Sigma or Tamron?

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by klotzishere20, Jan 3, 2010.

  1. klotzishere20

    klotzishere20 TPF Noob!

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    Iv'e been wanting to purchase a Canon telephoto lens either the 300 or 400 2.8 but I just cant bring myself to fork out that much money. I would if it was significantly better... Does anyone have any experience on Tamron or Sigmas compared to the Canons? How much better is the Canon than the Sigma or Tamrons. Also the IS feature on canons, A) Is there a feature like that on Tamrons or Sigmas. B) Does it really help that much? Is it a necessity?
     
  2. sinjans

    sinjans TPF Noob!

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    I f you want the most info you can get you can try the sites search engine. I have been pondering myself on the sigma vs canon 70-200. After extensive reading the 15+ pages of results i have decided that this would be a lens that i will always have and one will always regret not getting the best. So i am saving my money for the canon. Try the search engine and you will make your decision faster. Cheers
     
  3. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    on the 300mm f2.8 the IS feature is most certainly a very good thing to have when handholding. If you are shooting from atripod or beanbag the whole time then having IS (or OS in sigma talk) its not a concern.
    As for comparisons with other longer lenses I would say the Canon primes beat the sigma or tramron offerings. Further sigma's own 300mm f2.8 is beating in image quality by their 120-300mm f2.8 zoom lens (though I hasten to add that sadly sigma does appear to have quality control problems with that lens and so you do have to test it first to make sure you get a good copy).

    Honestly I know very much how you feel about prices on the 300mm f2.8 and 400mm f2.8 lens options from canon. My advice would be that if you need a longer lens I would look to options in the cheaper bracket ( things like the 300mm f4; 400mm f5.6, or even a 100-400mm) for the now and then save longer for the heavier and wider aperture glass. The only bonus of this method is that if you go for the cheaper canon glass now you can sell it at decent rate when it comes time to upgrade (since canon L grade lenses tend to keep their market value quite well when sold on second hand)

    you might also find the reviews on the following site helpfull:
    http://www.juzaphoto.com/eng/articles.htm
     
  4. Montana

    Montana TPF Noob!

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    If you are seeking the highest image quality at that focal length, then Canon is the best bet of the three. If you can live with less image quality, try one of the others. Can you sacrifice some speed and step down to the f/4 / f/5.6 versions? Canon's 300 2.8 and 400 2.8 lenses are absolutely awesome. Both are very near the top of Canon's sharpest offerings.

    But it seems you have answered your own dilema, if you cannot fork out the cash then look to Sigma or elsewhere.


    EDIT~ Overread types faster than I do. LOL
     
  5. klotzishere20

    klotzishere20 TPF Noob!

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    I guess my question is how much better is the canon than the sigma or tamron
     
  6. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    My money would be on the Canon 400/2.8 over either a Sigma or Tamron of comparable specification. I'm not really sure these days what Sigma or Tamron have in the 400mm range; Tamron used to make a 400mm f/3.5 manual focusing lens with internal focusing in the Adaptall-II mount. I know Sigma and Tamron both currently manufacture 300mm f/2.8 lenses, which I have not owned. In the 1980's I owned a Tamron 30mm f/2.8 SP Adaptall-II lens with matching 1.4x converter designed expressly for that lens--it was quite good, but not as good as a Nikon of Canon 300/2.8.

    How much money are you thinking? Canon EF 400/2.8 lenses are available used for around $3,250 in walk-in stores across the USA (not at the "big" web sites),which to me seems like a good deal.

    IS is nice for many things; I think it's helpful, but it doesn't stop subject motion blur,so shutter speeds needed to freeze moving subjects are still the same, but stabilization does allow you to pan steadily at slower speeds than possible by hand. If you are going to be shooting slow-moving subjects or larger animals, I'd consider an older Nikon 300/2.8 AiS + Canon adapter for $900 as a decent option, or the Tamron 400/3.5 or Nikon 400 f/3.5 ED-IF for around $1000 as another option. Both of those lenses are easy to focus by hand and eye outdoors. The Nikon is particularly interesting, since a very good,matching TC-300 or TC-301 is available, and it converts the 400/3.5 to an 800mm with a quality level that is unmatched by most other prime lens + TC converter combos, since the lens and converter were designed with one another in mind a number of years ago.

    You might be amazed at how the old-style Internal Focusing 300 and 400mm manual focusing lenses actually focus--better, and easier than AF lenses do in when flipped to manual focusing mode. I know you're a relatively new d-slr shooter, so do a bit of research to find out more as needed--we're talking about 7 to 13 pound lenses, roughly...
     
  7. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    The best answer you can get is to try renting each lens (or seeing if there is a local shop which will get them in for you to try or a local photography club where you might find members who will let you have a look). At the price points of the 400mm f2.8 and 300mm f2.8 the cost for renting each for a few days is not very much compared to the overall cost of each lens. And the actual difference (espeacilly the weight) will be far easier to understand in a real world context than through the internet.

    If you are considering the lower ends of the market I would say the Sigma 120-300mm f2.8 is about your best bet from their offerings = provided you get a good copy this lens can even work well with a 1.4teleconverter. (the canon f2.8 lenses listed above can work very well with a 1.4Teleconverter and will even work well with a 2*teleconverter)
     
  8. klotzishere20

    klotzishere20 TPF Noob!

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    Thx for the info. I didnt know used lenses went that cheap at camera stores. Now I have to make a few phone calls tomarrow.
     
  9. Antithesis

    Antithesis No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    At the price point of any worthwhile 300mm f2.8 (with AF anyways), your going to be getting close enough to a used first generation Canon 300 F2.8L non-IS to justify the purchase IMO. Not quite as sharp as the IS version from what I've read, but certainly a strong lens.

    At 400mm, neither Sigma or Tamron have a lens with a F2.8 image from what I know of. I think there may be a Tamron 400mm f5.6, but I haven't heard anything good about it. I figure if your able to save up a couple grand for a lens, you might as well save a little more and go for quality and get what you really want. Buyers remorse after that large of an expense is no fun.
     
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2010

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