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SportsShooter.com: Member Message Board

Sigma 120-300 2.8 Sports
Dave Rubel, Photographer
Colonia | NJ | USA | Posted: 8:56 PM on 06.12.16
->> Thinking of getting this lens but I like to hand hold instead of Monopod. Anyone hand hold this lens?

Comments welcome
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Wally Nell, Photographer
CLEVELAND | OH | USA | Posted: 9:38 PM on 06.12.16
->> I handhold a 300 f2.8 all the time. In my 30+ years of shooting, I have had it on a monopod 3 or 4 times... It really depends what you will use it for. For what I shoot, it has worked fine handheld... I don't know about the 120-300, but I am sure it can't be heavier than the prime 300...
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Stanley Leary, Photographer, Photo Editor
Roswell | GA | | Posted: 10:01 PM on 06.12.16
->> I handhold for basketball but monopod for football
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Marvin Gentry, Photographer
Birmingham | AL | USA | Posted: 11:02 PM on 06.12.16
->> I do the same as Stanley
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Doug Pizac, Photographer
Sandy | UT | USA | Posted: 3:12 PM on 06.13.16
->> Before spending $3,400 I would strongly suggest you either have Sigma send you a loaner lens for you to check out or rent one from borrowlenses.com or some other outlet first. Then play with it and by all means do bench tests to see if it gives you the results you demand.

Also keep in mind that zooms are not as sharp as prime lenses because of all the extra glass inside. According to Sigma's website their lens has 23 elements in 18 groups. Nikon's 300mm f/2.8 has 11 elements in 8 groups and Canon's has 16 in 12.

Do you already have a 70-200mm f/2.8 zoom? If so, then why duplicate nearly half the zoom range (120-200)?

As to asking us for advice, what may work great for one person may be terrible for you. Thus the need to do your own testing on something this expensive. That's my advice.
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Michael Okoniewski, Photographer
Syracuse | NY | USA | Posted: 5:19 PM on 06.13.16
->> I had the first two versions of this glass for Canon. It was a compromise zoom for sure. The 2nd version was much sharper. But it was NOT sharp out of the box. I had to send it to Sigma and it came back sweet. You can hand hold for basketball & hockey, which I did. The bad on this lens is that if you knock it over while the OS (image stabilization) is on, the focus motors/gears went toast! $500-600 to fix, if I remember correctly. There is a 3rd or maybe even 4th generation out there. and like Doug said, rent the newest copy for a test spin.
And the 1.4 ext is not well mated to this glass. My stuff looked soft in low light conditions. Again, the 2nd gen models.

I sold my Sigma & went to a second Canon 70-200 2.8 with a newer 1.4 ext for that extra reach. IMO, you can get away with a looser crop with today's high resolution cameras.

I do own a 400 2.8 for open field sports.
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Bryan Woolston, Photographer
Baltimore | MD | USA | Posted: 7:40 PM on 06.13.16
->> I have the nikon version of this lens. LOVE IT. It is my long carry. I don't even carry the 70-200 anymore. The 24-70vr and 120-300 makes a great combination for news work. It is fast, sharp, and yes heavy (Much heavier than 300mm primes... but, I carry it on the left should on most days, and have yet to fall over...
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Stanley Leary, Photographer, Photo Editor
Roswell | GA | | Posted: 8:43 PM on 06.13.16
->> Even DXOMark rates this pretty high compared to the Nikon and Canon latest versions.

Look here to see the comparison to Nikon 200-400 and Canon 200-400

http://www.dxomark.com/Lenses/Compare/Side-by-side/Sigma-120-300mm-F28-DG-O...
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Stanley Leary, Photographer, Photo Editor
Roswell | GA | | Posted: 9:09 AM on 06.14.16
->> The latest version I should have clarified is awesome. All of the newest Sigma Art series lenses are also rated sharper or on par with their Canon and Nikon counterparts.
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Patrick Murphy-Racey, Photographer
Knoxville | TN | USA | Posted: 11:08 AM on 06.14.16
->> the lens is very heavy, especially as compared to the canikon 300mm f/2.8's. The weight is noticable though the smaller form factor makes up for some of this. hand holding would take a toll even for a basketball game with a lot of timeouts... it's a beast in terms of weight but I have no complaints about sharpness.
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David Seelig, Photographer
Hailey | ID | USA | Posted: 2:20 PM on 06.21.16
->> The new model is a good lens but I agree with Patrick not a good candidate for hand holding
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Chuck Steenburgh, Photographer
Lexington | VA | USA | Posted: 6:52 AM on 06.23.16
->> Sigma 120-300/f2.8 DG OS HSM - 6.5 lbs
Nikon 300/f2.8 ED VR II - 6.4 lbs
Canon 300/f2.8L IS II USM - 5.3 lbs
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David Seelig, Photographer
Hailey | ID | USA | Posted: 6:54 PM on 06.23.16
->> FOr what ever reason I was quite use to handholding the version one canon 10 0unces heavoer then the new one the Sigma feels much heavier I think they do not include the tripod adpater weight on it and it is how you attach the strap to the lens so it comes out weighing more. I would not want to carry this lens by the straps on the camera body. so Chucks wieght may be technically accurate but then agian they are not.
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David Seelig, Photographer
Hailey | ID | USA | Posted: 3:43 PM on 06.24.16
->> Actually I just saw a spec saying 7.47 pounds
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Butch Owens, Photographer, Photo Editor
Murrieta | CA | US | Posted: 11:32 PM on 09.22.16
->> I have the Sigma 120-300 2.8 Sport and do hand hold it but it makes the Canon 300 2.8 IS seem light when I switch to it. The Canon definitely seems to focus quicker. The Sigma's ability to go from 120-300 is really nice. Both have their benefits.
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David Rosenblum, Photographer
Jacksonville Beach | Fl | USA | Posted: 3:35 PM on 09.26.16
->> I had this lens for a while. It's not super heavy, but you'd be pretty sore if you handheld for a full game. I believe it's close to about 10 lbs. Significantly lighter than Canon's 300 2.8, which I've handheld a full college football game without any trouble.
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Jim Davidson, Photographer, Photo Editor
Columbus | OH | USA | Posted: 10:40 AM on 10.21.16
->> I have the latest version of this lens and love it! It's not as sharp as the Canon 300mm F2.8 prime, but it compares pretty well with the 70-200 F2.8. I hand-hold it for everything but video. I shoot interviews with it once a week. I also had the original version of the lens and it was not sharp. They are much better now.
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Stanley Leary, Photographer, Photo Editor
Roswell | GA | | Posted: 10:30 AM on 10.23.16
->> "It's not as sharp as the Canon 300mm F2.8 prime"

My question is did you calibrate it using the Sigma Docking Station and SIGMA Optimization Pro software to adjust the focus?

https://www.sigmaphoto.com/sigma-usb-dock

I found that once I calibrated the lens it was even sharper. I understand in the manufacturing process there needs to be a little tolerance and that you can correct for the manufacturing process of camera and lens tolerance.

Here is blog I wrote showing me calibrating the lens

http://blog.stanleyleary.com/2013/08/sports-photographythe-day-before-game....

This is my review of the lens

http://blog.stanleyleary.com/2013/09/sigma-120-300mm-28-dg-os-hsm-s-lens.ht...
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Thread Title: Sigma 120-300 2.8 Sports
Thread Started By: Dave Rubel
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