Sigma is once again proving that even smaller lens companies can innovate.
[Update]: This lens is listed at $1000, and is shipping right now.
Adding to their impressive lineup of zooms and primes, they've announced the 24-35mm f/2 DG HSM Art lens, the very first zoom capable of covering full-frame sensors and maintaining a constant f/2 aperture. This zoom is the newest in their Art series of lenses, which aim to give tremendous performance at affordable prices. Though they've already got a full-frame lens in the Art series that covers this range (the 24-105mm), that lens is an f/4 throughout — a full two stops slower. It's certainly nothing to scoff at, but it does put the speed of the 24-35mm into perspective. Essentially, Sigma has set out to create a zoom that can replace primes in the 24 to 35mm range, with image quality that's just as good and an aperture that's nearly as fast.
Here are the specs:
- Focal Length: 24 - 35mm (Comparable 35mm Equivalent on APS-C Format Focal Length: 38.4 - 56 mm)
- Aperture: f/2-f/16
- Mounts: Canon, Nikon, Sigma
- Angle of View: 84.1° 63.4'
- Minimum Focus Distance: 11" (27.94 cm)
- Maximum Reproduction Ratio: 1:4.4
- Elements/Groups: 18/13
- Diaphragm Blades: 9, Rounded
- Image Stabilization: No
- Autofocus: Yes
- Tripod Collar: No
- Filter Thread: 82 mm
- Dimensions: 3.4 x 4.8" (8.64 x 12.19 cm)
- Weight: 2.075 lbs. (941 g)
- Availability: July 2015
- Price: TBA
Though image stabilization would have been nice, it's less important in this focal length range, and I'm sure it would have added to the complexity (and likely the price). One great feature the lens does have is internal focusing (with instant manual override), so the front filter thread does not rotate. Specs are certainly one thing, but image quality is really where it matters. Sigma already has a beautiful and sharp zoom in this range, the 18-35mm f/1.8, but it's limited to Super 35mm/APS-C sensors, whereas the 24-35mm can cover full-frame. If you shoot a lot of video with full-frame cameras like the Canon 5D Mark III, Nikon D810, or Sony a7S (and the new Sony a7R II when that's released), this one is certainly looking interesting, especially if it's just as good or better than the 24mm and 35mm f/1.4 Art lenses.
There are plenty of lenses that cover this range, but most are a bit slower at f/2.8 or f/4. That's really the big advantage for this one, combined with the relatively light weight. This could be a great lens for gimbal or drone work, as it enables you to get the most out of a full-frame sensor while still being able to adjust focal length a bit.
We don't know the price yet, but I'm expecting it to be in the same range as the more expensive Art full-frame and APS-C lenses (which are around $800-$900). It should be available sometime in July, and will have versions in Canon, Nikon, and Sigma mounts.