Sigma SD1

Sigma SD1 front

Sigma SD1 overview

Sigma SD1 is Sigma's Advanced DSLR digital camera initially revealed on September of 2010. It comes with a 15 MegaPixel, CMOS (Foveon X3) APS-C sized sensor and has a peak resolution of 4800 x 3200.

Sigma launched the newer Sigma SD1 Merrill (Read Full Comparison) to upgrade this model.

The SD1 stands at #58 out of 92 in Advanced DSLR cameras and all around #435 out of 1465 for cameras in our list. You can try our Smart camera finder to get camera listings based on your customized criteria.

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Below is a diagram of specific criteria used in the scoring system.

Sigma SD1 history

The Sigma SD1 is part of a family of products. You can view the detailed range underneath.

ModelVisualizeResolutionSensor SizeMax fpsReleased
Sigma-SD1 front thumbnailSigma SD115MPAPS-C5.0 fps2010
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Sigma-SD15 front thumbnailSigma SD15
SD1 vs SD15
5MPAPS-C3.0 fps2010
Sigma-SD14 front thumbnailSigma SD14
SD1 vs SD14
5MPAPS-C3.0 fps2006
Sigma-SD10 front thumbnailSigma SD10
SD1 vs SD10
3MPAPS-Cn/a fps2004
Sigma-SD9 front thumbnailSigma SD9
SD1 vs SD9
3MPAPS-Cn/a fps2002
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Sigma SD1 Pros and Cons

Below is a checklist of advantages and disadvantages of the Sigma SD1 based on aspects which are often seen as crucial in a digital camera.

above average min ISO (0)
change lenses (Sigma SA mount)
decent sensor size (APS-C)
exports RAW files
flash built-in
manual focus
megapixel count decent (15 megapixels)
nice screen size (3 inches)
supports phase detect auto focus
weather proofing
continuous shooting slow (5.0 frames/s)
doesn't offer selfie friendly screen
does not have image stabilization
lack of video recording
maximum ISO low (0)
no external microphone socket
no HDMI socket
no headphone socket
no liveview
no Timelapse function
screen does not articulate
screen has low resolution (460 thousand dots)
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Sigma SD1 Sensor info

The Sigma SD1 is powered by the Dual True II chip. The dimension of the sensor on the Sigma SD1 is 24mm x 16mm (APS-C). The 384 mm² sensor is able to resolve 4800 x 3200 pixels .

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The CMOS (Foveon X3) sensor boasts 15 megapixels and gives a standard ISO range of 0 to 0. RAW photos are supported therefore you have wider room to maneuver in post.

The graphic underneath displays the SD1's sensor dimensions when compared to other popular sizes. The SD1 sensor comes with a crop factor of 1.5 and is highlighted in green.

Sigma SD1 sensor size Japan-exclusive Leica Leitz Phone 3 features big sensor and new modes

To get an understanding of specific aspect ratios, you should refer to the graphic below.

Camera sensor aspect ratios

Sigma SD1 dimensions

Sigma SD1 has a weight of 0.00 lbs ( grams / 0.00 ounces) and the measurement of the camera is 146mm x 113mm x 80mm (5.7" x 4.4" x 3.1"). The weight of general Advanced DSLR camera is 776 grams and the Sigma SD1 is lighter when compared to other rivals.

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Underneath is a picture of the Sigma SD1 next to a soda so you can have a feel for its scale.

Sigma SD1 dimensions scale

The top view just below will highlight the button layout on the SD1.

Sigma SD1 topview buttons dials

Sigma SD1 Lens info

The SD1 uses the Sigma SA mount and has 77 lenses available for sale. Below is some of the lenses we have in our database which will work with the SD1.

ModelVisualizeFocal LengthApertureStabilizedWeight
Sigma-85mm-F1.4-DG-HSM-Art-Sigma-SA lensSigma 85mm F1.4 DG HSM Art85mmf/1.41130g
Sigma-300mm-F2.8-APO-EX-DG-HSM-Sigma-SA lensSigma 300mm F2.8 APO EX DG HSM300mmf/2.8 2400g
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Sigma-150-500mm-F5-6.3-DG-OS-HSM-Sigma-SA lensSigma 150-500mm F5-6.3 DG OS HSM150-500mmf/5.0-6.3 1780g
Sigma-70-200mm-F2.8-EX-DG-Macro-HSM-II-Sigma-SA lensSigma 70-200mm F2.8 EX DG Macro HSM II70-200mmf/2.8 1390g
Sigma-12-24mm-F4.5-5.6-EX-DG-Aspherical-HSM-Sigma-SA lensSigma 12-24mm F4.5-5.6 EX DG Aspherical HSM12-24mmf/4.5-5.6 600g
Sigma-18-200mm-F3.5-6.3-DC-OS-HSM-Sigma-SA lensSigma 18-200mm F3.5-6.3 DC OS HSM18-200mmf/3.5-6.3 600g
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Sigma-18-250mm-F3.5-6.3-DC-OS-HSM-Sigma-SA lensSigma 18-250mm F3.5-6.3 DC OS HSM18-250mmf/3.5-6.3 628g
Photography Glossary

Sigma SD1 Connectivity

The SD1 has the following connectivity:

  • USB Yes

Cameras which have NFC and Bluetooth compatibility can easily be used wirelessly by smartphones. You will be able to send images and at times change settings with no need to connect straight to the camera.

Many applications even give a Liveview and press the shutter if you aren't close to the camera. If the camera includes a HDMI out, it could be hooked up to an external monitor. The majority of cameras enable you to charge the battery through the USB port.

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Sigma SD1 Video info

Sigma SD1 doesn't record video. If you are searching for a digital camera to take only images, this might not be a concern.

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Sigma SD1 Weather Sealing

Sigma SD1 has got weather sealing making it a very good selection to use for tricky places. This can be particularly handy whenever you are unsure about the elements you might encounter for outdoor photography.

Sigma SD1 Screen and Viewfinder

The Sigma SD1 comes with a 3 inch fixed display supporting a resolution of 460 thousand dots.

Please note that the display screen offers no touch support.

Sigma SD1 screen and viewfinder Snapchat Adds Watermarks to AI-Created Images

The View Finder specifications regarding Sigma SD1 are the following:

  • ViewFinder Optical (pentaprism)
  • ViewFinder Coverage 96%
  • ViewFinder Magnification 0.64x

In those sunny outdoor situations which make the camera screens washed out and hard to view, viewfinders will be rather valuable.

Sigma SD1 Shutter info

Sigma SD1 is able to shoot continuously at 5.0 frames/s. The maximum shutter speed is 1/2000s.

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Sigma SD1 Flash and Hot shoe info

Sigma SD1 boasts both built-in flash and also external flash ability.

Sigma SD1 Autofocusing info

Sigma SD1 boasts both Phase Detect AF along with Contrast Detect AF. Phase Detection autofocusing is more faster & precise when compared to Contrast Detect autofocusing.

The Sensor comes with 11 focus points to select from. Sigma SD1 has got manual focus if needed for low light scenarios or you need to have more precise control on focus.

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Sigma SD1 Battery life

The typical Advanced DSLR camera battery life is 909. Nikon D780 features the highest (2260) battery life for this class of cameras.

Below is a listing of Advanced DSLR cameras which have the strongest battery life:

ModelVisualizeBattery LifeRAWNFCBluetooth
Nikon-D780 front thumbnailNikon D780
SD1 vs D780
2260 yesnoyes
Nikon-D850 front thumbnailNikon D850
SD1 vs D850
1840 yesyesyes
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Nikon-Df front thumbnailNikon Df
SD1 vs Df
1400 yesnono
Canon-EOS-90D front thumbnailCanon 90D
SD1 vs 90D
1300 yesnoyes
Nikon-D500 front thumbnailNikon D500
SD1 vs D500
1240 yesyesyes

Sigma SD1 for varying categories of photography

The following bar chart displays a analysis of the Sigma SD1 for varying categories of photography. To learn more, scroll to the specific paragraph underneath.

Sigma SD1 as a Portrait photography camera

The Sigma SD1 has a rating of 65 which is nice, and means the camera is a good choice to use for portraits. Photographing portraits favors greatly towards sensor size, RAW support together with the ability to use external lighting.

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you can focus manually
decent sensor resolution (15 megapixels)
nice sensor size (APS-C)
delivers RAW formats
no liveview

Street photography with Sigma SD1

With a nice score of 62, the Sigma SD1 is a respectable option to use in street photography. A decent street photography camera comes with a perfect balance of image quality and portability.

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sensor size is nice (APS-C)
delivers RAW files
environment proofing
no moving screen
no image stabilization
low maximum ISO (0)

Sports photography with Sigma SD1

A modest sports photography score of 56 indicates the Sigma SD1 is relatively adequate for taking photos of sports. A camera needs to have excellent autofocus plus fast continuous shooting for sports photography.

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megapixel count good (15MP)
sensor size is good (APS-C)
environment proof
comes with phase detect autofocus
no liveview feature
painfully slow continuous shooting (5.0 fps)
no image stabilization

Travel photography with Sigma SD1

Portability is very critical when picking a travel camera. Overall, the Sigma SD1 gets a nice 65 as a travelling camera which is a fine pick to buy for your trips.

Photography Glossary
environment sealing
decent MP (15MP)
has built in flash
lack of Timelapse function
screen isn't selfie friendly

Sigma SD1 Landscape photography highlights

For anybody looking to pick a digital camera for landscape pictures, the most significant factor is going to be image quality. The Sigma SD1 at it's nice grade of 61 as a landscape camera is a good choice amongst its competitors.

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you can focus manually
swap lenses (Sigma SA mount)
screen size is decent (3")
MP count decent (15 megapixels)
nice sensor size (APS-C)
delivers RAW formats
weather sealing
no liveview
does not have image stabilization
maximum ISO low (0)
no Timelapse function

Sigma SD1 Vlogging advice

A camera for vlogging really should have a articulating display, mic port and preferably image stabilization. Taking everything into account, the Sigma SD1 is not really very good as a vlog camera as it receives a really bad score of 9.

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can't shoot video

Sigma SD1 Alternatives

If you are interested in replacements to the SD1, here is a selection of the top rated cameras which fall into the family of Advanced DSLR.

The diagram here offers you an overview of the SD1 versus it's highest scored rivals suggested previously.

There are more cameras you might consider as alternative options. To go through a detailed comparison, simply click on the "compare" link.

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General Information
Brand Name
Sigma SD1
Advanced DSLR
Physical type
Mid-size SLR
Sensor Information
Sensor type
CMOS (Foveon X3)
Powered by
Dual True II
Sensor size
Sensor measurements
24 x 16mm
Sensor surface area
Sensor resolution
Anti aliasing filter
Maximum resolution
4800 x 3200
RAW support
Maximum native ISO
Lowest native ISO
Focus manually
Touch focus
Continuous AF
AF single
Tracking AF
AF selectice
Center weighted AF
AF multi area
Live view AF
Face detection focusing
Contract detection focusing
Phase detection focusing
Number of focus points
Cross focus points
Lens mount
Sigma SA
Number of lenses
Crop factor
Type of screen
Fixed Type
Screen diagonal
3 inches
Screen resolution
460 thousand dots
Selfie friendly
Touch friendly
Viewfinder Information
Optical (pentaprism)
Viewfinder coverage
Viewfinder magnification
DXO scores
DXO All around score
not tested
DXO Color Depth score
not tested
DXO Dynamic range score
not tested
DXO Low light score
not tested
Lowest shutter speed
Highest shutter speed
Continuous shooting rate
5.0 frames/s
Shutter priority
Aperture priority
Expose Manually
Exposure compensation
Set WB
Image stabilization
Integrated flash
Hot shoe
White balance bracketing
AF area
Center weighted
Video features
Maximum video resolution
Microphone port
Headphone port
USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
Environment sealing
Water proof
Dust proof
Shock proof
Crush proof
Freeze proof
146 x 113 x 80mm (5.7" x 4.4" x 3.1")
Self timer
Time lapse shooting
Storage type
Compact Flash (Type I, UDMA compatible)
Card slots
Price at launch