Sigma announces 16mm F1.4 DC DN | Contemporary lens

Japanese lens specialist Sigma has introduced a new wide-angle prime lens for mirrorless users, the 16mm F1.4 DC DN | Contemporary.

Although Sigma has focused more on its acclaimed Art line of lenses in recent years, the company claims the new lens has image quality that rivals that of the Art series.

Available for users of Micro Four Thirds and Sony E-mount lines, the lens is set to be compatible with a range of recent arrivals in both stables, such as the Sony A6500 and Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark III, as well as older models like the Panasonic G7

Sigma claims this is the world’s first interchangeable lens for mirrorless Sony E-mount cameras in the APS-C format to offer a 24mm focal length (in 35mm terms) and an f/1.4 aperture. 

On a Micro Four Thirds camera, such as the Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark II, the effective focal length of the lens is doubled to 32mm, which potentially makes it a good option for street photography, reportage and environmental portraiture.

Read more: Samyang AF 35mm F1.4 FE announced

The lens has been designed with 16 elements spread across 13 separate groups, with three FLD glass elements, two SLD glass elements and two moulded glass aspherical elements among these to minimise aberrations. 

A stepping motor is said to provide smooth autofocus performance during video recording, its design compatible with Sony's recent Fast Hybrid AF technology. Other features include a nine-bladed rounded diaphragm and protection against dust and splashes. It will also ship with a petal-type lens hood (below) as standard.

The lens hood features a rubber construction and a non-slip groove

The lens hood features a rubber construction and a non-slip groove

The lens is the second Contemporary f/1.4 prime optic intended for mirrorless users, following the 30mm F1.4 DC DN | Contemporary that arrived last year. Sigma has also today announced that the company has plans to add a telephoto optic to the same series.

Sigma 16mm F1.4 DC DN Contemporary price and availability

Sigma has confirmed a suggested retail price of £449.99 for the lens in the UK, and also states that the lens will be available at the start of December. Pricing in other territories has not yet been disclosed, although the lens is currently on sale at one US retailer for $449.00.

Read more: Sigma Interview: "Shifting our brand to a more premium range was definitely a good move"

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Matt Golowczynski

The former editor of Digital Camera World, "Matt G" has spent the bulk of his career working in or reporting on the photographic industry. For two and a half years he worked in the trade side of the business with Jessops and Wex, serving as content marketing manager for the latter. 

Switching streams he also spent five years as a journalist, where he served as technical writer and technical editor for What Digital Camera before joining DCW, taking on assignments as a freelance writer and photographer in his own right. He currently works for SmartFrame, a specialist in image-streaming technology and protection.