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Thread: Lenses... what's the difference?

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    Lenses... what's the difference?

    This is going to sound silly, I'm sure but I have a question in regards to some lenses I've been looking at...

    Unfortunately I can't afford a Nikon 24-70 so I've been looking for alternatives... but there are a couple of Sigma lenses that come close... 24-70 2.8, the both of them. Now... I've seen two versions - one is a macro.

    The specific lenses:

    Sigma 24-70mm f/2.8 EX DG MACRO Lens and;
    Sigma 24-70mm f/2.8 EX DG HSM Lens

    The macro is significantly cheaper than the HSM.

    Can someone please explain to me what the difference is? Possibly in blonde-girl speak?
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    Ausphotography Veteran rwg717's Avatar
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    Erin, I have been trying for 2 days to get opinion on the Canon mount version of the Sigma 18-125mm lens for much the same reason. If your Nikon 24-70 is anything like the Canon version of this lens (and I have one) they are "massive" and heavy and as you point out very expensive.

    I just wanted something better than the kit lens which came with the semi-entry level Canon body which I bought recently. In short I don't want another 24-70mm Canon lens (the one I have is brilliant but wildly expensive) but you are in the position of wanting the performance of the Nikon 24-70 out of a third party lens, sadly the big Nikon will win on nearly all aspects when reviewed (as I found out in my comparitive research).

    http://www.the-digital-picture.com/R...s-Reviews.aspx

    Try the link above to find out why. If you navigate around the site you will see what this guy thinks about all of the offerings, I found some of the reviews a little depressing but as they say: "you can't make a silk purse out of a sow's ear" and this is true of camera lenses, you pay big $$$$, you get quality
    Richard
    Last edited by rwg717; 07-07-2010 at 10:55pm.
    I've been wrong before!! Happy to have constructive criticism though.Gear used Canon 50D, 7D & 5DMkII plus expensive things hanging off their fronts and of course a "nifty fifty".

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    Well I can't explain that. Here are the two lenses on the Sigma website for those that can interpret the tech specs:
    http://www.sigmaphoto.com/shop/24-70...dg-macro-sigma
    http://www.sigmaphoto.com/shop/24-70...x-dg-hsm-sigma

    There are differences, in that the HSM has the faster quieter focus mechanism. It also focuses inside the barrel meaning that the lens doesn't extend to focus.

    To be honest though, I have no idea why the price difference (one is double the other!). I'm sure someone can tell us?
    Mic

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    Ausphotography Site Sponsor/Advertiser DAdeGroot's Avatar
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    Ok putting it simply, the HSM version uses much more expensive glass in the lens construction to reduce chromatic aberrations and distortion.

    The Macro version and don't get confused by that designation, it's not a 1:1 macro lens, has a slower focussing motor, the barrel extends when zooming, and the image quality will be not quite as sharp as the the HSM version (see the MTF charts on the links posted by etherial).
    Dave

    http://www.degrootphotography.com.au/
    Canon EOS 1D MkIV | Canon EOS 5D MkII | Canon EOS 30D | Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM | Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM | Canon EF 17-40mm f/4L USM | Canon EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM | Canon EF 35mm f/1.4L USM | Canon TS-E 17mm f/4L & some non-L lenses.

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    Quote Originally Posted by rwg717 View Post

    Try the link above to find out why. If you navigate around the site you will see what this guy thinks about all of the offerings, I found some of the reviews a little depressing but as they say: "you can't make a silk purse out of a sow's ear" and this is true of camera lenses, you pay big $$$$, you get quality
    Richard
    Thanks dude, I know that some of the reviews have been a bit harsh but having said that, I've got a Sigma 80-200 2.8 and it's sublime whereas many people have knocked it. I so I know that reviews can be hit and miss.

    However... I was actually after if anyone knew what the difference was between the two Sigma lenses that I pointed out. I'm confused re the Macro and HSM wording and the price difference between those two lenses specfically... why why why?

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    Quote Originally Posted by DAdeGroot View Post
    Ok putting it simply, the HSM version uses much more expensive glass in the lens construction to reduce chromatic aberrations and distortion.

    The Macro version and don't get confused by that designation, it's not a 1:1 macro lens, has a slower focussing motor, the barrel extends when zooming, and the image quality will be not quite as sharp as the the HSM version (see the MTF charts on the links posted by etherial).
    Ah huh! Gotcha. Thank you muchly.

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    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    Yeah, I think the HSM is the newer of the two versions and better in many respects.(because it newer, and in general terms newer lens designs are generally better.. especially true with third party offerings).

    Another lens to consider as well, is a second hand version of the now old and not as much loved(as the 24-70) 28-70/2.8 AF-S.
    I've seen a few now on fleabay for a paltry $1K.. but they come and go, and you're timing must be spot on. These are a great old lens. The only real problem is the 'formidable girth' of the beast!
    And it's called the beast for very good reason.

    I think in this type of lens(well the way I use them anyhow), AF-S(HSM) is a bit of a must have feature. If you shoot portraits in a dynamic environment and want manual over ride of the focus point in an on demand manner, then AF-S is the way to go!
    (note that Sigma's HSM works the same way as AF-S).

    Order of preference would have to be:
    Nikon 28-70/2.8(if you can find one at a decent price, as they can still command a stupidly high premium!)
    Siggy 24-70/2.8 HSM
    Siggy 24-70/2.8 Macro.(don't underestimate the usefulness of close focusing. Macro doesn't always have to be about 1:1 reproduction ratios.)
    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


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    Member pcbermagui's Avatar
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    Did anyone notice that the Macro is superseded and the recommend considering the 24-70mm F2.8 IF EX DG HSM. Could be that the macro has a run-out price. Even so the new lens as DadeGroot says is way superior technically. Just did a bit of diging for you as this used to be my business and thought if price is a problem it's worth considering the tamron lens on this linkhttp://www.digitalcamerawarehouse.com.au/prod4170.htm Since I've retired and moved to exclusively digital I've got most of my gear from this mob and there brilliant. No I don't have shares it wouldent be as robust as the genuine Canon but at about a third of the price who could argue.
    Cheers pcbermagui
    PS just noticed the date of your post so this may be useless info - happy new year, enjoying your work.
    pcbermagui - a camera between my ears
    A560, 18-70(kit), Tamron SP90 2.8 Macro, Sony 70-300G, PS CS5 -My photos are at pcbermagui.zenfolio.com

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