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Old Jan 9, 2005, 11:30 AM   #1
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I was all perpared to buy the Canon 70-200 F4L. Then I starteds seeing all these photos shot with the Sigma 70-200 2.8. Now I am confused again please help.

I currently shoot with the Canon Digital Rebel and have the kit lens and the 55-200 USM. I plan on buying the Canon 20D (one day). Until then I want to invest in the best lenses I can get. I though that was going to be Canon L-series in the F4 range because that is what is inmy price range.

However, it looks like I can get F2.8 lenses in my price range if I can get my mind to break free of Canon Marketing and explore third party.
  1. Is Sigma EX as good as Canon L in sharpness[/*]
  2. Is F2.8 that big of a difference over F4[/*]
  3. Do Sigma lenes give the distance information required for 20D and 580EX flash 1.6 magnificationcorrection.[/*]
  4. How big of an issues is 6' minimal focus over 4'
[/*]
I am so tired of learning the hard way by buying something cheap and then outgrowing it.
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Old Jan 9, 2005, 12:36 PM   #2
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Some more things to think about... :idea:

1) Instead of asking if the Canon is sharper than the Sigma think of it this way. Is the Sigma sharp enough to meet your needs and expectations? Here's an example. This was over 1/2 way zoomed and wide open 2.8 at i'm guessing maybe 60 to 75 feet. ISO 3200 @ 1/200 and handheld (i know you've already commented on this pic but I really like it but stay with me here..



Ok.. now here is a 100% crop from the original. The ONLY think I did was rotate it.



So again is that sharp enough? Even if the Canon is sharper would it matter that much? To me it is sharp enough for my needs.

2) In this case it would have meant the difference between 1/200 and 1/100... and this was a pretty well lit gym! At 1/100 i doubt even I could have pulled this shot off handheld...

3) I don't know about this... since I never use a flash with it... sorry...

4) The difference 6' and 4' is about 2 feet. Literally... I take a step back. I realize of course there are time when you can't step back but then again if i'm less than 6 feet away from a subject chances are I don't have the Sigma on my camera...

It's a tough decision... but for me 2.8 was mandatory and the Sigma just fit a lot better into my budget than the Canon...

hth,
john
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Old Jan 10, 2005, 12:55 AM   #3
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Quote:
Some more things to think about... :idea:
Thanks Mr_ Saginaw but you are the one who caused all this confusion for me in the first place. I never even consifered Sigma until I saw your posts. Then I started researching and started seeing other really nice photos also shot with this particualr Sigma Lens. I then started realizing F2.8 can be as important as sharpness if you can't use flash or strobes which I almost always use. also brokeh is nicer as NHL says.

Again based on information from NHL I looked up the price of the tripod collar for the Canon F4L it runs $120.00 plus the case an extra $34.00 and I don't know if you need the lens hood but its extra also. The Sigma comes standard with tripod collar, carrying case so they came out to about the same price in the end, but the Sigma is still a stop faster. I just know if I get an F4 within a year I will discover I needed the F2.8. I have not really defined my business yet so I want to make sure I purchase equipment that gives me the most options.

I think for the first time I will stray from Canon and go for this Sigma lens and L-series will just have to wait. I need quality product more than fancy names.

Thanks for saving me some money and or disappointments as with the Canon 55-200or 420ex.
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Old Jan 16, 2005, 10:39 PM   #4
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Here are my tests of the Canon 70-200 F2.8L VS Sigma 70-200 F2.8 EX

Both of these where shot at 200MM F2.8 at 1/15 with Canon Digital Rebel and one Alien Bee AB800 strobe. Light was set with Sekonic L-358.

Overall I think the Canon was sharper but color for both was the same. Also, my tripod was too week for these big lenses so I may have otten a little bit of shake when pressing shutter.

PS

I have decided to buy the Sigma, the Canon F2.8 was not $400.00 better and the Canon 70-200 F4L can't compete with 2.8 at the same price.

Well Judge for your selves Here is the Sigma 70-200 F2.8 EX
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Old Jan 16, 2005, 10:40 PM   #5
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Here is the Canon 70-200 F2.8L.

Little sharper, but colors look the same.
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Old Jan 25, 2005, 11:53 AM   #6
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Looks really good for 3200 ISO

style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #000000"I think I will buy the Sigma with the 1.4 and 2x teleconverters

style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #000000"with hope that it will be ok for the AF
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Old Jan 27, 2005, 4:41 PM   #7
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Quote:
I think I will buy the Sigma with the 1.4 and 2x teleconverters
Exactly why I purchased the Sigma. I was going to buy the Canon 70-200 F4L but decided to go with the faster lens so I would still get F4 with the 1.4 extender. This is lik have two lenses to me both being really sharp and fast.
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Old Feb 25, 2005, 9:45 PM   #8
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minutephotos.com wrote:
Quote:
Here is the Canon 70-200 F2.8L.

Little sharper, but colors look the same.
Not so fast - again MTF doesn't lie

At 200mm the Canon's sharper: :idea:
again only the bottom curves count (ie @ f/2.8 ) on Canon, the lens is closed down to f/8 for the upper curves:




At 70mm the Sigma's sharper:
... However the Sigma is better on both focal lenghts @ the edges (for full-frame camera)




In practice -> your mileage may vary depending on the focal lenght the lens is used at! :G :lol: :-)
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Old Feb 26, 2005, 6:43 AM   #9
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NHL,

When comparing MTF between Canon & Sigma my understanding is this:

Thick black line (Canon) <=> Red Line (Sigma)
Thin black line (Canon) <=> Green Line (Sigma)

Loosely speaking - the red line shows contrast and the green line shows resolution. Contrast + resolution => human perception of "sharpness" (all other factors being equal).

How closely the dotted line follows the solid line is an indicator of how good the bokeh is.

The blue lines on the Canon charts are the performance at f8 and are not shown on Sigma charts.

Is that how you understand it?

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Old Feb 26, 2005, 8:34 PM   #10
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I have only one word of advice, Whichever lense you get, get the 2.8. The sigma 2.8 is a good lense, the Canonn IMO is a little better. It also has the IS which is real. If you can't afford the Canon, get the sigma 2.8. YOu will not be sorry hyou did.

Good luck with your descision.
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