A Wedding and Commercial Portrait photographer’s use of the Sigma MC-11 and 35/1.4 Art lens
About me and my use of Sony cameras
I primarily use Sony cameras for my professional work these days; a mix of A7 cameras as each one handles the same but gives me different sensor options. When I first got my Sony cameras there were a handful of zoom lenses and couple of prime lenses, though one thing that I liked about the Sony cameras was the ability to use any other lens ever made (pretty much). Some people have called the Sony e-mount an almost universal mount. One great advance came when several companies released EF-E mount adapters that supported AF. This may seem like witchcraft and it is a little bit. One problem with these adapters is that they use the phase detect sensors on the cameras. – which is great if your camera has phase detect sensors.. Not so good if not. Another disadvantage is that they lose some of the great features of Sony’s AF. Namely Face detection and eye-focus. As someone who shoots a lot of people then this feature has truly revolutionised how I shoot. No need to constantly move focus points around. The camera just locks on the nearest eye and voila!
I’m a wedding and commercial portrait photographer based in the rural county of Dorset. I’ve been a professional photographer for over 12 years now and run a studio based in Blandford Dorset.
SIGMA’s revolutionary MC-11 adapter
When I first saw the MC-11 converter I knew this could be a real game changer for how I work. To open up the whole of the ART lens range (also the Sports and Contemporary lineup too) meant the gaps in the Sony lineup were gone! Also it meant I could re-use my existing lenses to work perfectly on my Sony cameras and have the best of both worlds! Sigma glass and Sony sensors!
The build quality is sublime.. Flocking on the inside to stop reflections.. I’ve not seen any reflections of flare, even shooting into sunlight.. Unlike with other adapters I’ve used. I also love the fact that I can update the firmware (already updated once!).
I love the 35mm focal length and had been looking at adding the Sony 35/1.4 lens to my setup, the 35/2.8 Sony lens I had discounted due to the 2.8 aperture. However I’d heard great things about the SIGMA 35/1.4 ART lens so when I got a chance to try this out with the MC-11 I couldn’t wait.
I was not disappointed. This lens is great from wide open and gets sharper across the frame from f/2. The ability to track eyes in portraits makes getting the eyes in focus so easy! The first thing I did was arrange a test shoot with a beautiful model friend of mine to see how it would work! See the photos to see how well it performs! I also took it along to some commercial food and drink photoshoots as I love the natural light and shallow depth of field for this kind of work. The SIGMA 35/1.4 ART lets me realise this!
I’ve also taken this combination along to some weddings too, nothing is a greater test of reliability and accuracy. Once again it’s performed flawlessly. I love being able to nail to focus on a portrait of the bride or the bridesmaids or a small child just by pressing a button.
Conclusion – Who’s the MC-11 for?
This MC-11 in combination with SIGMA 35mm, 50mm, 18-35mm ART and other lenses is going to be a great option for both Sony shooters and great for clients! The MC-11 is going to be the go-to adapter for Sony shooters, the build quality is as good or better than the Metabones adapter and loads better than the Commlite and Fotodiox ones I’ve had.
Are there any downsides? Not really no – of course people are going to ask have I tried it with other EF mount lenses – officially not supported of course.. But people will try it! Well I’ve tried 24 in an upcoming video test in conjunction with the awesome Castle Cameras and I also tried 6 more Sigma lenses at a show from the wonderfully friendly Sigma staff too. Although you don’t get the benefit of the class leading eye/face detection with the un-supported lenses you do get good performance in the whole – see my upcoming video for more details though 🙂
If you’re a Sony shooter then you need this adapter in your life. As well as the Sigma35mm and Sigma 50mm ART lenses being fabulous you also open up a whole range of lenses that means you have a genuine choice to Zeiss and Sony lenses! Viva la MC-11!
Where to buy?
I’d recommend my good friends at Castle Cameras: