Sigma DP1 Merrill review: Can this compact camera’s stunning photos overcome its shortcomings?


posted Wednesday, May 22, 2013 at 12:24 PM EDT

The Sigma DP1 Merrill marks a significant upgrade over its predecessor, the DP1x, and delivers some of the most beautiful, detailed images at low ISOs that we've ever seen from a camera in its price range. Paired with a sharp 28mm-equivalent lens, the DP1M's 46-megapixel, three-layered Foveon sensor captures images that demonstrate remarkable per-pixel sharpness and an extra-special dimensionality that has created an almost cult following of Foveon faithful.

In addition to its massive sensor upgrade, the Sigma DP1M boasts a faster lens (f/2.8 compared to the DP1x's f/4.0) and a streamlined design that features a straightforward, almost minimalist approach to its controls. That's a good match, considering the camera's imaging goals are equally straightforward -- nothing less and nothing more than to take exquisite stills (of stationary subjects in good lighting).

However, such inflexible goals -- and the sacrifices that go with it -- may be a turnoff to many photographers who also demand flexibility, usability and responsive performance from their cameras. Read our in-depth Sigma DP1 Merrill review -- which includes our lab test results, gallery images and much more -- to see if the camera's stunning images outweigh its shortcomings.