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Jul 29

Maybe I do like taking pictures of birds?


Hello, my 1st post here. Hope I'm in the right spot for a gear question. I never was really interested in bird photography.. however,.. I was kayaking last night here in a burb' of Vancouver BC and was rather obsessed about slowly paddling my way over to the many birds and seeing what I could capture. I just had my basic tough rugged olympus camera vs my canon 80d with 18-250 sigma. So, just looking ahead at seeing what lens would be preferred with my 80d crop if I decide to up it a notch. did some digging on others with 80d, and this came up on amazon.ca:


Any thoughts on cheapest but decent quality for this kind of thing? we also have the annual event nearby here of thousands of eagles so like to use for that & more too.


Thanks, Dave

Jul 29

Hi David, both Sigma and Tamron have a 150-600mm lens. I've used the Tamron, but not the Sigma. My understanding is that both a fairly comparable in terms of quality and price. The 150-600mm range is excellent for bird photography, and it is a very good range to photograph everything from large birds to small songbirds. Both lenses are a bit on the heavy side, although not as heavy as most "super telephoto" lenses 400mm or longer. Because you don't have a large maximum aperture such as f/2.8 or f/4 found with more expensive telephoto lenses, the 150-600mm lenses require using higher ISOs, which can be a bit problematic when working in low light.


Just as an example, here is a photo I took with the Tamron 150-600mm lens. At 600mm, I was able to zoom in quite close to this lioness feeding on a wildebeest she had just killed. In my opinion, the lens handled itself quite well.


Hope this helps!


Thanks Ian for quick feedback and tips. wow photo. those eyes... and the story it tells.

Not that I'm anyone, but since you asked I just want to put out I've also used the Tamron 150-600 (the original, not the G2) and it's works fine for me. It is on the slow side with the 5.6-6.3 aperture, but you can't beat the price if that's the major factor for you (it was for me). Plus with the 80D, it'll kind of be like a 240-960mm, which is awesome, but it's also a full frame lens so if you 'step up' to a full frame camera, it'll still work, which was another bonus for me. Anyway just wanted to throw that out there for you, hope it helps in your decision making. P.S. I'm sure the Sigma is equally good, I just haven't used it.

Have you considered renting the lens to try it out? Depending on where you live, you might have access to a store that will do that for you. Sometimes actually being able to try it out and play around can solidify your decision to purchase (or on the flip side, can help you decide to spend that $ on a different lens).

Thanks Jeremey & Katrina.. great feedback. I'll look into idea of renting 1st. super idea.

I have the Sigma 150-600 sport (Nikon), and my husband has the same lens in the Contemporary version, which is much lighter and no sig difference in sharpness, as far as I can tell. The Sigma can be focus tuned to your camera at different focal lengths, and that is not difficult, and makes a huge difference in sharpness. If I had to do it over again I would buy the Contemporary version for the smaller size and weight, but I do love the sport version. It's just not something that I would carry around. The original Tamron wasn't as sharp as the Sigma, but I'm not sure about the new one. Good luck and have fun!

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