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Sigma 15-30mm f3.5-4.5 EX Aspherical DG DF

Review Date: Sep 29, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $310.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: Good wide-angle even on a 1,6x crop camera. Exceptional on film! Sharp.
Very sensitive to flares, looses contrast to the extreme when sun is in the picture or bordering! No filters. Dual focus.

I bought this lens used of a 5D photographer who however wasn't too happy about it's performance after upgrading to fullframe, so he invested in a Canon 16-35mm f/2.8L instead.

However I am very happy with the sharpness of this lens on my EOS 350D, and I like the zoom-range of the lens, especially on my EOS 33 (film camera).
I usually stop it down a bit, but even at f/5.6 it does it's job very well.

BUT, the lens is VERY sensitive to incomming light, eg. the sun in the picture or just outside it! Contrast drops dramatically if this happens and renders the pictures unusable, so you have to be very carefull when shooting against the sun.

The lens hood is build into the lens and not detachable, so you can not use filters straight away. However the lens cover has a filter thread built in, so with the metal ring part of the filter cover you can mount a filter, but it will darken the cornes at anything less than about 20-24mm focal length! Filters will darken the corners at any focal length on fullframe!

So when using filters i usually use my Sigma 20mm f/1.8 instead, that lens also handles flares a lot better!

The 15-30 is pretty heavy and large too, and as usual it has the Sigma dual focus system, annoying to change to from AF/MF!

Short version: Be very carefull with shots againt the sun, filters rarely useable and not recommended.

Sigma 20mm f/1.8 EX DG Aspherical RF

Review Date: May 25, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 8 

Pros: Nice build. f/1,8. Sharp when stopped down.
Vignetting at f/1,8. A bit soft wide open. Corner purple frining at large apertures.

I bought this lens to replace my EF-S 18-55. I like it so far, the colors are nice, the contrast is good and it is definately sharper (than the 18-55).
It shows obvious vignetting at f/1,8, it dissapears quickly stopping it down a bit though, I'm not noticing any vignetting in my shots at f/2,8. It has purple fringing, only in the corners of high contrast pictures though, nothing in the center. PF noticeable at f/2,8, but not at f/4.
It is a bit soft wide open, not worse than my 18-55 though, at f/5,6 and lower it is very good. Center sharpnes is very good starting at f/2,8.
The focusing mechanism is standard Sigma, that means you have a focusing ring which you can turn on and of, but you ALSO need to turn off AF on a switch... Why not build that mechanism into the focusin ring Sigma? No biggy though.

I like the build, and the lens even comes with a lens hood, this is usual for Sigmas though. Filter diameter is 82mm, which is a bit expenisve (especially polarizing filters).

One thing i REALLY like about this lens though, is the rear focusing mechanism (RF), which means you don't have any moving parts outside of the lens.