Sigma 45mm f/2.8 DG DN Contemporary - Review / Test Report
Lens Reviews - Sony Alpha (Full Format)

Review by Klaus Schroiff, published September 2019


While Sony E-mount lenses are nothing new for Sigma, it took them quite a while to design native full-format lenses - as opposed to the rather 2nd-class approach of converting some of their DSLR lenses. However, also thanks to their parallel activities around the L-mount alliance we can expect to see more interesting offerings.  One of them is the Sigma 45mm f/2.8 DG DN Contemporary. Some may question the word "interesting" here given the slow speed for such a standard prime lens but it is actually quite unique in a couple of aspects. The rather high price tag of 550USD/EUR may give you a hint already.

One of the misconceptions around this lens relates to the somewhat strange "Contemporary" classification by Sigma. According to their definition, these lenses are targeting the broader market - balancing price and quality. However, the build quality of this lens speaks a very different language. Of course, a 45mm f/2.8 lens is fairly small and simple to start with but it's among the highest quality constructions that we have seen here - exceeding the already high quality of Sigma ART lenses actually. The all-metal lens body may not be all that unusual but it features a dedicated aperture ring which we've only seen on a handful of Sony E-mount lenses so far (like on the Zeiss FE 35mm f/1.4 ZA). Furthermore, the focus ring operates as smooth as silk with a dampened touch like in high-quality manual focus lenses. Another design feature is the fluted, metal lens hood. While the lens is not fully weather-sealed, it does at least offer a dust/splash-proof mount.

The AF is pretty fast and near-silent. Focusing works "by-wire" albeit you only notice this due to the lack of a focus distance indicator on the lens. Needless to say but the Sigma 45mm f/2.8 DG DN Contemporary is compatible with Sony's digital auto-correction as well as OSS. It does not feature in-lens stabilization though.

Optical construction8 elements in 7 groups inc. 2x aspherical elements
Number of aperture blades7 (rounded)
min. focus distance0.24m (max. magnification 1:4)
Filter size55mm
Hoodbarrel-shaped (bayonet mount, supplied)
Other featuresAperture ring, dust and moisture resistant mount
MountSony FE

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