Sigma isn’t short of fast primes in its lineup, so where does this latest addition fit in? Michael Topham takes a closer look

Product Overview

Sigma 40mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art


Sigma 40mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art review


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Sigma 40mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art review: Build & Handling

Viewed alongside Sigma’s 35mm f/1.4 and 50mm f/1.4 Art lenses, the 40mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art is a bit of a brute. As well as having a chunkier barrel than the company’s 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art, it’s 31mm longer and 385g heavier.

Sigma 40mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art

The 40mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art, pictured here in the centre, is a considerably larger and heavier lens than the 35mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art (left) and the 50mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art (right)

The Sigma 35mm f/1.4 Art looks rather diminutive alongside it too and with a substantial 535g weight difference, the extra glass inside the 40mm f/1.4 is very noticeable, especially over prolonged spells of shooting. Being as large and heavy as it is, the lens balances best with full-frame cameras with a good sized handgrip, or one that has a battery grip fitted. Couple it to smaller APS-C DSLR or mirrorless models and the camera/lens combination has a tendency to feel rather front heavy.

Sigma 40mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art

For testing purposes, the Sigma 40mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art was predominantly paired up with Canon’s 50-million-pixel EOS 5DS R

In terms of appearance, the lens conforms to many other Sigma’s Art primes. The barrel widens just beyond the lens mount to a large, thinly ribbed rubberised focus ring. This operates smoothly with just the right level of resistance. You can get from one end of its focus distance range to the other with just over a quarter turn, and though it’s not impossible to shoot with it single handedly, you’ll find that you’re very reliant on your left hand to distribute the weight of the lens and offer some additional support.

Sigma 40mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art

The rubber texture of the lens hood is susceptible to getting marked and picking up dust

The AF/MF switch on the side of the barrel is well positioned and nicely profiled. It can be easily flicked with your thumb and the focus distance window on top clearly displays its information in feet and meters. To ensure it meets the demands of professionals and those who don’t get put-off by adverse weather conditions, it also features a dust-and splash-proof structure with seals at the mount connection, manual focus ring, zoom ring, and cover connection. No issues were encountered when it was tested in persistent drizzle, so users can be confident it won’t get damaged when wet.

Sigma 40mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art

The petal-shaped lens hood has a lock to prevent it getting dropped. You’re required to hold the button and twist the hood to release it. The hood also locks when it’s reversed

The lens also comes supplied with a new hood with a lock. It’s the bayonet type and secures with a 90-degree twist, but can’t be removed until a small release button is depressed. The hood has a strip of rubberized texture to make it easier to grip too, but I did find that this is prone to getting marked and is a magnet for dirt.

  1. 1. Sigma 40mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art review: Introduction
  2. 2. Sigma 40mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art review: Features
  3. 3. Sigma 40mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art review: Build & Handling
  4. 4. Sigma 40mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art review: Image Quality
  5. 5. Sigma 40mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art review: Resolution, shading and curvilinear distortion
  6. 6. Sigma 40mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art review: Verdict
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