2018 was a big year for big lenses. This is particularly true for Sigma which released monster lenses—including the 40mm f/1.4, 105mm, and 60-600mm—to solidify Sigma’s Art, contemporary and Sports lens series. Sigma took a break from releasing tons of monstrous lenses to create something perfect, and relatively small: the Sigma 56mm f/1.4 Contemporary Lens.

This portable Sigma lens can easily be described in one word, “smooth.” Its stepping motor gives it quick and silent autofocus, which makes it a good option for video and portrait photography. Our videographer, Dominick, did a photo shoot with a friend of his using only this lens paired with the Sony a6000. He was thoroughly impressed with the hair-splitting focus, even at f/1.4. He also shot several clips (included in this video) to see how well it maintained focus with the a6000 even in low light.

The Sigma 56mm has a wide aperture of 1.4 for perfect bokeh and it’s 56mm focal length makes it equivalent to an 84mm in full frame. But, compared to the 85mm f/1.4 lens, the 56mm is a fourth of the weight, a third of the price and half the size. It also has 10 elements in 6 groups; the SLD glass elements correct axial color aberration and reduce color fringing. It also features 9 rounded diaphragm blades and rubber sealing at the mount, making it both dust and splash-proof.

The Sigma 56mm f/1.4 lens is small, portable and lightweight, but still incorporates a large grip that makes focusing easy and comfortable. It boasts the title of the smallest mid-tele lens in class weighing in at only 280g or 9.9oz.

At the end of the day, this lens is a good investment for portrait photographers using the Sony a6000 series. It’s also incredibly affordable—only $479 at Focus camera—which is a solid price for any photographer’s budget. If you have this lens, we’d love to hear what you think of it so far.

Sample images with Sony a6000 and Sigma 56mm f/1.4 Contemporary lens


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