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Lens review

Sigma S 150-600 mm f/5-6.3 DG OS HSM

28 October 2014
Arkadiusz Olech

8. Vignetting

On the small sensor of the Canon 50D the vignetting is not a big problem; you can notice it easily while glancing at photos below.

Sigma S 150-600 mm f/5-6.3 DG OS HSM - Vignetting


At 150 mm focal length and the maximum relative aperture the light fall-off in the frame corners amounts to 19% (−0.61 EV). On stopping down the aperture to f/5.6 the vignetting is reduced to 14% (−0.43 EV) and it disappears almost completely by f/8.0, reaching just 5% (−0.14 EV).

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At 300 mm the situation is even better – at the maximum relative aperture the vignetting is 14% (-0.45 EV). After applying f/8.0 that aberration vanishes almost completely, being reduced to 5% (−0.15 EV).

The combination of 450 mm focal length and f/6.3 aperture means the brightness loss in the frame corners of 18% (−0.56 EV). By f/8.0 the vignetting level decreases to just 9% (−0.28 EV). At the maximum focal length there are the biggest problems as the vignetting goes up as high as 25% (−0.85 EV). On stopping down to f/8.0 that aberration decreases to 16% (−0.51 EV), and by f/11 it amounts to just 7% (−0.22 EV).

There are more serious vignetting-related problems on full frame and photos below show it very clearly.

Sigma S 150-600 mm f/5-6.3 DG OS HSM - Vignetting


Already at the minimum focal length this aberration is keenly felt because it reaches 45% (−1.75 EV) with the lens wide open. By f/5.6 it decreases to 41% (−1.5 EV) and by f/8.0 to 19% (−0.61 EV). Only by f/11 you can say the problem disappears almost completely (7% and −0.20 EV).

At 300 mm the lens fares even worse – with the aperture fully open you has to take into account the loss of 48% of light in the frame corners (-1.91 EV). By f/8.0 the losses of photons are still noticeable, amounting to 29% (−0.99 EV). Even by f/11 the vignetting makes itself felt, being on a level of 21% (−0.67 EV); only by f/16 it decreases to 14% (-0.44 EV).

Similar results can be observed at 450 mm, where, by f/6.3 the vignetting is 47% (−1.85 EV) and by f/8.0 it can decrease to 33% (−1.15 EV). By f/11 and f/16 the brightness loss in the frame corners amounts to, respectively, 26% (−0.86 EV) and 18% (−0.59 EV).

The most serious situation, though, can be seen at 600 mm focal length where, at the maximum relative aperture, the vignetting levels get to 51% (−2.05 EV). On stopping down the lens to f/8.0 that aberration still remains distinct, amounting to 39% (−1.45 EV). Also by f/11 and f/16 you don’t have any problems with spotting the vignetting as its levels, measured by us, were respectively 34% (−1.21 EV) and 26% (−0.88 EV).

I admit the results of the Sigma in this category are surprising. We thought that a lens noticeably bigger and heavier than the Tamron 150-600 mm would be able to fare better and the situation is quite opposite. Here the Sigma constructors didn’t exactly distinguished themselves.

Sigma S 150-600 mm f/5-6.3 DG OS HSM - Vignetting

Sigma S 150-600 mm f/5-6.3 DG OS HSM - Vignetting

Sigma S 150-600 mm f/5-6.3 DG OS HSM - Vignetting

Sigma S 150-600 mm f/5-6.3 DG OS HSM - Vignetting