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Sigma DP1 in Yellowstone
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Ryan Jordan
(ryan) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Greater Yellowstone
Sigma DP1 in Yellowstone on 07/21/2008 16:16:30 MDT Print View

Just back from a 10 day trek through the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem, using the Sigma DP1. Just starting to review photos today and am very pleased with the results.

More to come eventually, but here's a teaser:

Cabin Creek, Yellowstone National Park, Thorofare Trail.

Cabin Creek area on the Thorofare Trail, Yellowstone National Park.

Chris W
(simplespirit) - MLife

Locale: .
Re: Sigma DP1 in Yellowstone on 07/21/2008 16:38:06 MDT Print View

Great color.

Franco Darioli
(Franco) - M

Locale: Melbourne
Sigma DP1 in Yellowstone on 07/21/2008 18:45:30 MDT Print View

Hi Ryan
I thought that the idea was to sit in front of the computer and pick faults on the new cameras. What's up with this "taking pictures" bit ? Looks like another fad to me.
Franco

and yes, we have noticed the shelter

Edited by Franco on 07/21/2008 19:24:14 MDT.

Chris W
(simplespirit) - MLife

Locale: .
Shelter on 07/21/2008 18:49:18 MDT Print View

What kind of shelter is that? Looks kind of funky from the back.

Rick Dreher
(halfturbo) - MLife

Locale: Northernish California
Re: Shelter on 07/24/2008 17:24:26 MDT Print View

You all are privy to the first views of the new BPL Tartan. The UL kilts should be a breakthrough product!

Roger Caffin
(rcaffin) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
Is it the camera? on 07/24/2008 17:45:37 MDT Print View

Or is it the hand and eye behind the camera?

Franco Darioli
(Franco) - M

Locale: Melbourne
Sigma DP1 in Yellowstone on 07/25/2008 01:17:14 MDT Print View

Roger, right now we want to know about the tent, forget the camera bit...

(Craftsman/blame/tools)


Franco

Miguel Arboleda
(butuki) - MLife

Locale: Kanto Plain, Japan
Re: Sigma DP1 in Yellowstone on 07/25/2008 06:46:14 MDT Print View

The suspense of the identity of the shelter is killing me!

Is the "teaser" you're referring to, Ryan, that of the camera or the shelter in the photo???

Edited by butuki on 07/25/2008 06:47:09 MDT.

Adam Rothermich
(aroth87) - F

Locale: Missouri Ozarks
Re: Re: Sigma DP1 in Yellowstone on 07/25/2008 08:31:28 MDT Print View

I thought the same thing when I first saw the picture, Miguel!

It does look intriguing, and at the same time entirely out of my price range. Though the same analysis applies to the camera :).

Adam

John S.
(jshann) - F
Re: Re: Re: Sigma DP1 in Yellowstone on 07/25/2008 11:17:13 MDT Print View

Rick called the new shelter the Tartan. It looks like a cuben fiber alphamid sorta, with a back end that can be raised for ventilation. I'm not sure what Rick meant by UL kilts unless he meant kit.

Edited by jshann on 07/25/2008 11:19:34 MDT.

Franco Darioli
(Franco) - M

Locale: Melbourne
Sigma DP1 in Yellowstone on 07/25/2008 18:52:36 MDT Print View

Francotranslationservices...
"Kilt " : an excuse for men that want to wear a skirt; made with a cloth called tartan.
Tartan : criss-crossed horizontal and vertical bands, originally a woven cloth but now made using other materials such as the one of a mysterious tent sighted at Backpackinglight.
Franco

Chris W
(simplespirit) - MLife

Locale: .
Kilt on 07/25/2008 18:55:56 MDT Print View

Real men wear kilts.

Frank Perkins
(fperkins)

Locale: North East
Re: Sigma DP1 in Yellowstone on 07/25/2008 20:42:30 MDT Print View

The camera is 8.8 ounces. I wonder if the tent is lighter ;-)

Franco Darioli
(Franco) - M

Locale: Melbourne
Sigma DP1 in Yellowstone on 07/25/2008 21:20:29 MDT Print View

"real men wear kilts"
Whatever.
But there is nothing worn under the kilt, it's all in working order.

During my brief test of the DP1 I came to the conclusion that the "bad points" were not that relevant to backpacking whilst the "good points" are all applicable.
Now if Ryan spills the beans on the new shelter we might even consider talking about the shots from his Sigma.
Franco

Rick Dreher
(halfturbo) - MLife

Locale: Northernish California
Re: Sigma DP1 in Yellowstone on 07/26/2008 11:38:38 MDT Print View

Should I have said "Clan BPL tartan"?

I'll have to stay out of the shelter discussion, as I have zero inside dope on anything new tested on Ry's trip, only the observation he's always testing *something*. I also don't know whether that fabric really appears plaid-like or the Sigma's Foveon sensor is creating a moire pattern not visible to the naked eye.

I do want to know about the carbon-fiber "branch."

Edited by halfturbo on 07/26/2008 14:16:30 MDT.

Ryan Jordan
(ryan) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Greater Yellowstone
Re: Sigma DP1 in Yellowstone on 07/26/2008 12:59:56 MDT Print View

Wow, you guys are vultures ;)

(and easily distracted)

The beauty of a dynamic forum is the ability to take conversation where it needs to go I suppose. I'm OK with that. Let this nugget be hidden in this forum!

So we can bring the subject back to photography, I'll concede a little info about the shelter.

This is a Cuben Fiber canopy and a noseeum inner tent with a floor made of the new fabric we are developing for our bivy floor line (silicone coating, about 0.9 oz/yd2). Effectively, it's a double wall tent that weighs about 12 ounces sans poles.

I took this in lieu of a tarp setup on my Yellowstone trek because (a) the mosquitoes were to be extraordinary (and they lived up to their promise) and (b) I wanted to be able to "live" in the tent a little (read, wash, change clothes, look at maps, write) because we were doing lower mileage days.

I did not take trekking poles on this trek, so the front of the tent is pitched with a packrafting paddle (the adjustable Sawyer Packraft Paddle) in the front, and a stick in the back (see photo for the stick). I borrowed my companion's trekking pole for a few nights, working out the trekking pole configuration as well. You can of course also use a paddle or trekking pole or anything else straight for the back. I also took a tent pole and figured that pitch out as well. The pole I use with this tent (when not taking trekking poles or packrafting paddles) is an Easton 0.490" that weighs about 4 oz (shockcorded), because I just like the stiffness of that pole. I did a carbon one as well, about the same diameter and only 2 oz. But you could just as easily use the Fibraplex type and get the pole down to 1.2 oz, but you lose stability going to that thin of a pole.

The rationale for this shelter is the following:

1. It must have complete views out two long sides (front and back) for grizzly bear surveillance :)

2. It must have a completely openable front side for an exceptional sunrise experience, where I can operate my camera and tripod uninhibited from the warmth of my quilt at sunrise.

3. It must have a big enough covered porch in the front for coffee brewing from bed.

4. It must be mosquito tight.

5. It must be large enough to store all my gear inside, sit up, spread out maps, and sort gear. It mostly serves this function, but is a little cramped.

I will post photos to get the discussion back on track in the next post :)

Ryan

Ryan Jordan
(ryan) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Greater Yellowstone
Re: Sigma DP1 in Yellowstone Area on 07/26/2008 14:15:32 MDT Print View

Here are a few more photos from the DP1.

The flower photo just below has had some photoshopping done to it, to equalize the balance between sky and ground, and to open up the shadows of the subject, since this was taken with a high sun.

Flowers at Enos Lake (Sigma DP1)

Flowers at Enos Lake, WY. At this point in the trek we were off our maps, and just sort of exploring our way down the Pacific Creek drainage from Two Ocean Pass on the CDT. We took a side trail up from Pacific Creek to Enos Lake, after cooking dinner late one night. The next three miles were to have the most fantastic fields of flowers of the entire trek. We took a lot of photos and videos that evening of the flowers, and the next morning as well, near Enos Lake, where this one was taken.

The remarkable thing I've noticed about the Foveon sensor is that (a) it captures a phenomenal amount of color detail in the pixels that can be drawn out later so long as you do not overexpose any of the image, and (b) the dynamic range is terrific. I'm pretty confident that if I shoot at EV-0.3 or -0.7 I can capture enough detail and color out of any shot that I can draw out what I need to during post-processing.

The quality of the images are on par with what I have been getting out of my Olympus D510 and Zuiko 12-60 lens.

Chris Townsend will be authoring a comprehensive review of the DP1 relative to its applicability for backpacking. I think for the photographer, it will be a real winner. For the snapshooter, it's going to frustrate them because it's slower than other P&S's. But if you're a meticulous photographer that likes to use a tripod, take advantage of the Magic Hours, and shoot manual, and focuses on landscape photography, then have a look at the DP1.

A few more:

Campfire on Thorofare River (Sigma DP1)

Campfire on Thorofare River. This was taken from the remotest campsite in Yellowstone: 6T1, on the banks of the Thorofare River. We were the first permitted party into SE YNP this year, and the rangers tried to counsel us not to go, because of high water, dangerous river crossings, swamps, mud, etc. Being back here, and being the only ones back here (before the madness starts July 15, when fishing season opens back here) was one of the finest experiences I've had in several treks to this location. The Thorofare was running hard, and proved to be our most formidable ford early in the day on which this photo was taken.

The photo above was taken with a long exposure - 15sec. There has been some concern about the low light performance of the DP1. After reviewing noise, etc., I have none of these concerns. I think the low light performance is excellent and on par with any of the less-than-full-frame DSLR sensors out there, and better than some of them.

Enos Cutoff Trail (Sigma DP1)

Enos Cutoff Trail near Pacific Creek. Between Enos Lake and Pacific Creek is an unmaintained trail in a state of disrepair, with lots of blowdowns, multiple paths created by outfitting party horses, washouts, overgrown willows, and mud. It was a hard day of hiking, with the weather deteriorating. We hiked late into the evening, and after baking in the hot sun of burned areas all day, we entered the cool forest of Pacific Creek. It was gloomy, but green and pretty at the same time. I really felt like this photo captured that mood.

Rick Dreher
(halfturbo) - MLife

Locale: Northernish California
Re: Sigma DP1 in Yellowstone Area on 07/26/2008 14:58:24 MDT Print View

Yeowza, look at those colors! That's nine ounces well spent, in my book.

The timed exposure--a bugaboo of typical digicams--really looks good.

Ryan Jordan
(ryan) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Greater Yellowstone
Re: Sigma DP1 in Yellowstone Area on 07/26/2008 16:01:02 MDT Print View

I suppose the next thing y'all are going to ask about are the 4.6 oz trekking shirt and 4.0 oz trekking pants in the flower photo...

Doh! Wrong forum!

Franco Darioli
(Franco) - M

Locale: Melbourne
Sigma DP1 in Yellowstone on 07/26/2008 17:33:25 MDT Print View

Hi Ryan
Finally back on track. This is one of the most significant development for the keen but lightweight photographer and some have to spoil it by digressing into totally unrelated banter.
Love the colors in the flower shots ( nice framing) and the "into the woods" feel of that last one. Reminds me of Fuji greens...
Looking forward to Chris's review.
Franco