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Keywords: Sigma Canon Nikon Sony Pentax Tele Prime 35mm DG HSM tested


Registered: October 2015
Posts: 1
Sigma 85mm f/1.4 EX DG HSM review by PeterHarris
Review Date: 10/29/2015 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $925.00| Rating: 9 

Pros: Sharpness, f/1.4, silent and fast focus
Cons: weird auto focus, PF

I am a very happy owner of Sigma 50mm f/1.4 HSM. So I am very excited to purchase a Sigma 85mm for portrait photography.
I must say that I am very please with the results in term of sharpness and bokeh, of subjects within about 5 meters. This means this lens is extremely excellent for head and half body shots. But it shows too much problems with auto focus when shooting far away objects. What I mean is that I was trying to shoot a couple of people were standing about 20 meters away from me, the lens just decided to focus on the background behind those people. I do not really understand why. If I want to have accurate focus for this case, I have to manual pre-focus and then activate the auto focus. And please notice that this weird focusing problem I never observe on my $499 Sigma 50mm and the same Pentax body.
To test PF, I did some test shots at people with bright sunshine. PF was observed and did not disappear until f/4.5.
I really want to have a good copy of this lens in my photography equipments, so I have been trying 3 copies.
First copy from bought on ebay: Back focus problem, needed +4 adjusted on K-5. And very heavily front focus for far objects, let's say about 10 meters, it has about 0.7 meter front focus. Returned as defective item, charged me 15% restocking fee even it has 14 days return policy. Ebay helped me get money back. Stay away from this seller.
Second and third copies from Amazon: very accurate focus for near objects, but random focusing for far objects. These two lens would be returned. | |

Registered: July 2014
Posts: 4
Sigma 85mm f/1.4 EX DG HSM review by VS
Review Date: 7/31/2014 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $950.00| Rating: 10 

Pros: High quality picture and bokeh, high sharpness across the field with 1.4. Good color. Fast and accurate AF. Good and reliable design.
Cons: no

Sigma 85mm f / 1,4 on the field is not inferior to Nikon 85 / 1,4G, has a beautiful soft bokeh, good design, accurate and fast AF, a beautiful rich color. Photographing a great pleasure, you do not want to remove from the camera. This is a wonderful lens!

Registered: February 2013
Posts: 1
Sigma 85mm f/1.4 EX DG HSM review by umanirmalart
Review Date: 2/1/2013 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 9 

Pros: Impressive portrait lense'sincredible bokey, very fat (1.4)aperture and AF
Cons: Really not easy to use, deep of field and AF precision arevery impressive... and hard to use with perfection

Since 10 years i wanted to have a real photographic weapon.. a portrait lens with an extremely open aperture..!I had a extraordinary experience with the famous old Canon's FD lens 85mm f1.2 L, i should sell it , and since more than 10 years i puchase a dream to recover the same sensation when a was shoot a portrait !!With this incredible Sigma's lens i re-discover the perfect pleasure to make the focus only on the border of my eye's subject..... for exemple at the f1.4 only my subject's eye is sharped (the subject is at 2 meters to me), the deep of field is sooooo fine that the sharped zone is only from 0.5 cm !!!, the bokey is amazing, creamy and soft !! This unique quality of portrait render is very greatfull and you have the sensation to make an idillic and very proffesssional portrait !!! , understand that you must make a demoniac and exact focusing on the eyes, personaly i use it with a 1.36x eyefinder an use the lens on manual focusing... I use a Sigma SD15 reflex with the incredible real color Foveon's sensor, , the rendering of color is just perfect, especially with the skin portrait color...
This lens have a second perfect point.. after his fabulous sharped to at ultra high aperture the second point is the...look, yeah ! cause this magic lens is incredibely massive, the longer is the same than his largeur, the uv's screw is 77mm and nobody can't ignore the sensation of stronger and power of this magnific lens !
It's not a hazard if more than one professional photographer prefer this lense (same thing with the Canon 85mm f1.2L, Contax 85mm f1.4 and Nikon 85mmf1.4) about other all !!

Registered: July 2012
Posts: 1
Sigma 85mm f/1.4 EX DG HSM review by mayur
Review Date: 7/24/2012 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $800.00| Rating: 10 

Pros: bookeh, build quality & fast auto focus...
Cons: nothing to complain..

I am currently using APSC sensor camera D5000. Purchased this as later I will upgrade to full frame. Photo quality is very good. Just like the way things gets blur into creamy bookeh & the subject is tack in focus. One can easily get background blur even for full frame portraits which is not possible with zooms. For that one need to click head shots.. I just bought the lens a day before after reading the positive reviews.. I made a right decision. Its a bang for the money u spend.. Totally worth it...

Registered: December 2008
Posts: 31
Sigma 85mm f/1.4 EX DG HSM review by andre_
Review Date: 5/30/2012 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $850.00| Rating: 10 

Pros: great colors, and in general very high performances since f1.4, bokeh
Cons: color fringing in DX (Nikon D7000)

I've appreciated this lens together with the Nikon D700, and I think it's a very good choice to spare money (in comparison with the double costly Nikkor), keeping an high quality.

The bokeh is very similar to the Nikkor AFS, and even at f1.4 the definition is extremely high in the center, and far better than the Nikon AFD on the corners (the Nikon AFS is more linear).

The out of focus has a little CA in background (the foreground is virtualy perfect), but it's not disturbing.
I've never seen any flare, even shooting under a stage with the spot lights in the frame.

The AF is not the faster in the market, but is very precise, and it works well.

I'm only disappointed for the color fringing that appears with the D7000.
Every spot light prouces red fringing, and it's a bit frustrating.
But there's no problem with the D700.

A last word for the finiture.
The new "EX" is very different from the previous, and the feeling touching the lens is far better than before (the body is metallic, no plastic).
But I fear the propension to get scratched quite fast.

But it's really the only weakness I see, and I don't see any limit using this lens with a FF camera.
Highly reccomended!

Registered: August 2008
Posts: 4
Sigma 85mm f/1.4 EX DG HSM review by shrikrishna
Review Date: 5/28/2012 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 10 

Pros: Excellent sharpness, contrast, bokeh to die for
Cons: Weight

I dont need to justify this buy - an unbeatable value lens which I can pitch against nikon counter part.

Quick to grab focus, I shoot playing kids. Shoots like my other lenses - 24-70-200 nikkors.

Iwent for this knowing sigma's 10-20; and am not looking back. One of the most beautiful lenses.

It requires no focus adjustment on my d300. Focus accuracy equal to nikkors. I like the new finish of sigma. I had 10-20 from sigma previously, which indeed was a great buy.

Every maker has sample variations and third party variations are exaggerated as they stand against a pool of expensive counter parts. So often victims of suspicion : so folks who are result oriented will enjoy the benefits of this lens.

There is only build quality compromise (the lens mount side exposes electronics within when focused at MFD), but am not sure how many of us really thrash our equipments.

Only other cons is its weight. It is slightly (+150g?) heavy and bulky.
People should change perspective about Sigma.

Registered: January 2012
Posts: 4
Sigma 85mm f/1.4 EX DG HSM review by patricius6
Review Date: 3/10/2012 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $1,000.00| Rating: 10 

Pros: super
Cons: non

Rarely give him down from the body

Registered: April 2010
Posts: 2
Sigma 85mm f/1.4 EX DG HSM review by mgprasetya
Review Date: 6/4/2011 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $920.00| Rating: 10 

Pros: very good optics
Cons: back focus. need body with AF micro adjustment

this lens is sharp wide open.

at f/1.4, the picture is sharp, on the corner, even on FF camera -D700 .

i sold my nikon 85mm f/1.4D and got this lens because the nikon only sharp in the middle.

AF also fast, accurate, and consistent. the only issue i had was back focus. i had to do micro adjustment up to -10 on my camera. other than that, perfect. but, hey...even my nikon 24-70mm f/2.8 had back focus issue as well, and i had to adjust to -15 :-(

here is the sample @wide open (please click "original" underneath the photo) :

* i focused on the boy's right eye.
* the picture is straight out of the camera in jpeg.
* No editing.
* in camera sharpness, i set to 6

Registered: May 2011
Posts: 1
Sigma 85mm f/1.4 EX DG HSM review by gdaniel
Review Date: 5/16/2011 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $1,000.00| Rating: 9 

Pros: Accurate and fast autofocus, good build quality and sharpness
Cons: MF ring not so good

I've bought this one after one trial week with 85 AF-S and AF-D.

While 85 AF-S is a bit sharper and has better corners , (but not by much) is it also 700 euro more expensive than the Sigma.

AF-D version is weaker in almost all respects, except maybe on bokeh ( probably those soft corners are helping here)

Fast and accurate AF, on a D300 using any mode ( including mounted flash + AF-assist illuminator ).

I think it is the fastest 85 f/1.4 lens. (AF speed wise)

It is an excellent lens and good value ( considering that AF-S is 700 Euro more , respective 400 Euro for the AF-D version.

..but as with any lens it is good to test it first!

Registered: November 2010
Posts: 19
Sigma 85mm f/1.4 EX DG HSM review by 3systemuser
Review Date: 12/24/2010 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 10 

Pros: sharp sharp sharp , better than the new Nikon G, no CA, no distortion.
Cons: it is like 82mm lens.

it is a wonderful prime , very sharp wide open and there is almost no distiortion with thsi lens.

and this lens focus much faster than my 85f1.2LMKll or Nikon 85f1.4G.

after I got this lens I decided to sell my Canon 85LMk2 because I never liked the ergonomics of the huge 85L lens (although I loved its IQ).

I also selling the Nikon 85G.

I am very happy with this lens and I will use it for both Canon and Nikon and when I need something really a 85mm lens , I use my Zeiss 85f1.4ZF2.

Note : this Sigma 85f1.4HSM is not really a 85mm lens it is shorter than both Nikon 85f1.4G AFS and Zeiss 85f1.4ZF2.

Registered: November 2010
Posts: 1
Sigma 85mm f/1.4 EX DG HSM review by thatkatmat
Review Date: 11/8/2010 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $899.00| Rating: 10 

Pros: Sharp contrasty lens with very accurate AF and solid build. New rubberlike coating on barrel of lens.
Cons: MF ring isn't dampened very well.

What a great lens...From the moment I mounted it on my 7D until now (about a week later) I've been blown away...first, by the build...It's solid and has a new rubberlike coating that just feels really good.
Next was the AF....I was really amazed at how fast the AF was (after owning multiple 85L's). It's twice as fast as the mkII and maybe more importantly....Just as accurate.
The image quality is a bit of a mix between near as good as the L.... to... better than the L. It seems about as sharp as the L while the CA and fringing is much better controlled than the L. The bokeh is Signature Sigma 9 blade smoothness, like the EX50/1.4..It's very similar to the L. Very nice...Also....handles flare like a champ using the suplied hood.

All in all, a really nice lens

Registered: December 2008
Posts: 2
Sigma 85mm f/1.4 EX DG HSM review by engrmariano
Review Date: 10/25/2010 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $1,173.00| Rating: 9 

Pros: sharp, quite fast & accurate af, nice built, petal shaped hood, nice finish.
Cons: quite visible color fringing on out of focus, high contrast area when wide open.

sigma nailed it this time...

used on 550D & 5D2, results are stunning...

on par with 85L2 for half the price...

Registered: October 2010
Posts: 3
Sigma 85mm f/1.4 EX DG HSM review by uforias
Review Date: 10/24/2010 Would you recommend the product? No | Total Spent: $1,250.00| Rating: 3 

Pros: Good Optics
Cons: Inconsistent Auto Focus

Unfortunately another disapointment with Sigma Quality Control. They have ruined an optical excellent product due to inconsistent Auto Focus. At least with Canon gear, you better stay away from Sigma Lens. I have to compensate from -5 micro adjustment for up 1 meter distance to almost +20 on the worst scenario for longer distances. Furthermore, even microadjusted the keeper rates are below 25% because the AF isn't consistent.


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