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02-24-2011, 01:34 PM   #1
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Down to the Wire - with the 60-250 still ahead.

As the title says.

Now just a week to go to my new lense and I've dropped the idea of the Sigma 120-400 (IQ and speed), of the Sigma 150-500 (IQ, weight and hand-held shooting difficulty) and of the Sigma 50-500 (weight and hand-held shooting difficulty) .

Still in the race against the 60-250 is the DA*300 and the Sigma 100-300/4. Anything else I've missed ?

You can see what lenses I have already below in my sig. but are there any last minute thoughts re. one of those two (or something else) over the 60-250 ? I must say I've been thinking more and more about the 100-300, as I believe the DA*300 doesn't offer any advantage in IQ or AF speed over the 60-250 and the extra 50mm seems to mean very little at those lengths.

Whilst AF speed is important, IQ is paramount. It is for birding and general use (replacing the 55-300). I will be using the new lense with the Tamron x1.4 Pz version and the AFA x1.7 (compatibility issues with the Sigma I think).

BTW : price differences here are minimal ; US$1,285 for the 60-250 & DA*300 and US$1,365 for the Sigma 100-300/4.

Any and all thoughts appreciated !

02-24-2011, 02:13 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by Frogfish Quote
As the title says.

Now just a week to go to my new lense and I've dropped the idea of the Sigma 120-400 (IQ and speed), of the Sigma 150-500 (IQ, weight and hand-held shooting difficulty) and of the Sigma 50-500 (weight and hand-held shooting difficulty) .

Still in the race against the 60-250 is the DA*300 and the Sigma 100-300/4. Anything else I've missed ?

You can see what lenses I have already below in my sig. but are there any last minute thoughts re. one of those two (or something else) over the 60-250 ? I must say I've been thinking more and more about the 100-300, as I believe the DA*300 doesn't offer any advantage in IQ or AF speed over the 60-250 and the extra 50mm seems to mean very little at those lengths.

Whilst AF speed is important, IQ is paramount. It is for birding and general use (replacing the 55-300). I will be using the new lense with the Tamron x1.4 Pz version and the AFA x1.7 (compatibility issues with the Sigma I think).

BTW : price differences here are minimal ; US$1,285 for the 60-250 & DA*300 and US$1,365 for the Sigma 100-300/4.

Any and all thoughts appreciated !
Perhaps you should discuss the DA*300 vs DA* 60-250 with tcom.
He has both I believe.

- Bert
02-24-2011, 03:40 PM   #3
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I would have thought that the IQ of the DA* 300mm would be better than the DA* 60-250mm... It's a prime after all.
02-24-2011, 04:49 PM   #4
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I have both and while I have not been able to take but about 50 pictures with the 60-250, I would rank them as equals in regard to sharpness. I can see your point of not needing both but I have the DA*300 to use this summer as an outdoors and wildlife lens. The 60-250 replaces my 18-250 and 50-135. I plan for it to be part of a two lens travel kit paired with the 16-50. Have not had a chance to try it with the Kenko 1.5x but I hear it works well.
I would also add that I have used the Kenko TC with the DA*300 and its focus performance is less than stellar. Takes 3 button pushes for it to lock focus.


Last edited by GaryH; 02-24-2011 at 04:52 PM. Reason: added info
02-24-2011, 06:12 PM   #5
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can you actually buy a new Sigma 100-300/4?
02-24-2011, 07:07 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by HGMonaro Quote
can you actually buy a new Sigma 100-300/4?
If you are lucky and find new old stock. It has been discontinued for months now.
02-24-2011, 09:08 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by HGMonaro Quote
can you actually buy a new Sigma 100-300/4?
Over here I can. Or could ! I hope it's still there.

Everything I have read leads me to believe that the 60-250 IQ is on a par with the DA*300 and that is important to me. That being the case - and the pricing being virtually the same for that reason (I'd guess), or in many places the 60-250 costing even a little more, then the added flexibility and IQ over a greater range gives it the edge, for me, over the extra 50mm of the *300.

However that 100-300 range looks even more enticing (I rarely use 60-100 except for macro with the 90 Di) if the IQ is up there with the two Pentaxes. And from what I've read it is.

Am I trying to convince myself here ?

Last edited by Frogfish; 02-24-2011 at 09:26 PM.
02-24-2011, 10:25 PM   #8
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And now for the reality slap. The Sigma 100-300 is a very hefty lens and best paired with the matching TC's. For me WR would also be important. Are you keeping the 55-300, if so the DA*300 would be the best option, if not the DA*60-250. These would both work well with your current TC's. Have fun deciding

02-24-2011, 10:48 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by DreTAX Quote
And now for the reality slap. The Sigma 100-300 is a very hefty lens and best paired with the matching TC's. For me WR would also be important. Are you keeping the 55-300, if so the DA*300 would be the best option, if not the DA*60-250. These would both work well with your current TC's. Have fun deciding
This fun has been going on for month's now However the money is now there so the big day is next week.

I haven't yet decided whether or not to keep the 55-300, maybe as a back-up. Another option of course would be the DA*300 and then start saving for the Sigma 70-200/2.8

In which case I'd sell the 55-300 after getting the Sigma. Hmm this is beginning to sound like a plan.
02-25-2011, 02:14 AM - 1 Like   #10
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This is what Slrgear.com has to say about the Sigma 100-300mm HSM:
+++
Comment on test results 100-30mm HSM vs the DA 60-250mm:
Pentax 60-250mm ƒ/4 ED IF SDM SMC DA* ~$1,200
The Pentax 60-250mm ƒ/4 is nicely sharp across all focal lengths, even wide open at ƒ/4; it may not reach 300mm, but its performance at 250mm is much better than the Sigma. CA performance is excellent, distortion is light.

+++
Link: Sigma Lens: Zooms - Sigma 100-300mm f/4 EX DG HSM APO (Tested) - SLRgear.com!

While photozone.de gives it a much better review:
+++
Verdict

The Sigma AF 100-300mm f/4 EX HSM is the most impressive Sigma zoom lens tested to date. It is capable to deliver a near flawless performance with great resolution figures, low vignetting, low distortions, low CAs and as a nice whipped cream on top the build quality feels just right. It also mates pretty well with the Canon EF 1.4x II converter at costs of relatively high CAs and a somewhat lower but still high resolution. All in all ... highly recommended!

+++
Link: Sigma AF 100-300mm f/4 EX HSM APO - Review / Lab Test Report - Sample Images & Verdict

And here is lenstip.com:
+++
Sigma 100-300 mm f/4 is one of the best verifocal lenses that we tested. Looking at the Pros and Cons comparison you can say only one thing - it is equipment worth recommending!
+++
Link: Sigma 100-300 mm f/4 DG EX APO IF HSM review - Summary - Lenstip.com

I guess, if you are going for the Sigma, that you test your sample before buying. Probably the quality of individual lenses may vary a lot.
Looking at the results of these 3 well respected test sites, I guess slrgear did not get a good lens.

- Bert
02-25-2011, 08:11 AM   #11
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I got my 60-250 last week, and so far I've really enjoyed it. For the second day in a row it's not light enough to shoot, so I'm here posting... bummer.

So far though, the image quality is impressive. Both in the distance, these buildings are across the river, at least 300 feet away.



And up close. While not technically a macro lens, at a meter away cranked out to 250mm it sure gives you some nice shots and bokeh. These shots are hand held with shake reduction on, and very sharp.

02-25-2011, 08:42 AM   #12
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Bert - thank you for all that research - worth a rep point !

Norm - thanks for those pics.

I just can't make my mind up on this. I have had another idea : go for the DA*300 now and then add the Sigma 70-200/2.8 HSM in 3 month's time. A two lense solution rather than one - what do you guys think ?

.... and there is a FA 300 going here for just under US$1,000 too ! *pulls hair out*

Last edited by Frogfish; 02-25-2011 at 09:38 AM.
02-25-2011, 09:42 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Frogfish Quote
I just can't make my mind up on this. I have had another idea : go for the DA*300 now and then add the Sigma 70-200/2.8 HSM in 3 month's time. A two lense solution rather than one - what do you guys think ?
You're not alone, I can't make up my mind either I had both the Tamron 70-200/2.8 and DA*60-250/4 and decided to try out the FA*80-200/2.8 and DA*300 combo instead. Still haven't bought the DA*300 yet, but the FA*80-200 is sitting in a box in my car at the moment...this is going to be a long afternoon waiting to go home to try it out!
02-25-2011, 09:43 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by Frogfish Quote
I have had another idea : go for the DA*300 now and then add the Sigma 70-200/2.8 HSM in 3 month's time. A two lense solution rather than one - what do you guys think ?
I have the 60-250 and like it. My vote:

One-lens solution:
DA* 60-250mm (does everything)

Two-lens solution:
DA* 50-135mm (light and small)
DA* 300mm (long)
02-25-2011, 10:25 AM   #15
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dgaies - I'd really like to hear your opinion on the difference between the Tamron 70-200 and the P 60-250. I don't mind a two lense solution at all if I end up with better speed and IQ.

Thanks for the advice Kammerer. However the 50-135 isn't on the radar at all because I almost never use the 50-100 range (except for the Tamron 90 for macro) and if I go the two lense solution then the Sigma 70-200 HSM has much faster AF, is extremely sharp and has a more useful range (for sports and birds as well as general use).

The *300 & Sigma 70-200 plus the TCs I have ; Tamron x1.4 and AFA x1.7 (not sure if that would work with the Sigma - if not the equally as sharp Tamron 70-200/2.8 will do) would give me :-

70-200 / 2.8
300 / 4
98-280 / 3.9
420 / 5.2
119 - 340 / 4.8
510 / 6.8

Maybe I'm over-thinking this !
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