Sigma 35mm F1.4 DG HSM Art A-mount lens review by halflifecrysis

reviewer#44183 date: Dec-1-2018
sharpness: 3.5
color: 4
build: 4
distortion: 5
flare control: 5
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 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I used to own this lens
compared to:- 50mm f1.4 ZA A-Mount
- Zeiss 24mm f2
- Minolta 35mm f2
- Sony G Series 35mm 1.4
- Sony APSC 35mm DT 1.8.

I own the above lenses, but I've also owned the Minolta 35mm 1.4 as another lens in this range.
price paid:$700 with dock
positive:Seems to be made well, it's heavy, lots of glass. Probably the best 35mm for A mount, but I say that with a grain of salt.
negative:Slow AF, heavy, even slower to focus in low light and inconsistent focusing even stopped down regardless of microadjusting.
comment:Inconsistent focus on Sony A99ii, Often I would have to move off subject and come back. Slow focus, my Zeiss 50mm is much faster. After returning the Sigma I picked up a used Zeiss 24mm that was to no surprise tac sharp.

I tried to micro adjust on the Sigma and didn't seem to make much difference. I believe the DxO marks on this lens are a little fluffy. They probably spent hours on the dock fine tuning and readjusting and in contrast I bet there's a good chance the Sony/Zeiss products scoring slightly below the Sigma probably had little to no adjustments. Wouldn't it be nice if DxO shared that data with the specs?

It's hard to swallow that this lens as "best 35mm for A Mount". On my 77ii I get a much
better hit rate with a 1.8 Sony 35mm.

My gut says it's probably few and far in between that folks get a Sigma out of the box with that "clinical sharpness" thay you read about. This is in my opinion why online retailers often push a free dock or discounted one. It's like buying a new car and being given a free socket set and repair manual.

I wish Sony/Zeiss would come out with an updated flagship 35mm for A-mount as the G jusy doesn't cut it with the purple fringing.

I believe the only AF 35mm that I haven't tested yet is the Tamron 1.8 and I may give it a spin sooner than later if I find the right deal. In the meantime, if you have a 99ii you "may" be better off getting the Zeiss 24mm and cropping to get that 35mm feel.

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 18
  • sharpness: 4.81
  • color: 4.83
  • build: 4.78
  • distortion: 4.94
  • flare control: 4.94
  • overall: 4.86 - Home of the alpha system photographer
In memory of Cameron Hill - brettania