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  Reviews by: Cedric_g  

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Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM

24-105lisusm
Review Date: Jul 13, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: sharpness, AF, built quality, IS, range
Cons:
vignetting and distorsion at 24mm

Bought this lens for "all usages". I hesitated a long time with 24-70/2.8 L USM but the range and the optical stabilization convinced me Wink

The sharpness is awesome (on EOS 5D), AF speed and precision are fabulous, IS is magic (I took sharp photos at 1/8s !!!), construction is "L"ike a rock !

On the other hand, vignetting at full aperture (especially at 24mm) is "kolossal" but can be corrected in the most part on computer... Distorsion at 24mm is also a little problem, but I think that this lense isn't really the best solution for architecture photos :D

In reportage it is fabulous !


 
Sigma 500mm f4.5 EX Apo HSM

500f4_5EX_lg_1_
Review Date: Oct 21, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Build quality, price (for non DG version !), sharpness, perfect ergonomics
Cons:
A little short lens hood (less of contrast if the sun shoots the frontal lens...)

I use it on Canon EOS 20D.

This lens is a terrible challenger for Canon supertele lenses, for several reasons :
- price (the 500/4 IS costs triple !!!)
- build quality
- circ. polarizer included
- the old Canon 500/4.5 L USM will not be reparable any more in May 2006 and is as expensive as the Sigma one (but for a used model)

Ergonomics :
- perfect in hands ! The tripod collar is simply awesome, offering a excellent catch in hand
- shorter and lighter than Canon 500mm lenses
- close focus
- very good with Manfrotto 393 head on monopod (I like this combination for approaching animals !)

AF :
- the faster of all my lenses ! I have owned the Canon 500/4.5 L USM for one month and I think the Sigma is a little faster.

Optical quality :
- perfectible but very reasonable sharpness at f/4.5 to my mind, very good at f/5.0 and excellent up to f/5.6 ; at full aperture the Canon 500/4.5 is better
- no chromatic aberrations
- very good contrast (but a little under the Canon 500/4.5 at full aperture)
- a surprising very good sharpness with Sigma x1.4 EX Apo (but no AF...)


Conclusion : I bought this lens for waiting a future Canon 500/4 IS (so expensive !!!) and I'm REALLY happy of my choice !


 
Canon EF 300mm f/4L IS USM

ef300mmf_4_1_
Review Date: Nov 24, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $1,207.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Good sharpness, maniability, IS, quality : the ideal lens for wildlife photography in approach !
Cons:
May be a little sharper, like the non IS version ?...

I have longer hesitated between this lens and the 100-400 L IS USM zoom, to replace my Sigma 135-400mm... But I wanted too a more luminous lens, so my choice was the 300/4 L IS USM !

I don't regret now, because I worked only at 400mm with my old 135-400, and primes are of better quality globaly than zooms.

The sharpness is really good, increasing when stop down ; may be a little sharper (like the non IS version) ?... ;-)

In maniability ? The best !!! Not too heavy, not too long, IS, luminous aperture, 1.50 meter working distance... All points are positive !

Some pics for testing my lens (crops, fullsize pics) : http://www.pbase.com/cedric_g/canon_300mm_f40_l_is_usm


 
Sigma 24-135mm f/2.8-4.5 Aspherical IF

sigma24_135
Review Date: Jun 8, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $347.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: (Very) fast AF for a non HSM lense, sharp between f5.6 and f11.0 (all range), very good construction, good range for DSLR
Cons:
Smooth at full aperture, strong barrel distorsion at wide angle

I initially bought this lens because I wished a lens for family and trips (and also for events like dog competitions !).

Quality is good while stepping down a stop, and becomes very good starting from f5.6 on all the focal range, it until f11 even f16. Be careful, this lens is not sharp at full aperture at 24mm.

The AF is extremely swift for a non HSM lense, but obviously not such a quiet. It's a good thing for dynamic subjects !

The distorsion is on the middle of the range, even if it is strong at wide angle (1.6% barrel) ; but I don't use this lense for architecture ;-)

In practice, this lens is very pleasant to handle : I like it !

Some pics (crop, fullsize pictures...) here : http://www.pbase.com/cedric_g/sigma_24135_f2845


 
Sigma 135-400 MM f/4.5-5.6 ASP AF APO

18499135-400
Review Date: Mar 31, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $427.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Good construction, very sharp for a 400mm telezoom, low price !!!
Cons:
slow and noisy AF

I use this lens for wildlife and birds photography. Initially, my budget didn't enable me to buy a more powerful lens, but today I know that I made an excellent choice !

The lens is very sharp between 135mm and 250mm (especially between f5.6 and f8.0), and have a surprising sharpness at 400mm, even at full aperture (f5.6) ! The sharpness (and micro-contrast) increase a little at f8.0 but it isn't really significant (I use Canon Digital Rebel).

At this price it's the best quality/price on the market. I think also that the only telezoom lense which is better (on Canon mount) is the Canon 100-400 IS but it costs 3 time its price !... All other generic lenses aren't as good as this telezoom.
[Edit] The new Sigma lens 80-400 OS is sharper than the 135-400 too...

My test gallery with crops and fullsizes pics : http://www.pbase.com/cedric_g/sigma_135400_f4556 (in french, sorry)


[Edit] I have changed my 135-400mm for a Canon 300/4 L IS USM, because I worked only at 400mm with the 135-400... I'm waiting for buying now a Sigma 500/4.5 EX HSM !


 
Sigma 50mm f2.8 EX Macro 1:1 Lens

05_02_1_
Review Date: Mar 31, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $250.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Sharpness (good at f2.8, very good to excellent between f5.6 and f16, and even good at f22, on DSLR...), light weight, very good construction, 1:1 without accessories
Cons:
A little warm, and puffing and noisy AF (but in macro it isn't very important... To my mind !)

A little short for insects (minimal focus distance between subject and front lense = 4 cm, at 1:1) but extremly sharp !

I use it for macro and portraits too.

My test gallery (with crops, fullsizes...) : http://www.pbase.com/cedric_g/test_sigma_5028_ex_macro (comments in french, sorry)