Sigma fp L

Whenever a new camera arrives I like to see how far I can go with the controls before I turn to the instruction manual. With the SL2, as with other Leica bodies, I never needed the instructions. But I got stuck early with the fp L, unable to center the focus point.

Turns out the answer is not only simple, but also worth reading about because of other aspects of operability. The focusing controls are actually well-thought, giving the impression that the interface design had considerable input from experienced photographers; unlike the S1R, which seems to be a grown-up version of a baby busy box.

As a stills-only shooter, I want to take pictures, not spend valuable field time menu-diving, and the fp L’s direct controls and shortcuts make it a fairly nimble stills camera. The fp L is like neither Lumix nor Leica, but leans strongly towards Leica’s notion of simplicity.

I had about an hour in the morning to shoot with the 90mm Summicron-SL; and the weather allowed me outdoors with the 90-280mm in the afternoon. Focus was almost instant and, assuming no lapses in technique, dead on every time.

Extra batteries are on the shopping list. Although I’ve used it so far without any power saving settings, and it has yet to be cycled to full strength, the battery has twice gone to about 20% after an hour of shooting and fifty or so shots.

Tomorrow I’ll try it with the APS-C trio of lenses. So far, so good.

Sigma fp L/90mm Summicron-SL