What is your opinion on Sigma lenses for amateur

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by Holland, Dec 20, 2004.

  1. Holland

    Holland TPF Noob!

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    I'm in the market for picking up a new AF zoom lens. I currently only own Nikkors, but I was wondering if I would be just as happy with a Sigma brand. I would like to stay under $200 and no more than 200mm or 300mm.

    Whenever I visit the local Wolf camera store, they usually try to push their in-house brand, Quantaray. I've been told to avoid those.

    What are your opinions?
     
  2. Digital Matt

    Digital Matt alter ego: Analog Matt

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    I don't know what you are looking for in terms of quality, but for under $200, it's not going to be a great lens, no matter if it's Nikon or Sigma, or whoever.
     
  3. Bokeh

    Bokeh TPF Noob!

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    Hi. Sigma makes good lenses, esp. for the price. You can spend $100 on a sigma lens or $600. From what I gather they typically "target" a Canon lens to compete with. It's typically about 2/3 the price and about 3/4 the quality.

    I bought a 70-200 F4 Sigma a long time ago. I spent $100 on it. Honestly? That lens isn't bad AT ALL. It gives good bokeh, the colors are GREAT, good contrast etc. The only thing is, it autofocuses like a tortoise and it's absolutely horrific in anything but outdoor light. Typically, indoors it won't even focus most of the time unless there's just tons of light. But outdoors or with great lighting, it's not bad at all, again, the colors are great on it. For indoor use I mainly use primes now, and Canon because of the fast focusing and USM.
     
  4. Ant

    Ant TPF Noob!

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    I hear a lot about the superiority of Nikon or Canon lenses over other brands, but from what I can tell that superiority only really applies with lenses above about $1500.

    If you're buying a lens for less than that then Sigma is a very good choice and their lenses in that price range stack up very well against the Nikons and Canons.
     
  5. Bokeh

    Bokeh TPF Noob!

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    That is, most definitely, incorrect. If you read pretty much any reviews of lenses, you'll see realize that statement is wrong.

    However, the difference in price is usually not close to the difference in quality. But if you need the extra qaulity, or do photography for a living, you'll probably want every extra ounce of quality.
     
  6. DocFrankenstein

    DocFrankenstein Clinically Insane?

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    You can't generalize it like that. You have to compare it lens by lens.

    IE: If I want a mid range fast zoom, do I go with canon sigma or tamron?

    Canon 24-70 f/2.8 L - 1200$
    Huge and heavy. Best quality. Expensive. A bit more expensive. Isn't sucsceptible to flare.

    Tamron 28-75 f/2.8 EX DR APO something something... 350 bucks
    Intelligently designed lens with a ton of aspherical elements in it, which work. Fast AF, small size, you won't nocite the difference in quality.

    Look at sigma too...

    Here you have a case where Tamron is clearly more competitive than "the best" Canon lens, at 1/4 the price.

    I know I'd go with the tamron in this case.
     
  7. Bokeh

    Bokeh TPF Noob!

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    Doc, I'm not sure who you're replying to...
     
  8. Ant

    Ant TPF Noob!

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    I totally disagree. I've got a Nikon 70-300mm G lens and, although not bad for the price I'd put an equivalent Sigma or Tamron up against it any day and I know a few people who claim that the Sigma 18-125mm DC lens is every bit as good as the highly vaunted Nikon 18-70mm DX....for less money and greater zoom range.

    I Agree with that, but people tend to generalize with lenses all the time by claiming that Nikon or Canon are better, period. I simply don't subscribe to this. If you've got an unlimited amount of money and want to buy the absolute best then you'll probably end up with a Nikon or a Canon, but if you're on a limited budget then I don't think there's any clear difference in quality between Nikon, Canon or Sigma. As you say, you need to take it on a lens by lens basis.
     
  9. Bokeh

    Bokeh TPF Noob!

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    Ant, you completely misread my post. You took me to say that no sigma lenses are better than Canon/Nikon, but if you look at the post, this is the part I'm disagreeing with:

    That, is completely untrue. Certainly there are lenses Canon makes below $1500 that are superior to Sigma, Tamron etc. "I know a few people who think..." isn't a way to compare lenses. Looking at various graphs, reading reviews by reputable experts and taking shots yourself is the way to compare lenses.

    I don't either; in fact, I don't know who would. I've never seen anyone say "All Cannons are better than all Sigma." that would be crazy. Comparing two "competing" lenses of both brand however ,usually the Canon's are better, but more expensive; it's just in what you want and can afford.
     
  10. Holland

    Holland TPF Noob!

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    So what would be an acceptable budget? Should I consider a used lens to keep the price down?

    I'm not a Pro, just a guy who likes to take shots of his kids on the weekends.
     
  11. DocFrankenstein

    DocFrankenstein Clinically Insane?

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    To you.
     
  12. motcon

    motcon TPF Noob!

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