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Sigma 28-200 vs Canon 28-80 3.5-5.6 IV

John Wild , Apr 28, 2008; 06:32 p.m.

I like shooting film, and I got my first Auto Focus SLR, an EOS 100FN with an EF 35-80 F4-5.6 kit lens last week, mainly for photographing the kids on bikes & running about. Other posts here rate that kit lens as a very poor one. I have another 2 lenses:

Canon 28-80 1:3.5-5.6 IV Ultrasonic Sigma 28-200 1:3.8-5.6 UC Both clean and in good shape, fortunately picked up for a fiver the pair.

So in the 35mm to 80mm range that I use most, say at 5.6 to F11, is the Sigma likely to out perform the Canon for sharpness and colours? Interestingly, at 80mm, the Sigma opens to F4.5 until 85mm, whereas the Canon stops down to 5.6 from 60mm or so. This is my outdoor, lots of light camera, to be used with slide film (Kodachrome is my current favorite). No low light requirements.

Any thoughts please?

Responses

John Fox , Apr 28, 2008; 08:03 p.m.

I owned a sigma 28-200 and a canon 28-105 USM II (3.5-4.5). The canon was used all the time. More light, excellent speed in focus and silent, great feel, good sharpness and contrast. I loved it compared to the 18-55 normal digital lens. The sigma was ok. I never felt it was sharp, but is was very usable. From what I have read, sigma made many 28-200 lenses, some better than other. I would try and get a longer lens to balance out your lens selection and get ride of the sigma. Take some shots and see what you want to do with your shooting. have fun.

Geoff Francis , Apr 29, 2008; 01:37 a.m.

I owned a Canon 28-80 f3.5-5.6 lens once (the non USM version) and sorry but I would have to say it was the worst lens I have ever used. Soft wide open, and not much better stopped down with poor colour and contrast at all apertures and focal lenghts. It was also slow and noisey to focus. Canon optimised this lens for cheapness and it shows in every way.

The 28-105 f3.5-4.5 USM that John Fox mentions is in a whole different league.

If you want I high quality lens and you are on a budget then the Canon 50 f1.8 is as good as it gets (you can zoom a bit with your feet), or the 28-105 f3.5-4.5 USM if you want a low cost, high performance zoom.

Victor Kunkel , Apr 29, 2008; 03:01 p.m.

I used a Tamron 28 - 200 Super II on my Elan IIe. Gave the camera to my daughter when I went to a 40D and kept the lens for my 40D in case I wanted more reach than the 17 - 85 IS. I bought a 28 - 80 for her at a swap meet. She is happy with it as she is just learning. Back when I bought the Tammy, I seem to remember it testing just a bit better than the Sigma. Handling it, I just liked it better, but that is me and handling is so very subjective. So, my thought is run your own tests on what you have. If you like it, use it and have fun.

John Wild , Apr 30, 2008; 02:04 a.m.

I've had a look at a picture of the 28-105 mentioned above and it does look better quality than either of my Canon lenses. I don't intend buying a new zoom though, just stick with the best of the 3 I have (probably the Sigma). I have done some tests at F5.6 with the 3 as suggested. Will have to wait and see now. I like the idea of buying just a single prime lens, hopefully to last 15 years+, instead of going digital right now.

As Geoff brought up the 50mm, I wondered if, at smaller apertures, F2.8 and above, the F1.2 was as sharp as the F1.4 or F1.8?

Anyway, thanks for the advice and experiences.

Geoff Francis , Apr 30, 2008; 03:37 a.m.

In terms of the 50s it probably depends as much on the copy you have as compared with which model you have.

I think from memory the photozone tests rated the f1.4 version a bit higher than either the f1.8 or the f1.2 when stopped down, but user reports vary with many reporting both good and bad results for all of them. All of them stoped down a little will sigificantly outperform any of the zooms discussed here, though by about f5.6-f8 they probably even up pretty closely with the 28-105 f3.5-4.5 USM

John Wild , Apr 30, 2008; 05:53 a.m.

So I will look out for a 50mm F1.4 or F2. I might put the other 3 zooms on ebay an look for a 28-105 f3.5-4.5 longer term.

Thanks everyone. You have been a big help.

Will check out photozone too.

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