Anyone "graduate" to Sony 10-18 from Sigma 19?

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Lens_Goat Regular Member • Posts: 260
Anyone "graduate" to Sony 10-18 from Sigma 19?

Once I have the funds, I have an aspiration to pick up a Sony 10-18 which would supplant my Sigma 19. I know I could supplement my Sigma 19 with a Rokinon 12 but while hiking it is far more convenient to have in just one lens. Swapping lenses in and out, takes both time and is a precarious proposition with sweaty/dirty fingers so close to the sensor. (Well maybe it ain't that risky.)

For those of you who gone from the Sigma 19 to the Sony 10-18 or, rather, have experience with both lenses, would you say it is worth it? I know DXOmark likes the modestly priced Sigma decidedly more and I dig the 19mm focal length. But I know there's more to a lens than sharpness and the compositional flexibility provided by the 10-18 is alluring.

Contrary to the tests, have you guys preferred the IQ of pictures taken with your 10-18 to those of the Sigma 19?

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OpticsEngineer Veteran Member • Posts: 5,900
Re: Anyone "graduate" to Sony 10-18 from Sigma 19?
4

Zooms in general are not as sharp as primes.    If you like the sharpness of the Sigma, it would probably not be a good move to get a Sony 10-18.

I don't have the Sigma to compare to, but in this case I think we can answer what you would like to know with pictures from the Sony 10-18.

I have two copies of the 10-18.  First one was clearly defective.  Second one is better but still not great.  Here are a couple of shots of brick wall with the better copy.

If you zoom in on the left and right sides, you will see the horizontal lines are sharp but the vertical lines are fuzzy.  This is called astigmatism.  It tends to give photos a harsh busy nature in those regions (in actual landscape photos, not just brick wall shots.)   I also have a Canon 10-18 I use on a Canon 70D and an Olympus 9-18 I use on an EPL7.   Both lenses cost a lot less than the Sony 10-18 and perform a lot better.   The nice thing about the Sony 10-18 is you just take of the lens cap and you are good to start shooting.  With the Canon and Olympus wide angle zooms, you have to unlock the barrel and then extend the lens.  Kind of a pain, but from an optical design standpoint it is a pain that is necessary to build a zoom that stores small but can also take good quality images.  I think what happened with the Sony 10-18 the lens designers were given the assignment that the unlocking extending barrel trick was absolutely not allowed and they had to achieve a small size.  So they did what they could.  And we got a lens with optical quality that was not as good as other brands.  (but, hey, it is the only small, non-extending wide angle zoom on the market, so that has got to be a good selling point)

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OP Lens_Goat Regular Member • Posts: 260
Re: Anyone "graduate" to Sony 10-18 from Sigma 19?

OpticsEngineer wrote:

Zooms in general are not as sharp as primes. If you like the sharpness of the Sigma, it would probably not be a good move to get a Sony 10-18.

I don't have the Sigma to compare to, but in this case I think we can answer what you would like to know with pictures from the Sony 10-18.

I have two copies of the 10-18. First one was clearly defective. Second one is better but still not great. Here are a couple of shots of brick wall with the better copy.

If you zoom in on the left and right sides, you will see the horizontal lines are sharp but the vertical lines are fuzzy. This is called astigmatism. It tends to give photos a harsh busy nature in those regions (in actual landscape photos, not just brick wall shots.) I also have a Canon 10-18 I use on a Canon 70D and an Olympus 9-18 I use on an EPL7. Both lenses cost a lot less than the Sony 10-18 and perform a lot better. The nice thing about the Sony 10-18 is you just take of the lens cap and you are good to start shooting. With the Canon and Olympus wide angle zooms, you have to unlock the barrel and then extend the lens. Kind of a pain, but from an optical design standpoint it is a pain that is necessary to build a zoom that stores small but can also take good quality images. I think what happened with the Sony 10-18 the lens designers were given the assignment that the unlocking extending barrel trick was absolutely not allowed and they had to achieve a small size. So they did what they could. And we got a lens with optical quality that was not as good as other brands. (but, hey, it is the only small, non-extending wide angle zoom on the market, so that has got to be a good selling point)

Thank you for the pictures and enlightening read. Is that really astigmatism? I notice both the horizontal and vertical bricks become soft on the sides but are relatively sharp in the center. You took both of these shots wide open and at each end of the focal range. These are pretty demanding circumstances.

I posted a night picture taken by my Sigma 19 in the other thread if you wish to appraise its sharpness. I have not much of a frame of reference to tell myself.

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OP Lens_Goat Regular Member • Posts: 260
Re: Anyone "graduate" to Sony 10-18 from Sigma 19?

Here is an unprocessed mountain shot taken by my Sigma 19. I just pulled the raw file to my desktop and it was automatically converted to a JPG. Would you say that is sharp?

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OP Lens_Goat Regular Member • Posts: 260
Re: Anyone "graduate" to Sony 10-18 from Sigma 19?

Here are some edited mountain shots. All handheld.

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skanter
skanter Forum Pro • Posts: 15,126
Re: Anyone "graduate" to Sony 10-18 from Sigma 19?
5

One cannot compare a 19mm prime to a 10-18 zoom. The SWA FL from 10-16mm (15-24 eq) is entirely different frrom 19mm (29mm eq). It requires different shooting, composition, skills, etc. and the photos will look entirely different.

In my experience, the 10-18 is quite sharp enough for any application and print size, and wonderfully small and light as well.

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OP Lens_Goat Regular Member • Posts: 260
Re: Anyone "graduate" to Sony 10-18 from Sigma 19?

skanter wrote:

One cannot compare a 19mm prime to a 10-18 zoom. The SWA FL from 10-16mm (15-24 eq) is entirely different frrom 19mm (29mm eq). It requires different shooting, composition, skills, etc. and the photos will look entirely different.

In my experience, the 10-18 is quite sharp enough for any application and print size, and wonderfully small and light as well.

-- hide signature --

Awesome shots -- what focal lengths were these taken at?

How else will the photos look differently beyond the obvious focal length differences?

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skanter
skanter Forum Pro • Posts: 15,126
Re: Anyone "graduate" to Sony 10-18 from Sigma 19?

Lens_Goat wrote:

skanter wrote:

One cannot compare a 19mm prime to a 10-18 zoom. The SWA FL from 10-16mm (15-24 eq) is entirely different frrom 19mm (29mm eq). It requires different shooting, composition, skills, etc. and the photos will look entirely different.

In my experience, the 10-18 is quite sharp enough for any application and print size, and wonderfully small and light as well.

-- hide signature --

Awesome shots -- what focal lengths were these taken at?

Thanks. All 10mm - that's why I posted. You cannot get shots like this with 19mm.

How else will the photos look differently beyond the obvious focal length differences?

It takes skill and experience in shooting and composing with SWA lenses. Buy a 10-18, start enjoying and learning! It's a terrific lens, but does not take awesome photos by itself.

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OP Lens_Goat Regular Member • Posts: 260
Re: Anyone "graduate" to Sony 10-18 from Sigma 19?

skanter wrote:

Lens_Goat wrote:

skanter wrote:

One cannot compare a 19mm prime to a 10-18 zoom. The SWA FL from 10-16mm (15-24 eq) is entirely different frrom 19mm (29mm eq). It requires different shooting, composition, skills, etc. and the photos will look entirely different.

In my experience, the 10-18 is quite sharp enough for any application and print size, and wonderfully small and light as well.

-- hide signature --

Awesome shots -- what focal lengths were these taken at?

Thanks. All 10mm - that's why I posted. You cannot get shots like this with 19mm.

How else will the photos look differently beyond the obvious focal length differences?

It takes skill and experience in shooting and composing with SWA lenses. Buy a 10-18, start enjoying and learning! It's a terrific lens, but does not take awesome photos by itself.

-- hide signature --

Are many of the pictures on your portfolio website taken with the 10-18?

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skanter
skanter Forum Pro • Posts: 15,126
Re: Anyone "graduate" to Sony 10-18 from Sigma 19?

Lens_Goat wrote:

skanter wrote:

Lens_Goat wrote:

skanter wrote:

One cannot compare a 19mm prime to a 10-18 zoom. The SWA FL from 10-16mm (15-24 eq) is entirely different frrom 19mm (29mm eq). It requires different shooting, composition, skills, etc. and the photos will look entirely different.

In my experience, the 10-18 is quite sharp enough for any application and print size, and wonderfully small and light as well.

-- hide signature --

Awesome shots -- what focal lengths were these taken at?

Thanks. All 10mm - that's why I posted. You cannot get shots like this with 19mm.

How else will the photos look differently beyond the obvious focal length differences?

It takes skill and experience in shooting and composing with SWA lenses. Buy a 10-18, start enjoying and learning! It's a terrific lens, but does not take awesome photos by itself.

-- hide signature --

Are many of the pictures on your portfolio website taken with the 10-18?

No, just a few. Info about focal lengths:

https://www.bhphotovideo.com/explora/photography/tips-and-solutions/understanding-focal-length

I would get a zoom lens (16-50 is fine) and shoot with different FLs for a while to understand how it works. This is far more important than "sharpness" or DXO tests.

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RGBCMYK Senior Member • Posts: 1,703
Re: Anyone "graduate" to Sony 10-18 from Sigma 19?
3

I used to own the Sigma 19 and once I got my 10-18 I never used it again.  I would say once you know how to use the 10-18 it is amazing.  When I say know how to use it I would never try and shoot it wide open but just stopping it down even 2/3 of a stop really helps and around f/8 it is amazing and I have made many 24x36 inch prints from it.  I would say probably 20- 25% of the images in my Instagram feed are with the 10-18 and the remainder are with the 24 1.8.  Yes there will be some distortion but LR clears it up wonderfully.

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OP Lens_Goat Regular Member • Posts: 260
Re: Anyone "graduate" to Sony 10-18 from Sigma 19?

RGBCMYK wrote:

I used to own the Sigma 19 and once I got my 10-18 I never used it again. I would say once you know how to use the 10-18 it is amazing. When I say know how to use it I would never try and shoot it wide open but just stopping it down even 2/3 of a stop really helps and around f/8 it is amazing and I have made many 24x36 inch prints from it. I would say probably 20- 25% of the images in my Instagram feed are with the 10-18 and the remainder are with the 24 1.8. Yes there will be some distortion but LR clears it up wonderfully.

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Very inspirational stuff and I added you on Instagram. Man -- I wish I could buy the 10-18 right now. Like I said in the opening, it is a lens I am aspiring towards and hopefully in a month (or so) I will have the funds for it.

Were any of your shots on Instagram taken with the Sigma 19?

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OpticsEngineer Veteran Member • Posts: 5,900
Re: Anyone "graduate" to Sony 10-18 from Sigma 19?
1

Yes, I would say that is sharp.   Also that shot has lots of nice horizontal and vertical lines to zoom in and look at.  They all look nice and uniform comparing vertical to horizontal structures.  You won't get that kind of performances from the Sony 10-18 even when you stop it down to f/8 like the shot you posted.

One can get interesting cool shots from the 10-18. It is sharp in the center.     But the 10-18 is not at its best for landscapes where one wants uniform sharpness across the whole image.

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OpticsEngineer Veteran Member • Posts: 5,900
Re: Anyone "graduate" to Sony 10-18 from Sigma 19?

Those four shots are quite nice and inviting.  Part of that feeling is the uniform sharpness across the frame.  it lets one feel like they could wander around in them.

One will lose that feeling where things get fuzzy toward the edges.   That is why the Sony 10-18 is not best for shots like those.

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Dennis Forum Pro • Posts: 17,704
Re: Anyone "graduate" to Sony 10-18 from Sigma 19?

Lens_Goat wrote:

Here are some edited mountain shots. All handheld.

I'll take a look at some recent shots with my 10-18 (I bought it used and haven't had it too long).  Personally, for photos in ideal circumstances (base ISO, fast shutter speed, stopped down) I don't find these to be terribly sharp.  Don't get me wrong, I'm not knocking them or suggesting that you need to do better ... but these don't strike me as examples of "sharpness you can only get with a prime" ...

Don't take my word for it until I can round up some samples, but I have to believe that the 10-18 can match or beat these.

- Dennis
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RGBCMYK Senior Member • Posts: 1,703
Re: Anyone "graduate" to Sony 10-18 from Sigma 19?
2

Very inspirational stuff and I added you on Instagram. Man -- I wish I could buy the 10-18 right now. Like I said in the opening, it is a lens I am aspiring towards and hopefully in a month (or so) I will have the funds for it.

Were any of your shots on Instagram taken with the Sigma 19?

This was with the Sigma 19 on my original NEX-7 and at f/2.8. Have a 20x print hanging that has amazing detail and is very sharp and for a contrasty scene holds up quite well. While I loved the Sigma 19 and the Sigma 30 in the beginning and I resisted spending for the 10-18 and the 24 1.8 they are the two best lenses in my opinion for how I shoot on the street. I have sold off the Sony 35 1.8, Sony 50, Sigma 19, and Sigma 30.

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Craig NC
Craig NC Contributing Member • Posts: 539
Re: Anyone "graduate" to Sony 10-18 from Sigma 19?
3

I have owned both.  I hate to bust anyone's bubble, but the 19mm Sigma is really not that sharp.  The 30mm and 60mm do much better.  Stopped down to f8 for landscape you will not see a difference and the CA is much less on the 10-18 zoom.  The OSS can be be nice to have too. The 10-18 is the best zoom there is for the A6000.

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OP Lens_Goat Regular Member • Posts: 260
Re: Anyone "graduate" to Sony 10-18 from Sigma 19?

OpticsEngineer wrote:

Those four shots are quite nice and inviting. Part of that feeling is the uniform sharpness across the frame. it lets one feel like they could wander around in them.

One will lose that feeling where things get fuzzy toward the edges. That is why the Sony 10-18 is not best for shots like those.

Thanks for the kind words but are you sure the 10-18 isn't comparable stopped down to like f/8?

Until the others followed, I thought you had spared me from further mulling this expensive purchase. Not to insinuate I did not want the others input, I seek candid, no holds barred opinions of the Sigma and the other lenses.

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OP Lens_Goat Regular Member • Posts: 260
Re: Anyone "graduate" to Sony 10-18 from Sigma 19?

Dennis wrote:

Lens_Goat wrote:

Here are some edited mountain shots. All handheld.

I'll take a look at some recent shots with my 10-18 (I bought it used and haven't had it too long). Personally, for photos in ideal circumstances (base ISO, fast shutter speed, stopped down) I don't find these to be terribly sharp. Don't get me wrong, I'm not knocking them or suggesting that you need to do better ... but these don't strike me as examples of "sharpness you can only get with a prime" ...

Don't take my word for it until I can round up some samples, but I have to believe that the 10-18 can match or beat these.

- Dennis
--
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Don't worry I'm not offended. Have you unearthed some 10-18 samples?

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Dennis Forum Pro • Posts: 17,704
Re: Anyone "graduate" to Sony 10-18 from Sigma 19?

Lens_Goat wrote:

Dennis wrote:

Lens_Goat wrote:

Here are some edited mountain shots. All handheld.

I'll take a look at some recent shots with my 10-18 (I bought it used and haven't had it too long). Personally, for photos in ideal circumstances (base ISO, fast shutter speed, stopped down) I don't find these to be terribly sharp. Don't get me wrong, I'm not knocking them or suggesting that you need to do better ... but these don't strike me as examples of "sharpness you can only get with a prime" ...

Don't take my word for it until I can round up some samples, but I have to believe that the 10-18 can match or beat these.

- Dennis
--
Gallery at http://kingofthebeasts.smugmug.com

Don't worry I'm not offended. Have you unearthed some 10-18 samples?

Uploaded them last night ...

First up, a couple shots with the 10-18. I'll post a lower res sample and link to the original 4000x6000 px image:

10-18 at 14/8

Full res:
https://kingofthebeasts.smugmug.com/Other/For-forum-posts/n-MDV7N/i-fHhbXB5/O

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10-18 at 18/8

Full res:
https://kingofthebeasts.smugmug.com/Other/For-forum-posts/n-MDV7N/i-s3Sgh4P/O

10-18 at 12/8

Full res:
https://photos.smugmug.com/Other/For-forum-posts/n-MDV7N/i-MTPNR95/0/28d0694a/O/i-MTPNR95.jpg

Next up, just for the sake of comparison, a couple similar shots taken with the 18-200:

18-200 at 37/5.6

Full res:
https://photos.smugmug.com/Other/For-forum-posts/n-MDV7N/i-wRXQRwH/0/3617d30f/O/i-wRXQRwH.jpg

18-200 at 20/6.3

Full res:
https://photos.smugmug.com/Other/For-forum-posts/n-MDV7N/i-ms7m464/0/e7cb92df/O/i-ms7m464.jpg

And finally, for a little more context, a shot with the very sharp Sigma 30/1.4:

Sigma 30/1.4 at 30/13

Full res:
https://photos.smugmug.com/Other/For-forum-posts/n-MDV7N/i-PsL7kDq/0/083dba84/O/i-PsL7kDq.jpg

I wonder if jpeg compression has affected these (and yours) ... to my eye, these don't look quite as sharp as they did after editing in Lightroom, before exporting them.  (I used a setting of 70 and the files were still pretty big).  Anyway, see what you think - you can probably see a little more "smeary" details in the corners of these shots versus your Sigma, and the photos aren't apples-to-apples, but you might get an idea of whether you'd be happy with the 10-18.

- Dennis
--
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