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11-11-2010, 04:40 AM   #1
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Sigma 70-200mm vs Pentax DA* 60-250mm

I'm after something with more reach than the 50-135 and I tend to shoot low lights, ie bands and concerts.

How would the Pentax 60-250 go under low light compared to the Sigma?

11-11-2010, 05:01 AM   #2
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I am not sure this discussion is as relevant as is may have been three or four years ago

I use the sigma APO 70-200F2.8 EX non Dg non macro. I have owned this lens since I got my *istD in late 2003. In it's infancy digital needed e sry edge and the early sigma is a very solid performer wide open. Add to that the one stop brighter viewfinder and more light for AF and you had a winner. BUT with cameras starting with the K20 and the sensor improvement since at high iso , and f2.8 is not as important any more.

As I have the sigma I won't be vetting the pentax lens and I also use this lens with the sigma TCs so it is a good system fit for me
11-11-2010, 06:17 AM   #3
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The differences are pretty obvious:

Pentax : more reach at both ends, SDM, weather resistance
Sigma : faster

Indoors for concerts, WR is not really relevant. Both lenses are seen as great optically. I recommend looking at your current pictures, and deciding if f4 is enough. This might answer your question for you. And look at samples from the Sigma at f2.8, to see if you like the output wide open.
11-11-2010, 02:28 PM   #4
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I've always wondered why on earth would Pentax make this lens F4 only?!

Is there all that much difference between F4 & F2.8?

11-11-2010, 02:52 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by Christopher M.W.T Quote
I've always wondered why on earth would Pentax make this lens F4 only?!
If it were F/2.8, it would be twice as heavy and cost twice as much, and I wouldn't be able to touch it.

Pentax DA 60-250mm F4 ED IF SDM, $1200, 2.7 lb, 6.6 in, 67mm

Noone else makes 60-250mm zoom lenses.

Here are some lenses with F/2.8:

Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L II IS USM, $2000, 3.3 lb., 8 in., 77mm
Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8G ED VR II AF-S, $2000, 3.3 lb., 8 in., 77mm
Sony 70-200mm f/2.8 SSM, $1800, 3 lb., 7.8 in, 77mm

QuoteOriginally posted by Christopher M.W.T Quote
Is there all that much difference between F4 & F2.8?
The difference is, well, one stop.

Is it all that much? It depends....
11-11-2010, 04:36 PM   #6
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Cheers. I've read some comments saying the 60-250 is only really 200mm is that true?
11-11-2010, 04:42 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Christopher M.W.T Quote
Cheers. I've read some comments saying the 60-250 is only really 200mm is that true?
At close focus that's probably true, at infinity focus it will be a "true" 250mm. I saw a review of the Nikon 18-200 which @ 200 was the same magnification as the 35-135 @ 135mm when close focused. But the same issue will also affect the Sigma, so at 200mm and close focused I'd imagine it would be equivalent of ~150mm. I understand all internal focusing zooms suffer the same issue. Happy to be corrected though.
11-11-2010, 04:49 PM   #8
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It may also depend upon what camera you have. Some places I take shots I have to have f2.8 just to get enough light and fast enough shutter and still at ISO 3200-4500 with my K-7. With a K-5 this may not be an issue at f4 as you can push the ISO up further with good results.

11-11-2010, 06:14 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Christopher M.W.T Quote
Cheers. I've read some comments saying the 60-250 is only really 200mm is that true?
As other have said, at you getting closer and closer to the minimum focus distance, the max focal length gets smaller. Back when I first got the 60-250 I tested it and if I recall correctly, as you get close to the MFD, the focal length is around 130-135mm. I forget at what focal distance it passes 200mm, but I know by about 80 ft (25 m) the focal length is over 235mm.
11-12-2010, 04:08 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Christopher M.W.T Quote
I've always wondered why on earth would Pentax make this lens F4 only?!
Is there all that much difference between F4 & F2.8?
Me too, and yes, oh my, yes. Have you seen how big it already is @ f/4? It would be 100%? 150%? 200%? larger & heavier @ F/2.8 ... and price.... Hahahaha... the price.

Face it, we Pentax owners are cheapskates. Few already buy the 60-250/4 now. Sales would be nearly non-existent @ f/2.8. ...don't get me wrong. Me, I can afford it, and I already have a 300/2.8. I wouldn't care that it would be like 5 lbs, and that the 60-250/2.8 would cost a good deal more than a 300/2.8 prime goes for today (I bought mine at a much better price @ the time than you can get one for today). Me, I'd be more inclined to buy the 60-250 at f/2.8 than I am at f/4. But I'm an exception from most of the Pentax owners/buyers.

With all that said, and in the light that I'm about to get the K-5 with incredible high-ISO performance, I'm wondering this very same thing and came to this forum section to make a thread about the exact same topic; being a good PF citizen, I checked for an active thread and found this. I thought I made-up my mind to get the Sigma 70-200/2.8 (tho I was still considering the 50-150/2.8 too); I even bought a Tamron 1.4X TC with Pz contacts to use with it. ...but now I'm back to thinking about the Pentax.

Big Pluses: I need a Weather Sealed lens, DA* quality, and its range makes it incredibly useful if outside in foul weather.

Big Minus: Reported SDM problems, Speed of focus, and I suspect a updated version using a DC motor might be released soon.

Last edited by m8o; 11-12-2010 at 04:18 PM.
11-12-2010, 04:22 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Arpe Quote
It may also depend upon what camera you have. Some places I take shots I have to have f2.8 just to get enough light and fast enough shutter and still at ISO 3200-4500 with my K-7. With a K-5 this may not be an issue at f4 as you can push the ISO up further with good results.
QuoteOriginally posted by dgaies Quote
As other have said, at you getting closer and closer to the minimum focus distance, the max focal length gets smaller. Back when I first got the 60-250 I tested it and if I recall correctly, as you get close to the MFD, the focal length is around 130-135mm. I forget at what focal distance it passes 200mm, but I know by about 80 ft (25 m) the focal length is over 235mm.
U2 may have just talked me back into getting the long Sigma...

Signed,
Agonizingly Indecisive
11-12-2010, 05:10 PM   #12
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I (pre-ordered) a Sigma (HSM version) while the 60-250mmwas still in its extended gestation. I use it quite a bit (for outdoor evens and field sports) and like what it delivers in terms of IQ. That said, if I were making the decision now, I'd probably go with the DA* for the extra length and the weathersealing (I rarely use the Sigma below f3.5 anyway). I might hesitate because of the SDM issues, though: true, my Sigma's HSM did fail earlier this year but it was fixed for free thanks to the superior Sigma warranty.
11-12-2010, 05:27 PM   #13
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Is the Sigma 70-200/2.8 internal focus and thus not 200mm @ all focus distances? I don't see 'internal focus' on the B&H details page for it, but I don't see that on the Pentax 60-250/4 page either, so that leaves the matter up in the air.
11-12-2010, 05:57 PM   #14
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"Internal focus" to current zoom lenses is like "fuel injection" to current car engines.

You see it advertised when it is a novelty. Then when it becomes the default, noone mentions it anymore.
11-15-2010, 09:35 PM   #15
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I got the Sigma 70-200/2.8 ... My gawd, K-5 + Sigi70-200 is a match made in heaven! It's going to be mounted on the camera a lot.
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