Sigma Trinity: First the 16, now the 56. Do I need the 30? Nah.

bargainguy

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A little while back, I picked up the Sigma 16/1.4 and posted a few pix here. I was so impressed with the 16 that I ordered the 56/1.4 Sigma.

The 56 arrived today, and it is a lovely lens. More jewel-like than the 16, maybe half the size. Balances nicely on both my GX85 (shown below) and my E-M1. Sample pic at f/1.4 on the GX85 below.

So that got me thinking: Do I need the last lens in this Sigma trinity set, the 30/1.4?

Not when I already have the PL25 and O25 Pro! Really, other than the bump in focal length, I would be way overstocked there. Size comparison of all four lenses below. L-R: 56, PL25, O25, 16.

I can see bringing either 25 as a substitute for the 30/1.4. The PL when I need more portability, the Pro when I need the extra speed and slightly better corners wide open.

One tiny niggle with these lenses: You can't turn the lens in the camera mount by grabbing the focusing ring, as it's fly-by-wire and not physically connected. You have to grab inward of the focus ring toward the lens mount or near the filter ring. I don't always remember that until I see the lens spinning and not getting anywhere.

Small price to pay for both the 16 and 56's outstanding performance, though. I can see making my own trinity with the 16 & 56, and either 25. That would cover 90% of my shooting needs, with my 7-14/4 Panny for super WA or something longer than 56 if I needed it.

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If you didn’t already have the two 25s it would be a no brainer. With them, it’s a little more complex.

What you would get with the 30 is slightly faster, longer and a little bigger than the PL 25. Longer with equal background separation and lighter than the 25Pro.

With the 30 you would get a matched set of lenses that behave similarly, and render similarly. If you do video, that could be important.

Personally, I would love to have the three. I think they would fit my type of shooting very well. Currently I can’t justify it having the Panny 14 and Oly 60. Although that 56 is on my list of lenses to consider next.
 

bargainguy

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Yeah, not shooting video, so don't need the matched set for that.

What matters most to me: corner resolution at full aperture, smooth bokeh, overall flare resistance and good infrared performance (no hotspots, flare or contrast loss). Lack of geometric distortion is also nice, as I do a fair amount of shooting in urban settings and prefer to avoid corrections in post.
 
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I can't comment on corner resolution wide open. I tend to not shoot lenses wide open very often. The 30 does have nice smooth bokeh.



As for flare: I think it is somewhat resistant to flare, but when conditions are right, the flare is pretty big and red/pink in hue.

If I am shooting architecture, I think 30mm is a bit too narrow, so I can't comment on distortion much. I don't feel like I have ever had an issue with the 30. I have had that issue with my Panny 14, though.
 

speedy

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I couldn't resist a Black Friday sale, & picked up the Sigma 30. $367.00 Au, or $250 US. How could you go wrong for that? Just turned up tonight, only shot a couple of test shots with it, they look excellent. I also have the PL 25, which is one of my favorites, the Siggy might be a touch sharper at f/1.4. AF is fast, accurate & quiet, no complaints there.
It should pair beautifully with my PL15 & Siggy 56. A lovely trio. I bought it for the slightly tighter framing over my 25, & its a bit further away from the 15, plus a bit closer to the 56. I can see a long & happy relationship in the making :)
 

MichailK

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@speedy
Oly or Pany bodies? I have noticed quite some CA (really extravagant on street lamps light spots in the distance at night) with the 30/1.4 at 1.4 on my former E-PL5 and I wonder if it is the known color fringing related to sensor filters of Oly vs Pany bodies or lens related only. Could you please do some PL25 vs 30/1.4 comparison on this issue for me?
That is shoot both lenses wide open at night with lamp posts in the distance.
 

agentlossing

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That 56mm is of a tempting size for sure. however I sold my 60mm f2.8 after just not finding enough use for it. Anything around ~100mm equiv and up is just way too tight for my shooting. I have been pondering the 30mm however. I owned the f2.8 version at one time and found it unwieldy as a walkaround lens, but since I have the 20mm f1.7, having a 30mm f1.4 as a short tele might be a nice option. That would make my trinity 28mm equiv (in the form of the Ricoh GR), 40mm equiv and 60mm equiv. Sounds tempting!
 

speedy

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@speedy
Oly or Pany bodies? I have noticed quite some CA (really extravagant on street lamps light spots in the distance at night) with the 30/1.4 at 1.4 on my former E-PL5 and I wonder if it is the known color fringing related to sensor filters of Oly vs Pany bodies or lens related only. Could you please do some PL25 vs 30/1.4 comparison on this issue for me?
That is shoot both lenses wide open at night with lamp posts in the distance.
Panasonic. G9. Yeah, it does show a little bit of CA here and there. Only taken a dozen shots with it, so can't make any definitive statements.
Honestly, if you're going to eliminate lenses because of a little bit of CA, then you're seriously missing out on some very good lenses. My PL 25, PL 15, Lumix 42.5, Lumix 14 all show it in various degrees. And it's mostly very very easy to correct. Half the time I don't even bother. Yeah, everyone's different though.
 
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speedy

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@speedy
Oly or Pany bodies? I have noticed quite some CA (really extravagant on street lamps light spots in the distance at night) with the 30/1.4 at 1.4 on my former E-PL5 and I wonder if it is the known color fringing related to sensor filters of Oly vs Pany bodies or lens related only. Could you please do some PL25 vs 30/1.4 comparison on this issue for me?
That is shoot both lenses wide open at night with lamp posts in the distance.
I took a few PL25 vs Sigma 30 test shots, & the PL25 is a little bit sharper out near the edges of the frame. Not massive, but it is there. The Sigma shows more CA too. If I had to choose 1 between them, I'd spend the bit extra and get the PL25. If you really want to see the test shots, I'll post some up, but they're pretty boring so consequently takes me a bit of time to get enthused enough to upload them.
 

speedy

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@speedy
Thanks!
(no need for extra time on this, thanx again!)
Okay -to satisfy my own curiosity, I actually got out and tried both lenses back to back today. In real world situations. Between f/1.6 & f/2. I can post a couple of samples up if you like. How many pixels wide would you be interested in seeing for comparison? Or full rez?
 
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