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Sigma takes on Canon with image-stabilized 24-105mm f4 lens

The new lens, part of Sigma's high-end "art" product line, will ship in November, but its true competitiveness won't be known until Sigma reveals its price.

Sigma's 24-105mm F4 DG OS HSM with its petal-shaped lens hood.
Sigma's 24-105mm F4 DG OS HSM with its petal-shaped lens hood.

Directly challenging a widely used Canon general-purpose zoom, Sigma announced a new image-stabilized 24-105mm f4 lens Tuesday night that becomes the newest member of its "art" lens category.

Sigma's 24-105mm F4 DG OS HSM has the same focal-length range and aperture as Canon's EF 24-105mm f/4L IS, but we'll have to wait until Sigma releases pricing information to find out just how fiercely it'll compete. It also will take on Nikon's AF-S Nikkor 24-120mm f/4G ED VR, which extends farther into the telephoto range.

It'll be available in November, Sigma said, and will ship with support for Canon, Nikon, Sony, and Sigma cameras.

The new lens is hefty, with a weight of 885g (31.2 ounces), but Sigma promises top-notch image quality, in part through use of super-low dispersion glass among its 19 elements. High-end glass like that can help cut chromatic aberration -- the colored fringes around high-contrast edges, especially toward the edges of the frame. But it's not yet clear how well Sigma's contender will fare against Canon's 24-105mm, which suffers from significant barrel distortion.

Sigma's new lens takes an 82mm filter, employs a hypersonic motor for fast and quiet autofocus, uses optical stabilization to counteract camera shake, has a minimum focusing distance of 45cm (17.7 inches), uses a nine-blade aperture, and closes down to f22.

Sigma's 24-105mm F4 DG OS HSM
Sigma's 24-105mm F4 DG OS HSM Sigma