Sigma 35mm F1.4 DG DN ART Gallery
April 27th, 2021
It’s hard to believe that just a couple of years ago Sigma had no lenses for Sony full frame E-mount (FE). They started with a huge drop of “adopted” DSLR lenses that gave them a basic lineup built on their existing lenses, though those lenses were always somewhat compromised. They weren’t designed for the mirrorless flange distance (distance from optical path to the sensor), so they had more size and weight added to them to move the optical path forward and to make room for a built-in adapter to allow focus to work properly on Sony mirrorless. It more or less worked, but never as reliably as native lenses. Part of that initial batch of lenses was the adapted FE version of the Sigma 35mm F1.4 DG ART. That was the very first lens to bear the ART name, and, while it has been beloved, its a bit “long in the tooth” at this point and was never designed with Sony mirrorless in mind. But Sigma wasn’t done, as they have gone on to produce at least ten other new DN (their designation for mirrorless) lenses during the past two years. Two of those were actually 35mm lenses, including the massive and optically superior 35mm F1.2 DN ART (the first autofocusing F1.2 lens on Sony, which I reviewed here) and, more recently, the compact 35mm F2 DN from their iSeries which I reviewed here. One would think that with three 35mm options available on Sony that Sigma would “rest on their laurels”. It turns out that is in fact NOT the case, as Sigma saw room for a true replacement for the original 35mm F1.4 ART with a brand new lens purposefully designed for mirrorless. That “middle of the road” option that will almost certainly replace the compromised original FE version at retail is the new Sigma 35mm F1.4 DG DN ART lens. The 35mm DN has the honor of being the very first lens that I get to review on my new Sony Alpha 1 which I just reviewed last week.
In the classic fairytale about Goldilocks everything comes in sets of threes. One is too hot, one is too cold, but one is just right. For many photographers, the 35mm F2 DN will be too small (not a wide enough aperture), the 35mm F1.2 too big (literally and cost-wise), but it is Sigma’s hope that the new 35mm F1.4 DN ART will be the “just right” option. And frankly, that seems like a likely scenario in my mind. The new lens weighs 450g less (640g) than the 35mm F1.2 (1090g), is 25mm shorter, and costs $600 less. It isn’t as compact as the new Sony 35mm F1.4 G Master lens (which is a svelte 524g and is only 96mm long), but it also has the advantage of being $500 cheaper. The size between the two F1.4 options isn’t radically different, and Sigma’s price advantage and optical prowess will almost certain catch the eye of the “discerning budget” shopper that wants a premium lens but doesn’t want to pay a premium price. This is a pretty wide swath of photographers in my experience.
The 35mm F1.4 space on Sony had been rather slim until the arrival this year of the GM lens, and this purpose-built Sigma lens for Sony mirrorless (it is also available for Leica L) will now really flesh out the options. I had hoped to do some direct comparisons to the GM lens, but it is unfortunately running a little behind in production, and I haven’t gotten my hands on one yet. I’ve been impressed with the Sigma 35mm DN, however, which is perhaps the sharpest 35mm lens that I’ve ever used.
This is a lens that laughs at the demands of the 50MP sensor that I tested it on, with absolutely incredible contrast and detail from F1.4 on. You can read my text review or watch my video reviews, or just enjoy the photos below…
Thanks to Sigma Canada for getting me an early loaner of the lens. As always, this is a completely independent review.
Photos of the Sigma 35mm F1.4 DN
Photos taken with the Sigma 35mm F1.4 DN
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Keywords: Sigma 35mm F1.4, Sigma 35 F1.4 DN, 35mm F1.4 DN, Sigma 35mm F1.4 DN, DN, DG, 35mm, F1.4, Review, Sigma 35mm F1.4 Review, ART, Review, Sony, Review, Hands On, Dustin Abbott, Real World, Comparison, Sharpness, Bokeh, Flare Resistance, Autofocus, Image Quality, Sample Images, Video, Photography, Sony a9, sony a7III, sony a7RIII, a7R3, Leica L, Sony Alpha 1, Sony A1
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