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Sigma 70-300mm F4-5.6 APO DG Macro Review RSS Feed

Sigma 70-300mm F4-5.6 APO DG Macro

Sharpness 
 7.9
Aberrations 
 7.8
Bokeh 
 7.9
Autofocus 
 7.4
Handling 
 7.7
Value 
 9.3
Reviews Views Date of last review
39 153,535 Thu September 20, 2018
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Recommended By Average Price Average User Rating
97% of reviewers $193.03 8.05
Sigma 70-300mm F4-5.6 APO DG Macro

Sigma 70-300mm F4-5.6 APO DG Macro
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Sigma 70-300mm F4-5.6 APO DG Macro
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Sigma 70-300mm F4-5.6 APO DG Macro
supersize
Sigma 70-300mm F4-5.6 APO DG Macro
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Description:
This 70-300mm zoom telephoto was made in numerous versions and generations by sigma - 4 versions listed in the legacy zooms section, two in the current zooms section (see here for the current non-"apo" version).

Sigma’s 70-300mm F4-5.6 DG APO Macro is a compact autofocus telephoto zoom lens with a zoom ration of 4 to 1. Its range is useful for portraiture, capturing children playing in the backyard, amateur sports and capturing animals at the zoo. In macro mode the lens offers 0.5x magnification.


Sigma 70-300mm F4-5.6 APO DG Macro
© www.pentaxforums.com, sharable with attribution
Image Format
Full-frame / 35mm film
Lens Mount
Pentax K
Aperture Ring
Yes (A setting)
Diaphragm
Automatic, 9 blades
Optics
14 elements, 10 groups
Mount Variant
KAF
Check camera compatibility
Max. Aperture
F4
Min. Aperture
F32
Focusing
AF (screwdrive)
Quick-shift
No
Min. Focus
95 cm
Max. Magnification
0.5x
Filter Size
58 mm
Internal Focus
No
Field of View (Diag. / Horiz.)

APS-C: 23.1-5.4 ° / 19.4-4.5 °
Full frame: 34.3-8.2 ° / 28.7-6.8 °
Hood
Included
Case
Included
Lens Cap
Included
Coating
Weather Sealing
No
Other Features
Diam x Length
76.6x122 mm (3x4.8 in.)
Weight
550 g (19.2 oz.)
Production Years
(in production)
Pricing
$249 USD current price
Reviews
User reviews

Buy Lens: Buy the Sigma 70-300mm F4-5.6 APO DG Macro
Price: $199
Mount Type: Pentax KAF2/KAF (screwdrive AF)
Price History:



Add Review of Sigma 70-300mm F4-5.6 APO DG Macro Buy the Sigma 70-300mm F4-5.6 APO DG Macro
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Sort Reviews by: Date | Author | Rating | Recommendation | Likes (Descending) Showing Reviews 16-30 of 39
Inactive Account

Registered: June, 2011
Location: kentucky
Posts: 21
Lens Review Date: November 27, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $239.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: well built, good value, great in good light
Cons: noisey
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 7    Bokeh: 6    Autofocus: 7    Handling: 8    Value: 9    New or Used: New   

if you are on a budget and cant afford the Pentax da lens of this focal length, Then this is the lens for you! it is well worth the cost even if ya buy it new! I have tried many lenses in the 300mm range from pentax, quantaray, tamron,sigma,tokina etc etc and this one is second only to the DA/DAL pentax! This lens can produce some outstanding photos in good lighting conditions. Go to my flickr page to see some nice examples.http://flicikr/p/aKn5z6
   
New Member

Registered: August, 2011
Posts: 1

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: August 29, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $250.00 | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: excellent in price class
Cons: switching off the macro slightly difficult for a new user
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 10    Bokeh: 9    Autofocus: 9    Handling: 9    Value: 10   

I bought this lens yrs ago and I steel like it

It's excellent lens in price class. If you want to buy a better one, you must pay more,
   
Veteran Member

Registered: June, 2011
Location: Chester
Posts: 719
Lens Review Date: August 22, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $200.00 | Rating: 6 

 
Pros: Range Price Optics at long range Bokeh
Cons: Poor macro Stiff zoom ring Feels cheap
Sharpness: 7    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 9    Autofocus: 5    Handling: 3    Value: 7   

A decent lens for a reasonable price. It feels horrible to use though. I've had old manual focus lenses and brand new DA* lenses. Compared to these, this lens feels like you got it at McDonald's. But if you can get over the way it feels, it's actually a decent performer. Don't be fooled my the macro though. It can focus close, but the quality drops rapidly.
   
Site Supporter

Registered: April, 2011
Location: Lost in translation ...
Posts: 17,502
Lens Review Date: July 16, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $250.00 | Rating: 7 

 
Pros: Overall bang for the buck (or Euro, in my case), Ap ring
Cons: No zoom lock + creep, clunky hood, difficult "macro" shift button
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 7    Bokeh: 7    Autofocus: 7    Handling: 8    Value: 8    New or Used: New   

Bonjour,

I am relatively happy with this lens, except that the top end (+ 200mm) is rather soft. The pseudo "macro" function is nice to play with, but the shift buttom on my copy is getting harder and harder to manipulate recently. Cons: AF can be slow, hunt, noisy ... and there's lots of other possible complaints, but what do you want from a lens at this price point? (DA* IQ, speed, etc.?) In comparison, I prefer the DA 55-300 that I purchased after this lens, somewhere around 50%+ more cost, but worth the additional investment, especially for the top end focal range. Hopefully, someday I will be able to compare these two lenses to a DA* zoom ... pocketbook willing, of course.
   
Site Supporter

Registered: January, 2009
Location: East Bay Area, CA
Posts: 6,102
Lens Review Date: May 18, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: None indicated | Rating: N/A 

 
Pros:
Cons:

For some reason, my photo of the non-APO DL version of this lens is pictured above (purple velvet background), so just a note of correction that the lens in the picture is actually this one:
https://www.pentaxforums.com/userreviews/Sigma-70-300mm-F4-5.6-DL-Macro-Super...or-Pentax.html

my review has been deleted.

I'll say this another way, the photo of the lens in this thread (purple velvet background, lens has a red ring) is the non-APO version. I submitted that photo for the DG version and it got used here. buyers beware.
   
Veteran Member

Registered: March, 2009
Location: Ohio, USA/ India
Posts: 475

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: May 15, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $220.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Great IQ, light,
Cons: slow

This lens was my first telephoto purchase. The IQ is stunning. My first PPG acceptance was an image from this lens. It is very sharp on my K20 D. It is true that I have not used the lens in almost a year every since I got the sigma 70-200 2.8, but I would not hesitate to take the lens if I need the reach and want to travel light. The only negative is a slow variable aperture.
   
Veteran Member

Registered: March, 2011
Location: Maryland (Right Outside Washington DC)
Posts: 2,902
Lens Review Date: April 21, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $230.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Descent Build Quality, Good Range, Low Price, Decent Performance
Cons: LOUD Autofocus, Macro Button

For the money, this is a good lens, possible one of the best for its range/cost. You can pull sharp images from this lens, the sweet spot for this lens is 70-135 @ f5.6~11 (with good lighting).

Note: If you are shooting wildlife pictures in the woods at a close distance, you will need to turn auto-focus off, the auto-focus is extremely loud on this lens and will scare off any animal within a 30 yard radius of you.


The Good: Inexpensive, Sharp at the above mentioned sweet spot range, Fast Auto focus, Produces good image quality

The Bad: Loud Auto focus, Macro Button design is horrible

Bottom Line: If you are looking for a good piece of glass with the 70~300mm range and you are on a budget, this lens is a great choice.
   
New Member

Registered: August, 2008
Location: bremerton, wash.
Posts: 6

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: February 24, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $230.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Very sharp on a TRIPOD. VERY TOUGH BODY. LOVE THE COATINGS
Cons: I would of liked a 3.5 opening for indoors.

I have used it for about 2 years. I have had to take it in for cleaning when i worked some sage brush up around Steam Boat Rock in North washington State. Zooming in and out sucked in sage brush dust. Other wise i use it alot. When pointed down there is NO LENS CREEP. I do all out door photo work and it has been good for me. Up around salt water in storms I have no trouble with it. It is a tough lens. The Macro is really sharp. A mono pod is best with this lens to cut out some motion. It is very sensitive to shakey hands. Rather, if you climb up a hill and am out of breath and your 65 year old heart is hammering, rest a bit or use a pod of sorts. Boka is nice with a UV lens or better a neutral gray lens. I have the 120-400 Sigma and the 70-300 is 1/2 the weight and size. The 120-400 is super quiet and a bit sharper than the 70-300 but a beast to carry. The 70-300 is a bit noisey on focus but easier to carry around. I am so used to reaching for it i would buy it again in a heart beat. I swear i would prefer to support Pentax but none of their 70-300 have Macro. Oh, ok, if i see a good deal on a Pentax 55-300 F4 i would get it and my conscience would feel better. But then i would have to get my Pentax 100mm 2.8 back that i gave to my son as i would need a macro for travel. I don't get it. Why doesn't Pentax put more Macro on their lenses? I do think the DA 35 Macro 2.8 is a "have to have lens". But that is a "wana have" for me now................ KEEP LOOKIN FOR BEAUTY....................
   
Senior Member

Registered: August, 2008
Location: St. Louis, MO
Posts: 139

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: December 9, 2010 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $189.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Really fine sharp lens for the price
Cons: Slow lens

For what it is, this lens is great. Does it do the job my $750 Tamron 70-200 2.8 does? No, but it does a good job and is sometimes closer than one might think. I am regularly amazed that a lens that I paid less than $200 for new, can produce truly exceptional pictures, but this one is capable of doing just that. With F-stops of only 4-5.6 wide open this isn't a fast lens. But you have to compare what the lens does for its' cost. When you do that, this lens is not just good it's truly exceptional.

Another really nice thing about this lens is that while the macro section isn't true macro, it focuses quite close and allows the shooter to create some very nice macro type shots.

Sigma did this same lens in a non APO version. I had that lens as well, but didn't keep it. It can create some decent shots, but the APO version is much better and doesn't cost all that much more.

This lens is capable of producing pictures that are truly exceptional. At present it has the longest reach I have. While it's not the best glass I have in my camera bag, it's one of the best bargains. As a light weight lens I don't see myself getting rid of it even as I continue to build my kit.
   
Site Supporter

Registered: November, 2010
Location: san francisco bay area
Posts: 28
Lens Review Date: December 9, 2010 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $209.00 | Rating: 7 

 
Pros: sharp wide end, macro, sturdy, nice hood, value, full frame
Cons: long extension, soft beyond 200mm
Sharpness: 6    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 7    Autofocus: 6    Handling: 6    Value: 10    New or Used: New   

As some of the others have pointed out and as some professional reviews show (see slrgear, photozone.de) this is a pretty sharp lens from 70 to around 140 mm stopped down with good contrast and color. It also has no distortion or CA's in that range. As a result it is great for outdoor portrait shots of kids and pets. Surprisingly the out of focus background is smooth too.

The lens is even decent at 200mm @F10, but it gets progressively less sharp as you go from 200mm to 300mm and it is only sharp in the central part with soft corners. Honestly it is poor overall at 300mm.

Macro can be activated for the 200mm to 300mm range and it does very well with butterflies,bees and fl owers. A very useful feature, although it does not completely replace a true Macro lens (Tip, use HS flash setting on external flash if possible and get that F stop up with 250 shutter for better macro shots). Somehow it seems to be sharper with Macro on and close focusi ng.

The build quality is good and sturdy. However, the zoom ring is a little stiff and non linear which detracts some from the quality feeling. The focus ring works wells which is handy for Macro mode. The hood is large and it includes a nicely made and padded storage case. Relative to other z ooms it is fairly compact and light. It is not much larger than the DA 17-70 for example.

Overall I'd say it is a very good value. How is that, you say, when it is terrible at 300mm? Well it is so good at the other end that I strongly recommend this lens for outdoor portraits and larger macro work with the 200mm - 300mm range handy in a pinch. However, I do not recommend it if your primary goal is to take sharp nature photos above 200mm.






   
Senior Member

Registered: July, 2009
Location: High Desert, California
Posts: 231
Lens Review Date: September 27, 2010 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $219.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Solid Construction, bang for the buck
Cons: Depends - there are better lenses

This is definitely a bang-for-the-buck kind of lens. Which means for the price paid you get a good deal but there are better options available if you wait and save. For example, save for the Pentax 55-300. Whether this is important to you depends entirely on how important the long end of the range is too you. I shoot a lot at the long end so the difference matters to me, the 55-300 is definitely a better lens. But that said this Sigma lens is not terrible by any means. The image center stays reasonably sharp throughout the range. The colors are good; the lens is built like a tank; the price is great. Also, the close-focus ability is fun to play with. Even tho I've upgraded to the 55-300, I've kept my copy of this lens for the times when I'm in rough conditions. So depending on your budget and/or your requirements for this focal range, this lens can be an excellent choice.
   
New Member

Registered: October, 2009
Location: Oslo
Posts: 3
Lens Review Date: July 31, 2010 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $250.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Great focal range, optical quality at 70 mm, price
Cons: Noticeable drop down above 200mm, AF accuracy speed and noise, rotating front element

First of all, I went through the dilemna of: this lens or the original Pentax 55-300 (surely like many others)?
I chose this one because it was 30% shorter on price (which was big on my tiny budget) and because I was not planning on using the 300 mm much.

I love this lense at 70mm, especially for portrait. And the optical quality is there straight from f4.

The longer focal, the worse comes. The drop is noticeable after 200 mm which is acceptable for me, but not for the one planning on shooting regularly at longe range tele.

It makes me think this lense is a 70mm prime to which was added an option for longer focals.

The rings are not very smooth but the build quality is good even if it really feels plastic. The lense i heavy and this gives an "expensive lens effect" and the finition is acually quite nice.

The package comes with a nice lens hood which requires some trick to put on: if the lens is already mounted and the AF of the camera body engaged, you will notice that rotating the lense hood in place will turn against the AF motor - which is never recommended.

All in all, you will appreciate tele photography with this lense, at a low price.
   
New Member

Registered: June, 2010
Posts: 15
Lens Review Date: June 29, 2010 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $250.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Good value, range from 70-250mm are sharp, over 250mm goes downhill but its acceptable, Marco function is a bonus and it does produce some good pictures if uses carefully
Cons: Zoom ring is kind of stiff but get used to it after a while

I would certainly recommend to people who does not want to spend more than 300 dollars on a tele zoom lens because it offers very good value and the build quality is relatively good.
   
New Member

Registered: June, 2010
Location: Wiltshire
Posts: 24

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: June 24, 2010 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $250.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Value for money, flexibility, performance
Cons: For the price - too few to mention

In my view this lens is often unfairly maligned, especially for its so called 'poor performance' at 300mm. Whilst it may not bear comparison with a lens costing 10 - 20x as much, IMHO its very good for the price. The close focus facility and working distance are an added bonus, especially when photographing insects, as I hope you will agree these images captured with the lens show (originals can be seen in my album):
   
Veteran Member

Registered: December, 2009
Location: Bucharest
Posts: 482
Lens Review Date: April 24, 2010 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $270.00 | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Excellent price/quality ratio, 1:2 macro
Cons: none really, for the price

Everything was already told above in the positive reviews.

It is an inexpensive zoom, with macro 1:2 that works ok, I have chosen it over the 55-300 from Pentax due to the price/quality, the macro capability and the fact that it is a FF lens that I can use on the MZ-L film camera.

Due to the length of the throw of the focusing barell AF is not the fastest in the world but if one avoids switching from 3 feet to infinity from frame to frame it works ok.
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