Having shot with the DP2M for the last couple of weeks, here is my thumbnail sketch of the good, bad and the ugly:
- Astonishing sharpness and micro detail, unprecedented in any similar camera I have used and exceeding by some margin the nominal 15mp spatial resolution of the Foveon sensor;
- the ability to interpolate to match or exceed higher resolution Bayer (mosaic) type sensors, approximating (in my tests) 28mp equivalency (maybe higher or lower depending on subject. As always, your mileage may and very probably will vary);
- Subtle differentiation of natural colours lending a fresh "veil has been lifted" appearance to images - the Foveon magic is in evidence here. Images just look "right"
- Superb class leading 30mm lens, with almost no CA, and outstanding resolution from center to edge;
- Simple minimalist design and easy menu system.
- tough metal construction
The bad (and ugly rolled in to one)
- Poor, under developed, raw software. Does the basics well enough, but no curves function, for example, and frequent crashes (on my Windows machine). Tendency to blocked shadows.
- Not good above 400 ISO, where noise becomes an issue;
- Some vertical fine "banding" sometimes seen in areas of even colour such as the sky. There is a lot of noise (excuse the pun) about this on some forums. My take is that the issue is overstated. I have seen it, but a quick run though your favorite NR program (mine is Neat Image) selectively applied cures the issue. However, it is unclear whether or not this is as inherent hardware problem that cannot be fixed in firmware of software, or if we might expect a firmware / software update to attack and solve the problem. If it is an inherent problem, why, and what is the future for yet higher resolution Foveon sensors? For my part, give me the occasional banding, if removing it would reduce resolution.
- a tendency to go a bit "green" at the edges in low light, and some faint purple blotching at ISO 200 and above in some shadow areas, requiring remedial work in Photoshop
- fixed focal length lens (but what a lens! Who needs zooms anyway!!)
- no built in flash (if you like that kind of thing) and no viewfinder (optional accessory available but of limited use, but better than a poke in the eye, I suppose)
For me, this camera has been a total revelation. The heck with the problems (real as they are), the upsides are so great (for me) I have scarcely been able to pick up any other camera in the last few days. I have never before seen, in any camera short of high end medium format and digital scan backs, such pixel level quality and resolution.
Game changer? Sorry, its a whole new game.