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Sigma 105mm f2.8 EX Macro 1:1 Lens

05_105mmEX_1_
Review Date: Jan 21, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $525.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Sharpness equal to most L class lenses; nice colour rendition; equally great for portraits and macro work;
Cons:
lens hood

This lens is the standard to which I hold all of my other lenses to. It may have a slow AF and the AF/MF clutch can be annoying, but you cannot slight the GLASS on this lens. Sharp, wow, sharp. And good contrast. Wonderful bokeh.

One negative: the lens hood. This is a screw on lens hood made of solid metal. This may seem good, but in actual fact it has no front thread so you cannot fix a lens cap to it. Why sigma would make a screw on hood with no way to cap it is beyond me...

Cannot say enough good things about this lens.


 
Canon EF 20-35mm f/2.8L

ef20_35mm
Review Date: Jan 21, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $500.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Build quality; good zoom and focus action; sharpness (when stopped down slightly)
Cons:
prone to flare sometimes; CA slightly more visible than other newer WAs; soft at 2.8 below 30mm

I have been using the 20-35L 2.8 for about 4 months now and I don't think I would go without it. On my EOS 3, it was a superb wide angle, showing very little distortion on the edges considering its width. On the 10D, it is equivalent to about 35-55 which is not ideal wide, but still a good reach.

On the 20mm end, you have to stop up to around 5.6-8 to get the optimal sharpness and contrast. However, when at 30-35mm, the 2.8-4 is more than sharp enough.

The only issues I've had with the lens thus far:

- it is prone to flare. But show me a WA that isn't. Compared to some of the 12mm zoom offerings from Sigma, flare is not a problem with the 20-35.
- Chromatic abberation can be marked in some instances, most specifically around tree branches surrounded by light sky. This is not unusual for most lenses, but it is rather substantial for an L lens.

I have yet to use a 20 or 24 prime. I have always thought of picking one up, but then I start to wonder what the point is when I have such a nice lens with the zoom convenience.