New Sigma 24-35mm f/2 Art: Get three primes in one with the world’s first f/2 zoom for full frame cameras


posted Friday, June 19, 2015 at 1:00 AM EDT


EDIT, 07/13: We've now posted our full review of the Sigma 24-35mm over at SLRgear!

Back in 2013, Sigma stunned the photography world with their impressive 18-35mm f/1.8 zoom lens, the world's first f/1.8 constant-aperture zoom lens. While this lens thoroughly impressed us with excellent image quality performance, it was designed solely for APS-C cameras, leaving many a full-frame shooter wanting for an ultra-fast-aperture zoom.

Well, now the wait is over.

Taking what they learned from the Sigma 18-35mm f/1.8 lens, the company has unveiled the Sigma 24-35mm f/2 DG HSM Art, the world's first constant f/2.0 zoom lens for full-frame cameras. Now, full-frame DSLR photographers can have prime-quality, fast-aperture lenses -- particularly in the wildly-popular 24mm, 28mm, 35mm sweet spots -- all with the convenience of a single lens. Sigma claims the optical performance is comparable to their highly-regarded 24mm f/1.4 Art and 35mm f/1.4 Art lenses.

As with Sigma's other recent lenses designed under their new Global Vision design and construction philosophy, the new Sigma 24-35mm f/2.0 Art lens uses the latest Sigma technology, including each copy undergoing quality assurance testing with their A1 measurement system. The lens barrel is also constructed out of their proprietary, metal-like Thermally Stable Composite compound. Thanks to its aluminum-like thermal properties, the TSC material allows the lens to be constructed with a higher precision than if it was made from typical polycarbonate. The TSC material also helps reduce the overall size and weight of the lens.

For the optical construction, the new 24-35mm f/2 lens uses a variety of advanced lens elements to help reduce aberrations and distortion, including a single "F" Low Dispersion glass element, seven Special Low Dispersion glass elements and two aspherical elements. In total, the lens consists of 18 lens elements situated into 13 groups. The lens elements feature Sigma's Super Multi-Layer Coating to reduce flare and ghosting as well as increase image contrast.

This new Sigma lens also includes a circular, nine-blade aperture diaphragm, which in conjunction with the wide f/2.0 aperture, should make for very pleasing background blurring. The lens aperture ranges from f/2.0 to f/16 at the smallest. The close-focusing distance is rather respectable at just 11 inches (1:4.4x mag. ratio), making it suitable for close-up photography.

Autofocus, like many of Sigma's lenses, is powered by their nearly silent and very quick Hyper Sonic Motor. However, the HSM system also allows for full-time manual focus override.

The lens itself weighs in a little over two pounds (33.2 oz.) and has a diameter of about 3.4 inches and is 4.8 inches in length. This puts it quite similar to the size and weight to Sigma's versatile 24-105mm f/4 Art lens, which was a little on the hefty side. However, considering the amount of weight and added bulk of carrying a trio of fast primes, like Sigma's 24 f/1.4 and 35 f/1.4 lenses, the 24-35mm is certainly a convenient option.

While pricing and availability have yet to be announced, the Sigma 24-35mm f/2.0 Art lens will be sold in Canon EF, Nikon F and Sigma SA mounts.  The lens will be compatible with Sigma's USB Dock configuration accessory as well as eligible for the company's Mount Conversion Service, should you decide to "switch sides."

Pre-orders are not yet available, however, the folks over at B&H have product pages set up for all three models, and you can put your name down to be notified when they go on sale. B&H does indicate that availability is expected around the end of July.