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Sigma 85 F1.4 Preview

Jared Polin November 20, 2010 34

Sigma is a Lens company that makes quality affordable glass for Nikon, Canon, Sony, Pentax and other camera mounts. Sigma is a nice alternative for beginners to get into the fast lens game without breaking the bank. That brings us to todays unboxing from Allen’s Camera. Allen just got into stock the Sigma 85 F1.4 Lens which sells for $899.99

I am hearing some amazing things about this piece of glass. It is a nice alternative to the Nikon 85 1.4 afs which sells for almost twice as much as the sigma. The sigma is built well, feels nice in the hands and does create some very nice images.

Sigma and Nikon will be sending me an 85 1.4 to test out and I will do a side by side comparison test of both lenses. Until than I have included full res sample images taken with the Sigma and Nikon D3s, tweaked and exported from Lightroom 3. Please click the images below to view the full res images on flickr.

If you are interested in this lens please call Allen’s Camera 215.547.2841 or you can purchase at B and H or Amazon.



  1. Matthias Rhomberg November 20, 2010 at 9:57 am -

    I’m really looking forward to your comparison of the two lenses. I’d love to own the nikon, but it’s just a bit too expensive for what it is, I guess. Let’s see! :)

  2. guunther1 November 20, 2010 at 10:34 am -

    Gives me goosebumps everytime, looking at beautiful optics like that

  3. Avi November 20, 2010 at 10:40 am -

    Are the colors nearly as good as the Nikon?

  4. Darren November 20, 2010 at 10:44 am -

    What were the 2 hoods for? Did you find out?

  5. Jared Polin November 20, 2010 at 10:45 am -

    I didnt find out what those two hoods are for yet, i will for the full review.

  6. Johannes November 20, 2010 at 11:09 am -

    Damn it looks very nice!

  7. Jackson Vandewouw November 20, 2010 at 11:18 am -

    On the full res samples it looks like it gets both green and magenta colour fringing, but thats when it’s the original size.
    Looks real nice though, it really blows out the background

  8. Bill November 20, 2010 at 11:18 am -

    “The infamous 0-Gravity T2i”

  9. Larry November 20, 2010 at 11:28 am -

    The two hoods are supposed to be screwed together when using cropped sensors. The smaller hood is actually an extension not an extra hood.

  10. Jeni November 20, 2010 at 11:40 am -

    I found this about the lens hood…

    “The Sigma comes with a unique 2-part lens hood to help avoid hood vignetting on full-frame cameras. There is a middle section that you leave off if you are using a full-frame camera, but then add back on if you have a crop camera.”

  11. andré (portugal) November 20, 2010 at 11:48 am -

    gona keep whatching to see a full video review, appearantly is a extension hood. The second piece is for DX cameras.

  12. aruiz November 20, 2010 at 12:11 pm -

    looks like a nice piece of quality glass on the budget.

  13. William November 20, 2010 at 12:27 pm -

    Nice bokeh

  14. Eli November 20, 2010 at 1:08 pm -

    The “Second Hood” is an extender for the hood. You attach one to the lens, and then the other to the first!! REALLY USELESS!!!

  15. mhmmd November 20, 2010 at 1:26 pm -

    so… does this beautiful work on d3100 ?

  16. shayne weltmer November 20, 2010 at 1:32 pm -


  17. mhmmd November 20, 2010 at 1:37 pm -

    I’ll tell you why there are two hoods:
    for DX format, the sensor will not use the whole glass area, but typically 85-90% of the area( that’s why they call it crop mode). Therefore, a larger hood can be used to protect the sensor from detecting unwanted intense light sources ( eg. Sun). On the other hand, the smaller hood will be used when u r shooting in full frame, because the sensor will be using the whole glass area.
    Q: what if i used the dx hood while shooting fx?
    A: you’ll find that the edges will be cut and the picture will be blurred

  18. Emil November 20, 2010 at 2:10 pm -

    That glass looks sweet! and so do the pics that came from it, what camera did you use to take the pictures with?

  19. Peter Dudek aka Wishmaster November 20, 2010 at 3:19 pm -

    Ther is couple opf reviews of this lens on youtube I had seen and it looks that this Sigma rocks if you can’t get money for Nikon lens. Usually third party lenses are cheaper but as good as nikon or canon however, is not the image quality I be worried about but the FF or BF and how does it performs in the studio enviroment. This Sigma is sharp as my broken glass HSM is faaaaaaast and fels excellent in my hand, but I am not so lucky to get one from this company for test lol :P. Good luck and try to test this out not only to get the image comparation but focusing and low inddor light ok?? Be good FrO!

  20. Brian November 20, 2010 at 4:53 pm -

    Sigma calls the extra hood a “hood adapter” for aps-c sensors. I’m guessing that it acts as a hood extension. Seems like it should work, but who would want to mess with a two piece hood for a small lens like this? Looking forward to the full review!!!

  21. Peter Dudek aka Wishmaster November 20, 2010 at 7:25 pm -

    Yes this is a hood adapter (extension) for APS-C sensor. The lens it self is not that small and it’s heavy lol :P.

  22. ImageX November 21, 2010 at 12:12 am -

    I have a very nice lens collection going and the only thing on my want list that I’m missing is a 85mm 1.4 and a fisheye. The Sigma could be an option. Looks promising.

    Hey, Jared, have you seen the Samyang 85 1.4 yet? They are suppose to be pretty good for the money. No AF though. It would be cool if you could get your hands on one and do some testing.

  23. Peter Dudek aka Wishmaster November 21, 2010 at 7:37 am -

    Samyang is very good lens aka FALCON as well in some countries. If you not doing any fast moving objects than 85mm 1.4 Samyang is excellent choice. However, this lens have soft cornes on FX cameras sigma is sharp edge to edge on FX and DX, when shooting to direct light you can have some artifacts and they ar quite big (FX handle this better) as well as when stoping down it looses his sharpnes above f11 is pretty unsharp regarding to prime lens capabilities like Nikon or Canon. This Sigma will be very good 3rd party lens to choose from if focusing would be working alright. Sigma has some chromaticaberation but nothing to worried about :].

  24. Brian November 21, 2010 at 11:24 am -

    @ Peter – I just meant that this lens is small for a two-piece hood compared to the only other lens I know of that has one, the 400mm 2.8!

  25. Tristan November 21, 2010 at 2:02 pm -

    This to me makes no sense. You can pick up a used 85mm AF-D nikkor F1.4 for about 800 -1000$. And then you can sell it, whenever you like, for pretty much what you paid for it. If you buy the SIgma, it’s value declines by hundreds of dollars the moment you pay for it. I can only conclude that the way you push new Sigma glass over used nikon glass that you are letting your interest in Allen’s camera superseed your best judgement on value for money.

  26. Jared Polin November 21, 2010 at 2:13 pm -

    @tristan i have no interest in Allen’s Camera. I pointed out that you can still pick up the Nikon 85 AF-D for about the same price and would have to do tests to see which is better to determine what you would do.

  27. mhmmd November 21, 2010 at 3:43 pm -

    jared .. why aren’t you answering our questions on skype ?

  28. Alex November 21, 2010 at 3:56 pm -

    @TRistan I don’t think Sigma lenses depreciate in value that much. At least not if you buy them used to start with. I have a Sigma 30mm f1.4 which I bought for $350 and I see them selling on POTN for $375. If it’s a quality prime lenses, like this 85mm, I’m sure the value can’t depreciate all that much

  29. nick a November 22, 2010 at 5:40 am -

    jared, are you planning to compare this to the AF-D or the AF-S?

    • Jared Polin November 23, 2010 at 8:57 am -

      Yes I am planing on it.

  30. Peter Dudek aka Wishmaster November 22, 2010 at 7:28 am -

    @mhmmd… lots of peaople been there the man is bussy that’s why :P.

  31. Peter Dudek aka Wishmaster November 22, 2010 at 7:28 am -

    @Brian, that’s no worries I didn’t try to be mean or somenthing :], you are good man :].

  32. Peter Dudek aka Wishmaster November 22, 2010 at 7:34 am -

    @Tristian, this is why you not buying Sigma lenses when they just out! wait and pick them up for less price and sell them for about as much :]. Nikon is expensive and you right they will sell for about as much as you bought them, but Sigma is newer technology, new glass, new coating (they say that) and improved to be better. They learn from 50mm 1.4 and put this new stuff to new 85mm 1.4. Generally Nikon is good but sigma can be on the same level or maybe even better.

  33. Jim I. January 12, 2011 at 12:14 am -

    Hi Jared… love your reviews. I am tossing between the Nikon 85mm 1.4G, and the Sigma 85mm 1.4. I have tried Sigma in the pat and was not impressed. However, I hear some really good things about this new lens and would love to have you compare the Nikon and Sigma to help me make a decision.