Anybody got the *old* Sigma 70-200 DG (non-macro, non-OS)

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by anbeck, Jan 6, 2014.

  1. Hello there,
    I am just switching from Canon to Nikon and got myself a D7000. However, I do not have any lenses yet. I have an interesting offer to buy a used old version of the Sigma 70-200 2.8. It is the second version (the first DG HSM version, the one right before the first 'Macro').
    It is so hard to differentiate which lens people are talking about when you look for information on the internet. So now I've decided to ask you whether anybody used this lens (or is still using it), and what you thought/think of it.
    I want to use the lens for concert photography, that is, under relatively difficult lighting. Would I regret getting this lens?
    Thanks a lot in advance,
  2. André
    If it is a local seller I would suggest you give it a try. I do not have any experience with the lens you are asking about but I do have the Sigma 120-300 f/2.8 from the same era. So if you can try the lens on your camera and are happy with the focus speed and IQ then I would tell you to go for it.
  3. I tried the Sigma versus a Nikon AF-D 80-200 f/2.8, and ended up buying the latter, mainly because at a similar price, I found them performing very similar, but the Nikon zooms the right way around. However, coming from Canon you may find the zoomring of a Sigma in fact turns the right way ;-)
    My impression was short, and just a few testshots. AF speed was good, build quality seemed fine, the copy I tested was sharp enough (on a D80, though, so quite a few megapixels less). If the price is right, and you can test the lens on your own camera, then I doubt you'd seriously regret this lens.
  4. I considered the Nikon 80-200, but I've read a lot about backfocus problems specifically on the D7000. I don't know what to make of those internet-rumors, but it definitely made me consider the Sigma as a priority. But the more I read on the internet (and look at pictures), the less I am sure about preferring the DG, the HSM or the HSM II (well, whatever their specific exact names are).
    Another alternative would be just to rent a real good lens (such as the Nikon 70-200) for the concerts I want to photograph. But within a few weeks I'd pay enough in rent to get a used Sigma (whichever non-OS version).
    I wish I just had a Leica with a 35 or 50mm lens :D
  5. Backfocus issues can be solved, and you're right to take internet rumors with a large pinch of salt. The problem with the 80-200 is something several on these forums noticed, though, including myself. On short focussing distances (roughly below 8 metres), at 200mm, it will just misfocus completely. Other than that, it's fine.
    But if you prefer 35 or 50mm then a 70-200 is too large anyway ;-) If you do not have it yet, the Nikon 35mm f/1.8DX is a sweet lens for little money. Definitely worth it.
  6. I was just referring to overwhelming choice for a zoom in that range. There are 4 Sigma lenses and 4 Nikon lenses (two 70-200 and the older and newer 80-200), a Tamron or two, plus several older lenses to consider. Even though I have excluded the OS Sigma and the Nikon 70-200s for the time being, the rest of them seems like Scylla and Charybdis... In any other range I need (maybe a 35 and 50 mm prime, as well as a 17-50 zoom) the choice is self-evident, at least if you know the limit of your budget.
    Another issue with the 80-200 is the lack of AF-S (at least with the older version). I have no experience at all with cameras powering the AF, and particularly not with the D7000. And again, it's hard to read something into online-discussions AF speed. Maybe some people who consider it fast enough come from some kit lens, while others who consider it super slow just compare it to the latest Nikon.
    As far as the 80-200 is concerned, I am not really willing to take the risk and come home from a concert to see that I missed a couple of great shots, because the AF was either too slow or out of focus.
    So I think for me it will be one of the Sigma lenses, hoping that I can get the fast focus spot on. And hoping, that a "soft" shot or one with chromatic aberration is easier to rescue than one which is simply out of focus.
    I just have to make up my mind over the DG and the two "macros" - although in the end it will probably be fate that will decide, if I get a first offer that I cannot resist.
    Unless, of course, somebody can exlude one of these lenses for my concert purposes, such as the first DG - hence my original question.
  7. Hi, Andre,
    I have this lens and I used it for some time. It works well on my D200 and D300s. AF is very fast and silent. Some pictures for the comparison you can see here They were made 7 years ago but perhaps they can be of some help to you.
    Regards, Miha.
  8. Re focus The 80-200 f2.8 Nikkor two-ring focuses slightly faster than older discontinued lenses but not as fast as newer lenses with their own motors. At 10m-infinity even the older ones were fast enough to follow moving athletes. When you get to more like 5m then focus speed is more taxed. The 80-200 is a professional lens with a precise gearing and not like some kit zoom. I don't think you will have problems for your elected application. If you did then the lens would be notorious for its slowness like the previous Tamron 70-200 and people online wouldn't recommended it. Any problems are more likely to be due to the failings of the D7000 in low light which are well attested.

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