Sigma 8-16mm Review (Long with many images)

Started Jun 8, 2010 | Discussions thread
Severian The Lame
Contributing MemberPosts: 500Gear list
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Sigma 8-16mm Review: Conclusion
In reply to Severian The Lame, Jun 9, 2010

This lens is impressive and fun to use but challenging to master.

The build is excellent. It's sharp wide open at every focal length. Flare and ghosting are not a serious problem. Chromatic aberration is a non-issue.

On the other hand: at 8mm it exhibits significant (but typical) barrel distortion which contains components that cannot easily be completely removed with standard software tools. Also there appears to be a good deal of sample variation (based on various other posts) and several reports of copies that are at least mildly decentered.

My bottom line is that I'm happy to own this lens even though I found out early on that it has some issues. I did not return the lens because: a) I really wanted the it and knew if I returned it it would just be to get another; b) multiple reports of other copies having the same problem led me to conclude that my chances of getting a better copy weren't as good as my chances of getting a worse (especially considering that I and another had both gotten our lenses from Adorama at about the same time and his appeared to be worse than mine); c) the problem, while definite and needing of correction, was not severe. In other words it wasn't returned because I thought it more likely that servicing the lens I already had would yield a better result than RMA roulette. Moreover, I've since discovered a workaround that solves the problem for my typical uses of this lens.

My question now is, which is the best Sigma service center for this kind of thing?

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