My big Dilemma, keep Sigma 35 after buying Nikon 18-35g?

Started Jan 15, 2014 | Discussions thread
anotherMike Veteran Member • Posts: 8,950
Re: My big Dilemma, keep Sigma 35 after buying Nikon 18-35g?

You didn't specify what method you used to achieve focus, and in addition, your decision to focus on the clock makes analysis of the image rather difficult because of field curvature differences between both lenses. You also have picked a fairly close subject distance that isn't representative of the lenses performance across various distance ranges.

I have both lenses - at some point I'll write up a post about some lenses I've run through my evaluations recently, but for this discussion, I recently ran a series of 4 tests, properly done, properly focused with live view, on 4 different scenes with varying subject differences, between the Sigma 35/1.4, the Nikon 18-35G, the Nikon 35/2 AIS manual focus, and the Nikon 24-70/2.8G zoom. While any of these lenses was pretty decent in the center of the frame, once you get into the moderate and definitely moderate to far and infinity subject distances, the 18-35 tested the worst of the lot due to edge/corner performance. I haven't tested the corners/edges of the 18-35 at the close distances as I normally don't shoot 35mm at those distances. However, in all cases I did note field curvature of the "near corner" favoring kind that may possibly skew your interpretation of corner performance. It's better to try and find a test target where the corners/edges are not near corners and not "behind the subject" corners either, while being a bit further away. Lens performance, particularly amongst wide angles, tends to vary dependent on subject distance and can be definitely influenced by field curvature.

This doesn't mean I don't like the 18-35 as I do. I bought it as a "I occasionally need something wider than 21mm" lens since selling my 14-24 (I own other lenses that cover the 21 and up range quite well) - and I really like the 18-35 in that 18-24mm range, but at 35mm I can't say I'll ever use it there - at anything from moderate to far distances, the corner/edge performance wasn't where I like it at all.

Go shoot a planar subject at a distance further away, properly focused, and I bet you won't be so happy with the corners and edges...

Thus I can't recommend selling the Sigma at all in this case.


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