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05-27-2019, 12:52 PM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by landofcourtness Quote
I've owned both of these lenses in the past (sadly my Tamron bounced off the ground after a student slammed their backpack on a table one morning)...

So now, I have the Sigma... some people think that the Sigma is better than the Tamron, even now there is a person selling the Sigma 70-200 stating that it is as good as it gets aside from the Pentax. I too was under this impression. However there are definitely differences, though its mostly due to handling, which might be a determining factor.

I think for the most part, both of them are pretty similar in terms of IQ and results. I never felt like one was noticeably sharper than the other or soft in its comparison. I also don't really see that big of a difference in terms of their AF capabilities either... also, if you have never had a lens focus internally, it can be a marvel and a bit disjarring in a way. It was mentioned that the Tamron is newer. I don't think that is the case. Depending on which Sigma version you get, I believe the Sigma is newer, but they are similar in age. I didn't have a problem with using either at all, and really felt that any quality missed was due to my own lack of skill/technique in that moment. Both have a Macro feature, but neither is really that great at all (though I'm not sure your big Tele is the best lens for that anyways)

The Tamron is kind of quirky. It has an interesting MF/AF clutch where you have to pull in/out on the barrel to switch between. It's easy to criticize as it is different than any other lens I've ever had... But, it really isn't difficult to get used to and though clunky at first, you really get to see why they did it. Because of that mechanism, you're essentially able to focus and switch your setting without taking your hand off the barrel. It's really quite genius actually! It does focus with a noticeable mechanism. You can definitely hear it as it moves. The Tamron is also noticeably lighter than the Sigma, which might be a big benefit since Pentax cameras are already mini-tanks. For some reason, it is also usually found a lot cheaper than the Sigma ($450 vs $600 or so). The Tamron just seems to be more versatile overall, and gives the peace of mind to plug-and-play with anything... while the Sigma can be a headache to get support (see below).

I'll say this, one of the reasons Sigma might have the impression that it is better... is because it feels more premium. Everything from the look/design makes the Tamron look even more clunky than before (from that pleasantly weird black material to the gold trim). The Sigma is also slight smaller than the Tamron. It also has a more classic design in the handling: Zoom in the back, large focus on the front. With the HSM, it focuses all internally, and more importantly silently, which makes it feel even more superior (its really impressive!). To switch between MF/AF there is a standard switch on the side right next to tripod-mount (where the Tamron shines, as it takes an extra movement there). But, the support for the lenses are very difficult to get. When I purchased mine, I had to contact numerous different affiliated groups in order to get my lens serviced (SIGMA - USA claimed not to be able to service the lens). In order to have it work on a K-1, it might require a firmware update, which they will also switch out the mount. All of this is normally done free of charge though, so that's a plus. It's just a hassle spending a month or so trying to jump through the hoops. Though the person on the marketplace said it worked perfectly, it appears to have had a faulty HSM ($150 repair). Because of the HSM, while in AF, you can override the focus and make small changes to what is in focus. While you don't really feel that much resistance in the lens when trying (definitely not like newer Pentax branded lenses), I don't believe this is what is intended! and probably what lead to the HSM problem in the first place. Just a word of caution. I can also attest to it not working on teleconverters. Sigma has their own TC, so I imagine it works flawlessly with that. Like mentioned above, it is definitely heavier, but because of the weight of the K-1+Grip, it actually balances well.

All-in-all, if I had to choose one, I'd go with the Sigma if I were to already have both in my hand. I think for the silent motor, smaller size, and more premium/familiar IMO feel. But I'd say if you had to choose between Tamron for $450 and Sigma for $600, then Tamron is the way to go. Neither lens ever disappointed, and the difference is really at a nip-pick level. I can't think of a way that the DFA is that much better (focus override is really nice to have though!)... but I've said that before.
None of the Sigma TCs for Pentax are working with HSM. Sigma note: Products | NEWS | SIGMA GLOBAL VISION

05-27-2019, 12:57 PM   #17
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Well! I really don't like Sigma rendering! It's only one Sigma lens that I like: 105mm macro! In my view, Tamron it's very, very close to Pentax type of rendering and I've had 28-200mm and I have 17-50mm...

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