Battery life & PDAF . . .

Last week I contacted the local Sigma office about the fp L’s short-seeming battery life. I got a reply recommending that I take it there and leave it for a “3 to 7 working days” (translation: 2-3 weeks) to be checked. Eager neither to surrender the camera when that’s the only thing “wrong” with it, nor to take a tedious trek (twice) to their boondocks office, I looked up how CIPA determines battery life.

According to their rather simple manufacturer-friendly formula, a little over two hours “up” time is just about as claimed. I decided to change the settings to the most extreme power saving options and live with it.

Next task was to see how sharp the Lumix and 1.4X could render on the 61mp sensor. The answer: it was great on the few occasions (flat surfaces with high contrast subject matter) that the fp L focused the combo with critical accuracy. Lens: no problem.

Ok, so now I already ruled out using continuous AF with this camera. With single shot, it turns the 90-280mm SL and its own 100-400mm with about 80% critical accuracy. Lumix? Maybe 20%.

So how is it that the SL2’s much-maligned contrast-detect AF has a near-perfect hit rate with all three lenses? Maybe part of the answer is the single crosshair AF point. Maybe another part is that dual IS keeps the focus point on target. Or maybe it’s that the fp L’s implementation of PDAF is mostly a marketing point. But it focuses short lenses perfectly. With PDAF, why can’t it do the same with long lenses?

Whatever the case, it’ll hang out in the dry cabinet until something comes to market that can serve as a relatively lightweight, travel-friendly backup to the SL2. S5? No, enough with buttons, dials, and China-made stuff.

Looks like the CL may be shoehorned back into some occasional critter-chasing once that pursuit resumes . . .

CL/90mm Summicron-SL