Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM EX. If you’re looking to purchase this lens you can buy it from Adorama for Canon, Nikon, Sony, Pentax, and Ebay for good deals. It helps me if you purchase it through one of these links here in this review. When you purchase through these links it financially enables me to devote time to develop this site further. Thanks for the help! -Todd
Plastic covered in rubber paint.
18.0 oz (511g)
Rubber on Plastic.
1.5 feet (0.45 meters).
9 blades stopping down to f/16.
f/1.4 This lens is pretty sharp with a little bit of spherical aberration. It has quite a bit of chromatic aberration which makes the lens look softer then it is.
f/1.6 sharpens up a bit but still some spherical aberration and lots of chromatic aberration but better contrast.
f/2 Sharpens up a ton with great contrast but still lots of chromatic aberration.
f/2.8: Sharper yet with and less chromatic aberrations but still quite a bit.
f/3.5: Sharper yet with almost no chromatic aberrations.
f/4: Sharper yet.
f/8: Sharper yet but the start of some diffusion.
A little bit of vignetting at f/1.4 and quickly starts to clear at f/2 and almost gone at f/2.8.
Normal amount of barrel distortion common for most 50mm lenses.
The blur is fantastic and not distracting at all.
Optics: ★ ★ ★ ★
Mechanics: ★ ★ ★
Usefulness: ★ ★ ★ ★
Availability: ★ ★ ★
Overall: ★ ★ ★
Out of 5
I went through 3 copies before I gave up. I’ve seen the test results of this lens against many other 50mm’s and yes this lens is very sharp. It is even sharper then Canon’s 50mm f/1.4. Sigma has really stepped up their game in the last 10 years and their 85mm f/1.4 and 35mm f/1.4 are fantastic lenses.
Although I know technically this lens is extremely sharp even close to wide open, good luck finding a copy that will focus. I tested a few and owned a couple and none of them could focus on an elephant! The first 2 copies were front focusing and I tried to do macro adjustments in the body but they were still too far off that I returned them. Then my last copy was back focusing like crazy with anything about 10 ft and further. I had to manually focus for these test shots because the auto focus was unusable. I had enough and went back to a real Canon 50mm f/1.4. This was very disappointing but I have never needed to do macro adjustments with any of my Canon lenses. Canon is doing something very good.
All that said I know people are getting good copies that can actually focus but many of them go through many copies to find a good one. If you have the time and can find a copy that can focus properly then you have a fantastic lens which is very simple to use.
Optically this lens is incredible with tons of light, low distortion and amazing bokeh. The only problem would be the amount of chromatic aberration which is common for f/1.4 lenses.
I found that the glass is warmer then my Canon lenses which I don’t like. Also, this is a very large and heavy lens for a 50mm. The lens does allow you to use 77mm filters which I mostly use anyways, so that was convenient.
If you have or can find a copy that focuses then yes this is a lens worth the money and is one of the cheapest f/1.4 lenses out right now. I highly suggest that if you want one then go to the store and get your hand on the lens and test it before you buy it. Test it’s focus close up and then also near infinity. Some of them will focus properly close up and some far away. My last copy was great up close but back focused past 10ft.
I may give this lens another chance but not any time soon.
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My hopes are to take the time to continue developing this website with more test photo based reviews. If you are ever interested in purchasing this lens or other photography equipment please do so through these links here in this review. You can buy it from Adorama for Canon, Nikon, Sony, Pentax, and Ebay for good deals. This helps support my family and allows me to take more time for the site. The best part is this site is free for you and I link good deals I find!
Sometimes these links will actually give you better deals then typical retail prices! I personally buy from the links I have listed whether looking for new gear or fun old stuff. I can personally attest to their good & safe service from years of experience. Thanks again to you, our readers, for supporting us! -Todd