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Sigma introduced a 170-500mm lens

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Scott Sherman, Nov 23, 2005.

  1. I wondered what thoughts or discussion this lens might conjer up here since we have so many who want a long lens but can't spend or justify the $5000 or more for it. I don't know the price, but I am guessing it will be much less and possibly pretty good optics. Sigma has put out some good lenses in the past. If you shoot or want to shoot an occassional bird or lighthouse or surfer etc. but are not willing to make long lenses a lifestyle, this might make a good alternative to some of the Nikon lenses and it seems to have a wide enough range to be used for many situations a dedicated long or long zoom like the 200-4oo. It is not a fast lens but that will probably make it more portable for us who are not in our primes or a little out of shape.

  2. Sigma has waaay too many overlapping lenses! All these lenses are small aperture, but are they any good? I'd rather Sigma releases some fixed f/4 tele-zooms or something.
  3. Flew


    Jan 25, 2005

    I pretty much agree with Jonathan here. Sigma already offers the excellent 50-500mm 'Bigma' (I had one and sold it, thinking it wasn't 'Pro enough'). I've taken and seen some excellent shots with the Bigma.

    Having said that though, the 170-500 is about $220 less than the 50-500, and from what I've read, it looks like it doesn't change length as you zoom (the 50-500 does, making it less attractive for those that use a gimbal head like the Wimberley). These two factors may make the 170-500 attractive to many buyers. I couldn't verify from the searches that I did whether the 170-500 maintains AF with the 1.4 or 2.0 TC's from Sigma, although I would guess that it doesn't. Might be a good choice for those of us that don't have the $$$$ for a longer 500mm + lens right now. :smile:
  4. You will find that these "new" lenses from Sigma are not "new" at all. The "new" bit is the DG designation, which is nothing more than a new coating process to supposedly reduce flare and internal reflections, specifically for Digital Cameras.

    For example, KEH has 4 of these used, the non-DG version, for $449-$525. The problem with these lenses for birding is that they are slow to focus, although they are much lighter than, for example, my Sigma 500 f4.5 HSM.

    There are alternatives at less than half the cost of the Nikon lenses, the Sigma I have for example. When they introduced the "new" one, the price went from $3200 to $4100, which is loony in my opinion when nothing mechanically or optically changed except the lens coating, but you can still occasionaly find these in the mid-$2,000 range. The older version, non-HSM so slower focusing like the non-AFS Nikon version, can be found at just under the $2,000 mark.

    It is a tough nut to crack at the "long" end, but I would really suggest that anyone considering these "long-range zooms" find one they do a focus-speed test on. And I really wish the announcements didn't indicate that these are somehow brand-new additions to the Sigma line rather than just a retouch of existing lense.
  5. Yeah, Bigma is already a great lens at a cheap price. All these other lenses are just overlap.
  6. Cherokee


    Nov 27, 2005
    Long Lens

    Hi Scott,
    This is just a suggestion from a new member, but a long-time Nikon user: Over my 26 plus years I have bought and sold every brand of lens currently available.
    Conclusion: Everytime I have strayed from Nikon lenses, I have regretted it and felt like I wasted my money. This is just one pro's opinion. 'Nuff said.
  7. JeffKohn


    Apr 21, 2005
    Houston, TX
    I find this pretty annoying. I can _almost_ understand the marketing weenies at Sigma touting these lenses as brand new in their press releases, but what gets me is that even Phil's little blurb about the lens gives no hint that it's just a DG retread even though he surely knows better.

    I think if Sigma is going to go to the trouble of updating all their lenses with DG, they should go ahead an make some real improvements. How about adding OS to the Bigma, or OS + HSM to this 170-500; that would actually be newsworthy and get a lot of people's attention I think.
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