Sigma 14mm f/1.8 DG HSM ART (Canon) - Review / Test
Lens Reviews - Canon EOS (Full Format)

Review by Klaus Schroiff, published November 2017


So Sigma went where no man has gone before ... again. This time we'll explore the new Sigma 14mm f/1.8 DG HSM ART. Typically such ultra-wide lenses peak at a speed of (warp ... ah no ...) f/2/8. A little while back two of the exotics started to offer something a little faster (Irix 15mm f/2.4, Samyang XP 14mm f/2.4) but the Sigma is faster still. And yes, it does make a difference when using the lens in the field although it doesn't make things any simpler. Yes, you can shoot in much darker conditions at large apertures but at f/1.8 the depth-of-field is often shallow even at this focal length. Emphasizing a subject is now a feasible option - whereas with f/2.8 lenses you have to get really close in order to do that. Of course, such capabilities come at a price - literally. However, at around 1600EUR/USD it's not excessively high and actually somewhat more affordable than the common gang of 16-35mm f/2.8 lenses and Canon's own 14mm f/2.8 USM L II for instance.

The other price that you have to pay is the burden of carrying it - at 1.12kg it's a brick. The immense bulb-like front element is not only quite a sight, it also makes the lens rather 'fat'. Professional photographers may be used to all that but to the uninitiated, it may come as a surprise.

As the name implies, we are talking about a Sigma ART lens here - thus a designated professional grade lens. The build quality is truly superb. Sigma used its usual recipe of TSC ( Thermally Stable Composite ) material based on a brass mount. The focus ring operates smoothly. The lens is also dust and splash-proof.

Sigma's "large" HSM drive is both fast and near silent. However, we weren't quite as impressed by the focus accuracy. Whether this is a fault of the lens is unclear though. Canon cameras (the 5Ds R in this case) aren't really super accurate with ultra-wide lenses anyway. In any case - we had several outliers in low light situations so you may prefer to switch to live mode for focusing and/or switch to manual focusing altogether when shooting at large apertures.
Available in native Canon and Nikon mount, it is possible to use Sigma's Mount Converter MC-11 for using the lens on Sony mirrorless cameras.

Optical construction16 elements in 11 groups including 3x aspherical, 4xSLD and 3x FLD elements
Number of aperture blades9 (rounded)
min. focus distance0.27m (max. magnification ratio 1:9.8)
Filter size-
Hoodpetal-shaped (built-in)
Other featuresweather sealing