Sigma 10-20mm F4-5.6 EX DC A-mount lens review by QuietOC

reviewer#26521 date: Mar-13-2016
sharpness: 4.5
color: 4
build: 5
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 4.3
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP24MP24 MP36MP36 MP42MP42 MP
ownership:I used to own this lens
compared to:Rokinon 16 F2
Sony DT 16-50 F2.8
Sony CZ 16-80
Sony DT 16-105
Sony DT 18-55 SAM I/II
Sony DT 18-70
Sony DT 18-135 SAM
Sony DT 18-200
Tamron 17-50 F2.8
price paid:174 USD (used)
positive:Not very heavy
Sharp throughout range
Low distortion (very little at 12 mm)
Close focusing
Very little focus breathing
Well controlled CA
Smooth zoom and focus controls
Outperforms many normal zooms
Lens Profile in Capture One
negative:Soft, distorted corners
Complex distortion
Pink color cast
Bulky body/77 mm filter
Varifocal
Fairly slow
comment:A like-new copy with all accessories and box bought from a private seller on eBay. "LENS MADE IN JAPAN"

This lens borrows the lens ID from the Minolta AF 28-80 F3.5-5.6 kit lens.

There is rather complex but minimal distortion throughout the zoom range. The extreme corners are bent in at 10 mm, which are mostly gone by 12 mm. It has quite a bit of more simple pincushion distortion in the middle range which flattens out towards 20 mm. The Capture One lens correction profile for the Canon version of the lens works well for correcting the distortion and vignetting, but the profile has to be applied manually. The profile isn't effective at removing CA, but the normal analysis works well for that.

Image quality is much cleaner than the Sony 16-105, 18-55, 18-135, and 18-200 over their shared ranges. It doesn't perform as well as the 16-50 F2.8. It has less distortion at 16 mm than the Rokinon 16 f/2 prime, but it is not as sharp across the frame. The corners on the Rokinon are sharper at f/2 than this Sigma can achieve stopped down. The Rokinon has moderate barrel distortion while this has minor pincushion distortion at 16 mm.

It is slightly soft wide-open at the wide end, but it sharpens up quite well stopped down to f/5.6.

This lens has surpassed my expectations. It is much sharper than other reviews lead me to expect. It will be interesting getting used to the such a wide view.

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 131
  • sharpness: 4.16
  • color: 4.47
  • build: 4.53
  • distortion: 4.02
  • flare control: 4.11
  • overall: 4.26
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