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Customer reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
29

VINE VOICEon 6 October 2008
I have had this lens for about a year now and must admit it has far outreached my expectations. I wanted a close up lens for nature photography and have found this little baby exceptional - so long as the camera is on a tripod the crispness of the photos is remarkable. For a macro close up lens this really does a great job and for that alone I would give 5 stars. However, as a portrait lens it is amazing. Colour balance and optical clarity is as good as a Canon lens, so considering that I only bought this lens for macro work, I feel I have really struck gold.

I am from the old school of film, manual settings and focussing, long evenings in my smelly dark room, long waits for colour prints and so much disappointment at wrong settings etc. This digital age is amazing and no way would I go back to 'good old film' and all that it entails. Having this lens on my Canon EOS30D is a marriage made in heaven. It also brings out the photographer in me once again, simply by being fixed, as opposed to zoom, it means I have to use my feet to find the right spot, causing me to take more care and time both framing and setting depth of field before I begin to press that shutter.

So there you have it. A brilliant macro lens and a superb portrait lens rolled into one.

UPDATE: 23rd January 21013

Last year I updated my EOS 30D to an EOS 50D and have to say that this lens and camera combination has allowed me to get some exceptional shots. As a macro lens some of my bumble bee and hover fly shots have exceeded all my expectations. I have used this lens for thousands of shots and can honesty say it is my most used and favourite lens and continues to come up with some fantastic photographs. My best lens ever, to my mind almost as good as an 'L' lens.
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on 24 June 2010
This lens is just brilliant. The clarity of the produced images is superb.
It can sometimes be difficult when using it hand-held, but once you figure out the settings, you will be producing excellent results.
I found that setting my 450D to fully automatic often produced images with very shallow depth of field, so now I use Ap priorty and set the aperture to around F8 ro F10.
The macro capabilities are far better than I had hoped, and this lens should be a part of any photographers kit.
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on 5 March 2010
I bought this macro lens as I wanted to do some basic macro photography using a full-size sensor.. Firstly I can definitely recommend that 100mm focal length is ideal for starting at macro - 50mm is just too wide (probably more use for portraits) and 150mm is just too expensive.

This Sigma lens is solidly built and certainly doesn't feel plastic at all - it's part of the EX range which are the top tier of Sigma lenses (easy to spot by having a gold ring at the end of the lens). Focussing is sharp and as a keen amateur I certainly can't see any shortcomings in this lens in terms of quality (f2.8 is certainly wide enough for me as even at that aperture I can throw the sharpness on macro shots very easily - I actually found I was using f4 most the time as the sharpness was falling off too quickly so focus has to be spot on)

There are a few things I don't really like about this lens though. The auto-focus is quite slow (especially when compared to the USM Canon equivalent, albeit quite a bit more expensive), and the collar which is used to select auto or manual focus is quite clumsy and just doesn't feel right. That said for most pure macro work you're best off using the manual mode and once in that setting the control is pretty good.

My other complaint is that if you put a UV filter on you can't put the cap on - this is because the cap fits the inside of the front of the lens in a slightly different way to most lenses... easily rectified with either not using the UV filter (which is fine since the front of the glass is set a long way back from the front of the lens so is difficult to damage) or buying a suitable cap (prob £10).
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on 3 July 2014
This lens is a pleasure to use. Compact, lightweight, smooth. I'm using it on a Nikon D5200 - set the aperture ring to f32 and lock it - it then becomes a CPU lens with D5200, requiring manual focus - easy with the super-smooth focussing ring - all other settings (aperture, speed, ISO etc) are selected as with any Nikon lens by the camera according to how you have the camera set up. As far as I can see the only practical difference between this and the later OS HSM lens is that, well.....this doesn't have OS or HSM (with a Nikon DX camera - it DOES have autofocus with cameras that autofocus from the body). HSM (autofocus) is said not to work very well with macro lenses as a group; it can be fiddly focussing on very close flowers if they're moving, but I wonder how effective HSM would be in this context? For portrait shots it seems a lot easier - the tolerances aren't so critical and posing people don't tend to move a lot. Likewise, OS (image stabilisation) would be handy but so long as shutter speed is appropriate and matched by a steady hand it's no hardship - after all, for both these applications you'd probably want to use a tripod, so both OS and HSM become less relevant.

I paid £185 used for mine, instead of £379 for the OS HSM version. I'm glad I saved the money. Also, using this lens instead of the "bells & whistles" one forces me to think a bit more about each shot - now that's got to be a good thing, hasn't it?
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on 16 August 2008
I use this lens on my D300 Nikon. It can produce stunning results. Its nicely built and feels quite sturdy in the hand. Remeber the barrel extends during focus so at 1:1 macro the lens is quite long.
Can be used for portraits etc but its main use is Macro. Can produce images as good as the £500 Nikon version for a fraction of the cost.I rented both before i chose the sigma, so i think that tells you something...
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on 1 May 2007
Well built lens thats absolutely razor sharp. This really is a fabulous true macro lens, with seriously good optics. I'm always a little worried about using aftermarket lenses, but this lens is just too good to be true. The only catch is that its so good it puts my other lenses to shame, making me favour this even for non-macro work, and using it as a short tele lens. It comes in a proper well made case, with a proper strong lens hood, which I find acts as an extra lens protector.

Make sure you buy a 58mm skylight as a matter of course.
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VINE VOICEon 27 June 2008
I got this for my D60 and I'm very impressed. The lens comes with its own padded bag, lens hood and cap it even has a rear lens cap that locks on properly unlike the kit lens that came with the camera.
An important point to note is that although this is an auto focus lens it will not AF with the D60 nor I believe the D40. I knew this when I bought it and do not have a problem with that. I think most people who do macro photos manually focus anyway.

The camera fitting is metal and the lens is solid and well built, the lens does protrude at the front when focusing although this has not been a problem.

A part from the AF all the metering works with my D60 including the rangefinder.

Camera shake can be a problem in low light conditions but in good light I was getting very acceptable hand held close ups. To get really close though a tripod is a must.

The picture quality is excellent I have taken shots of insects that show the hair on the backs of their heads! If your camera has a good number of mega pixels (mine has 10mps) you can crop the image to get some truly interesting close up shots.
You have to watch the depth of field with this lens but I think that's the same for all macros.
Nikon's micro 105mm lens is twice as much as this, although you do get vibration reduction, and for D60 owner's auto focus, but for the price the Sigma lens cannot be beaten.
review image review image
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on 20 August 2010
Bought this to do some macro photos and have ended up using it also for some great portrait shots and general telephoto work. It is a fast lens which is good for low light or short DOF, and in good light focussing is quick and precise. I use it on my Canon 40D and it feels nice on the camera. For real close up work a tripod is a must as you have to use f8 or more to get some depth into the photo. Love it.
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on 23 August 2009
I've gotten more and more into photography, although I'm not that great a photographer and I don't have a lot of money to spend on equipment, but I found myself taking more and more shots of things that were about 1 - 10cm tall, so I was in the market for a macro lens. It took me 6 months to decide to go for a macro lens, since they are so expensive and I didn't have a camera with interchangeable lenses, so I was also in the market for a DSLR to fit the lens to.

All the reviews I read said the Nikon 105mm Micro lens is one of the best macro lenses available, but it costs twice as much as the Sigma - and that's a lot of money to me.

However, the reviews for the Sigma were very positive and at the price Amazon was offering the Sigma at, I decided to finally enter the macro market. Well, the good news is that the reviews are right - this is a great lens for the price and I needn't have worried about getting it.

It's a fairly small lens, easy to handle, with a very big manual focusing ring - a vital feature. However, when you focus close up, the lens extends itself to twice it's length, which takes some getting used to (and you might get some ribald comments if you show it off in the pub).

I bought a second hand Nikon D80 to attach the lens to and they make a perfect pairing. I use the autofocus all the time as my eyesight isn't that great and for most distances I don't have any problems with getting a focus lock. Where the lens starts to have 'problems' is in the short focal distances as it can start to hunt for a lock. But I'm not convinced that this is a problem as very, very small distances on the Subject seem to cause a re-focus if you move the camera slightly, and I don't have the steadiest hands in the world. However, it's not really a problem as you can over-ride autofocus and manually focus at the short distances - and at the short focal distance I can tell if the focus is where I want it to be.

Having used the lens for a few months, I would recommend it to anyone on a reasonable budget - if you're rich, there're better lenses out there, but normal folk should go for the Sigma over a Nikor lens every time. The Sigma produces sharp results, very nice Bokeh and is a joy to use.

I don't use a lens cap as the lens is buried so deep inside the housing when the camera is switched off, but then I only use the lens inside the house for still life shots - I'd use a cap if I was taking it outside. A heavy tripod is also recommended to hold the camera stable, especially for the closest shots.

This lens is a real bargain compared to the competition, is well made, produces excellent images and is really easy to use. It gets my vote every time.
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on 22 August 2017
Works great. This met my expectations and more So these are not what I was expecting...but I love them!! Very pretty and not difficult to work with at all. Not bad at all Will purchase products from this company again, as needed.
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