Sigma 28-70mm f/2.8 DG DN Contemporary - Review / Test Report
Lens Reviews - Sony Alpha (Full Format)

Review by Klaus Schroiff, published August 2023


Having multiple lens grades to choose from is great from a consumer perspective. Sony knows this as well and is offering no less than three of them (GM, G & consumer). However, Sony isn't alone with this, even within the E-mount ecosystem. Sigma is doing something similar with their ART, SPORTS and Contemporary lineup. Interestingly, they even offer different variations of the same lens TYPE here and there. They've got the Sigma 24-70mm f/2.8 DG DN ART alongside the Sigma 28-70mm f/2.8 DG DN Contemporary - that's quite a unique approach to all this. And today, we'll have a look at the latter. You may think that these lenses should be quite similar, but the 28-70mm f/2.8 is indeed a very different breed in many aspects beyond just these 4mm that got missing along the way at the wide end. There is, of course, the price tag of around $800USD/850EUR - that's roughly 25% less than for the 24-70mm f/2.8 ART. However, the most significant difference is the size & weight. The 28-70mm f/2.8 comes in at just 470g vs 830g, and it's also noticeably shorter and less "fat" in diameter. Thus you may wonder with how much quality penalty we have to deal with here. Let's see.

In terms of build quality, you won't really know that this is a "lesser grade" lens. The lens barrel is made of high-quality TSC (Thermally Stable Composite) plastics based on a metal mount. It's an extending zoom design, so the length increases when zooming out toward the long end of the range. The zoom and aperture rings turn smoothly. There is an MF/AF switch but no zoom lock switch and no AFL button like on the ART lens. Another aspect where cost-cutting is more obvious is the dust- and splash sealing which is applied to the mount only. Nano coating on the front element is used to repel water drops and oil. A petal-shaped lens hood is provided. Like all other Sigma lenses, it's still made in Japan.

The Sigma 28-70mm f/2.8 DN DG Contemporary uses a stepping AF motor which is both fast and essentially silent. As usual, manual focusing works "by wire," so you are driving the AF motor when turning the focus ring. An image stabilizer has not been implemented.

Optical construction16 elements in 12 groups, inc. 2x FLD, 2x SLD & 3x Aspherical elements
Number of aperture blades9 (rounded)
min. focus distance0.19-0.3m (max. magnification 1:3.3(W) – 1:4.6(T))
Filter sizeφ67mm
Hoodpetal-shaped (bayonet mount, supplied)
Focus-breathing compensationnot supported
Other featuresdust- and moisture-resistant (mount only)

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