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Sigma 40mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art First Look

See my Sigma DG HSM Art wishlist.

I wont’t be able to post much from the field this trip—just too short a time. Full coverage will have to wait until I return home. Shooting in snow is hard to do for many reasons, but mainly access/slogging.

The Sigma 40mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art is a spectacularly good lens—the best yet from Sigma, impressive by just about any standard. I rank it up there with Zeiss Otus lenses overall and yet it falls grievously short in one key area: pronounced (stunningly unexpected!) focus shift (flare resistance is also a concern).

Add in troublesome front-focusing errors on the Nikon D850, and the Sigma 40mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art is a sort of idiot-savant lens in that front-focus errors tend to cancel out focus shift by f/2.8 or so, so that sorts itself out, which is good or hundreds of shots would have been junk. Problem is, using Fine Focus Adjust to cancel out focus errors for f/1.4 and f/2 screws up stopped down performance because the focus shift no longer cancels-out the AF error <gah!!!!!>run screaming into creek to wake from bad dream</gah!!!!!>.

f7.1 @ 1/20 sec, ISO 31; 2018-12-17 13:03:27
NIKON D850 + Sigma 40mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
ENV: Lundy Canyon aspen campground, altitude 7200 ft / 2195 m, 38°F / 3°C

[low-res image for bot]

Correction for secondary color is among the best I have ever seen wide open at f/1.4, though the image below is stopped down, it looks just as good in terms of color at f/1.4.

L Chambers
f5.6 @ 1/200 sec, ISO 200; 2018-12-17 13:13:23
NIKON D850 + Sigma 40mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
ENV: Lundy Canyon aspen campground, altitude 7300 ft / 2225 m, 38°F / 3°C

[low-res image for bot]

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