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08-11-2012, 12:05 PM   #1
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Sigma 28mm f/1.8

The Sigma 28mm f/1.8 is now on sale for $399, pretty much everywhere, until the end of September. There aren't many reviews of this lens on this site and there haven't been many posts about it over the past few years. Of course, Sigma can be a bit of a gamble, but the lens comes with a four-year warrantee in the U.S. I have a number of other primes but I really like 28mm on APS-C. This lens is large, however. It would be nice if it was the same size and weight as Sigma's 30mm f/1.4, which is almost $100 more. But it isn't and Pentax doesn't make any new lenses at this focal length. So... here in 2012... are any Pentaxians still using this lens? If you are, do you have any thoughts to share?

08-11-2012, 12:26 PM - 1 Like   #2
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I have both the 30 and the 28, the 28 I use more often and use it quite a bit. The lens is sharp stopped down once and extremly sharp stopped down to the 5's. as for "hit or miss", any consumer lens manufacturer including pentax lenses can be hit and miss so I wouldn't worry too much about that. Just to note, the close focusing of this lens is an exceptional feature of this beast...
08-11-2012, 12:36 PM - 1 Like   #3
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There is a refurbished one in the Sigma Outlet store at the moment for $339. Also a 20/1.8 and 24/1.8...

Sigma Outlet Shop | sigmaphoto.com
08-11-2012, 12:56 PM   #4
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Thank you both. Hmm... I wonder about the refurbs. Might they be a better gamble because Sigma USA inspects each individual lens - perhaps more carefully than at the factory?


Last edited by Biro; 08-11-2012 at 01:03 PM.
08-11-2012, 01:10 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by Biro Quote
Thank you both. Hmm... I wonder about the refurbs. Might they be a better gamble because Sigma USA inspects each individual lens - perhaps more carefully than at the factory?
They have excellent custom service. I wouldn't worry about it.
08-11-2012, 01:13 PM - 1 Like   #6
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I have the Sigma that's one (I think) generation older than what's available new. It's got a 58mm filter, 7 blade aperture and focuses to a more ordinary 0.3m. Mine happens to be manual focus. Yesterday there was an AF version of this lens in the marketplace, but it looked like it was going to be sold. It has taken me a while to warm up to this lens but the more I use it, the more I like it. It's very sharp, as sharp as anything else I've seen at 28 (mostly the cheaper end but still). It doesn't fall off on the corners dramatically like the Sigma 30/1.4, and works well. I even like the focus ring despite its short throw. Because the lens is so sharp, the viewfinder has a real snap into focus feel that you don't get in ordinary 28s. Now the only dislike I have is size, though this lens is not huge.

I wouldn't ever use the new one, it is just too big, but that is just a personal thing. Otherwise it's supposed to be better, and focuses closer. It's pretty easy to find a use for a fast sharp AF 28mm lens, and not a lot of Pentaxes to look at here.
08-11-2012, 01:25 PM   #7
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I just e-mailed the technical questions section of The Sigma Outlet. Let's see if they respond on Monday. But it looks like they might have a sale. Thanks again.
08-11-2012, 03:07 PM   #8
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Biro, they have a review of the lens at Photozone.com. The review however is for the Sigma 28mm f/1.8 lens on a Nikon Full Frame so keep that in mind.

08-11-2012, 03:45 PM   #9
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If you really want "true usage reviews" IMHO the absolute best place to get it [for any lens] is B&H via the users reviews. Use the search and get the right lens in the search results and use the reviews "across all brands" (for third party lenses) - this should give you a pretty good feel of it's performance. Taking all of the user scores into account, this is a 4.5 out of 5 lens at B&H and rated 9 out of 10 here, essentially users rate this lens as excellent.
08-11-2012, 05:23 PM   #10
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I haven't seen anyone mention SLRgear.com yet. If you go to that website, and look up the index of Sigma prime lenses - you'll see a nice discussion of the Sigma 24, 28 and 30, f1.8 to f1.4. I always like clicking on their "blur index" and looking at how the focus field changes relative to aperture. All 3 start to get better throughout the field at f2.8 to f8 in the case of the 24 and 28, while the 30 maintains sharpness and field to F11. Real sharpness in the charts is indicated by the magenta colored centers that relate to 1-2 blur index in the graphics. The 24 and 28 have the macro close focusing, while the 30 has HSM and a flatter field in general. There are user reviews on that site as well.

good luck with your lens hunting.
08-12-2012, 05:38 AM   #11
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The optics and features of the Sigma EX DG 28mm/1.8 leave nothing to be desired, to me; but I found mine just plain too big to carry around all the time. 339 is a great price, if there is a warranty I would jump on that. Sigma customer service has impressed me in the past.
08-12-2012, 09:16 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Just1MoreDave Quote
I have the Sigma that's one (I think) generation older than what's available new. It's got a 58mm filter, 7 blade aperture and focuses to a more ordinary 0.3m. Mine happens to be manual focus. Yesterday there was an AF version of this lens in the marketplace, but it looked like it was going to be sold. It has taken me a while to warm up to this lens but the more I use it, the more I like it. It's very sharp, as sharp as anything else I've seen at 28 (mostly the cheaper end but still). It doesn't fall off on the corners dramatically like the Sigma 30/1.4, and works well. I even like the focus ring despite its short throw. Because the lens is so sharp, the viewfinder has a real snap into focus feel that you don't get in ordinary 28s. Now the only dislike I have is size, though this lens is not huge.

I wouldn't ever use the new one, it is just too big, but that is just a personal thing. Otherwise it's supposed to be better, and focuses closer. It's pretty easy to find a use for a fast sharp AF 28mm lens, and not a lot of Pentaxes to look at here.
I have the AF version of this lens. I kinda am thinking about selling it since I got a DA 35/2.4. The Sigma is faster and I think 28mm is a little more useful focal length on APS-C, but the Sigma just isn't all that sharp below f/4. It also has somewhat muted colors. My Tamron 17-50/2.8 is sharper, whereas the DA 35/2.4 is definitely sharper than the Tamron. So while the Sigma is faster, the DA 35/2.4 at its widest aperture is way sharper than the Sigma at the same aperture.
08-14-2012, 06:24 AM   #13
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Great lens but now that I have the FA31, I don't feel the need to keep it. If anyone is looking for one, PM me.
08-14-2012, 07:51 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by L33tGreg Quote
Great lens but now that I have the FA31, I don't feel the need to keep it. If anyone is looking for one, PM me.


PM sent
08-17-2012, 06:30 PM   #15
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Well, I pulled the trigger on the Sigma 28mm f1.8. It should arrive in the middle of next week. We'll see how sharp it is on my particular K-5 and K200D. But I have realistic expectations about what I'll get wide open.
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