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50mm F1.4 Sigma ART
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  • @BurnetRhoades

    And "I think it has tons of character" means nothing at all.

  • You're right, it doesn't, without side-by-side comparisons between both lenses. Leica designs their lenses to bench test about as good as a lens can and they'll be beat right and left by lenses that might not test as well but deliver "better" imagery when shooting real images.

    Not saying that's the case here, just, tests tell half the story at best. The Helios 44 would bench test like garbage in the zone everyone wants to shoot it (ie f/2). It totally blows up, gets soft and loses contrast. Still, tests don't tell the whole story. All day you can find people saying it has "tons of character" though.

  • "It has lots of character" is in the same category as "it is cinematic" or "it has an organic feel." They are meaningless because they can not be measured and compared objectively. They're all terms that people throw around to make "I like this" or "I don't like this" sound smarter. If you can come up with an objective set of criteria for determining the amount of character that a lens has, then I'm sure someone out there will be glad to make a website to benchmark and measure lenses using it. Otherwise, I could just as easily describe my 90/2 Summicron-R as having tons of character and someone else could come along and say that it's cold and clinical.

    Anyway, I'm pretty excited to see Sigma emerging as a company who is capable of making amazing lenses and I'm completely astounded to find myself looking forward to probably buying one of their lenses in the near future and deciding that they're a pragmatic and inexpensive trade-off to Canon's lenses like when I bought my 70-200/2.8 EX like 10 years ago.

  • Expressing an emotional reaction is quite the opposite of trying to intellectualize an opinion.

  • Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted counts.

  • I love that we're seeing complaints on such an amazing lens for such an amazing price. It make me giggle a little :)

  • @eatstoomuchjam

    You are so right, I'm trying to make make 'I like this' sound smarter - do you really want to go there? Just to make it clear so that we can try to filter out replies like yours:

    In 2009 when I first purchased the lens, the Sigma 50/1.4 was good enough for me and had 'tons of character' and here a few reasons.

    1. I was primarily using it on a 12MP D700.
    2. It was sharp enough in the center of the frame for what I like to do...candid, natural light portraits.
    3. I found the out of focus rendering more pleasing to my eye than the AF Nikon 50mm lenses available at the time.
    4. The two copies that I owned had no AF issues whatsoever - this was a huge thing as Sigma had a lot of terrible 'reputation' for notoriously inaccurate AF.

    Ok, then again I don't shoot charts - and no way was i saying the new lens sucked or has no value for whatever kind of shooting you or anyone else does - as I also own a Sigma 35/1.4.

  • @last_SHIFT

    Yeah. I want to go there - if I didn't, I wouldn't have said anything.

    Every lens has "character" and is a tool suited to a particular job. There are times when one might want to shoot with an insanely sharp astonishingly perfect lens. There are other times when one might choose a Lomo Petzval or Dog Schidt-modified Helios. Heck, I 3D print lens adapters to use lenses harvested from antique folding cameras on my DSLR because I like the way they look.

    I will stand by my statement to the end that making statements like "this lens has character" are useless without defining what things about the lens' character that you like.

    In the example of your older-generation Sigma, the model of camera and lack of AF issues don't sound like the sort of things that would matter to people looking at the images. Center sharpness and pleasant bokeh sound nice, though. Once you start using terms like that, it becomes clear to other people what you like. :)

  • Well, in the end it doesn't matter if finally all your images suck - LOL.

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    As it stands, this is one of the top autofocusing 50mm f/1.4’s money can buy. Sharp, contrasty, and built like a tank, videographers and portrait photographers looking for a cheaper alternative to the Otus might be swayed by the fact that this lens is a quarter of the price.

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    Sigma have created a lens which performs well in terms of sharpness and other optical attributes, for a fairly reasonable price.

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    Sigma 50mm F1.4 DG HSM is a fast and tack-sharp lens, both in the center and at the edges of the frame, with virtually no evidence of chromatic aberrations and very little distortion.

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  • @Vitaliy please let me re-claim that baby, ja ja ja as possibly sharp as funny, ja ja ja that's what I call dagger eyes

  • From what I can see, without having tried it, this lens strike me as a little cold (and sharp as hell, no doubt). I quite like the look of the 18-35 and 35mm art lenses, but I would go with my 60mm makro-planar over this most days of the week, but then again, I have no urge to shoot at f1.4 nor any need for AF.

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    Sigma's latest 50mm is one of the very best lenses. It's impressively sharp wide open, with none of the 'haze' or 'glow' from spherical aberration that's normally associated with this kind of fast prime. Stopped down, it just gets better; we've been shooting with it mainly on a 20MP Canon EOS 6D, and it's impressively sharp right across the frame at apertures from F2.8 - F11. Indeed it seems pretty clear that the Sigma will continue to give excellent results on higher resolution sensors for some time yet, and is likely to be utterly untroubled by the D800's 36MP sensor.

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