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  Reviews by: gavin  

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Nikon D3

Review Date: Jun 26, 2008 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $6,000.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Low ISO performance. Speed. Build. DX format. New 24-70 and 14-24 lenses.
I wish it have the D2x 2Xcrop.

It is simply the best DSLR I've ever used.
I do this for a living and after useing a D3 (I have 2) I am going to sell my 9 D2's and replace them with D3's, it is the camera Nikon had to make.
Spooky fast focusing and FPS 9 and 11 is differant modes.
Great colour straigh out of the camera and sensible custom image quality options.
Also love the differant in camera crop options.
My photogs will love this new tool in the coming ski season.

Sigma 10-20mm F4-5.6 EX DC HSM

Review Date: Jul 31, 2006 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Much better than the Nikkor 12-24 (which I returned)
People always borrow it

I am useing this baby more and more for weddings/portraits and spoorts.
In fact a few other pros in town have got one after my gushing and all are stocked, enough said, if working pro like it it is a keeper.

Nikon 80-400mm f/4.5-5.6D ED VR AF

Review Date: Jul 10, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 8 

Pros: Sharp, light, 80mm low end, cost. And surprisingly AF speed! (in good light)
Bad AF in low light

I have now used this glass at 2 events and taken 5 or 6 thousand images, and I was expecting it to be average for soccer (the first event) but it was not only usable but perfect for the job. When the light deteriated late in the day the AF had problems, so I went back to my trusty 120-300 f2.8 Sigma (best glass in my kit).

The next event was canoeing and it worked well for this slow sport.
I think this is a 'keeper'
I don't use VR so I can't comment on this to me usless feature.

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

Review Date: Jun 11, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Great range, sharp, better than the 24-120 VR I also own, Fast AF

Put it this way, I employ 4 photogs and they fight over this glass!
I also have 24-120 VR Nikkors's which is nowhere near as consistant as the Sigma.
The other great lense I own in this range is the Nikkor 28-200 ED, but the 24mm bittom end makes the Sigma just a great all rounder.

Nikon 28-200mm f/3.5-5.6G ED-IF AF

Review Date: Jun 11, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $400.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Small, light, sharp as a tack and cheap, the best 'all round' lense we use for ski pics.
It's slow but for my work light is not a problem.

I own many 'all rounders' for my on snow business.
Nikon's 24-120 VR (average) Sigma's 24-135 (stallar glass) and Nikon's 28-200
This will be my glass of choice for next season, unless Sigma brings something new and more flexible to the market.

Nikon 24-120mm f/3.5-5.6G ED-IF AF-S VR

Review Date: Dec 7, 2003 Recommend? no | Price paid: $850.00 | Rating: 4 

Pros: I really wish I could find some

We use several differant lenses for our work and put it this way, me guys don't want to use the body (D100's) with this glass on it.
It is just so inconsistant, it makes it almost unusable. I am playing with differant camera sharpness/hue/constast ect to get it to do a decent job.
I also got the new Sigma 24-135 and WOW! what great piece of glass.
I will be exchanging the Nikor for another Sigma.

Nikon D1H

Review Date: Jun 15, 2003 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Bullit proof, 5fps, great at 1600asa, metering, high flash sync, flexible custom settings, 1.5 crop.
heavy, file size, battery life, not as good as the 1D.

This is my work horse, it's not perfect but it's as close as Nikon make at the moment for sports/PJ's and wildlifers. I sell a ton of pictures out of this camera and it's stellar. My customers are blown away with the colour straight out of the camera (much scewin around with settings to get it right) and it will print to 11X14 as good as anything. I do wish it had a few more megapixels and more fps, canons 1D is a better camera (at the moment) but although I'm very tempted to switch I'll hang on another year to see if a D2h rears it's head. I love the 1.5 crop it makes my day at the rugby or soccer or ski hill a lot easier. I shoot a lot in doors at 1600 asa and it is truely amazing in these tough conditions. The battery life, however, is an embarisment! make sure you buy 3 or 4.

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

Review Date: Jun 15, 2003 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 6 

Pros: Price, good wide open and good (not great) AF speed
Not as good as the 120-300 f2.8 in low light

I used it for a long time and was happy with this lense, compared to the old Nikor 80-200 2.8. I then got a 120-300 Sigma and WOW what a differance! If only my 70-200 focused as fast worked as well in bad light. I am sure the next Sigma mid zoom will be awesome. All in all a good but not great lense. Buy a nikon, or better still get a 120-300 f2.8 and take two steps back if you have too.

Sigma 15-30mm f3.5-4.5 EX Aspherical DG DF

Review Date: Jun 15, 2003 Recommend? no | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 4 

Pros: good usefull wide zoom
Soft (very) wide open

I may have got a bad one. The reviews are stellar for this lense but mine is crap! I'll wait for the nikor 12-24mm and replace it. It is acceptible at f5.6 to 16 but I don't shoot in there much. At 3.5 it's nearly unussable. Put it this way I'm very reluctant to pull it out of the bag unless there is a lot of light. I use the 28-70 f2.8 all the time (great lense) and try to deal with the lack of width.

Sigma 28-70mm f2.8 EX Aspherical DF

Review Date: Jun 15, 2003 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Speed, both AF and Aperture, Sharpness.
flimsy lens hood (plastic)

Yet another Sigma I'm stoked with, it, like the 120-300 f2.8 is tack sharp and does what it's supposed to, take great pictures (at way less than Nikor glass).

Sigma 120-300mm f2.8 EX DG HSM

Review Date: Jun 15, 2003 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $3,400.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Reversed Zoom ring, focus speed, f2.8, price, sharpness.
heavy, problimatic lense mount (nikon).

This truelly is the best lense in my bag. I don't even use the 70 - 200 if I can avoid it. It's pin sharp and AF is as good as I've used. In low light it's stella. I like how the Zoom ring has been moved out so I don't rest my hand on the monopod locking nut, and the 'pull down,push up' zoom action is far more logical than the nikon and canon norm. I can not compare it to anything else, because no one makes one. You do have to make sure the mount is seated well or all sorts of 'err' messages will light up your life.