After a long time of thinking about it I bought the Sigma 50-150mm f/2.8 APO EX DC OS HSM last week. This is a short review of my experience with it. To make it short: It is one hell of a lens!
Let’s start with the formals. The Sigma 50-150 OS comes with a bag and strap, a tripod collar and a quite large lens hood. The lens weighs 1270 g (without tripod collar, according to the kitchen scales) which is just about 200 g less than it’s full format 70-200 mm f/2.8 siblings from Canon and Sigma.
For an APS-C lens that is quite a lot. However I find it very nice to handhold attached to the 7D with battery grip.
The optical stabilizer works extremely well, much better than the IS of the Canon 300mm/2.8 IS mkI. What can be irritating is the very obvious knocking noise it makes when it turns on or off that is shared with the Canon.
The AF is by far not the fastest I have seen. It is silent, precise and fairly fast but by far not as quick as the Canon 300/2.8 or 85/1.8. It is sufficient for real-world use I would say.
The most outstanding feature about the Sigma 50-150mm f/2.8 OS is definitively it’s optical performance. The sharpness across the frame is simply stunning at all focal lengths and probably leaves lot of prime lenses behind. There is no need to stop down for additional sharpness. CA, LoCA, distortion are all nothing to worry about. But see for yourself… all files are converted from RAW, brightness adjusted, no additional sharpening
7D – ISO200 – 1/160 s – f/2.8 – 150 mm (click for 100% view)
7D – ISO200 – 1/1000 s – f/2.8 – 150 mm
A showcase for the OS system – shot without support
7D – ISO1600 – 1/8 s – f/2.8 – 82 mm
The lens is compatible with both Sigma and Canon teleconverters. I have the Sigma 1.4x APO and Canon 2x II converters and only did a few test shots. As far as I can report the Canon 2x does give even better results compared to the Sigma 1.4.
A 100% crop with the lens wide open (click on the picture).
7D – ISO200 – 1/800 s – f/5.6 – 300 mm
Cropped but not 100%
7D – ISO400 – 1/1600 s – f/5.6 – 300 mm
So, should you also get this lens? Well, if you tend to walk around with a bunch of primes in the 50-150mm range and can get along with a f/2.8 lens then this is the ultimate tool for you. Sports, theater, concerts, travel, weddings, portraits – that is where this lens will shine on your APS-C camera. For me it is definitively a keeper. Stand by for more pictures or comment if you need any additional info.