The Sigma 500mm F4 DG OS HSM Sport - sample images

Started Oct 29, 2018 | Discussions thread
OP FrankG Senior Member • Posts: 2,194
Re: The Sigma 500mm F4 DG OS HSM Sport - sample images

RVJ wrote:

Hi Frank, thanks for the detailed reply.
I've had several Sigma lenses before and been very happy with all of them.
I guess it was just the weight and size of the 500 that required a much faster shutter speed for a steady shot. Although I suspect Canon's IS technology improved a little in the years between the release of the latest 500 and the 100 - 400.

How do you find the IQ of the Sigma 150-600 Sport, wide open at 600mm?
I've read so many contradicting reviews about this lens, some can't praise it enough, and others saying you get better images by using a shorter Canon/Nikon own brand, and then cropping in post.

Wide open at 600mm the 150-600 Sport (at least my copy) is very good but needs stopping down a bit for best IQ.  So I usually prefer to use it at F7.1 which is slightly crisper than F6.3.  It's probably technically sharpest at F8 at 600mm but perhaps optimum perceptual sharpness at 600mm may be at F9 or even F10 (mainly due to better DOF) when it is quite capable of delivering absolutely stunning results that would compete with any lens, prime or otherwise - but it depends on the subject and the distance.  Zoom out a bit and the sharpness can be simply outstanding especially in the 300 to 450 or so range.

So if you have good light the zoom is excellent.

However … the 500mm F4 takes things to an even higher level:  it has that  kind of extreme, almost forensic, ultra sharpness, clarity and subject isolation even wide-open that zooms seldom quite match and of course is over a stop faster.

Plus also the 500 offers superb bokeh (possibly the best of all the 500 options out there)although the zoom also does very well under many circumstances.

At the moment, all my shooting is being done under tree cover, and involves wading through waste depth streams to access the spots, so perhaps a big, heavy 500 wouldn't be ideal for getting there, however good it'd be when I was there.

That sounds quite hazardous.   Personally I would be very wary of exposing my most expensive kit to the risks and I would definitely want have the lens supported on at least a monopod (I now normally use an ultra-lightweight carbon fibre Gitzo:  the GM2542 coupled with a Sirui L-10 tilt head).   However as for weight … you might be surprised at how well balanced the 500 is and it really isn't all that much heavier than the 150-600 Sport (3310g v 2860g), plus the carbon fibre hood on the 500 is actually a bit lighter (so with hood its total weight about 3570g v 3160g - so the 500 is only approx. 400g heavier).  Also the 150-600 is more "front heavy" when zoomed out so it actually doesn't really feel that much lighter.

Sounds like you maybe ought to at least try handling one in a dealers before you buy perhaps!


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