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New Sigma 50-500 or Canon 100-400 lens

Hadi Khademi , Feb 22, 2010; 04:12 p.m.

In PMI Sigma has announced an Optical Stabilizer version of Sigma 50-500.
http://www.dpreview.com/news/1002/10022010sigma50mm500mm.asp
Before, I was contemplating to buy a Canon EF 100-400mm f4.5-5.6L IS USM but now I am debating between these two lenses. I am assuming that the new OS Sigma 50-500 is essentially the same as Bigma with addition of OS. Any advice is greatly appreciated. FYI I will be using the lens with my 7D for wild life/sports action scenes.
Thanks a bunch

Responses


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Gabriel L , Feb 22, 2010; 04:50 p.m.

The Sigma hasn't even been released & reviewed. Make no assumptions. Either buy the "known quantity" 100-400 now, or assuming you are not pressed for time, just wait until the new Sigma comes out and you can make an informed decision.

Craig Meddaugh , Feb 22, 2010; 05:21 p.m.

Unless the new lens is substantially better than the Bigma you will be better off with the 100-400. I've had both and the 100-400 is by far a better lens. That being said, nobody knows anything about the new lens right now.

Richard "Dick" Tope , Feb 22, 2010; 05:51 p.m.

" you will be better off with the 100-400"

Not if you need, or want, 500mm.

Brett W. , Feb 22, 2010; 07:32 p.m.

"Richard "Dick" Tope Feb 22, 2010; 05:51 p.m.

" you will be better off with the 100-400"
Not if you need, or want, 500mm."
if you crop the 400mm pic on the Canon it looks better than the 500mm on the Sigma (or so I've heard)

Richard "Dick" Tope , Feb 22, 2010; 08:46 p.m.

" (or so I've heard)"

And you probably 'heard' it from someone who's never done it but was just blindly proffering the view that a Canon lens HAS to be better than any other manufacturer under ANY conditions without any evidence to support that position. That same source would likely tell you that adding a 2x TC to the 70-200 is a better option than getting the 100-400 and this has been proven to be incorrect.

I seriously doubt that throwing away 20% of the pixels (the ratio of 400mm to 500mm) will result in a better image. It defies logic and physics. For web display or 4"x6" prints you might get away with it but for larger prints likely not.

The 50-500 is an EX series lens and is much better than Sigma (or Canon) consumer grade lenses and they produce fine images. I own 3 different Sigma EX lenses so this is not speculation on my part but rather a reflection of my real world experience. I also own Canon consumer and 'L' lenses so I have a basis for factual comparison.

Daniel Charette , Feb 22, 2010; 09:36 p.m.

The version of the BIGMA I have has a maximum aperture of 6.3 at 400 and above, most likely the new one will do too, while the 100-400 will have 5.6. I could be wrong, but the BIGMA will not autofocus above 400mm and maybe before, on any Canon body unless it's a 1 series, the Canon 100-400 will. If you're into wildlife and sports, you need AF.

Richard "Dick" Tope , Feb 22, 2010; 10:14 p.m.

"but the BIGMA will not autofocus above 400mm and maybe before, on any Canon body unless it's a 1 series"

That is not correct. I have the Sigma 170-500 which is also f6.3 at the long end. The AF function is fine through the entire zoom range on every body I've used it on which includes the 10D, EOS-3 and 1D MkII. While the lens is, in fact, f6.3 what is reported to the body is f5.6 so AF will work.

"If you're into wildlife and sports, you need AF."

And if you're into wildlife you also need focal length, as in 500mm vs 400mm.

Jake Cole , Feb 22, 2010; 10:46 p.m.

The OP is using a cropped-sensor so the 100-400mm does give enough reach for wildlife, of course more is better (especially when you have both with zoom).
Still the 100-400 is only a 4x zoom, and the 50-500 is 10x, that there is plenty of reason to believe on the current lenses cropping the 400 to 500mm view might produce a better image. We don't have to defy physics they are completely different lenses.
Now on the new lens... all bets are off until they deliver it; the recent Sigma lenses with their new 'glass' seem to be performing great. As was said earlier... WAIT and make an informed choice.

Jamie Robertson , Feb 22, 2010; 11:28 p.m.

I seriously doubt that throwing away 20% of the pixels (the ratio of 400mm to 500mm) will result in a better image. It defies logic and physics.

That would be true if we were talking about identical lenses but we're not. Take the EOS 5D2 and the Canon 200mm f2.8 for example. Would you like a full frame image taken using a cheap Sigma 75-300mm lens at 300mm or would you prefer the same shot taken using the 200mm f2.8 that had been cropped by 20% resulting in a 17MP image?

I'll answer that question for you, the cropped 200mm shot would blow away the quality of the 75-300mm photo every single time at any aperture.

Of course I haven't used a 50-500mm OS, but your 20% cropping theory is nonsense especially when comparing very different lenses.


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