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Sigma 120-300mm f/2.8 DG OS HSM "S"

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Reviews Views Date of last review
6 9898 Jun 23, 2015
Recommended By Average Price
100% of reviewers $2,700.00
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
9.83
9.50
9.5
Screen_Shot_2013-11-15_at_11_12_41_AM

Specifications:
Name: Sigma 120-300mm /2.8 DG OS HSM "S"
Image Circle: 35mm
Type: Telephoto Zoom
Focal Length: 120 - 300mm
APS Equivalent: 1.5x: 180 - 450mm; 1.6x: 192 - 480mm
Max Aperture: /2.8
Min Aperture: /22
Diaphragm Blades: 9 (rounded)
Lens Construction: 23 elements in 18 groups
Diagonal Angle of View
(Based on image circle): 20.4 to 8.2 degrees
Focus Details: Internal; Hypersonic Motor (HSM) with full-time manual override
Front Element Rotation: No
Zoom System: Rotary; Internal
Closest Focus: 150cm / 59.1 in. to 250cm / 98.4 in.
Magnification Ratio: 0.12x / 1:8.1
Filter Size: 105mm
Dimensions
(Length x Diameter): 291mm x 124.4mm / 11.5 in. x 4.8 in.
Weight: 6lb, 12.4 oz / 3,062 g (lens alone), hood: 276 grams, tripod foot: 360 grams.
Notes: Image Stablized (up to 4 stops); Available AF Mounts: Canon, Nikon, Sigma; Accessores: metal lens hood, lens case, tripod socket (TS-51).
Typical Online Price: US$3,600



 


      
scott_scheetz
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Registered: Oct 31, 2012
Location: United States
Posts: 59
Review Date: Jun 23, 2015 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,600.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Very Sharp, great build quality, Fast AF, Great Optical Stabilization, Great colors and contrast, No CA (that I've seen)
Cons:
Heavy and big (but what do you expect for a lens in this class)

This review is for the pre-global vision version of this lens (The EX DG OS APO HSM version). There doesn't appear to be a review page for it, so I'm putting it here. I've talked to Sigma, and they confirmed that the Optical design is the same as the newer version. The newer version just has a different exterior design and electronics.

Image Quality:
The image quality of this lens is excellent. I've also used the Canon 70-200mm f/2.8L IS, and it matches very well in regards to sharpness, contrast, colors, and is better at handling flare.

AF is fast an accurate on my 5D, but back-focuses on my 1D, so I just stick with using it on the 5D. Sigma told me they could calibrate it, but I just don't have the time to send off my camera during the middle of the summer wedding season.

The OS unit on this lens does a great job considering the focal length, and size of the optics. Generally about 3 stops of stabilization. The OS unit does make an audible sound when engaging, something that is taken care of with the newer "Sport" version.

Build quality is excellent, and it is partially sealed against elements. I've used it in light rain before without any issues. It is a heavy lens though, as expected for a 120-300mm f/2.8. For those who have used a 300mm f/2.8 before, it is heavier than that. The older version is still a pound lighter than the newer "sport" version, so that is a benefit of the older version (part of why I got it, as well as price).

Teleconverters
With the 1.4x = 168-420mm f/4.
With the 2x = 240-600mm f/5.6.
With the 1.4x+2x = 256-840mm f/8.
I"ve used this with both the Sigma 1.4x Teleconverter EX DG APO and the Sigma 2x Teleconverter EX DG APO. Image quality takes a very very small hit with the 1.4x, and a little bit bigger of a hit with the 2x, but both still yield very usable and good images. With both teleconverters in place, there is a big hit in image quality, and most of the time you are better off not doing it. I haven't seen any slowdown of AF with either teleconverter separately, and obviously there is a big hit in AF with both in place as the lens is now at f/8.

Price/Conclusion
With the older version being sub 2K, it is a very good option when comparing to either the newer version, or a 300mm f/2.8 prime or a 400mm f/4 prime. Overall I've been extremely pleased with this lens, and it makes an excellent lens for portraits, as well as wildlife when paired with the 1.4x & 2x teleconverters.


Sample images (Mix of with and without the teleconverters):
https://www.flickr.com/photos/scottscheetz/17094910897/ (5D, 300mm, f/2.8)
https://www.flickr.com/photos/scottscheetz/16648391773/ (1DSII, 378mm, f/4)
https://www.flickr.com/photos/scottscheetz/17653290441/ (5D, 420mm, f/4)
https://www.flickr.com/photos/scottscheetz/17660559554/ (5D, 840mm, f/8)
https://www.flickr.com/photos/scottscheetz/17030682004/ (5D, 354mm, f/4)
https://www.flickr.com/photos/scottscheetz/17032849203/ (5D, 420mm, f/4)
https://www.flickr.com/photos/scottscheetz/17276391636/ (5D, 235mm, f/3.2)


Jun 23, 2015
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JMDobson
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Registered: Aug 3, 2013
Location: United States
Posts: 118
Review Date: Jun 14, 2015 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $2,450.00 | Rating: 7 

Pros: A zoom lens in this FL is awesome. Build quality is top-notch. Rings have just the right amount of dampening. Pretty sharp @2.8 great by 3.5. Not too heavy to hand-hold.
Cons:
Focus shift, so you can't zoom to 300 and focus and then zoom out. Tripod collar is horrendous. Vingette at 2.8 is pretty bad. Need to buy the sigma dock to unlock fastest autofocus, and even then, it feels slightly slower than my nikon 70-200 VRII. It's fast enough for sprinting subjects most of the time, but I wish it was faster. Metal lens hood, wish it was carbon fiber for weight loss.



Jun 14, 2015
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PennsyBill
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Buy and Sell: On

Registered: Jan 5, 2010
Location: United States
Posts: 757
Review Date: Jun 2, 2014 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Great Image Quality - Fast Focusing - Customize Performance With Optional USB - Very Small Drop In IQ w/Sigma 1.4TC - It's a Nikon 70-200 VRII on Steroids - I Think Skin Tones Are More Natural Than any Nikon Lens I've used.
Cons:
It's heavier than the 200-400 f4 that I used prior to the Sigma - and harder to balance on a monopod. +1 on the comments about lens hood - great in use but stopped carrying it reversed on the lens as I didn't want to chance scratching the body of the lens

The finish should do a great job protecting the camera and the lens glass is a pretty as any other lens I've seen.

I thought the camera & lens combination would be similar in handling to the camera and the Nikon 200-400 f4 VR but it really wasn't close. I think I'll try another mounting foot for it

Almost forgot - on a Nikon body your focusing is reversed


Jun 2, 2014
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kc3m
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Registered: Aug 7, 2013
Location: United States
Posts: 0
Review Date: Jan 15, 2014 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $3,600.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Value and performance. Functionality w/ 5Dm3 and 1.4X. Very sharp. Well constructed. Ability to adjust firmware parameters w/SIGMA dock & software
Cons:
Heavy. Sealed for dust, not for water.

Rented this lens first to assure this SIGMA lens would be fully compatible with my Canon 5dm3 & 5dm2 and the Canon 1.4X extender vII. I was impressed and delighted. Purchased it for wildlife photography as I needed a bit more range than my canon 70-200 2.8.



Jan 15, 2014
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micloi
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Registered: May 1, 2010
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 66
Review Date: Dec 2, 2013 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Sharp Fast AF when tweaked with the USB dock Custom modes Great with the 1.4x and 2x Great range
Cons:
Heavier than the Canon and Nikon versions (which are not a zoom lens though)

I have tried practically every Nikon, Canon and Sigma telephotos.

This is one of my favourite lenses and, with the variable limiter and AF speed customization, fixes the main complain I had from the precious version.

Very usable at 600mm f5.6, very sharp at 600mm f6.3 and tack sharp at f7.1 with the D800e


Dec 2, 2013
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teglis
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Registered: Aug 31, 2004
Location: Canada
Posts: 1094
Review Date: Nov 21, 2013 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $3,150.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: 300mm/2.8, sharp, great bokeh, price relative to primes
Cons:
Attaching hood in reverse position for storage, size and weight (no surprise there)

This lens is incredibly sharp, even wide open (5D2). Sigma lenses have a reputation for focus problems, but my copy is spot on. Stabilization works well.

Obviously this is a big heavy lens, but I have carried it in a backpack and even hand carried while walking. It is hand-holdable in daylight. I haven't tried it at lower shutter speeds. Its size makes it quite conspicuous.

The hood has a thumbscrew to make sure it is securely attached, and that works well when shooting. But when reversing the hood for storage, it doesn't seem to twist into position as well, and I've had it fall off even with the screw tightened.


Nov 21, 2013
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Sigma 120-300mm f/2.8 DG OS HSM "S"

Buy from B&H Photo
Reviews Views Date of last review
6 9898 Jun 23, 2015
Recommended By Average Price
100% of reviewers $2,700.00
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
9.83
9.50
9.5
Screen_Shot_2013-11-15_at_11_12_41_AM

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