Astrophotography is the reply. The query is, “what does this lens excel at?” I’ve confirmed it by having the ability to use it to movie the northern lights in real-time, paired with the Sony A7S III. I’ve additionally examined the L-mount version of this lens with the Sigma FP-L. I’ve to say that in each situations, I’m sufficiently impressed at base-level, however there’s a lot extra. That is the Sigma 20mm F/1.4 DG DN Art lens. Let’s dive in.
Sigma have been within the sport for over 60 years. Their expertise has culminated within the launch of some unimaginable glass, and this new Artwork lens of their line-up actually packs a strong punch. This new lens takes the whole lot that Sigma is aware of about large, quick lenses and places it multi function place.
This prime 20mm lens offers a area of view that isn’t unnaturally large however is large sufficient to include sufficient of a scene to see plenty of options. In actual phrases, it’s 94.5˚. This angle makes this lens significantly helpful for astrophotography. Particularly after we contemplate the utmost aperture of f/1.4. On the different finish of the size, the minimal aperture is f/16. I’ve discovered the 11 diaphragm blades create a pleasant bokeh impact in addition to exact motion between aperture values. (Nicely, as a lot bokeh you will get with a 20mm lens anyhow).
The 82mm filter measurement is pretty frequent and makes it straightforward to seek out suitable filters. I’ve discovered this to be an issue with the often-uncommon filter measurement of different ultra-wide lenses. A lens that I’ve typically labeled as my ‘go-to’ for astrophotography is the Nikkor 14-24mm f/2.8, however the bulbous face requires specialised filters. These usually are not unimaginable to get, however they do price. Sigma have prevented this drawback altogether by utilizing a standard thread measurement and flat lens entrance.
By now, I’ve thrown fairly a little bit of technical information at you and truly avoided giving my opinion, so it’s time for me to open up about this lens.
It’s wonderful! Truthfully, that is an Astro dream. I’ve been searching for the final word aurora filming lens for years, and that is it. The entire sky opens as much as this lens, flooding the sensor with gentle from the massive aperture. Even with an APS-C sensor, the lens remains to be 30mm equal.
As somebody who usually shoots in chilly situations, one among my major concerns with lenses is the chilly. This lens has a lens heater retainer which permits mounting a heater to the lens. The heater prevents the entrance glass parts from freezing or struggling condensation. The lens is constructed from thermally secure composite supplies, so the entire thing feels very strong and durable. I by no means checked, however I assume the lens doesn’t contract or develop underneath altering temperatures both. From what I can inform, it’s a beast that will battle even probably the most demanding situations.
Optically, I couldn’t detect any geometric distortion or chromatic aberration. There are 17 parts within the lens, so I suppose Sigma have been fairly beneficiant with glass.
The switches and rings are straightforward to function and really feel very deliberate of their mechanisms. Talking of mechanisms, the autofocus is pushed by Sigma’s Hyper Sonic Motor, powering by means of the complete focus vary in lower than one second and hitting tack-sharp focus each time.
The Sigma 20mm f/1.4 DG DN Artwork lens is fairly strong. It weighs in at 630g (22.2oz) for the E-mount model. This isn’t precisely small and lightweight, however Sigma have clearly centered on the standard of the optics right here. For what it affords, I wouldn’t actually name it ‘heavy’. The photographs are very sharp.
The large aperture permits for nice focusing even in darkish situations, and though it’s largely as much as the capabilities of the digital camera, this lens goes a great distance to assist. After I used this lens together with the Sony A7S III to movie the northern lights it was actually arduous to overlook focus. In truth, I encountered solely person error when focussing. The lens and digital camera received it proper. I typically discover that autofocus motors make a good quantity of noise, however with Sigma 20mm f/1.4 DG DN Artwork lens it’s hardly noticeable, and it’s quick.
Photographing the night time sky and its options is straightforward with this lens. It definitely isn’t going to pick a galaxy, however for large pictures of the sky it’s best. I’ve used it loads to shoot the northern lights and even confidently included it within the Final Northern Lights Filming Rig article I wrote just lately. The important thing to aurora pictures is to get as a lot gentle in as doable to retain the small print of the movement of the dancing lights. This must be balanced towards the accessible gentle and the sensor noise created by taking pictures at midnight. One of the simplest ways to realize that is with a large aperture
I’ve put some emphasis on the truth that this lens is right for astrophotography, and rightly so, however it’s truly nice for lots for lots of photographically demanding conditions. Whereas the sector of view doesn’t precisely make it sound like a fantastic portrait lens, regardless of the depth of area sounding nice, I discovered that it creates a fantastic visible impact. The shortage of distortion helps retain face and physique proportions while leaving loads of area for the surroundings, all in a linear perspective.
My general impression of this lens is excellent. Evaluating it to older variants there are definitely enhancements and when in comparison with comparable lenses by different producers, that is my selection. It’s sharp, light-weight and strong. My solely criticism is that I don’t like having an aperture ring that doesn’t lock in place. It’s straightforward to knock the aperture away from the place it’s set. Except for that, I can’t fault this lens. Sigma, stick with it.