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Sigma Versus Sony: Which E-Mount 35mm f/1.4 Lens is Higher?

Inside just a few months of one another at first of 2021, each Sony and Sigma introduced 35mm f/1.4 lenses for full-frame Sony E-mount cameras. They had been simply begging for a comparability to be made.

This isn’t the primary foray into the 35mm f/1.4 panorama for both firm. Sony had the Distagon 35mm f/1.4 ZA obtainable for full-frame mirrorless cameras since 2015. Alternatively, the Sigma 35mm f/1.4 DG HSM ART lens has an E-mount however functionally is the older DSLR design fitted with a non-removable converter. In each circumstances, the brand new lenses in contrast right here will not be updates, however utterly unique designs. Let’s take a better take a look at the Sony 35mm f/1.4 G Master and Sigma 35mm f/1.4 DG DN Art to find out which new lens comes out on high.

Sony 35mm f/1.4 GM
Sigma 35mm f/1.4 DG DN Artwork

Design and Construct High quality

Trying on the lenses facet by facet, essentially the most obvious distinction in type could be that the Sigma is longer. In sensible use, the additional size was by no means an issue find a spot in my bag or with dealing with. If you happen to run a really tight images setup with restricted area and an additional half-inch right here means taking away a half-inch of drugs elsewhere, this may be an issue. For many of us although, it’s not a deal-breaker.

The identical goes for the load, the place the Sony is a quarter-pound lighter. Like with the slight distinction in measurement, the load is just not sufficient of a distinction that I discover might affect any buying determination by itself. I respect that the Sony lens achieves these marks, however on the finish of the day, I can’t say it’s extraordinarily essential comparatively. We aren’t speaking two inches and virtually two kilos of distinction just like the Sony 14mm f/1.8 GM versus Sigma 14mm f/1.8 DG HSM.

Persevering with the theme of non-difference makers, each lenses share 67mm threading for filters, that means one gained’t have any further hidden possession price over the opposite on this space.

Each lenses characteristic the identical set of controls together with the main target and aperture rings, aperture de-click swap, focus maintain button, and focus mode swap. The aperture ring can both be set to particular f-stop numbers manually or be managed via the digicam utilizing the “A” setting.

Surprisingly, it’s Sigma that goes a step above right here with the addition of an aperture locking swap. This prevents the aperture ring from transferring off of the “A” setting, which avoids the state of affairs the place the digicam doesn’t need to reply to aperture modifications and the photographer solely later realizes the ring had mistakenly moved to guide. Factors go to Sigma for considering of this as a result of it’s not unusual for the aperture settings to get twisted whereas mounting the lens to a digicam or all through use when my hand works in that space whereas taking pictures.

Spending a few weeks with the lenses is just not going to color the total image of construct high quality, however I did my finest. All through my time on the island of Kauaʻi, I handled loads of mud, rain showers, sand, moist surfaces, humidity, and sudden temperature modifications. Even after essentially the most attempting situations, there have been no obvious ailing results on both lens. This isn’t to say nothing will develop over time, however they each appeared reliable sufficient to not child round so far as my restricted time might inform.

Picture High quality

That is what all of it comes all the way down to. Once I take into consideration the variations between the Sony and Sigma 35mm f/1.4 lenses, and why somebody would pay $500 extra for the Sony, these are the three fundamental causes I can give you.


The very very first thing I observed when taking pictures similar frames with each lenses is the distortion variations. Within the instance beneath, I’ve drawn a line above the horizon to extra plainly see that the Sigma reveals barrel distortion whereas the Sony may be very nicely managed.

Sony 35mm f/1.4 GM
Sigma 35mm f/1.4 DG DN Artwork

In fact, barrel distortion is just not the tip of the world and might be mechanically corrected whereas importing pictures to RAW processing software program. I can spin an “benefit” to the Sigma in that it additionally provides extra subject of view to a scene over Sony. Say I’m photographing in a forest with no simply identifiable horizon line; it could be welcome to have extra of the scene in my composition at the price of distortion that nobody may even inform is there.

Sony on the left, Sigma on the appropriate.


Each the Sony and Sigma lenses have sufficient obvious sharpness that crosses the edge of being good lenses to being nice lenses. Nonetheless, on the excessive edges of the body with the Sigma, there may be extra of a drop-off of sharpness with photographs taken extensive open in comparison with Sony. The Sony lens retains issues collectively remarkably nicely. When stopped all the way down to f/8 within the instance beneath, each lenses are similar in sharpness.

Sony 35mm at f/1.4, full crop high proper nook.
Sigma 35mm at f/1.4, full crop high proper nook.
Sony 35mm at f/8, full crop high proper nook.
Sigma 35mm at f/8, full crop high proper nook.

Associated to lens sharpness, I’ll add that after I in contrast vignetting, flaring, and shade fringing, I discovered that every one of those are equally nicely managed. Leaping to the part beneath, you’ll discover some ghosting and aberrations crop up within the Sigma f/1.4 and Sony f/8 pictures.


I additionally in contrast the out-of-focus qualities of those lenses. Each characteristic an 11-bladed round aperture, which for fast reference is a step up from the 9-bladed aperture that their predecessors I discussed at first of this text used. Extra aperture bladed ought to imply much more completely round bokeh with much less noticeable straight edges, and that’s precisely what we get.

The distinction I see is how outlined the out-of-focus edges are. With Sony, the perimeters of the bokeh balls soften away and into one another. Sigma alternatively has a extra distinguished form and every ball holds up as its personal fairly than smearing.

Truthfully, it’s two totally different appears to be like and I wouldn’t essentially say one is healthier than the opposite. It is determined by private style. If you happen to prefer to shoot with out-of-focus lights within the body, the Sigma would possibly even have extra pop and extra of a “wow” issue. That mentioned, Sony’s lens will possible be a contact higher at blowing out ugly backgrounds into indistinguishable bokeh pudding and for that, I’d think about it the extra conventional winner on this space.


Neither lens completely blew me away in autofocus efficiency at f/1.4 when paired with the Sony a7R III. Each are excellent for much less demanding autofocus wants like face monitoring an individual across the body or Animal Eye AF for pet portraits, however when it got here to monitoring something sooner, neither carried out nicely more often than not.

After tinkering away with my digicam’s monitoring sensitivity settings and seeing if the Sigma and Sony had been just a bit finicky on their preferences, I deemed each lenses equal of their autofocus efficiency when paired with the a7R III.

Sony at f/1.4
Sigma at f/1.4
Sony at f/1.4
Sigma at f/1.4
Sony at f/1.4
Sigma at f/1.4

It’s a Good 12 months to Purchase a 35mm Lens

At first of this comparability, I wrote that the dimensions and weight had been nothing that distinctly made a winner, however all through testing it was clear the Sony 35mm f/1.4 GM all the time had as slight of an edge because it did in these two bodily classes. There was by no means any single space that immediately topped it a winner, however Sony holds an edge nonetheless. It’s after compounding all the pieces I threw on the two lenses that the slight edge-case wins added up.

Sony is the winner of this comparability, and I believe it’s price spending the additional $500 for it contemplating the lifetime of lens possession.

However wait! It must be mentioned that the Sigma 35mm f/1.4 DG DN Art is just not unhealthy by any means. I’m certain there shall be a few of you who will evaluate these two lenses and determine for your self that the Sigma remains to be the higher worth, and that’s utterly cheap. The Sony is my winner, however there was no loser.

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