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Sigma 30mm f1.4 EX DC HSM Digital Lens For Nikon Mount
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- Designed to fit Nikon digital SLR cameras
- 30mm Focal length
- 2 Low-dispersion glass elements; glass mold aspherical lens element
- 45-Degree angle of view
- 15.7-inch minimum focusing distance
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|Shipping||—||FREE Shipping||FREE Shipping||£5.80||FREE Shipping||FREE Shipping|
|Sold By||Available from these sellers||Elixir UK||Amazon.co.uk||OMG Sales||Elixir UK||Amazon.co.uk|
|Item Dimensions||7.7 x 5.9 x 7.7 cm||7 x 5.3 x 7 cm||7.4 x 6.3 x 7.4 cm||7.2 x 5.3 x 7.2 cm||6.5 x 4.3 x 6.5 cm||7.4 x 5.4 x 7.4 cm|
|Item Weight||430 grams||200 grams||435 grams||187 grams||230 grams||290 grams|
|Max Focal Length||30 mm||35 mm||30 mm||50 mm||50 mm||50 mm|
|Min Focal Length||30 mm||35 mm||30 mm||50 mm||50 mm||50 mm|
Style Name: Nikon Digital SLR Cameras
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Sigma 30mm f/1.4 EX DC HSM Nikon Fit Lens
'There is certainly no doubting the biting sharpness and balanced contrast of this lens across the full aperture range.' -- Outdoor Photography - November 2005See all Product description
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Despite the positive reviews around the web, this lens has a SERIOUS focusing problem. What drives me crazy is that you find more about this in the American version of Amazon, whereas the British reviews must be made by people who haven't really tried the product, or are not using it properly.
Anyway... whenever you focus on something with this sheerie lens, it actually measures a point BEHIND the area it was supposed to focus. So, if your focus point is 2 meters (6,5 feet) away from the camera, it will grab whatever is 30cm (1 foot) beyond that!!! It must focus automatically, and to the right point!! It's impossible to fix it with the in-camera fine tuning (Nikon D7000 here).
Now comes the tricky part. There's a workaround for that...
Put the camera in Live View mode. It focuses correctly! If you see the metering on the lens (put the camera on a tripod or hold it at the same point as when doing the previous test) it will actually have moved back a little - the 30cm that correct the image. You may see all that on the video I've recorded (15fps to reach the 100-MB limit in Amazon).
This workaround is NOT how the lens should work. All my other lenses focus correctly, even my Tamron 70-300mm. How come can a brand still keeps such a product with an issue that is long known, and performs no revisions or recalls?? And it's not made in Taiwan, China or Indonesia, as prejudice usually states: it's made in Japan... That doesn't matter, as far as I can see.
So... the lens would be great, if it worked correctly. In live view you can focus, but switch to the viewfinder, as a DSLR photographer will use her/his camera, and it will not be what you expect. "You get what you pay for".
Simply put, this lens is b.e.a.u.t.i.f.u.l.
It produces stunning images in low light even at 1.4.
*Note* - I have been using this lens on Crop sensor camera's only so I can't pass judgement in regards to Full frame use.
By far the most lovely, and solid piece of glass I have ever held from Sigma. The EX mark on this lens' signifies the higher end of Sigma's lens line. Rightly so!
This lens' isn't blaringly sharp at 1.4, but it still produces gorgeous images. I think people are often misguided by reviewers that say how soft a lens is wide open, when perhaps the person behind the camera isn't taking into account the camera shake that is prone to alter your focus even on the most minute scale. The focus plane is tiny, and any nudge will knock it out of whack! And by that I mean any large aperture lens, not just this Sigma lens.
Roughly as sharp as my Canon 50mm 1.4 wide open, but without the purple fringing. I haven't noticed any on this lens. Sigma did a great job preventing that!
To sum up!
This lens is affordable, well built, sharp (especially at 2.2>), Looks and feels lovely and it's a breeze to use!
Stunning front element, the focus ring has a slight friction but I personally prefer that.
AF is 'OK' It does back focus when you are at the very end of the focus plane (closest), but it's really down to user error and nothing practise can't sort out.
I primarily use this lens for cinematography, wide open, and I love it. My goto prime even over my 50mm 1.4 now. It's a more user friendly range (On a crop sensor camera).
I hope this short guide helped!
I purchased this lens after a long and painful evaluation of what I need more - a super wide angle (for this I want to buy a tokina 11-16mm) or a fast lens that is wider than my 50mm F1.8. I decided that the latter will stay more on my camera than a super wide angle lens. I then went through tons of reviews, example photos, pros & cons evaluations by different experts and users until finally took the plunge on the sigma 30mm.
My main reasons for buying this lens are:
- speed (I've factored in the possibility that F1.4 might be useless and would be happy with good results at F2)
- focal length
As always, the Amazon delivery did not disappoint. The service from Amazon is not the subject of this review. If I have to rate that, I would easily give it 5 stars.
The lens came with the lens hood and the rear cap. It felt solid in my hands which is very comforting. I liked the balance with my 550D when I mounted it on and boy was it fast!
Immediately I took a lot of photos at different F stops. I tried different lighting situations and different angles. The results were not good. I can understand that it will be soft at F1.4 but what I can't accept is the fact that my zoom (sigma 17-70 os hsm) beats the crap out of this prime lens at F2.8 to F5.6 in terms of image quality! I thought it was just a fluke so I tried them on and on and on again but all subsequent results only pointed to the same conclusion...The colours are more washed out (nope it was not my white balance setting or the exposure) and even at the centre, the images are softer than my other sigma lens at the same setting!
It was such a shame because I was really hoping that this would deliver. I want this lens to work so bad that I hesitated returning it even after seeing the results. I was telling myself, "just imagine how many shots you can take at low light conditions when you cannot step back any further? This might still work. " But when I looked at the images again, I just know that I will have to look for something else.
So why 3 stars?
- build quality is very good for the price (and a lens hood was supplied)
- F1.4 at this price for this focal length is not very often seen
- the images were not total disaster... only that they will leave you wanting for better images (especially as this is a prime lens)
Sorry for the long review but hopefully this has been helpful. By the way, I did return mine and Amazon was fantastic at handling my refund.
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