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Gear Talk => Lenses => Topic started by: Canon Rumors on April 13, 2014, 06:02:23 AM

Title: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Canon Rumors on April 13, 2014, 06:02:23 AM

A review of the Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art series lens has appeared on ThePhoblographer.


The lens receives pretty good marks in the review, though a few things such as the lack of weather sealing, size and microcontrast. Though the lens is remarkably sharp and the autofocus works well.


Says ThePhoblographer

Sigma’s 50mm f1.4 Art DG HSM is an exceptional lens. Starting with the design, it very much is in line with the company’s 35mm f1.4 Art optic. The outside feels and looks like something that Hasselblad might make. It feels just so great in your hands that you’d never want to let it go. In fact, if you’re a big fan of the 50mm field of view you might never want to give it up.”


Preorder the Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM: B&H Photo | Adorama


cr


Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: infared on April 13, 2014, 07:54:11 AM
"Pretty large for a 50mm f1.4"

Well it does have 13 elements, (that do wonderful things!).
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: jdramirez on April 13, 2014, 09:08:21 AM
It isn’t as contrasty as its 35mm f1.4 Art cousin and therefore doesn’t have as great colors in our opinion, but it is still quite good. Additionally, modern software lets you do almost anything with the color depth of modern sensors and lenses. So you really shouldn’t worry about it so much.

nother great review... I haven't heard the term micro contrast in relation to any other lenses.  But I'm used to post production... so I'm curious what lens has a comparable micro contrast.

Per these guys, the color in the 35mm is better, but there might be too much color for human skin... so I'm a touch confused... maybe I need to read it again.

Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: tianxiaozhang on April 13, 2014, 10:20:12 AM
Would the price come down a bit if I wait for a few months?
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: cellomaster27 on April 13, 2014, 10:59:41 AM
Would the price come down a bit if I wait for a few months?

Would be nice but I wouldn't count on it due to supply and demand. The sigma 35 and 18-35 hasn't come down.. Those are still selling real well. Maybe in a couple years? Haha
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Dylan777 on April 13, 2014, 11:26:57 AM
Would the price come down a bit if I wait for a few months?

Sigma 50mm ART production lines are in high gear. I bet 10cents that the price will not drop within few months. If you in need for 50mm, I say go for it. Just enjoy the best from Sigma.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Rudeofus on April 13, 2014, 11:29:37 AM
Interesting review, which covers many aspects that would be of interest to potential buyers of this lens. One line didn't make much sense, though: "Additionally, we feel that the saturation is a bit too strong for skin tones when shooting portraits despite Sigma’s attempts to not saturate the orange channel too much–at least that’s what we feel in our color tests."

A lens can't saturate colors beyond what's coming in through the front element. If the image looks too saturated, check and adjust your post processing settings and don't blame the lens for doing its job as intended.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: jdramirez on April 13, 2014, 11:31:22 AM
Would the price come down a bit if I wait for a few months?

Last December there was a deal on the 35 art for 699.  That's the best I've seen for new... but you can find used ones (returns) for around $800... and you can get a refurbished one from Sigma for 680.

The lens came out in September 2012.  So if you can wait that long.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: jdramirez on April 13, 2014, 11:38:49 AM
Interesting review, which covers many aspects that would be of interest to potential buyers of this lens. One line didn't make much sense, though: "Additionally, we feel that the saturation is a bit too strong for skin tones when shooting portraits despite Sigma’s attempts to not saturate the orange channel too much–at least that’s what we feel in our color tests."

A lens can't saturate colors beyond what's coming in through the front element. If the image looks too saturated, check and adjust your post processing settings and don't blame the lens for doing its job as intended.

I read that too... So the 35 has better contrast and better color... but the 50 has too much color... which suggests that the 35 has way too much color. 

I might be using the transitive property inappropriately... but da fuh?
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Chaitanya on April 13, 2014, 12:51:27 PM
f-stoppers also have posted a video review of this new lens. even they seem to be impressed with this lens.

http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=A-fl1aS6eXk&ctp=CAIQpDAYASITCIuzwLD13b0CFReCqgod21oA0w%3D%3D&hl=en-GB&guid=&client=mv-google&gl=IN (http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=A-fl1aS6eXk&ctp=CAIQpDAYASITCIuzwLD13b0CFReCqgod21oA0w%3D%3D&hl=en-GB&guid=&client=mv-google&gl=IN)
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: drjlo on April 13, 2014, 05:03:51 PM
Per these guys, the color in the 35mm is better, but there might be too much color for human skin... so I'm a touch confused... maybe I need to read it again.

I'm not sure what these reviewers are doing (or not doing) with post-processing, but I think pretty much all of the human shots I saw on The Phoglographer and f-stoppers reviews look horrible with skin tones.  Skin tones look just too stark  and cold with peaky orange/magenta bias to my eyes.  The best photo's were the black & whites IMO. 
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: jdramirez on April 13, 2014, 06:53:32 PM
Per these guys, the color in the 35mm is better, but there might be too much color for human skin... so I'm a touch confused... maybe I need to read it again.

I'm not sure what these reviewers are doing (or not doing) with post-processing, but I think pretty much all of the human shots I saw on The Phoglographer and f-stoppers reviews look horrible with skin tones.  Skin tones look just too stark  and cold with peaky orange/magenta bias to my eyes.  The best photo's were the black & whites IMO.

One of the reviews, they said they were doing minimal post production because they didn't want to give a misrepresentation of the contrast about the lens.  As for what I saw... I didn't think the color was that far off... but maybe I wasn't looking that hard.

Ok... I went back and looked... I didn't like the photos... or the models... but I tried to look past that and more about what the lens brings to the table.  Expensive gear doesn't fix boring subjects...
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: adhocphotographer on April 14, 2014, 01:55:55 AM
Nice review, I was interested to see how it did...

I'm still rocking my 50 1.8, and have been in the market for a new lens, but am in no rush and will wait to see what problems arise from it! ;)
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: beetle on April 14, 2014, 02:57:24 AM
I´m really curious to see how it performs against 35 Art. I have seen a couple of reviews but it seems no one compares these two. Still waiting for the first user reports and then I´ll decide. I would prefer 35 before 50 focal length for my 5D3. But if this new 50 is optically better then I´ll probably change my decision. Only optical performance matters for me, I do not care about weight or size. Sharpness, CA, micro contrast, this is important for me.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: wickidwombat on April 14, 2014, 02:59:07 AM
Would the price come down a bit if I wait for a few months?

Sigma 50mm ART production lines are in high gear. I bet 10cents that the price will not drop within few months. If you in need for 50mm, I say go for it. Just enjoy the best from Sigma.

they wont even clear the backorders in a few months...
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: GMCPhotographics on April 14, 2014, 05:18:20 AM
"Pretty large for a 50mm f1.4"

Well it does have 13 elements, (that do wonderful things!).

I wonder how it handles flare and direct sunlight as a consequence? The 50 f1.2 L is pretty amazing in this regard. I used to have a Sigma 100-300 EX DG f4 and a 70-200 f2.8 EX DG and they were both pretty hopeless with flare and direct sunlight. Contre-Jour was impossible with those two lenses...so i wonder how the new 50 f1.4 art fares in this regards. My old Sigma 12-24mm lens (an amazing optic, with with an odd balance of benefits, features and issues) was pretty good with flare, although not a patch on the Canon 16-35IIL
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Rudeofus on April 14, 2014, 05:31:24 AM
I´m really curious to see how it performs against 35 Art. I have seen a couple of reviews but it seems no one compares these two. Still waiting for the first user reports and then I´ll decide. I would prefer 35 before 50 focal length for my 5D3. But if this new 50 is optically better then I´ll probably change my decision. Only optical performance matters for me, I do not care about weight or size. Sharpness, CA, micro contrast, this is important for me.

I think Neuroanatomist explained this in some recent thread: most 35s use retrofocal design, whereas most 50s in the market (until recently) use a double gauss design. The double gauss design is simpler and more compact, but allows for fewer corrections and as a result gave lenses that were less than stellar in performance, especially wide open. Zeiss, and now Sigma, changed that by offering 50s as retrofocal designs, and as a result they now have 50s that blow the competition out of the water. But that means only the 50mm competition, other 35mm lenses always used retrofocal design and always had the opportunity to be decent performers.

So what do we have now: we have an outdated 35L that gets outclassed by a very modern 35A, but only by so much, the 35L wasn't all that bad after all. And we have a new 50A that makes its competitors look really old. That doesn't mean the 50A is going to be that much sharper/better than the 35A or the 35L. What the 50A does is give you the option to pick between a decent 50 and a decent 35. The final decision should (and can now) be made based on what focal length you want, not by some 2% difference in MTF ratings.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: tatsu on April 14, 2014, 09:42:38 AM
Would the price come down a bit if I wait for a few months?

Sigma 50mm ART production lines are in high gear. I bet 10cents that the price will not drop within few months. If you in need for 50mm, I say go for it. Just enjoy the best from Sigma.

I've got the 35A and love it so pulling the trigger on the 50A pre-order was a no brainer after the first review. 

Definitely time for me to move on from the Canon 50mm 1.4 which was the first lens I ever bought.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: beetle on April 14, 2014, 10:09:37 AM
I´m really curious to see how it performs against 35 Art. I have seen a couple of reviews but it seems no one compares these two. Still waiting for the first user reports and then I´ll decide. I would prefer 35 before 50 focal length for my 5D3. But if this new 50 is optically better then I´ll probably change my decision. Only optical performance matters for me, I do not care about weight or size. Sharpness, CA, micro contrast, this is important for me.

I think Neuroanatomist explained this in some recent thread: most 35s use retrofocal design, whereas most 50s in the market (until recently) use a double gauss design. The double gauss design is simpler and more compact, but allows for fewer corrections and as a result gave lenses that were less than stellar in performance, especially wide open. Zeiss, and now Sigma, changed that by offering 50s as retrofocal designs, and as a result they now have 50s that blow the competition out of the water. But that means only the 50mm competition, other 35mm lenses always used retrofocal design and always had the opportunity to be decent performers.

So what do we have now: we have an outdated 35L that gets outclassed by a very modern 35A, but only by so much, the 35L wasn't all that bad after all. And we have a new 50A that makes its competitors look really old. That doesn't mean the 50A is going to be that much sharper/better than the 35A or the 35L. What the 50A does is give you the option to pick between a decent 50 and a decent 35. The final decision should (and can now) be made based on what focal length you want, not by some 2% difference in MTF ratings.

I agree, I do not expect big differences between 50A and 35A. Differences in optical performance will be most probably negligible. But you know, it would be nice to see a comparison from somebody, who had a chance to play with both of them. Fortunately I´m not forced to make the decision right now. I´ll most probably compare both personally before I make my final decision.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: mackguyver on April 14, 2014, 12:45:00 PM
Here's what I've been waiting for - a 50L to 50A comparison from SLR Lounge (http://www.slrlounge.com/head2head-sigma-50mm-f1-4-dg-hsm-art-vs-canon-50mm-f1-2)

I think it's enough to convince me to cancel my pre-order.  The Sigma is sharper, but not shockingly so, and the Canon's bokeh is slightly better (IMHO).  The Canon also appears to have ever-so-slightly better contrast, while the Sigma has better CA control, but again, only by a hair.

The other thing I've learned is that you'll have buy the USB dock to enable full time manual focus (which I guess isn't standard for Sigmas).  That's crappy. 

The 50L has killer build quality and USM in a much smaller package and I don't think the Sigma is worth 950 of my dollars for such subtle differences at f/1.4 in what for me, is a portrait lens. 

I guess I can't cancel it till the 24th, so I'll keep my mind open until then, but I think I'm going to cancel and resume the 50L II vigil ;)
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: candyman on April 14, 2014, 12:57:53 PM
Here's what I've been waiting for - a 50L to 50A comparison from SLR Lounge (http://www.slrlounge.com/head2head-sigma-50mm-f1-4-dg-hsm-art-vs-canon-50mm-f1-2)

I think it's enough to convince me to cancel my pre-order.  The Sigma is sharper, but not shockingly so, and the Canon's bokeh is slightly better (IMHO).  The Canon also appears to have ever-so-slightly better contrast, while the Sigma has better CA control, but again, only by a hair.

The other thing I've learned is that you'll have buy the USB dock to enable full time manual focus (which I guess isn't standard for Sigmas).  That's crappy. 

The 50L has killer build quality and USM in a much smaller package and I don't think the Sigma is worth 950 of my dollars for such subtle differences at f/1.4 in what for me, is a portrait lens. 

I guess I can't cancel it till the 24th, so I'll keep my mind open until then, but I think I'm going to cancel and resume the 50L II vigil ;)


The differences are little, very little. I can understand while you own the 50L not spending money on the Sigma. I would not spend 500 euro more (here in the Netherlands) for the 50L while the difference with the Sigma is so little. So as a starter for the 50mm, my choice would be the Sigma.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: mackguyver on April 14, 2014, 01:03:07 PM
Here's what I've been waiting for - a 50L to 50A comparison from SLR Lounge (http://www.slrlounge.com/head2head-sigma-50mm-f1-4-dg-hsm-art-vs-canon-50mm-f1-2)

I think it's enough to convince me to cancel my pre-order.  The Sigma is sharper, but not shockingly so, and the Canon's bokeh is slightly better (IMHO).  The Canon also appears to have ever-so-slightly better contrast, while the Sigma has better CA control, but again, only by a hair.

The other thing I've learned is that you'll have buy the USB dock to enable full time manual focus (which I guess isn't standard for Sigmas).  That's crappy. 

The 50L has killer build quality and USM in a much smaller package and I don't think the Sigma is worth 950 of my dollars for such subtle differences at f/1.4 in what for me, is a portrait lens. 

I guess I can't cancel it till the 24th, so I'll keep my mind open until then, but I think I'm going to cancel and resume the 50L II vigil ;)


The differences are little, very little. I can understand while you own the 50L not spending money on the Sigma. I would not spend 500 euro more (here in the Netherlands) for the 50L while the difference with the Sigma is so little. So as a starter for the 50mm, my choice would be the Sigma.
That's very true - if I didn't own the 50L, the Sigma would be my choice, but as I have purchased, sold, and re-purchased(!) the 50L, I think I'll stick with it.

Update: B&H allows you to cancel online now (finally!) so the deed is done. 
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: jdramirez on April 14, 2014, 02:10:33 PM
As good as... isn't blowing it out of the water.  If it is true.... well I can't believe it to be true. 

I'm speechless.


Here's what I've been waiting for - a 50L to 50A comparison from SLR Lounge (http://www.slrlounge.com/head2head-sigma-50mm-f1-4-dg-hsm-art-vs-canon-50mm-f1-2)

I think it's enough to convince me to cancel my pre-order.  The Sigma is sharper, but not shockingly so, and the Canon's bokeh is slightly better (IMHO).  The Canon also appears to have ever-so-slightly better contrast, while the Sigma has better CA control, but again, only by a hair.

The other thing I've learned is that you'll have buy the USB dock to enable full time manual focus (which I guess isn't standard for Sigmas).  That's crappy. 

The 50L has killer build quality and USM in a much smaller package and I don't think the Sigma is worth 950 of my dollars for such subtle differences at f/1.4 in what for me, is a portrait lens. 

I guess I can't cancel it till the 24th, so I'll keep my mind open until then, but I think I'm going to cancel and resume the 50L II vigil ;)
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: bereninga on April 14, 2014, 02:54:51 PM
Here's what I've been waiting for - a 50L to 50A comparison from SLR Lounge (http://www.slrlounge.com/head2head-sigma-50mm-f1-4-dg-hsm-art-vs-canon-50mm-f1-2)

I think it's enough to convince me to cancel my pre-order.  The Sigma is sharper, but not shockingly so, and the Canon's bokeh is slightly better (IMHO).  The Canon also appears to have ever-so-slightly better contrast, while the Sigma has better CA control, but again, only by a hair.

The other thing I've learned is that you'll have buy the USB dock to enable full time manual focus (which I guess isn't standard for Sigmas).  That's crappy. 

The 50L has killer build quality and USM in a much smaller package and I don't think the Sigma is worth 950 of my dollars for such subtle differences at f/1.4 in what for me, is a portrait lens. 

I guess I can't cancel it till the 24th, so I'll keep my mind open until then, but I think I'm going to cancel and resume the 50L II vigil ;)

I agree that if I had the 50L, I'd stick with it. But for a first-time buyer of a high end 50mm, I think the Sigma would be the better choice. The price difference is very difficult to ignore.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Viggo on April 14, 2014, 03:08:47 PM
Here's what I've been waiting for - a 50L to 50A comparison from SLR Lounge (http://www.slrlounge.com/head2head-sigma-50mm-f1-4-dg-hsm-art-vs-canon-50mm-f1-2)

I think it's enough to convince me to cancel my pre-order.  The Sigma is sharper, but not shockingly so, and the Canon's bokeh is slightly better (IMHO).  The Canon also appears to have ever-so-slightly better contrast, while the Sigma has better CA control, but again, only by a hair.

The other thing I've learned is that you'll have buy the USB dock to enable full time manual focus (which I guess isn't standard for Sigmas).  That's crappy. 

The 50L has killer build quality and USM in a much smaller package and I don't think the Sigma is worth 950 of my dollars for such subtle differences at f/1.4 in what for me, is a portrait lens. 

I guess I can't cancel it till the 24th, so I'll keep my mind open until then, but I think I'm going to cancel and resume the 50L II vigil ;)

I agree that if I had the 50L, I'd stick with it. But for a first-time buyer of a high end 50mm, I think the Sigma would be the better choice. The price difference is very difficult to ignore.

Pretty surprising to me this, it seems to be very opposite from other places. And corner performance is the problem with the 50 L for me. If it had the same sharpness across the frame as it does in the center I would never sell it.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: JustMeOregon on April 14, 2014, 03:34:27 PM
Here's what I've been waiting for - a 50L to 50A comparison from SLR Lounge (http://www.slrlounge.com/head2head-sigma-50mm-f1-4-dg-hsm-art-vs-canon-50mm-f1-2)

I think it's enough to convince me to cancel my pre-order.  The Sigma is sharper, but not shockingly so, and the Canon's bokeh is slightly better (IMHO).  The Canon also appears to have ever-so-slightly better contrast, while the Sigma has better CA control, but again, only by a hair.

The other thing I've learned is that you'll have buy the USB dock to enable full time manual focus (which I guess isn't standard for Sigmas).  That's crappy. 

The 50L has killer build quality and USM in a much smaller package and I don't think the Sigma is worth 950 of my dollars for such subtle differences at f/1.4 in what for me, is a portrait lens. 

I guess I can't cancel it till the 24th, so I'll keep my mind open until then, but I think I'm going to cancel and resume the 50L II vigil ;)

Maybe I'm wrong, I just very quickly scanned the SLR Lounge review, but isn't he limiting his pixel-peeping to primarily the center of the frame? And isn't it the center of the frame where the Canon 50L is strongest?
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: mackguyver on April 14, 2014, 03:37:47 PM
Pretty surprising to me this, it seems to be very opposite from other places. And corner performance is the problem with the 50 L for me. If it had the same sharpness across the frame as it does in the center I would never sell it.
It does limit off center compositions, but neither of my copies have been as soft as the test charts would indicate and I find the middle 1/2 of the frame is acceptable wide open.  If I need to put something critical in the outer parts of the frame, I'll either crop or stop down to f/2.  At f/1.2, any shots that turn out soft are more likely my fault, not the lens' fault :)

Maybe I'm wrong, I just very quickly scanned the SLR Lounge review, but isn't he limiting his pixel-peeping to primarily the center of the frame? And isn't it the center of the frame where the Canon 50L is strongest?
No, you're right, but I still have no regrets on the cancellation.  $950 is still $950 and I have the 24-70 II for the subjects I shoot where corner sharpness is necessary (landscapes, buildings) and I'd be stopping down to at least f/11 for them anyways.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Viggo on April 14, 2014, 03:44:04 PM
Pretty surprising to me this, it seems to be very opposite from other places. And corner performance is the problem with the 50 L for me. If it had the same sharpness across the frame as it does in the center I would never sell it.
It does limit off center compositions, but neither of my copies have been as soft as the test charts would indicate and I find the middle 1/2 of the frame is acceptable wide open.  If I need to put something critical in the outer parts of the frame, I'll either crop or stop down to f/2.  At f/1.2, any shots that turn out soft are more likely my fault, not the lens' fault :)

Maybe I'm wrong, I just very quickly scanned the SLR Lounge review, but isn't he limiting his pixel-peeping to primarily the center of the frame? And isn't it the center of the frame where the Canon 50L is strongest?
No, you're right, but I still have no regrets on the cancellation.  $950 is still $950 and I have the 24-70 II for the subjects I shoot where corner sharpness is necessary (landscapes, buildings) and I'd be stopping down to at least f/11 for them anyways.

I have had 4 copies of the 50 L and they have all been great and VERY similar in all aspects. And I didn't like the off center sharpness, I kind of always want it to be the corner performer the 85 L is at the biggest apertures. And it seemed like the Sigma would cover that, but, hm, I'm not preordering at least :oP
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: jdramirez on April 14, 2014, 03:54:21 PM
I think what I was hoping for was f2.8 performance of the 50 f1.4 at f1.4 with the art. 
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: JustMeOregon on April 14, 2014, 03:55:59 PM
Quote
...but I still have no regrets on the cancellation.  $950 is still $950 and I have the 24-70 II for the subjects I shoot where corner sharpness is necessary (landscapes, buildings) and I'd be stopping down to at least f/11 for them anyways.

Makes sense... I'm sweating my pre-order of the 50A too. But I don't have a 50L to fall-back on (just a Canon 1.4 that I can't stomach using wider that 2.0) so I'm going to stay-the-course with my Sigma pre-order...
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: mackguyver on April 14, 2014, 03:59:04 PM
Quote
...but I still have no regrets on the cancellation.  $950 is still $950 and I have the 24-70 II for the subjects I shoot where corner sharpness is necessary (landscapes, buildings) and I'd be stopping down to at least f/11 for them anyways.

Makes sense... I'm sweating my pre-order of the 50A too. But I don't have a 50L to fall-back on (just a Canon 1.4 that I can't stomach using wider that 2.0) so I'm going to stay-the-course with my Sigma pre-order...
I think I'd keep the pre-order, too.  The 50 1.4 is a sweet lens, but I found that it had very little contrast until f/2 as well.  The build quality of the Sigma looks like it will be a really nice upgrade, though I think the size change will be a bit shocking for you.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: JustMeOregon on April 14, 2014, 04:03:50 PM
Quote
...I think the size change will be a bit shocking for you.

I'm sure that you're right! I guess I'll have to exercise my arm as well as my wallet...
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: jdramirez on April 14, 2014, 05:12:14 PM
Ignore all this... I'm talking to myself to see if I want to bother...

So the 100L is my favorite lens at the moment... If the 50 art's performance is on par with the 50L... then I'm looking at this difference in quality. 

Obviously the amount of light coming through is different, but that doesn't make a difference in a studio setup because I control the light...

So the center performance of the 50L at 1.4 is blown away by the 100L at f/2.8... no surprise there... and I do find that f/2.8 can be limited... and I'd like to go with a bigger aperture... so do the amount of times I find f/2.8 not acceptable worth the $950?

Or maybe I'll just nut up and get the 85L mkii.  Damn it.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Dylan777 on April 14, 2014, 05:32:36 PM
Ignore all this... I'm talking to myself to see if I want to bother...

So the 100L is my favorite lens at the moment... If the 50 art's performance is on par with the 50L... then I'm looking at this difference in quality. 

Obviously the amount of light coming through is different, but that doesn't make a difference in a studio setup because I control the light...

So the center performance of the 50L at 1.4 is blown away by the 100L at f/2.8... no surprise there... and I do find that f/2.8 can be limited... and I'd like to go with a bigger aperture... so do the amount of times I find f/2.8 not acceptable worth the $950?

Or maybe I'll just nut up and get the 85L mkii.  Damn it.

"nut up and get the 85L mkii" and be done with :P It will blow your 100L out of water.

Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Viggo on April 14, 2014, 06:03:42 PM
+1 for the 85 L, it makes a snapshot of your trashcan look like a pro commercial shot ;D
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Badger on April 14, 2014, 06:19:18 PM
I love all these new options coming to market! It seems if you already have a 50L no big deal, keep it. Question is, will anyone still buy the 50L for an extra $600 over the 50A? Is the bokeh $600 better if you don't already have the 50L? Not so sure.
50A is now on my list (along with a bunch of other lenses). Starting my letter to Santa now!
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Viggo on April 14, 2014, 06:42:42 PM
I love all these new options coming to market! It seems if you already have a 50L no big deal, keep it. Question is, will anyone still buy the 50L for an extra $600 over the 50A? Is the bokeh $600 better if you don't already have the 50L? Not so sure.
50A is now on my list (along with a bunch of other lenses). Starting my letter to Santa now!

We will see loads of used 50 L's in the following months, here it's now only 200 usd more than the new 50 Art.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Dylan777 on April 14, 2014, 07:39:57 PM
I love all these new options coming to market! It seems if you already have a 50L no big deal, keep it. Question is, will anyone still buy the 50L for an extra $600 over the 50A? Is the bokeh $600 better if you don't already have the 50L? Not so sure.
50A is now on my list (along with a bunch of other lenses). Starting my letter to Santa now!

To be honest, if I don't have 50L yet, this new Sigma is very tempting. I can't believe I just said that :-X
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Dylan777 on April 14, 2014, 07:44:19 PM
+1 for the 85 L, it makes a snapshot of your trashcan look like a pro commercial shot ;D

I know Canon has another lens that can make this trash can looks even BETTER.... take a guess ;D

Thanks Viggo ;)
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: CarlMillerPhoto on April 14, 2014, 07:57:10 PM
Here's what I've been waiting for - a 50L to 50A comparison from SLR Lounge (http://www.slrlounge.com/head2head-sigma-50mm-f1-4-dg-hsm-art-vs-canon-50mm-f1-2)

I think it's enough to convince me to cancel my pre-order.  The Sigma is sharper, but not shockingly so, and the Canon's bokeh is slightly better (IMHO).  The Canon also appears to have ever-so-slightly better contrast, while the Sigma has better CA control, but again, only by a hair.

The other thing I've learned is that you'll have buy the USB dock to enable full time manual focus (which I guess isn't standard for Sigmas).  That's crappy. 

The 50L has killer build quality and USM in a much smaller package and I don't think the Sigma is worth 950 of my dollars for such subtle differences at f/1.4 in what for me, is a portrait lens. 

I guess I can't cancel it till the 24th, so I'll keep my mind open until then, but I think I'm going to cancel and resume the 50L II vigil ;)

Here's a more scientific comparison of sharpness. Seems the Sigma vs Canon L decision is really sharpness vs. bokeh, respectfully. If I had a 50L I probably wouldn't sell, but since I don't, I'm still super excited about my preorder :)

http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/ISO-12233-Sample-Crops.aspx?Lens=941&Camera=453&Sample=0&FLI=0&API=2&LensComp=403&CameraComp=453&SampleComp=0&FLIComp=0&APIComp=1 (http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/ISO-12233-Sample-Crops.aspx?Lens=941&Camera=453&Sample=0&FLI=0&API=2&LensComp=403&CameraComp=453&SampleComp=0&FLIComp=0&APIComp=1)
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: tatsu on April 14, 2014, 09:00:21 PM
If I had a 50L I probably wouldn't sell, but since I don't, I'm still super excited about my preorder :)

That's where I'm at too.  Especially since any upcoming 50L MkII is going to be priced sky high. 
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: mackguyver on April 14, 2014, 09:49:30 PM
+1 for the 85 L, it makes a snapshot of your trashcan look like a pro commercial shot ;D

I know Canon has another lens that can make this trash can looks even BETTER.... take a guess ;D

Thanks Viggo ;)
Say 200mm f/2 IS and you're done!

Here's a more scientific comparison of sharpness. Seems the Sigma vs Canon L decision is really sharpness vs. bokeh, respectfully. If I had a 50L I probably wouldn't sell, but since I don't, I'm still super excited about my preorder :)

http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/ISO-12233-Sample-Crops.aspx?Lens=941&Camera=453&Sample=0&FLI=0&API=2&LensComp=403&CameraComp=453&SampleComp=0&FLIComp=0&APIComp=1 (http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/ISO-12233-Sample-Crops.aspx?Lens=941&Camera=453&Sample=0&FLI=0&API=2&LensComp=403&CameraComp=453&SampleComp=0&FLIComp=0&APIComp=1)
Cool to see this, but still still won't change my 50L love 8)  I'll stay off in la la land and pretend a sharper 50mm (or two) don't exist :o

In all seriousness, the 50L a great lens for my uses (portraits and walkaround, but I'm sure the new Sigma will be quite a lens.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Radiating on April 14, 2014, 11:23:15 PM
Here's what I've been waiting for - a 50L to 50A comparison from SLR Lounge (http://www.slrlounge.com/head2head-sigma-50mm-f1-4-dg-hsm-art-vs-canon-50mm-f1-2)

I think it's enough to convince me to cancel my pre-order.  The Sigma is sharper, but not shockingly so, and the Canon's bokeh is slightly better (IMHO).  The Canon also appears to have ever-so-slightly better contrast, while the Sigma has better CA control, but again, only by a hair.

The other thing I've learned is that you'll have buy the USB dock to enable full time manual focus (which I guess isn't standard for Sigmas).  That's crappy. 

The 50L has killer build quality and USM in a much smaller package and I don't think the Sigma is worth 950 of my dollars for such subtle differences at f/1.4 in what for me, is a portrait lens. 

I guess I can't cancel it till the 24th, so I'll keep my mind open until then, but I think I'm going to cancel and resume the 50L II vigil ;)

Here's a more scientific comparison of sharpness. Seems the Sigma vs Canon L decision is really sharpness vs. bokeh, respectfully. If I had a 50L I probably wouldn't sell, but since I don't, I'm still super excited about my preorder :)

http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/ISO-12233-Sample-Crops.aspx?Lens=941&Camera=453&Sample=0&FLI=0&API=2&LensComp=403&CameraComp=453&SampleComp=0&FLIComp=0&APIComp=1 (http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/ISO-12233-Sample-Crops.aspx?Lens=941&Camera=453&Sample=0&FLI=0&API=2&LensComp=403&CameraComp=453&SampleComp=0&FLIComp=0&APIComp=1)

I think the slr lounge images really do not show what the difference between these two lenses is really like, they have low contrast and are far too smooth subjects. The images from the digital picture are much more staggering.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: brad-man on April 14, 2014, 11:29:27 PM
Here's what I've been waiting for - a 50L to 50A comparison from SLR Lounge (http://www.slrlounge.com/head2head-sigma-50mm-f1-4-dg-hsm-art-vs-canon-50mm-f1-2)

I think it's enough to convince me to cancel my pre-order.  The Sigma is sharper, but not shockingly so, and the Canon's bokeh is slightly better (IMHO).  The Canon also appears to have ever-so-slightly better contrast, while the Sigma has better CA control, but again, only by a hair.

The other thing I've learned is that you'll have buy the USB dock to enable full time manual focus (which I guess isn't standard for Sigmas).  That's crappy. 

The 50L has killer build quality and USM in a much smaller package and I don't think the Sigma is worth 950 of my dollars for such subtle differences at f/1.4 in what for me, is a portrait lens. 

I guess I can't cancel it till the 24th, so I'll keep my mind open until then, but I think I'm going to cancel and resume the 50L II vigil ;)

Here's a more scientific comparison of sharpness. Seems the Sigma vs Canon L decision is really sharpness vs. bokeh, respectfully. If I had a 50L I probably wouldn't sell, but since I don't, I'm still super excited about my preorder :)

http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/ISO-12233-Sample-Crops.aspx?Lens=941&Camera=453&Sample=0&FLI=0&API=2&LensComp=403&CameraComp=453&SampleComp=0&FLIComp=0&APIComp=1 (http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/ISO-12233-Sample-Crops.aspx?Lens=941&Camera=453&Sample=0&FLI=0&API=2&LensComp=403&CameraComp=453&SampleComp=0&FLIComp=0&APIComp=1)

Wow. Just wow. What a lens. I can't imagine that anyone other than brand loyalists will opt for the 50L after seeing this comparison. I have and love the 35A, and while I do want to upgrade my 50/1.4, I think I'll wait and see what Canon's new IS version is like. I'd like to have some primes that are more travel-friendly and inconspicuous. Although when Sigma releases the 85A, all bets are off...
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Viggo on April 15, 2014, 02:59:22 AM
+1 for the 85 L, it makes a snapshot of your trashcan look like a pro commercial shot ;D

I know Canon has another lens that can make this trash can looks even BETTER.... take a guess ;D

Thanks Viggo ;)
Say 200mm f/2 IS and you're done!

Here's a more scientific comparison of sharpness. Seems the Sigma vs Canon L decision is really sharpness vs. bokeh, respectfully. If I had a 50L I probably wouldn't sell, but since I don't, I'm still super excited about my preorder :)

http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/ISO-12233-Sample-Crops.aspx?Lens=941&Camera=453&Sample=0&FLI=0&API=2&LensComp=403&CameraComp=453&SampleComp=0&FLIComp=0&APIComp=1 (http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/ISO-12233-Sample-Crops.aspx?Lens=941&Camera=453&Sample=0&FLI=0&API=2&LensComp=403&CameraComp=453&SampleComp=0&FLIComp=0&APIComp=1)
Cool to see this, but still still won't change my 50L love 8)  I'll stay off in la la land and pretend a sharper 50mm (or two) don't exist :o

In all seriousness, the 50L a great lens for my uses (portraits and walkaround, but I'm sure the new Sigma will be quite a lens.

Lol! That was (not surprisingly) going to be my next guess. I'll have to wait and see more from the 50 art, but I downloaded the Zip and checked out the raw's. It seems the 50 L is brighter at same exif, which I like, and the samples are not in very controlled setting, the light has changed and it's much harder to tell, but I thought it would be MUCH better. Maybe he has a dud?
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Viggo on April 15, 2014, 03:57:09 AM
Apologize if this has already been posted, but to me this has been the most useful comparison and breakdown yet:

http://lcap.tistory.com/entry/Sigma-50mm-f14-dg-hsm-Art-Review (http://lcap.tistory.com/entry/Sigma-50mm-f14-dg-hsm-Art-Review)
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: candyman on April 15, 2014, 04:10:33 AM
Apologize if this has already been posted, but to me this has been the most useful comparison and breakdown yet:

http://lcap.tistory.com/entry/Sigma-50mm-f14-dg-hsm-Art-Review (http://lcap.tistory.com/entry/Sigma-50mm-f14-dg-hsm-Art-Review)

I agree.
btw it was already posted
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Viggo on April 15, 2014, 04:16:27 AM
Apologize if this has already been posted, but to me this has been the most useful comparison and breakdown yet:

http://lcap.tistory.com/entry/Sigma-50mm-f14-dg-hsm-Art-Review (http://lcap.tistory.com/entry/Sigma-50mm-f14-dg-hsm-Art-Review)

I agree.
btw it was already posted

Okay, thanks!

I see a few other sites that do sample images but they front or back focus and overexpose and do NO editing, and to me that misrepresents what one could actually get. IF they want to post samples that are untouched, they should at least focus properly and provide the original raw's for us to play with.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Ruined on April 15, 2014, 06:00:52 AM
Here's what I've been waiting for - a 50L to 50A comparison from SLR Lounge (http://www.slrlounge.com/head2head-sigma-50mm-f1-4-dg-hsm-art-vs-canon-50mm-f1-2)

I think it's enough to convince me to cancel my pre-order.  The Sigma is sharper, but not shockingly so, and the Canon's bokeh is slightly better (IMHO).  The Canon also appears to have ever-so-slightly better contrast, while the Sigma has better CA control, but again, only by a hair.

The other thing I've learned is that you'll have buy the USB dock to enable full time manual focus (which I guess isn't standard for Sigmas).  That's crappy. 

The 50L has killer build quality and USM in a much smaller package and I don't think the Sigma is worth 950 of my dollars for such subtle differences at f/1.4 in what for me, is a portrait lens. 

I guess I can't cancel it till the 24th, so I'll keep my mind open until then, but I think I'm going to cancel and resume the 50L II vigil ;)

This is exactly what I expected.  Sigma very slightly sharper, Canon better bokeh.

IMO no comparison if price not an issue, the Canon f/1.2L is the better lens.  Although I got my Canon for $1200 during the rebate season.

Reasons:

* Minimal difference in sharpness/CA
* Canon has better bokeh
* My bet is on Canon for faster autofocus
* Canon does f/1.2, sigma does not
* Canon is much smaller, and probably built better
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: beetle on April 15, 2014, 07:01:09 AM
A short comparison between 35 Art and 50 Art. Conclusion as expected: almost the same optical quality.

http://www.thephoblographer.com/2014/04/14/one-sigma-50mm-f1-4-dg-hsm-art-35mm-f1-4-dg-hsm-art/#.U00P5Sfrpf8 (http://www.thephoblographer.com/2014/04/14/one-sigma-50mm-f1-4-dg-hsm-art-35mm-f1-4-dg-hsm-art/#.U00P5Sfrpf8)
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: candyman on April 15, 2014, 07:20:54 AM
Apologize if this has already been posted, but to me this has been the most useful comparison and breakdown yet:

http://lcap.tistory.com/entry/Sigma-50mm-f14-dg-hsm-Art-Review (http://lcap.tistory.com/entry/Sigma-50mm-f14-dg-hsm-Art-Review)

I agree.
btw it was already posted

Okay, thanks!

I see a few other sites that do sample images but they front or back focus and overexpose and do NO editing, and to me that misrepresents what one could actually get. IF they want to post samples that are untouched, they should at least focus properly and provide the original raw's for us to play with.


100% correct. I guess this is showing what sites do proper review and therefor are relevant source
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: jdramirez on April 15, 2014, 08:20:27 AM
What happened to this 240% better than any existing 50mm except for the otus.  I'd 240 a made up number or is it simply not that consequential? 

@ruined... none of us have had the lens in hand.  I remember jumping g the gun in the 6d thinking it was basically the 5dmkii in a poly carbonate frame... I was wrong and the 6d has a nice little niche.  I am holding judgement until I have one in hand... maybe at the b&h super store. 

I really don't want to have to compose ALL my shots in the center where the lens is acceptably sharp.  And I think discussing auto focus and build quality is way too premature. 

I guess I don't feel like declaring a winner before the race has even been run.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: jdramirez on April 15, 2014, 08:23:04 AM
When I saw the one sample shot where the coin or what ever it was was in different lighting than the other... I was annoyed. I was a science major in college and it seems pretty obvious that a variable you want to control for is lighting.

Apologize if this has already been posted, but to me this has been the most useful comparison and breakdown yet:

http://lcap.tistory.com/entry/Sigma-50mm-f14-dg-hsm-Art-Review (http://lcap.tistory.com/entry/Sigma-50mm-f14-dg-hsm-Art-Review)

I agree.
btw it was already posted

Okay, thanks!

I see a few other sites that do sample images but they front or back focus and overexpose and do NO editing, and to me that misrepresents what one could actually get. IF they want to post samples that are untouched, they should at least focus properly and provide the original raw's for us to play with.


100% correct. I guess this is showing what sites do proper review and therefor are relevant source
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: aznable on April 15, 2014, 09:25:57 AM
Here's what I've been waiting for - a 50L to 50A comparison from SLR Lounge (http://www.slrlounge.com/head2head-sigma-50mm-f1-4-dg-hsm-art-vs-canon-50mm-f1-2)

I think it's enough to convince me to cancel my pre-order.  The Sigma is sharper, but not shockingly so, and the Canon's bokeh is slightly better (IMHO).  The Canon also appears to have ever-so-slightly better contrast, while the Sigma has better CA control, but again, only by a hair.

The other thing I've learned is that you'll have buy the USB dock to enable full time manual focus (which I guess isn't standard for Sigmas).  That's crappy. 

The 50L has killer build quality and USM in a much smaller package and I don't think the Sigma is worth 950 of my dollars for such subtle differences at f/1.4 in what for me, is a portrait lens. 

I guess I can't cancel it till the 24th, so I'll keep my mind open until then, but I think I'm going to cancel and resume the 50L II vigil ;)

This is exactly what I expected.  Sigma very slightly sharper, Canon better bokeh.

IMO no comparison if price not an issue, the Canon f/1.2L is the better lens.  Although I got my Canon for $1200 during the rebate season.

Reasons:

* Minimal difference in sharpness/CA
* Canon has better bokeh
* My bet is on Canon for faster autofocus
* Canon does f/1.2, sigma does not
* Canon is much smaller, and probably built better

you can take a look to a more scientific review

http://slrgear.com/reviews/showproduct.php/product/1677/cat/30 (http://slrgear.com/reviews/showproduct.php/product/1677/cat/30)

the canon 1.2L is destroied on sharpness in the corners

Quote
The Sigma 50/1.4 Art's sharpness holds up very well against the sub-$2,000 competition, as well. At ƒ/1.4 and on a full-frame camera, it pretty well blows all of the others out of the water. The Canon 50/1.2L is pretty sharp in the center, but the corners are extremely soft.

Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: infared on April 15, 2014, 10:00:19 AM
hmmmmm....I am a huge fan of my Sigma 35mm Art on my 5DIII....LOVE that lens.   I have to say...after seeing the comparison to the 50L I can actually see some photogarphers preferring the rendition of the 50L...especially for portraiture, perhaps. You better REALLY love it though as it comes at a hefty price premium. (If I REALLY need background smearing I go to the 85L, when possible).  ..I own the original Sigma 50mm f/1.4, and I have really been happy with my copy from the stand point of build, size, weight, price and general image quality. Couldn't see paying for the 50L at the time (as I have the 85L)....and would not go near the other Canon 50mm's...but I would love to see a comparison of the new Sigma 50mm vs. the old Sigma 50mm.  I know the new one should totally kill it in the corners....  I will probably buy the new one when all the hoopala dies down....and maybe save $50.
This sure is fun.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: mackguyver on April 15, 2014, 10:38:39 AM
...but I would love to see a comparison of the new Sigma 50mm vs. the old Sigma 50mm.  I know
This sure is fun.
Here's a brief one from the Phoblographer: Which One? Sigma 50mm f1.4 I vs Sigma 50mm f1.4 II Art
Read (http://www.thephoblographer.com/2014/04/13/one-sigma-50mm-f1-4-vs-sigma-50mm-f1-4-ii-art/#z0CdpYhsaHwMXdde.99)


the canon 1.2L is destroied on sharpness in the corners

Agreed, but there is another factor - the 50L has field curvature (not a good thing), but it's why it performs so poorly on test charts, and yet doesn't translate to being that soft in actual shots.  It looks like the Sigma has much better correction for field curvature, and while the 50L is a pain to deal with (focus and recompose at f/1.2 is all but impossible), real-world subjects aren't flat.  With a good body that has AFMA, if you use a cross-type point and lock focus, the results are much better than what you see on the charts. 

I'm not going to defend the 50L as it has plenty of weaknesses (field curvature being the biggest, followed by CA), but what you see in the flat test charts and real photos aren't 1:1.  I'm concerned with results and from what I've seen so far, I don't think the Sigma is going to be a significant improvement over the 50L unless you're putting important subjects in the corners of the frame or shooting flat subjects.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Radiating on April 15, 2014, 11:55:58 AM
Here's what I've been waiting for - a 50L to 50A comparison from SLR Lounge (http://www.slrlounge.com/head2head-sigma-50mm-f1-4-dg-hsm-art-vs-canon-50mm-f1-2)

I think it's enough to convince me to cancel my pre-order.  The Sigma is sharper, but not shockingly so, and the Canon's bokeh is slightly better (IMHO).  The Canon also appears to have ever-so-slightly better contrast, while the Sigma has better CA control, but again, only by a hair.

The other thing I've learned is that you'll have buy the USB dock to enable full time manual focus (which I guess isn't standard for Sigmas).  That's crappy. 

The 50L has killer build quality and USM in a much smaller package and I don't think the Sigma is worth 950 of my dollars for such subtle differences at f/1.4 in what for me, is a portrait lens. 

I guess I can't cancel it till the 24th, so I'll keep my mind open until then, but I think I'm going to cancel and resume the 50L II vigil ;)

This is exactly what I expected.  Sigma very slightly sharper, Canon better bokeh.

IMO no comparison if price not an issue, the Canon f/1.2L is the better lens.  Although I got my Canon for $1200 during the rebate season.

Reasons:

* Minimal difference in sharpness/CA
* Canon has better bokeh
* My bet is on Canon for faster autofocus
* Canon does f/1.2, sigma does not
* Canon is much smaller, and probably built better

You really are taking the wrong conclusion from this. There is a huge difference in sharpness and CA.

The SLRlounge comparison is to be frank one of the worst comparison between two lenses that I have ever seen published. Not only are the compositions all different, all the shots were hand held, not on a tripod and have different subject sizes, but the only 100% comparison is from the absolute center of the lens on a subject with little contrast. The rest are ultra small thumbnails that do not show any detail.

Here's something a little more revealing. I  took the liberty of downloading the SLR lounge images, and applying a typical lightroom preset I like to use to both (increased clarity and contrast and sharpness), I then played with the color correction independently, as the Canon delivered 200k difference in temperature)

I cropped both images to half the frame, to show detail better, and actually the Sigma required 10% tighter cropping, because again images from that review were not framed the same. So keep in mind this comparison actually has the Sigma at a 10% disadvantage.  Despite that the Sigma is way way sharper. (both are at f/1.4)

(http://www5.picturepush.com/photo/a/14117183/img/Picture-Box/20140413-IMG-3156.jpg)

(http://www4.picturepush.com/photo/a/14116952/img/Picture-Box/20140413-IMG-3159.jpg)

I also recommend opening up these images in separate tabs and switching back and forth:

http://www4.picturepush.com/photo/a/14116952/img/Picture-Box/20140413-IMG-3159.jpg (http://www4.picturepush.com/photo/a/14116952/img/Picture-Box/20140413-IMG-3159.jpg)

http://www5.picturepush.com/photo/a/14117183/img/Picture-Box/20140413-IMG-3156.jpg (http://www5.picturepush.com/photo/a/14117183/img/Picture-Box/20140413-IMG-3156.jpg)

Keep in mind these are not a 100% crop. This is a normal image at web resolution with only a half frame crop, like you'd get from turning a waist up shot into a chest up shot.

The difference is about as subtle as a lightning strike. I have no idea how anyone would conclude that they are remotely close. You can't even see the detail in the brick wall with the Canon, and the haziness and red glow of the Canon is very visible especially on contrasty corners like on that cement wall edge. And this is something you see obviously at web resolution.

Here's a more professional comparison between the L and the ART from Bryan at the digital picture:

(http://media.the-digital-picture.com/Images/Lens-Tests/ISO-12233/Sigma-50mm-f-1.4-DG-HSM-Art-Lens/Crop2/2014-04-14_08-21-17.jpg)

(http://media.the-digital-picture.com/Images/Lens-Tests/ISO-12233/Canon-EF-50mm-f-1.2-L-USM-Lens/Crop2/2008-08-18-22-02-53.jpg)

It's night and day, I don't know how else to say that.

The Sigma 50mm f/1.4 ART is as sharp WIDE OPEN as the 50mm f/1.2L is at f/4.0

Sigma @f/1.4:
(http://media.the-digital-picture.com/Images/Lens-Tests/ISO-12233/Sigma-50mm-f-1.4-DG-HSM-Art-Lens/Crop1/2014-04-14_08-19-59.jpg)
(http://media.the-digital-picture.com/Images/Lens-Tests/ISO-12233/Sigma-50mm-f-1.4-DG-HSM-Art-Lens/Crop2/2014-04-14_08-19-59.jpg)

Canon @ f/4.0:
(http://media.the-digital-picture.com/Images/Lens-Tests/ISO-12233/Canon-EF-50mm-f-1.2-L-USM-Lens/Crop1/2008-12-13_13-12-33.jpg)
(http://media.the-digital-picture.com/Images/Lens-Tests/ISO-12233/Canon-EF-50mm-f-1.2-L-USM-Lens/Crop2/2008-12-13_13-12-33.jpg)

Bokeh is subjective so I won't address that, but technical tests have shown that the Canon 50mm f/1.2L has bokeh that isn't as smooth as the new Sigma. Some people like that, some people don't.

F/1.2 on a digital camera isn't really f/1.2 though. All digital sensors unlike film ignore the majority of the additional light that arrives at the lens after f/2.0, because they absorb instead of capture light at high angles of incidence which is where the additional light at fast apertures comes from. So the body simply raise the ISO in the background to compensate so your exposure calculations are the same.

(http://www.dxomark.com/itext/insights_tstop/Tstop3.jpg)

There is also some rounding up that goes on with the Canon's f number, and with the Sigma they are actually rounding down the f number, so they are much closer than they seem aperture wise, though the Canon will have less vignette. The 50mm f/1.2L only lets around 10% more light hit the sensor than the 50mm f/1.4 ART, for all intents and purposes there is no difference.

The Canon also probably isn't built better, historical the 50L f/1.2 has been 3 times less reliable than the Sigma 35mm f/1.4, which is pretty bad.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: mackguyver on April 15, 2014, 12:43:50 PM
The Canon also probably isn't built better, it's 3 times less reliable than the Sigma 35mm f/1.4, which is pretty bad.
Radiating, those are mostly good and valid points, but where did you get this last stat? 

While digital sensors may let less of the oblique light hit the sensor, for you to say that f/1.2 "on a digital camera is a lie" is simply false and a one-dimensional interpretation.  The DxO 'fast lenses are for idiots' essay (http://www.dxomark.com/Reviews/F-stop-blues) has one major flaw - depth of field.  That's why fast lenses are still relevant and why Sigma & co. are still making fast lenses in a time when the 200-400 1.4x is being used to cover indoor sports.

I'm not saying f/1.2 and f/1.4 are far apart, but f/1.2 and f/2 sure are, even if they are letting the same amount of light reach the sensor.  It probably needs to be updated, too, as microlenses and other factors may have changed things somewhat, at least if we're to believe some of the manufacturer's (Panasonic & Leica) literature.

Finally, science, graphs, test chart shots, and lousy comparisons aside, what really matters is the photo.  We can spend our entire lives measurebating, but that's just a sad way to live. 

I'm going to hold onto my 50L because it takes beautiful portraits and if I need sharper photos, I have plenty of lenses for that.  I'm positive the Sigma will be an excellent lens and take beautiful portraits as well.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: jdramirez on April 15, 2014, 01:14:53 PM


Finally, science, graphs, test chart shots, and lousy comparisons aside, what really matters is the photo.  We can spend our entire lives measurebating, but that's just a sad way to live. 

Measure bating... nice.

The 50L brings out such passion in people... I haven't liked it since I read that the 50 usm is as sharp.  So I've been biased a while... but I'm trying to not let that cloud my judgement one way or another.  I'd like a 50, but I don't need a fifty... so this is just a luxury purchase... but the article was so antithetical to everything that has come out or been rumored.

It felt biased... from the moment they were photographing a dandelion outdoors.  A slight gust of wind will change the location of the subject... not to mention, the dandelion is so blurry to begin with that it is hard to tell exactly where they were focusing.  And if they did hand hold, that is just irresponsible.  Neither lens has is and while the photographer may be competent... I trust a good tripod more.

Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: mackguyver on April 15, 2014, 01:43:56 PM
I trust a good tripod more.
That's the only real way to get the sharpest of shots!  I agree about the passion / hate for the 50L and the only issue I have with the haters are that many of them have never used the lens or if they have it's been in passing.  Others have used the lens and just don't like, and that's fine, we're all entitled to our own opinions.  I don't like the sacred 35L, but I've seen mind-blowing photos taken with it.  My gear list is different than just about anyone else's just as my photos are different than anyone else's. 

Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: mackguyver on April 15, 2014, 04:03:28 PM
The Canon also probably isn't built better, it's 3 times less reliable than the Sigma 35mm f/1.4, which is pretty bad.
Radiating, those are mostly good and valid points, but where did you get this last stat? 
Ah, I see, it must have come from the LensRentals Repair Data 3.0 (http://www.lensrentals.com/blog/2009/05/lens-repair-data-3-0) post, but it says, "Two lenses (the Canon 50mm f/1.2 and the Sigma 100-300) have behaved so well they’ve dropped below the 10% repair rate cutoff."
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Radiating on April 15, 2014, 04:13:17 PM
The Canon also probably isn't built better, it's 3 times less reliable than the Sigma 35mm f/1.4, which is pretty bad.
Radiating, those are mostly good and valid points, but where did you get this last stat? 
Ah, I see, it must have come from the LensRentals Repair Data 3.0 (http://www.lensrentals.com/blog/2009/05/lens-repair-data-3-0) post, but it says, "Two lenses (the Canon 50mm f/1.2 and the Sigma 100-300) have behaved so well they’ve dropped below the 10% repair rate cutoff."

Correct. Lens rentals keeps track of how reliable their collection of 12,000 lenses are. Of the 700 models of lenses they have, the 50mm f/1.2L has been listed on their worst list, or just barley made it off the list depending on the year. The Sigma 35mm has had dead average reliability with lens rentals, which roughly translates to being 3 times more reliable.

Quote
While digital sensors may let less of the oblique light hit the sensor, for you to say that f/1.2 "on a digital camera is a lie" is simply false and a one-dimensional interpretation.  The DxO 'fast lenses are for idiots' essay (http://www.dxomark.com/Reviews/F-stop-blues) has one major flaw - depth of field.  That's why fast lenses are still relevant and why Sigma & co. are still making fast lenses in a time when the 200-400 1.4x is being used to cover indoor sports.

I'm not saying f/1.2 and f/1.4 are far apart, but f/1.2 and f/2 sure are, even if they are letting the same amount of light reach the sensor.  It probably needs to be updated, too, as microlenses and other factors may have changed things somewhat, at least if we're to believe some of the manufacturer's (Panasonic & Leica) literature.

Finally, science, graphs, test chart shots, and lousy comparisons aside, what really matters is the photo.  We can spend our entire lives measurebating, but that's just a sad way to live. 

I'm going to hold onto my 50L because it takes beautiful portraits and if I need sharper photos, I have plenty of lenses for that.  I'm positive the Sigma will be an excellent lens and take beautiful portraits as well.

Keep in mind the light reject by digital sensors at fast apertures is the same light that is responsible for additional background blur with a fast lens. So not only do you have a fraction of the low light performance you'd expect but you have a fraction of the additional background blur you'd expect.

For all intents and purposes there isn't a meaningful difference between the 50L @ f/1.2 and f/1.4:

f/1.4
(http://www4.picturepush.com/photo/a/13965847/img/Picture-Box/f14.jpg)

f/1.2
(http://www5.picturepush.com/photo/a/13965848/img/Picture-Box/f12.jpg)
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: mackguyver on April 15, 2014, 04:46:06 PM
Those shots are from the 85mm f/1.2 II and I had already acknowledged that the difference between f/1.2 and f/1.4 is small.  While I don't think one set of photos that you keep posting is the definitive answer on this, I certainly don't expect a half stop do persuade anyone to buy the Canon over the Sigma.  The same set of photos does show a noticeable difference between f/1.2 or 1.4 and f/2, however, which was the point I was making.  If we're to follow DxO's essay, we're all idiots for buying fast lenses.  If they got out of the lab more, they might realize that shallow DOF is the reason that fast lenses are still relevant.

I understand on the LensRentals data - their blog isn't tagged the best, but I see it come up when I Google it.  I'm not sure how well rental durability translates to real life, but it's failure rate is still tiny compared to the worst offenders.  The Sigma 50 A looks like it's built well and I'm sure that won't be a differentiator, either. 
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: ahsanford on April 15, 2014, 04:49:19 PM

I know some of TDP's data has been discussed, but just today Bryan Carnathan put up some convenient head to heads in the 50mm range:

http://www.the-digital-picture.com/News/News-Post.aspx?News=9491 (http://www.the-digital-picture.com/News/News-Post.aspx?News=9491)

Compares the 50 Art against a host of 50-55mm alternatives.

- A
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: GMCPhotographics on April 15, 2014, 04:55:41 PM
There aren't any really obvious winners and losers here, just a personal choice of where you want your strengths and compromises to sit. I've used a 50L for many years and It's been a reliable work horse. I don't reach for it when i'm after critical sharpness. No, I reach for it when I want that certain creamy bokeh type of look. It's that kind of lens and it does it really well. It's contrast, colour fidelity, build and flare control are exceptional. I've not had any build issues with mine and neither has my 2nd photographer. But i have heard of some other pro's having issues with the front dust cap coming off with the hood. This I believe was due to a defective batch from Canon and were offered free repairs.

Has anyone else noticed the focal lens difference between the Canon and Sigma. The 50L is slightly long for a 50mm....closer to a 55mm to my eyes. The Sigma looks a little wide, maybe 45mm? Could be an issue if you are pairing it with a 35mm and not a 24mm.

I'm not a big 50mm user any more. I far prefer using a 35mm / 85mm combo on a pair of 5DIII's than a 24mm / 50mm option.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Shane1.4 on April 15, 2014, 05:59:21 PM
Just sold my Canon 50 1.4 on craigslist for $315.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Ewinter on April 15, 2014, 06:16:52 PM
Got My 50A Preordered on an intense deal, actually half of the UK retail of a 50L. I'm happy with that.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: jdramirez on April 15, 2014, 06:35:41 PM
Just sold my Canon 50 1.4 on craigslist for $315.
How much did you pay for it originally?

the cheapest I've ever bought it new was $285... so that would been a nice thirty dollar profit.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Ruined on April 15, 2014, 08:42:49 PM

Minimal difference in sharpness/CA  ?

http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/ISO-12233-Sample-Crops.aspx?Lens=941&Camera=453&Sample=0&FLI=0&API=0&LensComp=403&CameraComp=453&SampleComp=0&FLIComp=0&APIComp=1 (http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/ISO-12233-Sample-Crops.aspx?Lens=941&Camera=453&Sample=0&FLI=0&API=0&LensComp=403&CameraComp=453&SampleComp=0&FLIComp=0&APIComp=1)

Correct, difference is minimal given everything I've seen thus far - unless you make a living shooting flat sharpness test charts.

The 50 f/1.2L was designed with uncorrected field curvature+spherical aberration with a priority on bokeh.

If you shoot flat test charts, that could be a problem.  But since things we shoot generally are not a flat test chart and do have depth, real world performance in the shots I have seen appear to have minimal difference sharpness/CA.  Wide open the Sigma does have a slight advantage in sharpness/CA real world use, but I expected that given the larger f/1.4 retrofocal design - at narrower apertures the Canon actually appears to pull ahead of the Sigma in sharpness (likely due to reduction of field curvature).

Field curvature does not make a lens subpar even though it will not perform as well on a test chart (just ask the $10k+ Leica Noctilux).  In the end, the real world performance is what counts.  And, some lenses will sacrifice some test chart sharpness/aberrations for superior bokeh and real world performance.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: jdramirez on April 15, 2014, 09:11:07 PM
I suppose it is time for me to drop out of this conversation... I just bought an 85L mkii... so... I guess the 50mm sigma wasn't meant to be.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Dylan777 on April 15, 2014, 09:38:54 PM
I suppose it is time for me to drop out of this conversation... I just bought an 85L mkii... so... I guess the 50mm sigma wasn't meant to be.

Congrats JD ;) You gonna LOVE this lens. Post some photos whenever you ready.

I took Neuro advice and bought B&W 3stop ND filter for this lens. Shooting wide open in day time is fun.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Grumbaki on April 15, 2014, 09:46:11 PM
I suppose it is time for me to drop out of this conversation... I just bought an 85L mkii... so... I guess the 50mm sigma wasn't meant to be.

Grats on the awesomest piece of loot from the Canon cave. But if you really want a sigma you can always join the 35/85 club ;)
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: jdramirez on April 15, 2014, 10:08:08 PM
Congrats JD ;) You gonna LOVE this lens. Post some photos whenever you ready.

I took Neuro advice and bought B&W 3stop ND filter for this lens. Shooting wide open in day time is fun.

Thanks.  That's not a bad idea re: the filter.  I like my f/2.8 lenses... but there is just something fun about shooting at f/1.4 or f/1.8... and now I can push that to f/1.2. 

Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: mackguyver on April 15, 2014, 10:32:51 PM
I suppose it is time for me to drop out of this conversation... I just bought an 85L mkii... so... I guess the 50mm sigma wasn't meant to be.
Congrats, you'll love it.  It took me a long time to build up the nerve to buy it, but I had no regrets from the moment I saw the first photo.  In fact, my wife will only let me shoot her with that lens because she loves how the photos turn out with it.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Dylan777 on April 15, 2014, 10:33:24 PM
Congrats JD ;) You gonna LOVE this lens. Post some photos whenever you ready.

I took Neuro advice and bought B&W 3stop ND filter for this lens. Shooting wide open in day time is fun.

Thanks.  That's not a bad idea re: the filter.  I like my f/2.8 lenses... but there is just something fun about shooting at f/1.4 or f/1.8... and now I can push that to f/1.2.

You paid big $$$ for that f1.2, make sure you use it right ;D. This lens shines @ f1.2 - period.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Dylan777 on April 15, 2014, 10:34:50 PM
I suppose it is time for me to drop out of this conversation... I just bought an 85L mkii... so... I guess the 50mm sigma wasn't meant to be.
Congrats, you'll love it.  It took me a long time to build up the nerve to buy it, but I had no regrets from the moment I saw the first photo.  In fact, my wife will only let me shoot her with that lens because she loves how the photos turn out with it.

+1....  ;)

Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Radiating on April 15, 2014, 11:03:41 PM

Minimal difference in sharpness/CA  ?

http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/ISO-12233-Sample-Crops.aspx?Lens=941&Camera=453&Sample=0&FLI=0&API=0&LensComp=403&CameraComp=453&SampleComp=0&FLIComp=0&APIComp=1 (http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/ISO-12233-Sample-Crops.aspx?Lens=941&Camera=453&Sample=0&FLI=0&API=0&LensComp=403&CameraComp=453&SampleComp=0&FLIComp=0&APIComp=1)

Correct, difference is minimal given everything I've seen thus far - unless you make a living shooting flat sharpness test charts.

The 50 f/1.2L was designed with uncorrected field curvature+spherical aberration with a priority on bokeh.

If you shoot flat test charts, that could be a problem.  But since things we shoot generally are not a flat test chart and do have depth, real world performance in the shots I have seen appear to have minimal difference sharpness/CA.  Wide open the Sigma does have a slight advantage in sharpness/CA real world use, but I expected that given the larger f/1.4 retrofocal design - at narrower apertures the Canon actually appears to pull ahead of the Sigma in sharpness (likely due to reduction of field curvature).

Field curvature does not make a lens subpar even though it will not perform as well on a test chart (just ask the $10k+ Leica Noctilux).  In the end, the real world performance is what counts.  And, some lenses will sacrifice some test chart sharpness/aberrations for superior bokeh and real world performance.



(http://www5.picturepush.com/photo/a/14117183/img/Picture-Box/20140413-IMG-3156.jpg)

(http://www4.picturepush.com/photo/a/14116952/img/Picture-Box/20140413-IMG-3159.jpg)

This would be a real world comparison. There is a night and day difference in sharpness. With the way the forum downsizes images if that were displayed at 1080p the uncropped image would fit the whole screen.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: noncho on April 16, 2014, 02:55:24 AM
Btw there is almost no difference in performance between 50 1.4 Art and 85 1.4 HSM - http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/ISO-12233-Sample-Crops.aspx?Lens=756&Camera=453&Sample=0&FLI=0&API=0&LensComp=941&CameraComp=0&FLIComp=0&APIComp=0 (http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/ISO-12233-Sample-Crops.aspx?Lens=756&Camera=453&Sample=0&FLI=0&API=0&LensComp=941&CameraComp=0&FLIComp=0&APIComp=0)
So 50 1.4 Art is not so amazing, just the other 50mm are weak.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: infared on April 16, 2014, 04:02:58 AM
...but I would love to see a comparison of the new Sigma 50mm vs. the old Sigma 50mm.  I know
This sure is fun.
Here's a brief one from the Phoblographer: Which One? Sigma 50mm f1.4 I vs Sigma 50mm f1.4 II Art
Read (http://www.thephoblographer.com/2014/04/13/one-sigma-50mm-f1-4-vs-sigma-50mm-f1-4-ii-art/#z0CdpYhsaHwMXdde.99)

Thanks.  I found that review to be somewhat helpful.   The comparison could have been a little more thorough when comparing the two lenses at f/1.4, but as we all know the new Art 50mm is the better lens...but not enough so to make me run out and preorder it.  I really like my original Sigma 50mm and the images I have made with it. ...plus, it's somewhat smaller and lighter. I am glad that Sigma has come up with this new improved offering...and that they have garnered a lot of attention and accolades with this new lens.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Viggo on April 16, 2014, 04:33:05 AM

Minimal difference in sharpness/CA  ?

http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/ISO-12233-Sample-Crops.aspx?Lens=941&Camera=453&Sample=0&FLI=0&API=0&LensComp=403&CameraComp=453&SampleComp=0&FLIComp=0&APIComp=1 (http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/ISO-12233-Sample-Crops.aspx?Lens=941&Camera=453&Sample=0&FLI=0&API=0&LensComp=403&CameraComp=453&SampleComp=0&FLIComp=0&APIComp=1)

Correct, difference is minimal given everything I've seen thus far - unless you make a living shooting flat sharpness test charts.

The 50 f/1.2L was designed with uncorrected field curvature+spherical aberration with a priority on bokeh.

If you shoot flat test charts, that could be a problem.  But since things we shoot generally are not a flat test chart and do have depth, real world performance in the shots I have seen appear to have minimal difference sharpness/CA.  Wide open the Sigma does have a slight advantage in sharpness/CA real world use, but I expected that given the larger f/1.4 retrofocal design - at narrower apertures the Canon actually appears to pull ahead of the Sigma in sharpness (likely due to reduction of field curvature).

Field curvature does not make a lens subpar even though it will not perform as well on a test chart (just ask the $10k+ Leica Noctilux).  In the end, the real world performance is what counts.  And, some lenses will sacrifice some test chart sharpness/aberrations for superior bokeh and real world performance.

This lens is really in an entirely different class than Canon 50/1,2


At first, after only viewing the Sigma vs Zeiss, I was going to say that the Zeiss is clearly better through at least f4 (that's as far as I looked). The Sigma  simply puts the 50L to shame, by a large margin. If you leave the Sigma at f/1.4, it still remains sharper than the 50L until about f/5.6, which is astounding.
You have to be really blind if you do not see the differences

The Zeiss 50 f2.0 was the best 50 for Canon by a larger margin, before the Otus, which technically isn't a 50, but oh well. The Zeiss 50 f1.4 however is absolute rubbish. So if the Sigma is worse than that it would be demolished by the Otus in the same way the sf-s 55-250 gets destroyed by the 70-200 mk2.

I can't see how the Sigma can be only slightly better than the 50 L and still compete with the Otus, that just doesn't add up. I'm beginning to wonder if the 50 Art lenses tested are all preproduction with high copy variation when the results differentiate so much.. But in some cases the example shots are just done wrong.

I downloaded the Zip with the raws from the 50 Art and I wasn't impressed at all, and with the first images shot by the Otus they blew my mind, so either Sigma lied, plain and simple, or people can't shoot or it's very high degree of copy variation and or preproduction lenses. This also of course mean I have to buy one, and buy it new so I can exchange it 4-5 times until a good copy is found.

Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Viggo on April 16, 2014, 04:52:41 AM
The Zeiss 50 f2.0 was the best 50 for Canon by a larger margin, before the Otus, which technically isn't a 50, but oh well. The Zeiss 50 f1.4 however is absolute rubbish. So if the Sigma is worse than that it would be demolished by the Otus in the same way the sf-s 55-250 gets destroyed by the 70-200 mk2.

I can't see how the Sigma can be only slightly better than the 50 L and still compete with the Otus, that just doesn't add up. I'm beginning to wonder if the 50 Art lenses tested are all preproduction with high copy variation when the results differentiate so much.. But in some cases the example shots are just done wrong.

I downloaded the Zip with the raws from the 50 Art and I wasn't impressed at all, and with the first images shot by the Otus they blew my mind, so either Sigma lied, plain and simple, or people can't shoot or it's very high degree of copy variation and or preproduction lenses. This also of course mean I have to buy one, and buy it new so I can exchange it 4-5 times until a good copy is found.

If you look at this review:
http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/ISO-12233-Sample-Crops.aspx?Lens=941&Camera=453&Sample=0&FLI=0&API=2&LensComp=403&CameraComp=453&SampleComp=0&FLIComp=0&APIComp=4 (http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/ISO-12233-Sample-Crops.aspx?Lens=941&Camera=453&Sample=0&FLI=0&API=2&LensComp=403&CameraComp=453&SampleComp=0&FLIComp=0&APIComp=4)

then it is pretty clear what the difference between the 50A and 50L is. Now if you don't care about corner sharpness (such as when using a shallow DoF and the corner is not in focus anyway) then this won't matter much to you. But if you're using a 50mm prime for landscape (for example) then the Sigma just blows the Canon away.

Higher quality lenses also require a higher quality review(er). Just putting it on your camera and going outside and shooting some objects and posting centre crops doesn't cut it.

I am aware of TDP test charts, and I can't understand how someone could can shoot so bad as to get the SLRlounge results and be that close to the 50 L when Bryan CLEARY shows the opposite.

I absolutely do care about best as possible corner performance, that's why I sold three copies if the 50 L, center comp isn't my favorite always. So I do agree with you.

I also think that center performance should also be MUCH better with the Sigma than the 50 L, not just the corners. The Otus is epic and the Sigma doesn't even come close as far as I have seen. BUT that being said, none of the tests I've seen is the end all, so I won't judge it until I have tried it myself and seen what others here on CR have to show when they get it. But an Otus Killer it doesn't look like it...
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Sabaki on April 16, 2014, 06:12:50 AM
Judging by what you guys have posted here, the only lens to definitively come out substantially better than the Canon 50/1.2 is the Otus.

For the rest of us who own any copy of a 50mm, would it not make sense to perhaps wait and see what Canon is going to offer?

I'm a little skeptical about 3rd party lenses. Not for ability reasons but for performance. Seeing a buddy wage war after his Sigma lens stopped working on his Pentax after a firmware upgrade has left me ultra cautious. 
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: ScottyP on April 16, 2014, 06:16:03 AM
I don't get it. Bryan's test at TDP is a complete blowout; not even close. The Sigma is sharper in center and much much much sharper than the 1.2L away from center and in corners, and the CA on the 50L is bad, while nearly non-existent on the Sigma.
In comparing any two other lenses, where there is no brand loyalty or investment-justification involved, that kind of test result would simply be a clear blowout, and there would be no further discussion. Not here though. Here we see the defensive comments and a retreat to the trenches of the intangibles like bokeh (which is not clearly different in any sample shot I have seen anyone point to specifically) and creaminess, and the supposed uselessness of test charts (but only for this lens).
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: ScottyP on April 16, 2014, 07:00:55 AM
... And raise your hand if you would be noticing the same supposed intangible advantages of creaminess, bokeh, etc. in the Canon shots and test chart if the results had been accidentally switched?  If the Canon results had been swapped do the Sigma results.  If the two results had been switched, who right now honestly would still be pointing at the blurry purple-fringed chart and claiming that it's meaningless if that had been identified as the result for Sigma instead of the one for Canon?  I think what we would be seeing is a lot of people pointing at that purple blurry chart and saying look how worthless the sigma lens is compared to the incredibly sharp and clear canon one, if the charts and shots were swapped.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: infared on April 16, 2014, 07:44:06 AM
I don't get it. Bryan's test at TDP is a complete blowout; not even close. The Sigma is sharper in center and much much much sharper than the 1.2L away from center and in corners, and the CA on the 50L is bad, while nearly non-existent on the Sigma.
In comparing any two other lenses, where there is no brand loyalty or investment-justification involved, that kind of test result would simply be a clear blowout, and there would be no further discussion. Not here though. Here we see the defensive comments and a retreat to the trenches of the intangibles like bokeh (which is not clearly different in any sample shot I have seen anyone point to specifically) and creaminess, and the supposed uselessness of test charts (but only for this lens).

There is a LOT of red-ring disease in this forum. Understandable I guess?
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Random Orbits on April 16, 2014, 08:13:54 AM
I don't get it. Bryan's test at TDP is a complete blowout; not even close. The Sigma is sharper in center and much much much sharper than the 1.2L away from center and in corners, and the CA on the 50L is bad, while nearly non-existent on the Sigma.
In comparing any two other lenses, where there is no brand loyalty or investment-justification involved, that kind of test result would simply be a clear blowout, and there would be no further discussion. Not here though. Here we see the defensive comments and a retreat to the trenches of the intangibles like bokeh (which is not clearly different in any sample shot I have seen anyone point to specifically) and creaminess, and the supposed uselessness of test charts (but only for this lens).

What don't you get?  I'm sure people that have the 50L love the fact that some are saying their lens sucks and that the Sigma is the bee's knees.  I think it's more the attitude of some posters that are getting people to be defensive.  The 50L doesn't get any worse now that the Sigma is coming out, and for many that have the 50L, the decision is not as clear cut, especially if they're waiting for the 50L II to come out before making a decision to switch the S50A.

I've tried Canon's 50 f/1.4 and have the 50L and my experience is that the 50L is better than the 50 f/1.4 wide open to about f/2.8, which is consistent with the results of LensRentals 50mm shootout while TDP shows the 50 f/1.4 to be a better performer.  But the 50L AFs a lot better and can be used wide open.  The 50 f/1.4's AF was not accurate from f/1.4-f/2.

With Sigma's success with the S35, I'd expect the S50 to perform well AF-wise.  Over time, I'd suspect that many would trade the 50L for the S50A, but it is a bit premature when it still is not available to everyone.  And if one has the 24-70 II, then the 50L would be used for portraiture/low light only, so edge/corner performance is not as important.  The S50 is even better than the 24-70 II at 50mm.  Is everyone now going to say that the 24-70 II sucks too for landscape and that the S50 A should be used instead?
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: jdramirez on April 16, 2014, 09:27:21 AM
http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B000RXW0AI/ref=mp_s_a_1_1?qid=1397654437&sr=8-1&pi=SY200_QL40 (http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B000RXW0AI/ref=mp_s_a_1_1?qid=1397654437&sr=8-1&pi=SY200_QL40)

Dylan, mac... I was thinking abit a b&w nd and using a step down filter.  77 will fit the 70-200 and the 24-105... but sure about the 100l, but I know it is smaller so I can use a step down ring there as well. 

Having said that... I've heard horror stories about the screw grooves being wrong and people having to cut the ring off their filter and lens... so is there a better brand of step down?

Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: mackguyver on April 16, 2014, 09:31:08 AM
JD, I've bought step-down rings from many different vendors and brands, but they all appear to be the same, and I've never had any issues with them.  Keep in mind that the hood won't work if you use, them, though.  I ended up buying a 72mm ND filter for my 50L / 85L II.  One shoot in the sun with the "1/8000s" flashing in the viewfinder until you hit f/2.8 or f/4 was enough for me :)


I don't get it. Bryan's test at TDP is a complete blowout; not even close. The Sigma is sharper in center and much much much sharper than the 1.2L away from center and in corners, and the CA on the 50L is bad, while nearly non-existent on the Sigma.
In comparing any two other lenses, where there is no brand loyalty or investment-justification involved, that kind of test result would simply be a clear blowout, and there would be no further discussion. Not here though. Here we see the defensive comments and a retreat to the trenches of the intangibles like bokeh (which is not clearly different in any sample shot I have seen anyone point to specifically) and creaminess, and the supposed uselessness of test charts (but only for this lens).

What don't you get?  I'm sure people that have the 50L love the fact that some are saying their lens sucks and that the Sigma is the bee's knees.  I think it's more the attitude of some posters that are getting people to be defensive.  The 50L doesn't get any worse now that the Sigma is coming out, and for many that have the 50L, the decision is not as clear cut, especially if they're waiting for the 50L II to come out before making a decision to switch the S50A.

I've tried Canon's 50 f/1.4 and have the 50L and my experience is that the 50L is better than the 50 f/1.4 wide open to about f/2.8, which is consistent with the results of LensRentals 50mm shootout while TDP shows the 50 f/1.4 to be a better performer.  But the 50L AFs a lot better and can be used wide open.  The 50 f/1.4's AF was not accurate from f/1.4-f/2.

With Sigma's success with the S35, I'd expect the S50 to perform well AF-wise.  Over time, I'd suspect that many would trade the 50L for the S50A, but it is a bit premature when it still is not available to everyone.  And if one has the 24-70 II, then the 50L would be used for portraiture/low light only, so edge/corner performance is not as important.  The S50 is even better than the 24-70 II at 50mm.  Is everyone now going to say that the 24-70 II sucks too for landscape and that the S50 A should be used instead?
Well said, Random, and I'm sure it's just a matter of time before we see the comparisons between the S50A at f/11 and the 24-70 II at f/11.  The S50A appears to be sharper.  I fall into the portraiture category and just as my 24-70 Mk I photos don't suddenly suck because I have the 24-70 II, the same goes here.

Back to ScottyP, I think what many of us are trying to say is that sharpness and a flat field were clearly not Canon's highest priority in designing the 50L.  If you read the Press Release (http://www.dpreview.com/news/2006/08/24/canon50f12lens), you'll see that it was designed for, "[W]edding and portrait photographers, as well as professional photojournalists."  For these subjects, it is an excellent lens and the bokeh, color, and contrast are what makes it great.  Look at these photos on 500px (http://500px.com/search?q=50L) if you think I'm crazy.

Yes, the Sigma is better at test charts, and yes, it looks like it will ultimately prove to be the better lens in terms of IQ.  No, it's not the only lens that does poorly on test charts but works better in actual use.  The 24-70 Mk I also had horrible field curvature, but produced excellent photos.  The 85 f/1.2 II is also softer on the test charts (outer frame) than it is in use.  The 180L macro is another interesting one - some sites list at as the sharpest lens they've tested, while many show it to be only above average.  My copy is just short of my 300 f/2.8 IS II.

Also, I think what many of us are saying is that the other factors (bokeh, color, contrast, flare resistance) ARE more important for portraits than sharpness.  That's not to say that the Sigma won't beat the Canon on those factors as well.  Most of us who are saying this have a bag full of sharp lenses that we use for everything else, but sometimes we want a unique look that can't be achieved by the 24-70 II or other lenses.

For me, one of the reasons I like the 50L is because it's small and relatively light compared to my other lenses.  It's much less conspicuous to walk around with it on my 5DIII than my 24-70 II or 85 II. 

Finally, I think Canon 50L (soft overpriced crap lens?) and Sigma fans (poor QA, crap AF?) alike are going to be defensive on this one, but it's no surprise given what Roger over at LensRentals (http://www.lensrentals.com/rent/canon/lenses/normal-range/canon-50mm-f1.2l) says about the 50L:

"Well, we could talk about this for hours: this is one of the most controversial, irritating, and spectacular lenses in the lineup. I won’t pretend to know what you’ll think of it, but our customers are evenly divided with “I love it” and “I hate it.” Here are a couple of pointers:


The bottom line: when this lens is right, the shots are spectacular and the background blur is awesome, just like the 85 f/1.2. But it’s more finicky and more difficult to get those shots with this lens.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: mackguyver on April 16, 2014, 10:11:41 AM
I'd love to see someone demonstrate a photographic shoot where the 50L produces images that the S50A can't touch.
I don't think that will happen or is possible :).  The Sigma is an excellent lens and appears to be equal or better than the 50L in all areas other than size and weight.  The only exception might be bokeh, but from what I've seen so far, the bokeh differences are slight outer ringing and very minor minor onion rings that are only going to be visible at 100% magnification and won't show up in normal-sized prints.  The 50L bokeh may be a hair better in smoothness and artifacts because it (theoretically at least) has a larger physical diaphragm.  Unless it has some fatal flaw with point light sources or something, I don't think the 50L will beat it by a big margin at anything.

I think what we have seen and will continue to see is the Sigma smoking the 50L on sharpness outside of the center of the frame.

Also, the one thing that most impresses me most about the Sigma is the lack of distortion.  We all take that for granted with PS, LR, and DxO, but lenses with distortion that low are a rare breed.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Radiating on April 16, 2014, 10:50:01 AM
I don't get it. Bryan's test at TDP is a complete blowout; not even close. The Sigma is sharper in center and much much much sharper than the 1.2L away from center and in corners, and the CA on the 50L is bad, while nearly non-existent on the Sigma.
In comparing any two other lenses, where there is no brand loyalty or investment-justification involved, that kind of test result would simply be a clear blowout, and there would be no further discussion. Not here though. Here we see the defensive comments and a retreat to the trenches of the intangibles like bokeh (which is not clearly different in any sample shot I have seen anyone point to specifically) and creaminess, and the supposed uselessness of test charts (but only for this lens).

... And raise your hand if you would be noticing the same supposed intangible advantages of creaminess, bokeh, etc. in the Canon shots and test chart if the results had been accidentally switched?  If the Canon results had been swapped do the Sigma results.  If the two results had been switched, who right now honestly would still be pointing at the blurry purple-fringed chart and claiming that it's meaningless if that had been identified as the result for Sigma instead of the one for Canon?  I think what we would be seeing is a lot of people pointing at that purple blurry chart and saying look how worthless the sigma lens is compared to the incredibly sharp and clear canon one, if the charts and shots were swapped.

Thanks. This is really not a subtle difference. The 50mm f/1.4 Art is among the best lenses you can buy for any camera. It has performance at f/1.4 that equals the 135mm f/2.0L. At f/2.0 it equals the Canon 200mm f/2.0 IS which is regarded as the best autofocusing lens money can buy. While the 50L is the softest lens Canon currently makes in terms of average resolution.

Here's a comparison that I found very revealing, taken from one of the better SLR lounge raws, with my own sharpening and contrast preset applied to both in lightroom, and color corrected to match. Open both in separate tabs and flip back and forth and see if you can tell the difference:

http://www5.picturepush.com/photo/a/14119258/img/Picture-Box/SLR-IMG-3113.jpg (http://www5.picturepush.com/photo/a/14119258/img/Picture-Box/SLR-IMG-3113.jpg)

http://www1.picturepush.com/photo/a/14119259/img/Picture-Box/SLR-IMG-3119.jpg (http://www1.picturepush.com/photo/a/14119259/img/Picture-Box/SLR-IMG-3119.jpg)
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: sdsr on April 16, 2014, 11:01:10 AM

Higher quality lenses also require a higher quality review(er). Just putting it on your camera and going outside and shooting some objects and posting centre crops doesn't cut it.


That's true of all lenses, of course.  But I don't think test chart comparisons are terribly helpful either.  What I would rather see - and which Brian will surely do when his review shows up; it's one of the most useful aspects of his reviews - is comparisons of photos of actual subjects of various sorts: portraits, buildings, landscapes, etc. 
I suspect the Sigma will prove to be a superb lens, and wouldn't be at all surprised if in may ways it beats the 50L - though if I used a 50mm lens to take portraits I would be far more interested in which has better bokeh than which shows the most clinical detail. 

(Personally, I have no stake in this particular debate - if I want crazy sharpness from a 50mm-ish lens, I suspect that my Sony/Zeiss 55mm 1.8/Sony A7r combination is at least as sharp as the Sigma would be on any current Canon body, while weighing less than the Sigma lens alone, and if I want a blur-fest from a 50mm-ish lens I'll use my manual Canon 55mm 1.2 on the Sony.)
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: NancyP on April 16, 2014, 11:05:46 AM
The EF 50 f/1.2L and EF 85 f/1.2 excel at portraiture, where bokeh is king, and excessive sharpness just gets smoothed away in post production. People don't want portraits of their pores, they want portraits of their faces.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: sdsr on April 16, 2014, 11:20:04 AM

Here we see the defensive comments and a retreat to the trenches of the intangibles like bokeh (which is not clearly different in any sample shot I have seen anyone point to specifically) and creaminess [...].


Your overall point re pro-Canon bias may have more than a hint of truth about it, but I disagree with your implication that "intangibles like bokeh" don't matter (at least, I assume that's what you mean by "retreat to the trenches").  Of course, bokeh/blur is a tricky issue for reviewers because it can't be measured in the same way that resolution/sharpness can, and while there's presumably no debate whether one image is sharper than another, there may well be disagreement over which has better bokeh (and, of course, whether it matters in the first place).  But the fact that it can't be measured doesn't mean it's "intangible" - you see blur just as you see sharpness - and whether one image is "clearly different" from another is also subjective (in the 1.8 vs 1.4 comparison someone posted earlier to show that there was almost no difference, the difference seemed quite obvious to me and I had no difficulty at all in forming a preference).  And for some people a lens's bokeh/blur properties may Me_Me_Me other considerations. 

That said, for all I know the Sigma may have better bokeh than the Canon (unlikely though that may seem), just as the Sigma 35 1.4 seems to have better bokeh than the Canon 35 1.4 (at least as per Brian's comparison at the digital picture.).
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Dylan777 on April 16, 2014, 11:21:34 AM
http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B000RXW0AI/ref=mp_s_a_1_1?qid=1397654437&sr=8-1&pi=SY200_QL40 (http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B000RXW0AI/ref=mp_s_a_1_1?qid=1397654437&sr=8-1&pi=SY200_QL40)

Dylan, mac... I was thinking abit a b&w nd and using a step down filter.  77 will fit the 70-200 and the 24-105... but sure about the 100l, but I know it is smaller so I can use a step down ring there as well. 

Having said that... I've heard horror stories about the screw grooves being wrong and people having to cut the ring off their filter and lens... so is there a better brand of step down?

I have never own any step down ring. So no comment. I bought the BW 72mm 3stop ND filter, since my 50L, 85L, and 135L are 72mm

This is the one I have: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/752859-REG/B_W_1066146_72mm_103_Solid_Neutral.html (http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/752859-REG/B_W_1066146_72mm_103_Solid_Neutral.html)
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Rudeofus on April 16, 2014, 11:31:47 AM
One key issue with the 50L is the "focus shift" that occurs if the lens is used near minimum focus distance at apertures between 2 and 4. Since this is quite a common setting in portrait shots, I wonder why so many people recommend the 50L so much as a portrait lens.

And the second thing which wonders me even more, is that none of these reviews checked whether the 50A suffers from this same focus shift issue. Since the issue appears to come from spherical aberrations which are less present in the 50A there is a good chance that the 50A is less affected, but the many tests and comparisons between 50L and 50A might as well take a closer look.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: mackguyver on April 16, 2014, 11:51:13 AM
(http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/a7/White_flag_waving.svg/200px-White_flag_waving.svg.png)

Truce? 

Also, Dylan, that's the same filter I have.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: GMCPhotographics on April 16, 2014, 12:22:03 PM
One key issue with the 50L is the "focus shift" that occurs if the lens is used near minimum focus distance at apertures between 2 and 4. Since this is quite a common setting in portrait shots, I wonder why so many people recommend the 50L so much as a portrait lens.

And the second thing which wonders me even more, is that none of these reviews checked whether the 50A suffers from this same focus shift issue. Since the issue appears to come from spherical aberrations which are less present in the 50A there is a good chance that the 50A is less affected, but the many tests and comparisons between 50L and 50A might as well take a closer look.

The 50L's focus shift occurs at min focus distance (very close). So for head and shoulder portraits, which is usually shot over 1m, then it's a minor issue and very slight. The focus shift only occurs when stopping down, as the aperture gets to f2.8 it's at it's worse. Most people are using this lens either wide open (not an issue) or stopped down to f8/f11 in the studio under flash light, so it's also not an issue.
If one uses this lens for it's intended purpose, its fine. Sure it's Canon's softest L lens (they still make other non L lenses which are softer), but it's not a lens designed to be critically sharp. It's about charector and bokeh...but unfortunately so many amateur photographers get totally hung up on sharpness and lens charts.

If you are best served with the Sigma, knock your self out and get one. If you fancy a 50L, likewise. But don't think that either lens will bring peace and happiness....it's just a lens at the end of the day.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Viggo on April 16, 2014, 12:24:49 PM
Why does some people think that "portrait shooting" automatically means CENTER focus and HEADSHOT?

The 50 L sucks for a 2/3 portrait or a full body shot of a kid when the edge points are used to focus. The 85 is WAY different and to mention those two lenses in the same sentence for the same things is just not right.

I have always felt the 50 L is one of the coolest lenses Canon has made, I LOVE the size and how it handles, and unlike the 135 L, 85 L and 35 L it's fully weather sealed which is a big deal for me. And for center composed shots I can't think of a lens I would rather use for portraits, BUT it's just so extremely limited.

So I both love and hate it. If the Sigma does the nice bokeh, like it seems, is sharper or as sharp in the center and much sharper in the corners and it's resistant to flare and have similar contrast and color rendition plus the already proved (almost) zero distortion, it would be the better choice no matter if you own the L or not, imo.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: mackguyver on April 16, 2014, 12:34:48 PM
Why does some people think that "portrait shooting" automatically means CENTER focus and HEADSHOT?
I'm not sure, but that's what the 85, 135 and 70-200 are for :)  I use the 85 for everything from full length to head shots and my favorite "portrait" lens for broader shots is actually the 24 1.4 II, but the 50mm focal length has its place, too. 
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Viggo on April 16, 2014, 12:40:00 PM
Why does some people think that "portrait shooting" automatically means CENTER focus and HEADSHOT?
I'm not sure, but that's what the 85, 135 and 70-200 are for :)  I use the 85 for everything from full length to head shots and my favorite "portrait" lens for broader shots is actually the 24 1.4 II, but the 50mm focal length has its place, too.

Do you center focus with full length?
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: mackguyver on April 16, 2014, 01:16:30 PM
Why does some people think that "portrait shooting" automatically means CENTER focus and HEADSHOT?
I'm not sure, but that's what the 85, 135 and 70-200 are for :)  I use the 85 for everything from full length to head shots and my favorite "portrait" lens for broader shots is actually the 24 1.4 II, but the 50mm focal length has its place, too.

Do you center focus with full length?
It depends on the aperture, in the studio at f/11, yes, I'm usually lazy and do that because I have enough DOF.  In other settings, I'll use larger apertures and focus on the eyes and do a focus/recompose as appropriate, or use an outer focus point.

It just depends on the aperture, where the subject is in the frame and how big they are in the frame.  The only time I usually center a subject is for headshots or if there is a dominant element in the frame to the side of the person or some symmetrical element to frame the person.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: jdramirez on April 16, 2014, 01:24:17 PM
(http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/a7/White_flag_waving.svg/200px-White_flag_waving.svg.png)

Truce? 

Also, Dylan, that's the same filter I have.

It's good to be passionate about something... And by George aren't we all.

Even though I don't have a dog in the fight anymore... I still do like order.  I like simple equations that explain complicated truths like...

Canon 85<sigma 85< Canon 85L. 

Simple... most people would agree if cost isn't considered... And I think for me I want to see

Canon 50 f1.8 < Canon f1.4 < Sigma f1.4 < Canon 50L < Sigma 50 art < otus. 

But I understand it isn't that simple...
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: ahsanford on April 16, 2014, 01:39:01 PM

Simple... most people would agree if cost isn't considered... And I think for me I want to see

Canon 50 f1.8 < Canon f1.4 < Sigma f1.4 < Canon 50L < Sigma 50 art < otus. 

But I understand it isn't that simple...

For me, and what I shoot (i.e rarely wider than F/2), your relationship chart is just about right.

Others who live in those crazy wide apertures will clearly debate where the L goes in that list.

- A
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: mackguyver on April 16, 2014, 01:48:23 PM

Simple... most people would agree if cost isn't considered... And I think for me I want to see

Canon 50 f1.8 < Canon f1.4 < Sigma f1.4 < Canon 50L < Sigma 50 art < otus. 

But I understand it isn't that simple...

For me, and what I shoot (i.e rarely wider than F/2), your relationship chart is just about right.

Others who live in those crazy wide apertures will clearly debate where the L goes in that list.

- A
I think the list is right, but you could put the L on the left in terms of pure and full frame sharpness.  In terms of the final image, that's up for infinite debate.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: ahsanford on April 16, 2014, 02:06:12 PM

Continuing the > discussion, just speculating now, where will the long-rumored new Canon non-L 50mm F/nooneknows IS USM lens fall in that comparison?

For sharpness, I'd say:
Canon 50 f1.8 < Canon 50L < Canon f1.4 and Sigma f1.4 < New Canon 50 < Sigma 50 art < otus. 
(I put that old Sigma and Canon 1.4 in the same sharpness bucket as many reports conflict on that.)

For the overall likelihood I'll use it, the 'math' changes for me:
Otus < Canon 50 f1.8 < Canon 50L < Canon f1.4 and Sigma f1.4 < Sigma 50 art < New Canon 50

I say that because...

(a) I'm an AF user at that length 100% of the time (sorry, Otus)
(b) IS and much lower weight/size are big upsides for the new Canon
(c) Given the nice (but not best in class) sharpness improvements seen in the 24/28/35 non-L IS refreshes, I'm fairly certain the Canon 50 IS will bridge some of the gap between the Canon 1.4 and the Sigma Art.
(d) As stated before, I rarely shoot wider than F/2

Curious to see everyone's thoughts on where their money is going between the new 50 Art and Canon's long-rumored non-L IS refresh.

- A

Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Radiating on April 16, 2014, 02:15:42 PM
The EF 50 f/1.2L and EF 85 f/1.2 excel at portraiture, where bokeh is king, and excessive sharpness just gets smoothed away in post production. People don't want portraits of their pores, they want portraits of their faces.

I do photo editing professionally, and work with many professional photographer's images. It is incredibly easy to make the Sigma 50mm ART look like the Canon 50mm L. Just turn sharpening to zero, and add some blur and chromatic aberration to the Sigma. You can always reduce the amount of detail in an image and make it softer. It is easy to destroy information, but you cannot create detail out of thin air.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: neuroanatomist on April 16, 2014, 02:30:16 PM
The EF 50 f/1.2L and EF 85 f/1.2 excel at portraiture, where bokeh is king, and excessive sharpness just gets smoothed away in post production. People don't want portraits of their pores, they want portraits of their faces.

I do photo editing professionally, and work with many professional photographer's images. It is incredibly easy to make the Sigma 50mm ART look like the Canon 50mm L. Just turn sharpening to zero, and add some blur and chromatic aberration to the Sigma. You can always reduce the amount of detail in an image and make it softer. It is easy to destroy information, but you cannot create detail out of thin air.

So, you can faithfully replicate the 50L's rendering of OOF areas in terms of aesthetic quality?  Given that the number of aperture blades is an important factor in determining bokeh, what post-processing step/algorightm do you use to subtract one of the Sigma lens' 9 aperture blades so it has only the 8 blades of the Canon 50L?   ::)

Bokeh ≠ 'adding some blur'. 
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: thepancakeman on April 16, 2014, 04:01:37 PM
Simple... most people would agree if cost isn't considered... And I think for me I want to see

Canon 50 f1.8 < Canon f1.4 < Sigma f1.4 < Canon 50L < Sigma 50 art < otus. 

But I understand it isn't that simple...

But it is that simple. 

The only problem is you need a different list for each of: weight, weather sealing, CA, corner sharpness, center sharpness, bokeh, color rendition, AF performance, cost, size, flare control, microcontrast, etc., etc.   :o
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Eldar on April 16, 2014, 04:09:01 PM
I think it is a fair statement that Canon´s 50mm line up is getting a bit old. I have used the 50/1.2L for many years and I have been very happy with it. It adds a creamy and artistic dimension to images you don´t easily get from others.

But! It is quite clear that they need to upgrade these lenses to match what the competition is bringing out. The Otus is totally crushing every one of them, but at a very high price premium. The 50 Art is cheaper and even though it will not be as good as the Otus, it will still outperform every Canon lens by a significant margin. I have not seen enough to say that it will contest the bokeh of the 50/1.2L, but the 50/1.2L cannot contest the other qualities of the Sigma or Otus. It´s a bit like saying that a 16bit CD concept outperforms a 24 bit SACD concept (analogue part excluded). It does not.

I also believe that the 50 Art gave both Nikon and Canon something to chew on. They may well have planned the release of something a bit better than they have provided and probably add IS. But with the 50 Art out, they have to go back to the drawing board or alternatively risk losing the 50mm segment to someone else.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Radiating on April 16, 2014, 04:20:36 PM
The EF 50 f/1.2L and EF 85 f/1.2 excel at portraiture, where bokeh is king, and excessive sharpness just gets smoothed away in post production. People don't want portraits of their pores, they want portraits of their faces.

I do photo editing professionally, and work with many professional photographer's images. It is incredibly easy to make the Sigma 50mm ART look like the Canon 50mm L. Just turn sharpening to zero, and add some blur and chromatic aberration to the Sigma. You can always reduce the amount of detail in an image and make it softer. It is easy to destroy information, but you cannot create detail out of thin air.

So, you can faithfully replicate the 50L's rendering of OOF areas in terms of aesthetic quality?  Given that the number of aperture blades is an important factor in determining bokeh, what post-processing step/algorightm do you use to subtract one of the Sigma lens' 9 aperture blades so it has only the 8 blades of the Canon 50L?   ::)

Bokeh ≠ 'adding some blur'.

That comment was in regard to someone saying that the 50 Art may render the in-focus areas too sharply and show too many pores. It is very easy to make pores less apparent and in focus areas softer. The most inexperienced novice should have no trouble making the in-focus areas of the 50A appear like the 50L. It took me 2 minutes to create a preset that does that.

Bokeh is a whole other animal. I actually have created bokeh from scratch and also created detail by hand painting it from scratch. It's not cheap to have that kind of work done. In fact it's cheaper to just buy the correct equipment in the first place then to have your editor invent detail and background blur.

I don't think we can make the call quite yet on which has clearly better bokeh but the 50A's bokeh looks very close to the 50L's. It's a much smaller difference than say the Canon 50mm 1.4 USM and the 50L.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: neuroanatomist on April 16, 2014, 04:22:58 PM
...risk losing the 50mm segment to someone else.

The upper end of it, at any rate.  I suspect that Canon will make more revenue annually from sales of the 50/1.8 and 50/1.4 than Sigma and Zeiss will make from their new offerings combined.  The design and tooling costs for those two lenses are long since paid for, which also means they have a high profit margin.  I really don't think it would be too hard for Canon to sell eight of the 50/1.8 lenses for every Sigma 50/1.4 art that is sold...  Heck, I spent 25 minutes at the Calumet going out of business sale, and they sold three of the 50/1.8's during that time (and probably would have sold more, but they only had three left when I got there).
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: neuroanatomist on April 16, 2014, 04:28:09 PM
The EF 50 f/1.2L and EF 85 f/1.2 excel at portraiture, where bokeh is king, and excessive sharpness just gets smoothed away in post production. People don't want portraits of their pores, they want portraits of their faces.

I do photo editing professionally, and work with many professional photographer's images. It is incredibly easy to make the Sigma 50mm ART look like the Canon 50mm L. Just turn sharpening to zero, and add some blur and chromatic aberration to the Sigma. You can always reduce the amount of detail in an image and make it softer. It is easy to destroy information, but you cannot create detail out of thin air.

So, you can faithfully replicate the 50L's rendering of OOF areas in terms of aesthetic quality?  Given that the number of aperture blades is an important factor in determining bokeh, what post-processing step/algorightm do you use to subtract one of the Sigma lens' 9 aperture blades so it has only the 8 blades of the Canon 50L?   ::)

Bokeh ≠ 'adding some blur'.

That comment was in regard to someone saying that the 50 Art may render the in-focus areas too sharply and show too many pores. It is very easy to make pores less apparent and in focus areas softer. The most inexperienced novice should have no trouble making the in-focus areas of the 50A appear like the 50L. It took me 2 minutes to create a preset that does that.

Bokeh is a whole other animal...

Please read again the comment to which you were replying, paying particular attention to the part I highlighted in red above.  NancyP mentioned bokeh before mentioning sharpness and pores.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: persiannight on April 16, 2014, 04:37:54 PM
This is much the same as the 35L vs 35A debate.....  If you want a sharper lens with harsher bokeh go with the Sigma Art Lenses... if you want an overall smoother rendered pic go with the Canon equivalent.   Though the 35A is  sharper (I owned it for a few months) the 35L rendered the better image to my eyes...  Sharpness isn't everything.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: jdramirez on April 16, 2014, 05:18:11 PM
This is much the same as the 35L vs 35A debate.....  If you want a sharper lens with harsher bokeh go with the Sigma Art Lenses... if you want an overall smoother rendered pic go with the Canon equivalent.   Though the 35A is  sharper (I owned it for a few months) the 35L rendered the better image to my eyes...  Sharpness isn't everything.

So you were a product tester?  How exactly do you go about getting on that list?
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: Radiating on April 17, 2014, 01:18:16 AM
This is much the same as the 35L vs 35A debate.....  If you want a sharper lens with harsher bokeh go with the Sigma Art Lenses... if you want an overall smoother rendered pic go with the Canon equivalent.   Though the 35A is  sharper (I owned it for a few months) the 35L rendered the better image to my eyes...  Sharpness isn't everything.

I agree with your 35L vs 35A conclusion BUT honestly all this talk about the bokeh of the 50L being better seems like unfounded assumptions.

In every test I have seen the Sigma 50A outperforms the Canon 50L  in bokeh. The Sigma lacks the aberrations and flaws, and business that the Canon shows while delivering the same punchy contrast in the background blur.

It's like somehow people have already decided that the Canon has better bokeh despite having evidence that seems to be to the contrary.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: GMCPhotographics on April 17, 2014, 06:16:48 AM
This is much the same as the 35L vs 35A debate.....  If you want a sharper lens with harsher bokeh go with the Sigma Art Lenses... if you want an overall smoother rendered pic go with the Canon equivalent.   Though the 35A is  sharper (I owned it for a few months) the 35L rendered the better image to my eyes...  Sharpness isn't everything.

I agree with your 35L vs 35A conclusion BUT honestly all this talk about the bokeh of the 50L being better seems like unfounded assumptions.

In every test I have seen the Sigma 50A outperforms the Canon 50L  in bokeh. The Sigma lacks the aberrations and flaws, and business that the Canon shows while delivering the same punchy contrast in the background blur.

It's like somehow people have already decided that the Canon has better bokeh despite having evidence that seems to be to the contrary.

Well, that's an opinion of other photographers on this forum which is probably best kept to your self. Unless you want to single out someone specifically and start a flame war.

I have used a 50L for many years. Taken countless professional weddings and a number of landscapes with it.
I found for landscape work, there are sharper options, especially when stopped down. Professionals aren't particularly bothered is Sigma makes a slightly better optic than Canon... pros buy Canon for several reasons, they are generally built to a far higher standard. In 7 years of wedding photography I've never had an L lens fail on me. I abandoned Sigma several years ago due to their comparable fragility, heavy weight, poor flare control and inconsistent AF. I've owned 6 sigma EX lenses over the years and sold them all. 5 of them went back to Sigma due to poor reliability.

Sure Sigma may have made their new 50 and 35 to better specs...but I'm done with them as a brand, I won't trust my photographic business to their products anymore. I bought a 120-300 OS to see if they had improved and found all the old issues. So I re-sold that particular lens and I'm not even going to bother with the new 35 and 50...why? Because I've had 7 years + of sterling service from my Canon 50 and 35...so why introduce a new risk? I'm happy with the results I see and my photos and services are selling. Your mileage might vary.
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: persiannight on April 17, 2014, 08:42:48 AM
This is much the same as the 35L vs 35A debate.....  If you want a sharper lens with harsher bokeh go with the Sigma Art Lenses... if you want an overall smoother rendered pic go with the Canon equivalent.   Though the 35A is  sharper (I owned it for a few months) the 35L rendered the better image to my eyes...  Sharpness isn't everything.

So you were a product tester?  How exactly do you go about getting on that list?

 :-*
Title: Re: Review: Sigma 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Post by: mackguyver on April 17, 2014, 03:47:20 PM
Look at these photos on 500px (http://500px.com/search?q=50L) if you think I'm crazy.
I just ran this search while being logged into 500px and the results are very different and definitely NSFW  :-[.

I hope I didn't get anyone in trouble :)