Anyone here use the Bigma (Sigma 50-500)

Mar 9, 2005
Would like to start doing some telephoto work, but not spend a fortune. Has anyone used this lens? If so can you give me some info on how to use the lens and what its pros and cons are. I've heard decent things about it, but would appreciate some opinions from this forum.
Jan 26, 2005
San Jose, CA
pbenedic said:
Would like to start doing some telephoto work, but not spend a fortune.

Now that you've laid out the big bucks for a d2x, I don't think you should compromise its results with bargain lenses. From what I've read, the extreme resolution of the d2x magnifies lens flaws, and requires top glass for good results.

I've seen some great results from the Bigma, but even its fans admit that it's not too sharp above 400mm, is very bulky/heavy, and requires a tripod at all times. It's also pretty slow, with a max aperture rating of f/6.3 at the long end.

I think the Nikkor 300/4 would be a much better starter telephoto, as many of the outstanding shots on the Cafe's birding forum demonstrate. Check out Backdoctor's work with the 300/4 - tc14e as great examples of the capabilities of that combo. And note that Craig H. has listed a 300/4 on the For Sale forum for $700.

Jan 25, 2005
Huntsville, Alabama

I have a Sigma 50-500mm APO HSM f/4 and I like it. I have been using it for a few months now. This lens was Frank's (aka Flew), so he might be able to give you some more input on it. For long distance shots it's great I can not complain. I like it just for's long reach! The lens is fast and quiet (not that quiet matters). I don't plan on getting rid of mine anytime soon. Hope this helps. :) :) :) :) :)
Feb 2, 2005
Maple Bay, Duncan, BC, Canada
Real Name
Andreas Berglund
Why not consider the Nikon 80-400 VR? In the right hands for example Janet Zinn's it is a killer lens.

Not wanting to compare my humble efforts to Janet's but I'm pretty happy with it. (shot with the D100 I had then
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Feb 21, 2005
Ottawa, Ontario
The Sigma 80-400mm aint half bad either (and it's ~$300 cheaper than the Nikon):

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Choices, choices, choices.

Mar 31, 2005
Toronto Canada
Hi Pat, I tried the Bigma for a few weeks and took it back. Far too big and heavy for carrying around, wasn't all that crazy about the shots over 400 - they seemed kinda flat and lacked punch. Now I'm sure there are other 50-500 users out there who would say I just didn't know how to use it and that probably is the case. It's tough to base keep-ability on a two week opening but that's all I had.
I finally decided on the 70-200/2.8 VR and got the 1.4 and the 2.0 Nikon converters. The Bigma requires a tripod and that just ain't gonna work in a kayak!
You'll have to make your decision based on where/how you'd use it, what length you REALLY need in your shots, etc. Some folks love it, some folks don't. I'd highly suggest the "try it and only keep it if you really like it" approach, if that's available to you. Hope this helps, Cheers, Sandi

Mick V

Hi, i got the 70-300 g for xmas (crap), i px it in on a 80-400 vr, for hand held shots this is one excellent lens. :D
Apr 24, 2005
Denver, CO
I have a Bigma :) and have been happy with the results.

This was with a Sigma 50-500 + Sigma 2xTC.

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This was handheld 500mm, f6.8, ISO400.

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Maybe I just got a really good one.
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