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FORUMS Canon Cameras, Lenses & Accessories Canon EF and EF-S Lenses 
Thread started 31 May 2011 (Tuesday) 03:33
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50mm F1.4, Canon focuses better?

 
plasticmotif
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May 31, 2011 10:04 |  #16

m.shalaby wrote in post #12509010 (external link)
OP - yes, the Canon overall is know to be a much more reliable lens then the Sigma, and focuses better. (first hand experience, I've owned both.)

I've went down the Sigma route to see all the hype. My honest recommendation - don't bother. And don't let the 100% crop pixel peepers try to pursuade you out of a perfectly good lens - the Canon 50mm 1.4.

no one is arguing that it's not a good lens, because it is.

The Sigma is, however, better. If you are arguing that, you're flat wrong. I've shot with about 20 45-58mm lenses in the past 15 months, I own the Sigma. It's a great lens.


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m.shalaby
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May 31, 2011 10:08 |  #17

alpha_1976 wrote in post #12509045 (external link)
Wait until you have a lens with dead AF in your hand!

I'm not going to hold my breath, based on the few people here who reported their issue. I'll rest at night knowing the thousands who have had their lenses for years without issue.

And now that I can see the Sigma fan boys strolling in, I'll make my exit.

I've made my points, and I'm not going to go post for post with you guys... I have work to do, and I'll leave on this note - I absolutley LOVE my Canon 50 1.4 - that along with the Sigma can't take a shot of a subject more then 10-12 feet back. Junk. Sorry, pure junk.

Have fun taking shots of your keyboards and pixel peep at 100%




  
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plasticmotif
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May 31, 2011 10:09 |  #18

m.shalaby wrote in post #12508962 (external link)
my highlight was his word "much" - and no, its not "much" better in any category you mentioned.

sharper: - no, its not "much" sharper. if they both hit focus, you would be hard pressed to find a difference. and if there is a slight difference during your pixel peeping 100% blow ups (which I get the feeling you do a lot) - its nothing that can be slightly bumped up in post. (image below at 1.8 looks plenty sharp to me, with zero sharpness boost in PP). have you owned both? are you judging based on your XSi which you can't do a proper MA adjustment with? "much sharper" - ha, pure garbage.

nice pic

The Sigma is sharper from 1.4 to 2.0. From then on out it's negligible.

People that had a bad copy of the Sigma, seem to go on tirades about how 'bad and unreliable' this lens is.

I know three people in my camera club that have had a Canon 50/1.4 AF motor die. How's that for reliable?

I also know two people who got bad front/backfocusing copies of the Sigma(one was me). Guess what it took to fix them. Two weeks at the repair center. Came back perfect and have not had a hitch since.

straight out of camera, focusing on a moving subject.

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alpha_1976
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May 31, 2011 10:11 |  #19

m.shalaby wrote in post #12509078 (external link)
I'm not going to hold my breath, based on the few people here who reported their issue. I'll rest at night knowing the thousands who have had their lenses for years without issue.

And now that I can see the Sigma fan boys strolling in, I'll make my exit.

I've made my points, and I'm not going to go post for post with you guys... I have work to do, and I'll leave on this note - I absolutley LOVE my Canon 50 1.4

No one is denying how you absolutely love your canon and many more too. I did too!

I am no sigma fan either.


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Sirrith
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May 31, 2011 10:11 |  #20

m.shalaby wrote in post #12508962 (external link)
my highlight was his word "much" - and no, its not "much" better in any catigory you mentioned.


And one other thing - try taking a photo with your Sigma of a subject that is more then 10 feet away... then tell me how your OOF image is "much better".

Your argument is based on the premise that we have to take each individual element and compare. Why do we have to do that? Can you provide a rationale? When everything is taken as a whole, and there's no reason not to, because you use a lens as an entire object, you don't just use parts of it, the Sigma is "much" better.

Please OOF? If you're going to use that argument, then lets use one along the same lines against the Canon. How about you have a competition to see which AF's faster and more accurately with a Sigma 50 when your canon AF motor dies. And don't pretend that it doesn't happen, because its a known issue with the Canon 50 1.4...

You had a bad experience with Sigma, ok, fair enough. However, a good copy of the Sigma overall is "much" better than a good copy of the Canon.

m.shalaby wrote in post #12509010 (external link)
OP - yes, the Canon overall is know to be a much more reliable lens then the Sigma, and focuses better. (first hand experience, I've owned both.)

I've went down the Sigma route to see all the hype. My honest recommendation - don't bother. And don't let the 100% crop pixel peepers try to pursuade you out of a perfectly good lens - the Canon 50mm 1.4.

More reliable? Again I'll draw your attention to the Canon's AF motor issues. I'd rather have a lens with a risk of front/back focus, which I'm able to send in for calibration under warranty, then use with complete peace of mind thereafter, than a lens with a risk of the AF motor dying out of warranty and having to pay $1-200 for the repair.


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Sirrith
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May 31, 2011 10:13 |  #21

m.shalaby wrote in post #12509078 (external link)
I'm not going to hold my breath, based on the few people here who reported their issue. I'll rest at night knowing the thousands who have had their lenses for years without issue.

And now that I can see the Sigma fan boys strolling in, I'll make my exit.

LOL, based on the few people here who reported their issue. The EXACT same argument can be used for the sigma issues.
Bye now, don't let the door hit you on the way out.


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alpha_1976
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May 31, 2011 10:14 |  #22

m.shalaby wrote in post #12509078 (external link)
Have fun taking shots of your keyboards and pixel peep at 100%

yup..this is all what we do.


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m.shalaby
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May 31, 2011 10:17 as a reply to  @ alpha_1976's post |  #23

oh yeah, one more statement @ plasticmotif

if the Sigma is such a holy grail of a lens, why is the 50L on your wish list? ;)

peace guys - and i really mean that. i'm not getting caught up in your lens arguments. out.




  
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Sirrith
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May 31, 2011 10:20 |  #24

m.shalaby wrote in post #12509133 (external link)
peace guys - and i really mean that. i'm not getting caught up in your lens arguments. out.

'scuse me but... you started the argument here.


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boclcown
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May 31, 2011 10:26 |  #25

sigma owner here. No focus problems to report on first copy.


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pridash
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May 31, 2011 10:53 |  #26

calvinjhfeng wrote in post #12507859 (external link)
Does Canon's 50 f1.4 focus better than Sigma's 50 f1.4? Canon's is cheaper but it seems to have an older design in comparison to Sigma's. I read reviews about Sigma on digital picture, it said Canon is recommended over Sigma due to Sigma's inaccuracy in focusing. Is this true? Cause originally my plan was to grab a sigma because it has better built and design than Canon's.

OP - good copies of both lenses focus fine...choose whether build quality and bokeh differences to you are important. If they aren't, go with which ever is the cheaper option and is less hassle for you.

FWIW, I went through two copies of the Sigma - both had problems, but the third is perfect and I couldn't be happier. Why didn't I settle for the Canon?...For me I couldn't bear the rendering of the bokeh in certain scenarios. If I had the funds, I would have went for the 50L.


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MGiddings ­ Photography
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May 31, 2011 12:57 |  #27

Well all I can say is I have owned both the Canon and the Sigma. I now just own the Sigma. I just went for the best out of the two.


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amfoto1
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May 31, 2011 13:26 |  #28

alpha_1976 wrote in post #12509045 (external link)
Wait until you have a lens with dead AF in your hand!

Still waiting... It's been almost ten years now (and was bought used). It's still working fine!

In fact, the only lens I've got with "dead AF" is an older Sigma... a 28-75mm that works fine on EOS-3 and 10D, but causes errors on later Canon models. Sigma doesn't license lens tech from Canon, they reverse engineer it... Which sometimes leads to compatibility issues.

Two things I'd note about the Canon EF 50/1.4:

1. As long as I've had it, mine has been used with the matched lens hood, including storing it with the hood reversed. It came with the hood, so I suspect the previous owner did the same. Some say the stored hood really helps protect the focus ring from bumps, which might damage the focus mechanism.
2. I don't use manual focus override with this lens much or at all. It's not a conscious decision, just that because I use Back Button Focusing most of the time there's no need for me to do FTM. Some say that manually overriding the focus (which a USM lens is supposed to be able to do without damage) a lot on this particular lens will rapidly accelerate wear and tear on the focus mechanism.

Focusing on Sigma is faster because of HSM; Canon has micro-type USM and is not the true ring type USM which is what you usually get and therefore slower.

Not true. Most who have used both extensively will tell you focus speed is nearly identical. The Canon 50/1.4 AF is plenty fast in spite of being a hybrid type of USM. The best real world comparison I can give you... I cannot detect any noticeable difference in AF speed or accuracy between the 50/1.4 and 28/1.8 USM and 85/1.8 USM, both of which use "true" ring type USM.

I have not been able to first hand compare head to head with the Sigma very much, only briefly shot with the Siggy. But I was seriously tempted to upgrade a while back, took it for a few test drives and researched the heck out of the Siggy... I agree that it seems a better built lens (more metal, less plastic). But just because a lens is made with more metal, bigger lens elements and weighs a lot more doesn't actually mean it's going to be more durable in regular use. It might just seem better made. Only a long term test would tell.

In the end, I compared a lot images from both and simply didn't see enough difference to justify an "upgrade".

What I didn't like was all the reports of the Sigma quite frequentlly needing calibration. That's a quality control issue from the factory, or the lens gets knocked out of calibration all too easily during shipping.

I've also heard users report the Sigma's AF is sometimes unreliable, particularly missing at closer distances.

The Sigma is considerably bigger and heavier. To me it seems sort of absurd for a 50mm f1.4 to need a 77mm filter. Heck, the Canon 50/1.2L uses a 72mm! The Canon EF uses 58mm. Back in the day of manual focus lenses, Canon and Nikon 50/1.4 were 52mm diameter... some others were 49mm... few were larger than 55mm.

I like that the Sigma seems a wee bit sharper at f1.4, f1.6 and f1.8. The Canon isn't at it's very best wide open... usable, but better a little stopped down. They are nearly identical at f2 and f2.8, though the Siggy's corners might be crisper. The Canon seems sharper in the corners at f4, f5.6 and smaller. At even smaller aperture, the Sigma goes slightly softer throughout the image. The Canon has some chromatic abberations wide open.... The Siggy seems to get some in the corners at smaller apertures.

This comparison seems pretty accurate (external link).
That comparison is on a full frame camera where the corner comparisons are more noticeable. On a crop camera you won't see either lens' weaknesses in those areas.

The bokeh of the Sigma seems slightly smoother. It's got curved aperture blades (which Canon puts in some other lenses too) and has 9 total. The Canon has an 8-bladed aperture (by comparison, the 50/1.8 has 5-bladed aperture).

Color rendition is a little different between the two lenses, personally I don't think either one really superior to the other in this respect. Just different. The Siggy might be a little cooler.

The Siggy is a more resistant to flare, but both lenses are pretty good in this respect. At less than wide open, the Canon might have a little more contrast.

But overall, I really didn't see a whole lot of difference in image quality and that's the main reason I didn't bother upgrading.

And, at the time I was considering it, the Sigma was quite a bit more expensive. Since then it's street price has come down a bit and the Canon has increased. Price difference is a lot less of a factor today.

The Canon is way overdue for an update. It's design dates back to the early 1990s and AFAIK has never been revised. I wouldn't be surprised to find out if it were closely based upon earlier FD and FL lenses. But, 50mm lens formulas have been pretty thoroughly developed over the past 60+ years. So perhaps a reformulation of the optics isn't all that necessary. I do think Canon could improve the lens without much effort and without it becoming much more expensive... They just need to put curved aperture blades for even nicer bokeh... And upgrade it to true ring-type USM for inmproved durability.

Conclusion... If buying this lens for use on a crop camera, such as a short portrait in particular, and planning primarily to use it at or near wide open, then the Sigma probably has an edge. As a normal lens on full frame, usually stopped down one or two f-stops from wide open, the Canon is probably a slightly better choice. Neither lens is perfect, but in the end both lenses are quite capable. I see no reason someone shouldn't be able to get great shots with either one.


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plasticmotif
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May 31, 2011 13:52 |  #29

m.shalaby wrote in post #12509133 (external link)
oh yeah, one more statement @ plasticmotif

if the Sigma is such a holy grail of a lens, why is the 50L on your wish list? ;)

peace guys - and i really mean that. i'm not getting caught up in your lens arguments. out.

'cause I haven't messed with my 'wish' list in a while.

It's fixed :P


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May 31, 2011 18:15 as a reply to  @ plasticmotif's post |  #30

All I'm reading is people who own the Canon version claim it's better than the Sigma which they have not used, and vice versa. I've owned both, and they both have their flaws. In the end, I gave up both, lol. But from my personal experience, the images from the Sigma looked better overall, if the AF would land. As for the Canon I went through two copies of it after the ring stopped working. When the Canons were working they took great and sharp shots, but not as dreamy as the Sigma. Both Canon and Sigma were pretty unreliable wide open when indoors but you can't exactly expect that kind of performance from them or most primes for that matter. The only prime I've ever loved wide open and would shoot wide open anytime, anywhere is the 135mm f2L.


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