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Telephoto Lenses with focal lengths longer than 60mm.

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  #1  
Old 15th February 2008
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CaptainD CaptainD is offline
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Cool Sigma "Bigma" 50-500mm tale of woe with a happy ending!

I learnt a life lesson yesterday following a visit to Sigma UK but the story starts back in 2006.

I bought a new Sigma "Bigma" 50-500mm lens in September 2006 from a dealer in America which was the first Sigma lens I had ever owned. However when I tried it on my E-1 the auto focus performance was very poor, hunting and rarely locking on. So I ended up, for some reason doubting myself, that it was happening because of something I was doing or that my E-1 body was some how affecting it. Result, I only ever used it 3 or 4 times until I bought a E-510 last summer.

The lens still did not perform well on my sparkling new E-510, but again for some reason I did not believe that such an expensive high quality lens could be defective when new. Next thing I decide to do is put the lens back in its box and put it in the cuboard. Net result being that I never used the lens and every time I thought about it I simply got stressed and fed up! So I now let the lens go past its 1 year warranty and on a rainy Sunday afternoon I decide to clear my cuboard up and rediscover this monster that makes me frustrated and stressed.

By chance I sold some of my spare Olympus gear to a lovely guy in Scotland and while we were chatting on the phone he mentions that he has a "Bigma". He then tells me how happy he is with the lens and when I ask about the auto focus he tells me that it is great no problems at all. He also tells me that our great administrator Ian has some contacts at Sigma UK and I should talk to him. Then a miracle happens I decide to actually do something about it before Christmas !!

I sent Ian a PM who encourages me to return the lens to Sigma. So I rang them and spoke to one of their service engineers who tells me they would be happy to test the lens but they may have to charge me as the lens is out of warranty but please leave it till after Christmas to post it back. So yours truely then gets sick after Christmas just to delay things further until yesterday when I decide that as I do not live too far from Sigma UK I will drive up and deliver the lens rather than risk posting it.

I arrive at Sigma and ring the bell and a smiling friendly face welcomes me and listens to my tale inaction very sympathetically. He then he disappears with my lens saying "give me 5 minutes and I will be back". He returns and tells me that having done a quick "out of the window" check that there is definitely something wrong with the lens and that they will be very happy to repair it and make no charge for it as it must have been faulty since new.

So for any readers that have kept reading all this, I have learnt a very big life lesson. Simply, if something bothers you just get on and actually do something about it and do not let it wind you up by not doing anything!!

I have nothing but praise for the wonderful guys at Sigma UK who could not have been nicer. Hopefully in a couple of weeks I will have the pleasure of returning to Sigma to pick up my fully working "Bigma". So that will bring to a close this frankly pathetic 16 months of dithering by "Captain Inaction"

Cheers

Chris

P.S. A big thank-you to Ian for giving me a reason to do something!

P.P.S. Could this be the longest post on our great forum?

P.P.P.S. Thanks for staying to the end!
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Old 15th February 2008
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Re: Sigma "Bigma" 50-500mm tale of woe with a happy ending!

Great story Chris, thanks for sharing.

I must admit, I do very much like the look of the Sigma Bigma and would love to see some shots of yours taken on your E-510 with this lens if you'd be willing to post some.

I am loving the Zuiko 70-300 and would like to consider the next step up in terms of zoom range.

Please let us know how you get on with it, thanks.
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Old 15th February 2008
emirpprime
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Re: Sigma "Bigma" 50-500mm tale of woe with a happy ending!

Wow! Glad you got it sorted Thats some tale and a lesson to us all. Whats more, it brings me a little more confidence in Sigma and the 50-500, which I hope to add to my kit before too long!
All the best,
Phil
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Old 15th February 2008
j.baker j.baker is offline
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Re: Sigma "Bigma" 50-500mm tale of woe with a happy ending!

I am thinking about getting the bigma sometime in the next year. Could someone do me a favour?

Can someone take a picture of the moon, at full zoom, so I see what it looks like?

It good that Sigma are fixing the lens for you.
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Old 15th February 2008
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Smile Re: Sigma "Bigma" 50-500mm tale of woe with a happy ending!

I will be more than happy to post some Bigma pictures when I reunited with my fully functional Bigma. Sigma will be at the Focus on Imaging show, they will be happy to welcome visitors to their stand. If all of Sigmas staff are as nice as the chap I met it will be well worth the visit to their stand. I wonder if Sigmas new monster 200-500 F2.8 lens will be on display, no four thirds option but it would be fascinating to see it.

http://www.dpreview.com/news/0801/08...igma250500.asp

My Bigma adventure will hopefully continue in a couple of weeks!!

Cheers

Chris
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  #6  
Old 15th February 2008
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Re: Sigma "Bigma" 50-500mm tale of woe with a happy ending!

Hi Chris

Glad you got the lens sorted and hopefully you can now enjoy its potential when you get it back, just a pain to carry about on a long day!

J Backer, ive posted up moon pics on another forum ill put the link to the pics, ive took a load of moon pictures much the bemusement of my gf who had to stand in the freezing cold with me opps. I read reviews saying that the lens went a little soft at 500mm so i took most of mine at 400-450 and they come out well, they were taken with an e400.

http://smg.photobucket.com/albums/v2...=PB2002161.jpg

I thought it lacked a little sharpness but overall it sharpens up well. Have a look at the next picture in the bucket and it surprised me, the object was a good half mile away at least and pushing 50mph!

Steve
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Old 15th February 2008
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HughofBardfield HughofBardfield is offline
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Re: Sigma "Bigma" 50-500mm tale of woe with a happy ending!

That's a very interesting and useful story. It's good to hear Sigma were so helpful.

Unfortunately, their quality control does seem a bit "iffy" given the number of similar stories of faults one hears on various forums. However, I have three Sigma lenses, a 55-200, which I think is brilliant value for money and has had a lot of use, a 105 which is lovely and crisp, and a 135-400 acquired, used, just before Christmas.

Because of an accident (to me, not the lens), I have only just been able to get the 135-400 out of the box and try it out this past weekend. To say I was disappointed is an understatement, with unacceptably soft results but I am witholding judgement as operator error could well have been the problem. I have seen very good results with the lens on Flickr. I need to try again with the lens stopped down.

Your story encourages me to think that if there is a problem, I can simply take it over (presumably to Welwyn Garden City?) and get Sigma to fix it. That's quite heartening, even if it costs me money!
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Old 15th February 2008
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Re: Sigma "Bigma" 50-500mm tale of woe with a happy ending!

Dear Hugh,

I must admit I was letting off steam about my Bigma story to a fellow Olympus nut at work today. He metntioned that he had tried 3 55-200mm 4/3rds Sigma lenses which all had faults in his opinion so he returned them all. This may support your comments re Sigma quality control.

But I have to say that my experiences so far with the Sigma UK staff has been great. Following just a phone call to initially have a chat about my problem and ask if I could deliver the lens rather than posting it. They staff have excelled themselves, a smile and a sympathetic ear go such a long way.

Cheers

Chris
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  #9  
Old 23rd February 2008
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Re: Sigma "Bigma" 50-500mm tale of woe with a happy ending!

Hi all,

Just found this review of the Bigma

http://www.phototakers.com/forum/arc...x-dg-30461.htm

I am quite impressed. The review is of the old version and not of the HSM version.

PeterD
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Old 23rd February 2008
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Re: Sigma "Bigma" 50-500mm tale of woe with a happy ending!

This is the next lens on my wish list... simply gotta have a Bigma
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  #11  
Old 23rd February 2008
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Re: Sigma "Bigma" 50-500mm tale of woe with a happy ending!

Quote:
Originally Posted by theMusicMan View Post
This is the next lens on my wish list... simply gotta have a Bigma
John

Here is the link to the tech specs and four review comments

http://www.sigma-imaging-uk.com/lens...m/50-500mm.htm

PeterD
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Old 23rd February 2008
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Re: Sigma "Bigma" 50-500mm tale of woe with a happy ending!

Thanks Peter, much appreciated.
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  #13  
Old 23rd February 2008
emirpprime
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Re: Sigma "Bigma" 50-500mm tale of woe with a happy ending!

It is supposed to be the best of the 3 500mm (consumer atleast) lenses Sigma make, and ironically its the one with the longest zoom range! As the review PeterD pointed to says, its only really the performance at the long end I'm interested in, but its very good to know its still usable at shorter lengths too.
Phil
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Old 23rd February 2008
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Re: Sigma "Bigma" 50-500mm tale of woe with a happy ending!

Me too Phi re performance at long end. I am getting on very well with the ZD 70-300 and am enjoying the reach of this lens so for me, it's an inevitable next step I guess.

Not sure when I'll grab one, but I am certain it will be added to my arsenal!
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  #15  
Old 23rd February 2008
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Re: Sigma "Bigma" 50-500mm tale of woe with a happy ending!

Quote:
Originally Posted by theMusicMan View Post
Me too Phi re performance at long end. I am getting on very well with the ZD 70-300 and am enjoying the reach of this lens so for me, it's an inevitable next step I guess.

Not sure when I'll grab one, but I am certain it will be added to my arsenal!
John, Phil, Its only since the very interesting 'getting better' thread of last weekend that I was seriously looking for more reach. Nick's comments regarding image size versus detail etc clinched it for me. Whilst I like the 70-300 very much, I have been looking at my options. Should I go for the x1.4 or x2.0 converter in conjunction with this lens or not or, should I go for something bigger? This thread made me look towards this lens. It is also capable of working with a 2x converter! Not sure if the 4/3 fitting lens works with af or not. If anyone has info on this I would appreciate it.

One thing for sure is that I must invest in a monopod. John, as I recall santa gave you one this year. Any feedback you can give me will be very much appreciated. I already have permission from 'she who must be obeyed' to buy one.

Cheers

PeterD
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