Opinions? Sigma 70-300mm for Canon: F4-5.6 DG APO Macro

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by sonikin, Dec 20, 2009.

  1. sonikin

    sonikin TPF Noob!

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  2. jman6785

    jman6785 TPF Noob!

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    also listening..
     
  3. LuckySo-n-So

    LuckySo-n-So TPF Noob!

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    I don't have the APO version, but make sure you have lots of light. A whole lot of light.
     
  4. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    For a budget telephoto its a decent lens. The APO edition makes for a sharper image in the 200-300mm range, though it still tends to soften in that range. For its price point I rather like it and its older nonAPO edtion was the lens I used for some time.

    I personally found that a good solid support (tripod - a cheap one will do if you have your hand on the setup when taking shots --- or a beanbag if you are low down) was essential and made a very noticabale improvment to the quality of images one was able to capture when using the lens at the longer focal lengths.

    In addition its function as a macro lens (even though not true macro) is quite impressive and it gives some good results - subjects like flowers (and similar sized objects) are great with this lens and its long focal length gives it a good background blur.

    Like I said there are better lenses on the market, but they will all cost you more.
     
  5. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    That depends on what you are expecting to get out of it.
    As with most 70-300mm lenses, it's a cheap consumer level lens...probably not as good as your 18-55mm 'kit' lens. With the long focal length and smallish max aperture, it will struggle in lower light situations.

    There are, of course, much better options...but they will be much more expensive. So unless you are willing to spend at at least 3x times as much, you aren't going to find anything that is a whole lot better.
    As long as you don't try to push it's limits, it's probably a decent lens.
     
  6. sonikin

    sonikin TPF Noob!

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    Thanks for the replies.

    Let's shift this conversation to what would rather be a good option for a lens of about that focal range, macro capable or not (a nice bonus though). But let's not think extravagant and suggest 2,000$+ lenses.
     
  7. Green Li

    Green Li TPF Noob!

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    Let's face it, it's a cheap lens, but it gives you good zoom range.
    Other thing to consider:
    * Sharpness is far from perfect, but decent
    * Motor is slow
    * Lens tend to hunt a lot when light is dim
    * Barrel not only extends when zooming but also rotates - problem with polarizers
    * I don't really like the bokeh of this lens but that's subjective

    Despite all of the above, it's a good starter telephoto lens.

    Hope this helps.
     
  8. sonikin

    sonikin TPF Noob!

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    so what would be the next lens up the ladder from the Sigma?
     
  9. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I think the next step up from the group of cheap 70-300mm lenses, would be the Canon 70-300mm IS. While the Image Stabilizer does help quite a bit with a lens like this, I believe it also has an upgraded design which makes it a better lens, IS or not.

    There is the Canon EF 100-400mm L IS. It's a very big, heavy lens but has very good image quality. It's still 'slow', having a max aperture of F4-5.6 but it's certainly much better than those 70-300mm lenses.

    Then there are the 70-200mm lenses. Canon has four models, all with L classification.
    70-200mm F4 L
    70-200mm F4 L IS
    70-200mm F2.8 L
    70-200mm F2.8 L IS
    All four are fantastic lenses. The F2.8 models work pretty well with Tele Converters, so you could add something like the 1.4X TC to have more range.
    Sigma & Tamron also have 70-200mm F2.8 lenses. They are pretty good, but not quite as good as the Canon models. They are about half the price though.

    After that, to step up you probably need to look at prime lenses. Canon has 200mm, 300mm, 400mm, 500mm and 600mm lenses that are fantastic but fairly expensive.
     
  10. TJ K

    TJ K No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    After those primes he might want something like this but it might need like a 2x TC:lol:
     
  11. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I'm waiting on that one for the EF version, so I don't have to use an FD to EF adapter. ;)
     
  12. sonikin

    sonikin TPF Noob!

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    Thanks TJ K for you insight. I've heard from many people though to stay away from Canon's non-L lenses, for image quality reasons, and that third party lenses of this prie bracket from Sigma and Tameron are better.
     

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