Sigma 150-600 on XH1

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Fuji Maine Contributing Member • Posts: 513
Sigma 150-600 on XH1

Rather than highjack the previous thread discussing the Sigma via a fringer adapter I thought I'd start from scratch with my first impressions.

I received the fringer adapter yesterday and after sitting on the edge of my seat for most the morning I received the lens a couple hours ago.

Performing firmware updates on both the adapter and lens took all of ten minutes in total.

After some shopping around I was able to find the finger (pro ii) used on B&H for $275 in 9+ condition and the lens used on eBay for $650 (after 10% off promotion discount plus having a seller accept my "best offer"). The condition of the lens was described as excellent and after inspection it's spotless. After tax I'm all in for $950, not too shabby.

The XT3 has been widely praised for its auto focus speed over the previous generation so I was admittedly nervous that perhaps my milage may be a different on my trusty XH1. Coming from the 55-200 I was used to a pretty snappy lens, albeit sometimes a bit inaccurate. Now I'm not going to say that the sigma is as fast as my Fuji 55-200 but I will say that it's pretty darn close and after firing off 100 test photos I didn't get one shot that had the photo focused on something other than what I focused on. The manual focusing experience is a little shorter of a throw than I may have hoped for from a video standpoint but it's certainly a mile better than any focus by wire system.

With regard to image quality this lens resolves VERY nicely. Images from 150-300 are very sharp wide open, quite sharp from 300-500 wide open and acceptably sharp at 600 wide open with some predictable fall off around the edges. Even a quarter stop at all three levels brought the quality even further.

That's all the good but in photography as with most things in life there are no free rides. The length of the lens is exactly what I expected from a lens of this zoom power. The weight is, well, heavy. There's no way around it. Just holding it in its including carrying bag I said to myself, "oh this is actually pretty light". It's a completely different story attached to a camera body and trying to point it at something. My test shots were mostly on a tripod but I did some handheld just to see what the limits were. Unlike native Fuji lenses you can actually shut off the lens stab while keeping it on in body. That exercise made me appreciate that it had stabilization but between general handling and just how much shake there is at long zooms I was very grateful to be shooting an XH1. At 400 I could get satisfactory results at 1/100, decent at 1/150 and acceptable at 1/200. At 60mm all bets are off. You better at least be able to brace yourself a little bit at 1/200 or you're not going to get the shot. This is less a critic of the lens and more speaking to the experience of a first timer using a lens of this length.

It hasn't been mentioned here so I thought I'd also breakdown the aperture to zoom. It's f5 150-179, f5.6 180-399 and f6.3 400-600.

Now down to the important part. Did I originally want the native Fuji 100-400, yes. Do I feel like I'm missing anything in getting the sigma over the Fuji, no. I kept seeing comments from people when discussing the fringer adapter that it was only worth it if you already owned Canon glass. While I'm very satisfied with my native Fuji lenses, I'm also so impressed with my early experiences with the fringer that I've already picked out my next two lenses and they are both Canon mount. Even still it was worth the purchase just for this lens as I got out of it for significantly less than the cost of the fuji 100-400 and got even more range.

Once the daily parade of deer make their way through my yard this afternoon I'll grab some photos and post them but I at least thought I'd give some first impressions before I'm too busy using the lens!

Fujifilm X-T3
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