Sigma 30mm F1.4 EX DC A-mount lens review by QuietOC

reviewer#39919 date: Aug-12-2017
sharpness: 4
color: 4
build: 4
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 4
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 have experience with this lens
compared to:Discover 25 F1.8
Sigma 28 F1.8 EX DG
Sony AF 28 F2.8
Minolta AF 28 F2.8
Neewer 28 F2.8
Sony DT 30 F2.8 Macro SAM
Sigma 30 F2.8 DN Art
Sony DT 35 F1.8 SAM
Fotasy 35 F1.6
Kaxinda 35 F1.8
price paid:188 USD (used)
positive:Long focus throw
Stationary filter threads
Decent petal hood
Soft case
negative:CA/softness
Barrel distortion
Focus shift
Corner shading (less than 35 F1.8)
Noisy focus gears
Very octagonal aperture
comment:My first copy was a factory refurbished lens sold by Adorama on eBay. It looked to be in mint condition with all the original packaging and accessories. The second copy was used from a large eBay seller. The hood on this copy didn't fit tightly.

30 mm is a nice focal length on APS-C. Sigma has a couple of newer 30 mm F1.4 lenses one for SLRs and one for mirrorless which have better reviews than this lens. These lenses are all roughly equivalent to a 45 mm F2 on full-frame, but they are all much bigger than the diminutive Minolta MD Rokkor. "MADE IN JAPAN"

This lens is somewhat larger and heavier than the Sony DT 35 F1.8 SAM. It is much smaller than the Sigma 28 F1.8 EX DG.

The simple unit focus design moves all the glass together inside a stationary outer barrel just like the C-mount and Fotasy lenses. It only only moves a few mm from infinity to closest focus. The minimum focus distance is quite long.

The first copy definitely couldn't get very sharp wide-open. The images actually shift in one direction when focused which probably indicates some alignment issue. The second was much better and didn't show any odd shifting, but it was still difficult to find the ideal focus point. The image quality using lens would benefit from stopped down focusing. The second copy of it is much sharper the better copy of the Sigma 28 F1.8 EX DG.

The mirrorless 30mm F2.8 Art lens is shaper at the same apertures. But wide-open this lens allows in 4X more light. It does have better image quality than the 30mm F2.8 SAM Macro at the focus distances it covers. It is rather similar to the Sony DT 35mm F1.8 SAM. The corners are a bit better on the Sigma.

The focusing range is very limited compared to the 30 mm Macro or even the 35 mm F1.8. This is another way it is similar to the old, fast 50 mm lenses.

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 50
  • sharpness: 4.61
  • color: 4.68
  • build: 4.52
  • distortion: 4.56
  • flare control: 4.52
  • overall: 4.58
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