Sigma 300mm F4 Macro APO A-mount lens review by Kiklop

reviewer#130 date: Oct-4-2005
sharpness: 3.5
color: 3
build: 4
distortion: 5
flare control: 4
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; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I used to own this lens
compared to:- KM 80-200/2.8 G HS APO
price paid:320 USD (used)
positive:- Solid build quality
- Minimum focus distance
- Overall image quality
- Flare control
- Very cheep on the second hand market
negative:- AF/MF switch (ring) .. I hate it
- AF on the slow side, not that good in dim light situations
comment:I bought this lens only recently second handed. Not that I needed a 300mm lens that badly, but it was a good offer (here on dyxum forums) and I couldn't resist. At this moment this is the only non Minolta lens I own.
The lens build is good, with an practical slip on hood and removable tripod collar. What I don't like is the AF/MF switch which is pretty redundant on 7D (we have AF/MF button under our finger on 7D body and that switch is causing additional step in switching from auto to manual mode)
Lens weight is appropriate for an 300/4 lens and if not for that AF/MF thing I would be more satisfied with the overall lens build.
The lens is decent when AF is concerned. I had slower lenses than that, but I'm used to faster AF speed from my other lenses. However, the lens is very reliable in AF which was one of my biggest doubt prior the purchase.
A bit on a warm side, the lens is sharp enough. Wide open, isn't anything spectacular, but still very usable. I haven't noticed any picture degradation caused by CA or flare which is a real bonus considering that the lens is a bit older model.
Oh, I love the minimum focusing distance which provide additional flexibility.
Since the lens is no more in production, it can be found only on the second market. And if you need a prime of that range, and you are tight on budget, I can only recommend considering this lens. It's far away from a disappointment.

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 17
  • sharpness: 4.29
  • color: 4.29
  • build: 4.35
  • distortion: 4.47
  • flare control: 4.29
  • overall: 4.34 - Home of the alpha system photographer
In memory of Cameron Hill - brettania