The new SIGMA fp L is the world’s smallest and lightest mirrorless camera with a 61-megapixel image sensor. Designed to provide extremely high-resolution capability and improved usability for photographers, the fp L also includes new features for video creators, making this camera an impressive all-in-one imaging tool.
Starting at $2,499 for the camera body, the SIGMA fp L is also a remarkably affordable option for photographers who want the ability to create extremely large prints, perform extensive cropping, or simply get the most out of their full-frame glass.
Let’s learn about the new features of the fp L, take a close-up look at the camera itself, and answer some questions that might be on the minds of potential fp L users.
What’s New About the SIGMA fp L?
The SIGMA fp L is, in many ways, very similar to the SIGMA fp (we’ll get to that later), but it does offer a variety of features that enhance the experience for photographers and video shooters alike.
61MP full-frame, back-illuminated Bayer image sensor
The 61MP BSI sensor allows for a high fidelity image when paired with SIGMA lenses. The detail capturing power of the 61MP Bayer sensor is combined with SIGMA’s color science expertise from working with high resolving sensors like the Foveon X3. This allows the fp L to create three-dimensional images that still look natural.
Crop Zoom function
Another benefit of a high resolving sensor is the ability to crop into an image, allowing you to magnify the image in-camera without losing detail or taking additional time to crop in post-production. Imagine using an ultra-sharp prime lens as a short zoom, or increasing the range of your favorite telephoto zoom lens!
New hybrid (phase detect + contrast detect) autofocus system
The 61MP sensor also supports a hybrid autofocus system that takes advantage of the benefits of a phase detection and contrast detection. In simple terms, phase detection is used to acquire focus very quickly, and combining with contrast detection allows the system to be extremely precise. It’s the best of both worlds.
USB-C Continuous Power
The fp L has an updated circuit board that allows the camera to be powered through the USB-C port. A USB-C connection will also power and provide a video feed simultaneously when using the fp L as a webcam.
Optional External Electronic Viewfinder
Just announced along with the fp L is a new EVF-11 Electronic Viewfinder. The viewfinder connects to the side of the camera through the USB-C and HDMI ports. This 3.68m dot OLED panel covers a 100% field of view. The viewfinder can be tilted up to 90 degrees for viewing from different angles. The viewfinder also provides a pass thru for recording to a SSD via USB-C, as well as a headphone jack for monitoring audio.
New Color Modes (Duotone and Powder Blue)
Building on the popularity of the “Teal and Orange” color mode in the fp, the fp L offers a “Powder Blue” color mode setting, as well as Duotone options. Powder Blue is characterized by a subtle cyan tone, with less saturation and contrast. Duotone is characterized by turning the colors of an image into a striking two-color gradient. It gives both stills and videos a highly graphical look. There are 10 Duotone palettes to choose from, and each can be adjusted for contrast and sharpness for a variety of effects.
Save and Share Custom Camera Settings
With the fp L, you are now able to save and share custom camera settings with a simple QR code. You can batch save complicated settings such as director’s viewfinder specifications and frame guides. By storing QR codes, you can easily load the specific settings you need for a particular project instantly, across multiple fp L cameras, simply by snapping a photo of the code.
True 24p Recording
The fp L is now able to record video in true 24p along with 23.98. 24p is the cine standard frame rate, while 23.98 is a broadcast standard.
Quickly take a screenshot of your fp L screen by pressing the display button and center pad button at the same time. This feature can be used to quickly grab screen information to share, remember how your camera was setup, or provide a quick way to share metadata from an image. It can also be used to quickly capture the QR code for the save/load feature built into the camera. You can also load a screenshotted QR code from the fp L’s memory card to restore settings easily and quickly.
Director’s Viewfinder Improvements
In addition to providing support for additional cine cameras, the fp L also allows users to create custom frame lines when shooting with different aspect ratios in mind. With the supported custom frame lines, you can add a specific aspect ratio or absolute pixel dimensions. This will prove useful in filmmaking where it may be necessary to cover different formats from movie, television, smartphones, etc.
Shared Features with the SIGMA fp:
In addition to the many enhancements found on the fp L, it retains the many features that make the original SIGMA fp a truly unique, flexible platform.
- Dust- and splash-proof, highly durable aluminum die-cast body with large heat sink
- No mechanical shutter for compactness and completely silent shooting
- Eye-detection autofocus
- Focus peaking
- In-camera cinemagraphs
- Numerous in-camera color modes
- Supports CinemaDNG, ProRes RAW and BRAW recording
- Supports camera control with various gimbals (DJI RSC 2, RS 2, ZHIYUN Crane 2S, Weebil S)
- Dual base ISO
- Time code input function
Taking a Closer Look at the fp L
The SIGMA fp L is not only the smallest, most lightweight 61-megapixel mirrorless camera, it’s also a wonderful piece of equipment to behold.
Of course, despite the much higher resolution and added features, the fp L features the exact same dimensions, port placement, control layout and open 3D schematics as the SIGMA fp, allowing users to swap OEM and aftermarket accessories between camera bodies with ease.
SIGMA fp L Frequently Asked Questions
FAQ section updated March 25, 2021
Is there a size difference between the fp and fp L?
No. They are identical in size. Accessories designed for the fp will work with the fp L.
Will new features that are in the fp L be ported to the fp?
Yes. Many of the features like the director’s viewfinder improvements, new color tone modes and support for the EVF-11 will be made available through a firmware update that is tentatively scheduled for summer 2021.
Does the fp L have Dual-ISO?
Yes. While the fp’s Dual-ISO automatically switches at 100 ISO and 3200 ISO when shooting raw video, the fp L switches at 100 ISO and 1250 ISO.
Will Crop Zoom work in Cine Mode?
Yes. While in Cine Mode users can shoot up to 2.5x crop and retain full UHD (4K) resolution. When shooting in full HD, 5x crop is possible.
Can I set up a custom button on the fp L?
Yes. Most of the fp L’s buttons and the rear dial can be customized for quick access to a variety of settings.
When I use the fp L as a webcam, will I still need to use a battery or external power supply?
No. The fp L will transfer both power and video data through the USB-C cable, so there is no need for an external power solution, provided the USB-C port on the computer supplies enough power.
Will Atomos and Blackmagic recorders support the fp L?
Yes. Atomos and Blackmagic recorders will be supported by SIGMA just like the fp. However, compatibility will require updated firmware update from Atomos and Blackmagic, so this may not be available immediately upon release.
Will the EVF-11 also work with the fp?
Yes. However, a firmware update — tentatively scheduled for summer 2021 — will be required for compatibility.
Does the fp L replace the fp?
No. The fp L joins the fp in our family of full-frame, mirrorless cameras, and is considered a companion to the fp. Each camera has specific strengths that will appeal to different users.