13th September 2021, Singapore – I was planning to go downtown to review the Sigma 35mm F2 DG DN (C) & do my usual street photography – then an idea struck me. There’s a private Farm who had extended their invitation to me & our group to visit them so I decided to review the Sigma 35mm F2 DG DN (C) via a farm visit instead.
This review also doubles up as a “Part 3” to the “i” Series lenses that I had reviewed (or still reviewing). We had reviewed the 45mm F2.8, 65mm F2 and now the 35mm F2. (We will be doing the 24mm F3.5 soon too while waiting for the 90mm F2.8). These new DG DN lenses are designed to be extremely tough with its “mostly” metal construction, the retro yet elegant design & lastly compact and small despite the bigger aperture. Designated under Sigma’s popular Contemporary (C) line of lenses, these DG DN lenses had been widely touted that it is much more premium than the earlier (C) lenses and the overall build & image quality are really closer to Sigma’s Top-of-the-Line ART (A) line lenses.
The Sigma 35mm F2 DG DN (C) – like its “brothers”, are super compact. I was issued the Sony E mount which measures only 70mm × 67.4mm (the L Mount version is slightly shorter) and weights only a mere 325gm. For a F2 lens, this is considered very light by most standards. As mentioned earlier, the lens barrel is made from a mix of TSC, Aluminum and even the lens hood (LH636-01) is made from metal too.
The Design is (expectedly) similar to the other 3, with a selectable aperture ring, an oversized MF/AF switch and a metal focusing ring, which had proven to be very functionable with great ergonomics being thought out for handling. I like the rounded hump on the MF/AF switch which was very easy to locate while keeping my eye on the viewfinder, it is also very comfy to the touch.
Inside the lens, the optics are arranged in 10 elements in 9 groups including 1 SLD glass and 3 aspherical glass that helps a lot on cutting flares and ghosting while rendering incredible sharpness. The aperture are made from 9 rounded blades that opens from F2 to F22 which is pretty standard. The minimum focusing distance is a mere 27cm and has a magnification ratio of 1:5.7 , very very decent in my view.
The front of the lens takes 58mm circular screw-on filters which is common. Personally I like the metal lens hood a lot. Sigma claimed that it is a magnetic lens hood, but you still have to screw-click this hood. Still I like it cos when I sling my camera to a side and walking on the street, those senseless people who expect you to give way to them or tried to walk straight onto you while walking past you will be sure to walk away with a bruise or a cut, thanks to the threaded grip design on the metal hood. People should learn to walk on the street and avoid photographers’ cameras – Sigma thanks for this.
While many people cannot really get along with 35mm and opted for 50mm or 24mm, the 35mm range is one of my favorite as it is very good for framing street subjects, the F2 aperture allows quick focusing in low light condition and the bokeh from this 35mm is awesome too.
Instead of shooting street photography, I brought this 35mm out to a local farm over the weekend and tried to shoot whatever I came across just with this lens. Check out my images below!
Above: The above are not your regular food chicken. These are prized pets!
Below: I am shocked that farmers here had managed to climatize Grape vines for our crazily hot Singapore.
The Sigma 35mm F2 DG DN (C) was fast in focusing and great to use for this visit. The short minimum focus distance really helps a lot for my close-ups.
The color – when the Sigma 35mm F2 was paired to my Sony a7R, both complimented
each other like a perfect match. I got great colors, lots of details, high quality and contrasty images. Really a joy to use!
35mm is also a great focal length (for me) as I always rather pick 35mm over 50mm due to the slightly wider angle of view so that I may frame both near and far away subjects easily.
After the farm visit and a quick dinner, I decided to take the Sigma 35mm F2 to Chinatown for a walk and check out the light-up for Mid Autumn Festival. The 35mm turned into a night monster easily. The F2 aperture just gave me lots of added advantage in low light.
Above: Positioned my camera on the floor and got the above shot with a slow shutter.
Below: Bumped into another Photographer (Janice) who was out cycling so took this chance to test the bokeh too.
In Summary, the Sigma 35mm F2 DG DN (C) is definitely my favorite so far after I had shot with the 45mm and 65mm. 35mm has always been an “in-between” range (between 24mm & 50mm) and it is also a very popular focal length for street photographers. The fast & silent focusing is accurate and the big aperture coupled with a close focusing distance and a high magnification ratio, this is the One lens that you need to cover a lot of genre and shooting in various situations.
Like my previous review, I strongly feel that Sigma should have given these new DG DN lenses a new naming convention rather than just designating them under the Contemporary (C) line. They are really more ART (A) then just being Contemporary (C) – pun intended.
Buying this Lens
If you are feeling adventurous & curious about this Sigma 35mm F2 DG DN (C), then you should go ahead & buy this lens. Buy from our accredited merchants for a peace of mind!
Renting this Camera/Lens – (Please check for availability first)
For those of you who wish to try out this lens before purchase, we are pleased to share that this camera & lens is probably available for rental at our appointed rental merchant:
Camera Rental Centre is Conveniently Located at:
50 South Bridge Road, CMO Building, (very near to Clarke Quay MRT)
#02-18. Singapore 058682
Reviewer: Chief Editor AL Lee
Chief Editor & Founder of Ourshutterjourney.com Worldwide and Principal Trainer at Ourshutterjourney Photography Academy. AL is a commercial photographer as well as an educator who believes in the art of digital memories. An ambassador of several photography brands, AL is well versed in many camera systems. Someone once told us AL’s man cave looks more like a camera store than a bedroom.