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12-28-2013, 03:32 AM   #1
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Sigma 8-16mm vs 10-20mm old and new versions

Hey guys,

I'm having a hard time deciding deciding between the 3 lenses as my UWA. I currently have a Pentax 15mm and love it for it's amazing sunburst and flare resistance. However, I find there are times that it's not wide enough and I need at least 12mm or wider.

I'm torn between the 3 lenses as they all seem to have their advantages and disadvantages.

Pros: sharpness, flare resistance and ability to produce sunburst
Cons: unable to take filters (although I have read that you can use a Cokin filter holder and 77mm adapter ring as a solution, but does it take normal circular 77mm filters or do I need to use the square ones made by Cokin? I prefer using higher quality brands.

10-20mm 4.5-5.6
Pros: sharpness, price
Cons: poor rendition of the sun and flare control

Looks like pretty bad rendering of the sun:
Bare Trees and Sun - Sigma 10-20mm Wide Angle Lens

10-20mm 3.5
Pros: better flare control and rendition of the sun than the older model
Cons: 82mm filter, sharpness worse than the old model

I think this might be taken with the f3.5 ver, the sunburst looks pretty good:
Last Summer | HDRshooter

I would definitely choose the 8-16mm if I can use filters on it, but if I can't, then it's not an option since ND filters are very important for me.

Maybe I should also consider the Pentax 12-24mm?

Any suggestions from owners of these lenses especially in regards to the filter use, flare control etc?



12-28-2013, 05:43 AM   #2
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I had 10-20mm 4.5-5.6, and now I have 10-20mm 3.5. I can't say that sharpness is really better on the first, but I can say for sure, that the first time I used the second, I saw that is much better in low light, and has less vignetting. So, between those two, my choice is f3.5. Good not only for landscape, but also for inside photo.
12-28-2013, 06:01 AM   #3
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Or maybe wait a few months until Pentax releases the wide zoom they have on the roadmap?
12-28-2013, 06:06 AM   #4
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Sigma 8-16 does not take round filters.

12-28-2013, 07:06 AM - 1 Like   #5
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Hey I was in this situation recently, tossing up between a 10-20 a DA 15 or the Sigma 8-16. I was after a landscape lens so aperture didn't really matter, but I was after a lens that would last me a long time, was very sharp and was very wide. I settled on the Sigma 8-16 because it is the sharpest and the widest out of all the ultrawide APS-C lenses you can get for the Pentax system (not to mention its fantastic build quality!)

While I was seriously considering the 10-20 I found from reading reviews that it just wasn't good enough optically especially in the corners while the 8-16 shines corner to corner. While I'm no pixel peeper I certainly want glass that can keep up with the ever improving bodies. Another thing to note is the difference between 8 and 10mm is quite large and you certainly appreciate the weird perspective that 8mm gives you when you're out shooting. Check out Ed's review at photouniverse, his glowing review certainly pushed me over the edge into buying it.

I wouldn't recommend waiting for the Pentax ultrawide, like other Pentax lenses it's likely to be pricey and likely to be outperformed by the Sigma/Tamron/Samyang equivalents (looking at you DA 20-40)

In terms of filters, the only one you would really want to use on an ultrawide is an ND filter so if you shoot a lot with ND filters it probably isn't your lens
12-28-2013, 07:20 AM   #6
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Not sure if this is something that you would interest you , but you can always stitch several images with your 15mm. A little extra work ( in the field and post ) but you can go as wide as you like.

12-28-2013, 07:24 AM   #7
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Thing about stitching is it doesn't give you that awesome wide angle "look" when you get nice and close to your subject, stitching can't really replace the perspective distortion of 8 or 10mm
12-28-2013, 07:27 AM   #8
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I you don't consider size and weight the Sigma 8-16 is better choice, but extreme choice (in angle of view).
The 15mm ltd have the great advantage of it's size and weight, his quality is at most equal to the sigma at 15mm f5.6 (with less flare, and stars burst)
The 12-24mm or the future 12-28mm have the advantage of the polyvalence, but is too expensive.

I have owned these lenses, my favorite lens is the 15mm.

12-28-2013, 08:28 AM   #9
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I own the Sigma 3.5/10-20. Pros: very low distortion, good flare control. Cons: color rendition is definitely not as good as by Pentax lenses, for the overall sharpness (not the center only but all the frame) you need close down up to 1:8 or 1:11. The diffraction is first remarkable at 1:11, on the 1:14 the image is very soft and "soap like".
I'd like to buy the Sigma 8-16 because I did not receive yesterday any definitely answer about the new Pentax wide-angle zoom...
12-28-2013, 08:55 AM   #10

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I only have the old Sigma. My current copy has good enough performance for me, and I often use it with ND grad filters, so having that capability at even the 10mm end is nice. I can't say what performance would be on 24+ mp, but I get the impression that almost all lenses are going to come up short at some time in the not-too-distant future. The 8mm Sigma is sharper, from all reports - the new 10-20mm I'm not sure of. I know that once you throw a filter on the front, the lens itself will no longer be your biggest flare problem (and flare really hasn't been a problem for me, but I don't tend to take a lot of flare-prone pictures either. 8mm would be a huge advantage vs. 10mm (and 10mm vs. 12mm, too), I'd think.

Regarding wide-open performance, while depth-of-field with any of these lenses is seemingly vast, my experience has been that best results are usually at much smaller apertures, and not just because of optical performance. You tend to use them for subjects that range from very, very close to far away, and you need small apertures for that if you want everything to be sharp, even with very wide lenses. You do have to be careful with those ND grads, however - even the soft grads can looks a little sharp at f16, for example. And I tend to run out of real estate sometimes on the cokin grads, so you definitely don't want anything shorter.
12-28-2013, 10:13 AM   #11
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I have the 8-16 and wow, it's wide and sharp. You can get filter holders for it from a few different brands too. I sold my Tamron 10-24 (which I really liked) after getting this one due to the overlap with other lenses I have, and I can tell you that the 2 extra mm really make a difference. I'd say go for the 8-16.
12-28-2013, 11:10 AM   #12
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Is the Sigma 8-16mm still available new for Pentax? I don't see it on B&H or Adorama and the B&H link from the PF review comes up as "no longer available
12-28-2013, 11:30 AM   #13
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In Germany still exists: Sigma AF 4,5-5,6/8-16 EX DC HSM Pentax 203961 - I hope to buy it in January.
12-28-2013, 02:49 PM   #14
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Original Poster
Thanks guys for the suggestions! I'm leaning towards the 8-16mm but in the end it all comes down to filters. Not so much CPL but NDs are essential as I do a lot of long exposures.

I have found these links in regards to using filters on the 8-16mm:

How to guide for filtering Sigma 8-16 on the cheap

so i herd u liek filterz (or, how to use filters on the Sigma 8-16mm) - Canon Digital Photography Forums

ND Filter Sigma 8-16mm: Nikon DX SLR (D40-D90, D3000-D7100) Talk Forum: Digital Photography Review

It looks like I can use circular filters on the first 2 methods, and square filters on the last.

Does the Cokin filter holder only take square filters? I would prefer circular ones as I know more reliable brands, not too familiar with square filters. And will the Cokin holder hold other brands of filters such as Lee or Hitech as I heard they are better than Cokin.
12-28-2013, 03:47 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by catastrophe Quote

Does the Cokin filter holder only take square filters?
No, you can use rotating CPL filters as well. But only Cokin manufactured CPL.

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