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Sigma unveils two higher-end telephotos

A $1,000 50-150mm zoom and a $1,300 70-200mm zoom both employ higher-end optical elements and are designed for SLRs with smaller image sensors.

Sigma's new 70-200mm f/2.8 lens Sigma

Sigma announced two higher-end telephoto lenses this week for digital SLRs with smaller image sensors.

One has a range of 70mm to 200mm and the other 50mm to 150mm, but both have a large f/2.8 aperture for faster shutter speeds in lower-light conditions and a hypersonic motor for quiet focusing. The lenses are designed for Canon, Nikon, and Sigma SLR cameras.

The two lenses highlight the growing sophistication of technology for digital SLRs with sensors smaller than a frame of 35mm film. Though Canon and now Nikon sell full-frame cameras, the vast majority of models sold use less expensive smaller sensors. Using these new lenses on a full-frame camera will result in dark corners, a phenomenon called vignetting.

Sigma's new 50-150mm f/2.8 lens Sigma

The APO 50-150mm F2.8 II EX DC HSM has four super-low dispersion glass elements, a minimum focusing distance of 100cm, or 39.4 inches, and a weight of 780 grams, or 27.5 oz. According to Sigma's Japanese Web site, the lens has a price of 109,600 yen, or about $1,000, and will be available Dec. 22.

The APO 70-200mm F2.8 II EX DG MACRO HSM has two super-low dispersion elements and three extra-low dispersion elements. Its minimum focusing distance is 100cm, its minimum focusing distance 100cm, or 39.4 inches, and its weight 1370 grams, or 48.3 oz. The Japanese site puts its price at 142,900 yen, or about $1,300, with availability on December 22.