Sigma 60-600mm - Performance from a calibration view point

Sigma 60-600mm review

 

Sigma recently updated one of their most popular telephoto zooms, the Sigma 60-600mm. This is a direct replacement for the 150-600mm F5-6.3 DG OS HSM Contemporary and is the most popular lens we see for calibration here at Cameracal with as many as 6-8 per week coming through the studio doors. In the 3 years we have been calibrating this lens using their USB dock the combo of camera / lens has changed significantly from being exclusively used with what was the best wildlife /sport / aviation combo at the time, the Canon 7D Mk2 to more recently the Nikon D500.
Normally it takes a little while until we get to see these new products on our test rig, and we were itching to see how this new 10x zoom compared in term of features and consistency.

What were we expecting?

  • Well, to start with greater consistency as in not having to dial in to the dock such large correction numbers (auto focus micro adjustment values) especially at 600mm.
  • The ability to calibrate at additional focal lengths as in 300mm and 500mm.
  • The lack of “wobble” at 400mm.
  • Greater and/or additional lens functionality that can be applied to C1 and C2 settings.
  • But most importantly not having to convert your calculated AFMA correction figure to their system used in Sigma USB dock software So all in all a big ask, how did this new superzoom deliver?

So, all in all a big ask. So how did this new superzoom deliver? – Read on for our initial evaluation.

 

 

Our first surprise….

On opening the Focus settings menu (this is where you add the calculated AFMA values for focal lengths) we were surprised to see the lack of focal lengths supported, in this case a huge gap between the 200mm and 600mm
focal lengths. As a side-by-side comparison, we have included a screen shot from the 150-600mm.

So with the 60-600mm there is no support for 400mm, let alone 300mm or 500mm.

Sigma 60-600mm Review

 

 

Our second surprise...

was the lack of additional functionality with regards the C1 and C2 lens settings, these were the same for both lenses, Sigma perhaps missed a trick here. 

We would have liked to have seen additional stabilisation in the lens, past the claimed 4 stops, to rival the best “in body” stabilisation systems, but we can always dream…

 

Sigma 60-600mm review - AF Speed Setting

Sigma 60-600mm Review - oS Settings

The one improvement....

we were pleased to see though was the fact that with this new lens, unlike others in the Sigma range, it was not necessary to convert the calculated values from Reikan’s Focal software / Canon’s af micro adjustment / Nikon’s AF Fine Tune menu before entering the numbers into the Focus settings menu*

 

We also found that this particular example needed less in terms of correction, especially at the 600mm end than the 150-600’s that we see. This of course could be a one off and a more accurate assessment can only be made over time and with more examples.

Verdict

To be brutally frank we were disappointed. Obviously we approach a review from a different angle to most. Some decent examples a linked below. It offers a phenomenal focal range for the price and this should not be undervalued. However when Sigma hold approximately a third of the lens market they should really have pushed harder with this one. Less focal point that can be calibrated is really a step back. So whilst we do see many 150-600mm lenses needing calibration 

*Calculated AFMA values must be converted in order to maximise lens front / back focus correction when using the Sigma dock.

Other Performance Reviews

Although the lens has been out a while now we have listed some lens reviews below for those that want to read on the performance of the lens: