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Sigma 150-600mm S

Get the Sigma 150-600mm f/5-6.3 DG OS HSM Sports: Adorama | Amazon | B&H Photo | More options

Interest in the Sigma 150-600mm f/5-6.3 DG OS HSM Sports is significant enough to open a dedicated post, gathering the reviews that are worth reading.

If you’re on the fence about buying the lens, I advise you to bookmark this page, as it will be updated regularly!

Reviews

Sample images

 

Videos

Review & comparison vs Canon 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 II, Canon 400mm f/5.6 and Tamron 150-600mm f/5-6.3

Unboxing

Overview

Hands-on

  • Stan Kaslusky

    I’ve been using the Sigma 150-600mm on my Nikon for two years now. Under good light condition it can be really sharp. Birds in flight are no problem and better than my Nikon 80-400mm, In fact over-all I would say its better than the Nikon 80-400mm which costs $800 more. Some shots are soft focus but it usually is in low light. I’m pleased. I recently discovered piccure+ sharpening soft ware. It really improves my soft shots well. Stan

  • Sigma 150-600 S @ 600 mm:

  • Hey everyone.. Just a note to say that after 10000 shots fired on the sigma I am still loving it and have updated my blog with thoughts and statistics of the focal lengths used over those 10000. http://www.davidromaphotography.com/blog/2014/12/sigma-150-600mm-f5-6-3-dg-os-hsm-sport—australian-hands-on-review-with-sample-shots

  • Nikos Delhanidis

    Lenstip MTF C Vs S

  • onthetrail73

    I just got a charge notification on my Visa from B&H Photo for the same amount as the lens and sure enough I called and they said my lens would be shipping out tomorrow morning! This will by my first Sigma!

  • Nikos Delhanidis

    @EarlFargis:disqus Any news about your copy?

  • Jeff Cohen

    some more from the last few days with the sports and canon 70d ,all hand held

  • Nikos Delhanidis

    My copy arrived today and i went straight to airport …. Best 600 reach tele lens i have used so far. And I have been through 200-400 VR with Nikon TCs, Sigma 120-300 & Sigma TCs (this one was problematic even without TC on my D7100), Sigma 120-400 and Canon 100-400L Mk1. Having hopes i will improve issues induced by my hand-holding shake. Its been i guess long since i was using the 200-400 VR.

    http://we.tl/Y4PQD0zsIY

    D7200. Noise Reduction Off. 1/160s handhold.

  • Jeff Cohen

    just a brief update ,when i first got this lens i was getting focus issues with both cameras 70d and 1D3 and did laborious micro adjust tests and so forth as you would normally do ,this cured things to a certain degree but what you gain in one way you lose in another i.e i have never yet been happy with distance shots .
    HOWEVER since altering my settings at the weekend via the USB dock i have now steadied the lenses ability to take sharp shots significantly .the alterations that count are to switch on “dynamic o.s ” ,and change focus to ” focus point priority” it really has made a extreme difference to hand holding and i have also now been able to reset M/A on both cameras to zero .the two shots posted below have both been taken before return to zero so hopefully the next set will be even better.todays tests in the garden certainly look good anyway .more updates to follow as testing continues

    • Nikos Delhanidis

      Thanks for the info!

    • Nikos Delhanidis

      Did you keep after this the in-lens focus adjustments you made previously? or reset to zero both the camera and the lens focus adjustments?

      • Jeff Cohen

        i only made initial adjustments to the camera MA settings ,which turned out not to be needed once i had set the lens up properly ,no MA adjustments were made in lens just the o.s to dynamic and the a/f to focus point priority .
        both my cameras have been reset to zero MA and are working really well

        • Nikos Delhanidis

          i wonder which side the slider for speed vs accuracy should lean for panning fast moving subjects (BIF, aviation, motorsporst)

          • Jeff Cohen

            from my experiences with the lens so far i would go for accuracy over speed every time ,the lens is not exactly slow under any circumstances ,and the main critique i have come up against is re-sharpness .so yes definitely accuracy ,it might well not need it on newer cameras i.e 5D3,1DX,7Dmkii etc but as i use older cameras thats my p.o.v

    • Nikos Delhanidis

      By “focus point priority” you mean this?

      • Jeff Cohen

        yes thats the one nikos ,combine the o.s dynamic one and that one together and you get a very smooth sharp set of shots ,my lad did a bench test this afternoon using a nikon d810 with his 500mm f4 and 1.4 tc ,against my sigma on my 70d ,it seems the results were to hard to call i.q wise ,although it does look like the sigma suffers some focus breathing ,the main difference being of course several thousand pounds or euros .just wish the weather up here would improve the southern u.k is hotter than the med ,where i live is like winter

        • Nikos Delhanidis

          And you saved this combo as C1 (or C2) right?

          • Jeff Cohen

            yes thats correct ,i have C1set up for close to mid range i.e 2.6mtrs to 15mtrs and C2 set for medium to long range 5mtrs to infinity ..

          • Nikos Delhanidis

            You mean you use the C1 & C2 as focus limiters too instead of the default focus limiter switch?

          • Jeff Cohen

            yes it can all be set up with the usb dock ,the one thing i hate is fiddling with switches in the field so as i said before C1 is for close to moderate distance work (hide or semi-macro) and C2 is for long distance stuff

  • Jeff Cohen

    a couple of pics from yesterday with the lens bolted onto the 70d at close range ,i had to engage minimum focusing range so alterations didn’t apply ,but i have now loaded them into C1 .
    so its C2 for long range and C1 for close stuff the squirrel is full frame totally uncropped

  • Jeff Cohen

    after taking a lot of heavy critique about the sharpness of the lens on a certain forum ,i decided the other night to see if i could improve things at all .so grabbing my trusty usb dock i altered a couple of settings ,the focus was changed to smooth to work better with the focus point and the o.s was changed to dynamic .i used these yesterday on my 1D3 which has to now been the poorest performer with the lens and the results have smacked me in the face .a most definite improvement in sharpness and overall performance ,yet to try it on the 70d but will let you know when i do .shots taken hand held btw

  • Manoj

    • Just Me

      I can’t be sure, but it looked like the combination with the 7DII was front focusing which would explain the consistently poor results. He had better results with the 5DIII which mirrors my experience. But I’ve hand held with a 1.4x extender on the 5DIII and not had the issues he had with “camera shake” or the OS.
      So, I can’t agree with this review. I’ve mentioned this before, but when I first got this lens, I thought it was heavy. But after working on my technique a bit, every shot I’ve taken is hand held.
      A few shots, most of which are cropped….

  • Nikos Delhanidis

    Seeing that no distributor was able to guarantee a delivery of C in Greece before the middle of April, i’ve bitten the bullet and ordered one of the existing copies of S from a European online shop. First bunch of S copies for Nikon in Greece have finished and new shipment is expected in the vague first days of April, but its an unknown number and many of them are pre-ordered. I expect to receive my copy of S around Tuesday. In Greece it sells for as low as 1820 euros.

  • Jeff Cohen

    some more shots from this superb lens .from my mid week session

  • Rogerdodge

    Jeff
    Love your shots. It is really making me ache for the delivery of mine.
    I am now being told end of March. I really want it for the Easter break.
    I am going to be using mine on a Canon 7D MkII, and possibly my old 30D.
    (I have a 20D too, gathering dust somewhere)
    I have ordered the Dock too. Is getting the M/A sorted a bit of a faff?
    Cheers
    Roger

    • Jeff Cohen

      dont m/a your lens with the dock if your using multiple cameras ,both my cameras support normal m/a so there done ,you will however need the dock for firmware updates and altering focus lengths and speeds etc quiet a lot you can do with it in fact ,i altered my focus limits in C1 to 4mtrs to infinity to save faffing with switches on close birds ,not yet changed other things but will do when more confident

      • Rogerdodge

        Jeff
        Thanks for that. I can’t really envisage using the lens on my 30D, so I will do the MA on the 7D MkII.
        I now actually have my lens! – or I did.
        It is on loan to that nice man at Wildlife Watching Supplies who is using it to create his excellent neoprene lens cover for the 150-600 Sport.
        http://www.wildlifewatchingsupplies.co.uk/retail/acatalog/
        I will get mine at a very nice discount!!
        I get it back on Thursday afternoon, then I am off on Friday afternoon to try to shoot some Dartford Warblers on Exmoor.
        If I am successful, I shall post something here.

        Roger

  • Jeff Cohen

    super day today ,probably the best since owning the lens ,i have finally sorted out my M/A adjust with my fave camera the canon 1D3 and todays session included a bee in flight at 600mm .the sharpness is superb ,simply love it

    • Manoj

      Dear Jeff,

      These are some of the best images captured using the new sigma lens that I have seen so far. Personally I am content with the resolving power of this lens and the valuable additions such as weather sealing, good build and USB dock customization.

      However, image contrast and color is not great with this lens and when compare to lenses such as Nikon 300mm f4 AF-S and 80-400mm G VR the images captured with this Sigma does not have that POP factor. One can argue that it is easy to tweak contrast and color in post, but doing so will introduce image noise and other unpleasant effects.

      These few images have pleasant out of focus areas and the same cannot be expected when shooting larger subjects such as larger mammals, where subject isolation is difficult with this lens due to smaller F number. These are the things that kept me from buying this otherwise amazing lens.

      Jeff I would like to hear from your experience regarding the areas that I have mentioned.
      1. Contrast
      2. Color
      3. Subject Isolation

      Cheers
      Manoj

      • Jeff Cohen

        dear manoj
        i can’t after a month with this lens figure our where these ASSUMPTIONS are coming from ,perhaps from the handfull of supposed pro photographers that tested the sample lenses and made there assumptions based on similar sized lenses that cost 5 or 6 times more .any way heres my take on it
        (1) contrast ),no problem whatsoever i have not had to tweet contrast levels in p/p at all .

        (2) colour) ,again no problems that i can envisage ,the only thing i have to really put towards this is i use two cameras a canon 1Dmk 3 which i love to use as with yesterdays photos ,but its showing its age .and a canon 70d which is a fairly recent sensor this does appear to give better overall colour and i suppose contrast as well . so it would appear this lens is a better performer on the more modern sensors to a degree .which i would think its been designed around .thats just my own view at this moment in time so its based on a feeling not fact .

        (3) subject isolation) wheres this one sprung from .used wide open the lens is still pin sharp as you close it down you increase the depth of field ,the bokah as far as i can see and subject isolation is superb .the photos i have posted on here are just a small section of what i have taken if you go to my flickrstream there are many many more photos taken with this lens .so again no problem with target separation at all or subject isolation at all

  • Nikos Delhanidis
  • Tom Franks

    I’m glad someone have had luck in getting this lens. I’m still waiting for mine through Sigma USA. I have found some gray market lens at Harvestbasket.com and Fumfie.com in Nikon and Canon mounts. I still want that 4 year USA warranty. My biggest compliant with Sigma they cannot tell me when will I get this lens.

    • Rogerdodge

      Hi
      I have the same frustration here in the UK.
      I sold my Sigma 500 4.5 to finance this 150-600 back in January.
      I have orders placed with a massive on-line retailer, and a small independent retailer.
      Both say they have been told “mid March”, which is – um – NOW!!
      Seeing those great shots from Jeff Cohen makes the wait even more irritating.
      Roger

      • Manoj

        Hi Rogerdodge,

        I wonder why you have sole your 500mm f4.5 prime to finance this 150-600 lens as I do not think that this 150-600mm will provide better image quality (sharpness, contrast and bokeh) than the 500mm f4.5 lens.

        Cheers
        Manoj

        • Rogerdodge

          Manoi

          You ask a very interesting question.

          It is, of course, a question I asked myself whilst considering my course of action.

          My primary photographic interest is wildlife. I take many photos here in the UK, and try to get away somewhere more or less exotic at least twice a year.

          This year it is Bulgaria in May for butterflies and birds, and, in December, Zambia for just about everything.

          On my last two trips to Africa, I left the 500mm at home, and relied on my Canon 100-400 instead. This worked fine, but I did often miss the other 100mm.

          The reason for leaving the 500mm at home was the weight/bulk factor – flying in light aircraft from camp to camp is a serious consideration.

          I WILL NOT put photo gear in the hold.

          I considered, for a while, getting the (then just rumoured) new Canon 100-400 and a 1.4x convertor, but, in December last year I got to actually handle the new Sigma 150-600 Sport. I was really impressed. It is so solidly built that it will stand up to the misuse I tend to put my gear through.

          Comparing the two lenses, the “vital statistics”
          for me are-

          Weight
          150-600 = 2860, 500 = 3150
          That 290g is pretty significant.

          Close Focus
          150-600 = 2.6m, 500 = 4m
          No extension tubes needed for small birds!!

          Dimensions
          150-600 = 121mm dia x 290mm long, 500 = 123mm dia x 350mm long
          That 60mm leaves significant space in my kit bag.

          The Image Stabilisation was the clincher.

          The lower weight than the 500, and IS make it hand-holdable. Something I could never do with the 500.

          Remember – this 150-600 replaces TWO lenses for me.

          Sure, if you look at test charts, and MTF figures, the 150-600 is a shade less good than the 500.

          However, I don’t shoot test targets.

          I shoot wildlife, and I think, in the real world, you would be hard pressed to tell the difference of two shots taken side by side, on the same body, and with the same settings with these two (or just about any two good lenses).

          I live in the real world where good technique with a good lens will yield as good a shot as average technique with a great lens.

          I rarely print larger than A2, and at these sizes, you just won’t be able to tell!!

          No one who has seen my photos has ever said
          “Shame you don’t have a Canon 500mm f4 prime – it would have been much sharper.”

          If I was shooting to go on billboards I would have a Canon 200-400 f4, or a 600mm f4 – and could probably afford them both.

          I also got a few hundred quid left over to finance a part of my Zambia trip.

          I will also be selling my (now redundant) 10-400 to finance Zambia.

          Now I will just travel with 3 lenses – 17-40, 100 macro, 150-600.

          As far as sharpness and bokeh and contrast are concerned, just look at Jeff Cohens shots, and if that isn’t good stuff I don’t know what is!

          So, to sum up

          1/ It is a sharp as I need

          2/ It replaces 2 lenses

          3/ I have money left over.

          Go figure.

          YMMV

          Roger

          • Rogerdodge

            UPDATE
            On Friday, I was flicking through EBay when I saw a 150-600 Sport for sale at a reasonable price (there were a few at daft prices – £300+ above RRP).
            I scrolled down to see the vendor was SRS Microsystems. I had dealt with these guys before, so I called them and they confirmed 5 in stock in Canon fit (apparently Nikon fit are even rarer).
            I promptly ordered one, and it arrives – TOMORROW!!!!
            (Tracked by Parcel Force)
            I feel like I felt when 8 years old on Christmas Eve.
            Roger

  • Nikos Delhanidis

    interesting check out. multipage post with numerous RL comparison images :

    http://www.nikonistas.com/digital/foro/index.php?showtopic=336021?&page=12

    ( http://www.flickr.com/photos/121219285@N07/ )

    where 150-600 S shows to be a very tiny better than 200-400+TC both wide open, while the untouchable 600 f/4 shows what sharp means in reality ….

    • Florent – SigmaRumors

      Thought I had already added that one to the review list, but it was not the case. Done now.

      • Nikos Delhanidis

        i think my eye caught some test shots on D90 as well, maybe i am wrong

  • Jeff Cohen

    the lens is still performing well ,now used to simply hand holding it on walkabout and its producing the goodies ,a couple of shots below of a local rare migrant bird a american laughing gull that has taken up residence at the mouth of the river mersey .this has got to be the best lens i have ever owned and that includes canon L lenses

  • Jeff Cohen

    two weeks with the beast my thoughts so far .i have now had two weeks with the lens and these are my thoughts so far using on canon 1d3 and 70d bodies ,i am not a pro just a normal member of the public and wildlife tog . the overall build quality is excellent ,i used it for four days hand held round nature reserves with no problems and got some superb shots .its super sharp wide open ,but you still have to apply good p/p skills with it enabling lens profiles in ps6 does seem to help it to . the only downside i can find so far and i think this applies to all 600mm lenses is limited d.o.f its extremely shallow and close subjects and will fool you .i have found stopping down helps with this immensely .it also takes a canon 1.4 tc with no problems on a f8 enabled body ,although registering f9 but still works fine . still on a learning curve with this lens but loving it .

  • Jeff Cohen

    dan when i have had problems with older sigma lenses in the past i have found there u.k service dept to be far superior and more helpful to the canon or nikon alternatives ,and also i might add signifigantly cheaper and faster

  • Dan

    Could people who have bought a sigma lens share their thinking and experience with service?, Canon and a suspect nikon has supported many of their L type lenses with spare parts for some 20 years. what should we expect from sigma? spending 2000eur on something that is classified as professional ie the 150-600mm warrents that sigma will be there and suppot you lens for a fair amount of time. anybody seen those type if claims?

  • Jeff Cohen

    and a couple more shots again hand held very pleased with the performance to date

    • Florent – SigmaRumors

      Thanks Jeff.

      • gus flores

        SHARP,SHARP! Thanks for sharing. LOVE THIS SIGMA OR BIGMA, Waiting for Nikon mount!!

  • Jeff Cohen

    just had a few days away testing the lens with a mix of my canon 1d3 and 70d t.b.h level pegging quality wise which has surprised me .used it hand held on walkabout for 4 days and never felt the need for a tripod or monopod .this lens does what it says on the box and performs superbly ,although you can still get sharp shots wide open best results are obtained at f7.1 or f8 ,birds in flight no problem either neither was a running fox with a burst of 15 shots all perfectly in focus .all my other lenses will shortly be up for sale this covers all the options .heres a few of a marsh harrier for perusal best shots i have ever got of this species

    • gus flores

      Excellent Shots, WooHoo!!! LOVE THE BIGMA!

  • positive

    Comparison with Nikkor 600 f4 and 200-400+TC
    http://www.nikonistas.com/digital/foro/index.php?showtopic=336021&page=12
    In Spanish, sorry

  • Nikos Delhanidis

    I would very much like to see a comparison with the Nikkor 200-400+TC-14E II/III …..

  • Sanjay

    I am very impressed with the OS even at 600mm hand-held. I took these two shots hand-held at 1/15s @ 600mm and I must say the OS works beautifully. I do not have the most steady hands and yet these pictures have come out nice.

    Sanjay

    • gus flores

      Sharp Enough for me! Love this Sigma lens. By March, I’ll have this lens.

  • Jeff Cohen

    another shot with the new lens ,this is in poor light as well can’t wait for things to pick up

    • gus flores

      Well done,=Great Capture! Thanks for Sharing. Waiting from CrutchField on March.

  • Jeff Cohen

    more than happy with mine ,took it for its first walk today and its a delight to use even with the poor light we are suffering in the u.k

  • Marc Read

    I got my 150-600 Last week after trading in my Sigma 500mm Prime. I’m really happy with it so far. You can see some examples on my Flickr : flickr.com/photos/readphotography/

    • gus flores

      Great Shot! Very Sharp,still waiting from CrutchField.

    • plainsman

      Nice capture.

      PS which is the sharpest – the zoom or the prime @500?

      • Marc Read

        There was very little in it but the prime was marginally sharper, but I never expected it to beat it. It’s so sharp for a zoom it’s unreal. I’m using the zoom so much more that I thought I would. I guess I just got used to moving around to re-frame a shot but now I can just zoom in or out.

        I’ve uploaded some more shots to my Flickr flickr.com/readphotography .

        • gus flores

          Very Nice Collection of birds! And Very Sharp Images of birds. Thanks for Sharing. Waiting for Nikon Mount.

  • Marc Read

    I got my 150-600 Last week after trading in my Sigma 500mm Prime. I’m really happy with it so far. You can see some examples on my Flickr : flickr.com/photos/readphotography/

    • manoj

      Hi,

      Can you please tell us what you have found in terms of image quality difference between this 150-600mm sport and your Sigma 500mm f4.5 prime lens.

  • Jeff Cohen

    just got the 150-600 sport and very impressed so far .also got the usb dock at same time and nice and easy to update to .

  • Just Me

    Ephotozine also just posted their review of the 100-400 II. For those somewhat obsessed with comparing the different lens options in this range, such as myself, they give the 100-400 II 5 stars/editor choice vs 4.5 stars/highly recommended for the 150-600S…but when I look at the numbers, I am not sure why? I think the numbers look better for the Sigma. I have little doubt the 100-400 II is a great lens. Just that the 150-600S looks a bit better optically.

    • Florent – SigmaRumors

      Thanks for the info.

  • Manoj

    Lenscore.org (which in my opinion is much better and accurate than DXOmark) published their rating and according to them this new Sigma is the best ultra telephoto zoom lens and it beats the rival (tamron 150-600mm) by a long margin. But I was somewhat underwhelmed by the fact that, this sigma (which i want to buy) is easily beaten by the 15 year old (but excellent) Nikon AF-S 300mm f4 prime lens (costing $ 1,300) by a huge margin. Hence, I am now in dilemma whether to buy this Sigma 150-600mm lens or wait for new Nikon AF-S 300mm f4 PF VR + TC 1.4 (3). Choices, Choices.

    http://www.lenscore.org/

    • Just Me

      Interesting. I’ve never seen such a discrepancy between prime lenses and zooms. I tend to focus on Canon equipment, as that is what I shoot. Only the 200-400L is up with the prime lenses.
      In reading their methodology, they wanted to make sure that they were measuring all lenses on the same camera body and that any limitation they measured was due to the lens, not the sensor. So they custom built a 200 MP “Camera” that they run their tests on.
      So, it could be that the very best prime lenses are out resolving the current FF camera bodies while the very best zoom lenses are more in line with what current sensors can resolve. Thus, the added benefit of the best primes is not recognizable with current camera sensors.
      So, what I am getting at is that you may not seen a difference with your AF-S 300 f/4 until you are shooting a 200 MP camera body.
      I am basing this my looking at various “high end” Canon zoom lenses like the 70-200 II, 70-300L, etc. These are great zoom lenses. Lenscore has them well below the prime lenses, but they are right in there with the 150-600S.

  • Just Me

    Review is up at ephotozine….Much better than the Tamron at 150 mm and 300 mm. But just a bit better at 600 mm.

    http://www.ephotozine.com/article/sigma-150-600mm-f-5-6-3-dg-os-hsm-sports-lens-review-26786

  • just me

    Of course, these could slide or otherwise be erroneous, but I just noticed that lensrentals has the 150-600S listed as available on January 14th and 15th for Nikon and Canon, respectively.
    Hopefully they have good information as to when the next batch of lenses is being released.

  • Hey all.. Just a note to say I updated my review (listed above) with information on using the Canon 2x extender (teleconverter) with this lens http://www.davidromaphotography.com/blog/2014/12/sigma-150-600mm-f5-6-3-dg-os-hsm-sport—australian-hands-on-review-with-sample-shots

    • just me

      Thanks David.
      Interesting results and some great pictures. Thanks for taking the time.
      As you noted, I think the use of the 2x III extender (which I already own) will be very infrequent. I have been intended to take a few images of the moon, for example. But the lack of AF and getting deep into apertures that will require significant amounts of light and will start of have issues with diffraction.
      I still think it is interesting that the 2x III did help the optics other than “wide open”. It gives me more hope that the 1.4x TC (which I do not yet own) will give me both AF and some better optics. I find myself cropping even when shooting at 600 mm. So, while I will likely take most of my shots at f/7.1-f/9 at 600 mm. I may want f/10-f/11 and the 1.4x TC as an option.
      Thanks again.

  • Just Me (aka Kayaker72)

    Any Canon shooters tried the 150-600S with a 1.4xTC (either canon or Sigma)? I am wondering about the IQ hit and how well it AF’d. I shoot the 5DIII.

  • manoj

    Almost every photographer who gets to use this lens has compared this lens to the Tamron 150-600mm lens, which is obvious given the fact that, Tamron is the closest equivalent of this lens.

    However, there are many photographers (specially Nikon) who use Nikon AF-S 300mm F4 Lens. So far no review or test report has compared the image quality of this Sigma sports to the venerable Nikon (or Canon) 300mm f4 (or Canon 400mm f5.6 L).

    I currently use Nikon 300mm F4 and waiting to a proper comparison to justify the upgrade to the Sigma (mainly due to longer reach). But if the Sigma cannot match the image quality (sharpness, color and contrast) of the prime at 300mm or 420mm (with 1.4 TC),

    I may keep the prime until a longer (and affordable) prime lens (such as 500mm f5.6) released by either Nikon (highly unlikely), Tamron or Sigma.

    Also I wonder how the image quality of this sports lens compares to the much older Sigma 500mm f4.5 EX DG HSM prime lens, as the used copies of this lens for sale for around $ 2000-3000, not much more than Sigma 150-600mm sports lens.

    Yes i know that 150-600mm sports has many advantages (OS, Weather Sealing, Zoom range, newer coating, USB dock customizations, etc.) over the prime lens. Reviews for Sigma 500mm f4.5 EX DG HSM mainly mention that it is slightly soft wide open at f4.5 and very good to excellent from f5.6 – f8 range.

    If someone has experience with any of the above lenses, your opinions will be highly valuable to take decision,

    1. whether to update to Sigma 150-600mm sports

    2. whether to update to a used Sigma 500mm f4.5 ex dg HSM (for $ 2,300)

    3. whether to keep the Nikon 300mm f4 and look for future releases.

    My main concern is image quality and i do not much care about the OS feature as i mostly use my manfrotto tripod.

    Your opinions are much welcome.

    • Nikos Delhanidis

      My guess and is only a guess although based on general experience, (and i haven’t used any of the mentioned lenses) : it seems that the image quality is quite more important to you than reach, and i don’t think that any zoom, no matter how good it is could probably compare with a prime : Sigma 150-600 S probably might not be equal @ 300 to your 300, although maybe close (maybe) and for sure not close @ 600. @ 400 Might be closer though to your 420 (1.4 TC) combo.

      If i were you as you describe your priorities and telephoto usage, i’d maybe go for the 500 4.5.

      There’s also going to be a new 300 f/4 next year, combined with the TC-14E III maybe might satisfy you more.

      Waiting for 400 or 500 5.6 prime from Nikon or third party? I don’t believe we will ever see such a day.

      Theres an interesting review on the links above of someone in Dpreview forums posting a comparison between the Sigma and Nikon 300 2.8 + TC-20E III.

  • manoj
  • just me

    Camera labs review is up:
    http://cameralabs.com/reviews/Sigma_150-600mm_f5-6-3_DG_OS_HSM_Sport/

    Very favorable. I have had my copy for ~2 weeks. I am impressed. The weight is a bit much. I can see shooting it from support. It is hand holdable when needed, but it may not be that enjoyable if done for very long.

    • manoj

      Hi,

      One point that Cameralabs reviewer mentioned is that, the difficulty to isolate your subject from the background in a soft and creamy manner, due to f5-6.3 range. This is very significant for me. What can you add regarding this aspect based on your 2 weeks of experience with this lens.

      • just me

        Hi Manoj,
        I understand where Cameralabs was coming from, but it didn’t phase me. I’ve been mostly shooting small birds to test sharpness and I’ve even needed to stop down at times to have everything in focus. There is good bokeh at 600 mm. But, this isn’t a 600 f/4. One of those physical limitations issues.
        Honestly, what caught my attention wasn’t their comment about bokeh, but in their review was the mention of lower contrast at 600 mm. I am overall pleased with the IQ, But something had been feeling missing to me, and I think that may be it. The lens is sharp, but loses a bit of contrast at 600 mm. I prefer natural contrast rather than adding it in post. But I think Cameralabs says it well, it is just a bit lower. The IQ is still very good if not excellent. The real issue with this lens is the size and weight.

        • Manoj

          Thank you for your prompt reply.

          Glad to hear that, subject isolation and bokeh is good with the lens. One thing that I have noticed in Super tele lenses of Sigma (500mm f4.5) is that lack of micro contrast in images. Just like you, i do not prefer to add contrast in post. I think the fact that differentiate this lens from the super tele lenses from Nikon and Canon is the lack of contrast and less than stellar colors. One might argue that, we can boost these on post. But i think there is a difference. For example my Nikon 300mm f4 prime is very contrasty and colors are very beautiful. I am having a hard time in deciding weather i should upgrade to the Sigma lens or not. What do you think about this ?

          • Just Me (aka Kayaker72)

            Manoj…sorry for the delay on this, I’ve been traveling. I shoot a Canon 5DIII. I pre-ordered the 150-600S before the 100-400 II was announced. As the 100-400 II is smaller, lighter, has 4 stops IS, etc, there are some distinct advantages. But, the thing that is swaying me to keeping the 150-600S is 600 mm. I am mostly shooting at 600 mm f/6.3-f/9 and using all of my AF points. I suspect the 100-400 II + 1.4xTC would give me good IQ at 560 mm f/10-f/11 (based on the MTF chart) and only let me shoot with the center point AF.
            While that is me, I am saying if you want 600 mm, I suspect it is tough to beat the 150-600S for the price. Getting to use the f/6.3-f/9 range is very significant. But, if your 300 f/4 plus 2xTC is sharp with good contrast plus you can use all your AF points, then I can see that working and probably wouldn’t make the change.
            The big thing with 600 mm is, of course, the reach. But you can crop. What I am finding is the other big thing about 600 mm is the AF. Each AF point is covering more of the frame than at 400 mm and is giving me better AF because of that in comparison to my current 100-400 Mk I.

  • Leah Deckard Hallett

    I posted sample images, processed from raw in DPP and the Jpg’s straight out of the 7D II, wide-open at 600mm here:

    The first shot I posted is hand-held of the moon. The further down the thread are the bird photos wide-open.

    http://www.dpreview.com/forums/thread/3760674#forum-post-54870871

  • Robert Harmse

    Here are some images from my recent trip to the Kruger National Park.

  • zhenb

    I received the lens a few days ago. Here are some images with crops and my first impressions (sorry they are not in English): http://ebushkov.blogspot.com/2014/12/150-600mm-f5-63-dg-os-hsm-sport.html

  • Manoj
  • SKM
    • Nikos Delhanidis

      why VF focus is so hugely off comparing to LV focus?

      • SKM

        Thank you Nick for your kind reply. Generally I found Live View is sharper than VF in most cases – especially with TC. TC-2001 will not AF in ViewFinder – But AF very well in LiveView.

        • SKM

          I am not sure I can strictly compare Tamron($1K) vs. Sigma ($2K)– it is like Chevy vs. Cadillac:)(None of these lenses (Sigma brand new & Tamron ~ 6 month old)/TC’s (brand new) are manually calibrated – straight out of the box. Without TC, tested ~18’(foot) and with TC tested ~24’ distance). OS/VC was in OFF mode

          Here are some of my preliminary non-scientific & un-educated perceptions:

          Both lenses are excellent for the PRICE without TC’s (Sigma seems slightly sharper @600MM) – ViewFinder is slightly soft on both lenses comparing with the Live View.

          Both TC’s Autofocus fine on LiveView – but TC-1401 autofocus seems lousy Sigma @800MM on ViewFinder. TC-2001 will not autofocus (ViewFinder) Sigma @1200MM. Personally I am disappointed with the ViewFinder autofocus performance @800MM. Hope I will be able to fix it in TC-1401 with the USB Dock.

          I was able to hand hold Sigma couple of hours, but concerned about it shooting it longer especially at Airshows – vs. with Tamron, I was able to shoot it whole day in all angles without any issues (I am 6’ & well built to handleJ).

          All the images below are 100% CROP

          I will let you guys interpret it the way you wanted it – but please be nice to the messenger

  • Kamlesh Pillai

    Sigma 150-600 Sports version flickr pool:
    https://www.flickr.com/groups/2793081@N22/

    • Manoj

      Hi, Kamlesh

      I saw your photographs captured with sigma 150-600mm sports and impressed with the sharpness. However. I am not impressed with the subject isolation capability of this lens (probably due to f6.3). Do you think it is possible to fully isolate larger subject (people, large mammals and large birds) with this lens with super creamy bokeh. This is the main thing that still keeps me undecided on this lens.

  • manoj
  • manoj
  • Nikos Delhanidis

    If someone spot any use with D7100. And / Or motorsports – aviation. Let know 🙂

  • Manoj

    All reviewers of this lens thus far acknowledged that this lens is reasonably sharp (even wide open) and has solid build quality. But they have mostly ignored some key image quality aspects of this lens as below mentioned.

    1. How much this lens can isolate your subject (wildlife and other) from the background (in comparison to a pro level prime lenses like 400/2.8 or 500/4) given that, at longer focal length, the apature is 6.3. This is specially significant to those who do bird photography. Does you this lens is capable of pro quality results specially in a sunny day.

    2. How much contrasty is the images directly from RAW files.

    • Florent – SigmaRumors

      Two reviewers say that the images come out not very contrasty.
      Pop Photo: I found the images to be a little flat in terms of contrast, but that’s
      honestly how I prefer them, so I can make my adjustments in post.

      I can’t find back the other.

      • manoj

        Thank you florent for pointing out that. I prefer slightly punchi colors with some micro contrast in my images and along with the ability to fully blur the background in a soft and creamy manner, makes us drool over the images produced by pro quality prime lenses. I really want this lens to be outstanding specially in the image quality point of view and I am yet to be fully convinced. Hopefully future reviews and samples images will tell us all we love to know.

    • Dirk Beckers

      1. Isolate perfectly… at least for my bird photography sufficient!

      2. RAW files need “always” to be corrected so what’s the point?

      here are my samples (more soon…): http://www.dirkbeckers.be/tag/sigma-150-600mm-f5-6-3-dg-os-hsm-s/

  • Nikos Delhanidis

    Q1: any info maybe on chances the Sports version is going to be made for Sony A-mount?
    Q2: any newer info maybe about the Contemporary version sharpness and AF comparing to S?

    • Florent – SigmaRumors

      Hi Nikos.
      Q1: Don’t count on it, Sigma said it was not planned.
      Q2: For sharpness, the MTF charts will give the first hints, and we’re waiting for Sigma to release them. As for AF, no one has had the Contemporary version in hand, let alone for testing and comparing it to the S.

  • dave

    Does anybody know if the Sigma 150-600mm f/5-6.3 Sports is compatibile with the Canon 7D MK2

  • Nikos Delhanidis
  • Rohan Wick

    We have not seen any new sample images or reviews uploaded to this site for a few days. Would like to see more BIF images

    • Florent – SigmaRumors

      I would like too, but there’s nothing new besides low-res sample images and a couple of hands-on impressions here and there.

  • Nikos Delhanidis

    Any feedback on breathing at long distances and 600mm …..

  • Nikos Delhanidis

    I would very much like to be lucky to see a comparison @ 600 mm with the Nikon 200-400 + 1.4 TC at 60-150m distances ….

  • Nikos Delhanidis
    • Florent – SigmaRumors

      I finally added that post.

      • Nikos Delhanidis

        apologies for the repetition, failed to realize EarlFargis post was about the same link

        • Florent – SigmaRumors

          No problem!

  • EarlFargis

    DPReview has a mini review of the Sigma 150-600mm Sport posted in the forums. The twist here is the tester is comparing it to his Nikkor 300mm f/2.8 with a 2x teleconverter. Unfortunately, his only sample photo is of a cat and ISO 22,800 which isn’t going to tell me much.

    More helpful is a commenter who did a similar test comparing his Nikkor 300mm f/2.8 with and without a 2x teleconverter in a controlled setting shooting a fabric curtain. He’s noticed significant focus breathing with the Sigma 150-600mm Sport lens. Sharpness-wise, the Sigma does well but can’t obviously compete at 300mm with a $6,000 prime. With a 2.x teleconverter he gives the edge to the Nikkor 300mm but I’m not so sure myself.

    In any case, demonstrates Sigma has done a pretty good job given the hand-holdability of these 2 set-ups is about the same. That said, obviously, a Nikkor 600mm f/4 will beat the Sigma… duh… but that’s comparing a roughly $10k lens to a $2k one. Overall, Sigma has done a very credible job.

    http://www.dpreview.com/forums/thread/3747411#forum-post-54669115

    • Nikos Delhanidis

      commenter i think is the OP complimenting his initial post with later actual comparison shots between the two setups

  • Manoj

    Since Tamron introduced thier 150-600mm lens, I thought that was the answer for my wildlife photography.

    But the accepted softness at 600mm turned me off and waited months for the answer from Sigma, knowing that, they have upped thier game with Global Vision lenses.

    I visited this site almost everyday for the last year to catch any rumours of the Sigma’s answer to enthusiast wildlife/nature photography community.

    Initially i was a bit underwhelmed of the rumour that, Sigma going to release a 300-600mm f4 lens (which could have cost about $ 6000 – 10,000, which is out of most photographers affordable limit and weight limit)

    But I was over the moon with the announcement of the Sports 150-600mm lens (didn’t cared much for contemporary version) and since the announcement I have been perusing the web for any sample images and initial impressions to a point, where it becomes a sort of obsession.

    After seeing some of the sample images taken with this lens (especially at GEAR FOR IMAGE site), I was pleasantly satisfied with the image quality of this lens.

    But, I want to know few things prior to purchasing this lens (if it is available to purchase, given the short supply).

    1). My current lens is Nikon 300mm f4 prime, Do anyone thinks that, this sigma will be able to achieve the image quality of this prime lens wide open (or one stop down)

    2). How this lens going to compare with Sigma 500mm f4.5 DG lens, which is available (in mint condition for $ 2,000 at some seller). Given that, new Sigma sports lens is the same price, what you guys think will offer the better images (Sigma 500mm is $ 5000 new) – if either is using on a tripod.

    Your Opinions and experience with any of the above lenses will be highly appreciated.

    • Rohan Wick

      I am in the same boat as yours, waiting to replace my Nikon 55-300 VR for BIF and wildlife photography (it’s a struggle for BIF with this) . As we cannot afford $ 5000 + primes, also only affordable prime 300/F4 does not have VR, Simga could be the obvious choice. Samples we have seen are quite encouraging, Any comments about AF ?

      • Florent – SigmaRumors

        From Imaging Resource:

        Autofocus performance also seemed quite good and very quiet. Single-shot
        and continuous servo AF performed very well on this lens when paired to
        the Canon 1D X thanks to Sigma’s Hyper Sonic Motor AF system. I was
        able to acquire focus very quickly and maintain focus even on far away
        and fast-moving subjects.

        • Rohan Wick

          Thank you immensely for feedback, we are highly impressed with Sigma Rumors site, This is the best site among photography rumor sites with superb presentation, very frequent updates etc. We were looking forward for sample images since the Photokina, it was great these images were linked to us in no time by Sigma Rumors which is really helpful

          • Florent – SigmaRumors

            Many thanks!

    • EarlFargis

      I have the Nikkor 300mm f/4. You’re not going to match the sharpness at 300mm with the Sigma. But obviously we’ll be shooting the 150-600mm mostly at 600mm. I don’t have the Nikon 2x teleconverter (heard it was soft) but I do have the 1.7x (and 1.4x). If you stop down a bit you can get a pretty sharp image with this combination. Still, I have a pre-order in because with the new Sigma 1.4x teleconverter and the 150-600mm Sport you’re really stretching out the reach further than any solution with the Nikkor 300mm f/4 and, unfortunately, there’s no affordable Nikkor 400mm option I can consider.

      Here’s a sample with the 1.7x at f/10 11/1000th.

      https://farm4.staticflickr.com/3842/15214142727_f8bd79e0c0_o.jpg

      • Nikos Delhanidis

        Another one getting the 150-600 with the new 1.4 TC? Am i missing something here? AF with f/9? Image quality isn’t getting a hit with a TC on such a zoom (no matter how good it relatively is, its not 120-300 or 200-400) especially for people who got used to the IQ of Nikon 300 f/4 and f/2.8? …..

  • CHRIS

    Thoughts on the 150- 600 HSM sport

    You have to admire Sigma here, and early signs are pretty
    good.

    To manufacture a 150 – 600mm (ish) zoom lens, which produces a good image (at
    the long end) for reasonable money, is a tall order.

    Lenses are available from Canon (and Nikon) but you are
    talking the cost of a small car.(200-400mm 1.4 TC inbuilt or external)

    I previously had one of the Sigma 150 500mm HSM DG lenses but at the long end it was pretty poor (usable at f11 just poor AF).

    I then brought a Canon 100 400 USM L better but lacked
    that sharp detail at the long end (good at f11 ).

    I then in desperation I brought the 70 300 USM L and the 400mm USM L 5.6 prime combination. (both super AF) I am really impressed with the results that I can get, I can now use both lenses wide open an never worry about Sharpness, as it’s always very good. I have a 7d on both lenses the prime lives on a tripod and the zoom is handheld and it works well together.
    Fixed prime can be bit limiting though, but works very well with a 1.4 TC no auto focus.

    With the Sigma I now have a potentially better option, and if this lens is as good as some of the images shown so far it will be on a lot of shopping lists, including my own.

    I would have liked the Canon 200-400 incl 1.4 TC . Okay the Canon will outgun the Sigma but how much better will it be and its five times the price.

    As for the extra weigh good long lenses are always heavy (more elements = better IQ).

    There does seems to be a current fashionable move toward small light weight CSC type cameras. Any thing that is big and heavy gets an unfair press. However if you cast yourself back ten to fifteen years ago all good quality images where taken with generally heavy lenses and cameras.
    (medium format etc) no one complained then.

    Now photography equipment has become fashion derived,
    big stuff has gone out of vogue, its the other way round with mobile phones ten years ago pocket size was in now it slim house brick size.

    Which kinda sums it all up really.

    Many thanks Sigma for trying to produce a good 600mm lens at an affordable price point.

    • Chris

      I left the original post above two months ago with no reply.

      There is lots of discussion about lack of contrasts, weight, slow aperture, etc etc.
      But some of you seem to be missing the point, This lens is a real game changer for the wildlife community
      at last a manufacture has produced a 600mm lens that will produce sharp images for people on a modest income and I do believe almost and individual can achieve impressive results without taking out a second
      mortgage. Perhaps it has no kudos because it does not have Canon or Nikon on the outside.
      Does anyone out there believe that this lens will improve the standard of wildlife photography worldwide.

      • gusflores

        Definitely my shooting will improve with the 150-600mm. I’ll be shooting mostly at 600mm and no problem with the weight. Waiting for Nikon mount to be available.

  • belotto

    There is a new set of pics on the Sigma Benelux site. Not full size, though.
    http://www.sigmabenelux.com/nl/news/sample-beelden-sigma-150-600mm-f5-63-dg-os-hsm-i-sports

  • animalsbybarry

    Canon just announce the CN20X50
    This is a cinema quality lens of superb quality.
    The front elemend is over 5″ and the weight is about 14lb
    Focal length is 50-1000mm and an internal built in 1.5x teleconverter makes it 75-1500mm
    F# and T# vary by focal range from f5 up to 500mm to about f14 at 1500mm.
    Price is about $79000.

    • gusflores

      Definitely my shooting will improve with the 150-600mm. I will be shooting mostly at 600mm. No problem with the weight. And waiting for Nikon mount to be available. Thanks for sharing your thoughts & impressions

  • animalsbybarry

    Not surprisingly the quality of the sport lens seems to far exced the quality of the Tamron….and I would expect future review to make similar conclusions.
    The main questio is how the contemporary version compares to the other two.
    To that conclusion I still await contemporary version mtf charts and of course 3 way comparison reviews.

    • EarlFargis

      Really? I’m not convinced the Sigma 150-600mm “sport lens seems to far exceed [sic] the quality of the Tamron” unless you’re merely referring to build quality. IQ-wise, I need to see DxO scores. I definitely do not think DxO’s synthetic benchmarks are the end-all of picking a lens but it’s the best way, IMHO, to see if indeed there are significant IQ improvements in the Sigma S.

      The Mworkz.net translation is awkward but if you read the comments the reviewer gives us a few hints by direct comparison:

      “At the moment and the next days I’m on the road but have a look on my Tamron Hands-on. The Tamron Has slightly more aberrations, Especially the magenta ones. And theres a bit more vignetting. The Sigma Has more density in its images and a smoother bokeh at 600mm.”

      “Differences in Sharpness: nearly no ones when you finish compare the images optically. But the Tamron looses Sharpness Earlier with a smaller aperture. Over all the siggy shows slightly better results when you finish measure it by software, but there are just a few more lines in resolution. You can only see it at small Apertures at 600mm when you finish know what you are looking for. Well or by measuring it in a laboratory.”

      There’s the issue of the new matched Sigma teleconverters too but when you read his impressions of what a massive, unwieldy beast the Sigma 150-600mm is I’m not so sure it’s worth it. Bottom line: jury’s still out for me.

      • animalsbybarry

        The description abot size an unwieldiness are cleary by a reviewer unused to this type of lens…it is only 2 lb heavier than tamton
        11″ closed and described as 3 ft long and 4ft long in two differend sentences..
        He also describes being embarassed by the size and not wanting to be noticed…so the size descriptions do not concern me.
        From what I have seen so far I believe that the center image portion at 600mm is far better than the tammy and that this lens will perfor better with the tc tha…well there is actually nothing to compare it too.
        Of course like you I desperately want to know how the contemporary version will perfor, as well as what new cameras Canikon are going to release that I would use this lens with.
        P.S.
        I just found out my new pond has Wood Duck , Bluebird, Spotted Salamander, pickeral and Wood Frogs, and occasionlly Otter.

        • EarlFargis

          I just returned from a trip that included a Costa Rican rain forest. Would you be able to identify this bird? I have no idea what it is (reduced to <2 mb for Disqus upload).
          Yeah, the thing I find interesting with the review is, best I can figure by the fuzzy translation, is he didn't just eyeball the images and form an impression but ran images through software and didn't get much different numbers. Of course, he won't (can't?) post the numbers for us to evaluate for ourselves.

          Weight is a huge (no pun intended) issue for me because I don't like (hate, actually) using tripods and monopods. I don't any harness systems to carry lenses and have a strong preference against wearing all that junk. So walking around for 2-3 hours with an extra 2 pounds in my hands is a big deal. Especially since my APS-C Sony is collecting dust and I’m using a FF Nikon. Using the Nikon for up to 11 hours at a time dangling around my neck was no problem (typically with a Tamron 24-70mm f/2.8). I wandered around with a backpack with 3-4 lenses and sometimes the body for 3-4 hours at a time. I probably weights 20-25 pounds. However, my Nikon 300mm with a 1.7x teleconverter attached barely fits into it so if I take anything longer with me, at best, I find some way to strap a case to the backpack. Worse… well, you get the picture.

          With my Tamron 200-500mm on my Sony a65 I can carry it around for 2-3 hours before it starts to get uncomfortable and I’ve had enough. I’m not sure I’d last with the Sigma S going down one of my favorite trails.

          Yeah, I don’t know what I’m going to do. I’m sure I’ll chatter about it for a long time then some spur of the moment will fall upon me and I’ll just jump on something. Pretty much what happened with my switch to Nikon. Had a once in a lifetime trip coming up and decided I didn’t want to wait until the 1st half of 2015 to see if Sony gets off the stick on a-mount.

          • animalsbybarry

            Looks immature…possibly an immature Double Tooth Kite but not totally sure.

          • animalsbybarry

            Yes…juvenile Double Toothed Kite, transitioning to adult plumage.

          • EarlFargis

            Thanks. I saw your background on your website and figured you’d have an good idea. I’ll do some additional research but you gave me a place to start.

          • animalsbybarry

            I didnt know but I knew how to find out.

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