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06-21-2012, 06:43 AM   #1
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Sigma 70-200 2.8 HSM II vs OS

So I'm in the process of buying my first telezoom. I found it really hard to find which camera body I'd buy 1 month ago and went thru a lot of models from Canon and Nikon to end up with a Pentax. I though that finding the right body was the hardest part. Now I figured how wrong I was. The hardest part is finding the right lens !

I did read many threads about both zooms and many about the tamron too which was my first choice for the overall better IQ but I want this zoom to take pictures of my kids and I don't want to end up with bad pictures because the AF couldn't follow.

So I think It comes down to the sigma 70-200 for the fast AF. From what I understand the OS wouldn't help much for sport so I'm mostly worried about the IQ of the HSM II vs OS. Sigma claims to have increased the IQ when they upgraded to OS version but end users don't seem to agree.

I wanted to get some inputs from users who tried both. I couldn't find any threads about this that actually provided answer. I found some but it was from when the OS version was just released so no one could really answer the questions about the newer version.

My needs are mostly for sports and low (bad lights) situations.

Anyone who tried them both can tell me what is the trade off for taking the HSM II over the OS.

Thanks a lot for your inputs

06-21-2012, 06:48 AM - 1 Like   #2
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I only handled the OS version myself, but from what I've seen this is the better version then the HSM II.

I only use OS when panning, shut down the SR in body and put OS in position II.
06-21-2012, 06:59 AM - 1 Like   #3
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I have hsm II and have not compared it to the OS version.
It is excellent from f4 on and decent at 2.8, but the Tamron is better at 2.8
For sports I usually shoot it at f4-5.6 for depth of field gain anyway.
Sorry I cannot give you comparison to OS version but for the price, weight and if it is primarily for sports I would go with a good used HSM II.
06-21-2012, 07:19 AM - 1 Like   #4
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Like the others, I have one and have not tried the other. My non-OS HSM II has all the IQ I need for semi-professional live music work, much of which I take wide open. If the newer lens is better (and I have no reason to doubt it), it must be bloody amazing.

06-21-2012, 09:51 AM - 1 Like   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by PhilV Quote
Sigma claims to have increased the IQ when they upgraded to OS version but end users don't seem to agree.
Whats your source for this? Have you checked any of the Nikon and Canon sites about this lens? Most rate it better than the Canon L and many rate it close to the legendary and famed Nikkor. This lens is currently unmatched in performance under it's focal range in Pentax mount. Also, have you checked the comparative review here (doesn't give you the comparison of the older model, it does however shed a little light on the performance of the OS version which is nothing short of stellar)? -> Fast Sports Zoom Lenses for Pentax - 70-200mm Sigma & Tamron - PentaxForums.com

Edit: Another reference for IQ is our thread here on the forum: https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-k-5/115277-k-5-sports-photography.html (the photo postings start a few pages in)

Last edited by joe.penn; 06-21-2012 at 09:57 AM.
06-21-2012, 10:30 AM   #6
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In this little article, interview of me:

Door het oog van jouw lens | Ron Hendriks |

Handball: Sigma 70-200 OS
Waterfly: DA*300
Soccer: DA*300
Alletics: Sigma 70-200 OS
Boxing: Sigma 70-200 OS
Beachvolley: FA*85
Golff: DA*60-250
Volleybal: FA*85

I think in general that buying the 70-200mm OS when it is in your budget is a good purchase. I almost never use it at f2.8 since I have the feeling it is to soft for my tast, but I use it at 3.2 and 3.5 when needed. It is in general at f4 at the long end sharper then the DA*60-250mm, but it looses out on the DA*200mm (wich is slower in AF).
06-21-2012, 10:31 AM   #7
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Thanks a lot for the answers to everyone,

Yes I have checked the the in depth review from pentaxforum which was very interesting. What I've seen from end users was that the performance increase wasn't that impressive which is always subjective to the person using it.

I guess reading reviews is a good thing but reading too much tend to make you go crazy. I've seen many Nikon user admit that the sigma was indeed almost as good or just as good as their version which seemed to be painful to say. Considering who gave me their opinion I must come to the conclusion that the sigma is indeed an amazing zoom and those who were complaning either probably got a bad copy or may not be able to admit that Sigma did a very high quality zoom for half of the price of their version of it.

Thanks a lot guys I really appreciate your inputs
06-21-2012, 04:59 PM   #8
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FWIW, dxomark.com has comprehensive tests of all three versions of the Sigma 70-200 (eg on a D3X), and lenstip.com has tests for both the HSM II and OS version.

Interestingly, from the DxoMark tests in particular, the differences between the various versions of the lens are more apparent on full-frame than on crop.

On crop (eg a D7000) the difference in the resolution score is only about 5-10% between the different models of the lens, and on crop the HSM II gets the highest DXO score. On full-frame, the OS version gets the best score.


Last edited by rawr; 06-21-2012 at 05:11 PM.
06-21-2012, 05:21 PM   #9
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When I first got my 70-200mm HSM II, I wasn't impressed with the image sharpness on my K-5. However after I sent in my K-5 to Pentax Japan for focus adjustment, they replaced my K-5 with a new sensor unit. The nett result is this lens is now a lot sharper and focus is spot on, with no in-camera AF adjustments needed. The only other issue with this and some other Sigma lenses is the lens will not lock focus in live view and would require the lens to be re-chipped at a Sigma service centre. As to which version to choose, go with the cheapest. The lenses are sharp enough but make sure camera focus alignment is spot on. Many complaints of poor image sharpness could be due to the camera, not the lens.

Taken at the finish line at a local triathlon. K-5 + Sigma 70-200mm f/2.8 HSM II

Last edited by creampuff; 06-21-2012 at 05:36 PM.
06-30-2012, 04:21 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by RonHendriks1966 Quote
In this little article, interview of me:

Door het oog van jouw lens | Ron Hendriks |

Handball: Sigma 70-200 OS
Waterfly: DA*300
Soccer: DA*300
Alletics: Sigma 70-200 OS
Boxing: Sigma 70-200 OS
Beachvolley: FA*85
Golff: DA*60-250
Volleybal: FA*85

I think in general that buying the 70-200mm OS when it is in your budget is a good purchase. I almost never use it at f2.8 since I have the feeling it is to soft for my tast, but I use it at 3.2 and 3.5 when needed. It is in general at f4 at the long end sharper then the DA*60-250mm, but it looses out on the DA*200mm (wich is slower in AF).
Wow, those shots with the FA*85 really stand out... I can see why people rave about it.
06-30-2012, 04:31 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by jeztastic Quote
Wow, those shots with the FA*85 really stand out... I can see why people rave about it.
Thanks, but somehow I descidet to use some of my best images to present mysel as a photographer
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