Sigma 28mm f/1.8 II

I recently get a copy of Sigma 28mm f/1.8 II as a replacement for the Pentax FA 31mm f/1.8 limited. Mine is the older copy with 58mm filter size and it does not do close up like the latest version. I like this older version for the smaller size, not that much bigger than my Pentax DA 35mm 1:1 limited. My copy is all plastic, which I don't mind for the inexpensive cost to get. AF is pretty fast as the focus throw is small about 1/4 to 1/8 turn. It is quite good in street shooting from day to night.

Sigma 28mm f/1.8 II next to Pentax DA 35mm f/2.8 limited

Sigma 28mm f/1.8

I only took it for a weekend trip in San Francisco China town in Clement street and later visited the ocean beach on highway 1. The maximum aperture is f/1.7 instead of f/1.8 when used on K20D.

1/13 sec, f/2.8 28mm, iso 400, 0 Ev

Sigma 28mm f/1.8

1/13 sec, f/1.7, 28mm, iso 200, 0 Ev
photo taken with Sigma 28mm f/1.8 and Pentax K20d

1/125sec, f/5.6, 28mm, iso 200, +0.3 Ev
photo taken with Sigma 28mm f/1.8 and Pentax K20d

1/320 sec, f/5.6, 28mm, iso 200, +0.3 Ev
photo taken with Sigma 28mm f/1.8 and Pentax K20d

1/6 sec, f/2.2, 28mm, iso 400, -0.7 Ev
photo taken with Sigma 28mm f/1.8 and Pentax K20d

1/30 sec, f/2.0, 28mm, iso 400, 0 Ev
photo taken with Sigma 28mm f/1.8 and Pentax K20d
Sigma 28mm f/1.8

Sigma 28mm f/1.8

Initial Impressions & Notes

It may be too early for me to give assessment to the lens as I have only managed to use this lens for once with Pentax K20D. My impressions have been on the positive side. While shooting similar scenes in a weekend with the Tamron SP 70-210mm f/3.5 adaptall-2 19AH zoom, I can find many shots with hinting of PF/CA in the Tamron 19AH zoom but none in the Sigma prime.
  • Filter size is 58mm
  • Small and lightweight
  • Focus throw too short for manual focusing. AF speed is adequate.
  • Shooting in low light have been satisfactory. AF seems capable on K20D with this lens in low lighting
  • Build is all plastic but seems sturdy and small enough for street shooting with emphasis on fast speed.
  • Though specification listed as f/1.8, I got maximum aperture of f/1.7 in Av mode
  • Wide open aperture seems usable. I only tried it once and it is too early to tell if wide open aperture has reasonable sharpness
  • Shooting in f/2.0 and f/2.2 after sunset seems very capable for nighttime shooting.
  • Flare and CA/PF seems to be non-existent in my first shooting.
  • Lens hood is decent and it can be mounted in reverse direction
  • Sharpness and color seems pleasant when I tested it in f/5.6 and f/8.0.
  • 28mm seems to do a better job for me on street scenes as compared to 35mm.



Anonymous said...


Do you have your exposure steps set to 1/2 stops? That would explain why the camera says f/1.7 when the lens is wide open. In any case, independently of what the camera says, the lens wide open is f/1.8, and that's what you'll be shooting at.

Hin Man said...

Thanks for the visit. My Ev compensation goes by 1/3 step instead of 1/2. Perhaps a wrong report from my K20D.

Unknown said...

You got me curious with this lens. Where have you found it? Could you direct me where to look.

Hin Man said...

@R-Jay, I bought it from ebay. Please note that this older lens in 28mm is different from the new one. It has a label of 28mm II and it is not the DG version of the latest digital version. Its filter size is 58mm.

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