Sigma Provides Update on Foveon Camera: ‘Back to the Drawing Board’

Sigma’s CEO Kazuto Yamaki has published an update regarding the Foveon X3 1:1:1 sensor and camera that was delayed in February of last year after the sensor it was working with could not go into mass production due to a critical flaw.

Yamaki explains that the project had to be completely restarted after Sigma terminated its contract with the sensor manufacturer it had been collaborating with to mass-produce the sensor. As a result, the Foveon camera was delayed “indefinitely” a year ago. In an effort to let fans know the status of the project, Yamaki has provided a bit of an update to that situation.

The company found that it needed to completely restart the process as it determined that the original sensor specifications would make it too difficult to develop a product that met its standards. He explains that the company is still in the research and development phase in that process and that Sigma has not yet proceeded in the actual development of a camera yet.

Yamaki seems determined to express that Sigma is choosing to restart this process because of its desire to produce an outstanding product, and anything they would have been able to produce to this point would have fallen short of that goal. Still, for those waiting for a Sigma Foveon camera, that device is very likely still a long ways away.

Below is the full letter from Yamaki to Sigma fans:

Dear SIGMA customers,

First of all, thank you very much for your continued support and interest in our products.

In February 2020, we announced our decision to restart our plans for a full frame Foveon X3 sensor camera, beginning with the development of a new sensor technology. We have not been able to share any information regarding this project in the time since, and I would like to use this short message to provide an update about the situation.

As previously announced, we halted development of the project after the sensor we were working with could not go into mass production due to a critical flaw. As a result, we also terminated our contract with the sensor manufacturer with whom we had been collaborating. Further, we determined that the original sensor specifications would make it difficult to develop a product that will meet our and our customers’ high standards, and accordingly we decided to go back to the drawing board.

At present, we are fully engaged in research and development of the project, led by our head office, and are reviewing specifications to ensure that we will be able to satisfy the expectations placed on this project. While we have not proceeded to the development of a camera body yet, we will continue to do our utmost to create a camera in which we have full confidence.

I would like to express my sincere gratitude for the strong and ongoing support you have shown us.

All of our employees, including me, continue to do their very best to develop new and outstanding photographic technologies. Thank you for your patience and for your understanding.

Kazuto Yamaki
Chief Executive Officer, SIGMA Corporation

(via PhotoRumors)