Make sure you test it out
June 19, 2014
I ordered this lens from two different distributors. There was a monumental difference between the two. Obviously it didn't have anything to do with who sold it. They didn't manufacture it. The poor lens was soft all around. Seemed to have a focusing issue.
Here's what you need to look for and expect with this lens. The better one, which I'm keeping, is unbelievably sharp when cropped to full size. It is hard to tell the difference between F5.6 and F8. That is a great feature because most lenses, including primes, need to be stopped down to obtain good clarity. It seems to nail the focus more consistently at 300mm than at 400mm. It is also "slightly" sharper at 300mm. I cropped the 300mm pics to the same size as the 400mm and 7/10 times they actually looked better. Now don't be mistaken. The 400mm shots were still as great. But some of the 300mm shots were just incredible. I cropped them as much as my computer allowed and they were still sharp. btw- the bokeh is creamy smooth on the good lens and completely harsh and jagged on the bad one. Yes, it's a little disappointing there can be that much of a difference between the lenses. One more exciting bit of info. My camera is the A58. This lens can only be better on the A99. Can't speak for the A77 since the image quality on the A58 is actually a little better per the online reviews.
The purpose of this review is to let you know to expect greatness in this lens. If it doesn't "wow" you then return it and get another one. When you get one that performs the way it's supposed to, you will be smiling every day you use it. All of the other negatives such as the weight and flimsy hood will mean nothing when you see the pictures.... Read More