Bald eagle portrait against sky reflections, Alaska. Nikon D4 Sigma 120-300mm f/2.8 EX DG OS APO HSM at 300mm, 1/250 sec, f/11.0 ISO 500 in Manual mode, handheld.
Sigma 120-300mm f/2.8 first impressions
Over the last few days I have finally had a chance to use the 120-300 in the field. Yesterday I had a great opportunity for a portrait when an eagle landed very close while I was photographing another eagle. The light was very soft and diffused and the soft blue background is actually blue sky reflecting from a pool of water. I made images at 100 and 300 and even a few with the 1.4x, all handheld. All of the images had tons of detail and look very sharp. The full size images look great at 100% magnification.
So far are that the lens performance is very good. The autofocus performance, even with a 1.4x, will keep up with eagles in flight and sharpness also seems to be very good. I will make sure I shoot the lens wide open and one stop down next time I shoot with the lens. For the image above I used f/11 for additional depth of field since I was so close to the subject, I could barely frame the entire bird at 100mm!
The lens I used for this image is actually a new second sample, the first was somehow damaged in traveling, but this lens works just fine.
Over the next couple of days I hope to get to make a few images in more direct light to really see what kind of detail the lens can resolve. Also I will put more time with this lens photographing eagles in flight.
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