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Lens review

Sigma A 35 mm f/1.4 DG HSM

12 December 2012
Szymon Starczewski

11. Summary

Pros:
  • stylish casing of good quality,
  • sensational image quality in the frame centre,
  • good image quality on the edge of the frame,
  • slight longitudinal chromatic aberration,
  • excellent correction of the lateral chromatic aberration,
  • the lowest distortion in this class of equipment,
  • well-corrected coma,
  • moderate astigmatism,
  • silent and efficient autofocus,
  • rich accessory kit,
  • excellent price/quality ratio.

Cons:

  • huge vignetting.

The Sigma has the best results of all 1.4/35 lenses, tested by us so far in the categories of resolution, distortion, chromatic aberration and coma correction. It also fares very well in the case of astigmatism correction and the autofocus accuracy, being one of the cheapest lenses in this class of equipment. I think I don’t have to add anything more…

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A huge number of tests of 1.4/35 class lenses, performed so far, is inducing us to summarize their results. The Sigma wasn’t skimpy with optical elements or elements of special use. The launch of this lens was scheduled in such a way that it marked an important moment for the company, accentuating the arrival of a strong player in a prestige category. We don’t doubt Sigma managed to make a good impression.

When it comes to the older 1.4/35 construction, the Sony is the weakest but the elderly Canon 35L fares surprisingly well, especially if you compare it to the Nikkor 1.4/35G. The Nikkor is a new device, the most expensive one to boot, but it had several spectacular slip-ups (chromatic aberration, a not very useful maximum relative aperture, vignetting, a relatively slow AF, high astigmatism). In fact the Nikkor compares so unfavourably with its rivals that I have an impression its optical construction has been designed by a student undergoing a summer training in the Nikon headquarters…

To sum up you can say we are living in interesting times. New and thriving players have become real trendsetters, superseding those most reputable and well-known companies like Canon, Nikon or Zeiss. The 1.4/35 class is a great example of it, with Sigma and Samyang being the producers of two best lenses on the market.


Sample shots

Sigma A 35 mm f/1.4 DG HSM - Summary
Sigma A 35 mm f/1.4 DG HSM - Summary
Sigma A 35 mm f/1.4 DG HSM - Summary
Camera: Canon 1Ds MkIII
Parameters: 35 mm, f/1.4, exp. 1/8000 s, ISO 50
File: JPEG, 5616×3744 pix, 7.05 MB
Camera: Canon 1Ds MkIII
Parameters: 35 mm, f/2.0, exp. 1/6400 s, ISO 100
File: JPEG, 5616×3744 pix, 7.97 MB
Camera: Canon 1Ds MkIII
Parameters: 35 mm, f/2.8, exp. 1/4000 s, ISO 100
File: JPEG, 5616×3744 pix, 8.09 MB
Sigma A 35 mm f/1.4 DG HSM - Summary
Sigma A 35 mm f/1.4 DG HSM - Summary
Sigma A 35 mm f/1.4 DG HSM - Summary
Camera: Canon 1Ds MkIII
Parameters: 35 mm, f/4.0, exp. 1/2000 s, ISO 100
File: JPEG, 5616×3744 pix, 8.15 MB
Camera: Canon 1Ds MkIII
Parameters: 35 mm, f/5.6, exp. 1/1250 s, ISO 100
File: JPEG, 5616×3744 pix, 8.1 MB
Camera: Canon 1Ds MkIII
Parameters: 35 mm, f/8.0, exp. 1/500 s, ISO 100
File: JPEG, 5616×3744 pix, 8.09 MB
Sigma A 35 mm f/1.4 DG HSM - Summary
Sigma A 35 mm f/1.4 DG HSM - Summary
Sigma A 35 mm f/1.4 DG HSM - Summary
Camera: Canon 1Ds MkIII
Parameters: 35 mm, f/1.4, exp. 1/2000 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 5616×3744 pix, 6.23 MB
Camera: Canon 1Ds MkIII
Parameters: 35 mm, f/1.4, exp. 1/3200 s, ISO 100
File: JPEG, 5616×3744 pix, 7.15 MB
Camera: Canon 1Ds MkIII
Parameters: 35 mm, f/1.4, exp. 1/1250 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 5616×3744 pix, 6.2 MB
Sigma A 35 mm f/1.4 DG HSM - Summary
Sigma A 35 mm f/1.4 DG HSM - Summary
Sigma A 35 mm f/1.4 DG HSM - Summary
Camera: Canon 1Ds MkIII
Parameters: 35 mm, f/1.4, exp. 1/2500 s, ISO 100
File: JPEG, 5616×3744 pix, 6.6 MB
Camera: Canon 1Ds MkIII
Parameters: 35 mm, f/2.0, exp. 1/50 s, ISO 400
File: JPEG, 5616×3744 pix, 8.53 MB
Camera: Canon 1Ds MkIII
Parameters: 35 mm, f/2.8, exp. 1/250 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 5616×3744 pix, 7.51 MB
Sigma A 35 mm f/1.4 DG HSM - Summary
Sigma A 35 mm f/1.4 DG HSM - Summary
Sigma A 35 mm f/1.4 DG HSM - Summary
Camera: Canon 1Ds MkIII
Parameters: 35 mm, f/4.0, exp. 1/160 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 5616×3744 pix, 7.09 MB
Camera: Canon 1Ds MkIII
Parameters: 35 mm, f/1.4, exp. 1/1250 s, ISO 100
File: JPEG, 5616×3744 pix, 7.64 MB
Camera: Canon 1Ds MkIII
Parameters: 35 mm, f/5.6, exp. 1/100 s, ISO 100
File: JPEG, 5616×3744 pix, 8.53 MB
Sigma A 35 mm f/1.4 DG HSM - Summary
Sigma A 35 mm f/1.4 DG HSM - Summary
Sigma A 35 mm f/1.4 DG HSM - Summary
Camera: Canon 1Ds MkIII
Parameters: 35 mm, f/4.0, exp. 1/160 s, ISO 100
File: JPEG, 5616×3744 pix, 13.03 MB
Camera: Canon 1Ds MkIII
Parameters: 35 mm, f/5.6, exp. 1/160 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 5616×3744 pix, 13.59 MB
Camera: Canon 1Ds MkIII
Parameters: 35 mm, f/8.0, exp. 1/80 s, ISO 200
File: JPEG, 5616×3744 pix, 12.92 MB
Sigma A 35 mm f/1.4 DG HSM - Summary
Sigma A 35 mm f/1.4 DG HSM - Summary
Sigma A 35 mm f/1.4 DG HSM - Summary
Camera: Canon 1Ds MkIII
Parameters: 35 mm, f/2.0, exp. 1/4000 s, ISO 100
File: JPEG, 5616×3744 pix, 6.43 MB
Camera: Canon 1Ds MkIII
Parameters: 35 mm, f/2.8, exp. 1/2000 s, ISO 100
File: JPEG, 5616×3744 pix, 6.63 MB
Camera: Canon 1Ds MkIII
Parameters: 35 mm, f/4.0, exp. 1/1000 s, ISO 100
File: JPEG, 5616×3744 pix, 6.73 MB
Sigma A 35 mm f/1.4 DG HSM - Summary
Sigma A 35 mm f/1.4 DG HSM - Summary
Sigma A 35 mm f/1.4 DG HSM - Summary
Camera: Canon 1Ds MkIII
Parameters: 35 mm, f/2.0, exp. 1/3200 s, ISO 100
File: JPEG, 5616×3744 pix, 8.08 MB
Camera: Canon 1Ds MkIII
Parameters: 35 mm, f/2.8, exp. 1/1600 s, ISO 100
File: JPEG, 5616×3744 pix, 8.54 MB
Camera: Canon 1Ds MkIII
Parameters: 35 mm, f/4.0, exp. 1/800 s, ISO 100
File: JPEG, 5616×3744 pix, 8.89 MB
Sigma A 35 mm f/1.4 DG HSM - Summary
Sigma A 35 mm f/1.4 DG HSM - Summary
Sigma A 35 mm f/1.4 DG HSM - Summary
Camera: Canon 1Ds MkIII
Parameters: 35 mm, f/1.4, exp. 1/8000 s, ISO 100
File: JPEG, 5616×3744 pix, 7.23 MB
Camera: Canon 1Ds MkIII
Parameters: 35 mm, f/2.8, exp. 1/2000 s, ISO 100
File: JPEG, 5616×3744 pix, 7.77 MB
Camera: Canon 1Ds MkIII
Parameters: 35 mm, f/4.0, exp. 1/1250 s, ISO 100
File: JPEG, 5616×3744 pix, 7.96 MB
Sigma A 35 mm f/1.4 DG HSM - Summary
Sigma A 35 mm f/1.4 DG HSM - Summary
Sigma A 35 mm f/1.4 DG HSM - Summary
Camera: Canon 1Ds MkIII
Parameters: 35 mm, f/2.0, exp. 1/5000 s, ISO 100
File: JPEG, 5616×3744 pix, 7.25 MB
Camera: Canon 1Ds MkIII
Parameters: 35 mm, f/2.8, exp. 1/2000 s, ISO 100
File: JPEG, 5616×3744 pix, 7.74 MB
Camera: Canon 1Ds MkIII
Parameters: 35 mm, f/4.0, exp. 1/1000 s, ISO 100
File: JPEG, 5616×3744 pix, 7.91 MB



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