Summary: This lens really surprised me. I have other SIGMA lens and they normally are very good, so my expectation was set to a very good lens. However, this lens is a super performer. If you visit my truetoad site, Portfolio (macro and flowers) you will see a few examples. In the macro section you will find a "morning Life" image taken hand held in natural sunlight. In the flower section "my easter flower collection" you will find some examples.
Summary: This is a good lens for the price. The only reason not to buy this lens is if you are waiting for Nikon to refresh its 200mm Macro lens. That one is about the same price as this Sigma without the vibration reduction and updated lens coatings in this one. For more information see [...
Summary: This lens is super sharp. The internal stabilization works very well allowing available light shots handheld. It is very rugged and much larger and heavier than my previous macro lens (Sigma 150 f2.8). It focuses fairly fast but it is not a not a match to the other lens that I frequently use for macro photography: a Nikon 300 f4 with a 1.4 X teleconverter.
Summary: I have been a professional photographer for over 40 years. I now have only the best equipment available. Before this lens I had the Sigma 150/2.8 Macro OS lens. Great, but this one is better. The 150 OS only gives you about 1.5 to 2 stops of help with the OS. This 180 has a full 4 stops of help - at any distance. Very fast AF though, to be honest, I only use MF. I have owned about 15 different macro lenses over the years.
Summary: This lens is great for insects since you can keep your distance a bit. It is also good for other macro shots as well since you don't have to get as close. Saves your knees and back since you don't have to get right on top of your subject and the extra distance helps get more light on your subject which can be a challenge in macro.
Sigma 180mm f/2.8 APO Macro EX DG OS HSM Lens - For Nikon
Trevis Thomas, Amazon
20 November 2012
Summary: I can confirm that this is the Sigma 180mm f/2.8 APO Macro EX DG OS HSM Lens - For Nikon. Ordered it today. Haven't played with it much yet. I'll try to add a more helpful review once i do but for now immediate reactions are: Large. Heavy. AF is amazingly fast. Optical stabilization seems very impressive. Max DOF at 1:1 is F/5 (I searched all over for this info but couldn't find it anywhere) bokeh looks pretty nice.
Summary: Fast, sharp and accurate! The image stabilizer is fantastic. My first one did have a defect but Adorama and Amazon got a new one to me within two days! I think it is the best fast 180 macro you can buy. Look at my facebook to see some images.
Summary: I purchased this as an update for the previous model which has done a lot of hard work and served me well. But it must be regarded as a special use lens. If you want something to photograph flowers, particularly handheld, or for dead insects under studio conditions you may well be better off with a smaller and cheaper lens which will also be handy for other general purpose photography.