Sigma APO 70-200mm f/2.8 EX DG OS HSM

At £799, the Sigma APO 70-200mm f/2.8 EX DG OS HSM is Sigma’s lowest priced 70-200mm, but is significantly more expensive than budget options from competitors. However, it does comes with Optical Stabilisation built in (except Sony and Pentax fits), allowing users to shoot at 4 stops slower without the risk of camera shake. It also has a very wide maximum aperture of f/2.8 for faster shutter speeds in low light conditions and a shallow depth-of-field. This puts the Sigma on a par with the Tamron 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD as the best option for getting sharp handheld shots, and makes it ideal for use in low light situations. 

Sigma APO 70-200mm f/2.8 EX DG OS HSM

Sigma APO 70-200mm f/2.8 EX DG OS HSM

Focusing is fast and reasonably quiet thanks to the built-in Hyper Sonic Motor (HSM), though the minimum focusing distance is not very impressive at 140cm, so it’s not a great option for close-ups. The Sigma has a long lens barrel, and at 1430g the lens is fairly heavy (it’s more than double the weight of the Canon f/4L, for example), which is something to consider if you’re likely to carry it around for long periods. Image quality is good overall, though our studio test shots displayed significant corner softness at wider apertures at both 70mm and 200mm, though very little chromatic aberration at any aperture. It’s available for Canon, Nikon, Sigma, Sony and Pentax mounts.


The very wide maximum aperture allows for low-light shooting, but we found significant corner softness at wider apertures.


  • Street price: £690 (Secondhand price as of June 2016)
  • Maximum aperture: f/2.8
  • Minimum aperture: f/22
  • Minimum focus distance: 140cm
  • Angle-of-view: 34° - 12°
  • Diaphragm blades: 9
  • Elements/groups: 22/17
  • Stabilisation: Yes
  • Lens hood included: Yes
  • Tripod collar: Yes
  • Fits: Sigma, Canon, Nikon, Pentax, Sony
  • Filter size: 77mm
  • Length: 198mm
  • Weight: 1,430g
  • Verdict:

This review was first published in the February 2015 issue of Practical Photography - download back issues here.