Photozone, one of the web's most-trusted resources for all things digital camera lenses, has completed a review of a highly-anticipated optic: the Sigma 18-35 f1.8 Art, which is, by a stop and a third, the fastest zoom lens available for APS-C.
So, how does the highly-anticipated lens fare in the lab? Short answer, very well.
In terms of optics, there is a lot to like about the Sigma 18-35. First of all, the lens is not only sharp, but it is rather sharp straight out of the gate at its widest aperture, which is nothing short of amazing for a zoom lens with a constant aperture of f1.8. In contrast, many f2.8 zooms are soft right out of the gate. Needless to say, Sigma's opticians did their homework on this one! In addition, Photozone reports minimal chromatic aberration and a surprisingly low (for this class of lens) amount of distortion. Vignetting? It's there at about a stop and a half at f1.8, but it drops dramatically by f2.8.
While no small afterthought, Photozone noted that the lens is quick to focus, too.
Construction materials? Metal and Sigma's exclusive Thermally Stable Composite (TSC), which many reviewers compare to having the feel of aluminum. As for controls, the rubberized zoom and focus rings operate very smoothly. Additionally, there is an AF/MF switch that can be thought of more as an AF disable as the lens features full time manual focus capability.
As a final bonus, the lens, while not cheap at $799, is a lot cheaper than many people were expecting this revolutionary optic to be when it hit stores.
Overall conclusion? Praise in the highest regard, but not without a wish for more focal range. .
Want one yet? Well, order right now and hope it shows up by Labor Day as this lens is currently backordered everywhere, with Amazon listing a 1-4 month wait time.
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