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Sigma 35mm f/2 DG DN Contemporary Review

  
 
Ayoul
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p.32 #1 · p.32 #1 · Sigma 35mm f/2 DG DN Contemporary Review


Fred Miranda wrote:
If trying to emulating the RX1R, maybe consider a pre-owned A7C since they both have the same number of megapixels? I've seen one selling for $950 here.


I have that combination of A7 + sigma 35 f/2. A joy to use. The only downside of the sigma is the weight of the lens. It's not a monster but it's dense. I know that a lot of people love the look of these lenses. Maybe it's a sacrilege, but I would have loved an all plastic construction to make the lens lighter. I tried the Samyang 35 1.8 first, but couldn't get my hand on a well centered copy...



Sep 01, 2023 at 04:26 AM
Newenglandrocks
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p.32 #2 · p.32 #2 · Sigma 35mm f/2 DG DN Contemporary Review


Ayoul wrote:
I have that combination of A7 + sigma 35 f/2. A joy to use. The only downside of the sigma is the weight of the lens. It's not a monster but it's dense. I know that a lot of people love the look of these lenses. Maybe it's a sacrilege, but I would have loved an all plastic construction to make the lens lighter. I tried the Samyang 35 1.8 first, but couldn't get my hand on a well centered copy...


Yes - the density is a bit surprising. Picking up the Sigma vs the 35GM doesnít really feel all that different due to the density. Then you pick up the camera with the FE35, and - whoa! - much lighter.

The difference is much more than you would expect given the weights: 279g, 325g and 524g for the FE35, 35i, and 35GM



Sep 02, 2023 at 08:13 AM
aCuria
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p.32 #3 · p.32 #3 · Sigma 35mm f/2 DG DN Contemporary Review


Fred Miranda wrote:
A lens with a floating system is quite uncommon, not something you see often. When you're really close to your subject (MFD), most lenses work best when you slightly close down the aperture, usually by 1 or 2 stops. If you do this with the Sigma 35/2 lens, you'll get really good outcomes because it corrects spherical aberration well. But it's also cool to be able to keep the uncorrected spherical aberration for close-up shots at wide-open apertures, especially if you want to capture a particular mood.


I concur with your observation regarding spherical aberration, but it's important to note that this characteristic restricts the lens's appeal to individuals who appreciate the uncorrected spherical aberration aesthetic. As a result, I wouldn't typically recommend the 35/2 to those who aren't actively seeking this effect, given its shortcomings in other aspects.

Sigma had the option to employ an alternative lens design, such as the one featured in the FE 35/1.8, which eliminates the requirement for floating elements to achieve satisfactory close-up performance.

If a 35/2 type lens situationally requires stopping down by "1-2 stops" for satisfactory performance, then the appeal of carrying this lens alongside a zoom for low-light situations greatly diminishes. This is especially evident when you consider that a zoom lens like the 24-70GMii or similar alternatives can deliver satisfactory close up performance at 35/2.8 while also offering superior magnification characteristics of 0.32x compared to 0.18x



Sep 02, 2023 at 08:56 PM
aCuria
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p.32 #4 · p.32 #4 · Sigma 35mm f/2 DG DN Contemporary Review


Newenglandrocks wrote:
There's more to a lens than sharpness and max magnification. I would add far above the criteria above for why to shoot with the Sigma:
1) you like the way it draws and renders a scene
2) you enjoy the physical experience of the lens, including the size, density and haptics.

I own the 35GM, FE35, and recently picked up the 35i. While the 35GM is still my favorite, the FE35 has been pretty lonely recently since I got the 35i.

I had some great fun shooting it at a work event recently, and liked being able to do some story
...Show more

I can fully appreciate the idea of owning the 35i alongside the 35GM if you admire its rendering characteristics. However, I would hesitate to own the 35i alone lens because of its limitations.











Sep 02, 2023 at 09:00 PM
smpetty
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p.32 #5 · p.32 #5 · Sigma 35mm f/2 DG DN Contemporary Review


aCuria wrote:
The sigmaís maximum magnification is on the poor side (0.18x) In comparison the Sony 35/1.8 that does 0.24x.

However the big problem with the sigma, is that at this already poor 0.18x magnification the lens is simply way too soft.

The optical design sigma chose is one that needs close focus correction optics to function properly, but sigma omitted it because itís a budget lens.

Itís a fine lens if you

1) donít ever shoot close to maximum magnification
2) donít require the best possible sharpness
3) simultaneously donít require f/1.4 and yet require faster than f/2.8
4) if f/2.8 is fine a
...Show more

The Sigma 35/2 has decent AF, but for faster moving subjects, it struggles. The Sony 35/1.8 AF is instant and accurate, always. Just another consideration.



Sep 03, 2023 at 08:15 AM
 


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DavidBM
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p.32 #6 · p.32 #6 · Sigma 35mm f/2 DG DN Contemporary Review


aCuria wrote:
I concur with your observation regarding spherical aberration, but it's important to note that this characteristic restricts the lens's appeal to individuals who appreciate the uncorrected spherical aberration aesthetic. As a result, I wouldn't typically recommend the 35/2 to those who aren't actively seeking this effect, given its shortcomings in other aspects.

Sigma had the option to employ an alternative lens design, such as the one featured in the FE 35/1.8, which eliminates the requirement for floating elements to achieve satisfactory close-up performance.

If a 35/2 type lens situationally requires stopping down by "1-2 stops" for satisfactory performance, then the appeal of
...Show more

While what you say is true, at medium distances itís sensationally sharp even wide open, sharper in my experience than the Sony 1.8. The limitations are really only within a metre or so of mfd and wide aperture. If that combination is important to you, sure it can be a deal breaker. Personally I use wide apertures at longer distances where separation is otherwise reduced, and tend to shoot stopped down a little close to mfd on most lenses.



Sep 03, 2023 at 02:50 PM
aCuria
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p.32 #7 · p.32 #7 · Sigma 35mm f/2 DG DN Contemporary Review


DavidBM wrote:
While what you say is true, at medium distances itís sensationally sharp even wide open, sharper in my experience than the Sony 1.8. The limitations are really only within a metre or so of mfd and wide aperture. If that combination is important to you, sure it can be a deal breaker. Personally I use wide apertures at longer distances where separation is otherwise reduced, and tend to shoot stopped down a little close to mfd on most lenses.


I frequently find myself within a meter of the minimum focusing distance (MFD) when using a 35mm lens. This occurs often when I'm taking photographs, such as when capturing close-up portraits of my young children, shooting tighter portraits of my partner seated across the table during dinner outings, or photographing food, among other scenarios.

I employ both zoom lenses and prime lenses in my photography. I tend to opt for prime lenses in situations with low light or when I desire greater background separation. These scenarios demand a wide aperture, so being forced to stop down significantly significantly restricts the versatility of a prime lens for me.

Previously, I've been somewhat bothered by the limited maximum magnification of the Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II (0.15x) and the Sony 55mm/1.8 ZA lenses. The 0.18x magnification offered by the 35/2 lens is pushing the limits of what I find satisfactory in this regard.

Nevertheless, my experience with a 35mm lens is shaped by my personal photography style, and other photographers may encounter these limitations less frequently. That being said, I believe it's important to exercise caution when recommending the 35/2 DG DN lens without first understanding whether or not the potential limitations would apply to the individual's photography needs. The 35GM, on the other hand, is a more straightforward recommendation in this regard, and I'd venture to say it even outperforms the 35/2 DG DN in terms of sharpness.



Sep 04, 2023 at 09:00 AM
tsdevine
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p.32 #8 · p.32 #8 · Sigma 35mm f/2 DG DN Contemporary Review



Isn't MFD close to 11 inches? You may want a longer lens if you find yourself doing portraits that close.



Sep 04, 2023 at 09:08 AM
jaygould
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p.32 #9 · p.32 #9 · Sigma 35mm f/2 DG DN Contemporary Review




gordec wrote:
Sigma 35i is the closest thing to RX1R's Sonnar's bokeh and transition area for a 35/2 lens. Sure the 35GM and other bigger 35s will be better, but I'm strictly talking about compact 35. If that's important to you, it is a significant upgrade to 35/1.8. If you are purely looking at overall sharpness, the 35/1.8 is pretty good as is.



The rendering of this lens look similar to my old (and now gone) Sigma 35mm f1.4 Art HSM (although this f2 version looks significantly softer). The HSM is probably my favorite of all time in terms of rendering. The problem was the inaccurate focusing and how bulky it was (especially with an adapter), so hence I sold it.

To you who have tested both lenses, do you agree that they are similar?



Sep 05, 2023 at 01:38 AM
nehemiahphoto
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p.32 #10 · p.32 #10 · Sigma 35mm f/2 DG DN Contemporary Review


Bump

I still enjoy and use my 35i regularly. Itís my favorite native e-mount 35mm, all things balanced and considered.

















Sep 05, 2023 at 02:25 PM
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