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      08-20-2012, 05:57 PM   #1
Teshi
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Drives: Blue/Usually full of camera ge
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Harrow - London

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Picked up the Sigma 85mm 1.4...mini review with pics

Well maybe too early to tell but I am enjoying my purchase so far...Please note all samples are copied over from Facebook at the same quality and res to make it easier.

Now I have always been a sucker for the Canon 135L for its focal length and its background separation. On a 5D, for me that was golden.

Since coming back to Canon, I went down the route of a 1D mkII so needed something similar. I have been putting it off for a while but since Sigma announced it, I have wanted to try one out. Being the UK, it is nigh near impossible to find one of these so thought to buy one instead. Lucky I found a shop who had them in stock and after a few minutes, I was good to go.

Some sample images from day one.







As the light was going down quite quick, it was unfair to say it hunted badly or the focus was off so I thought I would wait till tomorrow where I would have good light and a proper chance to test.

The next morning, I got to have another go and things were different since I could spend as long as I wanted shooting and having to cope with a variety of situations especially harsh light!

Once again some more samples.

Here is what to expect in relation to the background and foreground bokeh








So what do I reckon? Honestly I am actually wanting to shoot more and more...the length is great and overall the image quality it delivers is actually what I would want form a lens that carries this kind of price tag.

A few things

First of all, CA can be quite severe especially when the sun is out. I am not using a newer body so the results could be interesting to compare. This, I would say was a worse case scenario. Still not as bad as the Canon 85mm 1.2L for the money you pay.



The next is the lens hood. Sigma are nice to give you one...well actually two. You get one for shooting full frame and one extension which you use also if you shoot with a 1.5/1.6x sensor. The problem is if you shoot inbetween on a 1.3x sensor...there is no clarity on which to use so I need to try them both to see if there are any differences on a days worth of shooting. The petal hood itself is plastic BUT a pain when using in conjunction with a circular filter! Unless you have long thing fingers, be prepared to not use the hood or take it off constantly.

I would not say the above points are going to make your world crumble but worth noting. I am honestly not going to talk about AF accuracy since I need to spend more time on it but at the same time, its hard to rule out user error.

Pro's
- Bokeh is smooth
- Build feels solid
- Two lens hoods supplied
- Good colour reproduction

Con's
- Could be a little cheaper
- AF/MF switch feels cheap
- AF (even with HSM) is not as fast as Canon's USM

So would I recommend it? Well yes and no...If bokeh is what you are after and the Canon 85mm 1.2L (or equivalent) is out of reach, this would be what you would be after.

If you were after low light performance with speed in mind, the Canon 85mm 1.8 (or equivalent) is also worth considering. Personally I would rather spend the extra and just stick with the Sigma.

Maybe will update this as time goes on.