Sigma has announced the 50mm F1.2 DG DN Art lens for full-frame Sony E and L mount mirrorless cameras at an impressive price! With a bright F1.2 aperture, this will be of particular interest for those that shoot in low-light, or want to create subject separation.

The 50mm lens, aka nifty fifty, is a classic format for portrait, documentary and general photography, and the focal length is roughly comparable to the human eye. This helps to generate very natural-looking images.

Whatever camera you buy, it’s important to get a lens that does your camera body justice. A cheap lens may seem a good way of saving money, but you will pay the price in the long run as it will undermine the quality of your images.

Sigma 50mm F1.2 DG DN | Art product shot
The new 50mm F1.2 DG DN | Art lens. Credit: Sigma

Deciding on a ‘nifty fifty’ lens has just got that much harder, with Sigma announcing the full-frame 50mm F1.2 DG DN | Art lens for Sony E-mount and L-mount at a very keen price – just £1299 (GBP).

Price wise, its nearest competitor is the Sony FE 50mm F1.2 GM (£1999), with comparably fast glass from Canon, Nikon and Panasonic costing significantly over £2000.

Sample image by Takashi Shikano
ILCE-7RM4 · f/1.2 · 1/250s · 50mm · ISO100

As well as getting competitors sweating on the pricing front, this is also the first Sigma lens with a 13 rounded diaphragm blade design. The aperture maintains its circular shape when shooting wide open at f/1.2, which delivers impressive background separation and ‘pleasingly round bokeh balls,’ according to the company.

Sample image by Nick Vrona
ILCE-7M4 · f/1.2 · 1/50s · 50mm · ISO320

A floating focus system is also said to improve the lens’s short-range performance and deliver high optical quality throughout the focusing range. For video shooters, focus shift has been minimised for more natural looking footage.

Sigma 50mm F1.2 DG DN | Art at a glance

  • Lens construction: 17 elements in 12 groups (4 aspherical elements)
  • Inner focus system
  • HLA (High-response Linear Actuator)
  • Compatible with AF assist (for Sony E-mount only)
  • Water and Oil Repellent Coating (front element)
  • Aperture ring and lock/click switch
  • 72mm filter size

In addition, the lens is relatively compact, being 108mm long and weighing 745g. The floating focusing system uses dual HLA (High-response Linear Actuator) motors, which reduce its size without compromising performance.

Sample image by Meg Loeks
SIGMA fp L · f/1.2 · 1/200s · 50mm · ISO320

Each glass element has been made smaller, too, which all adds up to a 30% reduction in weight compared to the heavier Sigma 35mm F1.2 DG DN | Art.

In addition to a dust and splash resistant structure, the front element of the lens features a water and oil-repellent coating. The Sigma 50mm F1.2 DG DN | Art is available from the 18th of April and a reminder of the knockout price again – £1299.

Sample image by Takashi Shikano
ILCE-7RM4 · f/1.6 · 1/8000s · 50mm · ISO100

We will publish our review as soon as we can, but this very competitively priced new lens is already getting us excited, and is likely to be high on the list of potential fab fifties for portraits, street and documentary fans.

Further reading
The best lenses for portrait photography
Best lens for street photography
Sigma 85mm F1.4 DG DN Art Review