Well, that was… unexpected? In a highly unconventional move, Sigma has announced not one, but two versions of their 150-600mm lens: one being given the ‘Sports’ designation and one the ‘Contemporary.’ Both lenses offer the same exact 150-600mm reach and same exact F/5-6.3 aperture range.
The difference is in the build of the two lenses. The Sports version of the lens will feature a more enhanced optical design, with professional grade optics, and a better build quality aimed at handling the wear and tear of a professional shooter’s needs. The Contemporary version is a smaller – and likely quite a bit cheaper – version of the Sports lens in a more -albeit slightly- compact and portable design.
As you can see in the images, the Sports version features a nice big focus ring as well as zoom ring, while the contemporary version features what appears to be a larger zoom ring and small focus ring. Beyond that, from what I can make out in the images, they don’t appear to be that different looking (besides the obvious tripod collar difference).
The original rumors about this lens make sense, as originally, it was thought to be Contemporary and then they changed it to Sport. The rumors were right – in both cases. Sigma just pulled a fast one on us and did something unexpected.
At this point, no pricing or availability is known for either version of the lens. But I think it is safe to say the Contemporary version will likely compete on price with the Tamron 150-600 in that $1,000 range or a little more. While the Sports version may come in around $1800-1900 and compete more closely with Canon’s 100-400mm in terms of price and durability/build quality.
Sigma 150-600mm F/5-6.3 Sports Specs
- Canon EF/Nikon F/Sigma Mounts (Contemporary will also come in Sony mount)
- Aperture Range: f/5-6.3 to 22
- Two FLD and Three SLD Elements (Contemporary Only has 1 FLD Element)
- Hyper Sonic Motor AF System
- Optical Stabilizer with Accelerometer
- Zoom Lock & Manual Override Switches
- Minimum Focus Distance: 102.4″
- Splash and Dust Proof Mount
- Lens Hood & Rotatable Tripod Collar (Contemporary Collar Not Rotatable)
- Compatible with Sigma USB Dock
What are your thoughts on these two announcements from Sigma? Do you like the strategy of making a lower priced version for amateurs/hobbyists and a more premium version for pros? Leave a comment below!