Discussion in 'Lens Matters' started by Loony, Nov 6, 2017.
Any more wildlife lens suggestions?
Not really. The most economic route to the longer focal lengths is to go Sigma - though as I said before there are old and new lenses and 2 variants of the new one so check what you are looking at. Beware that a super telephoto is a handful. Also beware that very small birds stay very small even with a long lens. The eye-popping photos you get on, say Bird guides photo-of-the-week https://www.birdguides.com/articles...tm_medium=email&utm_campaign=newsletter011117, which we can all inspire to, come from people with the fieldcraft to get close, not just from having a long lens.
..or know how to set up their camera to be able to be operated remotely (in some cases very remotely) very close to their subject
About time some folk recognise the truth of that. It seems to me that folk are always looking for the 'magic bullet'. There's no substitute for knowing what you want. learning enough about the crittur to get what you want - and then a HUGE amount of patience to actually succeed.
I often hear it said that "I couldn't get a great picture because that's where the creature was". Well that may be true for that particular occasion but if you can't get what you want at the time then there's no choice - go back and go back again and again and yet again until you do succeed. I took issue with a camera club judge a while back who said that I was "very lucky" to have got that image. It happened that I was doing the vote of thanks. I thanked him for the good mark that he had given to me and added that I was not lucky - it had taken me more than two years to get that species in the position and in the light that I wanted. A bit like that golfer who said "yes I'm lucky and the more I practice the luckier I get". My words went down very well with the membership and with the judge if the things he said to me in private afterwards were anything to go by.
Are prime lenses preferable to zoom? Or is an f2.8 zoom just as good as an f2.8 prime?
The best zooms are probably only marginally poorer than the best primes, but neither come in at low prices, the advantage of a zoom is clear in actual shooting terms. Most f2.8 zooms are good performers, they are not built or sold as budget items, nor indeed are f2.8 telephoto primes. Ultimately it is down to your budget and what you can find within it, I tend to buy most items in the used market, which provides the most for your money.
Also a 200mm at f2.8 will be neither small nor light. The classic Sonnar 180/f2.8 which is the grand-dad of these designs is huge even in the original 1936 version for the Contax rangefinder. The later SLR versions are even bigger. That's the basis on which I went for the Canon 70-200 f2.8 (plus I got mine at a real bargain price because it wasn't "pretty").
Depends what you do with it. If it is only used at the longest length then a prime is likely a better option. If you want the variable focal length then it is no contest for the zoom.
I have a Nikon 180mm f2.8 AF-D, which is not unduly heavy, but also would not be a great focal length for most wildlife work. Just look at the price of any 300mm f2.8 though! One fastish and decently performing lens is the Sigma 100-300mm f4 EX, effectively a 70-200 f2.8 with a 1.4x converter added, without the disadvantage of a converter.
How does the Sigma 100-300 compare to a 70-300? Better because the Sigma stays at f4?
How does 260 pounds for a sigma 100-300 f4 sound?, its seems to be in exellent condition.
I've never heard of this lens but a quick look on google suggests there are some different versions and several reviews. Couple of ads for ~ £320 from dealers (i.e. with warranty). Beware that older Sigma's in Canon mount may not work on modern Canon bodies - but I don't know if this is an affected lens.
Afaik these are rather more modern than the affected lenses. The basic variations are there is a DG (the later) version and a slightly older variant that was not sold as DG. They are all in the EX range, Sigma's higher quality products. They are certainly well-built with good optics, the quality does not dip significantly at the long end, unlike most tele-zooms. I used to have one of these, in Sony mount, I no longer own it, as I no longer have a Sony camera, but would certainly have one of these lenses again.
I got the impression the lens predated 2000 and was updated in 2005. No idea about the DG/EX labels. The only review I glanced at said that sharpness went off beyond 200 but it was only one review.
The lens in question is the HSM APO, which seems to be the latest model.
ePhotozine gave it a decent review back in 2010 which means it's unlikely to exhibit any issues with current or past Canon bodies. Most of the compatibility issues seem to date back to around 2000 give or take and from my experience relate to issues with aperture control. I have a few Sigma lenses from this period and they all work fine on all my digital cameras as long as the aperture is wide open, shut it down though and the camera locks up.
You should be fine with this lens though.
The last model was the DG version, itself having two cosmetic variants. The very last ones had linear patterns on the rubber grips rather than the previous waffle design.
My understanding was that Sigma's 'DG' or 'DC' designation referred to whether they were designed for use on crop sensor cameras or not, with 'DG' being full frame (the equivalent to Nikon FX lenses) and 'DC' being cropped (equivalent to Nikon DX lenses) - I'm not sure of what the corresponding Canon definitions are I'm afraid.
DG (EF in Canon speak) or DC (EF-S in Canon speak) won't matter with a 1300d as it is compatible with both.
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