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09-06-2010, 09:17 AM   #1
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sigma 100-300mm f4 or pentax 300mm f4?

I cant seem to decide although I have a few weeks before purchase...Anyone have any experience on both of these lenses?

09-06-2010, 09:31 AM   #2
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They are both good.

Do you want the flexibility of a zoom, or the IQ of a single focal length?
09-06-2010, 10:28 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by powdablu21 Quote
I cant seem to decide although I have a few weeks before purchase...Anyone have any experience on both of these lenses?
I had to make the same decision last Summer. When I ran a program against all my shots using the da55-300mm it turned out I used it almost exclusively at 300mm. So much for the flexability of the zoom I had anticipated. Thus, I bought the prime after renting one for a couple weeks to be sure I liked it.

So I recommend you start by analyzing your historical shooting habits to see if the zoom buys you anything. Good luck and have fun shopping.
09-06-2010, 11:38 AM   #4
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why make trillions, when you can make billions?

09-06-2010, 11:39 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by SpecialK Quote
They are both good.

Do you want the flexibility of a zoom, or the IQ of a single focal length?
The decision is even easier - do you need the flexibility of a zoom?

I have the Sigma, and doubt you'd be able to pick the difference in image quality between the two except for large side-by-side prints of images shot wide-open.

The Sigma is quite hand holdable, only slightly heavier than the 70-210/2.8, is sharp wide-open and even sharper stopped-down, the AF is very fast (I shoot on a K10D) and the build quality (it's an EX lens) is very good.

What I find remarkable is the extremely low CA, to the point where it is only slightly visible at 1:1 in some very high contrast scenes, so it's perfect for shooting watersports.

The only 'downside' is the price, I'd think the Pentax prime would be a little cheaper.

-Steve
09-07-2010, 12:16 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Steven7 Quote
The decision is even easier - do you need the flexibility of a zoom?

I have the Sigma, and doubt you'd be able to pick the difference in image quality between the two except for large side-by-side prints of images shot wide-open.

The Sigma is quite hand holdable, only slightly heavier than the 70-210/2.8, is sharp wide-open and even sharper stopped-down, the AF is very fast (I shoot on a K10D) and the build quality (it's an EX lens) is very good.

What I find remarkable is the extremely low CA, to the point where it is only slightly visible at 1:1 in some very high contrast scenes, so it's perfect for shooting watersports.

The only 'downside' is the price, I'd think the Pentax prime would be a little cheaper.

-Steve
it's an APO lens.
09-07-2010, 05:02 AM   #7
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I'm comparing the Sigma 100-300mm f/4 APO EX DG to a Pentax FA300mm f/2.8 prime, at f/8 on a K10D it is difficult to tell them apart. Optically the prime is more versatile because of it's speed however the Sigma has the added utility of being a zoom lens, which for every day hiking photography is extremely useful.

they are both really good lenses. Just pick one they are both superb.

here is an example of the Sigma 100-300mm f/4 ISO800 @ f/11 - 1/250th @300mm
09-07-2010, 05:22 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by powdablu21 Quote
I cant seem to decide although I have a few weeks before purchase...Anyone have any experience on both of these lenses?
I think it's between wanting a zoom or something lighter and smaller. IQ is the same.

09-07-2010, 05:41 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by powdablu21 Quote
I cant seem to decide although I have a few weeks before purchase...Anyone have any experience on both of these lenses?
I tried both briefly and chose the DA*300, mostly because it seemed lighter and smaller and had the weather proofing. Sigma was possibly sharper at middle apertures but the DA* has more consistent performance across all apertures. Also silent focus which was important to me (or has the sigma got ultrasound motor for Pentax now?)
09-07-2010, 04:39 PM   #10
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I don't think the weather sealing argument is going to hold water in the case of the sigma 100-300mm f/4 APO EX DG. The lens is an internally focusing and internally zooming lens, the whole lens remains the same size regardless of what zoom/focus setting you have it on unlike the DA*60-250mm f/4 SDM. So whether water is going to cause any interference in it's mechanisms seems to be quite remote, I have used it in rain without issue. The focusing is very fast on the sigma lens it's almost faster than my FA*85mm f/1.4. - though it does have and inclination to hunt in lower contrast scenes, which can be frustrating.

another image with he Sigma 100-300mm f/4:
09-08-2010, 05:14 AM   #11
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thanks to all of you for the great info and pics. Your help is appreciated as always. I am leaning more towards the sigma now. Im sure Ill flip flop back and forth over the next few weeks, but it sounds like I cant go wrong in either lens.
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