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Sigma Confirms Rumors: The 18-35mm f/1.8 is the Real Deal

Sigma Confirms Rumors: The 18-35mm f/1.8 is the Real Deal

You might have heard the rumors about a new wide angle zoom lens with a crazy open aperture of f/1.8. Those rumors have just been confirmed to us by Sigma: it's real and it's the first zoom lens to maintain an f/1.8 aperture over the entire length of the zoom range. Now that is exciting. Meet the 18-35mm F1.8 DC HSM Art lens.

The 18-35mm is the latest addition to Sigma's Art line (a categorization it shares with the critically acclaimed 35mm f/1.4). In case you were unaware, the Art designation is part of Sigma's new Global Vision. From Sigma: "The Global Vision lenses have a sleek new design with the manufacturing year stamped on the barrel, and are categorized by use into one of three groups: Art, Contemporary and Sports. The Art category delivers high-level artistic expression through sophisticated and abundant expressive power."

This revolutionary, wide aperture, standard zoom lens is created for DSLR cameras with APS-C size sensors, which translates to a focal range of 27-52.5mm on a 35mm camera. With a minimum focusing distance of 11 inches, and a maximum magnification ratio of 1:4.3, Sigma is calling the the 18-35mm ideal for landscapes, portraits, still-life, studio, close-up and casual photography.




The 18-35mm lens incorporates Sigma’s improved AF/MF switch and the use of Thermally Stable Composite (TSC) compound material, which has a high affinity to metal parts, consistently performs well at extreme temperatures and reduces the size and weight of the lens. It will also be compatible with Sigma's new lens dock that will be released later this year.

The lens has internal focusing and zooming, which prevents changes to the size of the lens (big points for this). Additionally, the front part of the lens does not rotate, so special filters like circular polarizers can be used.



The 18-35mm lens’ Super Multi-Layer Coating reduces flare and ghosting and provides sharp and high contrast images, even in backlit conditions. The petal-type hood that is supplied with the lens will provide extra protection from flare and ghosting. Sigma’s Hyper Sonic Motor (HSM) ensures a silent, high-speed AF function and the optimized auto focus algorithm results in smooth focusing and full-time manual focusing capability. Lastly, the nine-blade, rounded diaphragm creates an attractive, round bokeh at large-aperture settings.





Lens Construction: 17 elements in 12 groups
Minimum aperture: F16
Filter size: 72mm
Angle of view (SD1): 76.5°-44.2°
Minimum focusing distance: 11 in.
Dimensions (Diameter x Length): 3.1 inches x 4.8 inches
Number of diaphragm blades: 9 (rounded diaphragm)
Maximum magnification ratio: 1:4.3
Weight: 28.6oz

The only downside I can see from reading about the new lens is that it is only for APS-C camera bodies, a real bummer for those who use full frame cameras. But look at it this way: Sigma is totally capable of releasing something like this (like make a 24-70 f/1.8? Please?) for a full frame camera. Honestly, it's only a matter of time.

As of now, there is no pricing or availability released but we will let you know as soon as we hear from Sigma.

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Previous comments
Luke Lee The Photog's picture

This will lock my thought of getting aps-c sensor for back up.

This is one of those "OH MY FREAKING GOD" announcements that seem too good to be true... Then you discover it is designed for APS-C bodies...

Patrick Hall's picture

I don't understand why everyone is so upset about the APS-C bodies. I mean, this is the first time in my career I actually own all FF sensors but that is only because the D400 never came out. IMO it's still really convenient to have a DX camera. The image quality in every single DSLR out at the moment blows away the quality I had with my first D200 and maybe even my D700 at this point. If a FF 1.8 zoom is not physically possible (weight, size, cost) then honestly it seems like the next batch of DX cameras could actually be better than the FF counter parts if you gain over 2 stops of light with a zoom lens that is 1.8.

Wilson Wong's picture and me are in the same boat. I was waiting for D400 until Fujifilm came and snatched me away. Shame Nikon!!

And I agree with you wholeheartedly. With so much improvement in the APS-C scene, why the need for full frame really?

make one for M4/3 please.

Adam Cross's picture

can't stop looking at it, these new designs are absolutely gorgeous

William Zhou's picture

Something to keep in mind: the shorter true FL and longer camera-subject distance due to this being a cropped lens compromises its shallow DoF capabilities. Still, fast f/1.8 WA is impressive. Will hold off buying the Nikon 28mm.

Henry Fan's picture

24-70 f/1.8 for full frame then you got my attention, and most likely my money.

Adam Cross's picture

yeah, allllll of your money ;)

Jim Meyers's picture

Seriously folks, there's a reason great lenses cost a lot of money and it ain't the brand name.

Henry Fan's picture

There's probably tons of vignette wide open; you can't bend the laws of physics.

You don't have to, if the glasses are large enough and if the construction is well-designed, the vignette will be decreased to a level you can wipe in off easily in Lightroom.

Henry Fan's picture

Judging from the lens mount, this is not a large lens. To get proper f/1.8 this thing would need to be twice as large

Adrian Fernando's picture

this is going to be perfect for apsc. since its too good be true, i'm quite wary of the price.

Olof Berglund's picture

Given the recent performance vs price ratios of new sigma and tamron lenses I doubt it will be very expensive for the quality of the glass. That is if this zoom can perform as well as the "A" on the lens implies.

Trevor Dayley's picture

Crop sensor only #fail... I wish they would do this for the full frame guys.

photodoggy7's picture

I would be much more excited if this was full frame.

Vidar Mathisen's picture

sweet !

David Ferebee's picture

What?!?! Go Sigma. Game changer. If it is sharp and affordable. Game changer for Nikon and Canon.

Michael Carney's picture

definitely not the first zoom lens to maintain f/1.8, just the first designed specifically for (APS-C) still cameras. Fujinon has a few t/1.9 (so probably even faster than f/1.8) S35 PL mount lenses (again, APS-C size coverage) and Zeiss has a few T/2.0 (about f1/.8) 2/3" lenses. Even though photo has been around longer, the slightly smaller film/sensor sizes (and large hollywood budgets) have allowed for more interesting developments in technology, earlier.

Kyle Sanders's picture

I wish people understood this more! The reason why it can be f/1.8 is that it is APS-C. The larger format the sensor, the more light you need to gather to make a bright image. This is why we don't have 80 f/1.4 medium format lenses, and why we have t/1.9 Super 16 (APS-C/M43) cine lenses.

You had me until you said APSc...

RUSS T.'s picture

Even if a person has only full frame camera bodies, they might want to
consider buying a crop sensor body, cheap used one, and this lens as a
backup setup.

BUT, whatever you decide to do, this is an Interesting announcement indeed.

I am looking forward to seeing what price they stick on this thing.

Bert McLendon's picture

I'm just glad that Canon and Nikon have a real threat to make them get off their asses and make "new" things and think differently. Go Sigma!

Michael Hickey's picture

How many people can actually interpret the squiggly line graphs and charts?

Joe Ravenstein's picture

I bit on the Sig 8-16mm uwa, Looks like another Sig to add to the kit.