If you have spent any time at all reading my previous posts, you know that I’m really big into saving money on photography gear. There’s the old saying, “You get what you pay for,” but that doesn’t always apply.
I’ve talked several times about how buying new glass for your DSLR is a much better investment than upgrading your camera body. But high-quality glass comes at a price. That said, Nikon and Canon-brand glass comes at an even higher price. Not that I have anything against Nikon or Canon lenses. They are simply very pricey for the higher-end lenses in their respective product lines.
If you’re in the market for a new lens or two and you’re short on cash, consider buying a third-party lens instead. You will still be getting a much better lens than what came with your DSLR (in most cases) and you won’t have to sell one of your carbon-based, voice-activated light stands to be able to afford it. For example, the two Sigma lenses pictured above (images courtesy of Sigma USA) can maintain an aperture of f 2.8 throughout their zoom range and both have Sigma’s HSM (Hyper Sonic Motor) so they can autofocus on the D40, D40x, and D60.
The first of the two is the Sigma APO 70-200mm F2.8 II EX DG MACRO HSM lens. It features a min. focus distance of 39.4 inches which makes it a great macro lens too! It has gotten great reviews and the best part of all… you can pick one up for $799.00 from B&H Photo! Nikon’s 70-200mm f 2.8 VR will cost you $1,624.00!!! The Sigma lens lacks Sigmas’s Optical Stabilization feature, but for the sake of saving $800.00 I could care less. I can put that money towards another lens. Besides, if I’m shooting in such conditions that an aperture of f 2.8 still won’t help, I’m gonna be on a tripod anyway.
The second lens is the Sigma 18-50mm f2.8 EX DC Macro HSM. I have heard nothing but great things about it and photographers say that it’s a super-sharp lens on a Nikon. (I haven’t really researched it on a Canon camera because I shoot Nikon.) This lens features a minimum focusing distance of 7.9 inches! You can pick one up for $499.00 from B&H Photo.
Now, I’m not trying to sell you on Sigma lenses. I plan on purchasing both of these myself, but by all means if you have to have a Nikon and can afford the price, go for it! There are many working pros that shoot with Sigma cameras and lenses and absolutely love them. I love Nikon bodies, and that’s probably what I will stick with. For glass, I’m more than willing to give Sigma a shot and save a lot of money in the process. When I do pick them up, I’ll be sure to post a full review of each lens for your reading pleasure.
Happy Wednesday and I hope you didn’t get fooled by David Hobby’s April Fool’s Day gag over at Strobist. Have a great day! 🙂