Sigma 180 APOmm F5.6 UC Macro A-mount lens reviews

reviews found: 10   
reviewer#41980 date: Jan-3-2018
sharpness: 5
color: 4
build: 4
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 4.2
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:sony 50mm f2.8 macro
price paid:25 euro
positive:sharp
very cheap
build ok
negative:only usable with tripod
only 1:2 macro
comment:got it 2nd hand on a film camera VERY cheap. it was all sticky. cleaned it with alcohol and works fine now. came with simple rubber hood. very sharp for the price. only usable 'in hand' at very good light and with steady hand.
reviewer#11862 date: Jun-10-2014
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 5
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4.7
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Tamron 60mm F2 macro
Soligor 100mm F3.2 macro
Minolta 100-300mm F4.5-5.6 APO
price paid:150 EUR used
positive:Sharp wide open
Lightweight, small for 180mm macro
Nice bokeh
Cheap for a 180mm macro
negative:My copy backfocuses slightly on A58, but for macro, it's best to manual focus anyway
Only 1:2 macro, there was no adapter
The hood that came with my copy attaches to the focusing ring and is quite stiff, so handling is a bit delicate
comment:I am not sure why I like it so much, given the backfocus on my body, but yeah, it's just a nice piece of kit.
Sharp wide open, just the right macro distance even for shy insects, small, light, cheap.
F5.6 does not bother me, at macro distances at this focal length the DOF is already thin.
Although the lens shows as 100mm F2.8 in EXIF, the in body IS seems to work as well (taken sharp shots at 1/20 sec).
Planning to buy the A77II body, so hope the AF fine tuning fixes the backfocus. With that, it would be one hell of a lens.
Update: It's indeed wonderful on A77II. Backfocus corrected with microadjust. Still sharp at f5.6 and razor sharp at f8. A steal.
reviewer#11277 date: Jul-29-2013
sharpness: 4.5
color: 4
build: 4
distortion: 5
flare control: 2
overall: 3.9
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Tamron 90 macro
Sigma 300 f4 APO MACRO
Sigma 50 macro
price paid:150 EUR
positive:Sharpness
Lightweight
Bokeh
negative:Low contrast
f5.6 (f4 would have been much better)
1:2 (not really important)
No (bayonet) hood (MUST)
comment:There's a good & cheap (25 eur) life-size adapter from Sigma (Ø 52mm), relatively hard to find. Mine was new (unopened) and does not detract brightness or sharpness, making it an amazing 1:1 lens.

It isn't RAZOR sharp, but "decent"

Also bought a metal hood (5 eur) which is absolutely a MUST to prevent flares.

The only thing I don't like about this lens is its maximum brightness, too low IMO. I'd rather a f4. In any case, for the price you can not ask for more. One of the best lenses (value/price) to mount A, despite its age. A really good way to begin in MACRO photography without investing too much money.

reviewer#10050 date: Mar-23-2012
sharpness: 5
color: 4
build: 4
distortion: 5
flare control: 3
overall: 4.2
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Sigma 24 f2.8 macro
Sigma 90 f2.8 macro
Minolta 100-200 f4.5
price paid:150 USD
positive:Sharp, even wide open!
no "Sigmacolor"
small & light for a 180mm lens
Internal focus
silly cheap
very smooth manual focus
excellent boke
really sharp!
negative:very shallow depth of focus (esp. since min. aperture is only an f22)
flare can happen even when shooting away from a light source
slow to focus in dim light
can't find a matching bayonet hood anywhere :P
comment:My copy came in an opened box, but was likely old stock, not a scuff or even any dust on it.

Get ready to be amazed and disappointed with this lens, sometimes in the same frame... Used within its comfort zone the images are impressive, step outside of that area and it shows its weaknesses.

Having used shorter macro lenses only, I was not prepared for the vanishingly thin depth of focus, however in situations where there isn't too much stray light the sharpness is spectacular. If there *is* much glare in frame you'll see it in images as contrast reduction, in many cases across the whole frame. Thankfully the sharpness doesn't seem to diminish much when fully stopped down, so getting small objects to be in focus is still possible as long as you have enough light and the out of focus parts of the image are smooth and hash-free unlike the 90mm f2.8 Sigma.

Color is very close to completely neutral, but lacks that extra life that older Minolta glass usually displays, it also lacks the "punch" that some of the "Sigmacolor" prone lenses from this design period in Sigma's history have. All in all a very decent performance, just lacking a tiny bit in contrast and saturation.

With a steady hand and plenty of light this is a fantastic macro lens that allows you to keep your distance, while still getting up close to the subject. Distant subjects are still treated to decent sharpness, but not the razor clarity of subjects that are close in...it still outperforms many respected telephoto zoom lenses at this distance, but any non-macro prime this soft at infinity would be a poor performer IMO.
reviewer#8982 date: May-1-2011
sharpness: 4.5
color: 4
build: 4
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4.3
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:
missing
price paid:EUR 170,00 (used)
positive:Price
Sharpness
Focal length
negative:Weak on contrast
comment:I bought thhis lens together with Hoya close up filter set to improve the lack of 1:1 ratio but I would rather prefer to use extension tubes.
Focal length is really good on either FF and APS-C
Max aperture f5,6 is not an isue as for macro photography I normally use f11/f16 as preferred diaphragms
reviewer#8183 date: Nov-4-2010
sharpness: 5
color: 4
build: 4
distortion: 5
flare control: 3
overall: 4.2
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Beercan
100-300APO
price paid:€150,-
positive:Range
Color
Bokeh
negative:Focus speed
reduced contrast in some cases
comment:I've used this lens for Oktoberfest 2010 and I really like it. It's much more versatile then I expected, partly because of the close-focus capability. Took some real nice pictures, some I will post in the sample thread.

I like the bokeh, it's quite friendly.
Flare is shown in reduced contrast, not in flare spots.
This lens is optimized for shorter distances, up to 10m, beyond that it's less good.
Never tried the 1:1 adapter, as I'm not into Macro. For some people it might be important that this is a 1:2 Macro.
reviewer#3222 date: Jan-30-2008
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 4
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4.5
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Sigma 70-300

price paid:225 USD (new)
positive:Cheap
Compact Size
Build Quality
negative:f5.6
Slow AF

comment:Picked up this lens new from a camera shop because I was looking for a longer focal length prime lens with macro capabilities. So far I have been happy with the results. The only real down size is AF issues. It hunts and can not lock focus much of the time unless there is a lot of light. I found that I could get much better results by using it in MF.
reviewer#2811 date: Oct-1-2007
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 4
distortion: 5
flare control: 3
overall: 4.4
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:cosina 100 f3.5 macro
Sigma 50mm f2.8 macro
price paid:€ 75 (used)
positive:Phew, what a sharp performer.
old (thus cheap), leightweight, very accurate focus, and sharp from 5.6 (that`s full open!)
it has a lifesize adapter to get to 1:1
And a very nice feature: you can keep your distance from insects
negative:5.6 so it needs light, focussing is slow
not for handhold shot`s, you need a tripod (at least I do)
with the lifesizeadapter you need to stop down to at least f8 to avoid vignetting
comment:
missing
reviewer#2301 date: May-11-2007
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 4
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
overall: 4.6
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Min 50 macro
Min 100 macro
Tammie 90 f2.5 macro
Tammie 90 f2.8 macro
price paid:US$180
positive:Light weight
Excellent wide open
Vivid (but not OTT) colour
Good for candid portraits
negative:Nothing much at all as long as you are not expecting a speed demon (aperture terms)
It's 1:2
comment:An excellent performer for what it is.
It felt strange walking back instead of forward when taking a macro.
Very easy to frame because you are not stuck in the undergrowth.
Have had no flare problems but will get a hood if I can.
reviewer#199 date: Nov-1-2005
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 4
distortion: 4
flare control: 1
overall: 3.8
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP
ownership:I have experience with this lens
compared to:
missing
price paid:
missing
positive:Very sharp lens, not too heavy
negative:Absolutely no flare control at all
Small maximum aperture
comment:Very little color fringing for a lens this old.
Note that this is 1:2 and not 1:1 macro
reviews found: 10   

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 10
  • sharpness: 4.80
  • color: 4.50
  • build: 4.10
  • distortion: 4.80
  • flare control: 3.20
  • overall: 4.28

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