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Sigma 50mm f2.8 EX Macro 1:1 Lens

05_02_1_
Review Date: May 26, 2003 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $225.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Very sharp, excellent color, good EX build quality, lens hood included.
Cons:
AF could be faster and quieter, but very minor issues when using the lens for macrophotography. Mine had to be upgraded by Sigma to be used with my EOS 3.

I have used the lens on both my EOS 3 in the conventional film arena, and the 10D in the digital. The lens is very suitable for both, and with the 10D's 1.6x factor you end up with an 80mm macro. Nice!

Sharpness is outstanding, and edge-to-edge. I have no complaints at all regarding optical performance. One of the sharper lenses I've shot in 30+ years of photography. Sluggish and noisy AF can become a bit annoying when used as a "normal" lens.

I am pleased with the build quality of this lens, as I have been with my other Sigma EX glass. I like the plus of the lens hood being included. It is a metal screw-in type.

I first used this lens on the EOS 3 and was surprised to find it would not function. I contacted Sigma via e-mail and received a prompt reply that it would need to be sent in for a chip upgrade. I had the lens back from them in only eight days (including mail time). There was no charge for this service, and Sigma also did a CLA while they had it, again at no charge. I am very impressed with Sigma customer service.


 
Sigma 14mm f2.8 EX Aspherical

14mmEXhsm_1_
Review Date: May 26, 2003 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $800.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Build quality is excellent, barrel distortion and lens flare well-controlled, ability to go really wide with a 10D!
Cons:
Gel filters

I too have only used this lens on the 10D with its 1.6x focal length factor, where it's very short 14mm (22mm EFL) is a welcome addition to my lens collection. It has definitely expanded my photographic horizons with the 10D, and of course would do the same for any of the non-1x D-SLRs. Its build quality is impressive and the front lens element is gorgeous. I am quite pleasantly surprised at the control of lens barrel distortion, aberrations and lens flare. The "petal" lens hood seems effectively designed and the lens cap clever as well. Sharpness is very good and quite usable at f/2.8. I value its close focusing ability.

The only negative I have found is having to use gel filters. Fortunately, I make minimal use of filters and never have liked the uneven effect of polarizing filters with super wide lenses.





 
Canon EF 35mm f/2

ef35mmf2_1_
Review Date: Apr 16, 2003 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $230.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Sharp optics. Reasonably fast, yet compact. Good handling in the field.
Cons:

This lens is one of the better values in the Canon EF prime series. Images are quite sharp, with good contrast. I find it a great lens for street photography, offering a maximum aperture of f/2, yet remaining compact in size and light in weight. Bokeh is relatively good to my tastes, but here I am spoiled by the ten-bladed apertures of my rangefinder lenses. Flare has not been a problem for me, but I habitually use the Canon matching hood. I also use it for landscapes, normally stopping down to at least f/11, and the resulting images just pop.

Build quality is acceptable. Autofocus is somewhat sluggish but not annoyingly so.

If your priority is on sharpness, you won't be disappointed. At this price/performance ratio, it deserves a spot in your camera bag.