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Sigma 30mm F1.4 EX DC HSM

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Review Date: Oct 2, 2009 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: low light performance, sharpness wide open, fast and quiet AF, sturdy built, bokeh, low vignetting, price
Cons:
extreme corner sharpness, little too much distorsion, coma

This is a very good normal lens, design to be shooted in poor light conditions, to be better at the center than corners and to last a long time.

I have several lenses than include Nikon 50mm 1.4 AF-D, 50mm 1.8 AF-D, 28-105mm, 80-200 f/2.8 ... and the Sigma 30mm is by far the one I use most. Is better than the two 50mm in the center wide open and a little worst in the corners. Despite of it's defects is a very hard to beat tool in low light and a very good lens used in the rest of situations, perhaps except landscape photography if you shoot at f/5.6 or wider, because of corner softness.

It has neither visible flare or ghosts, nor the typical purple fringe you can find in the Nikon 50mm 1.4 and 80-200 both used wide open.

Color rendition is very similar to Nikon 50mm 1.4, while 50 1.8 shows a soft green cast that dissapears stopped down to f/2.0.

My biggest complaint is related to distorsion. It's, in my opinion, too much for a fixed focal lens. The good news are that is very simple to correct.

I find it a very good value for money, absolutely recommended.