Sigma's Latest Masterpiece: We Review the 24-70mm f/2.8 DG DN II Art Lens

Sigma's Latest Masterpiece: We Review the 24-70mm f/2.8 DG DN II Art Lens

Sigma’s newest Art series lens, the 24-70mm F2.8 DG DN II, takes the winning formula of its predecessor and dials it up a notch, boasting significant advancements in sharpness, autofocus speed, and overall handling. The lens isn’t content with simply meeting the high expectations set by the original; it surpasses them, delivering exceptional image quality that will impress even the most critical photographers.

This lens tackles anything from studio shoots to landscapes and then some, making it a serious contender in the market. Does it live up to the hype? We review it to find out!

Build Quality

The Sigma 24-70mm f2.8 DG DN II Art lens leverages the latest technologies, according to the press release, and is approximately 7% smaller and 10% lighter than its previous incarnation, weighing in at just 745 grams.

The lens has a solid feel to it and is dust- and splash-resistant, allowing you to feel safer in more challenging weather conditions. There’s also a water and oil-repellent coating on the front element to add that extra layer of protection.

The lens now has the addition of a de-clickable aperture ring, which could be useful for filmmakers to make smooth adjustments during recordings. There’s also a lock switch for the aperture ring to prevent accidental changes. Other buttons on the body of the lens include two autofocus lock buttons that are assignable via the menu depending on the camera model. One is positioned on the top of the lens and the other on the side. An MF/AF button and a zoom lock button lock the lens at 24mm to prevent any barrel drift under its weight. I only locked this when transporting the camera, and when in use, I never noticed the lens extending unintentionally. Perhaps they are future-proofing it, as this can sometimes happen with lenses.

The zoom and focus rings are well knurled and provide a good feel. The friction is smooth and with enough resistance to provide accurate manual focusing. It’s also worth mentioning that the focusing ring turns infinitely, which I found very useful on some occasions.

The lens hood is a solid plastic petal-shaped design that attaches and locks in place with a discernible click. The filter thread size of 82mm will perhaps mean you don’t have to buy any extra step-up/step-down rings if you already have those sizes of filters.

Key Specifications

  • Lens construction: 19 elements in 15 groups (6 FLD, 2 SLD, 5 aspherical elements)
  • Angle of view: 84.1-34.3°
  • Number of diaphragm blades: 11 (rounded diaphragm)
  • Minimum aperture: F22
  • Minimum focusing distance: 17 cm (W)-34 cm (T)
  • Maximum magnification ratio: 1:2.7 (W)-1:4 (T)
  • Filter size: 82mm
  • Dimensions (max diameter x length): 87.8mm x 120.2mm
  • Weight: 745 grams


I found the optical performance of the lens exceptional, so much so that I pre-ordered one. This is now the second Sigma lens I have purchased very soon after test driving due to the quality of the images. The quality of the images it produces in terms of sharpness and clarity right across the frame is something I would’ve expected from a far more expensive lens. The lens comprises 19 elements in 15 groups that include 6 FLD (F Low Dispersion) glass elements, 2 SLD (Special Low Dispersion) glass elements, and 5 aspherical elements. This configuration of optics helps to suppress various aberrations and color fringing and works very well across the entire zoom range.

It’s ideal for capturing detailed close-up shots with a minimum focusing distance of 17 cm at 24mm. The f2.8 constant aperture ensures excellent low-light performance and allows for lovely bokeh and background separation.

Thanks to Sigma’s HLA (High-response Linear Actuator) motor, the autofocus is fast, quiet, and accurate, and in the time I used the lens, it never missed once. I also used it for some video work and again had no issues. Coupled with Sony’s eye tracking in the Sony a7R V, it performed flawlessly for me.

I predominantly photographed a lot of architectural images with the lens to see how it performed across the frame in terms of sharpness with the varying angles of the buildings. Capturing the intricate details of the different architecture allowed me to assess the lens’s sharpness and distortion control. The distortion is minimal and easily corrected in post. However, for the images shown here, I’ve performed no corrections to allow you to judge for yourself. The sharpness across the frame, even at 24mm, remained crisp, something I would expect from a far more expensive lens. The lens handled high-contrast scenes exceptionally well, delivering rich detail and minimal chromatic aberration, and even provided a sun star at f/7.1.

In addition to architectural shots, I took the lens into the woods to see how it handled more organic forms. Although early in the morning there was still plenty of light, the lens’s ability to capture fine details in the woodland, from the texture of tree bark to the canopy overhead, was impressive.

I wasn’t looking for faults or issues with the lens; I was looking to see how it would perform within the environments I usually photograph. As I previously mentioned, I pre-ordered one as it performed so well for me in these environments, providing everything I required in terms of sharpness and detail.


  • Sharpness
  • Weight
  • Addition of an aperture ring
  • Price


I think Sigma has covered everything here you would need in a mid-range zoom in terms of sharpness, functionality, and value. There isn't anything I could find that would be a consideration; it's a fantastic lens.


A 24-70mm is usually a key component in any photographer’s kitbag, and thanks to the lightweight design, the lens is relatively compact at 120mm and highly portable. It’s ideal for a whole host of photographic genres, as you would guess, covering everything from wide angle to mid-range.

This lens, to put it simply, is outstanding. The lens is currently available for Sony and Leica mounts and, in my opinion, a very worthwhile investment if you are in the market for a mid-range focal length. The returning images are consistently sharp and crisp, and on some occasions, I actually softened the clarity of the image to achieve the results I was seeking. In my time with the lens, I didn’t program the buttons to any functionality via the menu, and perhaps never will once I have my own. Yet with the two of them available, anything is possible.

May 30 is the release dateof the Sigma 24-70mm f/2.8 DG DN II Art Lens, currently available for pre-order. If you are in the market for a mid-range telephoto and haven’t purchased one, yet I would definitely check the lens out.

Gary McIntyre's picture

Gary McIntyre is a landscape photographer and digital artist based on the west coast of Scotland. As well as running photography workshops in the Glencoe region, providing online editing workshops, Gary also teaches photography and image editing at Ayrshire college.

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How does this compare with Tamron's 28-75/2.8 G2, another good standard zoom that's recently been updated?