Though not as big as CES or Photokina, CP+ is the biggest photography trade show in Japan and is another opportunity for camera and lens makers to reveal their new goods to the world. The D800 was launched there one year ago. It’s currently going on, and aside from a thousand pocket cameras with 50x zooms, there are several new lenses we would like to highlight and comment on. So here we go…
Sigma 30mm 1.4 DC
This fast prime is the latest addition to Sigma’s new “Art” lineup, which previously brought us the heralded 35mm f/1.4 that is leaving every other lens maker’s equivalent in the dust. So we don’t expect this new 30mm to be any different. The funny thing is, the original 30mm 1.4 (review here) was already a winner, expecially in terms of image sharpness at the center of the frame wide open at f/1.4. So perhaps this new version will improve in the corners. Where we would most like to see it improve though, is in auto-focus performance. Not that the original slow to lock, but that it’s just not that accurate at times. Sigma’s claim of new and better quality control is a good sign. It’s good to see them putting pressure on the other major lens makers.
Nikon 18-35mm f/3.5-4.5
This one leaves me kind of scratching my head. Yes, Nikon has come out with a range of affordable FX lenses lately (24-85VR, 70-300VR, etc), but this slow wide angle zoom at $800? Really? If you’re a Canon shooter, or undecided, you can get a 17-49L which is not only wide, but also longer, faster at f/4, and stronger with the L build quality. So how they could release a lens for . On the bright side, I’m sure it will have improved performance over the old version, and the instant manual focus override is nice for those that use it (not me).
Tokina 70-200mm f/4 FX
This new f/4 telephoto zoom from Tokina is significant because it represents the first challenge from third party lens makers to Canon’s coveted f/4 line of 70-200 lenses. Nikon just recently joined that party. And they are extremely popular with those looking for something lighter and smaller than the f/2.8 zooms, but with similar image quality and build quality. Tokina also announced a 12-28mm f/4 for crop cameras, that goes further than any ultra-wide zoom has gone before, with an equivalent range of 18-42mm. Still, we’d rather have the 10-22mm from Canon.