Sigma 105mm f/2.8 EX DG Macro Lens

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The Lens Power Layout Produces an Excellent Optical Performance

Sigma 105mm F2.8 MACRO LensI debated between this and the 105 Nikkor but at $ 350 versus $100%, I decided to try the Sigma and return it if it was not satisfactory. The build seems good with a very solid feel and, while the autofocus is a bit slower than the AF-s Nikkors, it is fine for all but the macro shots which need manual focus anyway. Comparing sharpness at f8, it is about as sharp as my 18-135 at the center and much, much sharper as you move from the center. Overall, I'm very happy I saved the $450.

Ideal lenses for Digital SLR Cameras while retaining suitability for traditional 35mm SLRsA medium telephoto macro lens which is designed for traditional and digital SLR cameras, its lens power layout produces an excellent optical performance. The lens coating cuts down ghost. The DG lens is designed to reduce the influence of harmful light caused by reflections from the digital image sensor.

Its outstanding optical performance provides the ultimate correction against lateral chromatic aberration and distortion. This prime lens boasts compact dimensions of 2.9" (maximum diameter) and 3.7" (overall length).

It has a filter size of 58mm and, at just 15.8 OZ, is also extremely lightweight. The minimum focusing distance of 31.2cm (12.2in) is capable of macro photography with a maximum magnification of 1:1. It is possible to enjoy photography from life-size close-up to infinity.

This lens is equipped with a "Focus Limiter Switch" that limits the AF range so improving the speed and accuracy of auto focus. It also incorporates a Dual Focus (DF) system that is designed to make the lens easy to hold during auto focusing.

The large focus ring offers smooth and positive action whilst focusing manually. A screw-in hood is included, for convenient use of circular polarizing filters. This telephoto macro lens has an equivalent field of view of 178mm on a digital SLR camera (when used with the SD10).

Note: this lens has no built-in motor and will not autofocus on the Nikon D40/D40x, Nikon D60, Nikon D3000, Nikon D3100 or the Nikon D5000 Cameras. 

Features

    Compact and lightweight medium telephoto macro lens.

    Optimized image quality for Digital SLR cameras. Super Multi Layer (SML) coating reduces the ghost caused by reflections from thesurface of digital image sensors

    Maximum magnification of 1:1

    Focus Limiter Switch that limits the AF range so improving the speed and accuracy of auto focus

    Dual Focus (DF) system that is designed to make the lens easy to hold during auto focusing

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Specifications
Overview
Lens stylePrime lens
Max Format Size 35mm FF  
Lens focal length105 mm  
Stabilization type No  
Camera mount Canon EF, Four Thirds, Pentax KAF, Sony Alpha, Sigma SA, Nikon F (FX)  
Angle of view 23.3  
Aperture (lens diaphragm)
Largest aperture opening F2.8  
Smallest aperture opening F32.0  
Includes aperture ring No  
Total diaphragm blades 8  
Aperture annotations Minimum aperture is F45 on Canon, Sigma and Sony mount versions  
Optical
Total Elements 11  
Number of Groups 10  
Focusing
Minimum focus distance 0.31 m (12.32")  
Maximum magnification ratio 1 x  
Autofocus type Yes  
Lens motor Micromotor  
Full time manual focus No  
Focusing method Extending front  
Focus notes Dual focus system. Floating focus mechanism. Screw drive on Nikon, Pentax and Sony mounts  
Lens distance scale Yes  
Depth of field scale Yes  
Focus distance limiter yes (0.4m)  
Physical features
Overall weight460 g (1.01 lb)  
Lens diameter 74 mm (2.91")  
Overall length 98 mm (3.84")  
Sealing No  
Filter thread size 58 mm  
Filter annotations Does not rotate on focusing  
Lens hood included Yes


Lens Includes
Sigma 105mm f/2.8 EX DG Lens Hood

Lens Hood

Soft Case

1 Year International Warranty plus 3 Year Sigma U.S.A. Extended Warranty (Total Warranty is 4 Years from Date of Purchase)

Accessories


Reviews
Multi-purpose portrait, sports, macro at reasonable price, March 19, 2009

By Jeremy (Madison, AL USA)s

I've been holding out for the long-awaited Olympus 100mm prime, which is on the lens "Road Map", projected for 2008, then 2009. But when it was not officially announced at PMA this year, I decided it was high time to try this Sigma.

I recently bought the Sigma 30, and have been thrilled (I gave that 4 stars but I would give it 5 in retrospect). Fast lenses provide such great artistic control over backgrounds, once you get used to them the slow (but otherwise good) kit lenses do not go on the camera very much.

It is well built, a pleasure to use. It focuses fairly fast on my E-510, although if it "misses", and if you don't have the Limit switch turned on, it will focus all the way in to macro and back out, which takes an age. Focusing speed seems to be affected by battery state - especially in poor light - and a battery in its last 1/3 will focus noticeably slower.

The front element is buried down almost in a tunnel - the included hood is quite unnecessary. This piece of glass is also surprisingly small. Photo geeks like to show off big lenses with big glass - it looks expensive because it IS expensive - and it is a little surprising that the advertized length and speed could be accommodated with a physically small piece of glass.

I haven often read on photo forums where photo beginners want pictures of their kids playing little league indoors, like basketball. This would be a great lens for this - and quite affordable, too.

Speed is everything for indoors action shots. The Sigma is pretty fast at f/2.8. The roughly equivalent Olympus kit lens is the 40-150 f/4-5.6, which you will note gets slower as the zoom goes out. At 105mm, it will be about 1.5 stops (=2^1.5 = approx 3x) slower than the Sigma. For indoor shooting, all else being equal, if you have 1/30th on the kit lens, you will see 1/60th or even 1/100th on the Sigma. The Sigma will shoot much superior pictures for this subject.

On a four-thirds camera, 105mm is a bit longer than a classic portrait length. You will be standing about 10 feet away from the subject for head shots, and 20ft or even 40ft for body shots depending on whether it is a child or adult. However, it shoots crisp portraits in the modern style - if you want any of the old-fashioned but often flattering blooms or other distortions of old lenses, check out M42 screw-type lenses and adapters on ebay, or use Photoshop.

The bonus is the macro feature. This was not a selling point for me at the time, but having used it, there is a lot of nature's art that reveals its beauty up close. Small buds breaking into flower, blades of grass, small insects, interesting surface textures, these are easy subjects to enhance your enjoyment of the hobby.


What a great little lens!, June 18, 2008

By Lawrence Jacobsen "LJguitar" (Cheyenne, WY USA)

I've owned this for over a month and have shot close to a thousand pics with it. It is fast - f2.8 - accurate and produces closeup shots with great detail.

It's also a great ''walk-about'' lens since it focuses from 12 inches to infinity. And the 105mm length (200 mm equivalent on a 35mm slr) is a great medium-telephoto length.

The unit is well built, solid and light enough to handhold. I own it in a 4/3 configuration (Olympus E-500 camera) and love the ability to switch from auto to manual in about 2 seconds, and to limit the auto focus to a limited range at the touch of a switch. I found that I can switch from auto to manual without looking, and love the large focus ring.

I use this coupled with the Olympus 25mm macro extension ring, and it produces amazing close shots. The lens itself is 1:1 and the extender boosts that considerably while retaining all my auto lens settings and capability.

I don't mind the matte finish, and love the fact that it doesn't generally need a lens shade because the front element is recessed quite a ways into the front of the housing.

I've been using some old Nikor and Sigma manual lenses from the 1970s, 80s and 90s, but they can be frustrating to open the aperture and focus and then stop down to shoot - especially with insects. By the time I open the aperture, focus and stop down they have often moved. And when a manual lens is stopped down to f/8 or f/11 it's too dark to see what's going on. The Sigma being coupled with my camera's electronics solves the dilemma and delivers bright views to the viewfinder.

You cannot preview the DOF, but a quick shot and chipmunking the viewfinder will show you what's going on.

I'd recommend this lens to anyone who is serious about macro work, and doesn't want to pack a ton-o-gear around with them. Being able to carry just the body, lens, and extender plus a tripod is enough gear to do some serious shooting.

Press Release
Sunday, 20 June 2004
MACRO 105mm F2.8 EX DG

A new design concept for digital cameras.

Compact and lightweight medium telephoto macro lens.

    Digital characteristics were taken into consideration when designing the lens power layout. This macro lens is specially coated to reduce the flare and ghosting which tend to appear in shots taken with digital cameras.
    Features a compact lens design with an overall length of just 95mm.
    Minimum aperture of F45 (for Sigma, Canon and KonicaMinolta mounts)
    A screw-in lens hood is included, for convenient use of circular polarizing filters
    Sigma Corporation is pleased to announce the launch of the new MACRO 105mm F2.8 EX DG lens.
This new medium telephoto macro lens employs a new design concept for digital SLR cameras, its new lens power layout produces an excellent optical performance. The new lens coating and new lens design cuts down flare and ghost. The new DG lens is designed to reduce the influence of harmful light caused by reflections from the digital image sensor. Its outstanding optical performance provides the ultimate correction against transverse chromatic aberration and distortion.

The lens demonstrates an excellent performance with both digital and 35mm film SLR cameras. This lens boasts compact dimensions of ?74mm (maximum diameter) and 95mm (overall length). It has a filter size of ?58mm and, at just 450gms, is also extremely lightweight. The minimum focusing distance of 31.2cm (12.2") is capable of macro photography with a maximum magnification of 1:1. It is possible to enjoy photography from life-size close-up to infinity. Sigma, Canon and KonicaMinolta mounts have a minimum aperture of F/45 for incredible depth of field (or F32 for Nikon and Pentax mounts). This lens is equipped with a "Focus Limiter Switch" that limits the AF range so improving the speed and accuracy of autofocus. It also incorporates a Dual Focus (DF) system that is designed to make the lens easy to hold during auto focusing. The large focus ring offers smooth and positive action whilst focusing manually. A screw-in hood is included, for convenient use of circular polarizing filters. This telephoto macro lens has an equivalent field of view of 178mm on a digital SLR camera (when used with the SD10).

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Sigma 105mm f/2.8 EX DG Macro Lens

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