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An f2.8 shootout

Discussion in 'Adapted Lenses' started by quezra, Dec 3, 2012.

  1. quezra

    quezra TalkEmount Top Veteran

    916
    Aug 22, 2012
    So my Sigmas arrived today! And had to run them up against my Canons... the results were interesting. Haven't tested corner performance though.

    All shots are 1/20s, ISO400, JPEG straight-out-of-camera, shot in my living room at night. I did view the images in Photoshop at 100%... here the compression will spoil them somewhat. So pixel peepers sorry if it's not a perfect comparison and these are after all my opinions only.

    First off, the Canon FL 55/1.2 @2.8.
    096.
    Tack sharp everywhere, but we already knew that :D

    Going wider, the Sigma 30 @2.8
    097.
    Fabulous. Just wow. I was going to immediately resell this lens as my favorite 28/2 is so close yet faster, but now I'm torn.

    Canon FDn 28/2 @2.8
    098.
    This was strange. It was nice and sharp, but much darker than all the others. When I shot it again at the middle notch between 2 and 2.8, it was exactly the same brightness as the other photos.

    Canon FD 24/2.8 @2.8
    098.
    Very disappointing. I thought the 24 was my sharpest FD lens, but that impression appears to be because I constantly shoot my 28 at f2.0. It's poorer than the rest.

    Sigma 19/2.8 @2.8
    100.
    Now we're in such wide territory that it's hard to really see the lens lettering. But this was as sharp as I could get it at 9.5x magnification, and it's softer than the 28, probably on par with the 24. Did I get a bad copy or is the 19 not as sharp as the 30?
     
  2. davect01

    davect01 Super Moderator

    Aug 20, 2011
    Fountain Hills, AZ
    Dave
    Nice collection. You gonna keep them all?
     
  3. quezra

    quezra TalkEmount Top Veteran

    916
    Aug 22, 2012
    I'm going to sell the 30 and 24, but I like the 30 so much I don't mind asking for a higher price than I initially planned (but still below street) and if it doesn't sell oh well :). Hoping to get rid of the 24 at cost, I wanted the 19mm as my point-and-shoot to replace it, but I was a bit disappointed given its reputation. Certainly thought the 30 and 28 beat it, but I should take it outdoors and test it properly. I know I can sell my 28 at profit but it will not be going anywhere until the Zeiss and Sony 32/35 are out.

    But my god I am getting more and more impressed with the FDn 28 everyday. First it held its own against the Voigtlander ultron @f2 and now against the Sigma @f2.8. I'm actually thinking of scrounging around ebay and paying a premium for a mint copy.

    Edit: oh and you can try prying my minty 55/1.2 out of my cold dead hands :p
     
  4. applemint

    applemint TalkEmount Veteran

    245
    Sep 20, 2012
    I don't own either, but I have read that the 30mm is a bit better than the 19mm but that overall they are (should) be fairly similar. However I would not rule out sample variation, especially with Sigma who are said to not always have the tightest quality control.
     
  5. Jefenator

    Jefenator TalkEmount Top Veteran

    876
    Nov 23, 2012
    Oregon, USA
    Jeff
    Thanks for sharing! When I ran a similar shootout, I found that the Sigma 30mm had better corners wide open than my other lenses did, stopped down. Yikes!! :D

    Before you list your 28/2, you might consider running a BOKEH test. I would love to eventually find (then somehow justify) a fast 28mm as a good wide-normal walkabout that gives shallow focus and nice BOKEH (two aspects where the Sigma doesn't quite sweep me off my feet)

    IMHO wide-open corner sharpness is fine for bragging rights, but usually not relevant in terms of practical usage. (I know there are scenarios where it could pertain but I never encounter them.) I usually run the range of apertures (at least until diffraction sets in) and compare corners from the best settings for landscape purposes.

    Interesting you threw in the FL55/1.2. Talk about scary sharp... :)
     
  6. quezra

    quezra TalkEmount Top Veteran

    916
    Aug 22, 2012
    Heh the 55/1.2 even 40 years later costs the same as the two brand new Sigma lenses combined, so it's really not a fair fight :) (It also weighs about the same as the two Sigmas combined :eek:) I agree on corner sharpness. I'm not a landscape photographer and that's about the only time it really has much use, otherwise corners tend not to be in my plane of focus for my kind of shooting, so I really couldn't care less. What was most interesting to me about this test is people have often said legacy lenses are softer, modern lenses today are sharper, etc. and the Sigmas are apparently raved about endlessly. Well yes, the Sigma 30 is fantastic, but only a pixel-peeping bit more than the old Canon FDn 28/2 which is hugely underrated. And yes, perhaps the FD 24/2.8 doesn't cut it anymore, but it's still not very bad. And the main reason for throwing in the 55/1.2 was to satisfy my own suspicion that good quality lenses of old are still far and away the best bang for buck, with no sharpness compromise. After this, I can guarantee you I'll be hanging on to the 55 and will probably sell my SEL 50/1.8 while it hasn't depreciated much.

    I raved about my 28 here when I first got it. I personally find its bokeh acceptable, but not much wow factor. If Canon had put out an L version of this glass I'd have bought it by now. I'm pretty sure I have some pretty bokeh pictures in my folders, will hunt for them and post them here when I can.
     
  7. quezra

    quezra TalkEmount Top Veteran

    916
    Aug 22, 2012
    Oh and I should point out that the Sigma 30 clearly outresolves the 5N sensor, and these tests will not look the same on a NEX-7, which perhaps might show up the FD28/2's limitations. But on a 16 megapixel APS-C sensor, it passed with flying colors.
     
  8. Jefenator

    Jefenator TalkEmount Top Veteran

    876
    Nov 23, 2012
    Oregon, USA
    Jeff
    I think the Sigma does just fine on the N7. This pixel view crop from the center looks almost good enough to print on my monitor. If I did print the full frame at 102dpi, it would be about 58 inches wide! :D

    sigma30center.
     
  9. Jefenator

    Jefenator TalkEmount Top Veteran

    876
    Nov 23, 2012
    Oregon, USA
    Jeff
    LOL - I find the FL55/1.2 cost less than two Sigmas (well, maybe not with the current discounts, holy cow...) and definitely weighs more. One thing it has in common with the Sigma 30mm is that it is fully NEX-7-worthy! :D

    FL55.
     
  10. quezra

    quezra TalkEmount Top Veteran

    916
    Aug 22, 2012
    Heh well the Sigmas cost the same as my minty copy which came with the BS-60 hood and box ;)

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