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Sigma 24-35mm f/2 Art

The team at LensRentals.com has put the Sigma 24-35mm f/2 DG HSM Art on the optical bench for a resolution test.

The law of physics are what they are and one can’t expect prime-like performance across the frame and zoom range, yet Roger Cicala applauds the existence of such a lens.

But the glass here is definitely way more than half full. We have, for the first time, a modern zoom lens that reaches f/2.0 aperture and is wickedly sharp. That’s an amazing thing all by itself and this is a unique optic. What is really amazing to me is that it sells for $1,000.

The Canon-mount version is in stock at B&H Photo.

  • ElDiablo

    Hello everyone
    I just wanted some backup on a litle thing that is bothering me a lot.
    Ken Wheeler aka “the angy photographer” is posting on his YouTube channel many videos trashing Sigma to the ground, he specially targets the Art lenses as a fraud.
    I have owned 2 Sigma Art lenses and both where fantastic. the 18-35mm f1.8 on my Nikon D5200 and now the 35mm f 1.4 on my D750.
    Bottom line is that I am the only one deffending Sigma on his posts and I look like a silly fanboy. Could you also post your experiences with Sigma lenses on his channel? Am I the only one with excellent copies of these lenses?
    Thank in advance.

    • barmalini

      Ken knows sh*t about lenses, he’s just a Sigma hater, that’s all there’s to it.
      Me personally thinks Sigmas are great, though my experience is limited to compact Merrills and a 10-20 f/3.5 for Nikon

  • Just Me
  • true

    http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/Lens-Distortion.aspx?Lens=369&Camera=453&FLI=0&LensComp=977&CameraComp=453&FLIComp=1 truly remarkable lens. I hope they update this lens with better sharpness and possible OS. I don’t mind it being constant f4 or f4.5 if it doesn’t have any distortion at all

  • 85-135mm f/2

  • animalsbybarry

    With the introduction of the new Sony7rii, and even more exciting mirrorless innovations in the pipeline, Sigma will need to sooner or later be making E mount lenses.
    Here is the one I would like to see.
    300-600mm f4.8, 5.o, or 5.6.
    Two important features this lens should have are a 150mm barrel extender, and a drop in dedicated 1.8x teleconverter.
    The lens will function normally without the barrel extended, with the barrell extender it will function in a close focus/ macro mode.
    The 1.8 x tc would drop into the optimum position for the highest quality 1000mm+ and a click stop can be provided on the barrel extender specifically for use with the tc.
    Possibly a .6x focal extender could also be available..depending on if it words wth the optics.
    The optics could be available in kit form together with a holder that attaches to the lens for ease of use, or seperately to reduce the initial cost of the lens.
    The lens should sell for $3000-$3500.
    The reason thos lens shouldbe popular is,
    The current choices are 600mm f4 primes that are heavy and expensiv, or current 150-600mm f6.3 lenses that are economical light and popular.
    This lens will fall midway between those extremes.
    Since there are currently no long lenses available for E mount Sigma would also have the advantage of being first.
    There are also no really long macro lenses available…the added close up/ macro mode would make this lens highly versatile and put it in a class of its own.
    As an animal photographer I almost exclusively use long and macro lenses. Putting that feature on the lens would be super usefull because in the field it is hard to predict when and where a photo opportunity will come up.
    When the elusive tiny bird tha I can only photogragh from a distance hops onto a branch next to me….I cannot change lenses or put on extension tubes.

    • EarlFargis

      Hey, Barry. Long time, no see. When are you expecting your a7RII? Let me know what you think.

      Good luck with your lens idea. Interesting but specialized. For, say, $3,000-$3,500 for the 300-600 and $3,200 for the Sony a7RII you’re in pretty rarified company.

      Too bad the new Nikkor 500 f/4 that came out is so darn expensive. They’ve dramatically lowered the weight to not much more than the Sigma 150-600S. With PF how light could it get? Anyway, there’s always old school: Used Sigma 500 f/4.5. Yeah, it’s heavy but wouldn’t your Cotton Carrier manage it? If I can handhold a 150-600S what’s another 10 oz.? ;^)

      • animalsbybarry

        I rented the 5dsr for a week because I do not yet have my a7rii, I also rented the 150-600 sport to use with it.
        I described the experience in more detail on SAR but the 5dsr performed teriible under anything but perfectly controlled conditions…so poorly that I sent it back early nd finished the shoot with the Sony a77ii.

        • EarlFargis

          Coincidentally, I saw a Canon 5DSR Camera Store video review earlier this evening. One reason – seriously – I didn’t bring up Canon to you. Don’t get me wrong. It confirmed what I suspected (and probably most others do too): It’s a studio camera. Fantastic for that. They also said it’s a great landscape camera if you use a tripod and the caveat you don’t need huge dynamic range. It’s also ushering in an era gathering much buzz of out resolving some lenses – they provided a sample. I wouldn’t use it for wildlife.

          The Nikon 810 isn’t great action/nature/sports bodies but given the resolution you crave probably would work and are widely used by nature photographers. You might rent that. Obviously better than the 24MP Sony ASP-Cs based on my experience with my a65 though they’re okay too just keep the ISO reasonable. I have no experience with a Nikon D750 but it might be worth a rental as an experiment. The range of long glass you could rent for a Nikon body, I imagine, is astounding.

          I know I’ll never convince you but a nice used D800 + a Sigma 150-600S are only a few hundred more than the Sony a7RII body alone. If price matters. Used D750? Give it up. I’m told people won’t let them go and they’re very hard to find. Nikon briefly offered refurbished ones and they were cleaned out before I could get to their web site.

          I don’t imagine the a7RII is a great nature body but I haven’t followed it like you.

          • animalsbybarry

            I should recieve my a7rii soon.
            I have the Tamron 150-600, I was unwilling to contnue to wait for Sigma, and I also have the new Sony 90mm fe macro f2.8, but do not yet have a camera to use it on.

  • true

    24-35 has way too much distortion for my liking. Look what I found from SLRgear

    24-35mm dist graph http://slrgear.com/reviews/zproducts/sigma24-35f2a/ff/1geodist.gif

    35mm Art dist graph http://slrgear.com/reviews/zproducts/sigma35f14a/ff/1geodist.gif

    12-24 dist graph http://slrgear.com/reviews/zproducts/sigma12-24f45-56/ff/1geodist.gif

    Nikon 16-35 dist graph http://slrgear.com/reviews/zproducts/nikon16-35f4vr/ff/1geodist.gif

    I’m curiously waiting if Sigma is going to make something to compete with the 11-24, because http://puu.sh/joKGl/8d5bcaa0ac.png . Ppl say distortion can be corrected in post, but that’s not entirely true. I think it depends whether the lines can be clearly seen or not. Distortion will also do dmg to ppl’s faces when taking group shots.

    • EarlFargis

      Unfortunately, the Sigma is too late for me by about a year. A year ago, yeah, I’d be really interested.

      Add me to your list with no worries. Distortion isn’t something I worry about. For example, my Tamron 24-70 f/2.8 has horrible distortion but probably is my most used Nikon lens. DxO corrects it instantly so no worries with very rare exceptions. I’ve been toying with an odd combo of old Minolta glass on my Nikon D800 using a Fotodiox Pro adapter. Toying around with a ‘classic’ Minolta 28-85 f/3.5-4.5 lens I noticed it has some obvious barrel distortion wide and obviously is way too old to be in DxO’s database but took like 20 seconds to correct so you’d never know it was there in the 1 photo screaming for help.

      On the other hand, sharpness can’t be easily faked which is why I put a premium on it. The Sigma 24-35 looks wicked sharp at least in the center. Not prime quite prime sharp but it’s being favorably compared to primes.

      Speed can’t be faked either though modern FFs can push the ISO up pretty good, OS is pretty affective, and small amounts of noise can be reasonably cleaned up easily. Noise bothers me more than just about anything and I can’t seem to get enough speed as proved this weekend photographing in a historic cemetery with some of my older Minolta glass which is annoyingly slow even outdoors in evening shade. Had to switch to a veritable Minolta 50 f/1.7 to pull off some of what I wanted to do. f/2.0 on a zoom would be sweet even with the added weight.

      • true

        I don’t know if I’m as optimistic when it comes to distortion correction in post. When I had the 16-35 , I only used it in 22-28 range, because it really distorted that badly. If the software has the distortion pattern detection for it in their database, great. But it didn’t remove the distortion completely, only certain ammount of it. For me to know 100% whether a distortion had been completely removed, I would have to try look for some straight lines and try look whether they were truly straight or not.

        I also think that whilst post dist correction sounds good on paper, I think it reduces the sharpness / resolving power ? Lets say there might be somebody’s face at the corner of the lens that’s distorted. I think think there’s much “detail” left at that face before or after the distortion correction if the lens distorts that badly. That’s why I think I prefer if the lens has distortion correction done optically, because that means more info can be captured.

        I have both DXO op and Lightroom 6, and I think not even they can tell how much distortion needs to be corrected for the image in question. Yeah they might have the patterns for the said lens, but they don’t have a clue how much the said patterns might affect some certain picture, if lens happens to be slightly tilted. Meaning it would have to be manually too. I think lens with less distortion the dramatic effect of “non-straight” lens is not as dramatic as one that distorts more heavily.

        • Paul Menard

          yeah distortion correction robs you of sharpness, guess foveon might show it up more hence dp0?
          with our old superzoom 8mp the correction of dxo did make the pic noticeably softer

        • EarlFargis

          Well, obviously we’d like the lowest distortion possible but, frankly, I’ve never noticed any problems with sharpness using DxO. Granted, it sometimes doesn’t perfectly straighten lines. If you can find a better zoom get it but wide zooms notoriously distort. Or just go prime and call it a day.

          • true

            The sigma 12-24 (older, not the hsm m2 ) seems to have very low distortion, almost same levels as canon’s 11-24 f4. If sigma chooses to upgrade that, it would be lovely

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