Sigma vs. Tamaron

Discussion in 'Digital SLR' started by Al Reid, Nov 24, 2006.

  1. Al Reid

    Al Reid Guest

    Group,

    I'm looking to buy a 70 - 300mm AF lens for my Pentax *istDL. Does anyone
    have any thoughts on the merits of the Sigma 70-300mm f/4-5.6 APO DG Macro
    lens @ 219USD vs the Tamaron AF 70-300mm f4-5.6 Di LD Macro lens @ 189USD.

    I can't see much, id any, difference based solely on specs.

    TIA
     
    Al Reid, Nov 24, 2006
    #1
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  2. Al Reid

    Dimitris M Guest

    I prefer the Sigma.
     
    Dimitris M, Nov 24, 2006
    #2
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  3. I'm looking to buy a 70 - 300mm AF lens for my Pentax *istDL. Does
    Both are considered fine for consumer grade telephoto zooms, from what I
    have read. The Tamron seems more popular. I have the "Quantaray" (Ritz
    house brand) that is made by either Tamron or Sigma, depending on who
    you believe. None of these is generally conisdered in the same class as
    the Pentax DA 50-200 that I use much more often now. It is in the same
    price range as the others if the rebate is still vaid, and I personally
    find I like having the 50-70 range (especially for portrait-type shots)
    available more than I miss the 200-300 range (although I carry a 1.5
    teleconverter just in case) or the "macro" capability (I also carry a
    cheap close-up lens that allows my 50-200 to focus even closer than the
    "macro" zooms). I greatly appreciate how much smaller/lighter the
    50-200 is than the 70-300's. It is now perhaps my most used lens,
    whereas I kind of avoided the 70-300 because of its bulk and because the
    "wide" end was fairly useless for most purposes. But if you know you'd
    need the 200-300 or macro capability and don't want to mess with a TC or
    close-up lens and don't mind the extra size/weight and can live without
    the 50-70 range, or have another lens you like for that, you could
    probably be happy with either of the lenses you are looking at.

    ---------------
    Marc Sabatella


    Music, art, & educational materials
    Featuring "A Jazz Improvisation Primer"
    http://www.outsideshore.com/
     
    Marc Sabatella, Nov 24, 2006
    #3
  4. Al Reid

    Pete D Guest

    I have the 70-300mm DG APO Sigma and it is a pretty reasonable lens. for the
    money.

    Look here for some shots taken with this lens.

    http://www.shuttertalk.com/forums/viewtopic.php?pid=41778#41778

    http://www.shuttertalk.com/forums/viewtopic.php?pid=37487#37487
     
    Pete D, Nov 24, 2006
    #4
  5. Al Reid

    Paul Mitchum Guest

    First of all, it's Tamron. One 'a'. :)

    Second of all: You can find either of these lenses or their
    previous-generation counterparts used on ebay or craigslist. Look
    around; they're not hard to find.

    Also, you might keep your eye on this:

    <http://www.digital.pentax.co.jp/en/lens/roadmap.pdf>

    Depending on your needs, you could get whichever long zoom is cheaper
    and deal with it until the Pentax 60-250 or 70-300 comes along.
     
    Paul Mitchum, Nov 24, 2006
    #5
  6. Al Reid

    Al Reid Guest

    Thanks. Any particular reason? I have the Sigme 105mm DG Macro and it
    seems a little slow to focus and seems to hunt at times. Do you have any
    Sigma lenses and ahve you experienced any problems?
     
    Al Reid, Nov 24, 2006
    #6
  7. Al Reid

    Al Reid Guest

    I've also looked at the Pentax DA 50-200 and it looks like a great lens, but
    I wanted to go a but longer. I also looked at the Sigma 50-500, but it's a
    but more than I want to spend. Do you know of any other reasonable options
    in addition to the Sigma and Tamron.?
     
    Al Reid, Nov 24, 2006
    #7
  8. Al Reid

    Al Reid Guest

    Thanks for the input, Pete. I followed the links, but can't seem to find
    the photos. Does this lens focus reasonable quick? I have a Sigma 105mm DG
    Macro, and it seems to be a bit sluggish. Also, What camera are you using
    it on?
     
    Al Reid, Nov 24, 2006
    #8
  9. Al Reid

    Al Reid Guest

    Thanks. If I understand, your suggestion is to get whichever I can get
    cheapest. Is that correct?
     
    Al Reid, Nov 24, 2006
    #9
  10. Al Reid

    frederick Guest

    Macro lenses can be slow focusing because they have a very long way to
    go from 1:1 to infinity. OTOH, it should be pretty quick focusing at
    longer distances (ie between 5 meters and infinity) - except if it fails
    to lock then it has to wind a long way and back again, even with the
    focus limiter on.
     
    frederick, Nov 25, 2006
    #10
  11. Also MUCH more expensive - costs about as much as *two* DL's. Also MUCH
    bigger and about *three times* heavier than the lenses you are looking
    at - almost certainly more than you'd consider ever hand-holding.
    Frankly, even the 70-300's are borderline as it is, for me. Not that
    they are literally too heavy to hold, but holding one steady enough to
    shoot and get decent results when the center of gravity is so far in
    front of the camera is iffier than I would like under most lighting
    conditions.

    In other posts, you ask about focus speed, and the Quantaray at least
    (which I at leats am pretty sure is made by Tamron) is *extremely* slow
    compared to the DA50-200. I doubt the Tamron or Sigma versions would be
    much of an improvement - they are just as cheap, just as big, just as
    slow (in terms of light made available for focusing), and of course, the
    motor is on the camera, not in the lens.

    Regarding reach, I don't know if you have experience with other systems
    for sake of comparison, but keep in mind 200 on a DL is like 300 on a
    full frame system for reach.
    Well, Pentax makes or used to make a 75-300 also - part of the "FA-J"
    series that are generally considered junk. Cheaper than what you are
    looking at, but that's probably the only advantage. If you're set on
    something in the 70-300 range, you're already looking in the right
    places, I think, unless you do feel like waiting to see what this next
    generation of Pentax telephoto zooms will be like.

    ---------------
    Marc Sabatella


    Music, art, & educational materials
    Featuring "A Jazz Improvisation Primer"
    http://www.outsideshore.com/
     
    Marc Sabatella, Nov 25, 2006
    #11
  12. Al Reid

    Paul Mitchum Guest

    My suggestion is to get the Pentax they're planning on releasing. If you
    don't want to wait, then get something now you can sell later.
     
    Paul Mitchum, Nov 25, 2006
    #12
  13. Al Reid

    Al Reid Guest

    I have many lenses that I have collected over the last 25 years, most of
    which are manual focus. I have a 80-205mm ProMaster that is at least 10-15
    years old and is quite heavy (a little under 2 lbs) and at least 2 inches
    longer than the Sigma or Tamron 70-300. I find that when takng wildlife
    /nature shots that I want a little longer lens and would like to upgrade to
    simething longer/lighter and autofocus. The Tamron is 15.3 oz an 4.7" long.
    The Sigma is 20.8 oz and 4.6" long. So from a weight perspective, the
    Tamron has an advantage. I just have no experience with Tamron.
    Perhaps the Tamron is the right choice for now. I can always buy again in a
    couple of years.
     
    Al Reid, Nov 25, 2006
    #13
  14. Al Reid

    Al Reid Guest

    I agree that the upcoming Pentax lenses look good. I want to get something
    right away, however. I think maybe the Tamron, because of the weight (5 oz
    lighter than the Sigma) may be the way to go in the short run.
     
    Al Reid, Nov 25, 2006
    #14
  15. Al Reid

    Pete D Guest

    Not sure why the links did not work, try these.

    http://www.shuttertalk.com/forums/images/upload/Wattle-Bird.jpg

    http://www.shuttertalk.com/forums/images/upload/Wattle-Bird-2.jpg

    http://www.shuttertalk.com/forums/images/upload/Resize-25-percent.jpg

    http://www.shuttertalk.com/forums/images/upload/100-percent-crop.jpg

    http://www.shuttertalk.com/forums/images/upload/Redback-Spider.jpg
     
    Pete D, Nov 25, 2006
    #15
  16. Al Reid

    Pete D Guest

    Pentax DS, soon on a Pentax K10D.
     
    Pete D, Nov 25, 2006
    #16
  17. Al Reid

    Pete D Guest

    That is pretty normal for real macros to be slow to focus, in macro mode I
    would not be auto focusing anyway.
     
    Pete D, Nov 25, 2006
    #17
  18. Al Reid

    Pete D Guest


    Also have a look at the Sigma 170-500 if you need the length, they are a bit
    cheaper than the 50-500mm Bigma and somewhat smaller.
     
    Pete D, Nov 25, 2006
    #18
  19. As for the previous generation of the Sigma 70-300mm (without the
    "APO DG" designation), avoid it. It is very bad. I understand the
    current version is a decent consumer grade zoom for the money.
     
    Gisle Hannemyr, Nov 25, 2006
    #19
  20. Al Reid

    Dimitris M Guest

    I have the Sigma 70-300. I don't use it much anymore, since I now own the
    Nikkor 18-200 VR and I prefer it mostly because of the convinience and the
    VR. Before buy the 18-200, I use it very much. It is not fast focus,
    especially when in macro or in low light in full tele, but this is normal
    for a lens of this aperture and focal length without internal focus motor.
    That matters is that the optics are surprisingly good for a lens in this
    price. Mine is the APO II macro super, that is exactly the same as the APO
    DG macro. Two years ago, when I tested the lens against the simillar Tamron,
    the results had visible difference. The Tamron was visibly softer. And build
    quality of the Sigma was a little better to my eyes.

    That I don't know if today's Tamron is the same or improved. For that reason
    I didn't say "The Sigma is better" but rather the subjective "I prefer the
    Sigma".
     
    Dimitris M, Nov 25, 2006
    #20
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