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Keywords: Sigma Canon Nikon Minolta Pentax Wide Zoom 35mm DG HSM tested


sarahfox

Registered: March 2009
Posts: 1
Sigma 12-24mm f/4.5-5.6 EX DG Aspherical HSM review by sarahfox
Review Date: 3/2/2009 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $630.00| Rating: 9 

 
Pros: low distortion, low CA, great build
Cons: bulging front element

This is an extreme lens, to be sure -- the widest rectilinear lens available for an SLR. (Voigtlander also has a 12 prime.) As with any extreme lens, it's going to have a few issues. The design probably requires tighter tolerances than Sigma can deliver on a reliable basis. Even so, it's an amazing lens that delivers very good sharpness, average contrast, and exceptional control of distortion and CA. Focus is fast, silent, and precise. I'm quite a fan of this lens, which I find extraordinarily useful for architectural photography.
lextalionis

Registered: October 2007
Posts: 82
Sigma 12-24mm f/4.5-5.6 EX DG Aspherical HSM review by lextalionis
Review Date: 8/12/2008 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $780.00| Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Low distortion and very good IQ, even wide open.
Cons: Some flare and the front element inhibits use of filters.

Low distortion and very good IQ, even wide open.


Some flare and the front element inhibits use of filters.


Sample Photos taken with a Canon 5D


-Lex
John H Maw

Registered: November 2006
Posts: 15
Sigma 12-24mm f/4.5-5.6 EX DG Aspherical HSM review by John H Maw
Review Date: 1/14/2007 Would you recommend the product? No | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 6 

 
Pros: Moderately compact, useful zoom range
Cons: Image quality should be better, and more consistalt from one lens to another

Sigma lenses can be quite variable. The first one of these I got was truly awful. Very uneven sharpness across the frame. I sent it back and it was replaced, but the new one is not great. On a full frame camera even the wonderful DXO can't correct all its failings.Shame as it is a moderately compact lens with a useful focal length range. My advice would be to only buy where you can try the lens in the shop and see the images there and if it looks good take that same lens. Mine works best at f11, and preferably not set all the way to 12mm.
leprechaun

Registered: December 2006
Posts: 7
Sigma 12-24mm f/4.5-5.6 EX DG Aspherical HSM review by leprechaun
Review Date: 1/7/2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 8 

 
Pros:
Cons:

Got this lens very cheap at a pawn shop. Use it for film, but not digital.


It's a good lens, but I prefer my 20mm 2.8 overall. Use the Sigma when I need the extra width. Bought an 11-18 for digital work.


This lens cannot mount a polarizer without vingetting below about 20mm, hence the preference for the other lenses.


I only use this lens for ultrawide on film.


For the right person and use this is a good lens. If you need a wide lens to shoot indoors, it's a contender for film or digital. If you shoot film and use no filters it's just fine. Deleivers good performance to value for its strret price.
rupa13

Registered: December 2006
Posts: 8
Sigma 12-24mm f/4.5-5.6 EX DG Aspherical HSM review by rupa13
Review Date: 12/31/2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $750.00| Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Very wide. Sharp over f.5,6. No distortion at all, a miracle!
Cons: Needs to be stopped at f.8 and over for the best results

I used to have a Sigma 15-30 before purchasing this lens, but I needed a larger angle coverage for some architectural pictures. This lens has no real distortion even at 12mm, and it's quite sharp if you use it at f.5,6 and over. I have no idea of what it could produce on a full format SLR, but it gives excellent results on my canon EOS 20D.
caries

Registered: December 2006
Posts: 4
Sigma 12-24mm f/4.5-5.6 EX DG Aspherical HSM review by caries
Review Date: 12/25/2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $520.00| Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Great build quality, good color and sharpness
Cons: Slow, Not sharp evenly throughout the zoom range

Great inexpensive wide angle lens. amasingly solid construction and great color rendition. Could be a little more sharp when zoomed-in. Love that lens.
wl2

Registered: December 2006
Posts: 7
Sigma 12-24mm f/4.5-5.6 EX DG Aspherical HSM review by wl2
Review Date: 12/24/2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Good build quality, smooth zoom and focus ring
Cons:

The lens is very well built. I compare it with the Nikor 12-24 DX lens when I made the purchase. The Nikor is a bit sharper but the Sigma wins on all the other aspects (distortion, CA control, ...). If Nikon makes a full frame DSLR one day...


I recently updated its chip for the D200 AF-ON issue. The service provided by Gentec Canada was excellence.


One thing, the NEF image files produced by this lens is not 100% compatible with Capture NX. The vignetting control does not work although the lens does not need the correction with APS size censor.


This is my favourite lens and it stays on the camera most of the time. Highly recommended!
mu55ster

Registered: October 2005
Posts: 9
Sigma 12-24mm f/4.5-5.6 EX DG Aspherical HSM review by mu55ster
Review Date: 11/17/2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Super wide and full frame
Cons: No filters :(

This is an amazing lens - the widest rectiliner zoom. The best thing about this lens is it's full frame, so works on my film body as well. it is large and the front element really bulges out - which leads me to my only gripe with the lens - no poleriser... i use them all the time, and although on a lens this wide it would not be as usefull as on a 40mm or even 28mm (in terms of its effect on the sky) it would still be nice to get rid of reflections off water etc. image quality is great for such a design feat, fantastic.
Ross_Alford

Registered: October 2005
Posts: 36
Sigma 12-24mm f/4.5-5.6 EX DG Aspherical HSM review by Ross_Alford
Review Date: 11/3/2005 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: None indicated| Rating: 7 

 
Pros: covers full 35mm frame, very low distortion and CA
Cons: relatively low contrast and sharpness, particularly at longer focal lengths

I bought one in April 2004, used it happily for over a year with a D70. As mentioned in the pros and cons section, it does have remarkably low linear distortion and almost no evidence of CA, both very good points. Relatively low tendency to flare, probably helped by the built-in hood. Somewhat low contrast and slightly different color rendition as compared to Nikkor lenses. Sharp enough that I was quite happy with it on the D70.


That said, its resolution limit must fall somewhere between the demands of the D70 sensor and the D2x sensor. Shooting with a D2x it is noticeably unsharp near corners at 12mm, and this gets far worse at 24mm, extending to whole edges to about the outer 1/6 of the frame on each side. This is at my typical shooting apertures of f/8 or so. It's possible that mine has had a knock at some point in over a year of use, but it still looks sharp on the D70, so I suspect that it really just can't cope with a need for 1.4 times as many lines in each direction on the same size sensor. Never did try it with film so cannot comment on full-frame performance.


in summary, if you are shooting with a 6 or 8 MP APS sized sensor, this lens should work well. It may also work nicely on a full frame sensor. High-pixel-density sensors may reveal problems. I recommend it, but with reservations.


examples with the D70:


http://www.pbase.com/northqueenslandphotos/image/50127482


http://www.pbase.com/northqueenslandphotos/image/50127478
keydet

Registered: October 2005
Posts: 5
Sigma 12-24mm f/4.5-5.6 EX DG Aspherical HSM review by keydet
Review Date: 10/29/2005 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $550.00| Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Full-frame useable, low distortion, well-controlled flare
Cons: Lacks sharpness at wide apertures, variable maximum aperture, limited filtration options

This is an amazing zoom in that it brings the 12mm focal length to 35mm film and full-frame digital, without the distortion one might expect in such an extreme focal length. The lens features Sigma's sound EX finish & construction; solid and only moderately bulky.
The lens is at its best around f8, as it loses sharpness wide open. It also has remarkably well-controlled flare, important in such a wide lens. Shooting into a full sun produces a string of small, colorful flare spots that I've used many times to accentuate my compositions.
Unlike most competing ultra-wide zooms -- all of which are limited to APS-C sized digital sensors -- the Sigma 12-24 has a variable maximum aperture of f4.5-5.6 rather than the constant f4 of the digital-only zooms. With its built-in petal hood, the Sigma can only mount filters with the aid of the two-piece lens cap, which doubles as an 82mm filter adapter. In this configuration, vignetting occurs as early as 21-22mm. A rear filter mount for gels allows limited filtration at wider focal lengths.
If you do any full-frame work (film or digital) I would recommend this lens highly over the competition. You can produce amazing photos at a true 12mm focal length and it provides highly effective wide zoom capability for DSLRs with smaller sensors.


 






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