SIGMA Factory Tour – SIGMA fp Camera, new 35mm Lens and Soba

Recently, SIGMA Japan held an event in Tokyo during which new lenses were announced, though the highlight of the evening was – with no doubt – the introduction of the new fp camera (fp stands for “Fortissimo Pianissimo” – strong and light at the same time).

Yamaki-san presenting the new fp camera

Kazuto Yamaki-san of SIGMA was extremely proud to present the newly developed full-frame pocket-sized cinema camera (and when I write “pocket-sized”, you really have to hold the camera in your hands in order to believe and appreciate how compact it is). Please head over to our article, where we’ve covered the launch event of the camera. You can find many more details about it in there.

At the factory – Housing for fp cameras

A day after the event, cinema5D was invited to travel to Aizu, where the SIGMA factory is situated. A bit over a year ago, I’ve visited this place already (see my factory tour video by clicking here), but, it is always nice to be back. The idea was to see how the new fp camera is being made, and also have the opportunity to test any of the new full-frame E-mount lenses (14-24mm f2.8, 45mm f2.8, 35mm f1.2) “on the way”. As I had the Sony a7 III with me, I chose to film with the new 35mm lens – my reasons being the following: In order to shoot video on a proper shutter speed, and at S-Log 2, the new 14-24mm zoom lens would have to be equipped with an ND filter. Now, the lens has a rear filter holder, but unfortunately, I did not have such a filter (ND) with me so I had to skip using that lens. The 45mm lens is truly compact and nice to hold, but for the scenery I wanted to film, the field of view would have been too narrow. So here I was, left with the SIGMA 35mm f1.2 DG DN Art Lens. All in all, from my quick observation, the lens is nice to work with, and I also like the fact that the aperture ring can be operated smoothly if wanted. (There is a way to choose between smooth and clicked aperture rotation). Maybe the only thing needing some extra attention was the manual focus. It seemed to me, as if there was a “micro drift”  right after stoping the focus ring on the focus point I wanted, so practically, I always had to “go back”  a bit with the focus ring, in oder to achieve perfect focus. As this lens was a pre-production model, it will be interesting to see how the final model will behave.

SIGMA new full frame E-mount lenses

Back to the factory tour itself – unfortunately, at this time it was not possible to film more than the camera body assembly line. I truly hope to be back in the near future and complete what I have started, being able to document more of this process.

The new SIGMA 35mm lens on a Sony a7 III- Image credit: Carey Rose

I would like to thank the SIGMA team for having us and supporting the making of this short film. I also want to thank Dave Etchells from Imaging Resource and Carey Rose from DPreview for being great press colleagues to travel with!

Music is courtesy of MusicVine. Get 25% off your next music license with code C5D25 (valid for one use per customer).

Footage at the Tsuruga-jō Castle was graded with

If you would like to see more factory tours like this one, let us know in the comment section below.

Full disclosure: Johnnie and other media representatives were guests at SIGMA Japan for the fp camera launch event in Tokyo, Japan, and the Aizu factory tour. SIGMA paid for the transport and accommodation of this trip, but there was no other payment involved whatsoever.

Equipment used for making this short documentary: (Support us by buying your goods from our site sponsors)

Video shot on FUJIFILM X-T3 (B&H, Amazon UK)

Tripod used: Gitzo GT1545T (B&H, CVP)

Rhino Evo slider: (B&H)

Sennheiser AVX-ME2: (B&H CVP)

Sony a7 III: The castle video (B&H, CVP)

SIGMA35mm f/1.2 DG DN Art Lens for Sony E (B&HCVP)

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