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Old Jun 21, 2005, 3:14 AM   #1
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this lens doesn't get much press in this forumn.. so i thought i would write this up for those that aren't familiar with it...

well, after many months of trying to get a new telephoto.. (car accident, etc got in the way fiinancially).. i finally sold some equipment and got up enough extra cash to buy one.. i have decided to go with the sigma 80-400 OS.. and this is my reasoning..

1. speed- it may not be the fastest lens in the world at 5.6 through alot of its zoom range, but i don't shoot any sports to speak of, nor do i do much action.. mostly will be used for wildlife portraits and random things that don't move too fast.. i will be getting a 70-200 2.8 before winter if i need the speed, so i think these two will make a very nice "outdoor/indoor" combination..

2. OS - this is nice because there are times i don't want to have my tripod/monopod with me, and this really makes handholding at 400mm much easier.. even when there is enough light for decently fast shutter speeds, this extra little insurance for a sharp picture is nice..

3. lack of hsm- this is one reason i was tempted by the 100-400L, but its not worth the money for the types of things i will use THIS lens for.. from all i have read, it is not a bad peformer despite using a simpler DC motor.. plus a little prefocusing sure helps out if needed..

4. Image Quality- while this may not match the 100-300 f4.0 for sharpness as is evident in the MTFs, when viewed subjectively via photosig,pbase, etc.. it is more than sharp enough and has plenty of feather/fur detail.. and its color and contrast is just beautiful.. and the bokeh looks pretty nice too..

5. Big/Heavy- its slightly larger and heavierthan the 100-400L.. but thats not a real concern of mine as its a small price to pay for a handholdable 400mm lens..

in the end it came down to the Sigma 80-400 OS, Sigma 100-300 f4.0, and the Canon 100-400L..

the sigma 100-300 f4.0 is a bit redundant since i plan to get the 70-200 2.8 and i really wanted the extra reach afforded by the extra 100mm at the long end..

the canon 100-400L is nice, but the usm is not worth the extra 400USD for MY specific purposes.. plus having an extra 20mm of wide angle could come in handy at times as well..

so basically that is my decision making on this purchase.. i have presented it to (1) give users unaware of the 80-400 OS another option (2) help out those considering a new tele my rationale in the hopes that it could help them in some small way..

Best Regards to All, Dustin

p.s. will be sure to addendum as i remember things i am forgetting..
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Old Jun 21, 2005, 9:28 AM   #2
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Probably a good decision for you as long as Sigma can keep it compatible with Canons bodies. I've been down that road before with that company. Hopefully it is a lens they will keep in their lineup for a long time so when the time comes, and it will if past experience is any indicator, thatit needs to be re-chipped you'll still be able to have it done. Canon's history of updating it's technology, and that's not a bad thing,and Sigma's inability to keep up over the long haulareawell documentedfact.Today Sigma seems to be on the right track as the problems don't seem to come up as much, but you only need to have it happen to you once at the price of that lens... three times in my case, but fortunatelywith less expensive lenses.


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Old Jun 21, 2005, 11:51 AM   #3
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The OS lens is actually VERY good optically and is right there with the 100-400L. The AF isn't all that bad at all; I know several shooters who use it for birds in flight (AI Servo). I think you've made a good decision. Enjoy the light.
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Old Jun 21, 2005, 12:08 PM   #4
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Yes, I think you have a good lens from the short time I was able to handle it at a trade show. :-)

The re-chipping used to be a problem with the older non-EX lenses, have not heard of it with the newer lenses and especially not in the EX series.
At any rate Sigma did it for free when it occured.

Peter.

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Old Jun 21, 2005, 12:25 PM   #5
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Yes, they do it for free *IF* the lens is still a current production lens. That's why I made the comment about hoping it was a lens they keep in their line for a while. Oncea lens isout of production they do not offer the service (or even the chip to do it at cost)indefinitely. That was the problem I ran into. A discontinued lens and the word from Sigma was "so sorry, buy a new lens".
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Old Jun 21, 2005, 1:18 PM   #6
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:cart:That would be annoying.

What is the US warranty like?
In Canada the EX have a 7 year fix or replace with equivelant product.
So your good for at least 7 years with one :-).

Peter.
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Old Jun 21, 2005, 8:25 PM   #7
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i think the US warranty is a 4 year fix and replace on the EX series.. i could be remembering that wrong..

honestly, with the newer EX series, i have not read them having any of the same problems that need re-chipping like some of the older lenses.. so i am not overly concerned..

thank you all for your comments, i am looking forward to trying this one out.. i can see this staying on my camera a large percentage of the time, especially outdoors..

i will post some in one of the post your photo forumns when i get a chance to take it out for a day..


best regards, dustin

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Old Jun 21, 2005, 9:24 PM   #8
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Yeaaaa, wating for the results :!:

Peter.
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Old Jun 22, 2005, 12:22 AM   #9
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What timimg. Here's a post tonight regarding one of Sigma's expensive paperweights I once owned:

http://www.photo.net/bboard/q-and-a-...?msg_id=00CdJR
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Old Jun 22, 2005, 12:59 AM   #10
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Yes, a nice old vintage 1997 lens from the era that Sigma had known compatibility issues :-)

It is from a time prior to the Sigmas EX pro series. I had some of those back then too, the non EX were not very good. :-)

Peter.
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