SGIMA DP3 Merrill

Review and Photo example of the SIGMA DP3 Merrill.



The DP3 Merrill is a compact digital camera released by Sigma in 2013. It is equipped with a 50mm focal length lens and an APS-C size sensor, so the focal length in 35mm format is equivalent to 75mm. The shortest shooting distance is 22.6cm, making it a medium-telephoto macro camera capable of 1:3 macro photography.

The sensor, which is the core of a digital camera, is equipped with the same APS-C size 3rd generation Foveon sensor as the SD1, and the resolution is 15 million pixels x 3 layers. The battery has a Sigma model number of BP-41 and is compatible with the DB-65 used in Ricoh’s compact cameras.

The DP3 Merrill has a lens housed in a very nice barrel, and the camera is heavier and heavier than the DP1 and DP2 Merrill.
The inability to raise the ISO sensitivity is a common problem in the DP and Merrill series, and the DP3 Merrill is particularly sensitive to blur, and in the compact digital style shooting method where you frame and focus while looking at the rear LCD, you have to hold the camera body and lens with both hands. Even if you held the camera firmly in place while taking pictures, if you let your guard down a little, you’d end up with a blurry photo. It was also difficult to provide an optical viewfinder for framing. The only other option would be to use the 75mm finder sold by Cosina Voigtlander. I really regret that an EVF wasn’t offered as an option.

The DP Merrill series was released in three models with different focal lengths: DP1 Merrill, equivalent to 28mm in 35mm format, DP2 Merrill, equivalent to 45mm, and DP3 Merrill, equivalent to 75mm. Both camera bodies have a square shape with few irregularities, making them a little difficult to hold in their original state, but this can be improved by installing a third-party aftermarket grip. All three cameras have the same dimensions other than the lens, so options such as grips can be reused.

The 1.2x teleconverter “FT-1201” released for DP QUATTRO3 is a screw-in type with a diameter of 58mm, so it can also be used with DP3 Merrill by using the filter ring conversion 58mm → 52mm.
When using a teleconverter, the focal length of the DP3 Merrill changes from 75mm to 90mm. Since the minimum shooting distance remains unchanged, you can take more enlarged photos. It is still in stock and available for purchase as of 2023.

A compact digital camera with an APS-C size high-performance sensor and a fixed lens is a good option for snapshots, etc. Unfortunately, the DP Merrill series also inherited the tradition of the Sigma compact digital camera, with a poor electrical system and poor battery life. It has the disadvantage of poor response due to the poor processing system. There was a time when I had cash back from the manufacturer after they were released, so there was a time when I had all three of them on hand, but I used them infrequently and sold them soon after.

Currently, used cars are being traded at a reasonable price, but considering the X3F’s difficulty in handling, battery life, and the end of repair support as of 2023, I think the Quattro series is better, but the portability is better than the Merrill series. The series is by far the best, and I really like the minimal and clean design.

The tonfa body of the Quattro series has an impact, but its portability is unbearable, and it is a shame that a camera equipped with the Quattro sensor was not released with the DP Merrill body.

I bought DP3 Merrill right after its release, didn’t use it much, and gave it away, but I bought it again in 2019 and used it again. It’s a very interesting camera, but as mentioned above, you can’t increase the ISO sensitivity, so I reconfirmed that it was a daytime only camera and let it go.

DP Merrill’s sensor only supports X3F for image recording, so image processing is limited to SPP. I also tried using a freeware utility software that converts X3F to DNG, but with the version I used, it was difficult to achieve the same quality as SPP without extensive processing of the image after converting to DNG, so I had the impression that it was unusable. there were.
Ideally, if the image after DNG conversion could be equivalent to the SPP default image, fine-tuning it with other software would be possible, but there was no such thing as a good idea. Since the conversion software is freeware created by an individual, there is no reason for users to complain.
I found out that it can be developed using the image processing software Affinity Photo, so I tested it on this page. In order to obtain the same results as SPP, we must study adjustment methods.


ItemsDP1 MerrillDP2 MerrillDP3 Merrill
Camera Effective PixelsTotal pixels:48MP
Effective pixels:46MP (4,800×3,200×3)
Lens focal length19mm(28mm)30mm(45mm)50mm(75mm)
Lens Construction9elements in 8groups8elements in 6groups10elements in 8groups
Max aperture2.82.82.8
Min aperture161616
Leaf blade997
Image sensorFOVEON X3®(CMOS)・23.5×15.7mm
Back LCD3.0 inch /920,000 dots
View FinderVF-11 VF-22
Minimum shooting distance(m)
BatteryLi-on battery(BP-41)
W x H x D
122 × 67× 64122 × 67 × 59122 × 67 × 80
Release date9.14.20127.12.20122.22.2013


  • LENS HOOD : LH3-01
  • FILTER : DG UV 52mm
  • In addition, hand grips were released by a third party.

Reference links

Update history

  • 2024.03.11:Update
  • 2023.04.13:First draft

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