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Thread: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

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    Smile Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Just got the lens and I am trying to check its suitability for my use on the NEX-7.

    A few words on the lens: Very nice exterior! The focus grip is far better than any of Sony's primes. Quite compact and makes a nice fit. The mount is a little too snug. This might change once used a few times. There is a very noticeable rattle while handling the lens- as if something is shifting back and forth inside. There is some noise while it auto focuses too. Not very objectionable for still, have not checked how that would be while videoing. Given that this is the cheapest E prime thus far and comes with a 3 year warranty from Sigma, no worries at all.


    Since Sigma has a bold claim that this lens does not need a hood due to its construction and the coatings, I had to check if that is true.

    @f/16


    Untitled by Vivek Iyer, on Flickr


    Untitled by Vivek Iyer, on Flickr

    Out of focus rendering isn't too bad.

    @f/2.8


    Untitled by Vivek Iyer, on Flickr



    It is quite sharp for the NEX-7 and Sigma's claims about this being a telecentric design, isn't disappointing. Finally, I have a very decent normal lens (for the NEX-7).


    Untitled by Vivek Iyer, on Flickr


    Untitled by Vivek Iyer, on Flickr
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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    I'd probably buy a Sigma 20/2.8 based on these results, which are more than acceptable given the low cost of the lens. I look forward to seeing more pictures made with this lens.

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Jonathon, 30mm. I will post more as and when I take more.

    There are couple of more things about this lens:

    1. The focus train (or range since it is IF) has a long range but the minimum focus is only 30cm. On manual mode I can focus well past infinity. Wish Sigma had shortened that and made the close focus even closer.

    2. CA is much better controlled on this than the other E primes. It isn't devoid of CA (not unexpected due to the internal focus construction). The unit focusing CZJ Dokumar 35/2.8 (originally a high end copy lens) is devoid of CA, in comparison. The slower maximum aperture could be helping this cause but the Sony Zeiss E-Sonnar 24/1.8 and the Sony E 50/1.8 (to a lesser extent) have quite a bit of axial and lateral CA. The color rendition is quite neutral.

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    Senior Member Taylor Sherman's Avatar
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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Thanks for posting Vivek. Any chance you'll get your hands on the 19mm any time soon? If it turns out to be high-quality (and has no corner issues on the 7) then it could save me a fair chunk of money

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Looking good, especially for the price. Thanks for the samples!

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    How's the AF speed, nice color.
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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    A Leitz Elpro VIb suits the 30mm and the closest focus is about 10cm.


    Untitled by Vivek Iyer, on Flickr
    NEX-7, Sigma 30mm f/2.8 DN, Elpro VIb (not directly attached, pressed to the lens), f/5, 2.5s

    These two were manually focused (hand held shots!).


    Untitled by Vivek Iyer, on Flickr
    NEX-7, Sigma 30mm f/2.8 DN, f/5.6, 1/20s


    Untitled by Vivek Iyer, on Flickr
    NEX-7, Sigma 30mm f/2.8 DN, f/4.5, 1/25s

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Looks like a nice lens, although not a Zeiss 24mm, the quality seems decent and it's much smaller and cheaper. Looks like a "no brainer" to me. I'm going to get one soon.

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Quote Originally Posted by Taylor Sherman View Post
    Thanks for posting Vivek. Any chance you'll get your hands on the 19mm any time soon? If it turns out to be high-quality (and has no corner issues on the 7) then it could save me a fair chunk of money
    Taylor, The lens isn't even listed as available anywhere. Sigma site indicates the price would be the same as the 30/2.8 DN (189Euros). I was not interested in that lens at all. However, I am really impressed with the build quality of the lens (30mm). Optical quality is also impressive. No idea if I would be able to buy one soon though.

    Quote Originally Posted by madmaxmedia View Post
    Looking good, especially for the price. Thanks for the samples!
    Cheers, Steve!

    Quote Originally Posted by FlypenFly View Post
    How's the AF speed, nice color.
    They all (ie., the 24/1.8, 50/1.8 and this 30/2.8) appear about the same to me. Sorry, I really can not tell.

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    Senior Subscriber Member Mike Hatam's Avatar
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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Vivek,

    Thanks for this report - extremely useful for us NEX-7 owners!

    Would you mind posting a quick snap of the lens mounted on the NEX-7, so we can see the size?

    Mike
    Mike Hatam
    Sony A99, RX1, RX100

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Hi Mike,

    Here they are:



    The E 50/1.8 (covered in mat black vinyl is on the right)



    The one on the left is CJ Dokumar 35/2.8 in a focus helicoid, HVL-F20AM with a external diffuser, 24/1.8 and 50/1.8 flanking the mounted lens.





    Even the rear baffle is better built (in my view) than the Sony/Zeiss E primes.
    (Sorry about the hot spot/flare. Those come from the filter on the taking lens)



    Sigma 30/1.4 mounted on a Nikon D300 vs Sigma 30/2.8 DN on the NEX-7 with the HVL-F20AM flash.

    Self portrait of the gear:


    Untitled by Vivek Iyer, on Flickr

    (On the camera side, something is missing for my palm. Looking forward to that Gariz case and hoping that it will fill that void.)
    Last edited by Vivek; 24th March 2012 at 06:38. Reason: Added an image

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    Senior Subscriber Member Mike Hatam's Avatar
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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Thanks Vivek.

    It's certainly a nice compact lens that would fit easily into my small travel bag. I'm going to have to give it a try.

    I like the size of the HVL-F20AM flash on the NEX-7 in your photos.

    The black vinyl on your 50 - is that black electricians tape or some other type of vinyl tape? Does it leave any residue if/when removed?
    Mike Hatam
    Sony A99, RX1, RX100

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Mike, That is a HEXIS super matte black vinyl wrap (made by 3M for wrapping cars). Very thin and covers that shiny plastic lens well. No worries like the electrician tapes. It is so good (optically) I use it as a baffle material as well.

    That HVL20 Flash is a superb match for the NEX-7. Works very well indoors.

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Hi Vivek,
    thanks for the report. I had my eye on the Sigma's from the day they were announced. Seems like a no brainer at € 184...

    Regarding the HVL-F20AM with an external diffuser, you made the diffuser yourself, I guess? Of what material?

    As for seeing your images of my beloved hometown, I enjoy them very much, as always, keep 'm comin'

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Hi Peter, Thanks. Fantastic city to live in and glad to be a resident here. The diffuser was bought through eBay. Only one vendor sells it.

    In my attempts to check for flare, after 3 days, I did find it. Against the Sun and the Sun is outside the frame. Still the contrast isn't drastically affected.


    Untitled by Vivek Iyer, on Flickr

    NEX-7, Sigma 30mm f/2.8 DN, f/3.2.

    I think, I will now use a 46 ->37mm step ring as the "hood" all the time. That seems to be effective.

    I might add this one for sharpness example (almost all of the samples but for one posted here were handheld snaps!). The focus and exposure were spot on and this is the result.


    Untitled by Vivek Iyer, on Flickr
    NEX-7, Sigma 30mm f/2.8 DN, f/3.2

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Thanks, it seems this lens is able to render a nice 3D 'pop' when focused at moderately close distances, the lady's blue shirt helps of course but I see it in the gentleman's raincoat as well.

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN


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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Quote Originally Posted by peterv View Post
    Thanks, it seems this lens is able to render a nice 3D 'pop' when focused at moderately close distances, the lady's blue shirt helps of course but I see it in the gentleman's raincoat as well.
    It is even possible at longer distance and under flat lighting with this lens. Of course, closer distances and directional lighting would help as with many other lenses.


    Untitled by Vivek Iyer, on Flickr
    NEX-7, Sigma 30mm f/2.8, f/3.2
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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Cool, looks pretty good. This bodes well for the 19mm, which I may be interested in.

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Quote Originally Posted by peterv View Post
    Jerome's 19/2.8 photos are up on Flickr, now.
    Sigma 19mm f/2.8 on the NEX-7 - a set on Flickr

    I guess the corner sharpness is OK, but alot of lateral CA... The 30/2.8 seems to be a better performer.
    www.JimBuchananSpace.com
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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Quote Originally Posted by douglasf13 View Post
    Cool, looks pretty good. This bodes well for the 19mm, which I may be interested in.
    I never had much interest in either of these. The need for a "normal" prime drove me to the 30mm DN. Just my luck. Fabulous performer all around.

    If Jim's link is the typical of the way the 19mm is going to be, that is not for me.

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Quote Originally Posted by JimBuchanan View Post
    I guess the corner sharpness is OK, but alot of lateral CA... The 30/2.8 seems to be a better performer.
    First impression from these images, I agee.

    Quote Originally Posted by Vivek View Post
    If Jim's link is the typical of the way the 19mm is going to be, that is not for me.
    Why not? CA? sharpness? Rendering/character?

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    What the 30mm going for it are:

    1. The size/build quality.

    2. Flare resistance.

    3. Minimal CA.

    4. Sharpness (by f/5.6 it is as sharp as it can be).

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    I've been interested in the 19mm, since there aren't a lot of smallish wides out there for NEX, but I'm not encouraged by those samples.

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    This was made using the reversed lens (aperture was set in the camera, lens dismounted and reversed). ~1X magnification.


    NEX-7, Sigma 30/2.8 DN (reversed), f/10.

    Gear: NEX-7, NEX to 49mm adapter, 49mm to 46mm step ring, lens.

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    They're available here. Ordered them both from Amazon, yesterday. Looks like fun and the price is right.

    Cheers, Matt

    Zenfolio | Matt Driscoll

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    This was diffused window light with lens wide open.



    NEX-7, Sigma 30mm f/2.8 DN, f/2.8, 1/80s, ISO 100

    I must say that the Gariz half case made the gripping way better and it shows.

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Thanks for the writeup Vivek.

    How does the focusing work on this lens? Is it a pure focus by wire, or more like the sigma HSM lenses where focusing manually moves a helical? If it is focus by wire, is it better than the sony implementation?

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Pleasure to me of help, Nicholas.

    It is focus by wire. One can use it in MF or DMF modes (by changing the settings in the camera) and the focus grip is (to me) is much better than those of the Sony E primes.

    It is internal focus and the length of the lens remains the same throughout its focal range.

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Performance looks very good, and the size and appearance are also appealing. My only problem with Sigma primes on DSLRs in the past was that autofocus accuracy/precision was less than ideal. The glass was always very good. With CDAF, I suppose that the AF issues which have plagued some Sigma lenses (like the Sigma 30/1.4) will be a non-issue.

    Thanks for sharing this, Vivek. Looks like a great buy. I'll probably get the 19mm f/2.8 lens for Micro Four Thirds if it's up to the standard of what you've shown here for the 30.

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Quote Originally Posted by Amin View Post
    Thanks for sharing this, Vivek. Looks like a great buy. I'll probably get the 19mm f/2.8 lens for Micro Four Thirds if it's up to the standard of what you've shown here for the 30.
    Amin....why would you do that when there is the 20/1.7? Less noisy for video?

    R

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Thanks Vivek; I pre-ordered one of these from B&H; looks like an excellent normal.

    I am using the MS Perar 35/3.5 on a Hawk's adapter in the meantime, on a NEX 5N. manual focus, but the focus aids make getting accurate focus easy (assuming a relatively static target!). Do I recognise that flash? Cheers, KL

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Amin, Let us know (m4/3rds thread) how the 19/2.8 fares. I am sure it will be even better on the smaller sensor.

    Kit, Thanks. Yes, the familiar flash!

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Vivek, you've convinced me! I have one inbound, I expect the kit lens won't get much use after it's here.
    ---
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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Me too. I've got both Sigmas on their way, as well as the 50/1.8 OSS. I guess I should give this AF thing a try, after all.

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Quote Originally Posted by douglasf13 View Post
    Me too. I've got both Sigmas on their way, as well as the 50/1.8 OSS. I guess I should give this AF thing a try, after all.
    +1

    Vivek, the seed you planted seems to be flourishing. The Sigma 19/2.8 and 30/2.8 lenses aren't yet shipping in Australia but I was able to preorder both when I picked up my Sony 50/1.8 earlier in the week.

    I've settled on the 35mm and 75mm (EFoV) as my preferred focal lengths so the 50/1.8 and the Zeiss 24/1.8 combo adds AF to the MF lenses that I (like Douglas) normally prefer. But the small size and cost of the Sigma lenses were impossible to resist.

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Quote Originally Posted by Jonathon Delacour View Post
    +1

    Vivek, the seed you planted seems to be flourishing. The Sigma 19/2.8 and 30/2.8 lenses aren't yet shipping in Australia but I was able to preorder both when I picked up my Sony 50/1.8 earlier in the week.

    I've settled on the 35mm and 75mm (EFoV) as my preferred focal lengths so the 50/1.8 and the Zeiss 24/1.8 combo adds AF to the MF lenses that I (like Douglas) normally prefer. But the small size and cost of the Sigma lenses were impossible to resist.
    This is my quandary, too. My normal lens kit for my (film) Leica is a 35 and a 75 and I work very well with this combination. However, the Zeiss 24 is financially out of reach for me right now; I'm compensating by purchasing adapters that allow me to try my Zuiko 24/2.8 and 50/1.8 and my Nikkor 24/2.8 and 50/1.2 on the NEX. The adapters should be here by the weekend so I can test my idea.

    However, back before I got back into Leicas I used to frequently carry just a meterless Nikon F2 with a 45/2.8GN. I never felt constrained with using just this single lens for casual walking around; this is why I ordered a Sigma 30.
    ---
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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Yeah, although I do wish the Sigma 30 was f2, I think the 19, 30 and Sony 50 seems like a no-brainer AF combo for only $700 total...especially when I consider the cost of just one of my rangefinder lenses. I'll likely be carrying the 30 on its own much of the time.

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    I think the f/2 is the magic mark, unfortunately. Once people start using the 30/2.8, I am positive that will be forgotten quickly. Mine is almost always on the 7.

    For the first time (comparing all the other E primes), I see onion rings in the OOF highlights through this lens.

    This is indicative of molded glass aspheric lenses used in the lens.

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Yeah, I'm usually fine with f2.8, although I do use f2 a lot indoors. Why Sony can't build their own version of the Samsung NX 30/2 is beyond me, but the Sigma should be fine for me, most of the time.

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Quote Originally Posted by douglasf13 View Post
    Me too. I've got both Sigmas on their way, as well as the 50/1.8 OSS. I guess I should give this AF thing a try, after all.
    I tried to go that route many times (using the kitlens more, using the Tamron 18-200 or the Sony 18_200) and my last try was the Sigma 30mm.

    I have to admit: The lens is sharp and has good edges! It is small, black and lightweight.

    But the thing with AF on the Nex is.... It just plain s****s.
    It is too slow for anything moving and hunts every now and then. Close up work (not really macro) doesnt work well because of the hunting too.

    So every time I tried the AF thing on the Nex I went back to my precious Contax G lenses and other manuell focus lenses.

    If you use MF lenses often, your focus speed will match the AF on the Nex for sure.
    So for me AF-lenses are a no-go on the current Nex line up.

    If the AF improves with new Cameras I will surely check the lenses out again.

    Greets!

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Quote Originally Posted by douglasf13 View Post
    Yeah, I'm usually fine with f2.8, although I do use f2 a lot indoors. Why Sony can't build their own version of the Samsung NX 30/2 is beyond me, but the Sigma should be fine for me, most of the time.
    I have had that lens with the NX10. If there is a 30/2 with that lens design, I would avoid it. I need not elaborate on that.

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Interesting. I'd heard mostly good things about the 30/2.

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Quote Originally Posted by fotoingo View Post
    I tried to go that route many times (using the kitlens more, using the Tamron 18-200 or the Sony 18_200) and my last try was the Sigma 30mm.

    I have to admit: The lens is sharp and has good edges! It is small, black and lightweight.

    But the thing with AF on the Nex is.... It just plain s****s.
    It is too slow for anything moving and hunts every now and then. Close up work (not really macro) doesnt work well because of the hunting too.

    So every time I tried the AF thing on the Nex I went back to my precious Contax G lenses and other manuell focus lenses.

    If you use MF lenses often, your focus speed will match the AF on the Nex for sure.
    So for me AF-lenses are a no-go on the current Nex line up.

    If the AF improves with new Cameras I will surely check the lenses out again.

    Greets!
    I've been playing around with the kit zoom's AF the last day or two, and my feeling is that the best route will be leaving the camera in MF mode and using the Nex-7's rear AF/MF button to AF. That way, I can still MF easily, if need be, and AF is decoupled from the shutter button. We'll see how that goes.

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Quote Originally Posted by douglasf13 View Post
    I've been playing around with the kit zoom's AF the last day or two, and my feeling is that the best route will be leaving the camera in MF mode and using the Nex-7's rear AF/MF button to AF. That way, I can still MF easily, if need be, and AF is decoupled from the shutter button. We'll see how that goes.
    This is how I set up my NEX-7, too - it's how I've been running my Nikon DSLRs for years, and I much prefer decoupling AF from the shutter button. I'm playing with both single AF point and multipoint on the NEX-7, I'm not sure yet which I prefer for a default setting.
    ---
    Ken

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Quote Originally Posted by HeavyDuty View Post
    This is how I set up my NEX-7, too - it's how I've been running my Nikon DSLRs for years, and I much prefer decoupling AF from the shutter button. I'm playing with both single AF point and multipoint on the NEX-7, I'm not sure yet which I prefer for a default setting.
    Yeah, that's how I shot my A900, too. I forgot to mention that I'm using flexible spot AF spot with the spot in the center of the frame.

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Quote Originally Posted by douglasf13 View Post
    Interesting. I'd heard mostly good things about the 30/2.
    It seems it is easy mold plastic in the 5/5 design. It may be good for the Nokia pureview but will not do for an APS-C sensor.

    Oh yeah, lots of good things written about that lens and even the NX cams.

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    The OOF specular highlights show ring pattern (this is a crop of the original) due to the molded glass aspheric surfaces on the lens elements.


    Untitled by Vivek Iyer, on Flickr

    NEX-7, Sigma 30mm f/2.8 DN, f/3.2

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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Looks good, Vivek. I just don't think it is a focal length I would use very much.

    Quentin
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    Re: Sigma 30mm f2.8 DN

    Quentin, I tried a few WA converters- the 0.75X Ricoh GW1 and a 0.65 Century Optics (both 37mm threads).

    The Ricoh GW1 is the better of the two but the corners go mushy regardless of the aperture.

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