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  Reviews by: JohnLL  

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Sigma 80-400mm F4.5-5.6 EX OS APO

Review Date: Apr 10, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

Pros: Sharp
Heavy, slow AF

I've had this lens (new) for a few months now, using it with a Canon 5D. The AF is on the slow side - it's not a sports lens, as someone already remarked. You can hear the AF, but the noise doesn't bother me. In low light or when using a TC, it's better to use MF, or at least touch up the AF manually, which you can do without switching modes. The OS works fine for me. I have OS on two (shorter) Canon lenses, and feel they may be better, but it could just be that the longer lens is harder to stabilize, which would be no surprise. It's heavy, but solid, and I've had no functional issues with it so far. With proper technique you can get very sharp images with this lens. As with all long lenses, DOF is limited - also no surprise.

Tokina 24-200mm AT-X 242 AF

Review Date: Mar 1, 2006 Recommend? | Price paid: Not Indicated

Pros: Same as before
Same as before, plus the fact that I get some vignetting on a full-frame sensor.

This is an update to a review I posted some time ago. I have now used this lens on a full-frame camera (5D). No change in rating or comments, except that it does vignet a bit more than some other lenses on the full frame. The canon 28-200, for example vignets a bit less. I'm going to keep this as the standard lens for my small-sensor camera, currently a 10D, eventually maybe a 30D. I'm using the Canon 28-200 on the 5D and will eventually make it the standard lens on the EOS 3, which it was before I got the 5D. I hope to get a 24-105 L as the standard lens for the 5D.

Tokina 24-200mm AT-X 242 AF

Review Date: Apr 19, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

Pros: Image quality, build, price

AF is quiet and accurate. Fast enough for general use, but not for action (but not appreciably slower than the Canon 28-200 USM). I got this lens because I thought my Canon 28-200 was on the soft side, and I wanted the extra FOV at the wide end. I am getting sharper results from the Tokina. This is a nice lens to use.

Canon EF 28-200mm f/3.5-5.6 USM

Review Date: Nov 7, 2004 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $340.00 | Rating: 6 

Pros: Wide zoom range, reasoable size, weight, speed for general use.
Optical quality, but be fair, it's not an "L" lens.

This is a consumer-quality lens, so don't expect it to measure up to top-quality glass. It was the first lens I got for my 10D, as I wanted the widest possible zoom range at the lowest possible price and weight. Also to minimize number of lens changes, as I was concerned about dust on the sensor. I still am, but I'm learning to live with it. Not as big a problem as I feared.

At first, I was rather disappointed, but soon discovered that most of the fault was mine. As I got the hang of using the AF, and figured out what shutter speed I could actually hold by hand, sharpness improved immensely. I have made 8.5 x 11" prints from about a quarter of the total image area, equivalent to 17 x 22" prints from the total image, that look very good. Needs some USM, but that's par for the course with a digital SLR using RAW format.

Seeing the comments about the maximum focal length of this lens, I decided to measure it for myself, so I took it out on a tennis court, set it up on a tripod, and measured the horizontal field of view at 30 metres. Based on the viewfinder, I got 204mm, but the viewfinder only gives 95% coverage, vertical and horizontal, so the corrected result is 194mm. My estimated margin of error in each measurement is about 1/3%, so we could have a 2/3% total error, plus or minus, giving a final range conservatively between 192 and 196mm. This is just under the claimed 200mm, but you'll never notice it in real photography.