Independent lens giant Sigma has today unveiled a 20mm f/1.4 lens, due on sale next month priced £849.99, hailing it as a manufacturing breakthrough.

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Trumpeted as the world’s first 20mm f/1.4 lens designed for full-frame DSLRs, the 20mm f/1.4 DG HSM will be out in Sigma, Nikon and Canon lens mounts, as part of Sigma’s growing Art line-up.

It boasts a large double-sided aspherical lens, measuring 59mm in diameter.

‘Lenses of this type had been considered extremely difficult to manufacture,’ Sigma said in a statement released today.

‘…but Sigma took on the challenge to realise an f/1.4 ultra-wideangle lens that fulfils the strict performance requirements of the Sigma Art line.’

The Japanese company added: ‘What made this breakthrough possible were Sigma’s advanced manufacturing technologies, which the company has developed over time by producing a wide range of ultra-wideangle and large-aperture lenses.’

Features include five special low-dispersion glass elements to help cut chromatic aberration.

Sigma claims that its ‘minimal distortion’ makes the lens ideal for photographing landscapes, starry skies and architecture.

The newcomer incorporates a nine-blade rounded diaphragm and a Hyper Sonic Motor, for ‘high AF speed’.

The 15-elements-in-11-groups lens has a minimum shooting distance of 27.6cm.

Specification, as supplied by Sigma
Lens construction: 15 elements in 11 groups
Minimum aperture: f/16
Angle of view (35mm): 94.5°
Minimum focusing distance: 27.6cm/10.9in
Dimensions (diameter x length): 90.7×129.8mm/3.6×5.1in
Number of diaphragm blades: 9 (rounded diaphragm)
Maximum magnification ratio: 1:7.1
Weight: 950g/33.5oz