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Sigma FP L leak suggests it'll be a unique modular full-frame camera

Sigma FP L
(Image credit: Nokishita)

A new leak has revealed the first images of the incoming Sigma FP L – and they suggest it'll be another intriguing, modular full-frame camera with a new sensor and some unique accessories.

The original Sigma FP became the world's smallest full-frame camera when it launched in July 2019, partly thanks to the fact that it completely ditched the mechanical shutter, instead relying solely on its electronic shutter.

The result was a camera that was very much designed for roaming filmmakers and cinematographers – and it appears the Sigma FP L will follow this trend, only with a new sensor and some unusual accessories.

The Sigma FP L was expected to launch at the CP+ 2021 show in February, but it sadly didn't arrive, with Sigma instead focusing on its new 28-70mm F2.8 DG DN lens. According to the latest rumors, though, the camera will now be launched at a Sigma Stage Online event on March 23.

So what can we expect from the compact mirrorless camera? Earlier rumors suggested the Sigma FP L might have a new 60MP Foveon sensor. Foveon is a unique sensor technology that's been around for almost 20 years, but has never become as popular as the dominant Bayer-filtered sensor design used by most other cameras.

Foveon's special trick is that it interprets color by capturing light at three different depths in the same photosite, rather than the Bayer approach of using a grid of red, green and blue filters. While Foveon isn't perfect, this means it doesn't need to do any demosaicing (the process of reconstructing an image from a Bayer pattern), which can help it produce lovely colors and detail.

Sadly, Sigma recently confirmed that its 60MP Foveon sensor won't be ready this year and is still in development, so the Sigma FP L won't have this sensor. This makes it a slightly less interesting cult camera, but some leaked accessories suggest it will still bring some interesting modular ideas.

Sigma FP L

(Image credit: Nokishita)

Full throttle

The Sigma FP L is still expected to be a full-frame camera like the existing FP, with L Rumors suggesting it will have a new Sony chip with a 60.75MP resolution. This will apparently have a 30MP mode with "the same quality you'd expect from a Foveon X3 sensor".

We'll have to wait until its rumored announcement next week for more details on that, but one thing we do have (thanks to the ever-reliable Nokishita) are some leaked images of some of its new accessories.

First up, there's an intriguing side-mounted viewfinder called the EVF-11. Like the Sigma FP, the FP L doesn't appear to have a built-in viewfinder, so optional EVFs are an essential accessory.

This is a slightly unusual design, though, with most add-on EVFs designed to instead sit on top of the camera rather than to the side. The EVF-11 has a rumored price of 75,000 yen without tax (around $690 / £495 / AU$890).

With other accessories like two new eyecups and a hard case also rumored to be en route, it appears the Sigma FP L will really double down on that modular design that makes it such a versatile little full-frame camera. We're very much looking forward to hearing more about it next week.

Mark Wilson

Mark is the Cameras Editor at TechRadar. Having worked in tech journalism for a ludicrous 17 years, Mark is now attempting to break the world record for the number of camera bags hoarded by one person. He was previously Cameras Editor at Trusted Reviews, Acting editor on Stuff.tv, as well as Features editor and Reviews editor on Stuff magazine. As a freelancer, he's contributed to titles including The Sunday Times, FourFourTwo and Arena. And in a former life, he also won the Daily Telegraph's Young Sportswriter of the Year. But that was before he discovered the strange joys of getting up at 4am for a photo shoot in London's Square Mile.