Hands on With the Sigma 100-400mm F5-6.3 DG DN OS Contemporary How does the new super telephoto zoom from Sigma compares to the competition?

Earlier today Sigma introduced a new super-zoom telephoto lens for Sony E-mount and Sigma/Panasonic and Leica L mount cameras – the 100-400mm F5-6.3 DG DN OS Contemporary. This compact light lens is the first of its kind for Sigma for mirrorless cameras and it uses a new optical formula designed specifically for these types of short flange distance cameras.

The build quality of the 100-400mm F5-6.3 DG DN OS Contemporary according to the first review of this lens published today (see Dustin Abbott review above) is good, comprising of both metal and plastic and it comes without a leg but you can buy one if you like although the lens itself is rather compact at 197mm (7.8”) and rather light at 1,135g (40oz). The rings seem to work nicely and are well dampened. The zoom ring can either be turned or you can [psh/pull the end of it and it was designed to work in this way.

The compact Sigma 100-400mm F5-6.3 DG DN OS Contemporary in the hand

The lens has several buttons and switches including AF/MF, focus limiter (full, 6m-infinity and up to 6m), AFL programable button, 3 mode image stabilization, and a zoom lock (to lock the lens at 100mm for travel).

The lens has 22 elements in 16 groups including 1 FLD element and 4 SLD elements, It has a stepping motor that seems to work very well, it is silent and fast and fairly accurate with Eye-AF tracking support.

Sharpness even on an A7R III 42MP seems very good at all focal lengths (it might be a good idea to close down a little to f/8 at 400mm but other than that you should expect very high-quality results with the lens). Even on an APS-C camera, the lens performed fairly well according to Christopher Frost (see review below).

As for pricing, the lens will be available starting in July 2020 for $950 (the collar will add a little over $100).

The new lens on the tiny Sigma FP camera

Besides the lens, Sigma also introduced two teleconverters – Sigma Teleconverter TC-1411 and TC-2011 (these are 1.4x and 2x teleconverters) and they are only available for L-mount (we are trying to understand why Sigma was unable to create E-mount versions of those as well). Interestingly Sigma published the MTF chart of the new lens with the teleconverters showing that optical performance is also not effected which is very impressive (AF should also work well according to the company despite the 1 and 2 stop decrease in light gathering with these extenders.

As for pricing, the TC-1411 will sell for $400 starting in July 2020 and the TC2011 will sell for $420 around the same time.

Finally, Sigma mentioned that it is working on a new USB Dock UD-11 USB-C type dock for L-mount and it will be releasing 3 of its popular existing APS-C DN lenses for L-mount (nice if you want to shoot video or have some old Leica’s TL2 and CL mirrorless cameras) – these will be the 16mm, 30mm, and 56mm F1.4 DC DN Contemporary lenses.

Christopher Frost early look at the Sigma 100-400mm F5-6.3 DG DN OS

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Sigma posted a very long and unusual online press event (and to us at least also pretty hilarious one – in a good way), while most of these events are extremely serious and heavy, Sigma decided to take a lighter approach while still keeping in a lot of technical information.

Sigma’s unusual online press event video

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Iddo Genuth
Iddo Genuth is the founder and chief editor of LensVid.com. He has been a technology reporter working for international publications since the late 1990's and covering photography since 2009. Iddo is also a co-founder of a production company specializing in commercial food and product visual content.

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