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Sigma Photo Pro: Unacceptable Stability

Sigma Photo Pro, Sigma DP Merrill, Iridient Developer, raw converter

I’ve been sending crash reports to Sigma since late last summer; one (1) crash problem was fixed. Yet many more remain and often make the software all but unusable. As I was preparing the last blog entry, I had 4 crashes in 5 minutes.

Readers know I like the Sigma DP Merrill cameras, but I want action on this software which even putting all of its other design flaws aside, cannot be used for more than 5 minutes without crashing (OS X, 12-core Mac Pro). One current alternative is Iridient Developer, which is much more reliable, but I have a goal to maintain continuity in how I present my images, so I am loathe to switch.

As a 25-year software engineer who takes intense pride in writing bulletproof code (no such thing but as close as one can), I would feel deeply embarrassed to release software of this caliber to customers. Heck, I would be embarrassed to ask an internal QA team to deal with it in this condition! There are build tools out there to instrument code and to track down memory leaks and threading errors. Fix it, Sigma.

Multi-core machines tend to flush out software threading and memory management bugs. The SPP software apparently has a strong distaste for my 12 core Mac Pro, but it crashes frequently on my 4-core laptop and 6-core Mac Pro also.

Does the Sigma development team have a 12-core Mac Pro to test on? Do they realize that on the fastest Mac available (12-core 3.33 GHz Mac Pro with 80GB memory and PCIe SSD) that the software is slow as mud? I could live with the speed, but not the crashes.

Yet another Sigma Photo Pro crash
Yet another Sigma Photo Pro crash

Dale P writes:

Your images are wonderful…..but I thought Sigma Pro Photo was not functional on a Mac now?

DIGLLOYD: The *output* from Sigma Photo Pro is delicious, so I put up with it.

Sometimes it crashes 10 times in 10 minutes (VERY frustrating), typically when changing white balance. At other times, it will let me process 10 images before crashing. In general, it is is painfully slow, and the user interface severely impedes an efficient workflow. And it crashes a lot. Probably it is more stable on Macs with fewer CPU cores, but I’ve had plenty of trouble on my 4-core laptop and 6-core desktop also. Bottom line is that code bugs can be provoked by mysterious events: timing of user actions, system activity, memory in use, etc.

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