Sigma AF 18-200mm f/3.5-6.3 DC OS (Canon) - Review / Test Report
Lens Reviews - Canon EOS (APS-C)

Introduction

At the time Nikon released the AF-S 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 VR they did not only generate a hype in the Nikon community - they also produced an itch among Canon users. Canon may offer lots of IS lenses but so far they were not willing to offer a cure for the desire for a long range IS consumer-grade zoom lens. It's not that they can't do it - Canon released the full-format EF 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6 USM L IS a couple of years prior of the Nikon - but for whatever reason they seem to reluctant to provide a solution dedicated to APS-C DSLRs. Anyway, Sigma is obviously more than happy to fill this gap with the new Sigma AF 18-200mm f/3.5-6.3 DC OS. It is their 2nd zoom lens with an OS (Optical Stabilizer) and also their 2nd APS-C standard zoom lens with a 11x zoom ratio. In classic terms it offers a field-of-view equivalent to about 29-320mm (1.6x crop).

The build quality of the Sigma is surprisingly good. Unlike e.g. the Tamron 18-250mm it is a comparatively big and massive lens - probably also a side effect of the quality materials. In absolute terms it is naturally still small package when taking the extreme zoom range into account. The lens shows no significant wobbling despite the duo-cam design - the two inner lens tubes extend when zooming towards the long end of the zoom range. The broad, rubberized zoom ring operates a bit stiff whereas the focus ring feels pretty smooth. The tested sample did not suffer from zoom creeping (which may develop over time) but Sigma implemented a transport lock (18mm only) just in case. The front element does not rotate so using an polarizer remains easily possible.

The Sigma uses a conventional AF micro-motor which works quite fast and reasonably accurate. I'm glad to report that the OS (Optical Stabilizer) works as advertised - it can give you an extra potential equivalent to about 3 f-stops. There's only a single mode OS-switch (on/off) but the lens is able to detect panning (object tracking) which is different compared to Canon's IS implementation.

Specifications
Equiv. focal length29-320 mm (full format equivalent)
Equiv. aperturef/5.6-f/10 (full format equivalent, in terms of depth-of-field)
Optical construction18 elements in 13 groups inc. 1x SLD and 3x aspherical elements
Number of aperture blades7
min. focus distance0.45 m (max. magnification ratio ~1:3.9)
Dimensions79x100 mm
Weight610 g
Filter size72 mm (non-rotating)
Hoodsupplied, petal-shaped, snap-on type
Other featuresOS (Optical Stabilizer)




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