That moment when you her this freaking focal length and and aperture combo, you keep wondering about the insane possibilities of image making and you let yourself drool into that bokehlacious fantasy world where you cant wait to actually witness the magic. Sigma’s 135mm f/1.8 is one such piece of marvel I had been waiting to want since a very long and its worth the wait.
Nikon’s 70-200mm f/2.8 has been my best telephoto partner and its in my bag since 5 years now. I always used think that 2.8 is the widest anyone can go for a telephoto lens till Sigma’s 135 arrived. I believe its insanely difficult to construct such amazing piece of glass. It’s a marvel!
After the mighty 50mm, the second most obvious choice for portrait photography is 135mm. 135mm always had f/2.8 until now and now its even brighter and sharper with the Sigma’s newly launched 135mm f/1.8 from their flagship ‘Art’ Series. The lens look like a complex make that has 13 elements in 10 groups. There are even Super Low Dispersion and Flourite Low Dispersion, 2 each elements that are multicoated. These help to reduce the sun flares. It comes with a large and efficient 82mm lens hood and weights around 1.3 kg which I think is a huge mass to carry around over big Dslr Body. This heavy lens body is completely dust proof and splash proof.
There is a wide manual focusing ring that can be used in AF mode that helps in overriding the focusing position selected and make final adjustments. Besides these are the switched to work across 1.5 meter of distance to infinity.
While I used the lens on my Nikon D810, I observed that that focusing had issues as the distance from the subject increased. I think this kind of behavior is very common when it comes to massive camera sensors and distances from the subject. You need to make micro focusing adjustments in your camera body for that particular lens using AF Fine Tune options. Focusing is fast accurate most of the times and very silent. The lens aperture has 9 rounded blades that gives amazing round bokeh which I am sure everyone will fall in love with.
The lens is sharpest at the center right from its widest aperture. The minimum aperture for this lens is f/16 which makes sure you have good quality images with all the focal lengths. The colors and contrast are very well rendered with minimal traces of lens fringing. The backlit situations can be handled pretty well due to SLD glass elements in the lens. There is no any chromatic aberration both at the centre or at the edges and you need not worry to fix it in the post.
Things I like about the lens
- Excellent shaprness and great image quality
- Close focusing distance
- Dust and Splash proof
- Very Low Distortion and almost no chromatic aberration
- Bright 1.8 aperture
- Well constructed lens body
Things I did not like about the lens
- Insane weight
- No inbuilt stabilizer