Sigma AF 50mm f/1.4 EX DG HSM (FX) - Review / Test Report - Sample Images & Verdict
Lens Reviews - Nikon / Nikkor (full format)

Sample Shots

The following sample shots were taken with a D3x and RAW-converted via CaptureOne.

Click on a thumbnail to view the original file (opens in a separate window).

Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 100
Focal Length 50.0mm
Aperture: f/5.6
Exposure 1/250s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 100
Focal Length 50.0mm
Aperture: f/2.0
Exposure 1/2000s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 50.0mm
Aperture: f/1.4
Exposure 1/5000s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 50.0mm
Aperture: f/5.6
Exposure 1/100s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 50.0mm
Aperture: f/4.0
Exposure 1/200s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 50.0mm
Aperture: f/9.0
Exposure 1/160s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 50.0mm
Aperture: f/5.6
Exposure 1/500s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 50.0mm
Aperture: f/8.0
Exposure 1/400s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 50.0mm
Aperture: f/4.0
Exposure 1/3200s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 100
Focal Length 50.0mm
Aperture: f/3.2
Exposure 1/3200s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 100
Focal Length 50.0mm
Aperture: f/4.0
Exposure 1/1600s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 100
Focal Length 50.0mm
Aperture: f/4.0
Exposure 1/1000s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 200
Focal Length 50.0mm
Aperture: f/5.6
Exposure 1/1000s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 100
Focal Length 50.0mm
Aperture: f/1.4
Exposure 1/8000s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 100
Focal Length 50.0mm
Aperture: f/4.0
Exposure 1/800s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 100
Focal Length 50.0mm
Aperture: f/1.4
Exposure 1/8000s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 100
Focal Length 50.0mm
Aperture: f/2.0
Exposure 1/3200s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 100
Focal Length 50.0mm
Aperture: f/4.0
Exposure 1/1000s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 100
Focal Length 50.0mm
Aperture: f/2.0
Exposure 1/2500s
Make NIKON CORPORATION
Model NIKON D3X
ISO Speed 100
Focal Length 50.0mm
Aperture: f/2.8
Exposure 1/1600s

Verdict

The Sigma AF 50mm f/1.4 EX DG HSM struggles to deliver convincing performance on full format cameras. The center quality of the lens is certainly fine and even great from f/2 onwards. Unfortunately the border & corner performance is rather disappointing. It's downright soft at large apertures and never really better than good even at the very best setting (f/8).

The amount of vignetting is quite heavy at f/1.4 but that's rather typical for such lenses. If you stop down to f/2.8 this will not be a real issue anymore though. The lens produces moderate barrel distortions which is a tad more than the standard in this lens class. Lateral CAs are very well controlled and not really field relevant. The bokeh is quite good for a 50mm prime, although not perfect either.

A real highlight of the lens is certainly its build quality. Unlike most 50mm f/1.4 it features a metal body and a good focus ring. The HSM AF drive is very fast and virtually silent. Unfortunately the lens suffers fromrather prnounced residual spherical aberrations (focus shifts) when stopping down so accurate focusing can be tricky.

The high build quality combined with the good bokeh and excellent sharpness in the image center are the quality chacteristics of this lens. They may render it more attractive than other fast 50mm primes for some, even despite its otherwise less than stellar optical performance.

Optical Quality:    
Field Quality: (Low light-/Shallow Depth-of-Field Photography)
Mechanical Quality:
Price/Performance:
      
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