Sigma 70-200mm experience

Started Jul 12, 2007 | Discussions thread
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twmangrove Regular Member • Posts: 464
Sigma 70-200mm experience

Hi all,
I own the Sigma 70-200mm DG HSM (non-macro).

The Sigma gets a real mix of reviews on the net. Seems most people would rather have the Nikon 80- or 70-200mm over the Sigma, with lots of comments about variations in lens quality on the Sigmas, and their being soft at 200mm f/2.8.

At fist I thought my Sigma had issues. And then I realized I had issues ie: not knowing what the hell I'm doing. Thanks to the folks in this forum, who reminded me that when shooting at 200mm to use a shutter speed of at least 500mm (always the student here).

Anyhow, these days, as I'm shooting outdoors more often, and I find myself grabbing the Sigma more and more. It's rare that I'll shoot at f/2.8, though I am using the long end of the lens quite often. With some of the criticisms of this lens in mind I did some informal testing of the Sigma at 200mm and f/2.8, with a fast shutter speed to deal with my unsteady hands. What I find myself capable of getting, when shooting horizontally, is an image that is, IMHO, sharp along the centre plane, blurring to the front and the back. Stopped to f/4 and the improvement is dramatic.

I am not sure how much better the Nikons would be at 200mm and f/2.8. Perhaps the area of sharpness is broader? The colour is better? I don't know (I'd love to try one and find out). I'd also assume the VR would be lovely to have, especially when indoor hockey picks up again this Sept.

For now, however, I am thinking the Sigma is actually quite a fine bit of glass, and will do just fine. If it breaks somewhere down the road, I'll maybe go with the Nikon. In the meantime, I'll pick up a monopod for hockey – poor man's VR.
I don't know if this post will be of use to anyone, but there it is.
Cheers.

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