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Great All Purpose Canon Lens Wanted - Sigma18-250 a Sure Winner

Updated on September 21, 2014

Great Walk Around Lens for Your Canon DSLR

Imagine yourself on the vacation of your dreams, when suddenly you spot the photo opportunity of a lifetime. You reach for Canon Rebel T3i and get ready to snap the "Photo of the Year", only to realize that you have the wrong lens attached to the camera. You didn't have a Sigma 18-250mm lens on your camera, right?

Here's a news flash: You don't actually need a Canon Rebel T3i. You can grab your Canon Rebel T3 (a really cheap DSLR camera) to slap on your Sigma 18-250 lens. Or, if you have a Nikon Digital SLR of any variation, the Sigma all-purpose lens is available for those too. In fact, Sigma makes lenses for most major digital SLR cameras.

Civil War Re-enactor taken with Sigma 18-250mm lens
Civil War Re-enactor taken with Sigma 18-250mm lens

Sigma 18-250 Review

A Great Camera Deserves a Great All-purpose Lens

Sigma 18-250 could be the best walk around lens for the money. Two fantastic pluses for this wonderful walk around lens are: 1.) its range and the 2.)image quality of the photos taken with it.

While it is not going to give the same image quality as a Canon L-prime lens, the actual quality is really impressive. You must gauge it against its peers, like the Tamron AF 18-270mm f/3.5-6.3, which is also getting fairly good marks from reviewers.

The photo at the right was taken by the author at a Civil War cannon event. The lens is very versatile, in that it can take wide-angle landscape shots, mid-range portraits like this one, or capture wildlife in its natural habitats.

But check out these comments about the Sigma 18-250 - they are copied from the first page of reviews from B&H Photo sales page:

  • This is not your mama's lens! (mine)
  • Heavy, but lighter than 2 lenses - 5 stars
  • Great Lens - 5 stars
  • It's okay - 3 stars
  • small package--big performer - 5 stars
  • Nice Easy To Use Lense..... - 3 stars
  • Love this lens! - 5 stars
  • Great lens great buy greAT price - 5 stars
  • I'm Lovin' it! - 4 stars
  • I Love This Lens - 5 stars
  • Frustration Ended - 5 stars
  • Nice all around lens - 4 stars
  • Simply Amazing! - 5 stars
  • Great lens! Reasonable cost - 5 stars
  • Solid, Quality Lens - 4 stars
  • Very Good--for the price - 4 stars
  • The Lens I Will Wear Out! - 5 stars
  • Excellent Value All Around Performer - 5 stars
  • Versatility and Vibration Compensation - 5 stars
  • Good value for the money - 4 stars
  • LOVE This Lens SO WORTH THE MONEY!!!!! - 5 stars

My personal favorite from the list is Frustration ended!!! I can say a hearty Amen to that.

Great Vacation Lens

When you are on vacation, you want to be able to capture every photo op without needing to change lenses on your DSLR. The Sigma 18-250 lens affords you that possibility. You can get the wide angle shots using the 18mm setting, then quickly rotate the lens barrel to get the close-up shot using the 250mm setting. All this happens within seconds.

Another super advantage to using a single vacation lens is that you don't need all the extra weight and bulk of your camera bag slowing you down, and wearing you down. Just stick an extra battery and storage card in your pocket or purse and you are ready for photo action.

I Buy Most Of My Gear From Amazon

Sigma 18-250mm f3.5-6.3 DC MACRO OS HSM for Canon Digital SLR Cameras
Sigma 18-250mm f3.5-6.3 DC MACRO OS HSM for Canon Digital SLR Cameras

I love the range and image quality I get from this lens. Sigma is a trusted name in the camera lens marketplace.


I got my Sigma 18-250mm F3.5-6.3 DC OS HSM Zoom Lens a few days ago, but it has been really raining here.

So I did a really crude lens test. I have what I consider to be some excellent lenses in my arsenal. My normal walk around lens is a Tamron 28-75 f2.8. I bought this lens when I got my first Digital Rebel 300D, and it has proven to be all that I hoped for. It gives me wonderful photos.

I also have a Canon 70-200mm f/4 L that I got for doing telephoto work. I am just an amateur, and I can't afford the really expensive glass that professional photographers use, but these lenses, as I said, are very good.

So, I took some pictures in my house using all three lenses, hand-held, in a dimly lit room. As I mentioned, this is a crude test, but the results surprised me. I was hoping that the new Sigma lens would do as well as the other two, but the new lens was head and shoulders better than either of the other lenses as you can see from the image on the right.

I attribute the success of the new Sigma lens to the Optical Stabilization, which neither of the other lenses has. These photos were taken at 1/4 second exposure time.. a fairly impossible shutter speed for me to avoid blurry pictures due to my inability to hold the camera steady.

Showing the Versatility of the Sigma 18-250 Lens

A few shots taken with the new Sigma 18-250mm Lens

The Sigma 18-250 Portrait Lens
Self portrait - taken inside using a mirror. Image was then cropped and flipped in photoshop, but that was the only editing.

The Sigma 18-250 Super-zoom Lens
Female Cardinal. This was taken through a double pane window in fairly low light. The bird was about 4 feet away.

This is taken in bright sunlight with telephoto set to about 80mm. Notice the pleasing colors and saturation.

The Sigma 18-250mm as a Wide Angle Lens

A photo taken inside in low light hand held showing that the Optical Stabilization works very well.

The Sigma 18-250 as a Macro Lens

Here's a little test to see if I could get macro quality images. I think the Sigma 18-250 passed the test with flying colors. This photo was taken hand held from about a foot away from the busy little bee.

This one was taken using a very slow shutter speed of 1/10 sec to get the silky waterfall. Focal length was 18mm to get the widest shot possible. Camera was resting on a railing to prevent camera shake.

Pileated Woodpecker - Note to self - Cross off #1 on Bucket List

Pileated Woodpecker with Sigma 18-250mm lens
Pileated Woodpecker with Sigma 18-250mm lens

Pileated Woodpeckers do not hang out right outside my kitchen window even though i have done everything I know to get them there.

I have been coaxing birds with seeds and suet for nearly 7 years, and this morning (February 17) I saw this one on my suet feeder. After dining for a bit, it flew to the tree.

Talk about heart-stopping! I could barely hold the camera I was so excited.

Anyway, the technical stuff goes like this:

  • Camera: Canon Rebel T4i
  • Lens: Sigma 18-250mm for Canon
  • Focal Length: 168mm
  • Aperture: F/6.3
  • ISO: 800

Portraits are ideal with a zoom lens
Portraits are ideal with a zoom lens

Sigma 18-250mm Zoom Lens For Portraits

You can take portraits with just about any lens in your arsenal, but the pros usually use a lens that is 85mm or so. The Sigma 18-250mm has such a wide range of focal lengths, you can use 85mm or 135mm with no problem.

Here are a few photos taken with the Sigma lens at 50mm, which is also great when using a "crop-frame" camera like the Canon Rebel T3i.

Full body shots, no problem!

But you can also get up close with no distortion.

Yes, we like!

Let Me Know You Were Here

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    • JuliaAnnPayne profile image

      JuliaAnnPayne 5 years ago

      nice lens

    • Wayne Rasku profile image

      Wayne Rasku 5 years ago

      @JoshK47: My pleasure Josh. I still love this Sigma lens. It is so useful for just about any situation.

    • profile image

      JoshK47 5 years ago

      Excellent info! Thanks for sharing!

    • smithlights profile image

      smithlights 5 years ago

      Great, the last thing I need is another "must have" lens :) I have three, which I love, but I like the idea of this one. Hmmm... Great review. Thanks for the ideas!

    • hotbrain profile image

      hotbrain 6 years ago from Tacoma, WA

      I'm on a Memorial Day Bus Trip and found your very informative lens! Squid Angel blessed!

    • sukkran trichy profile image

      sukkran trichy 6 years ago from Trichy/Tamil Nadu

      thanks for useful info and beautiful pics. ~blessed~