it.

Overall, there aren't many RX1 sized cameras with interchangeable lenses and the latest 61MP full frame sensors.

On the video side, not many full frame cameras do internal Cinema DNG without Magic Lantern's help either.

I think the tendency of youtuber reviews is to focus on specs and camera comparisons, rather than use cases and who/what the camera is intended for.  I guess it's easier, and controversy always gets the 'click'... I like Gerald's channel but this video missed the mark for me.

I'm really liking this camera for its compact travel friendly size, modularity, those colours and its focus on great images straight from the camera (rather than leaning on fix it in post).

It seems to me this suits the photography-schooled shooter who likes the minimalist gear approach, for both stills and video.  But s/he neednt forego the possibility to rig it out... the best of both worlds it seems to me.

For some people or uses, this modularity and form factor is unique. For me, it beats the cinema box cameras hands down.  That it's not a mainstream film maker's tool is not the point. As any craftsman knows, it's all about "right tool for the right job". 

Granted, rolling shutter and low light are not its strength. But that's a decision by design. All good design is founded on clear choices... and based on knowledge of the intended user... Gerald Undone wasn't wrong about the camera, but he was wrong IMO to rubbish the camera because it doesn't fit his personal needs and preferences. What's the point knocking a screwdriver for being a bad hammer?

Finally, there is just plain commercial logic.  Sigma is not trying to be Sony. That would not work: their brand, loyal customers and engineering and marketing heritage and strengths are different. We should celebrate the choice we have...

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Adding to my above post, this article is interesting: https://blog.sigmaphoto.com/2021/sigma-fp-l-camera-quick-guide-features-photos-faqs/

It doesn't major on the sensor being full frame, but rather on the 61 megapixles...

In CineD's review of the camera, they quote from a conversation with Sigma's product manager for the fp cameras, Wakamatsu-san as follows:

"For now, please see below the recommended crop factors for EACH scenario: 

For the best Resolution, x1.3 – 2.48 

For phase detection AF, x1.0 and x1.53

For best dynamic range, x1.24"

This reinforces that the sensor's FF size is not so much the point of this camera as its colour science and the way it uses those 61 MPs... but I'm no expert, just an interested customer and fan of Sigma products!  I'll be waiting to see more footage from the camera before I upgrade my now ancient GH4 LOL!

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54 minutes ago, Thomas Hill said:

Toward the end of the review, Huff tests the firmware 1.0 AF in video and it looks pretty good, better than Panny and far better than the original fp.

 

I don't think that looks so good, lots of pulsing when he was walking towards the camera; maybe better than Panasonic? But not really useable.

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17 hours ago, Andrew Reid said:

I don't get why he went so negative on it.

Overall, there aren't many RX1 sized cameras with interchangeable lenses and the latest 61MP full frame sensors.

On the video side, not many full frame cameras do internal Cinema DNG without Magic Lantern's help either.

Because he feels that wat I suppose.  Since he realises all those negatives specs according to the price why not tell that ? 

He is not working for them. I feel gratefull that there are few like him to stand really neutral on marketing .

Anyway he proposed which is the right way for this camera to have a chance in market. Sigma has to  drastically decrease price as at this range there are better cameras to spend your money.

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Not sure the need for HDMI off the EVF. So you can use the EVF instead of the 5-7" 1500nit screen with all the video assist tools you need? The HDMI is converted to make the EVF signal, is what it is.

I wouldn't use any recorder anyway. 2TB SSD recording CinemaDNG is a way better method. Less than 100g vs 800-1000g on top of the little camera. You can edit directly off the drive or export through slimraw if you need to do it off the computer (you'd need to offload it anyway and there's hardly a time penalty). If it's apparently identical to downscaled 9.5K it sounds great.

I suspect the down sampling, phase detection in the various crops will get sorted out in firmware. The important thing is it's capable of it.

I'd rather choose this than a Blackmagic 6K camera. It is much smaller, better built, weather sealed, better battery life, better low light, better reliability (from my experience with Blackmagic cameras), better autofocus implementation, better lens compatibility, both rated at 13 stops of dynamic range (up from 12.5 of the original fp), same fixed screen, same absence of built in evf, same absence of IBIS, both not that great rolling shutter, both ideally would be rigged appropriately to meet the occasion.

Here's the official dynamic range for given iso values:

fpl.jpg

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Given that the sensor is supersampling 9.5k to 4k (in mov and cdng), I think that the rolling shutter tradeoff is worth it. The supersampling and being able to use it as a UVC source with PD makes it very attractive. TBH I don't understand Gerald's criticism of the need to grade the camera when shooting in raw. Isn't that the point of raw; to have the most flexibility in post? (Obligatory mention of sony colors as well, and the sonys that need the help the most shoot 8bit)

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