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New Sigma 50-150 telephoto

 
 
Robert Coe
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      09-17-2012
Has anyone here tried the new Sigma APS-C 50-150mm f/2.8 lens with image
stabilization? I have the old, unstabilized version; and until I got use of a
high-end 70-200 last year, it was one of my favorite lenses for event
photography. It's pretty sharp, and both the focus and the zoon are internal,
so it doesn't collect dust. The only serious knock on it was that its AF
wasn't particularly fast.

The new lens claims to be even sharper and to focus faster than the old one,
and it preserves the internal focus and zoom. Initial reviews have been
favorable, but that doesn't tell you much; early reviews often come from
fanboys. If it's as good as they claim, it could be a winner (assuming, of
course, that one can overlook Sigma's reputation for poor quality control). A
50-150 arguably fits into the typical APS-C lens lineup better than the 70-200
does, since so many walkaround zooms top out around 50mm.

Bob
 
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David Dyer-Bennet
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      09-17-2012
Robert Coe <(E-Mail Removed)> writes:

> A 50-150 arguably fits into the typical APS-C lens lineup better than
> the 70-200 does, since so many walkaround zooms top out around 50mm.


(Snipping the part about versions, since I don't know anything about the
changes in that lens.)

I found that the 70-200 fit me like a glove on DX. The only problem was
that, when I unexpectedly went back to FX (which is a huge win for
low-light with moderate lenses, which I do a lot of) I found myself
struggling with my telephoto reach truncated at 200mm-fov-equiv.

I've never found a satisfactory solution, either. There are even slower
zooms (f/2.8 is already a slow lens) that go to 300 or 400, and I've got
a 120-400 that's useful outdoors or in brightly lit sports arenas, but
it's not nearly as nice as having a 105-300mm-fov-equiv/2.8 in my bag.

And my shorter zooms have been 24 or 28 to 70 equivalents, so no gap.

One of the things DX taught me is that the 200mm limit on good lenses
that weren't both huge and expensive was more technological than user
preference.

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Me
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      09-17-2012
On 17/09/2012 12:46 p.m., Robert Coe wrote:
> Has anyone here tried the new Sigma APS-C 50-150mm f/2.8 lens with image
> stabilization? I have the old, unstabilized version; and until I got use of a
> high-end 70-200 last year, it was one of my favorite lenses for event
> photography. It's pretty sharp, and both the focus and the zoon are internal,
> so it doesn't collect dust. The only serious knock on it was that its AF
> wasn't particularly fast.
>
> The new lens claims to be even sharper and to focus faster than the old one,
> and it preserves the internal focus and zoom. Initial reviews have been
> favorable, but that doesn't tell you much; early reviews often come from
> fanboys. If it's as good as they claim, it could be a winner (assuming, of
> course, that one can overlook Sigma's reputation for poor quality control). A
> 50-150 arguably fits into the typical APS-C lens lineup better than the 70-200
> does, since so many walkaround zooms top out around 50mm.
>

The 50-150 f2.8 OS doesn't make sense:

It weighs 95% as much as 70-200 f2.8 Fx zooms.
It costs about 75% as much as the Sigma 70-200 f2.8 OS.
Resale value will be poor, as it's a Sigma, and also it's an Aps-c
format lens in the quality/price range where people think about the
possibility of changing to 35mm format in the future. At $1,000 (street
price) it's way over-priced for what it is.
There are good APS-c wide zooms which top out in the 70-85mm focal
length range if you really don't want to "lose" the 50-70mm range.
The 50-70mm range is usually able to be compensated for by "zooming with
your feet" if you need to frame everything perfectly ex-camera.
If you also need "fast" at about 50mm, then you can get a very
inexpensive 50mm f1.8.
The weight of this lens (and the 70-200 f2.8s) is substantial, as you'll
know if you used the 70-200 you tried for long enough.
I hope I've put you off - you don't need a review of the lens optical
performance - there's enough information to be gleaned from specs and
pricing to show that even if it performs well, it's at best a poor
solution to a problem which doesn't exist.

 
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PeterN
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      09-17-2012
On 9/17/2012 2:02 PM, David Dyer-Bennet wrote:
> Robert Coe <(E-Mail Removed)> writes:
>snip>



> One of the things DX taught me is that the 200mm limit on good lenses
> that weren't both huge and expensive was more technological than user
> preference.
>

My 80-400 Nikon is sharp and clear. The only issue sis very slow focus.

--
Peter
 
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PeterN
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      09-17-2012
On 9/17/2012 6:49 PM, Savageduck wrote:
> On 2012-09-17 15:38:02 -0700, PeterN <(E-Mail Removed)> said:
>
>> On 9/17/2012 2:02 PM, David Dyer-Bennet wrote:
>>> Robert Coe <(E-Mail Removed)> writes:
>>> snip>

>>
>>
>>> One of the things DX taught me is that the 200mm limit on good lenses
>>> that weren't both huge and expensive was more technological than user
>>> preference.
>>>

>> My 80-400 Nikon is sharp and clear. The only issue sis very slow focus.

>
> You can say that again!
> ...and low light performance is abysmal.
>
> If you have good light and little need for fast focus it is great.
>


Yup!
I tried it on a borrowed D4. the focusing speed was much faster. If it
only was AF-S......

--
Peter
 
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Robert Coe
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      09-18-2012
On Tue, 18 Sep 2012 09:04:50 +1200, Me <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
: On 17/09/2012 12:46 p.m., Robert Coe wrote:
: > Has anyone here tried the new Sigma APS-C 50-150mm f/2.8 lens with image
: > stabilization? I have the old, unstabilized version; and until I got use of a
: > high-end 70-200 last year, it was one of my favorite lenses for event
: > photography. It's pretty sharp, and both the focus and the zoon are internal,
: > so it doesn't collect dust. The only serious knock on it was that its AF
: > wasn't particularly fast.
: >
: > The new lens claims to be even sharper and to focus faster than the old one,
: > and it preserves the internal focus and zoom. Initial reviews have been
: > favorable, but that doesn't tell you much; early reviews often come from
: > fanboys. If it's as good as they claim, it could be a winner (assuming, of
: > course, that one can overlook Sigma's reputation for poor quality control). A
: > 50-150 arguably fits into the typical APS-C lens lineup better than the 70-200
: > does, since so many walkaround zooms top out around 50mm.
: >
: The 50-150 f2.8 OS doesn't make sense:

Have you tried one? I thought my old 50-150 was just about right.

: It weighs 95% as much as 70-200 f2.8 Fx zooms.

Yeah, but a bottom of 70 leaves a 15mm gap between it and, say, the Canon
17-55 (which I have).

: It costs about 75% as much as the Sigma 70-200 f2.8 OS.

Huh? Isn't that the same lens? Or are you talking about a FF version? I'm not
aware that such exists.

: Resale value will be poor, as it's a Sigma, and also it's an Aps-c
: format lens in the quality/price range where people think about the
: possibility of changing to 35mm format in the future.

Been there, didn't do that. When the 5D3 came out at $3500 and its new walker
came out at $2300, I punted and bought a second 7D. That said, I did
tentatively resolve to buy only FF lenses from now on. You never know.

: At $1,000 (street price) it's way over-priced for what it is.

I paid about $750 for the old, unstabilized version four or five years ago,
and I thought I got my money's worth. $1K is arguably not exhorbitant for the
same lens with IS and faster AF.

: There are good APS-c wide zooms which top out in the 70-85mm focal
: length range if you really don't want to "lose" the 50-70mm range.
: The 50-70mm range is usually able to be compensated for by "zooming with
: your feet" if you need to frame everything perfectly ex-camera.

Depending on where you are and what you're doing. It can be hard (or at least
embarrassing) to "zoom with your feet" at an awards ceremony, with all the
wives and mothers cursing you for getting in their way. ;^)

: If you also need "fast" at about 50mm, then you can get a very
: inexpensive 50mm f1.8.
: The weight of this lens (and the 70-200 f2.8s) is substantial, as you'll
: know if you used the 70-200 you tried for long enough.

The 70-200 wasn't a loaner; I still have it. I'll have to give it back if I
quit my job; in the meantime, they'd have to pry my cold, dead fingers from
around it. But yes, it is heavy. Which is why the old 50-150 still makes it
into my bag sometimes.

: I hope I've put you off - you don't need a review of the lens optical
: performance - there's enough information to be gleaned from specs and
: pricing to show that even if it performs well, it's at best a poor
: solution to a problem which doesn't exist.

No need to put me off, I wasn't going to buy it (except possibly for my wife,
who probably wouldn't like the weight). It just sounds like an interesting
lens. Like my old 50-150, but bigger, heavier, and more expensive. But with
stabilization and (allegedly) faster AF.

Bob
 
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Me
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Posts: n/a
 
      09-18-2012
On 18/09/2012 2:40 p.m., Robert Coe wrote:
> On Tue, 18 Sep 2012 09:04:50 +1200, Me <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
> : On 17/09/2012 12:46 p.m., Robert Coe wrote:
> : > Has anyone here tried the new Sigma APS-C 50-150mm f/2.8 lens with image
> : > stabilization? I have the old, unstabilized version; and until I got use of a
> : > high-end 70-200 last year, it was one of my favorite lenses for event
> : > photography. It's pretty sharp, and both the focus and the zoon are internal,
> : > so it doesn't collect dust. The only serious knock on it was that its AF
> : > wasn't particularly fast.
> : >
> : > The new lens claims to be even sharper and to focus faster than the old one,
> : > and it preserves the internal focus and zoom. Initial reviews have been
> : > favorable, but that doesn't tell you much; early reviews often come from
> : > fanboys. If it's as good as they claim, it could be a winner (assuming, of
> : > course, that one can overlook Sigma's reputation for poor quality control). A
> : > 50-150 arguably fits into the typical APS-C lens lineup better than the 70-200
> : > does, since so many walkaround zooms top out around 50mm.
> : >
> : The 50-150 f2.8 OS doesn't make sense:
>
> Have you tried one? I thought my old 50-150 was just about right.
>
> : It weighs 95% as much as 70-200 f2.8 Fx zooms.
>
> Yeah, but a bottom of 70 leaves a 15mm gap between it and, say, the Canon
> 17-55 (which I have).
>
> : It costs about 75% as much as the Sigma 70-200 f2.8 OS.
>
> Huh? Isn't that the same lens? Or are you talking about a FF version? I'm not
> aware that such exists.
>
> : Resale value will be poor, as it's a Sigma, and also it's an Aps-c
> : format lens in the quality/price range where people think about the
> : possibility of changing to 35mm format in the future.
>
> Been there, didn't do that. When the 5D3 came out at $3500 and its new walker
> came out at $2300, I punted and bought a second 7D. That said, I did
> tentatively resolve to buy only FF lenses from now on. You never know.
>
> : At $1,000 (street price) it's way over-priced for what it is.
>
> I paid about $750 for the old, unstabilized version four or five years ago,
> and I thought I got my money's worth. $1K is arguably not exhorbitant for the
> same lens with IS and faster AF.
>
> : There are good APS-c wide zooms which top out in the 70-85mm focal
> : length range if you really don't want to "lose" the 50-70mm range.
> : The 50-70mm range is usually able to be compensated for by "zooming with
> : your feet" if you need to frame everything perfectly ex-camera.
>
> Depending on where you are and what you're doing. It can be hard (or at least
> embarrassing) to "zoom with your feet" at an awards ceremony, with all the
> wives and mothers cursing you for getting in their way. ;^)
>
> : If you also need "fast" at about 50mm, then you can get a very
> : inexpensive 50mm f1.8.
> : The weight of this lens (and the 70-200 f2.8s) is substantial, as you'll
> : know if you used the 70-200 you tried for long enough.
>
> The 70-200 wasn't a loaner; I still have it. I'll have to give it back if I
> quit my job; in the meantime, they'd have to pry my cold, dead fingers from
> around it. But yes, it is heavy. Which is why the old 50-150 still makes it
> into my bag sometimes.
>
> : I hope I've put you off - you don't need a review of the lens optical
> : performance - there's enough information to be gleaned from specs and
> : pricing to show that even if it performs well, it's at best a poor
> : solution to a problem which doesn't exist.
>
> No need to put me off, I wasn't going to buy it (except possibly for my wife,
> who probably wouldn't like the weight). It just sounds like an interesting
> lens. Like my old 50-150, but bigger, heavier, and more expensive. But with
> stabilization and (allegedly) faster AF.
>
> Bob
>

I think the new OS 50-150 is quite a bit heavier than the older non OS
version you have, hence most of my negative comments.
Yes - Sigma make a 70-200 f2.8 OS, less than 100g heavier than the OS
50-150, and about $1250 street price. It's probably okay.
I'm not a Canon owner. There are two things in Canon land that I really
envy. One is the 17mm TSE, the other is the 70-200 f4 L IS. The latter
is what you should be getting your wife for Xmas. I have used that lens,
and it's an absolute gem (on 5D and 5DII bodies). In fact I'd go so far
as to say that if I decided to buy a Canon body, I'd buy the darned lens
first, then cart it around camera stores to decide which body suited it
best.
 
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David Dyer-Bennet
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      09-18-2012
PeterN <(E-Mail Removed)> writes:

> On 9/17/2012 2:02 PM, David Dyer-Bennet wrote:
>> Robert Coe <(E-Mail Removed)> writes:
>>snip>

>
>
>> One of the things DX taught me is that the 200mm limit on good lenses
>> that weren't both huge and expensive was more technological than user
>> preference.


> My 80-400 Nikon is sharp and clear. The only issue sis very slow focus.


My Sigma 120-400 is sharp, clear, and focuses very fast.

However, both it and your Nikon are f/5.6 at 400mm -- very very slow.
Unusably slow for a lot of things, forcing me to ISO 6400 sometimes for
things. It's a drag -- but I can't afford $5k for the 200-400/4, and
it's an anvil to lug around (well, not as bad as even more super
super-teles, but pretty bad).
--
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David Dyer-Bennet
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      09-18-2012
Savageduck <savageduck1@{REMOVESPAM}me.com> writes:

> On 2012-09-17 15:38:02 -0700, PeterN <(E-Mail Removed)> said:
>
>> On 9/17/2012 2:02 PM, David Dyer-Bennet wrote:
>>> Robert Coe <(E-Mail Removed)> writes:
>>> snip>

>>
>>
>>> One of the things DX taught me is that the 200mm limit on good lenses
>>> that weren't both huge and expensive was more technological than user
>>> preference.
>>>

>> My 80-400 Nikon is sharp and clear. The only issue sis very slow focus.

>
> You can say that again!
> ...and low light performance is abysmal.
>
> If you have good light and little need for fast focus it is great.


I use the Sigma 120-400 to shoot roller derby in indoor arenas. Luckily
the main one I shoot in is pretty well lit -- I was shooting 1/350 f/5.6
ISO 6400. Shooting from track level (the whole arena is flat, no way to
get higher than standing), players get in front of each other a lot, so
the AF gets a real workout, losing and reacquiring the target
constantly. This Sigma is an unltrasonic, though, so it focuses quite
fast. (Was about half the price of the Nikon, and generally got better
reviews at the time I bought it. It's done very well for me at the
price point. Obviously it has a smaller zoom range.)
--
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PeterN
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      09-18-2012
On 9/18/2012 1:05 PM, David Dyer-Bennet wrote:
> Savageduck <savageduck1@{REMOVESPAM}me.com> writes:
>
>> On 2012-09-17 15:38:02 -0700, PeterN <(E-Mail Removed)> said:
>>
>>> On 9/17/2012 2:02 PM, David Dyer-Bennet wrote:
>>>> Robert Coe <(E-Mail Removed)> writes:
>>>> snip>
>>>
>>>
>>>> One of the things DX taught me is that the 200mm limit on good lenses
>>>> that weren't both huge and expensive was more technological than user
>>>> preference.
>>>>
>>> My 80-400 Nikon is sharp and clear. The only issue sis very slow focus.

>>
>> You can say that again!
>> ...and low light performance is abysmal.
>>
>> If you have good light and little need for fast focus it is great.

>
> I use the Sigma 120-400 to shoot roller derby in indoor arenas. Luckily
> the main one I shoot in is pretty well lit -- I was shooting 1/350 f/5.6
> ISO 6400. Shooting from track level (the whole arena is flat, no way to
> get higher than standing), players get in front of each other a lot, so
> the AF gets a real workout, losing and reacquiring the target
> constantly. This Sigma is an unltrasonic, though, so it focuses quite
> fast. (Was about half the price of the Nikon, and generally got better
> reviews at the time I bought it. It's done very well for me at the
> price point. Obviously it has a smaller zoom range.)
>


I've been invited to do a roller derby shoot. I had planned to use my
70-200 with a 1.7 extender. Any tips?


--
Peter
 
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