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Sigma 150-500 (anyone used it with some pics)

Discussion in 'Lens Lust' started by wgilles, Sep 15, 2008.

  1. wgilles

    wgilles

    Apr 25, 2008
    NJ
    Thinking of getting this Bigma. Anyone have some pics to convince me?
     
  2. Got one recently - can't post pics yet as I have not used photo sites. Mine seems sharp enough - got some great shots of tack-sharp branches with fuzzy birds! Seems the operator doesn't recognize that DOF at 500mm F/8 is narrower than a chickadee at 30 feet! Definitely a learning curve here - as I suspect, with any long lens.
    Sorry I can't help more.
     
  3. bharada

    bharada

    352
    May 25, 2006
    SF Bay Area, CA
    The copy I got from Amazon.com front focused from 120-250mm and back focused from 300-500mm. I had to send it back since my D700 can only compensate for one or the other.

    That said, what was in focus was pretty sharp with the lens wide open.

    100% crop at 500 mm | 1/250 sec at f / 6.3 | ISO 400

    _D7B5714_1.
    NIKON D700    ---    500mm    f/6.3    1/250s    ISO 400


    To bad that to get this close to correct focus at 500mm the short end would front focus by several inches.
     
  4. wgilles

    wgilles

    Apr 25, 2008
    NJ
    Wow, that looks amazing.
     
  5. bharada

    bharada

    352
    May 25, 2006
    SF Bay Area, CA
    I think at 300mm it was already at f/6 so AF got iffy in the shade.

    If you can keep the lens in the general vicinity of what you're after AF lock is fast, but going lock-to-lock, near to infinity, was about a 1.5-2 second wait.

    One final note, Sigma's HSM and OS are not silent like their Nikon counterparts. The OS in particular will get your attention in a quiet room. :eek: 
     
  6. leifw

    leifw

    472
    Jul 25, 2007
    Bozeman, MT
    On the bright side, you can always tell if it's turned on or off easily.
     
  7. leifw

    leifw

    472
    Jul 25, 2007
    Bozeman, MT
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 15, 2017
  8. johnmh

    johnmh

    771
    Nov 21, 2007
    Greater NYC
    You NEED good light with this lens - you're starting at f/5-6.3........

    I bought this lens wanting an easy 'carry' long lens - my 200-400 is great but too heavy and large for carrying around backcountry. I was hoping for an updated 80-400 AF-S but gave up waiting. It did what I wanted it to do on the last two vacations.

    This lens gives you your money's worth - I just wish they had put another $500 into it. It's got OS - which works well enough. It is better than the Tokina 80-400 (costs $6-700), probalby not as good as the Nikon 80-400 ($1400) image wise though it focuses faster IMO and has a little longer reach. Compared to other options, it's priced appropriately.

    Impressed a few other photographers in Rocky Mountain shooting elk with me - you COULD get away with hand holding at 500 though a monopod is a good idea. Anyone else was using a tripod for their 400 or 500 zooms.

    It was also small enough that you could leave it on the back seat and grab it while in the car if something surprised you..... happened with bear a few times in Montana.

    Don't think about using a TC with this unless you've got a great eye or manual focusing screen - no AF even with a 1.4TC, not enough light. Tried it with a Sigma 1.4 TC and modified Nikon 2.0TC on a D70 with a Katzeye... mixed results - my eye to blame I expect... hard to focus manually on a D70 - even with the Katzeye - small dark view. Time to upgrade the D200 - should improve things. A tripod would probably be a good idea as well if you're using a TC.

    As noted, I just wish they'd spent a little more on this lens... Will probably still go for an updated 80-400 when it finally comes out...... should make a perfect compliment to the 16-85 for hiking.

    I WILL say that this lens let me get lots of shots I would not have gotten otherwise..... the 70-300 I was also carrying was not long enough and if I WAS carrying the 200-400, it would've taken taken far more time to get it out and mounted... I did MUCH better using that lens for fixed shots - cliff dwelllings and the like, and will go back to the 200-400 for Zoo visits (more contorlled circumstances) but - reminder - the 200-400 costs 5x as much to give you f/4 in a substantially larger/heavier package.
     
  9. Hi Will.

    I'm using this lens for a couple of weeks (and several hunderts of shots), and I'm still very pleased with the results.

    Sure, a Nikon 200-400 would be better, but looking at the price tags, it's not competitor to the Sig.

    Most of the recent teleshots on my pbase-site are made with this lens, so may be you'll like to have a look there ...

    Regards

    Mattes
     
  10. RayLarson

    RayLarson

    476
    Mar 27, 2007
    Pawtucket, RI
    These were some of my first shots with this lens, under less than ideal light. I think it's a great buy for the money. It takes some getting used to but it performs well.

    David Ortiz at McCoy Stadium Pawtucket, RI

    2681703035_161033f8db_b.

    2682520996_f18689e99e_b.

    2681708515_64b0524a36_b.

    Honor Guard at McCoy

    2682525754_96305c7ae1_b.
     
  11. wgilles

    wgilles

    Apr 25, 2008
    NJ
    Ray,
    About how far away were you? Row number?
     
  12. RayLarson

    RayLarson

    476
    Mar 27, 2007
    Pawtucket, RI
    I was on the field...sidelines with a monopod.

    First pix at 500mm f6.3 at 1/800 ISO 1600

    Second pix 150mm f5 at 1/800 ISO 1000

    Third Pix 270mm f6 at 1/320 ISO 1600

    Fourth Pix 290mm f6 at 1/800 ISO 1600

    Taken with a D80
    I find my copy to be sharp thru the whole range
     
  13. Randy

    Randy

    May 11, 2006
    50-500 or 150-500
    which way do you want to be convinced ?

    I had a 50-500 and it was medicore at best.....

    I don't think there is an inexpensive way to get to 500

    for 420mm consider the nikon 300/4 + 1.4TC
     
  14. wgilles

    wgilles

    Apr 25, 2008
    NJ
    Well I was looking at the 150-500 because it has the OS drive...which I think would help considering its high fstop
     
  15. Here are some of my first shots with the 150-500 OS HSM which replaced my 170-500.
    Would like to have the 200-400 Nikkor but can't afford one and this is a good cheap way to get to 500mm.
    Taken today at the Detroit Zoo, all at ISO 400 on a monopod with OS off,
    somee minor adjustments in PSE5 quick fix

    500mm 1/500 f10 50% crop
    [​IMG]

    500mm 1/400 f10 minor crop
    [​IMG]

    150mm 1/320 f9 50% crop
    [​IMG]

    250mm 1/80 f5.6 25% crop
    [​IMG]
     
  16. leifw

    leifw

    472
    Jul 25, 2007
    Bozeman, MT
    Not in my experience. I still haven't seen many folks who've had good luck hand holding at 500 with this lens.
     
  17. bharada

    bharada

    352
    May 25, 2006
    SF Bay Area, CA
    Gave it another chance

    Well, I broke down and ordered another copy of the 150-500 from Amazon. Got it in on Thursday and either I drew a much better sample or UPS handled the delivery with much more care this time around.

    This one is better than my first sample in every way. Focus lock-to-lock is much faster—still not as fast as my 70-200 AF-S VR, but not 1.5+ seconds like the first sample. This copy did not require extreme compensation by the D700's AF Tune. And although when 500mm is dialed in it still has slight front focus at 150mm, it mainly presents itself at minimum focus distance.

    First, some shots from yesterday...

    Hand held @ 500 mm | 1/1000 sec at f / 10 | ISO 900
    _D7B7014.
    NIKON D700    ---    500mm    f/10.0    1/1000s    ISO 900


    100% crop...
    _D7B7014_1.
    NIKON D700    ---    500mm    f/10.0    1/1000s    ISO 900


    Hand held @ 500 mm | 1/1250 sec at f / 9.0 | ISO 200
    _D7B76913.
    NIKON D700    ---    500mm    f/9.0    1/1250s    ISO 200


    100% crop...
    _D7B76913_1.
    NIKON D700    ---    500mm    f/9.0    1/1250s    ISO 200


    Hand held @ 500 mm | 1/2500 sec at f / 9.0 | ISO 3200
    _D7B76930.
    NIKON D700    ---    500mm    f/9.0    1/2500s    ISO 3200


    100% crop...
    _D7B76930_1.
    NIKON D700    ---    500mm    f/9.0    1/2500s    ISO 3200


    I was going to go birding at the local park this morning, but it was too cloudy so sat in my backyard instead and saw this hummer taking a rest. These were shot wide open at ISO 6400 so I did some PP in Lightroom to clean the images up. These are all 100% crops.

    Hand held @ 500 mm | 1/500 sec at f / 6.3 | ISO 6400
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    So far the only real issue I've had is keeping the focus point on target when hand holding. Reviewing images on the LCD can be really humbling when the focus point is only in the vicinity of what I was aiming at when I pressed the shutter release. :redface:

    All in all I'd say this lens is pretty good bag for the buck. :biggrin:
     
  18. JohnK

    JohnK

    540
    Aug 6, 2006
    Pacific NW
    A 200-400 would be nice, but until the kids are out of the house I'll settle for the 150-500 OS.

    These are all hand held

    DSC_9215.

    100% crop of the crow, 400mm hand held, 1/320th F/8
    View attachment 253501

    View attachment 253502

    100% crop, 500mm 1/250th, F/8
    View attachment 253503

    500mm, 1/500th, F/6.3
    DSC_9957_Gray_Wolf_Fixed.
    NIKON D80    ---    500mm    f/6.3    1/500s    ISO 110


    Agreed, a little sharper and F/5.6 would have been nice and well worth another $500.

    I agree with this too. The 70-300VR is a very good lens, but reach of the Sigma lets me get shots that I wouldn't have with the 70-300.
     
  19. leifw

    leifw

    472
    Jul 25, 2007
    Bozeman, MT
    I stand corrected. I've now seen sharp hand held shots from this lens.
     
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