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Cameras, Lenses and Accessories: Discuss Sigma 50mm f1.4 dilemma (with pics)...I brought one of the new (Canon mount) Sigma 50mm f1.4 EX HSMs yesterday. Now it's nicely put together , ...
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Old 12-10-2008, 22:06   #1 (permalink)
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Question Sigma 50mm f1.4 dilemma (with pics)

I brought one of the new (Canon mount) Sigma 50mm f1.4 EX HSMs yesterday.

Now it's nicely put together , not that bulky and the speedy HSM is a joy compared to the wasps nest motor noise of my Canon 50mm 1.8 mk1.

However......

I've done about 150 incredibly dull test shots and have found f1.4 to be largely useless on the close range tests I've managed . Furthermore at 1.8 I don't think there's a great difference and come f2.8, I think my 24-70 f2.8L wins.

Two quick sample crops

Canon 1.8 @ f1.8


Sigma 1.4 @ f1.8


I've put some more test shots up HERE with the last three being at f2.8.

I'd keep it for the HSM but the (high) price and the comparable IQ aren't to be ignored.

I'd be grateful if folk could have a flick through the other shots in the link and give me some feedback? I'm almost inclined to swap it for a Canon 1.4?

P.S no animals were harmed in the filming of this test though Ludo did get quite warm
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Old 12-10-2008, 22:30   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Sigma 50mm f1.4 dilemma (with pics)

Looks to me like on your 1.4 shot you've focussed directly on his forehead hairs, and the DOF being that bit shorter makes it look less sharp than the 1.8 shot.
The forehead and middle of nose look pretty sharp to me...
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Old 12-10-2008, 22:37   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Sigma 50mm f1.4 dilemma (with pics)

Those were both focused on the left eye. Have you had a look at the f2.8 versions?
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Old 12-10-2008, 22:39   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Sigma 50mm f1.4 dilemma (with pics)

Yes, and I can't see much of a difference anywhere. Have to say though, on the 1.4 shot it just isn't focussed on the eyes....the focus point is well in front of that.
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Old 12-10-2008, 23:17   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Sigma 50mm f1.4 dilemma (with pics)

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Originally Posted by JMitchell View Post
Yes, and I can't see much of a difference anywhere. Have to say though, on the 1.4 shot it just isn't focussed on the eyes....the focus point is well in front of that.
Yes I have my suspicion that this is the Sigma front/back/sideways focus prob they do seem to have a tendancy to have. I had two 70-200 f2.8s last year that had various trips to the doctors.

Though more importantly, you also can't notice much difference between the cheap as chips Canon and the expensive Sigma.....
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Old 13-10-2008, 10:37   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Sigma 50mm f1.4 dilemma (with pics)

It looks like there are issues with this lens. The Sigma MTF charts are off the scale for a lens with this aperture and some tests have been very positive but others found the focus problem you describe and also AP said it was very poor indeed wide open. I think if you get a good one it will really be worth it but you might need to kiss a few frogs first. My Sigma 30 1.4 is very good optically but it has occasionally noisy focusing. I'd send it in to get it fixed but I am worried that something else more vital will go wrong.
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Old 13-10-2008, 11:20   #7 (permalink)
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Re: Sigma 50mm f1.4 dilemma (with pics)

Vinny

Thanks for confirming my suspicions. I'll get it back to Park at the weekend and see if they have another. Otherwise I'll go with the 8mm fish I will actually use regularly, as opposed to a 300 occasional lens.
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