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Sigma 18-125mm F3.5-5.6 DC

4882618_125dc_1_
Review Date: May 8, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Sharp through out the aperture and focal length, internal focusing.
Cons:
Noisy focusing motor, focusing ring can be firmer.

I have done a side by side comparison with Canon EF 50mmf/1.8 II. I was expecting huge differences between an "original" prime lens and a "third party" zoom lens, but I was wrong. Yes the Canon EF 50mmf/1.8 II is sharper, but just by a tiny weeny bit at 100% crop, which is unlikely to be noticable even at large prints.

Sharpness is very consistent through out the aperture range. Lens is sharpest at f5.6 and f8 at full wide angle and full telephoto respectively. The difference of sharpness between widest aperture and optimal aperture is minimal. The lens says f3.5-5.6 and it is really good at f3.5-5.6, Unlike the Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 and Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II that says f/3.5-5.6 and f/1.8 but you wouldn't really want to use them at those appertures.

Focusing motor is noisy. But it is not something that I mind, may be I am weird but sometimes I prefer hearing it to know that the AF is working.

I'd prefer the the focusing ring to be firmer but that was just nitpick as that is the case with all AF lenses except those from the top of the line.

Definitely a nice upgrade from Canon kit lens Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6, especially in term of corner sharpness, and the range is very useful and great for travelling if you can only bring one lens.


 
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II

ef50mmf_18_1_
Review Date: May 8, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 6 

 
Pros: Cheap and light.
Cons:
Soft below f4.

Yes it's sharp and yes it's fast, but the problem is both of them don't come together.

It is a fast lens. I was thinking that I could use it for low available light photography at its large f1.8 aperture, but I am wrong, images were very soft (at least for my copy). May be at f2.8 it is good for portrait for being not too sharp. It is a sharp lens when used f5.6 and above though, but it is not "fast" any more.

Build wise, it isn't most solid of all lenses for being an all plastic body with pathetic focusing ring, but I have absolutely no problem with it. In fact I like it being light and petite.

I have no complaint on its focusing, definitely not slow and too noisy.