Thursday, January 31, 2008

New Sigma lenses announced at PMA 2008 (lots and lots!)

Sigma has lots of candy for fans of 3rd party lenses as they launch a wave of new lenses. Let's try to sort through them! Complete press releases at SigmaPhoto.com - Sigma itself. Nikonians summarize the new releases from a Nikon perspective.

Think the waves of superzoom digital cameras are not having an effect on lens manufacturers? Think again as you peruse the list of new lenses below!

Quick Summary
Sigma has "pinged" their giant monsterous 200-500 f2.8 lens for fun and games. Will cost somewhere between a Honda Civic and a Honda Accord.

Then teased users of Minolta, Pentax and 4/3rds mounts with new f2.8 lenses, two for the first two mounts, and one for Four Thirds. Also gave 4/3rds users their version of the 10-20 EX DC HSM lens.

Appeased the masses with an 18-125 DC lens for all but the 4/3rds mount, and offered two APO DG HSM OS lenses for the zoomers.

And appeased the Nikon trio of DSLRs that expect lenses to have focus motors with two refreshes of the 70-300 lens (APO, and not APO).

Despite all these lenses, there were no new primes.

Minolta and especially Pentax lens owners will feel less left out by Sigma, as they made most of their new lenses available for those two mounts as well.


Sigma 200-500mm f/2.8 EX DG (Canon, Nikon, Sigma)

  • This is not a typo, this is a GIANT LENS!
  • An included attachment allows you to use this as a 400-1000mm f5.6 lens.
  • When used on a DX (1.5X) DSLR, you get the 35mm equivalent of 300-750mm with the lens alone, and 600-1500mm when using the attachment.
  • Weights 15.7 kgs (about 550 ounces,l which is around 34-35 lbs; calculations done off the top of my head while multi-tasking and blogging, so don't use the numbers to write up contracts)
  • Uses dedicated Li-ion battery BP-21 for its own power purposes
  • More at dpreview, Sigma, Crunch Gear (giant pictures), dpnow


    Sigma APO 150-500mm F5-6.3 DG OS HSM (Canon, Nikon, Pentax, Sony, Sigma)
  • 35mm equivalent when used on a 1.5X (DX) DSLR: Approximately 225-750mm.
  • No price yet
  • Weight 1.9 kg or 67.4oz
  • offers Optical Stabilization (OS) - Sigma's term for image stabilization
  • Of interest and curiosity what happens with DSLRs that also have sensor-shift image stabilization - will anyone try to make those two systems work together?
  • More at Sigma, dpnow, dpreview


    Sigma APO 120-400mm F4.5-5.6 DG OS HSM (Canon, Nikon, Pentax, Sony, Sigma)
  • The zoom parade continues with this lovely that when used on DX (1.5X FOV) DSLRs has the 35mm equivalency of 180-600mm.
  • Weighs 1.75 kg or 61.7 oz
  • More on this from Shiguma, dpnow


    Sigma 18-125mm F3.8-5.6 DC OS HSM (Canon, Nikon, Pentax, Sony, Sigma)
  • OS function not available on Sony and Pentax (from Sigma)
  • 35mm equivalency when used on a 1.5X FoV DSLR: 28-200mm give or take
  • Also, if the camera body does not support HSM motor, AF will not work. (from Sigma)
  • Minimum focusing distance of 35cm/13.8 inches and maximum magnification of 1:3.8, making it usable for close-up photography (it doesn't have a MACRO designation)
  • Weight not listed, but this is a compact lens (88.5mm length, 75mm diameter)
  • More on this at Let's Go D, dpnow, dpreview, and Sigma


    Sigma APO 50-150mm F2.8 II EX DC HSM (Pentax and Sony)
  • When used on a 1.5X DSLR, this has the 35mm equivalent of 75-225mm or so
  • From Sigma: If the camera body does not support HSM motor, AF will not work
  • Weight has not been determined (what?)
  • 140mm long and 76.5mm diameter
  • More on this from Sigma, dpreview.
  • This lens is already available for Canon at Amazon for $680
  • The DG version (not DC) is "available" for Canon, Nikon and Sigma mounts, but Amazon lists it for $820 and a 1 to 4 months wait.


    Sigma 10-20mm f4-5.6 EX DC HSM (Four Thirds)
  • 35mm equivalent: 20-40mm when used on a 4/3rds DSLR (eg Olympus E3, Panasonic L1, Olympus E410)
  • No prices were announced
  • For comparison purposes, the version of the 10-20mm f4-5.6 EX DC HSM for Canon and Nikon costs around $460
  • More at dpnow, Sigma, dpreview


    Sigma 70-200mm f2.8 II EX DG MACRO HSM (Pentax, Sony, Four Thirds)
  • 35mm equivalency on 1.5X DSLRs: around 105-300mm
  • 35mm equivalent on 4/3rds DSLRs: around 140-400mm
  • The 4/3rds version is physically longer by half a centimeter according to the Sigma site specs.
  • No prices were announced
  • For comparison purposes, the older version of the Sigma 70-200mm f/2.8 EX DG APO HSM for the Canon mount goes for about $830.
  • More at dpnow, dpreview, Sigma (4/3rds) and Sigma (Sony/Pentax)


    Sigma APO and non-APO 70-300mm F4-5.6 DG MACRO (Nikon)
  • From Sigma itself, an APO and a non-APO version. We blog, you decide!
  • The APO version is 5 grams heavier
  • Weigh around 20oz each (about 1/2 kg)
  • Have built-in motor to appease the Nikon D40 and D40x which are allergic to lenses without a focus motor
  • Oh Nikon, look at the mess you have created!
  • More at dpreview


    Sigma Speak
  • DC: lenses designed to work with DSLRs using sensors smaller than 35mm full frame, typically ranging from 1.5x FOV (Nikon, Sony, Pentax, Fuji), to 1.6x (Canon), to 1.7x (Shiguma), to 2x (4/3rds party).
  • OS: optical stabilization, Sigma's version of image stabilization
  • HSM: Hypersonic Motor, Sigma's answer to the fast, silent and smooth focusing technologies everyone is clamoring for
  • EX: You pay more
  • APO: You pay more
  • DG: Not a reference to the Wizard of Oz (we think), but rather indicating a 35mm full frame lens that has been optimized to work with digital DSLRs
  • Shiguma: Computer-translated name for Sigma when going from Japanese to English

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