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Home » Cameras, DSLR & MFT (micro four thirds) » SLR & MFT (micro four thirds) Lenses   · Next Product »
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Sigma 500mm f4.5 APO EX
Reviews Views Date of last review
9 38839 Tue March 8, 2016
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Recommended By Average Price Average Rating
100% of reviewers $1,900.00 9.3
51Sigma500mmf4_5.jpg
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Description: Lens Construction 12 elements in 9 groups Closest Focusing 4 m / 13.12 ft.
Filter Attachment Size 46mm (rear)
Weight 3,100g
Dia. x Length (mm) 123 x 350
Keywords: Lens, 500mm, Sigma



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shafferm
Registered User

Registered: December 2003
Location: Richmond, VA
Posts: 1
Review Date: Tue December 16, 2003 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: Sharp and good auto focus mechanism
Cons: A bit heavy

I have had and used both the Nikon and Canon versions, with superb results. Good clarity, no color aberations and flat field. Still have and use the Canon EOS version. Good at full aperture, better at f11. When used with a good tripod head the lens is versatile, fast and sharp. I use it with the Sidekick and BH-1 ball head as well as a dual mount that handles the 500mm with 10D and the 180 Sigma macro with the Rebel 300d at the same time. Lunar pictures made with the 500mm and 2x tleconverter are good with excelent surface detail on the lunar surface. No birds there though.
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Andy Bright

Administrator

Registered: August 2002
Location: S.E. England
Posts: 5387
Review Date: Tue January 13, 2004 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: clarity of final image, speed and silence of the AF
Cons: not sure on the finish, prefer hard metal or flat rubberised

Longest lens I have ever used, previously the longest was an old 300mm f2.8. I have this lens in Nikon mount.
Relatively compact compared to the main 500mm f4 lenses around. Very smooth and silent AF operation. Can be set to AF at total range (3m-infinity), 3m-8m or 8m-infinity). Nikon version allows instant MF without having use any switches, though dependant on camera model used.
Very sharp final image, no chromatic problems at all and still producing crisp images with a 1.4x teleconverter (Kenko pro)
Not sure about the finish on the lens, the velvety finish may be warm to touch in the winter but attracts dirt... and god knows how it will look after removing any camo tape.
Excellent value with recent price cuts, a real bargain for anyone looking for a fast (ish) long lens.

My images taken with this lens can be found here http://www.digiscoped.com/dslrphotoindex.html

And a dedicated review here http://www.digiscoped.com/Sigma500.html
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RogW

Registered User

Registered: February 2007
Location: Somerset, UK
Posts: 32
Review Date: Fri February 9, 2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: $1,900.00 | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Price compared to competition, Image quility with and without teleconvertors
Cons: Not sure on finish,

Having previousl;y been using a 300mm f4.0 lens and teleconvertors, i decided that a larger lens would be very usefull, what made me decide on the sigma, price! and also positive reviews around the net. Having used it for several months now i can say that yes it is an excelent lens. Shard at all apetures without t/c and from around 1 stop from wide open with t/c\'s (both 1.4 and 1.4 nikon, tabs removed).
The extra 1/3 of a stop you would gain going for nikon 500, is it worth the extra well i cant say i don\'t still hanker after on but i am more than happy with the sigma and will not be upgrading(save for the event of large lottery win!)
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postcardcv

Super Moderator

Registered: August 2003
Location: Norfolk
Posts: 17119
Review Date: Wed February 28, 2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: stunning IQ, fast AF
Cons: none at the price

I bought this lens about 18 months ago as an upgrade from the Sigma 170-500 and love it.

The first thing that struck me when I got it was just how sharp the images were, even when shooting wide open. At f4.5 you can count the feathers, stopped down to f6.3-f8 and it\'s even more impressive. The AF is fast and quiet, it just snaps into focus. I often use this lens with a 1.4x tc (taped pins to retain AF), AF is still fast (difference only notices in poor light) and acurate.

The close focus of 4.5m seemed quite limiting on paper, but in real life it\'s not an issue. A starling sized bird will basically frame fill at this distance. It\'s only been on rare occassions that this has cost me a shot.

the lens hood is large and solid so offers decent protection to the front element. The foot is also large alloing firm attachment to a tripod. It is a large, fairly heavy lens, and definitely works best on a tripod.

It has two slight disadvantages over the Canon - no IS and f4.5 rather than f4, but given the difference in price I doubt I\'ll ever justify an upgrade. For it\'s price I think this lens is unbeatable value, even better if you can pick up a secondhand one.

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http://www.facebook.com/BlueSkyBirds
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shutterflyd50
Registered User

Registered: July 2007
Location: Ohio
Posts: 54
Review Date: Fri July 13, 2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 0 

 
Pros:
Cons:

where in the world did you find it for $1,900?
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shutterflyd50
Registered User

Registered: July 2007
Location: Ohio
Posts: 54
Review Date: Fri July 13, 2007 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 0 

 
Pros:
Cons:

Hey does anyone want to get rid of their sigma 500mm f4.5 APO EX for $1,900 or less?
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rezMole

Registered User

Registered: February 2005
Location: Bury
Posts: 1344
Review Date: Sat April 12, 2008 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 10 

 
Pros: price, image quality, portability, fast AF
Cons: none

Purchased six months ago, secondhand, I was using this on my Nikon D70. It was an upgrade from a Tamron 200-500 (itself a great lens for the price).

It was only after upgraging to a Nikon D300 that I have realised just how good this Sigma is! AF is fast and images are sharp.

Although best on a tripod, this lens is quite usable resting on the window ledge in a hide or used on a monopod - unlike some 500mm lenses.

the lens hood is large and solid so offers decent protection to the front element. The foot is also large alloing firm attachment to a tripod. It is a large, fairly heavy lens, and definitely works best on a tripod.

For anyone wanting a good quality prime lens for birding, this is the one to buy - unless you win the lottery or have a very well-paid job, an understanding wife and can afford a Nikon or Canon prime!

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rezMole birds | My flickr birds A-Z collection
Gear: Nikon D800, Sigma 150-600 Sport, Leica APO77 with 20-60 zoom, Leica Ultravid 8x42
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gary1952

Second childhood and loving it.

Registered: February 2010
Location: Thailand
Posts: 120
Review Date: Sat April 2, 2011 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 8 

 
Pros: Sharp, light weight, very portable
Cons: None used with Pentax. No option's

I use this lens and the 300mm f2.8 for birding. With the K-5 Pentax i find it a good set up. The 500 is superb for me. Light weight and compact. Sharp enought for birding for sure. I decided in this in the Pentax mount because i travel alot. And wanted screw focus all mechanical. I am not sorry. The lens is built like a tank. I keep it in a rubber rain coat 100% of the time. I don't even remember what it looks like actually. IS on the Pentax is great!!! Hand holding is a pleasure with this lens. Not for long but do able.
Highly recommended by me anyway.

Note: I do not see a review of the 300mm f2.8 Sigma prime. I would like to add the prime is reguarded by me to be superior to the 120-300mm zoom. Combined with a IS which Pentax and Sony have, really makes these lenses shine like I have never seen. I bought both of these lenses new for Pentax just for the IS in camera. In my opinion canon and nikon users are really missing out on these two lenses. With no IS.

All pics with the 300mm f2.8 and 500mm f4.5 are here. If you are interested in some real life pics.

www.flickr.com/photos/avianphotos/
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Fowl Mouth

Just a guy with dogs

Registered: November 2005
Location: Connecticut
Posts: 6163
Review Date: Tue March 8, 2016 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 9 

 
Pros: Size, weight, nominal sharpness, contrast, AF speed
Cons: Ugly bokeh when stopped down, tripod collar fixed

I'm truly late to the party with this oldie but goodie. After many years of lust I finally nabbed a used copy one year ago. Mine is a pre-DG. After spending seven years shooting with a Sigma 150-500 OS, this lens surprised me immediately with both how much heavier that much glass is, and how freaking sharp it is, even wide open...even wide open with a cheap 2x TC!

The lens is not light weight, but certainly is by 500mm prime standards. And even though hand holding can be taxing over time, I find no issues doing BIF with this lens.

Bokeh is decent wide open, certainly nicer than my 150-500, although not as smooth as my Canon 70-200 1:4. Once you cinch the aperture to 5.6 there is a funny look to grass and branches. But I can live with this. It just forces me to be more selective with setting up my shots.

I wonder how long it will be before it is discontinued and replaced by a lighter version with OS. Time will tell.

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Jason
Vertiable Imagery - photography by Jason Scherff
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