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Thread: Sigma 150mm Macro stuggles

  1. #1
    New Member EmzDad's Avatar
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    Sigma 150mm Macro struggles

    Evening all,

    I am learning how to use my Sigma 150mm Macro at the moment. I am running into trouble with the flash when using this lens, it does not like to open the flash when this lens is fitted.

    I have just put my Nikon 35mm back on and the flash will open every time I press the button.

    Also it does not like to fire the flash when this lens is fitted, it just locks up. I can sometimes wait a little and it seems to reset.. other times it is camera off and then on to get it to work again.


    The camera Body is D5500 Nikon.


    Thanks
    Shane
    Last edited by EmzDad; 21-03-2016 at 11:53pm.
    My 12 13 year old Daughter may be able to do everything via touch screen on the D5500, but at least there is still a button to press to take the photo, so I feel confident...


  2. #2
    Member Ross the fiddler's Avatar
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    That sounds like a problem with the camera (use) & not with the lens. Are you using fully Auto or Auto flash (I don't know Nikon methods) because it sounds like you need to be using something like Aperture Priority (Av ?) to control the depth of field (to get a large enough DoF) for macro use & also to select Flash Fill (or whatever Nikon calls it) to force the flash to work. With macro your pop-up flash may not be adequate for this use with this lens & of course the lens hood would need to be off as well (to not shade the subject from the flash), but one way to use the built in flash for macro use is to use something to reflect or diffuse the light onto the subject & a sheet of white paper can do that quite effectively, either reflect or diffuse by holding the paper at the end of the lens of the subject at the angle to do one or the other.

    To reflect []___ \ or diffuse []___/ The [] is the camera, the underline ___ is the lens & the \ & / is the paper showing the angle. I hope that is helpful & not teaching you how to suck eggs.
    Last edited by Ross the fiddler; 22-03-2016 at 6:26pm.
    Ross
    I fiddle with violins (when I'm not fiddling with a camera).

    Cameras: OM-D E-M1 & Mk II, Olympus Stylus 1, OM-D E-M5.
    Lenses: M.ZD40-150mm f2.8 PRO Lens with MC-14, M.ZD12-50, M.ZD60 Macro, M.ZD75-300 Mk II, MMF-3, ZD14-54 II, ZD12-60 SWD, ZD50-200 SWD, EC14, EC20, EX25, Sigma 150mm F2.8 APO Macro DG HSM.
    Flashes: FL36R X2, FL50R, FL50.
    Software: Capture One Pro 10 (& Olympus Viewer 3).

  3. #3
    Arch-Σigmoid Ausphotography Regular ameerat42's Avatar
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    Nope! It seems to be a Sigma problem.
    Read this, Shane: http://www.dpreview.com/articles/215...th-nikon-d5300
    Then read about this other person's problem with a different lens: http://www.dpreview.com/forums/thread/3823778

    I know you have a D5500, but it would be the same (in)compatibilty issue.
    Last edited by ameerat42; 22-03-2016 at 7:29pm.
    CC, Image editing OK.

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    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    Am's reply is interesting.


    Quote Originally Posted by EmzDad View Post
    ......

    Also it does not like to fire the flash when this lens is fitted, it just locks up. I can sometimes wait a little and it seems to reset.. other times it is camera off and then on to get it to work again.


    The camera Body is D5500 Nikon.


    Thanks
    Shane
    Something that may help to diagnose if the issue is caused by the lens.

    Even without any lens attached(but camera is turned on), the flash release button should always work.
    So that is, you don't actually need a lens fitted for the flash to pop up.

    If you can get the camera with the Sigma lens fitted to do the same lockup situation, and leaving the camera untouched(ie. still on), remove the lens and try to pop the flash up with no lens fitted.
    If the camera allows the flash to pop up without the Sigma lens fitted now, then it's 99.999% for sure that the lens is locking up the camera somehow and not allowing the flash to pop.

    What I'd do as well; if the camera allows the flash to op up without the Sigma lens fitted, then try it again with the Sigma lens fitted again.
    Remember all this time, you don't switch the camera off.
    The camera is safe to leave on with no lens attached.

    That lens is not compatible with the Sigma lens dock doodad, but Sigma should fix it for no charge if it turns out that the lens is causing the problem.

    Hope it all works out for 'ya .. and let us know what eventuates.

    ps. it could also be that your particular lens is the issue .. not the Sigma 150mm macro lens in general.
    Could have a slightly faulty/buggy comms chip or something weird like that.
    Last edited by arthurking83; 22-03-2016 at 7:49pm.
    Nikon D800E, D300, D70s
    {Nikon} -> 50/1.2 : 500/8(CPU'd) : 105/2.8VR Micro : 180/2.8ais : 105mm f/1.8ais : 24mm/2ais
    {Sigma}; ->10-20/4-5.6 : 50/1.4 : 12-24/4.5-5.6II : 150-600mm|S
    {Tamron}; -> 17-50/2.8 : 28-75/2.8 : 70-200/2.8 : 300/2.8 SP MF : 24-70/2.8VC


  5. #5
    Member Ross the fiddler's Avatar
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    I would still like to know what mode (PASM or Auto) the OP is using with the flash release not working as I thought that may have only been in an Auto mode, but if the camera locks up........ ???

    I know my 4/3's version of the Sigma HSM 150 mm macro lens was not happy with Contrast Detect AF (Live View) on the E-M5 & would seem to find focus & then at the end go off again but thankfully it performs nicely with the on sensor PD-AF of the Olympus OM-D E-M1. I believe there were firmware issues with the early release of those lenses (several years ago).

  6. #6
    Arch-Σigmoid Ausphotography Regular ameerat42's Avatar
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    I see your point now. So you're asking whether in (too) low light in Auto the flash pops up?

    Good question for Shane. What mode are you using when this happens? - Just to be specific

    (Must try it myself sometime. I have not yet weaned myself off exclusive Manual exposure, though I highly enjoy
    AF and OS - or IS, or VR, or...)

  7. #7
    Member Ross the fiddler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ameerat42 View Post
    I see your point now. So you're asking whether in (too) low light in Auto the flash pops up?

    Good question for Shane. What mode are you using when this happens? - Just to be specific

    (Must try it myself sometime. I have not yet weaned myself off exclusive Manual exposure, though I highly enjoy
    AF and OS - or IS, or VR, or...)
    Funny. I tend to use Aperture Priority most of the time but some occasions require Manual (& even Shutter Priority). You could use P for professional. I shouldn't laugh because some professionals actually do use it (event, journalist type of occasions) just to make sure they get an image.
    Last edited by Ross the fiddler; 22-03-2016 at 9:47pm.

  8. #8
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    Evening all, this http://www.dpreview.com/forums/thread/3823778 is exactly what happens.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Ross the fiddler View Post
    Funny. I tend to use Aperture Priority most of the time but some occasions require Manual (& even Shutter Priority). You could use P for professional. I shouldn't laugh because some professionals actually do use it (event, journalist type of occasions) just to make sure they get an image.
    Thanks for the thoughts guys, I use M just about for everything. I went out this arvo again, wanted to try the lens in direct sun light. Found a insect and did about 150 photos. With only one lock up. That was when I went to open the flash... it would not open, off and on power button. Flash opened, did 2 photos and the camera would not focus lock and shutter release. The flash symbol keeps flashing in the view finder.

    Shut camera down, closed flash... kept on shooting with no problems in bright day light, as long as I don't use the flash.

    So I guess it is Sigma firm ware issue.

  9. #9
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    Just an update, I have spoken to Sigma Aust and firmware updates are free. But will cost me postage if I can not get it to them in person.

    They suspect it needs a update.

    Will keep this thread updated.

  10. #10
    Arch-Σigmoid Ausphotography Regular ameerat42's Avatar
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    Sounds good.

  11. #11
    Member Ross the fiddler's Avatar
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    It's a bit more than an afternoon stroll from Mackay to Melbourne but should be worth the posting if there is no other way to get the updated FW. On the Olympus cameras there was/is the possibility to do the update of (some) Sigma lenses from the Oly site but I'm not sure about the Sigma 150 then.

  12. #12
    Arch-Σigmoid Ausphotography Regular ameerat42's Avatar
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    Ross. Wouldn't you need the lens dock for that, or did Oly provide some in-camera means?

  13. #13
    Member Ross the fiddler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ameerat42 View Post
    Ross. Wouldn't you need the lens dock for that, or did Oly provide some in-camera means?
    No, they have a joint update service & it is done through the camera. There is only one lens listed for an update on their page though. I guess the other 4/3's & M4/3's Sigma lenses haven't had any updates.

  14. #14
    Still in the Circle of Confusion Cage's Avatar
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    I didn't see that one coming Shane.

    I got one of these cheap ring flashes that works fine. By the time you send your lens by registered and insured post it wouldn't be much more. And please do insure it as I had a camera that got 'lost' in the mail and fortunately had it insured.

    http://www.ebay.com.au/sch/Flashes-/...p2045573.m1684
    Cheers
    Kev

    D600 : D7200 and too much stuff to list

  15. #15
    Arch-Σigmoid Ausphotography Regular ameerat42's Avatar
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    I sent a camera for repair, but took it to the local CR Kennedy in Syd.
    They sent it to... wherever. I don't know if it was Melb or Japan. I know
    you're in Mackay, but a call to the Bris CRK might be useful
    Scroll down a bit here: http://consumer.crkennedy.com.au/contact

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    Quote Originally Posted by ameerat42 View Post
    I sent a camera for repair, but took it to the local CR Kennedy in Syd.
    They sent it to... wherever. I don't know if it was Melb or Japan. I know
    you're in Mackay, but a call to the Bris CRK might be useful
    Scroll down a bit here: http://consumer.crkennedy.com.au/contact
    Yep ameerat that is where they have asked me to send it, and they will then courier it internally to Melbourne is what has been suggested.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Cage View Post
    I didn't see that one coming Shane.

    I got one of these cheap ring flashes that works fine. By the time you send your lens by registered and insured post it wouldn't be much more. And please do insure it as I had a camera that got 'lost' in the mail and fortunately had it insured.

    http://www.ebay.com.au/sch/Flashes-/...p2045573.m1684
    Cage I have been thinking about making my own. Not much do I own that does not have the "Shane Personal touch" Applied.

    I have been thinking about buying a LED strip and building a housing to suit the end of the Sigma lens. Then having it run off a small battery pack off one of my old LED lenser head torches to help keep it portable, as well as have a connector that would let me connect it to a larger battery mounted to the tripod / mono pod. I was going to wire in line a voltage controller (think dash lights in your car) and a on/ off switch that would let me brighten and dim the light as needed. Then also have a few different diffuser covers for different effects.

    Just thinking at the moment.

  17. #17
    Member Ross the fiddler's Avatar
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    Since the LED ring light was mentioned, I used one but only as a Focus Assist light because it just wasn't powerful enough for anything the Sigma 150 lens was aiming at.
    This was it when I used it on an Olympus E30 (with twin RC activated flashes). These days I use the lens (without all the extra lighting except one flash on the camera with diffuser) on my Olympus OM-D E-M1.


    It got a little heavy holding it up above my head to take shots of spiders in their webs trying to get focus lock as I became less & less steady (from holding it up) the longer it took to focus.

    I got some nice results all the same (at least I thought so).

    Last edited by Ross the fiddler; 25-03-2016 at 12:20pm.

  18. #18
    Still in the Circle of Confusion Cage's Avatar
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    Hi Shane,

    This is similar to the one I have and comes with a mounting ring that screws into the filter thread on the lens.

    http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/Macro-48p...sAAOSwbdpWWAel

    Works off two rechargeable batteries.

  19. #19
    Member Ross the fiddler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cage View Post
    Hi Shane,

    This is similar to the one I have and comes with a mounting ring that screws into the filter thread on the lens.

    http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/Macro-48p...sAAOSwbdpWWAel

    Works off two rechargeable batteries.
    I would look for a different supplier though with too many negative ratings.

    This is the one I have (with an iShoot label on it). http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/Godox-RIN...MAAOSwP~tW1lLq
    I had to get the 72mm ring as extra at the time so it is wise to see which ring sizes are included as sometimes they offer different sets.
    And cheaper prices of the same unit/kit.
    http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/Godox-Mac...8AAOSwPhdVUFwl
    http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/Macro-Rin...6R3jvyqtDqiYAQ

    Also, here is a 4 battery version. http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/Godox-Mac...3D401036344583
    Last edited by Ross the fiddler; 25-03-2016 at 2:09pm.

  20. #20
    Still in the Circle of Confusion Cage's Avatar
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    As Ross intimated the ring flash is not the best as is, however I figured that was because the light was not directed.

    To that end I got some aluminum foil (I think from a baking dish) and cut a strip about 75mm wide and rolled it into a cylinder, sort of like the lens hood, and attached it to the ring flash. It did the trick.

    PS: The last link in Ross' post above is the same as the one I have.
    Last edited by Cage; 25-03-2016 at 2:05pm.

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