Sigma 19mm 2.8 for night / astro shots?

Started 6 months ago | Discussions
jbbevel
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Sigma 19mm 2.8 for night / astro shots?
6 months ago

With the price reduction of the Sigma 19 I'm considering this lens for my night shots. Will it handle astro photography though? The $169 sale right now is very tempting, though in my heart I'd prefer the 12mm rokinon.

Thoughts? Thanks, John

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joe6pack
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Re: Sigma 19mm 2.8 for night / astro shots?
In reply to jbbevel, 6 months ago

I'm assuming you are not attaching your camera to telescope. IMHO, a manual focus lens is much preferred. The focus-by-wire auto lens will drive you nuts as you have to refocus every time the camera shutdown.

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DimitriDV
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Re: Sigma 19mm 2.8 for night / astro shots?
In reply to jbbevel, 6 months ago

Not a pro, but I took this one with Nex 6 + Sigma 19mm:

https://www.flickr.com/photos/dimitriv/13679561253/

I used the MultiFrame NR option and a 8 seconds exposure for each frame, iso 12800, then processed the OOC jpeg. I don't have a non-MFNR sample at hand to show. MFNR is probably also not the best idea for this use case, as the different exposures combined with the movement of the stars could lead to some incorrect stars removals. It still turned out nice imo.

Results on a A6000 would be even better due to 24Mpx and perhaps better high iso.

However, I had some trouble finding infinity focus in my first tentatives, so a MF lens like the Rokinon 12mm could be a better option in regards to that; I think the A6000 also shows graphically when you are on infinity focus when set to MF.

Also, being the Rokinon 12mm lens wider, you can cover a bigger portion of the sky, and you notice lesser movement in the stars, allowing for slightly longer exposures; not to mention that it is one stop faster, so you can use one stop lower iso which makes a big difference.

If your aim is to photograph starry nights, I'd absolutely go for the Rokinon instead of the Sigma, surely so if the IQ report I've seen here on the forum gets some confirmations from other users. It's more expensive, but not that much more compared to other E-mount offerings; and you probably have the 19mm focal length already covered by another lens (es. kit lens).

Small addition: the lighting conditions were not optimal for my photo above (city/village behind the hills for example), and the Milky Way was placed in a very inconvenient place...

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Some photos taken since I bought my Nex-6&A6000 (few with Nex-7): http://www.flickr.com/photos/dimitriv/

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DimitriDV
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Re: Sigma 19mm 2.8 for night / astro shots?
In reply to joe6pack, 6 months ago

joe6pack wrote:

The focus-by-wire auto lens will drive you nuts as you have to refocus every time the camera shutdown.

That was not my experience, at least with the SELP1650. I used to set it to hyperfocal at 16mm, manual focus, and whenever I turned off and back on, focus would be at the same spot.
 But I have not verified with other lenses.

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Some photos taken since I bought my Nex-6&A6000 (few with Nex-7): http://www.flickr.com/photos/dimitriv/

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uhligfd
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Re: Sigma 19mm 2.8 for night / astro shots?
In reply to DimitriDV, 6 months ago

oh, what a last poster sentence this is:

" … and the Milky Way was placed in a very inconvenient place… ...

Wondering who placed it there, actively.

What a phrase, the Milky way was placed by Sony, by Allianz, by GM by … your language mal-apropos … Sorry to cringe and laugh at the same time ...

"...and the Milky Way was placed in a very inconvenient place…"

A literary gem by all means. Much better than the picture, which by itself is already very good!

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jbbevel
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Re: Sigma 19mm 2.8 for night / astro shots?
In reply to DimitriDV, 6 months ago

DimitriDV wrote:

Not a pro, but I took this one with Nex 6 + Sigma 19mm:

I used the MultiFrame NR option and a 8 seconds exposure for each frame, iso 12800, then processed the OOC jpeg. I don't have a non-MFNR sample at hand to show. MFNR is probably also not the best idea for this use case, as the different exposures combined with the movement of the stars could lead to some incorrect stars removals. It still turned out nice imo.

Results on a A6000 would be even better due to 24Mpx and perhaps better high iso.

However, I had some trouble finding infinity focus in my first tentatives, so a MF lens like the Rokinon 12mm could be a better option in regards to that; I think the A6000 also shows graphically when you are on infinity focus when set to MF.

Also, being the Rokinon 12mm lens wider, you can cover a bigger portion of the sky, and you notice lesser movement in the stars, allowing for slightly longer exposures; not to mention that it is one stop faster, so you can use one stop lower iso which makes a big difference.

If your aim is to photograph starry nights, I'd absolutely go for the Rokinon instead of the Sigma, surely so if the IQ report I've seen here on the forum gets some confirmations from other users. It's more expensive, but not that much more compared to other E-mount offerings; and you probably have the 19mm focal length already covered by another lens (es. kit lens).

Small addition: the lighting conditions were not optimal for my photo above (city/village behind the hills for example), and the Milky Way was placed in a very inconvenient place...

-- hide signature --

Some photos taken since I bought my Nex-6&A6000 (few with Nex-7): http://www.flickr.com/photos/dimitriv/

I'm thinking that you are correct. I really appreciate you sharing your image though. That really helps. I may be spending more money again!

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captura
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Re: Sigma 19mm 2.8 for night / astro shots?
In reply to jbbevel, 6 months ago

Is that the older DN or the newer ART model? The 'old' model tested out a couple of points higher in DxO tests. Same for the 30.

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areichow
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Re: Sigma 19mm 2.8 for night / astro shots?
In reply to joe6pack, 6 months ago

I've done a lot of night work with my 5R mostly with the SEL16F28. It isn't all that bad. You can't really trust the hard infinity stop on an MF lens anyway.

The trick is to let the camera go to sleep, don't switch it off. It keeps focus that way.
--
<a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/diogenic/">flickr</a>

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DimitriDV
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Re: Sigma 19mm 2.8 for night / astro shots?
In reply to captura, 6 months ago

I have the old model

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Some photos taken since I bought my Nex-6&A6000 (few with Nex-7): http://www.flickr.com/photos/dimitriv/

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DimitriDV
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Re: Sigma 19mm 2.8 for night / astro shots?
In reply to areichow, 6 months ago

areichow wrote:

I've done a lot of night work with my 5R mostly with the SEL16F28. It isn't all that bad. You can't really trust the hard infinity stop on an MF lens anyway.

The trick is to let the camera go to sleep, don't switch it off. It keeps focus that way.
--
<a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/diogenic/">flickr</a>

But with a MF lens you can always mark the position of infinity focus if it's incorrect

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Some photos taken since I bought my Nex-6&A6000 (few with Nex-7): http://www.flickr.com/photos/dimitriv/

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captura
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Re: Sigma 19mm 2.8 for night / astro shots?
In reply to DimitriDV, 6 months ago

DimitriDV wrote:

I have the old model

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Some photos taken since I bought my Nex-6&A6000 (few with Nex-7): http://www.flickr.com/photos/dimitriv/

The 19 has a reputation on this forum as being an inferior lens, which it definitely is not. It actually scores nearly as highly in all respects as the Sigma 30 on Roger Cicala's GREAt Imatests at Lens Rentals. It's only lower I believe because wide lenses usually DO test lower. The 19's comes with a reversible hood which I use to conceal the Pana. 46mm G lens Fisheye adapter. This actually ends up getting me a UWA effect, not fisheye.

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