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10-04-2007, 09:20 AM   #1
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Is this lens (Sigma 400mm) any good?

I searched a lot, and lots of good info here and in the web, but there is always some ambiguity with these Sigma 400's. I know the APO lenses are supposed to be better. There is one non-APO lens that is lousy but I thought that was a heavier version and this looks like the normal Sigma 400mm and does'nt seem to be heavy.

AND there is the question of oil inside the lens. (I mean liquid, probably oil, right ?)

This is the lens in question

SIGMA TELEPHOTO 400mm 1:5.6 for PENTAX bayonet & Case - (eBay item 260165088420 end time Oct-04-07 18:13:03 PDT)

How much is it worth? and what version of Sigma 400mm is this?


Last edited by pcarfan; 10-04-2007 at 09:27 AM.
10-04-2007, 09:41 AM   #2
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The Sigma 400mm is a decent lens. Not the greatest, but there are a whole lot worse. I'd be wary about this one. The seller doesn't seem to have a clue. He is a bit evasive in his response to questions...or maybe he just doesn't know who to express himself. Who knows for sure. His feedback is fine, but he has purchases/sold unusual items. It seems he is selling an old Sears camera, and this lens was possibly used with it. As much as we all want long glass for our Pentax bodies...I'd probably pass on this one, unless I can get for a real inexpensive price...and I mean, "real inexpensive", (think 'throw away' money).
10-04-2007, 09:50 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by volosong Quote
The Sigma 400mm is a decent lens. Not the greatest, but there are a whole lot worse. I'd be wary about this one. The seller doesn't seem to have a clue. He is a bit evasive in his response to questions...or maybe he just doesn't know who to express himself. Who knows for sure. His feedback is fine, but he has purchases/sold unusual items. It seems he is selling an old Sears camera, and this lens was possibly used with it. As much as we all want long glass for our Pentax bodies...I'd probably pass on this one, unless I can get for a real inexpensive price...and I mean, "real inexpensive", (think 'throw away' money).
I was thinking exactly as 'throw away money', which is $30 including postage may be $40 max for me,and I decided not to pursue as it went above $40 already and decided to drop it (otherwise I would'nt have posted it in a public forum ). I just wanted to see whether I'm not giving up on a hidden gem or something. Now I can sleep better......
10-04-2007, 12:13 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by volosong Quote
The Sigma 400mm is a decent lens. Not the greatest, but there are a whole lot worse. I'd be wary about this one. The seller doesn't seem to have a clue. He is a bit evasive in his response to questions...or maybe he just doesn't know who to express himself. Who knows for sure.
I'd be a bit wary too. He says it's AF, but it looks very similar to my manual focus Sigma A-series 400mm F5.6 shown not attached to the camera in this photo. They do come in black as well as grey. (The lower lens, attached to the K10D, is the Pentax SMC-A 400mm F5.6).

Note the wide focusing ring like the one in the eBay picture; I have the AF version of this lens too, and the manual focus ring is about half that width.

Worth getting confirmation of exactly what it is I'd say.

10-04-2007, 01:05 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by ChrisA Quote
I'd be a bit wary too. He says it's AF, but it looks very similar to my manual focus Sigma A-series 400mm F5.6 shown not attached to the camera in this photo. They do come in black as well as grey. (The lower lens, attached to the K10D, is the Pentax SMC-A 400mm F5.6).

Note the wide focusing ring like the one in the eBay picture; I have the AF version of this lens too, and the manual focus ring is about half that width.

Worth getting confirmation of exactly what it is I'd say.
The photo's you had attached in a different thread about sigma 400mm of the yellow aircraft, the bird and the moon were stunning to say the least. If this lens was used to take that, I may bid a bit higher even with the water droplets. That picture of the manual focus sigma A-series looks the same as the one for biodding, and that is what took the pictures you had posted in the other thread, right ?

WOW! It's over $100 now, pentax owners ARE crazy

Last edited by pcarfan; 10-04-2007 at 01:51 PM.
10-04-2007, 03:09 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by pcarfan Quote
That picture of the manual focus sigma A-series looks the same as the one for biodding, and that is what took the pictures you had posted in the other thread, right ?
The aircraft photos were taken with the AF one. Optically, I believe (though I don't know for certain) that it's the same.

I've taken some moon shots with the MF one quite successfully, although I seem to have improved on them slightly with the Pentax SMC-A 400mm F5.6 recently, which in my tests has considerably less chromatic aberration than the Sigma - not surprisingly.

For those that are interested, this moon (pre-totality, during the eclipse in March this year) was taken with the MF one:



..as was this robin:



and this one, although some purple fringing needed to be removed:



This Tiger Moth was taken with the AF one:



Although the aircraft rather annoyingly doesn't quite fit in the frame, it is uncropped, and it does show quite a lot of detail at its maximum size. For a light, smallish, quick-focusing long telephoto, I think it's very good. Optically not quite as good as the Pentax SMC-A 400mm F5.6, but a lot more usable, since it's a lot smaller, and a pound lighter.
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