Hello everyone, I am looking for a new tele zoom and I found a sigma 70-300 f/4-5.6 dg nikon af-d. I was hoping that someone could tell me if this will auto focus on my d40. And if anyone has one is a good lens. Thank you in advance.
With the Sigma 70-300 models, you have to be very explicit. There are (at least) three different models, all the same focal length and aperture, all with some sort of macro capability. And the boxes are nearly identical, too - it is easy to get the wrong one.
One of the three has an HSM motor (a focusing motor in the lens) and this one - the most recent edition - does AF on the D40. It's brand new, so there is little if any field data on it. However, the two older models were decent and pretty good (the APO model). The HSM model is apparently based on the APO, so it should be pretty good too.
_____ Brian... a bicoastal Nikonian and Team Member
My gallery is online. Comments and critique welcomed any time!
This is the lens you want, I just received mine (from Newegg). I did a lot of looking and the more expensive APO version ($219) is markedly better as far as chromatic aberrations and purple fringing than the cheaper ($139) non-APO version.
One correction to the description of this lens, it is not an HSM motor, it is the less expensive Sigma DC motor.
So, part number 5A8306 is the APO version and 5A9306 is the cheaper non- APO version.
I've had mine all of 10 minutes. I took about 4 quick hand held pics in macro mode and I'm happy for the price. Unfortunately life is just springing up here in New Hampshire so this is the most color I could get within 10 feet of my front door ...and I'm less than an amateur at this.
Has anyone purchased this lens from Newegg lately (APO or non-APO version)? Do they have the built-in motor? The model number listed looks like the older non-motorized versions, but the "manufacturer product page" lists the motorized version. If it has the motor, $95 for the non-APO version is incredible.
Wed 18-Jun-08 01:21 AM | edited Wed 18-Jun-08 01:26 AM by jongcelebes
Yes, it is D40-compatible. I have one. It's motorized but not HSM since the auto-focus speed quite slow. Another thing, I need to set above 1/200 due to my shaky hand since it isn't has anti-vibrate technology.
Well, for poor-guy like me, this Sigma really help a lot. Without breaking my piggy-bank I get my first tele-zoom lens and being couple with my D40, it's a newcomer's nirvana.
It's strange, I just bought this lens at B&H this afternoon...it was $220. It certainly says HSM in the description and the girl at SIGMA confirms this.
"Sigma's 70-300mm f/4-5.6 APO DG HSM Macro Lens is one of several tele zoom lenses. By incorporating the HSM autofocusing motor into the lens itself, it can now autofocus with all Nikon DSLR cameras (including the D40, D40x, etc.). In addition, with the motor built into the lens, focusing will be quieter and more responsive.
This lens is a compact Apochromatic tele zoom lens incorporating two Special Low Dispersion..."
I used P/N 5A8306 (I'm told it's brandy-new and you've got to verify HSM by looking at the box). Will update when it arrives.
As stated previously in this post on the 70-300 lens from sigma there are currently 4 variation of this lens the standard both with and without the motor (however motor is not HSM). Then there is the APO version both with and without the motor.
For the standard lens I normally see prices around $90 for no motor and $120-140 with the motor.
For the APO lens it is normally around $160 for no motor and $220 range with the HSM motor.
I have the APO version with motor and it is a great lens. However the front element of the lens does rotate so it can be a bit trying if you are trying to shoot with a polarizer.
Also if you get this lens be sure to read the instructions about using the Macro feature. I have heard of a few people breaking their lens because they couldn't switch between macro and regular. Later found out they had not read the instructions and tried to force the switch, oops.
Thu 19-Jun-08 03:15 AM | edited Thu 19-Jun-08 03:19 AM by fenris
well you can use any of the 4 on the D40/40X/60 but only the ones with a motor will autofocus as this body Nikon does not have a built in focus motor.
So any AF lens will work with the D40 body cameras but they will only be manual focus. For Nikon lenses look for AF-S lenses, for Sigma look for HSM or "with motor" lenses those lenses will autofocus with the D40/40X/60
Oh and if you do get this lens I would recommend coughing up the extra bucks for the APO version you will get clearer photos with it.
Thu 19-Jun-08 09:12 AM | edited Thu 19-Jun-08 09:13 AM by uberD
>As stated previously in this post on the 70-300 lens from >sigma there are currently 4 variation of this lens the >standard both with and without the motor (however motor is not >HSM). Then there is the APO version both with and without the >motor. > >For the standard lens I normally see prices around $90 for no >motor and $120-140 with the motor. > >For the APO lens it is normally around $160 for no motor and >$220 range with the HSM motor. > >I have the APO version with motor and it is a great lens. >However the front element of the lens does rotate so it can be >a bit trying if you are trying to shoot with a polarizer.
OK, thanks, Silver. I appreciate your reply. And I apologize for adding any further confusion to this discussion.
It appeared to me that there must be 4 variations of this lense. It's beyond me why they need all these nearly-identical lenses given the pricing is similar. These aren't exactly thousand dollar++ lenses.
I am going to call SIGMA and B&H this morning to confirm what I've purchased for $220 using the SIGMA part number. I do a fair amount of sports events and a slow-focuser is not what I'm looking for.
well the fun part is Sigma uses basically 2 different motor setups. They have the HSM motor setup that goes into mostly the more expensive lenses. Then they have a slower motor that is in the more budget lenses. However if you plan on shooting sports outdoors the 70-300 should work just fine. I have used this lens to shoot a herding trial recently and it worked great. If you want I can provide links to a couple of albums with pictures. If it could catch a very fast moving dog chasing livestock it should do just fine with people.
so to complicate things more for those that are not confused enough as it is. We have 4 lenses with with the same focal length. Half of those lenses have motors that will allow for autofocus in the D40. Half do not. Half of those lenses have APO, which adds an extra element in the lens to allow for a clearer picture. One of the ones with a motor is listed as "motorized" while the other is listed as HSM on some sites. HOWEVER it is not truly and HSM lens if you go to Sigmas website it is simply listed as "for Nikon" meaning it was built with the Nikon D40 in mind. Does that clear things up? No I didn't think so.
As you will notice all 4 lenses share a similar housing, the APO versions have the red ring. Oh and to make it more fun the lenses don't actually say HSM or motorized on them, its only on the box. So yeah be careful with the ones that you buy. I bought the $220 one on BH that says its HSM even though its not and it does work properly with the D40.
> Does that clear things up? No I didn't think so. >
LOL, I hear ya. It's kind of silly. I guess this is one of those things where I should worry about it when it becomes a problem.
I had the Nikon cheapie 70-300mm lense for a couple of months. I was looking at the pictures a couple of days ago and realized they were far better than I had previously given credit. OK, so it's lacking a little at the extreme end, but, all in all, it's worth every penny of the admission price.
I thought I was going to spring for the 70 - 300 VR, but just haven't gotten around to it. Then I saw this cheapie SIGMA and figured I'd test drive it for a while and see how it does.
I'm generally outside (horse shows) and my 18-200mm VR lense simply doesn't get me close enough. I need that 300mm reach.
Yeah I found the two most widely used lenses in my kit are my Sigma 18-200 and the 70-300. I actually got the 70-300 because I was finding I needed more reach than I was getting with the 18-200.
Actually I'm quite happy that Sigma is putting out these affordable lenses for the D40. Even if it does require a bit of careful shopping on our part its nice to have the wider range of lenses that will work completely with this line of Nikons.
Here are the links to the pictures, unfortunately I had to dum them down quite a bit to upload them all in a reasonable amount of time (my internet connection sucks). But at least you can get an idea of the performance of the lens, some of these dogs were moving darn fast and you can see it in some of the pictures.
What happened with Sigma HSM might make sense with a little historical perspective:
Before the days of the D40 (before the D50 actually) Nikon introduced a technology called "AF-S" which included a "silent-wave" motor (S=silent). These were offered on some mid- and high-end lenses and utilized a very fast, very quiet motor, which also offered full-time manual focus override without having to throw a switch.
Sigma came with an eqiv-tech called "HSM" or HyperSonic Motor (HS=silent). This technology was also very fast and very quiet, and included full-time manual override.
With the D50, Nikon introduced 2 low-end "AF-S" lenses that didn't use the silent wave motor, and didn't offer manual override. These used a much less powerful, slower, noisy micro motor to basically turn the screw on the classic screw-drive AF mechanism. Essentially Nikon used "AF-S" now as marketing jargon that didn't mean what it originally did. I thought it was lame marketing by Nikon at the time to water down the AF-S marque, but in hindsight they were clearly planning the low-end zoom lineup for a future camera without an in-body AF motor, and they knew it would be simple to direct buyers of that future camera to the AF-S marque.
Sigma had equiv-tech to the micromotor as well. It existed on their 80-400mm OS. They refused to label this lens "HSM" because it didn't use the hypersonic motor. IOW, Sigma was unwilling to water down the HSM label to market a lesser technology.
Enter the D40, which requires a motor in the lens in order to autofocus. For Nikkors, it was quite easy to say use "AF-S" lenses, because all the newer lenses with built-in motors were labeled AF-S regardless of having a silent wave or micromotor. For Sigma, one had to say use "HSM" lenses, and the 80-400 OS, and whatever other micromotor lenses they've introduced.
Now the popularity of the D40/D40x/D60 is causing Sigma to indtroduce micromotors into many low-end lenses, and it appears they prefer to have "HSM" remain with its original meaning - hypersonic motor. This is good for people buying lenses who want to know the tech they're buying, but it creates a problem for people marketing and buying these lenses for D40, because it's not so easy to look at the name and know if it will work. It appears online stores are adding "HSM" to the pages for these lenses to simplify the rules of thumb for shoppers, and Sigma wants HSM to remain a distinctive technology.
Hopefully sheds some light on why it's confusing. Sigma should introduce a new TLA for these lenses, like "VSM" (very sonic motor?) or "CGM" (coffee grinder motor) or something to make the shopping easier.
very good information in there! I knew some of the basics but that fills in many of the gaps. Thank you kindly for filling us all in.
I was not aware of the motor difference in the AF-S lenses from Nikon that is very good to know. I'm actually glad that Sigma is not watering down the HSM label, but I do agree they should come up with something to label the newer motor setups instead of leaving it up to the resellers to incorrectly mark them as HSM. Heck even something as simple as "IM" for internal motor would work great.
Sun 22-Jun-08 02:42 PM | edited Sun 22-Jun-08 02:43 PM by MotoMannequin
>So how can we tell if a Nikkor lens has true AF-S or LMM >(lawn-mower motor)? > >Just reading into the specs for a silent-wave motor?
Right now it's all the 18-55 & 55-200 variants which include the "LMM" and AFAIK there aren't any others. The simplest way to tell is the auto/manual focus switch on the lens. True AF-S lenses will have a "M/A" as one option and "M" as the other. The micromotor AF switch has options "A" and "M".
>>So how can we tell if a Nikkor lens has true AF-S or LMM >>(lawn-mower motor)? >> >>Just reading into the specs for a silent-wave motor? > >Right now it's all the 18-55 & 55-200 variants which >include the "LMM" and AFAIK there aren't any >others. The simplest way to tell is the auto/manual focus >switch on the lens. True AF-S lenses will have a >"M/A" as one option and "M" as the other. >The micromotor AF switch has options "A" and >"M". > >Larry - a Bay Area >Nikonian >My >Nikonians gallery>
So how are you liking the new lens over all? I mostly only get hunting with mine in 2 conditions, low light and sometimes when using the macro if there are multiple objects in the focus range.
I find that the focus is quite fast, in fact it is fast enough to capture great shots of my dogs running full tilt twords me (and the are quite fast) while keeping the images in focus as they get closer and closer.
Looks like you have a very sharp copy. That's good.
I have the non-"BIMD" version of the APO/DG lens. I got it for my wife to use on the D50, since she wanted a telephoto for wildlife and a macro for flowers, and she didn't want to spend much money. This new motorized version of the lens pushed the non-motorized price down to $150 and I find it's an outstanding lens for that price. On the D50, compared to my AF-S 70-300mm VR, focus hunts more and can sometimes be difficult to get a lock for birds in flight, but once it's locked it's fast enough to track a moving object.
>Personally I think this is a great lens for the money.
This lense is a great value. I just got back from a week of vacation and had lots of opportunity to try its features. I'm gonna say this lense looks better than the equivalent Nikon product. Performance is excellent with fast focus under bright conditions. There is more hunting than I like, but I had that same experience with the Nikon lense (mounted on a D80).
The only thing that worries me is the lense jammed in MACRO mode and I had a heck of a time un-doing it. The lense seems fine, MACRO still works as expected. I have no idea what caused the jam or how I corrected it.
>The only thing that worries me is the lense jammed in MACRO mode and I had a heck of a time un-doing it.
I thought mine jammed as well but I figured out that the focus must be pulled back all the way for it to come out of macro and back to normal. If the focus is out (ie. lens extended) it will not come out of macro...at least that's the way mine works.
D600, D90 w/MB-D80 FX Sigma 20mm f/1.8; Sigma 35mm f/1.4; Sigma 50mm f/1.4; Sigma 150mm f/2.8; Sigma 70-300mm f/4-5.6 APO; Nikon 300mm f/4 DX Sigma 10-20mm f/4-5.6; Sigma 30mm f/1.4; Nikkor 40mm f/2.8; Sigma 18-200 f/3.5-6.3; Sigma 2x TC; Kenko 1.4x TC; SB800; Giottos MT-9360 Tripod with Giottos MH-1300 Pro Series II head
You need to carefully read the instructions on this lens when using the Macro function.
To put the lens in Macro you need to have the lens out to 200-300mm. To take it out of Macro you need to rotate the focus ring to infinity (switch to manual first, then rotate). Then flip the switch back to regular.
DO NOT try and force the switch one way or another it is a very easy way to break things.
Update: The SIGMA lense has ceased to auto-focus on my Nikon cameras after just a couple short months of light use. I continue to be very pleased with this product, but this issue now has me a bit concerned about SIGMA. I hope it turns out to be something minor.
Lense returned to SIGMA today.
Anybody else have reliability issues with this lense?
I havn't had any problems with my Sigma 18-200 or the 70-300 APO. I'm actually using them very hard and often (almost every day). In fact I just shot a job with my 70-300 where in the course of a weekend I took over 6000 shots, it was an average of over 2000 shots a day. The camera and lens got dirty, wet at one point then covered, tossed around, baked in hot sun and generally not babied.
Before returning the lens to Sigma did you check your contacts to make sure they were clean?
ferris, thanks for your reply. I did scrutinize things as best as I could. I don't change lenses often and didn't notice anything wrong. All my Nikon lenses continue to auto-focus as expected on both cameras.
that's correct, these is not an HSM lense contrary to some info posted by the re-sellers. However, the lense focusing is quik and accurate most of the time. It has not been a drawback for me when shooting sports events.
The cheapest telephoto lens with VR is the Nikkor 55-200mm VR which runs a little over $200. The next is the Nikkor 70-300mm VR which is closer to $450. Both are excellent lenses for the price. If you plan to shoot birds/wildlife than skip the 200mm lens since it won't be long enough. 300mm won't really be long enough but unless you have $1000++ to spend then the 70-300mm is a good starting point.
Be aware if you purchase either of these, that non-VR versions of both lenses exist. Be sure you get the "VR" lens.
I'm pretty happy with my 55-200mm VR, but it would be nice if it had a little more length to it. Went to the zoo yesterday and forgot to turn the VR on at first. I don't think I would want a longer lens with out VR.
>You need to carefully read the instructions on this lens when >using the Macro function. > >To put the lens in Macro you need to have the lens out to >200-300mm. >To take it out of Macro you need to rotate the focus ring to >infinity (switch to manual first, then rotate). Then flip the >switch back to regular. > >DO NOT try and force the switch one way or another it is a >very easy way to break things.
Have you ever tried just re focusing it at the sky or distances thats how I get it out of macro mode
I am interested in buying a Sigma 70-300 and looked for it on Marktplaats.nl (Dutch version of eBay). There is one for sale there but the guy does not know if it is one with a built-in motor and he doesn't have the original package anymore. Is there anyway to tell from these photos he took from the lens if it is one with built-in motor?
It's hard to say from the photos on the site. Ask the seller: a) how many electrical contacts does it have? If it's the BIM version it should have 10 (well mine does anyway) b) does it have the "screwdriver" drive for bodies with AF motor in them? Mine doesn't
The pictures on the site look very similar to my lens but not exactly the same.
You are correct, that lens does *not* have a built-in motor, and will not AF on D40 or D60. The clues: 5 electrical contacts (instead of 10) and it has the "screwdriver" coupling, which is the dot at about 10:00 on the lens mount in that picture.
I agree with Larry's analysis - this is not a BIM lens.
These lenses aren't expensive new (typically £130 in the UK) so I wouldn't even contemplate a used one via eBay (or similar site). Having said that, the price has fair rocketed up since I bought mine in December 2008 - 25% in 7 months!
I have been looking all over at Dutch internet shops for this lens. The cheapest I can find is €167 (without shipping cost of about €7 I think). It would almost seem I would be better off buying it from an internet store from the UK. What store do you recommend? Of course I would need a reliable one, since I can not test the lens before it gets send.
I can recommend UK Optics (www.ukoptics.co.uk) which is where I bought mine. At the time they were waiting for a new batch of stock to arrive from Sigma and either called or emailed me every day or so to update me on progress. They currently have then in stock for £129.
You can also rely on the likes of Jessops or Jacobs - they have good reputations here in the UK.
Ah yes, but that is the non APO version. They have the APO version for £179, which is actually a little bit more expensive than I can get it for at some Dutch online stores. Thank you for the recommendation anyway. Sorry that I didn't make myself clear that I wanted the APO version.