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Old 03-06-2006   #1
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Default Sigma 50-500

I'm contemplating buying a long lens and I'm attracted to 2 options (mainly because I can't afford Canon L lenses): Sigma 50-500 and Tamron 200-500.
My favorite would be the Sigma because of the flexibility (no need to change lens all the time if you happen to need something below 200), but I've seen reviews that say that it isn't very good at 500 (e.g. Photozone rates it lower than the Tamron: http://www.photozone.de/8Reviews/len..._463/index.htm vs http://www.photozone.de/8Reviews/len..._563/index.htm).
But I've also seen people posting on forums saying that it's really sharp at 500 (but without backing it with hard data or 100% crop).
If there are owners here, what do you think of the softness at 500? Is it really bad?

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Old 03-06-2006   #2
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Default Re: Sigma 50-500

cedric, dont believe everything you read. your eye wont lie. most of the bird pics are with my bigma. some even with the 1.4 added. all the osprey pics are the bigma (sigma 50-500). some shots are hand held as well. if you have any other questions let me know. camera is listed in my sig

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Old 03-06-2006   #3
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Default Re: Sigma 50-500

I have often wanted a Bigma, just never had the right money. I know that it lies to the camera about the F-stop when you zoom in tight (500mm), as it tells the camera it is 5.6. That is the max aperture that most cameras will allow autofocusing (pro DSLRS can use f/.

I assume the Fuji S2 is this way, so let us know Badpickev.

I have seen many and many really nice pics with the Bigma. I think skeptics think that it is really hard to get a 10x zoomer to perform well across the whole range, and there are not too many that even due 10x zoom in the DSLR world. If this is true, then the Tamron should be better optically, but it still depends on the glass used.
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Old 03-06-2006   #4
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Default Re: Sigma 50-500

Thanks for the information.
I'll show my ignorance here: I've seen several mentions of the fact that cameras don't autofocus beyond 5.6. But from a user point of view I can focus with AF on at any aperture. So what does that mean?
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Old 03-06-2006   #5
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Default Re: Sigma 50-500

It represents the maximum aperature of the lens. When a 1.4X is used with a lens it will add one stop. On my 400mmL f5.6, I can autofocus without the TC, but once I add the Teleconverter it will no longer AF. I can defeat this and trick the camera by taping over three of the electrical contacts.

BTW, I also looked at the Sigma 50-500. I finally decided on the Canon Prime because of the rebates at the time and due to the fact that when out in the woods I typically shoot zoomed to the max. I have seen countless great images with the sigma. Another option for you may be the Canon 100-400mm L.

Good Luck.
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Old 03-06-2006   #6
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Default Re: Sigma 50-500

Quote:
Originally Posted by cedric_r
Thanks for the information.
I'll show my ignorance here: I've seen several mentions of the fact that cameras don't autofocus beyond 5.6. But from a user point of view I can focus with AF on at any aperture. So what does that mean?
This is because the camera (or yourself) will focus with lens at its maximum aperture and then close down to the set apt. just before opening the shutter. try setting the camera to f16 or better and then press the depth of field preview button to see the lens close down. As for the 50-500 I like mine, it's a bit heavy and needs a lot of light to work well but still a good deal. Here's a 100% crop for you-

taken at Mosport raceway during AMLS races - 500 mm f10 1/2500 sec 800 iso - had to keep the shutter speed up as the cars were really moving. Another good place for samples is p base - http://www.pbase.com/cameras/sigma/50500_463_ex_apo_rf will get you lots of samples

Bob

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Old 03-06-2006   #7
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Default Re: Sigma 50-500

That image is a good example. Shows a lot about this lens. Thanks for posting it.
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Old 03-06-2006   #8
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Default Re: Sigma 50-500

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Pickles
I have often wanted a Bigma, just never had the right money. I know that it lies to the camera about the F-stop when you zoom in tight (500mm), as it tells the camera it is 5.6. That is the max aperture that most cameras will allow autofocusing (pro DSLRS can use f/.

I assume the Fuji S2 is this way, so let us know Badpickev.

I have seen many and many really nice pics with the Bigma. I think skeptics think that it is really hard to get a 10x zoomer to perform well across the whole range, and there are not too many that even due 10x zoom in the DSLR world. If this is true, then the Tamron should be better optically, but it still depends on the glass used.
Actually, mine reads f/6.3 on my Nikon cameras when I'm at 500mm.

I believe most newer DSLR's can autofocus to f/8

I've seen and tried the Tamron. I considered the Sigma hands down a much better lens optically. It's sharper from what I could tell.

Here's one on the D100

http://www.pbase.com/loansharkx/image/40284415

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Old 03-07-2006   #9
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Default Re: Sigma 50-500

Thanks everyone. The sigma looks like a good choice. I'm only worried about the comment on the need for lots of light because at the moment I have a Tamron 28-300 and I already have trouble in the winter even in the sunshine because the light levels here outside high summer are fairly low.
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Old 03-07-2006   #10
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Default Re: Sigma 50-500

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Pickles
I have often wanted a Bigma, just never had the right money. I know that it lies to the camera about the F-stop when you zoom in tight (500mm), as it tells the camera it is 5.6. That is the max aperture that most cameras will allow autofocusing (pro DSLRS can use f/.

I assume the Fuji S2 is this way, so let us know Badpickev.

I have seen many and many really nice pics with the Bigma. I think skeptics think that it is really hard to get a 10x zoomer to perform well across the whole range, and there are not too many that even due 10x zoom in the DSLR world. If this is true, then the Tamron should be better optically, but it still depends on the glass used.
here is what is funny about the bigma and the s2. when i put on the sigma 1.4, it will not af. but when i put on my kenk/tokina mc7 2x, it will af. now having said that if the light is not right, its hunts big time. but on a bright sunny day, it will lock.


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