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Sigma 75-200mm F3.8 Autofocus

Reviews Views Date of last review
16 52,135 Sun January 12, 2020
Recommended By Average Price Average User Rating
94% of reviewers $83.25 8.31
Sigma 75-200mm F3.8 Autofocus

Weight: 666 Gramm incl. cap and lens shade
Length: 135 mm incl. cap, 160 mm incl. cap and lens shade
Filter Diameter: 55mm
Min. Focus: 120 cm
Min. Aperture: F22
Optical Construction: 12 Elements in 9 Groups
Start: 1987
End: 1989
Mount Type:
Price History:

Add Review of Sigma 75-200mm F3.8 Autofocus
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New Member

Registered: April, 2015
Posts: 11
Lens Review Date: January 12, 2020 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $115.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Sharp; colour tones; fully-compatible
Cons: CA and noisy AF
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 7    Bokeh: 10    Handling: 6    Camera Used: KS-2    Autofocus: 8    New Or Used: Used   

In AF performance and noise, it is MUCH better than Pentax F 70-200mm f/4-5.6.
Sharpness is quite good for portraits. Good contrast and warm colours. CA is not a big issue with several external flashes in indoor environment.

This lens is also available for Nikon users BUT it doesn't work with AF on most newer Nikon cameras (with screw-driven AF) because of compatability firmware issues Nikon incorporated to ensure that only Nikkor old lenses are usable. However, for Pentaxians, this is not an issue and this lens works flawlessly on all Pentax DSLRs.
New Member

Registered: May, 2016
Location: Arkansas
Posts: 13
Lens Review Date: March 18, 2019 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $40.00 | Rating: 7 

Pros: All metal construction, constant aperture, sharpness
Cons: AF speed/accuracy, color rendition
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 7    Bokeh: 7    Handling: 7    Value: 10    Camera Used: k-1    Autofocus: 4    New Or Used: New   

Had this lens for awhile. Used it on k20d a bit, but once I got a DA 70 ltd. I used it instead for portrait work. First the good. Sharpness is very good across the frame even on the K1, no apparent issues with resolving power IMHO. Zoom creep will occur but I've had A LOT worse, I really didn't even notice it, this is probably more of a case-by-case issue anyway. My 70-200 Takumar - A Macro actually makes a "clunk" when turned down! Color with the natural setting on the K-1 was just acceptable, nothing to write home about. Bokeh was OK, not distracting but nothing to write home about either. Very little separation with subject - no "3D" pop. There were not noticeable optical (pincushion) or chromatic aberrations that would warrant comment.

Now the not so good. AF was not great. LOTS OF HUNTING in broad daylight, sometimes it would not even allow the camera to fire after much hunting. Works worse when a light source is near or within the frame,duh, but this lens was the worst I've had for this situation. At times the camera would fire and I thought to myself "yeah, right, I'm sure that was in focus." Turned out most of the images WERE in focus even though it was squirreling around like it was not. I finally thought to use center point only and AF-S and it was better behaved (as a poster below also noted). Basically I never could get comfortable trusting the focus at all, but the results were mostly good.
Vignetting was pronounced at f4 (3.8) at the long end (see picture). I've attached before and after images below. I did not take any time in PP the second image.
Contrast of the lens seems pretty mediocre to me, but it is a film era lens and not a top-of-the-line Sigma EX, so you get what you pay for here. Color was OK but not "Very Good".

Finally the strange. This lens registers as a Pentax-F 70-210 f4-5.6 in the EXIF data and will not register 3.8 in-camera.
In rating this camera I did NOT take into account the price paid, which is what I think all of us should do when rating a lens. I would give this lens a 6.5 but that is not possible, if the price paid was taken into account I would give it probably a 9! For $40 it was a great buy.

Site Supporter

Registered: October, 2016
Posts: 171
Lens Review Date: October 29, 2017 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $25.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: Sharp, Constant aperture, well built
Cons: causes AF to be weird, Some PF in bright sun
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 7    Bokeh: 7    Handling: 8    Value: 9    Camera Used: KS-1    Autofocus: 7   

When I saw one bundled with a zx-7 and I read this lens was based on the Zeiss Jenna zoom curiosity and LBA got me. I needed to try it.
Mine is in very good shape and the only complaint I have is a propensity to zoom creep.

Image Quality - I am very happy with the sharpness of the lens. As you can see from the 100 percent butterfly crop the details are very nice.

Aberrations - I did see some purple fringing on some shots I took in stark sunlight. Otherwise it was well behaved

Bokeh - Bokeh is good if not somewhat muted.

Handling - The lens is not light but it handles pretty well once you get used to it.

AF - Sometimes my camera would accurately snap he AF in no time and others it would go back and forth not deciding on which target to pick. I found that using center focusing caused the lens to act better in the AF department.

Conclusion - I would rate this lens about a 8.25. It is very comparable to my Pentax F 70-210 except I feel the Pentax handles bright conditions better than the Sigma.

New Member

Registered: June, 2017
Location: Montreal
Posts: 23

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: July 5, 2017 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $125.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Sharp, nice colors
Cons: Pull/Push isn't super easy, not best AF
Sharpness: 10    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 8    Value: 10    Camera Used: K-s2    Autofocus: 7    New Or Used: 9   

Bought this on the marketplace.

Very sharp lens, very nice colors too, based on carl zeiss design. At 200, so far, I like this better than the Pentax M 200mm f4. There is some sort of macro too which is nice. Fun lens overall.

Only shows f4 when in A mode. Tried both A f4 and M f3.8 and it looks the same. I think it's just the sensor that can't understand the thing correctly. Doesn't matter since it's the same result.

Push/Pull is a bit weird at first but it's easy to use when you get used to it. Can focus and zoom with one hand easily even though some people complained about the ring being small.

AF is OK. Not the fastest and get lost sometime but it works. A bit of purple fringe at f3.8 but otherwise it's good. AF is faster somehow in the viewfinder than live view. Go figure.

Junior Member

Registered: January, 2013
Location: WV
Posts: 36

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: April 10, 2017 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $90.00 | Rating: 7 

Pros: colors, cheap
Cons: creep, manual focus
Sharpness: 7    Aberrations: 6    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 7    Value: 9    Camera Used: K-5iis, K-1    Autofocus: 6    New Or Used: 8   

Some walk around shots

Decent lens. Camera doesn't go to 3.8, displays 4. Never really tested exposure difference between "A" and F/4 vs "M" and 3.8.

Creeps something awful when walking around, have to be aware of where the lens is pointing or it will extend.

Good, strong construction. Tiny focus ring is almost useless.
New Member

Registered: March, 2015
Posts: 21

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: April 30, 2016 I can recommend this lens: No | Price: None indicated | Rating: 7 

Pros: All-metal build, constant aperture
Cons: Messed-up EXIF, aberrations
Sharpness: 6    Aberrations: 6    Handling: 7    Value: 8    Camera Used: K-5    Autofocus: 7   

I got this as part of a kit at a charity auction in nearly mint condition, so it's hard to tell what it cost me. Considering what I paid and what else was in the kit I'm tempted to say it was basically for free. It plays roughly in the same league as the Pentax DA 50-200 WR, so that's what I'm going to compare it to mostly. I've only had it for a few days, though, so this is more like a "first impressions" rather than a full-blown review.

Construction and handling
Over all, this lens is only slightly larger but much heavier than the DA. Apart from the aperture- and focusing rings, the window for the distance scale and the rubber grip for zooming, this lens is all-metal on the outside, which gives it a quite solid appearance. It has 8 aperture blades and a 55mm filter thread; the aperture ring feels OK, but certainly not a sexy as an old Takumar . It takes a screw-in type hood 64mm if I measured correctly. The hood screws into the focusing ring and both the hood and the front element rotate while focusing.

Manual Focus is not really fun with this lens. The focus ring is only about 3mm thick and the barrel behind it has a slightly larger diameter, which makes it kind of hard to grasp the DA clearly wins here. You can mitigate this to some point by firmly screwing in a lens hood and using that for focusing. Damping doesn't feel as smooth as a Takumar or FA Limited, but not really worse than the DA 50-200. It rotates about 210, which is a bit more than the DA.

Autofocus seems to be about as fast (or slow) as the DA. Sounds less high-pitched, but also a bit less smooth than the DA, with a noticeable *clonk* when reaching the extremes. Can't really say anything about accuracy etc. yet.

Zoom is push-pull, either you like that or not, I guess. I tend to like it, it feels very smooth and well-damped on my copy. Tends to creep, though.

EXIF data, as others have already pointed out below, is messed up on Pentax DSLRs. My K-5 thinks it is a Pentax F 70-210 1:4-5.6. Shooting wide open results in F4 being recorded rather than F3.8. Not sure if it actually stops down to F4 or not.

Image quality
So far, I've only done a quick series of test shots outdoors around infinity focus, so please take the following with a grain of salt.

At 75mm, the DA 50-200 WR seems to be noticeably sharper or at least more contrasty than the Sigma across the aperture range.
At 95mm, the Sigma nearly catches up and at 200mm I can't really see much of a difference any more. The DA shots still seem to be a little bit sharper, but I had slightly changing weather conditions so it's hard to tell.

Aberrations are definitely worse than those of the DA, but I wouldn't go as far as calling them "horrible" still better than what I'd expect from a lens of this age. "OK", I guess, but keep in mind I've only done limited amounts of testing so far.

Do I recommend it?
Well, it depends. For Pentax APS-C DSLR users: If you want to step up from the DA 50-200, this one isn't worth it. If you don't have a tele zoom yet and are looking for a cheap one, it seems you can get a used DA WR for about the same price. But if you can get a good deal (let's say 50 bucks or less), go for it. For K-1 users: It's a film lens, so it should cover the FF image circle. But is this really a worthy lens for a $2000 body? Probably not. If you're looking for a modern-ish zoom with an aperture ring to stick on you Pentax film body, however, this might be a good choice.

Will I keep it?
At least for now: yes. It probably won't spend much time on the K-5, but I'll definitely try it out on the SFX it came with.

Registered: March, 2013
Posts: 360

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: April 29, 2015 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $60.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: fast, sharp, iq, built
Cons: zoom creep, colors
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 7    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 7    Value: 10    Camera Used: K5    Autofocus: 8   

I bought this lens 18 months ago. I also have Sigma 70-200 f/2.8 HSM II and a few other Pentax and Sigma consumer telephoto zooms but this lens is my favourite telephoto zoom for weekend hiking. Lens is usable at f/4 , very good at f/4.5 and excellent at f/5.6. There is no other consumer lens which are better at 200mm f/4.5 or f/5.6. Pentax F 70-210 is better at some aspects, mostly color, ca and handling, but it is not nearly as sharp as Sigma. Sigma is sharper at 200mm f/4.5 than Pentax at 200mm f/5.6. So, it is a very sharp lens with excellent iq and heavy duty build (metal and glass). Bokeh is great. Handling is not so good because it is push/pull zoom with awful zoom creep. Colors are somewhat different than typical Sigma (probably because of Carl Zeiss Jena design) and those colors couldn't be easily fixed even with raw files in Lightroom. Autofocus is good and loud as any other screwdrive lens, it is somewhat slow in tricky light situations but it is accurate. There are noticable purple fringing in high contrast situations. Size and weight are perfect for hiking if you need telephoto on a hike. There are smaller and/or lighter telephoto zooms but much slower and with lower iq. There is no replacement for this consumer telephoto zoom lens, only Pentax F 70-210 has similar iq but it is much slower.

EDIT: I almost forgot, if you are not satisfied with sharpness of your copy just put your micro focus adjustment for this lens to -10 position.
Senior Member

Registered: December, 2012
Location: Canberra, ACT
Posts: 147

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: November 18, 2013 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $160.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Solid, Cheap, Sharp
Cons: Chromatic Aberations, Zoom Creep, Noisy
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 5    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 7    Value: 10   

When considering the lens versus other lenses, you have to remember what you're paying for it, and not to expect too much for a sub-$100 lens. Is it sharp as a Limited or the 70-200 2.8? Of course not, but for a fraction of the price, it's damn good for what it does, given the age of the piece.

Pros:There's almost no flare when shooting into the sun and relatively, it's quite light. It's got a nice solid feel to it - can't really describe it, but you'll know the feeling if you hold this, then hold a plastic lens. It is actually pretty sharp wide open. The AF isn't super fast, but it's not bad either, it's just noisy.

Cons: Horrible CA but it can be fixed quite easily in Lightroom. Mostly it's the purple fringes which are very prominent. The push-pull isn't as smooth as the twist zooms. I would've much preferred a twist, but for what I'm already getting, I'll live with it.
New Member

Registered: October, 2013
Posts: 2

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: November 9, 2013 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $20.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Unique eye pleasing IQ, sharp, disregarded
Cons: Disregarded often left sitting around, haze/mold, too sticky zoom
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 6    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 8    Value: 10   

I wish I knew the story and the relationship/agreement between Sigma, Tokina, and Carl Zeiss Jena. I accept the connection, just looking through the glass it is apparent of unique coatings and quality to me. These are physically identical to the Jenazoom versions, CZJ East Germany; also Prospec, Promaster, Pro, Exakta, Quantaray, and more. At first I thought mine was a novelty lens, the more I observed it the more interested I became. I took it out for natural light conditions test shots, with and without filters, and discovered it is susceptible to stray light and the internal glare will just destroy the contrast. My sample was overexposing, easily compensated for. For me the images have a unique eye pleasing character, great contrast, and excellent color, extremely impressive for an often "dirt cheap" AF lens. A lens with character is usually a temperamental one requiring more thought in the image process and capitalizing on those rare lighting occurrences when they come along because these can deliver the goods on par with anything. It can separate it's personality from others to be honest if you go the extra mile controlling all. Very sturdy construction, all metal (the only plastic is the quasi-rubber grips) so please don't associate I am speaking of the mount, there is no plastic inside or out, metal covers, metal gears, metal shafts, even the assembly plates holding the moving parts are metal. The zoom feature is little stiff/unsmooth on these as well. CA is controllable and there is no real longitude issues I could detect. Because of glare/ghost issues I would not recommend this lens for use in high contrast situations unless stopped down very well, those situations can easily create stray light which can lead to improper evaluations or determinations regarding a lens. It should be tested using filters this "lens" prefers, far too often CP's and other cheaply made UV's can seriously effect focusing, I didn't finish that evaluation. I am personally fond of this lens and it's potentials, I am not comfortable with it's handling yet ....compared to others in this focal range it's actually not too bad at all, not heavy or awkward at all. Far more manageable than any MF in this range I might add, the Series 1, Tamron 19AH, and some are hefty little chunks.

If you look at these? Make sure you get the straight F/3.8 version and note that some brand labels have this marked as 80-200 F/3.8 same lens exactly. Tells me the lens may be a 77-200mm in reality? My review is not about the 4.5-5.6 versions.
Senior Member

Registered: October, 2011
Location: Cambridge, Ontario
Posts: 179

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: April 14, 2013 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $100.00 | Rating: 8 

Pros: Great sharpness and build is great
Cons: Zoom creep, CA
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 7    Bokeh: 7    Handling: 7    Value: 10   

I have had this lens for two years and use it mostly for indoor sports such as hockey. The optical quality even at wide open is impressive. Outdoors, like any lens it needs a hood. You will have some CA and PF in high contrast scenes but quite acceptable results can be obtained. It has reasonable weight and balances well on the K5.

This certainly is the best bargain I have had. At the price, a must have. I have a screw on 55mm hood and it works well.
Forum Member

Registered: October, 2010
Location: Jakarta
Posts: 96

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: July 29, 2012 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $100.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Solid construction, faster than the DAL 55-300, a bit sharper too.
Cons: Noisy autofocus, shorter zoom range than the DA L, also worse CA.
Sharpness: 8    Aberrations: 7    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 9    Value: 10   

I'm actually giving this 8.5. Was looking for an upgrade to my kit DA L 55-300, but not willing to part with too much money for those shiny f2.8s. So, I snatched this one up the moment I saw someone selling it.

For the price (got this for just under 100 usd in conversion), a damn good lens. It is as sharp as the DA L wide open, and just abit sharper at matching f number. Construction is very good, better than DAs, on par with the Fs and Ms, though I have yet to handle a limited. On the k-x the weight is just perfect, and push pull zoom is fun to use. Chromatic aberration may be a problem in some situations, but for anyone even considering this lens, I don't think it will be a big one. Color is slightly warmer than the DA L. The noisy autofocus is abit of a nuisance, maybe it needs some oiling or something, AF performance is no worse though.

Overall, I think it is safe to say it is a better lens than similar DA telezooms, but probably not as good as the limiteds. In terms of value for money, it is simply unbeatable.
New Member

Registered: January, 2012
Location: Bergamo
Posts: 13

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: January 17, 2012 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: None indicated | Rating: 6 

Pros: Metal made, constant aperture, inexpensive, very solid
Cons: flare, not razor sharp
Sharpness: 5    Aberrations: 6    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 10    Value: 10   

I've bught this lens because of the constant aperture and the metal construction (and the price). At this price is unbeatable, at least as a spare workhorse. The flare could be a problem in certain situations (I don't have a hood) but the effect can be greatly reduced in postproduction. Other aberrations are not a problem. The lens is not razor sharp but sharpness could be enough for a lot of uses (at least for portrait). The feel in the hand is very good (metal made with the right weight for a tele). The autofocus is a bit slow and noisy compared to modern stuff but works flawless. My copy is marked "Access Tempo" (I've never seen this brand before) so this lens exists with at least three different brands (Sigma, Carl Zeiss Jena and Access Tempo). All the functions works well with my K5 except in-camera aberration correction.

Here is an example image

100% crop of the same picture.

New Member

Registered: January, 2010
Location: BC
Posts: 7

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: September 4, 2011 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $99.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Metal build, constant 3.8, sharp
Cons: At that price - none
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 8    Bokeh: 8    Handling: 9    Value: 9   

I bought this lens about a month ago from the local camera shop and I was very pleasantly surprised with the overall performance. As noted above it's a Carl Zeiss - Jena design with an all-metal build. The AF is a little slow and hunts from time to time but we're talking 1987 technology here...It is a one touch zoom (which I personally like) and has a not so slow constant aperture of 3.8 - but it registers as f/4 on my K-7 and K-5. Bokeh is not too bad as it is fast enough make some nice out of focus backgrounds - making for some nice portraits.

All in all, if you see one pick it up!

Registered: September, 2010
Location: Manchester, UK
Posts: 2,605

3 users found this helpful
Lens Review Date: November 17, 2010 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: $65.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Solid build, constant f3.8, sharp
Cons: Weight, 55mm thread hood fitting, front rotates
Sharpness: 9    Aberrations: 9    Bokeh: 9    Handling: 8    Value: 10   

All metal build - a solid Carl Zeiss Jena East German design.

Very sharp even at f3.8 throughout the zoom range. Good colour reproduction. Great bokeh. All auto functions work perfectly with K-7 (except that f3.8 shows as f4). Autofocus speed is on par with other screw drive K mount lenses, not particularly slow. Being a push-pull zoom there can be some zoom creep due to its weight when pointing up or down. The front element rotates with focus which might be an issue with polarisers.

It is not the lightest of telephoto zooms but is well balanced on a K-7 body. A keeper

Senior Member

Registered: December, 2008
Location: MN, US
Posts: 139

1 user found this helpful
Lens Review Date: June 30, 2010 I can recommend this lens: Yes | Price: None indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Build, constant f3.8, price
Cons: None according to the price

The best lens for the price.
Sigma re branded Carl Zeiss glass. Usable constant f3.8(register as f4 on my K7) through zoom range.
Add Review of Sigma 75-200mm F3.8 Autofocus

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