Quick Advice on Sony 70-400 or Sigma 50-500

Started Jul 12, 2014 | Discussions thread
OP BrokenPine Forum Member • Posts: 78
Re: Quick Advice on Sony 70-400 or Sigma 50-500

Calico Jack wrote:

Neither. The 70-400 is grossly overpriced for what it is and the BIGMA albeit with a longer reach isn't anything to write home about. Add the teleconverter aspect (cannot AF above F/4.5) all you have are expensive telephoto's that compared to certain other cheaper models don't hold water in terms of their capabilities. The SAL 70-300/400 G's are well known to struggle above 200/300mm, especially with fast action subjects and I'm not a one-man mission here as plenty of other owners/users have also verified what I found out many moons ago and have come to the exact same conclusion that they're not worthy of a G rating simply because they cannot perform under all conditions of use whilst delivering top quality IQ. The 70-400 also looks like an excited horses dangly bits when fully extended.

Also factor in the Minolta legacy G lenses. Compare the Sony versions to them and it's like night and day (if you've never owned top-shelf minolta optics then you won't appreciate the differences) and the Sony G's are nothing like the Minolta G's.

On the other hand, if you'll consider primes, then you'll be hard to beat the Minolta 200/2.8, 300/2.8 and 400/4.5. The Minolta 300/4 isn't in the same league as the other models, though the 80-200/2.8 is pretty special as is the Sigma 70-200/2.8 OS EX DG (IF) HSM, sigma 100-300/4 EX DG (IF) APO, Tokina AT-X PRO 80-200/2.8 AF (AF 828), Tokina AT-X 300/4 AF (AF 304) and Sigma 300/2.8 EX DG (IF) APO plus they'll all take a TC so you'll get plenty of flexibility or extending the range and having bought 3x copies of the Minolta 300/2.8 G for less money than a new SAL 70-400 G, so you don't have to pay silly money for top shelf glass, plus the results will blow your socks off in comparison, though I'll agree the 70-400 G does take a nice photo with static subjects up to 300mm.

The bottom line is whether you want optimum IQ, lens type (zoom/prime), budget and type of use which will determine what lens type will serve your needs best.

Anyway, whatever you decide, happy hunting but don't be paying silly money because you don't have to and do extensive research from a short list before making your purchase. Oh and one last thing, repair bills for top shelf lenses should be factored in, especially for discontinued models as parts may not be available and also check on both Sony and Sigma websites for repair tariff charges based on lens model as it's not cheap if you need a repair, but that's the chance you'll have to accept.

Thanks for the reply. I do already own a Sony 70-200mm 2.8, so I don't necessarily need anything in the 200 range. As far as primes go, the reason why I am not looking into them is because I need a zoom for the type of filming I will be doing. I will need to be able to get wide and go deep, so that's why I was interested in either the 70-400 Sony or the 50-500 Sigma. It would be too hard and almost impractical to switch lenses when filming hunts, so having the flexibility is great!

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