Buying the Sigma 50mm f1.4 ART or Canon 50mm f1.2L?

In a sharp break from the normal philosophical-leaning posts on this blog, I want to talk about some camera gear.

I've been long overdue for an upgrade to my 50mm lens. Over the past 3-4 years, I've had this love affair with my 85mm lens and haven't used my Canon 50mm f1.4 enough to justify an upgrade.

Now is the time for an upgrade, and I'm forced to make the choice between the near 15-year-old Canon f1.2L 50mm lens and the larger/heavier and $600-cheaper Sigma 50mm f1.4 ART lens.

The choice of the actual Canon branded lens that has an additional 1/3rd stop in the aperture department seems to be the obvious choice, but after looking into the comparisons, the Sigma lens seems to be very superior when it comes to the lens distortion and sharpness. The only downside I've found to the Sigma is that it's about an inch longer than the Canon and it's about half a pound heavier.

Both lenses have fast focusing (for sub f2.0 lenses) and weather sealing.

For additional sharpness and less lens distortion at a $600 cheaper price tag, I decided to go with the Sigma.

The only argument I heard about why the Canon 50mm f1.2L was better was that, despite it being a much less sharp lens, it "just produces a better portrait."

I'm not really sure what that means and I haven't been able to find anyone who compares this made up lens feature. For me, I'll take the best available tool and find a way to make beautiful portraits with it.

Sigma 50mm F1.4 lens review should be coming soon!