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Sigma 170-500mm

hatrick1960 12 36
29 Mar 2006 9:59AM
I would love a Canon 100-400mm but can't afford one so I think i've decided on the above lens. I know Sigma have just introduced a new model but i think there are quite a few second hand 'older models' on the market.
Is this a good second choice to the Canon, would love some advice & / or some pics from the Sigma.
It would be used mainly on wildlife etc with a few sport shots.

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Chris_H 14 1.5k 1
29 Mar 2006 10:07AM
I have used one of the old 170-500mm and its a good lens although I did find it a bit slow and the focusing was not the best but its easy to manual focus.

Have you also looked at the sigma 100-300mm F4 its not got the same range but on a crop camera would still be good for wildlife and would be fast enough to use for motorsport.

nick l 13 26 United Kingdom
29 Mar 2006 11:04AM

I looked at the 170-500mm but reading reviews pointed more towards the 50-500mm Bigma but not seen a review of the new version - in the end I gave up as I would always regret it and bought the 100-400L great lens -the image stabiliser helps a lot - the sigmas are good lenses but if you can stretch to it save up for the 100-400L
IanA 14 3.0k 12 England
29 Mar 2006 11:55AM
The new version of the 50-500mm !

And a shot taken with the older 170-500mm which is not quite as good as the 50-500mm but not quite as expensive either.

The 170-500mm AF is awful but as mentioned earlier, it is easy to manual focus with it and that is the way I use it.


mattw 13 5.2k 10 United Kingdom
29 Mar 2006 6:23PM

The 170-500mm AF is awful but as mentioned earlier, it is easy to manual focus with it and that is the way I use it.

I always rated the image quality of my old 170-500 highly, but I fully agree this this statement.

Also note that this is not a lens you can hand hod except in VERY good light!

tomcat 12 6.4k 15 United Kingdom
31 Mar 2006 9:40PM
If you can afford to splash the cash I would go for the 50-500mm...Purchased one a couple of weeks ago and I am over the moon with it....Never had cause to use the MF on it yet as the AF is pretty damn good...

Mark_Readman 12 922
31 Mar 2006 11:50PM
The Sigma 80-400 os is the pick of the bunch, very sharp and probally the best stabaliser on the market, you can shoot handheld at 400 mm at 15ms if you have a steady hand and certainly at 50ms, slightly more expensive than the 50-500 but worth every penny and becoming the "secret tool" of many pappparazi photographers, for a start its black and inconspicious and secondly its sharp with good contrast and has a 400mm reach which is ideal with a 1.3 or 1.6 sensor,
I carry one at all times on a 20d body in my rucksack, I prefer it slightly over the 70-200 canon is,unless the light is really poor..
ok it is not as nice looking and just slightly less sharp, but it has reach which in a grab shot is king
Andy_Britten Junior Member 12 96 England
6 Apr 2006 12:04PM
Wife bought me the new 170-500mm Sigma for christmas. Have a look at my portfolio if you want. Might help. It doesn't lock when you carry it so it slides out to it's full length, which is a pain. Though it is a good lens.
tepot 13 4.4k United Kingdom
6 Apr 2006 12:08PM
Ade (osman123) uses the 50-500mm bigma and says it's a very nice sharp lens although needs a tripod as it's a heavy beast, thats what i am buying when i get some spare cash Smile
StrayCat Plus
13 18.8k 3 Canada
6 Apr 2006 12:28PM
I'd go for the Nikon 80-400mm VR if I were you. I have never had it on a tripod. Focus is slow, but the build and reliability are excellent. I can hand hold @ 400/600mm at as slow as 1/10 sec. Look at Greg Lazarro's profile, after he got the 80-400 he seldom used the 50-500.
tepot 13 4.4k United Kingdom
6 Apr 2006 12:30PM
the Nikon 80-400mm is 1/2 as much again though, over the Sigma 50-500, is it THAT much better?
StrayCat Plus
13 18.8k 3 Canada
6 Apr 2006 12:35PM
Terry, the pros use it. I've never used the 50-500, but the versatility alone of the 80-400 makes it well worth it. I agonized over the decision, and I'm glad I got the Nikon, it's amazing, and the VR is awesome. BTW, Greg also had the Sigma 80-400mm OS for awhile and returned it and got a second Nikon, so he and his wife have it.
canon_stu 14 140 4 England
6 Apr 2006 12:41PM
hi there i use the 170-500 sigma and have done for two years now,and find it an excellent lense, the AF isnt that bad for the size of lense in my opinion, i have also used a 100-400L and the AF on that i would say was comparable on my eos body to the sigma,but what you have to remember though is is the 100-400 really worth the extra 500 pounds than the sigma costs?
StrayCat Plus
13 18.8k 3 Canada
6 Apr 2006 12:42PM
Here's a straightforward review by a tog I have a lot of respect for.
tepot 13 4.4k United Kingdom
6 Apr 2006 12:57PM
reading the review, i think i'll stick with the Siggy 50-500 and save some cash Wink

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