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Sigma 70-200mm f2.8 EX APO IF HSM

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Reviews Views Date of last review
153 548060 Jan 21, 2012
Recommended By Average Price
93% of reviewers $709.02
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
9.05
9.36
9.1
05_03_1_

Specifications:
Sigma's new Hyper Sonic Motors (H.S.M.) provide silent, responsive autofocus action with Canon, Sigma, and now Nikon AF cameras.
H.S.M. also permits manual adjustment of focus without the necessity of switching off the autofocus function.
Focus Free mechanism keeps the manual focus ring from spinning when the camera is autofocusing.
This new lens features apochromatic optical design and four elements composed of Special Low Dispersion (SLD) glass for high image contrast, resolution and color saturation.
The front barrel does not rotate during focusing, due to internal focusing system.
Internal zooming mechanism allows the lens length to remain constant during zooming.


 


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R. Francois
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Registered: Jun 11, 2006
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 4727
Review Date: Dec 14, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $900.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: tack sharp especially from F4 and up. great fast autofocus on both my d70 and d2x. very competative price... zoomring feels very smooth focusring also very smooth. the whole lens seems built like a tank
Cons:
maybe a little soft wide open@200mm but nothing that can be handled in pp. standard tripod colar to close to the zoomring.

really nice good priced lens. value for money.... one of the best sigma's around i think

Dec 14, 2006
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crosstrainer
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Registered: Jan 7, 2006
Location: Philippines
Posts: 0
Review Date: Nov 27, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $650.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: crisp, clear, contrasty images, supplied hood and tripod mount, quick and silent focus
Cons:
5' focus, warm color cast, EX finish easy to scratch

I've had this lens for over 4 months already, and while it's an amazing piece of glass, it took some time for me to fully appreciate it. Call it lens lust or what-have-you but I actually purchased this without having a real need for it. Having said that, it means that I am not a sports photographer or an events photographer needing this lens all the time.

However, as an expensive portrait lens, it is simply top notch. it's quite sharp, and wide open, the bokeh is buttery smooth. It's so smooth that it can be addicting.

here are two samples:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/chewychua/221027235/in/set-72157594245623799/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/chewychua/299962910/in/set-72157594245623799/

and a sample in-motion shot:

"puppy in flight"
http://www.flickr.com/photos/chewychua/258279566/in/set-72157594245623799/




Nov 27, 2006
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David Plummer
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Registered: Nov 11, 2006
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 0
Review Date: Nov 11, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Very sharp at all apertures through the whole zoom range, even f2.8. Excellent build quality.
Cons:
None.

After 6 months of using this lens on a Canon 5D I am still amazed by this piece of glass. The images it produces are rich in detail at all focal lengths and at all apertures. Contrast is also top rate giving nice punchy images. It handles well and the build quality is excellent. What more could you want?

Nov 11, 2006
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Matthew Medeir
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Registered: Oct 30, 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 0
Review Date: Oct 30, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $700.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: sharp at smaller apertures; excellent color reproduction; well built (heavy metal base; magnesium tripod collar); quiet/fast AF motor
Cons:
poor exterior paint quality; slight off-focusing at higher focal lengths and larger apertures when mounted on the Canon 10D body

I was somewhat diappointed with the off-focusing effect at focal lengths from 135-200mm and using apertures from F3.5-F2.8 (on a Canon 10D body). A review of several internet forums revealed that other users have experienced similar off-focusing effects when using the larger apertures, longer focal lengths. With a little experimenting (to avoid sending the lens to Sigma for inspection), I found the best results come with focusing manually and compensating for the slight off-focusing. It takes some practice, but the practice pays off. After a year of use, I can confidently say that this lens performes very well, producing very detailed and sharp images at the smaller apertures. Colors are reproduced accurately, and the bokeh resulting from this lens can instill unique qualities to portraits; highly recommended for the price, image quality, and build quality.



Oct 30, 2006
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Mr. Clean
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Registered: Apr 20, 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 185
Review Date: Oct 30, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $889.95 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Sharp at wide and long end, smooth focus and zoom rings, well built, includes hood and case. AF is fast, FTM and HSM together is very very nice.
Cons:
A bit on the heavy side which might affect some people.

This Sigma doesn't disappoint in build quality. It's heavy, solid, tank like. Much like all the other EX's I own it's very well built. The hood attaches smoothly and easily. The lens cap goes on a touch harder than a Canon lens cap but it's not really even worth complaining about. The tripod ring is a nice feature to have included with your 70-200 and the carrying case is nice with a longer strap included for over-the-shoulder carrying. The 70-200 + 30D + battery grip is nicely balanced. Anyone who has concerns with the 24-70 in regards to weight will have issues. I think it's fine to handhold, no issues. But keep in mind, it's heavy and there's a lot of glass.

The zoom ring is silky smooth, as is the focus ring. Probably the smoothest of all the EX's I own with the exception of my 10-20. The 70-200 and the 10-20 both have buttery smooth action on the focus and zoom.

AF speed is quick. It feels equally as quick as my 85mm 1.8 when focusing from infinity to 1 meter at a distance of 1 meter.

The unfortunate part is I started communting a bit before 6am yesterday, and left the shop at 5:30 and had a working lunch. No ducks! So I was only able to snap a couple pics in my office and a couple while waiting for my truck to warm up. Being the rainy season in Washington it was dark as heck by the time I left. I'll try to get out during lunch today to find some wildlife. That being said though, my initial thoughts of IQ are very very good. I see very very good results wide open, at 70mm and at 200. I couldn't test a macro shot because I couldn't hand hold at 200 and zoom in to the 39.4" MFD very well. Macro is a bit of a reach, better to call this one "close up" with it's 1:3.5 ratio. Still, it's nice to use a 7x-xxx lens that is fast, sharp at 2.8, and internally focuses. I would say the 70-200 is sharper at 2.8 than my 70-300 APO is at 5.6, which really shouldn't be a suprise. Very happy with the quality of background blur also.

Very happy with the purchase!


Oct 30, 2006
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gazzajagman
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Registered: Apr 26, 2006
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 172
Review Date: Oct 22, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

Pros: Smaller and lighter than the Canon version. Very very sharp.
Cons:
Obvious vignetting wide open. Had focus issues (see below). New EX pain finish chips easy. Sigma lens cap is rubbish. MFD is poor compared to Canon and Nikon versions.

I love this lens and it's perfect for my needs. I use it on my Canon 5D regularly. It's smaller and lighter than the Canon version but just as well built. It's also black, so it's far less obtrusive than it's white cousins. The weight drops a lot if you take the tripod collar off.
Wide open performance: At 70-135mm it is very very sharp, astoundingly so. At 200mm it softens noticble but is still very sharp. Stopped down to f4 and it's very very sharp across the whole focal range.
Lens hood os great, and the knatty lans bag is nice. On this lens the 77mm filter thread is slighly loose and the Sigma supplied lens cap kept falling off in my bag. No problems with the Canon 77mm lens cap. Which is odd because my Sigma 135-400mm doesn't have this problem (and it's the same cap and size).
I sent my copy back to Sigma when I noticed that it was front focussing by a tad. This made my images look soft, Sigma sorted this out with in a week so I have no real complaints at all. I'm glad to have it sorted, but sometimes the Sigma seems to not focus exactly where I point it. I think that the depth of field is really shallow at f2.8 and the size of the focus spot comes into play here too. It's focus is fast and silent, it may be a tad slower than the Canon version but we are talking hair slitting here. My copy of this lens is sharper and my friends Canon IS version...but there's not a lot in it to be frank.
It takes a 1.4x TC well but it does drop IQ a tad. A 2xTC is quite soft and smeary and I would advise against it unless you have no other choice.
It's a shame that Sigma have just put their prices up in the UK again (for no good reason).


Oct 22, 2006
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achromatic
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Registered: Sep 15, 2006
Location: Australia
Posts: 0
Review Date: Sep 28, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $821.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Very solid build, nice balance, excellent quality.
Cons:
Slightly slow(er) focusing

This is a lovely lens. Crisp and sharp. The lens does take a moment to focus, but nothing intolerable by any means. It's hardly fair comparing a $200 90-300 lens to this, but nonetheless, I was exceptionally happy I traded it in.

Sep 28, 2006
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stowman2
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Registered: Nov 13, 2003
Location: United States
Posts: 1
Review Date: Sep 7, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Sharp, Fast focus F2.8
Cons:

Great Lens, Fast to focus and never had a problem. I have used it in snow during Winter X-Games on my Elan and worked great. Used it at Rodeos and not a problem.

I have the Sigma 2x converter and you do lose some sharpness, but nothing to be worried about. I recommend this less to anyone.


Sep 7, 2006
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marty01_uk
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Registered: Aug 15, 2006
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 3
Review Date: Aug 15, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Very sharp fast lens .silent acurate focusing
Cons:
a little heavy allthough its an f2.8

What a lens mine was an ex display model so i got it cheap....
it was to originally back my canon 70-200 f4 l lens but it has taken over as the main one.....It is heavier than my canon but it is also faster.
I've found the sharpness excellent throughout the apature range and stunning between f4 and f 11.....


Aug 15, 2006
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Frozen Orange
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Registered: Apr 29, 2006
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 11
Review Date: Jul 31, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Internal focus mechanism, very sharp stopped down, great manual focus control and fast too. Excellent VFM compared with L glass.
Cons:
Quite heavy and difficult to handhold for long periods of time. Lens cap fitment is poor but so far it's managed to stay in place.

I was convinced I'd brought a faulty lens after getting mine off ebay for 400. However, it was clear with some perseverance that any problems with this lens were operator error! Wide open focussing is critical and my attempts at motorcycle photography at 2.8 yielded some pretty dreadfull results. However, stopped down between F6.3 and F11 with manual focus I got some real gems from this lens even when shooting through a fence.

Even though the 2.8 is no good for me with the sports photograhy I do (at least until I get a lot more practice in) the 2.8 through the range is very useful for portrait and general photograpy. The bokeh produced when shooting pics of the kids in the garden is simply wonderful.

Even though I also own the 100-400 I find this a much easier lens to use when manual focusing. The 100-400 only comes out when I need the reach which I never in a million years thought would be the case!

Overall, I can't recommend this lens enough. Sure, the mode 1 IS of the Canon 70-200 would be useful but at a 3rd of the price this one will definately be staying with me for some time to come. A cracking lens and no guilty feelings about spending too much of the family silver!


Jul 31, 2006
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winnie
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Registered: Jun 17, 2005
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 111
Review Date: Jul 25, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

Pros: Sharp, Value for Money, Solid Build, F/2.8, Tripod collar
Cons:
As stated by many, the lens cap is hopeless. Stiff zoom ring.

I struggled with the 70-200 to start with and believed that I had found a lemon but after some practise the results started to come and I am more than happy.

Based on other reviews I was expecting the sharpness at f2.8 to blow my socks off but I was quickly awakened to the paper thin DOF wide open and how difficult it can be to get sharp shots. Focus is critical and fortunately the HSM performs very well, snapping on quickly to the target. The zoom ring on mine is a little stiff but is starting to ease a little.

Considering the price I paid for a mint copy, cased and boxed, I am more than happy now that it is in my bag.


Jul 25, 2006
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marcusparham
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Registered: Dec 27, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 59
Review Date: Jul 20, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $899.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Sharp, fast, and well built
Cons:
none

Purchased this lens for use on my D200 and fell in love with it. Appears to be sharp throughout the focal range with good bokeh.
This is the latest version with macro capabilities. I would highly recommend this lens


Jul 20, 2006
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shannonrdh
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Registered: Apr 1, 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 0
Review Date: Jul 14, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $899.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: I have the new Macro version. good price for the wide aperture and zoom length
Cons:
heavy but that's b/c of all that glass!

I use this on my Canon 30D which has 1.6 crop factor. I've used it for portraiture work and it looks great. Need to use tripod b/c of the weight but it's a long zoom and has a lot of glass....

Jul 14, 2006
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Lani Kai
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Registered: Oct 3, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 782
Review Date: Jul 14, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

Pros: Sharp, good build, fast, great price
Cons:
Mine was kind of soft near MFD at 200mm

My copy was not exactly sharp at 200mm closer than about 3m. Aside from that it was tack sharp at f/2.8, with the wide end being slightly better. A great bargain compared to the EF 70-200mm f/2.8L

Jul 14, 2006
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eddyboy
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Registered: Jun 25, 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 599
Review Date: Jul 13, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $740.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Very fast focus doesn't HUNT for focus Tack Sharp Great quality
Cons:
no downside

I bought this to use with a brand new D100 in 2003. What a treat! I took it to Botswana and took thousands of pictures. I was blown away by the number of in focus and properly exposed images. I brought 5 lenses and used 2. 99% were the Sigma. If it were lost, broken or stolen, I'd replace it with another immediately. Great buy!

Jul 13, 2006
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dyregod
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Registered: Jun 14, 2006
Location: Switzerland
Posts: 0
Review Date: Jun 14, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Very sharp, fast and quiet
Cons:
Weight

I bought this lens a year ago to get a sharp and fast zoom in that range. The canon was simply too expensiv though I agree that IS would be mighty usefull.

The lens is very sharp with nice colors and AF is quiet and fast. The build quality is excellent. The only negative aspect is that the lens is rather heavy.. but well I'm still young so I guess it's ok for now..


Jun 14, 2006
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Sigma 70-200mm f2.8 EX APO IF HSM

Buy from B&H Photo
Reviews Views Date of last review
153 548060 Jan 21, 2012
Recommended By Average Price
93% of reviewers $709.02
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
9.05
9.36
9.1
05_03_1_


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