In my last posting, described my joy working with a couple of new lenses including the Sigma 85mm f1.4. This week I would like expand on that post with a more in depth look at the Sigma 85mm f1.4.
First and foremost, most people are aware of Sigma and their lenses. I know many people have had concerns about quality of this specific lens as initial runs seems to have issues. I on the other hand did not have these issues. You may be wondering why? Well I purchased form a local shop, and carried my Canon 5D MKIII with me. The owner of the store was willing to let me test out the lens for quiet some time, before I made the purchase.
On my previous Canon 7D my Canon 50mm 1.4 really was a workhorse and one of my favorite lens. With my 5D MKIII, I was searching for some lenses that I found to be useful in low light, and still give great portrait shots. Enter the Canon 85mm 1.2L IS II USM. What an incredible lens. It truly is a wonderful portrait lens and is incredible in low light. I could only find 2 issues with this lens.
First the lens is very unforgiving. If you don’t take your time to set up the shot you will quickly realize everything you shot was out of focus. But with practice and more skill acquired this can be mitigated. The second of course has to the price at nearly $2000, that’s pretty steep, considering the competition is nearly half that cost.
I have perviously never owned a Sigma lens, as my previous experience with them was a little lack luster. But after some research and some hands on experience I was quiet astonished at how good this lens was for the price. It really can produce wonderful images in low light.
The lens build quality is very good, and comes with a lens hood and adapter for APS-C sensors. The Sigma 85mm lens has a 9 blade circular diaphragm for creating beautiful bokeh which many photographers and videographers look for.
The Canon vs Sigma debate here still holds true, as I found the Sigma 85mm was not as good as the Canon 85mm. In low light the Canon also is quicker with a f1.2 vs Sigma’s 1.4 . However at half the cost of the Canon, the Sigma really is the best bang for the buck.
In many scenarios most clients can not even tell the difference between their images. In my opinion the Sigma has 90% of the Canon image quality at half the cost. I have to admit this reason alone was enough to have me pull the trigger on one. However if you need that little bit more speed that Canon provides, and have the extra change lying around. You will not be disappointed. At the end of the day only you can make that decision. I have already made mine. The Sigma 85mm 1.4 is here to stay and my new favorite portrait lens.