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Thread: Pros and cons of using the Sigma 150-500mm with Samsung nx body

  1. #1

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    Pros and cons of using the Sigma 150-500mm with Samsung nx body

    Hi everyone. I want to take static wildlife photos on holiday in Namibia. The largest zoom Samsung offer is 200mm. I'm not interested in telecoverters as I've tried and don't like them. The Sigma lens has good reviews and is affordable (obviously I'll need an adapter). Two questions: what are the pros and cons of using this or any third party lens apart from losing the AF function? Are there any similar lenses (price, quality) worth considering?
    Many thanks
    Adrian
    Last edited by northlondon43; 20th July 2012 at 11:26 AM.

  2. #2

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    Re: Pros and cons of using the Sigma 150-500mm with Samsung nx body

    If you consider the Sigma 'affordable' I obviously wasted a lot of time answering your earlier thread we are living on different planets I think you may have problems with the Sigma so read the caution at dpreview about focusing and note the adaptor will need to fully connect the controls from camera to lens as there is no manual aperture control* ... good luck in your search for an answer. I am sure properly handled the 50-200 will get you great results ... last time it was new to you and that is the last thing to do on an important job/holiday take gear one is not familiar with and hoping for the best.
    *Working all the time at f/6.3 may or may not be a good idea
    Best regards JC
    Last edited by jcuknz; 20th July 2012 at 11:41 AM.

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    Re: Pros and cons of using the Sigma 150-500mm with Samsung nx body

    My wife was shooting with her Sigma 150-500mm on her Nikon D90 Namibia in Etosha this past December, when the on-board electronics died (autofocus and optical stabilization). Racked all the way out to 500mm (which is the most common shooting focal length she was using for wildlife) and focusing the lens manually hand-held was virtually impossible. Neither of us could hold it steady enough to bring it into sharp focus.

    Unless you are planning to do all of your shots using a tripod, I would say this is not going to work particularly well.

    If you find an adaptor with an aperture ring (I use a Novoflex one that allows me to use my Nikon F mount lenses on my Panasonic video camera), the aperture control issue can be solved. That being said, these adaptors (and I'm not sure about the availability of K mount ones) are pricey. I think I paid around $250 Cdn for mine. The issue, of course is that you have to shoot totally on manual and your view through the viewfinder is compromised as one is looking through whatever f-stop one has dialed in.

  4. #4

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    Re: Pros and cons of using the Sigma 150-500mm with Samsung nx body

    Au contraire JC, you're advice was helpful in making my decision not to go with the Raynox or indeed any other teleconverter....given that the Raynox was the best part of £200 I don't think it too big a hike to consider paying £550 for a dedicated zoom...especially when (or I should say 'if') Samsung do release the rumoured 300mm lens it's likely to be around £800. I'm pretty sure that the Samsung branded K adapter mount ensures aperture control on any K mount compatible lens.
    To be honest I'm still toying with the idea of the Sigma....I may well decide to go with the 200mm and hope that cropping gets me decent results.

    Many thanks for all your thoughts

    Adrian

  5. #5

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    Re: Pros and cons of using the Sigma 150-500mm with Samsung nx body

    Excellent advice Manfred :-) Not sure I like the idea of the electronics giving up like that! To be honest I'd be using the lens on a tripod at the lodges all the time and might try using it in the car with a bean bag on the window to steady things.

  6. #6

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    Re: Pros and cons of using the Sigma 150-500mm with Samsung nx body

    Assuming that you can get the 150-500 to actually attach to your camera and work, Adrian, and you are willing to accept the manual focus option; that is a good lens for the money. Are you sure about £550? or did that figure apply to something else?

    I paid around £800 a couple of years ago, when the £ was a lot stronger.

    Manual focus will be fine for static wildlife, even manually focused without OS, providing you can keep the shutter speed high enough. Which will mean faster than 1/500 and considering that the lens works best around F8 or F11 you may need to increase Iso a bit. I'm not sure how that camera performs above Iso 800.

    Because that lens is a bit slow with auto focusing I sometimes prefer to manually focus anyway.

    I have even used it successfully from a small boat handheld at 500 mm. But that did mean manually focusing at the correct distance then firing off a few shots each time the subject 'passed in front of the lens' as the boat rolled. It was impossible to hold steady focus in those conditions.

    The alternative is a suitable prime lens but you will still get the same problems.

    If your subjects are semi tame elephants, 200 mm will be fine; but I wouldn't consider that size to be any good for average UK wildlife. Which is why I went to 500 mm.

  7. #7

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    Re: Pros and cons of using the Sigma 150-500mm with Samsung nx body

    Hi Geoff. Thanks for your comments. I've found the lens for £600, not 550...oops. I guess my decision really hangs around how often and where I'd use it, i.e. whether it's worth investing in if I only use it in great light in Namibia or it'll still be agreat lens to use in the UK.

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    Re: Pros and cons of using the Sigma 150-500mm with Samsung nx body

    I certainly wouldn't call it a walk around lens; particularly considering the weight. I tend to just use it for specific purposes when I know I need that amount of magnification.

    You seem to have a good price there, but are you sure it isn't a grey import which could attract extra import tax? Some seem to be OK but I know people who have had their equipment impounded by the Customs until they paid extra.

    This lens certainly seems to have dropped in price recently; the best price I can find is £640 from Big Norman which is a Gibraltar company so they legally get around the VAT charge.

  9. #9

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    Re: Pros and cons of using the Sigma 150-500mm with Samsung nx body

    As an example, here is a shot I took with the 150-500 but using a tripod.

    Pros and cons of using the Sigma 150-500mm with Samsung nx body

    And this was hand held at a low shutter speed, to blur the propellors, 1/250, but with OS. I did struggle with these low speed shots and found that the slow auto focus meant that I missed some potential shots.

    Pros and cons of using the Sigma 150-500mm with Samsung nx body

    I did get some better images but this one shows the focusing problems with a subject that is fast approaching. I was using the AI Servo setting.
    Last edited by Geoff F; 20th July 2012 at 06:46 PM. Reason: photo linked

  10. #10

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    Re: Pros and cons of using the Sigma 150-500mm with Samsung nx body

    Hi Geoff...no it's a UK company that I've used before so no worries there. Great pictures which tempt me even more to buy the
    lens....just have to cope with the manual focussing :-)

  11. #11

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    Re: Pros and cons of using the Sigma 150-500mm with Samsung nx body

    I brought my Sigma 150-500 on a safari (attached to a Nikon D5000) and afterwards, out of frustration, bought a Nikon 70-300.. Yes, the 150-500 can make good photos, provided you have a solid tripod and can wait for the focus to make up its mind. A nice lens for sitting or swimming birds on a quiet morning alone. But on a safari, unless you are going on a specialised photo tour, or you can splurge on having your personal guide and vehicle, you will be bouncing around the bush in an overcrowded vehicle where other passengers get in your way, no rooms for a tripod and the driver/guide knows more about the wildlife than about a photographer“s requirements. For this you really need a lens you can work handheld, with quick reactions.

  12. #12

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    Re: Pros and cons of using the Sigma 150-500mm with Samsung nx body

    Good point Lennart, though we're going on a self drive safari so I can use the camera on a bean bag on the window in the car and then use a tripod at the lodges along the way :-)

  13. #13

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    Re: Pros and cons of using the Sigma 150-500mm with Samsung nx body

    Pros and cons of using the Sigma 150-500mm with Samsung nx body
    Time to brush up on your driving skills, then ;^)
    This angry bull bit not budge, so our caravan had to back up 1/2 mile at speed..
    Photo by my wife - I was too close, front seat of the first jeep.

  14. #14

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    Re: Pros and cons of using the Sigma 150-500mm with Samsung nx body

    Wonderful photo :-) Fingers crossed we don't meet any angry hippos!

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