Fake Sigma lenses?? (15mm fisheye and 50mm macro)

Discussion in 'Adapted Lenses' started by shan564, Jan 2, 2012.

  1. shan564

    shan564 Mu-43 Rookie

    Dec 30, 2011
    I went to a random local camera shop today in a large tourist area. From what I'd read online, this place was notorious for selling somewhat-overpriced stuff from random Chinese brands to tourists who don't know any better. But when I went in, they also had a really nice selection of old SLR lenses from Canon/Nikon/Olympus/Pentax/Minolta/Sigma/Tamron/Vivitar/etc, not just cheap Chinese stuff. Most of them had hefty price tags on them (although the prices weren't astronomical - they were somewhat in line with what you might expect for those sorts of lenses).

    After looking through a handful, I couldn't resist the temptation to pick up an old 50mm f/1.4 Yashinon at $50... I was looking for a fast prime lens, and he had a few to choose from in that price range. While looking at other lenses, I came across a 15mm Sigma f/2.8 fisheye and a 50mm Sigma f/2.8 macro, both with a Minolta MF mount (as luck would have it, I'd just ordered an MD-to-mu43 adapter the night before). The price stickers on them were about in line with the usual street prices of those lenses, but when I asked him how much they'd cost, he quoted too-good-to-be-true prices on both of them (less than half the price on the sticker). He said that he's had the lenses sitting in stock for several years, so now he's just trying to move them along. The lenses were in mint condition but were in old-looking boxes, so I'm sure that they were probably new-old-stock like he said.

    Sounded like a great deal, so I figured I'll come back when my Minolta mount comes in so that I can try it out and see how well those lenses work with the mu43 format.

    A while later, I wandered into another random camera shop that happened to have the same two lenses on their shelf, except with a Canon mount. When I asked the guy for the price, he gave numbers that were very similar to the other shop (but about $20-30 higher).

    So now I'm suddenly suspicious. Both of these guys are selling the same two lenses at amazing blowout prices. And there was also a third shop on the same street that had a suspiciously similar inventory, but I didn't look too closely there. So it might just be that the shops are all working together and just set similar prices, but the situation just seems fishy (pun intended).

    So is there any chance that this may be some sort of scam? The lenses looked nice, and I'm sure they take great pictures... and they're being sold by a shop that's been in that place for many years. I'm trying to think of an explanation... fake? stolen? But it seems unlikely that a store owner would risk getting shut down and going to jail just to make a small profit. Or maybe there are no shenanigans and I'm just reading too deeply into it? Maybe I should just buy the lens and shut up?


    Oh, and I've been reading this forum pretty constantly since I got my E-PL1, but this is my first post... hope you guys find it interesting.
  2. zerotiu

    zerotiu Mu-43 Veteran

    Sep 13, 2011
    I don't think lenses can be faked. If someone can, wow he is great! I'm talking about real lens, the one that has a few optic elements in it. Because here I've seen a fake lensbaby with crappy result.

    If it is cheap or it is stolen, don't bother..as long it takes great pictures :). Sometimes it's better to pretend not to know something but it's just me
  3. shan564

    shan564 Mu-43 Rookie

    Dec 30, 2011
    Well, I was thinking that it might be something that came out of a Chinese lens factory with the Sigma name imprinted onto it. But you're probably right... I should jut buy it and shut up.

    I'd still care if it was stolen, but it seems unreasonable to think that a shop like this would risk selling a stolen lens...
  4. zerotiu

    zerotiu Mu-43 Veteran

    Sep 13, 2011
    If it is old, I think image color and quality is obvious if you compare it with result from new lens? and please, share the results here :D
  5. shnitz

    shnitz Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Aug 25, 2011
    Austin, TX
    There is essentially no counterfeit lens market. I'd wager that you have the real thing; an old Sigma lens for a dead mount isn't what people would waste their time counterfeiting anyway.
  6. Luke

    Luke Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jul 30, 2010
    Milwaukee, WI
    Real Name:
    +1 to what shnitz said. Now let's see photos!
  7. G1 User

    G1 User Mu-43 Veteran

    Jul 20, 2010
    I used to work in a camera shop in the late 80's. And, we had a lot of used stuff...
    We would, every few months, put some odd ball of OLD stock at really low price (like 20% above what paid or valued it in a trade) to move it. Because we had newer used stock that needed to have some shelve space that was more popular, and we could get a better mark up.

    Get them.... mirrorless Interchangeable cameras has made older and dead mounts popular for fast primes compared to what is available in the native mount.