Sigma released bunch of new prime lenses at the beginning of december, 2020. First batch arrived in Finland on mid-february 2021 and I got change to test out quickly all new Contemporary-serie lenses; 24/3.5, 35/2 and 65/2.
Sigma states on press release that “balance between performance and size is even more crucial”. Yes that is true. As we have used to get bigger and bigger lenses from Sigma with even better image quality, especially in form of huge and heavy Art 35/1.2 now its good time to start thinking also ergonomy and weight. Released Contemporary-lenses are compact and light just weighting from 225g (24mm) to 405g (65/2). All three weights less than Art 35/1.2 ! So this is clearly is good direction.
24mm f/3.5 has interesting maximum aperture of f/3.5 with gives some bokeh. This lens is quite nice all-rounder. Minimal flare and very good image quality.Minimum focusing distance is surprisingly small; 10.8cm. Maybe some closeshots of products, plants etc. ?
35mm f/2 offers smooth bokeh, super sharp image already from max.aperture at center and very good corner perfomance. Stopping down improves corner performance slighly. 35mm is one of my favourite focal lenghts; it was very easy to get used to and shot samples. It was as good as I expected. Highly recommended!
65mm f/2 is a real odd ball. Usually I have shot portraits with 50mm and/or 85mm depending what was needed. 65mm focal length is somewhere between and made me thinking where does it fit in the line? Maybe it replaces both? Or just an addition to between 50 and 85? See the samples and judge yourself; my opinion is that its a well suited for portraits! Superb image quality, crispy sharp on center at wide open and nothing wrong on corners. Also, Highly recommended!
All lenses features a manual aperture ring and black semimatte coating giving a very high quality, utilitarian look and feel. All of three lenses performs very well. Crispy clear and sharp image even with maximum aperture. Color temperatures are very much like other primelenses from Sigma; slightly warm and natural tones. What Sigma told that these lenses are in balance between size and quality – I can totally agree. I didnt stumble into any issues during fieldtests. Autofocus is “snap-on” when shooting. All lenses have small rubbercasket at the rear-end for weatherproof.
None of the lenses have built-in image stabilizer as most the of the modern mirrorless bodies have IBIS.
Little surprising is that these are not on Art-lineup. However, they perform very much like art-serie lenses. I didnt conduct any technical testing for example distortion because of short testing period. Main focus to test out lenses in use.
Samples were taken during sunny winterday. Photos are not cropped except 1:1 detailshop from the eye to show the center sharpness. Basic corrections done, mild sharpening applied. Camerabodies used Sony A7rIII and A7RIV. No filters.
Most of the samples here were shot wide-open, as most of the users are interested how they perform.
Modeling by Katri Pälve. IG: @katripalve
Sigmaphoto press release and technical specifications