Sigma 35mm Art @ f/1.4 on the Nikon D810 (very, very short review).

Inspiration, Nikon, Nikon D810, Portrait, Q&A, Sigma 35mm f/1.4 ART, Teaching point

Ever since I switched over to the Nikon D810 and started using Sigma Art lenses, I’ve received a few questions asking me how well the Sigmas perform on the high-resolution D810.

Well let me put it this way: the internet got it right… these lenses are exceptional.

The Art lenses are the only lenses I’ve tried on the D810 that gave me the kind of performance I’d gotten used to with my Leica gear.  In fact, I’d venture to say I probably would have already abandoned the D810 and missed out on what the camera sensor is truly capable of, if it wasn’t for the Sigma lenses.

As a simple demonstration, I’m posting a crop from yesterday’s image Up in order to illustrate the sort of central sharpness you can expect when using the 35 Art @ f/1.4 (focus is on the near eye):


Up (central magnification - Nikon D810 and Sigma 35mm ART at 1.4)

Sharpness, of course, is only one facet of lens performance, but I also appreciate how this lens has very little distortion and how beautifully it handles light, colour, and out-of-focus rendering.  Last, but not least, I also appreciate how Sigma has consciously avoided adorning the exterior with tacky emblems: it comes wrapped in a wonderfully nondescript dark body with minimal markings:

Sigma 35mm 1.4 ART - Prosophos



10 thoughts on “Sigma 35mm Art @ f/1.4 on the Nikon D810 (very, very short review).

  1. This is a gorgeous portrait, Peter. Your image demonstrates how when the Sigma Art 35 works, it sings. I have commented previously on the tendency of this lens to produce frenetic or busy bokeh with complex backgrounds, but I see no evidence of this here. I returned the Sigma Art for the Nikon 35 1.4, but your post makes me want my Sigma 35 Art back again. And thus, G.A.S. goes on…

    1. Interesting and timely question Andrew, as I’ve been thinking about this lately.

      I think I’m enjoying the 35mm FOV more on the D810 than the 50mm FOV, (though both Sigma lenses are outstanding in their respective FOV).

      However, on rangefinders I would still place myself firmly in the 50mm FOV camp.

  2. Hi Peter. Not a comment, but rather some info for you before you get too enamoured with the ART lenses. I think this is the same thing that makes Leica lenses have ’roundness and depth’ in the way they draw.
    And it’s a fellow Canadian no less 🙂
    Even thought this is just for you, do tell what your take is on that. Interesting site.
    Oh, where to you have your colour film developed? Downtown Camera.
    Thank you I enjoy your site, Stephan

    1. Yannick Khong has some outlandish and odd views around modern lenses that aren’t supported by any objective evidence (unless you count the Angry Photographer…) as far as I can see. His views on the Sigma Art lenses beggar belief, speaking as someone who has used them for years. Sadly, his recent blog post has distributed his unsupported thesis more widely thanks to its cynical syndication by the likes of Petapixel and other sites.

      Aside from that, nice portrait with a lovely three dimensional render Peter. If you do have time, you should look into the Sigma Art 24mm as well.

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