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Some Comments on Sigma 50-500mm Lens


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chngpe01

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#1
Always been curious about this lens, Yesterday I had the opportunity to try the Sigma 50-500mm - Nikon mount (courtesy of Viewfinder)

Thought I just share some of my personal views of this lens, especially for those who like to have 500mm lens capability but budget is the main constrain (disclaimer: I am not a pro nor any expert but just a simple beginner who like to take nature photo. My views may be too simple and subjective)

1. Value for money - Certainly Value for money, after-all it cost about 1/7 of the price of 500mm prime (nikon)

2. Light and can be hand held. I really like the weight and the flexibility to hand hold. Try it on a 500mm prime ;p and you appreciate this weight advantage.

3. Quality of picture - me no expert. But I find them acceptable and reasonably sharp. I have attach 2 hand held shots from this lens. As I am a beginner the pic shown should not be taken as a those done for review or marketing of the lens. I also show a sample taken with a Nikon 300mm f4 AFS and Nikon 500mm f4 AFSII - hence the quality of the photographer for all the 3 lens is constant ie that's me.

Down side but not big deal (to me)

1. A bit slow AF. Some hunting this is due the the f6.3 max aperture. Can do manual AF, so no big deal.

2. Max aperture of 6.3 for 500mm. Because of this the lighting condition must be ideal to have good shots or for shots that require higher speed including for handheld role. This can be overcome by increasing the ISO in the camera in this case I use ISO 800.

All in all I am impress with the lens and 2 things that make it a wonderful lens, that is (to me) the weight and the value for money. At least they make it reasonably affordable for many ppl to own the capability of a 500mm. For a beginner, because of the limitation of the lens, it will certainly make him/her learn more ie. more practise on manual focus, ways to cope with aperture limitation etc. hence good learning tool if I may say.

Well this is just my simple view of this lens, no flame please, if you disagree. My idea here is to share my personal take on this lens.
 

chngpe01

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#2
Thess 2 pics are taken with the Sigma 50-500mm

Aperture Priority mode, 500mm, ISO 800, f6.3, ISO 800, fill-in flash -3. Both hand-held. Shady area.

First pic 1/320secs


Second pic 1/250sec


These are taken with Nikon AFS 300mm, f4, direct late afternoon light.
Aperture Priority mode, 300mm, ISO 250, f4, fill-in flash -3. Both hand-held

1/320


1/400
 

erwinx

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#4
Can also consider the Sigma 500 f/4.5 as a 'middle ground between' the 50-500 and the OEM 500 f/4. The Sigma 500 was displayed at fotoguide and looked very compact as well...

i would prefer 300 f/4+1.4x (430 mm f/5.6) over 500 mm f/6.3...
2nd hand nikon 300 f/4 has been seen for like $700.


That Munia has really wild colours; never seen anything like it... could it be mating plumage?
 

chngpe01

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#5
Originally posted by erwinx

i would prefer 300 f/4+1.4x (430 mm f/5.6) over 500 mm f/6.3...
2nd hand nikon 300 f/4 has been seen for like $700.


That Munia has really wild colours; never seen anything like it... could it be mating plumage?
Yeap agree, the 300mmf4 with 1.4TC is a good. I love this lens.

As for the Munia plumage, this is also the first time I am seeing it. I too believe it is probably the mating plumage - and male I believe?.
 

tomshen

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#6
Dont forget 50-500 is a super zoom lens, the convenience of which is unbeatable. If you shoot digital with 50-500, its weakness (like inferior sharpness/contrast to the primes) can be reduced further. It does not offer the best optical quality, but certainly one of the best values out there. I don't mind getting another L lens to replace my 50-500, but for the consideration of cost, it would be in the long future. wish there could be a 200-400/f4 DO lens priced under S$5k (hah, must be a dream).

Actually the point is: if one can afford a 500/f4, who does not want? No money, no talk.

btw, for nature shots under bright day light, I'd never use ISO800. One thing you must get used to a slower lens is to control the camera shake, even below 1/100s at 800mm equivalent focal length.
 

chngpe01

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#7
Originally posted by tomshen
Dont forget 50-500 is a super zoom lens, the convenience of which is unbeatable.

btw, for nature shots under bright day light, I'd never use ISO800. One thing you must get used to a slower lens is to control the camera shake, even below 1/100s at 800mm equivalent focal length.
Yeap agree, I use ISO 800 in this instance because I want to test it handheld hence require the speed. I agree lower ISO is always preferred

:)
 

Marx

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Wow! This last shot is greaaaat! :thumbsup:

Is this taken at the zoom end??

Also, what's the price of the Sigma 50-500mm like? ;p
 

tomshen

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#11
Originally posted by Marx
Wow! This last shot is greaaaat! :thumbsup:

Is this taken at the zoom end??

Also, what's the price of the Sigma 50-500mm like? ;p
Canon D60 + Sigma 50-500/f4-6.3 on tripod + 25mm extension tube + cable release. 500mm, Av, f8, evalutive metering at -1/3, fill-in flash -1 1/3EV. ISO 400, cloudy white balancing.

I've printed this shot, super! This is why the Sigma 50-500 could be a jem to those who have PATIENCE and PERSEVERANCE to master a long telephoto but short of money.

Priced at <S$1.6k new.
 

klsss

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#12
Originally posted by erwinx
Can also consider the Sigma 500 f/4.5 as a 'middle ground between' the 50-500 and the OEM 500 f/4. The Sigma 500 was displayed at fotoguide and looked very compact as well...

i would prefer 300 f/4+1.4x (430 mm f/5.6) over 500 mm f/6.3...
2nd hand nikon 300 f/4 has been seen for like $700.


thanks

That Munia has really wild colours; never seen anything like it... could it be mating plumage?


Wat do u mean OEM 500 lens ? n w can i find a 300f4 at 700 ?
 

MaGixShOe

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#13
chngpe01: the 4th shot is very nice, got a certian feel to it

tomshen: u got do alot of sharpening to the photo or is the sharpness straight out of the camera? i doubt its the latter rite, but the colours are great!
 

tomshen

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Originally posted by MaGixShOe
tomshen: u got do alot of sharpening to the photo or is the sharpness straight out of the camera? i doubt its the latter rite, but the colours are great!
Of course not straight out of camera. All original shots from D60's CMOS censor are soft. This is the feature of DSLR. I often wonder why many pple don't learn to do proper post processing yet keep upgrading their gears (say from Sigma to Canon L). Eventually some cannot adapt to digital so rather keep away.

I don't have a 500/f4 to compare, but don't argue that 500/f4 should be better in terms of sharpness and contrast. However, does it justify the price for most amateur photographers here? Erwin prefers 300/f4 and I can see his reason. I have see some great shots from 300/f4, very contrasty, beating Sigma 50-500 to the ground. But again, 50-500 has its own advantages. My most concern is the background, which may not be able to be provided with a 300/f4 or 420/f5.6 attaching a 25mm extension tube.
 

erwinx

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#16
Originally posted by tomshen
Of course not straight out of camera. All original shots from D60's CMOS censor are soft. This is the feature of DSLR. I often wonder why many pple don't learn to do proper post processing yet keep upgrading their gears (say from Sigma to Canon L). Eventually some cannot adapt to digital so rather keep away.

I don't have a 500/f4 to compare, but don't argue that 500/f4 should be better in terms of sharpness and contrast. However, does it justify the price for most amateur photographers here? Erwin prefers 300/f4 and I can see his reason. I have see some great shots from 300/f4, very contrasty, beating Sigma 50-500 to the ground. But again, 50-500 has its own advantages. My most concern is the background, which may not be able to be provided with a 300/f4 or 420/f5.6 attaching a 25mm extension tube.



The 300 f/4 AF-S's minimum focusing distance is 5ft

300 f/4 AF-S+1.4x TC 1/125 f/8 (first attempt at AH some time ago, not enuf DoF) about 80% of frame i think...
 

MaGixShOe

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#17
yes, i understand that images out of Canon Cmos is soft, it also depends on the lens used, just want to know how much detail it can resolve as compared to ur lets say 70-200? i know they are in a different class, but if the sigma one can be 3/4 as good as canon's offering then its worth it...

i dun own any of these huge lens and i dun find a need for them yet:)
 

tomshen

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#18
Originally posted by MaGixShOe
yes, i understand that images out of Canon Cmos is soft, it also depends on the lens used, just want to know how much detail it can resolve as compared to ur lets say 70-200? i know they are in a different class, but if the sigma one can be 3/4 as good as canon's offering then its worth it...

i dun own any of these huge lens and i dun find a need for them yet:)
More than the need of most photographers here, at least to me. I am satisfied with Sigma 50-500 in the sense it provides good value. So far I have not found another lens to replace it in its price tag.
 

sfhuang

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#19
Originally posted by tomshen
Canon D60 + Sigma 50-500/f4-6.3 on tripod + 25mm extension tube + cable release. 500mm, Av, f8, evalutive metering at -1/3, fill-in flash -1 1/3EV. ISO 400, cloudy white balancing.
Tom, a bit OT here but why did you use evaluative metering at -1/3?

Thanks.
sfhuang
 

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