8 out of 10 points and recommendedWell built, better balanced than the 50-500mm, OS works great. Best bang for the buck. Lens strap attached to the tripod mount rocks. It allows the camera/lens to hang at your hip, but ready to spring into action at a moment notice. Still has EX glass inWeight, OS could work quicker, Sigma finish has a reputation of wearing or flaking off.
Well, I finally joined the "club" and purchased a used 150-500mm. My serial number started with 103, which from all the research I did, indicated that it was a newer copy, and less likely to have any issues.reviewed January 2nd, 2016 (purchased for $888)
That, and talking with the previous owner, convinced me to buy. I use it on my D300, and have previously owned a 50-500 Sigma.
Today I went out and tested the BigOS, taking the exact same shots at 500mm as I did with the Bigma. Same settings exactly.
I put the pictures(jpegs), side by side on my 30" LCD monitor, at a resolution of 2560X1600, and zoomed both to identical size. I could not tell ANY difference between the two, and both were acceptably sharp.
I've only had the lens for a day, and just did backyard testing, but it appears to be a winner. Everything the OP said, I agree with. I've owned the same lenses he has, and he was dead on.
OS takes about 3/4 of a second to lock on, and is a bit noisy. On the Nikon 70-300VR, it took about 1/4 of a second. On the Nikon, I never could hear the VR, so I was never sure if it was on or not, and had to keep checking the switch. Don't have that problem with the BigOS. But, the noise I'm talking about is almost like a wisper. If you were at an event, you would never hear it.
I also compared, side by side, my Tokina 300mm F2.8 lens, which is incredibly sharp, with the BigOS. And again, at F9(sweet spot?), and 300mm, the two pictures were identical in every way, including sharpness!!
This lens is better balanced than the Bigma, and that is on a D300 with grip. As far as price Vs. performance, I give this lens a 10. It has it's place in my bag, and serves a very useful purpose.
It's not a prime lens, and doesn't pretend to be, but for 90% of what I do, it works just fine.
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