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Old 02-21-2013, 01:00 PM   #1
DoleWhipDVC
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Canon 50mm 1.4 or Sigma 30mm 1.4?

Hi all. I've got the go ahead to buy another lens. I've been using the Canon 1.8 50mm for dark rides and doing o.k., but would love the additional capability of a 1.4 So, all of you with an opinion, if you could have one of these as a choice (mostly for dark ride captures since I can use the 1.8 for portraits) which would you go with and why. I know the 50 will get me closer to the subject as it is tighter than the 30, but what other considerations might there be? I'm using a Canon 40D body. Thanks as always for your thoughts.
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Old 02-21-2013, 01:12 PM   #2
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I prefer the 30 over a 50 for the reason you stated. It is wider. For me, a 50mm focal length is to tight for the dark rides. The interesting lens is the new Sigma 35 f1.4. It's a full frame lens if you are ever thinking of upgrading and can be used on an APS-C.
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Old 02-21-2013, 01:14 PM   #3
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Personally I think a 50mm lens is a little tight for most dark rides (POTC may be an exception to the rule). Therefore I would go for the 30mm lens, and take the additional 2/3 stop of additional light due to the f/1.4 aperture.

I just picked up the new Sigma 35mm f/1.4 and have been extremely impressed....this is one very sharp lens that is receiving rave reviews among the photography community. I can't wait to see until the end of this year to get back to the World and take some more dark ride shots.
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Old 02-21-2013, 01:15 PM   #4
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I just bought the Sigma 30 for my K-5II. My copy focuses fine and is sharp at f1.4. The only downfall to this lens is the corners don't really get very sharp, but who buys a f1.4 lens to shoot at f8. To me, the 50 would be too narrow for me. The 30 is great on APSC. If you were to go FF, the Sigma 30 only made for crop sensors.
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Old 02-21-2013, 01:23 PM   #5
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Personally, I'd go for the sigma.

Three main reasons:

- you've already got a 50mm f1.8, so I personally wouldn't buy 2 primes of the same focal length with apertures so close together

- I personally find that 30mm is a "better" focal length than 50mm

- You can crop down from 30mm to 50mm if you really needed to, but you can't invent sections of an image to widen from 50mm to 30mm
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Old 02-21-2013, 02:55 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ukstitch View Post
Personally, I'd go for the sigma.

Three main reasons:

- you've already got a 50mm f1.8, so I personally wouldn't buy 2 primes of the same focal length with apertures so close together

- I personally find that 30mm is a "better" focal length than 50mm

- You can crop down from 30mm to 50mm if you really needed to, but you can't invent sections of an image to widen from 50mm to 30mm
here's another reason for the Sigma - it's on sale for $289 at B&H and Adorama

Last edited by bob100; 02-21-2013 at 03:21 PM.
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Old 02-21-2013, 03:01 PM   #7
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here's another reason for the Sigma - it's on sale for $289 at B&H
Wow. That is an awesome deal. Anyone without this lens should grab it now. The newer 35mm sounds like a great lens you'd be hard pressed to justify $600 worth of additional good out of it.
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Old 02-21-2013, 03:48 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DoleWhipDVC View Post
Hi all. I've got the go ahead to buy another lens. I've been using the Canon 1.8 50mm for dark rides and doing o.k., but would love the additional capability of a 1.4 So, all of you with an opinion, if you could have one of these as a choice (mostly for dark ride captures since I can use the 1.8 for portraits) which would you go with and why. I know the 50 will get me closer to the subject as it is tighter than the 30, but what other considerations might there be? I'm using a Canon 40D body. Thanks as always for your thoughts.
There isn't really a huge gain between the Canon 50 f/1.8 and f/1.4. You get a little bump on everything, but to me it's not a gain worth the cost if you already own the 50mm f/1.8.

I'd go with the Sigma 30mm. Not only because I think it's a better value and better overall lens than the Canon 50mm f/1.4, but if you already have the 50mm f/1.8 then it gives you one more prime focal length in your bag.
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Old 02-21-2013, 05:38 PM   #9
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Hmmm.... seems the Sigma may be the way to go. Thanks to all who responded. If anyone else has additional thoughts, please chime in!
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Old 02-21-2013, 06:03 PM   #10
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ARRGGGHHHH..... So I went over to Adorama and B&H to check on that great price. While there I'm reading lots of reviews that say the Sigma is unreliable, focuses poorly wide open, and may need to be sent back for recalibration of the lens if problems occur. I'm not sure I want to drop money on a lens that I may need to send back the first day I shoot with it. Also, this is a discontinued lens?

Photo chick makes a good point in saying the 1.4 is a small bump in performance over the 1.8. Now I'm wondering if it's even worth making the purchase. Anyone with experience with the Sigma 30mm 1.4 out there that may care to comment? Thanks!
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Old 02-21-2013, 06:07 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DoleWhipDVC View Post
ARRGGGHHHH..... So I went over to Adorama and B&H to check on that great price. While there I'm reading lots of reviews that say the Sigma is unreliable, focuses poorly wide open, and may need to be sent back for recalibration of the lens if problems occur. I'm not sure I want to drop money on a lens that I may need to send back the first day I shoot with it. Also, this is a discontinued lens?

Photo chick makes a good point in saying the 1.4 is a small bump in performance over the 1.8. Now I'm wondering if it's even worth making the purchase. Anyone with experience with the Sigma 30mm 1.4 out there that may care to comment? Thanks!
I will say that if you need to send your lens in for calibration, Sigma is very quick and reliable. I sent that one and another of theirs in about 18 months ago and am happy with how it went.

I would still go with the Sigma. The new version has micro focus adjustment in the lens, but I thought it was cheeky to build that in at such a substantially higher price knowing that's the weak link the lens is known for.
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Old 02-21-2013, 06:25 PM   #12
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I have had the 30 for about a year and a half. At f1.4, I did have some front focusing that went away as I closed down the aperture and extended the DOF. I never took it in (I have a factory repair center 15 minutes from my house) until just recently. I had it back in three days. Before this center opened, I had to send my 70-200 in for an autofocus issue and they had it back to me (from New York) in 10 days from the time I sent it. Their service is extremely quick. With the 5 year warranty, for me, there isn't a downside with Sigma. Because I use my equipment extensively, every (motor racing) offseason is one of getting equipment repaired, cleaned and preparing for the start of a new season. This offseason has seen two lenses, two vertical battery grips and two cameras repaired. This is a normal offseason for me. I wouldn't be afraid of purchasing the lens. Besides its those that have a problem who are the most vocal. The thousands (+) that don't have a problem, you never hear from.
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Old 02-21-2013, 06:25 PM   #13
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I have used the Sigma 30mm f/1.4. I found it to be a very good mid-grade prime. The 2 copies I've used were both fine, but I know that doesn't mean they all are. Also, I tend to wonder when I see people with focus problems... how much is the lens and how much is the person. You never really know. With the price of the 30mm it invites a lot of entry level photographers who don't realize the finickiness of focusing primes wide open so I tend to keep that in mind when I read the reviews.

Is there a new Sigma 30 coming out? I know they have the newish 35mm that is priced much higher and for full frame, where the 30 is crop only.
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Old 02-21-2013, 06:32 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DoleWhipDVC View Post
ARRGGGHHHH..... So I went over to Adorama and B&H to check on that great price. While there I'm reading lots of reviews that say the Sigma is unreliable, focuses poorly wide open, and may need to be sent back for recalibration of the lens if problems occur. I'm not sure I want to drop money on a lens that I may need to send back the first day I shoot with it. Also, this is a discontinued lens?

Photo chick makes a good point in saying the 1.4 is a small bump in performance over the 1.8. Now I'm wondering if it's even worth making the purchase. Anyone with experience with the Sigma 30mm 1.4 out there that may care to comment? Thanks!
I read a brief article on Popular Photography's website that stated Sigma is coming out with a new version of the 30mm f/1.4...hence the discounted price. I have no information regarding the release date or price. But if the new 30mm lens is anything like the 35mm then it might be worth waiting.

http://www.popphoto.com/gear/2013/01...anon-and-nikon
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Old 02-21-2013, 06:36 PM   #15
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I have used the Sigma 30mm f/1.4. I found it to be a very good mid-grade prime. The 2 copies I've used were both fine, but I know that doesn't mean they all are. Also, I tend to wonder when I see people with focus problems... how much is the lens and how much is the person. You never really know. With the price of the 30mm it invites a lot of entry level photographers who don't realize the finickiness of focusing primes wide open so I tend to keep that in mind when I read the reviews.

Is there a new Sigma 30 coming out? I know they have the newish 35mm that is priced much higher and for full frame, where the 30 is crop only.
Yes. Its been announced but not yet available. I believe it has a computer interface that will allow for adjusting the focus yourself instead of having to send it in. Of course, it comes with a price! Right now the "old" one is a steal at $289. I think I paid $439 or $489 for mine.
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