Sigma 180mm f/2.8 EX DG OS HSM APO Macro

Lens Reviews / Sigma Lenses i Lab tested

Most people tend to think of image stabilization as being mainly for telephoto lenses. While it's true that their longer focal lengths tend to magnify the effects of camera shake, image stabilization can provde a very useful assist at wider angle focal lengths as well; anyone who's ever tried to blur the image of a waterfall, while keeping the surrounding landsape tack-sharp knows exactly what I'm talking about.

The ''1/focal length'' rule of thumb holds true with this lens when image stabilization is not activated, with a shutter speed of 1/250 providing consistently sharp images. When image stabilization is activated we see some interesting results. We note around three and a half stops of stabilization with OS activated: consistently sharp images were obtained at speeds as slow as 1/30 of a second, and many excellent shots were obtained at 1/15 of a second. That's pretty remarkable performance for such a long lens.

Mouse over this chart to show results with IS activated.

IS systems tend to provide more benefit to less-stable shooters than very steady ones, so most users will see the same or greater amounts of shake reduction as we measured here. You can read more about our IS test methodology here: SLRgear IS Test Methodology, v2.