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First Sigma 50-500mm 'Bigma' shots: male Lion!

Discussion in 'Photography Forums' started by condyk, Apr 26, 2005.

  1. condyk

    condyk
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    OK, my 50-500mm Bigma and 70-200mm F2.8 finally arrived today, so after three big fat blokes helped me carry them both through the door (yes, they are quite substantial!) I unpacked them half expecting to see quite a bit of wear and tear. But no, both are absolutely MINT, even better than the seller had described them and boxed with tripod rings, hoods, caps, manual, the lot. King sized bargains :clap:

    Things are looking good already and I look out the window and even the weather is improving. MAYBE if I'm a good boy we'll see some sun in the afternoon. Drizzling at the moment ...

    ... twiddle thumbs, more twiddling, twiddle again ... and then the clouds start to clear and I'm off to Longleat! Not exactly the Etosha Pan :rotfl: but at least there is something worth a look there!

    Pay the required entry and within 30 seconds of handing the cash over I feel a first spit of rain on my arm. Quick check to make sure it's not the Baboons mating on the car roof. It's not! So, the next hour and a half we have rain, stops, rain, stops, rain, stops .... Grrrr. In between the rain and the areas where you can't open the car window it's a bit frustrating, but manage to grab a few shots of the animals I am interested in.

    Both lenses work beautifully. The HSM motors are smooth and fast, no hunting around and very easy to operate manual focus too. No stiffness at all. Build quality is hefty to say the least: a bit more rugged than my previous Canon 70-200 F4 L and with a very good overall feel of quality. 70-200 F2.8 amazingly fast focusing, maybe a tiny tad slower than the Canon F4 ... splitting hairs. Nothing in it at all. Is a touch noisier though for sure, but again nothing I would be concerned about myself.

    I can feel the shake when hand holding: the 50-500 is heavy, but a couple of shots taken with the lens rested on the car door give plenty of reason for optimism. I need to get a beanbag tho'.

    So, I have uploaded the first two 50-500mm shots I've processed:

    http://www.buzzdns.com/lion1.jpg (cropped and reduced to ease loading)
    http://www.buzzdns.com/lion2.jpg (100% crop of head/whiskers detail)
    http://www.buzzdns.com/IMG_0342.jpg (100%, straight from the camera 3.3MB)

    The 100% crop gives an idea of sharpness potential. I'd maybe give it 8/10 sharp, as a hand held shot, and I think I can get sharper when the lens is properly supported and I'm not confined to shooting through the car and out the pasenger window. Colour nice and rich with good contrast. No real processing needed in PS, just a tiny bit of contrast. Done on my laptop so may need more work when I check them on my proper monitor.

    Very happy with my purchases ... the 50-500mm is definately much more usable for wildlife work than the 400mm L prime I was saving for. Framing shots is so much easier and very smooth and fast. Enjoyed it so much that I forgot to play with the 70-200mm.
     
  2. Johndm

    Johndm
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    Nice first shots.. :thumbsup:

    I seriously looked at the Bigma, I was all set to get one from LCE. Had them send me test pictures too.

    However, as my fav subjects move a little faster than yours (well usually), and the usual read read read on 'The other place', I decided to sacrifice that extra 100mm for the L as its lighter to swing around, slightly faster to focus, and of course IS.

    Bigma would be in my bag right now if the wife wasn't quite so 'understanding'... :rotfl:
     
  3. HMHB

    HMHB
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    Wow - very impressive
     
  4. DJW

    DJW
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    Sharp detail :thumbsup:
     
  5. condyk

    condyk
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    Yes, I know from today's experience that IS (or Sigma's OS) would make a big difference to the number of keepers with this size of lens. The weight isn't TOO bad, but getting a steady shot hand held isn't easy.

    In the past, when I had a Sigma 400mm and Sigma SA5 body, I used a fully contracted tripod as a bit of a small monopod type device to get steadier in a vehicle, but I'm still awaiting delivery of a monopod from 7dayshop (not their fault I knew it was on back order when I bought it!) It'll be fine with a beanbag too.

    One very cool thing with the Bigma tripod mount is you can use it as a very effective carry handle, even has finger cut outs. Very practical.

    I need to try them both with my Kenko 1.4 extender. Indoors the 70-200 works very fast with it. I reckon the Bigma will be MF only.
     
  6. paulc1

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    superb photo's..I'm envious...but geez, that lion has been around the block a bit aint he,...brilliant detail, you must be very pleased, I would be.
     
  7. DJW

    DJW
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  8. condyk

    condyk
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    Yes, I've seen Andy's shots. Finding his web site was a big inspiration, shifting me from being content with a cheaper zoom to aspiring to something bigger, faster, sharper. :thumbsup:
     
  9. Johndm

    Johndm
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    Bugger....your not uprading again already?... :rotfl: :rotfl: :rotfl:

    You sig changes too fast for me to keep up.. :smashin:
     
  10. condyk

    condyk
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    Sorry John ... and all this time you thought it was your airplane shots driving me on :rotfl: :rotfl: :rotfl: :rotfl: :rotfl:

    Ok, maybe you helped a bit :thumbsup:
     
  11. paulc1

    paulc1
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    check this guy for wildlife shots...he is my mates dads neighbour and lives in the middle of nowhere in scotland, he has just lent my mates moth trap.
    truly inspiring
    http://www.markhamblin.com/default.htm

    but getting back on topic, @condyk, did you shoot jpeg or raw?
     
  12. condyk

    condyk
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    That's a nice web site. He definately has an eye for a good shot. I liked his Lilac Breasted Roller, a common bird in Namibia but fantastic for us :clap:

    I usually shoot RAW and don't wear underpants either, but for all these shots I used JPG as I know I'd take loads of shots and reject loads because of the weather and RAW can be a mission in those circumstances.

    I will try RAW when I go out to play with the 70-200 and extender.
     
  13. paulc1

    paulc1
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    excellent non the less...Hmm commando eh..lol
     
  14. mattym

    mattym
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    great shots there condyk, most impressive indeed!
     
  15. wb1

    wb1
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    out of interest where did you pick up your bargains?
     
  16. condyk

    condyk
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    Private second hand purchases from a member of the Canon Forum:

    http://photography-on-the.net/forum/index.php?

    Good community and decent stuff for sale. Mainly US sellers tho'

    The Sales/Wants on this forum are too messy: all kinds of stuff on there, 98% of which I'm not even slightly interested in. Because of the constant turnover of adverts (not sales ... never sold a thing there, just lots of daft offers!!) you need to be checking every hour to keep up. Dunno why they don't divide it into sections :suicide:
     
  17. mattym

    mattym
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    i bought a battery grip for the 300d from a chap there for very little, a shame the 2 batteries he sent were buggered though.
     
  18. condyk

    condyk
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    Hopefully you didn't give him a positive feedback!! Honesty is so important when buying and selling SH!

    If you need good batteries at cheap price ... well I just got a couple for my 300D from HK via ebay very cheap. I can let you have the sellers ID if you need it.
     
  19. mattym

    mattym
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    i got a couple from offshore jersey type shop for £10 each, but thanks anyway...

    i didnt leave feedback at all, as the grip was as new and superbly packed, just the batteries let it down
     

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