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  Reviews by: cnaderfre  

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Sigma 35mm f/1.4 DG HSM "A"

Review Date: Feb 1, 2013 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $899.00 | Rating: 7 

Pros: Beautiful design, sharpness
Chromatic aberration (possibly a bad copy?), weight

Frankly, I feel a little uncomfortable going against the trend of outstanding reviews of this lens. I had received the new Canon 28mm f2.8 IS USM for the holidays (see my review of this lens if you are interested), and at about the same time the Sigma was gaining prominence in review circles. So, I ordered a copy of the Sigma to specifically compare against the Canon.

Did a number of basic tests at various apertures, and I was very surprised to see significant CA in at below f2.8 in some circumstances. Specifically, the circumstance was bright sunlight shining on the chrome trim surrounding the windows on my Honda Accord. The trim literally appeared purple on photos under f2.8. Above f2.8 the problem disappeared.

To make sure I wasn't seeing things (I thought that I was), I retook the pictures with the Sigma, and then did the same test with the Canon 28 f2.8 IS. There was no problem at all with the Canon images. I ended up returning the Sigma and keeping the Canon.

Know that I currently own a Sigma lens which I like a lot (the 30mm DC) and I am rooting for Sigma as a maverick to challenge Canon and Nikon with some good competition. That's why I tried the new Sigma 30 f1.4. But, maybe mine was a defective copy and so it ended up being much less than I expected.

I'm not surprised by all of the positive reviews though. The Sigma definitely has the potential what everyone describes, as long as you're sure to check your copy in various challenging lighting situations and confirm it works to your expectations. I *am* rooting for this lens.

Sigma needs to keep a closer watch on it's quality control.

Canon EF 28mm f/2.8 IS USM

Review Date: Jan 31, 2013 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $629.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Sharp, light weight, silent IS, color, low distortion, really fun to use

Compared this lens to the new Sigma 30mm f1.4 and the Canon wins hands down. Optics are close to Sigma, but when you add in the benefits of the size, weight, IS and general portability, the Canon is outstanding. It's my favorite lens now and I find myself constantly trying to find opportunities to use it. It's winter in Boston right now and things are kind of bleak... But the excitement of this nifty lens has got me back out shooting again. Highly recommend.