Sigma 10-20

Joined
Apr 22, 2007
Messages
317
Location
San Diego
I would like to buy a wide angle zoom lens. The Nikon 12-24 is certainly an option, but the Sigma 10-20 also seems to have its share of fans. I would appreciate the comments of anyone who has used both. I know the Sigma is a variable aperture while the 12-24 is fixed at f/4, but I am more interesed in sharpness, IQ, CA, distortion, etc. Please offer any comments you think would help with this decision. Of course the price of the Sigma is also more attractive than the Nikon, but price isn't everything.

Thanks in advance for your help.
Ron
 
Joined
Jan 2, 2007
Messages
966
Location
Nottingham, UK
The Sigma is known for it's lack of distortion (infact it's amazing considering the 10mm focal length) and if that's your main deciding factor then it's the best option. But has more CA and is less sharp than the Nikkor or Tokina - especially in the corners, which is why I went for the Nikkor, but they're all good choices.
 
Joined
Apr 22, 2007
Messages
317
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San Diego
Weiran-
Thanks for the reply. According to the review that Jaymc referred me to, one of the strong points of the Sigma is its lack of CA?! Intreresting observations. Thoughts on this.
 
Joined
Apr 22, 2007
Messages
317
Location
San Diego
Thanks for the tip on Photozone. I've never beet to that site before. Sure is a lot of information. I'll need to digest that for a while. As always there is alot of information/opinions about lens. I guess it more depends on what you need and the kind of images you take. Sure is fun talking about it though!
Thanks
 
Joined
Aug 13, 2006
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Berlin, Old Europe
Photozone is okay, but they do have two things that bug me. First they only test lenses that people offer to send them for testing and second all of their tests are done shooting flat test charts. The problem i have with number 1 is that I think it is human nature to be much more likely to send in your lens to be tested if you suspect it has a problem than you would be if you love it & the problem I have with number 2 is that some lenses especially wide angle lenses do not do well on flat test charts because of field curvature, but they do very well in the real world. I would suggest that if you are going to use photozone as a reference that you also compare what you find at photozone with other sites such as the reviews by Thom Hogan, Bjorn Rorslett & the reviewers at the R&L Nikkor tables. If you are not familiar with these sites just Google them
Valid points, although the second one wasn't apparent to me. Will have it in mind for the future.

The first point is a real dilemma. Getting lenses from the manufacturer directly for testing is also not the best because you will mostly get proven to be "best" samples which might show the opposite.
Best would be to get several(!) samples bought at different shops, but who can afford that?
What I liked about photozone is that there are also quite a few non Nikkors being tested. If you need to save some dollars or euros and are looking into these as an alternative, I find it harder to find good reviews which compare them to nikkors.
Thanks for the pointer to R&L, didn't knew that site yet.
 
Joined
Jan 2, 2007
Messages
966
Location
Nottingham, UK
Weiran-
Thanks for the reply. According to the review that Jaymc referred me to, one of the strong points of the Sigma is its lack of CA?! Intreresting observations. Thoughts on this.
A few reviews I read while trying to decide between the four (including the Tamron) said CA was an issue, although it isn't terrible and quite easy to correct too. The sharpness of the Nikkor and Tokina swung me towards their direction though, sharpness is something you can't "add" later, while CA and distortion are correctable.
 
Joined
Feb 28, 2006
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Seattle WA
I love my 10-20mmm

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Joined
Apr 5, 2007
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Hamilton, Ontario
That is too organized of an area to be really used :)

I am debating my next purchase and the Sigma 10-20 is the leader at the moment, with the Tokina 12-24 coming up fast. But after seeing some of the shots on here, it might be no contest. Plus the fact that Tokina lenses are a pain to get in Canada (usually grey market).
 
Joined
Feb 4, 2006
Messages
6,690
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On a Big Island Down Under...
Hi Ron..

Really, good copies of either the Nikon, Tokina & Sigma lenses will give you great photos as they all have there positives and problems. So what you have to choose is do you require or want the extra 2mm the Sigma has to offer or do you prefer the bit more at the long end to 24mm. The extra 2mm will get a lot more in to the photo, but then the 24mm long end will give you the ability to leave it on the camera for those people or everyday shots.

Next is if you want to go for the 12-24 range (Tokina and Nikon), you will then have to decide will the extra ~$500 for the Nikon is worth it, or can you live with the occasional bit of CA (easily fix PP) and lens flare, or you require the best you can get. For me I chose the Tokina over the sigma as I wanted the FL it offered and I didn't feel that the huge difference in $$$ to Nikon was worth it for me. So far I have been extremely happy with its IQ and performance. If I had an unlimited bank account I probably would have still got the Tokina...

So the final choice is still up to you to answer these questions, and you will have the lens you want or require... Good luck with your final decision as all these lens will work well....
 
Joined
Nov 18, 2006
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33
Location
Wellington NZ.
Along with the gain on the wide end, there's the overlap at the long end to consider. This helped me decide on the Sigma.
 
Joined
Jan 2, 2007
Messages
966
Location
Nottingham, UK
Tony: overlap isn't always a bad thing, infact I use the longer end of my Nikkor (if you can call it long!) quite a lot even though I have a 17-50mm lens, just because it's a very useful focal length and it prevents me having to change lenses (which I hate doing).
 
Joined
Feb 28, 2006
Messages
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Seattle WA
It's the only escape from... 'the rest of the house'.. my cave!


That is too organized of an area to be really used :)

I am debating my next purchase and the Sigma 10-20 is the leader at the moment, with the Tokina 12-24 coming up fast. But after seeing some of the shots on here, it might be no contest. Plus the fact that Tokina lenses are a pain to get in Canada (usually grey market).
 
Joined
May 2, 2007
Messages
163
Location
Australia, Blue Mountains
10-20 sigma is the one!

I took this about 6 weeks ago.
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Joined
May 2, 2007
Messages
163
Location
Australia, Blue Mountains
Hey Bozola..

Try this with the super wide lenses, kneel down a bit so that the lens is exactly half the height above the floor from floor to ceiling, then aim at a similar height on the other side of the room. This will keep your horizontal plane dead level and will all but eliminate any distortion. Try using a tape measure to start with and use a post it note or a piece of masking tape at both reference points. You will be amazed at the difference in the way you start to look at things in future. If you want the perspective from your normal eye height, then aim at the same height as your eyes would be at the other side of the room, this again will keep the horizontal plane pretty true. The sigma will pick the floor up so don't worry about that and you can crop any spare ceiling away later. I hope I haven't stepped over the mark here, just that it took me ages to work out why my shots were looking a bit suspect when I was shooting at 10mm early in the piece. :smile:
 
Joined
Feb 28, 2006
Messages
1,401
Location
Seattle WA
Dave,

I am already impressed with the amount that I can 'see' with the lens.

To improve it, that is cool. Great information.

Thanks!

Frederic
 

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