I'm aware of this try-out service, plus Zeiss (and other's, too, Sigma for example) of course also have copies dedicated to be loaned to reviewers. There's a few issues with this approach though (for us): getting your hands on one of these requires patience (we're probably very low on their priority lists), but once you do, you need to be fast, because others are waiting for it, too, so you can have it for a few days only. The condition of the lenses is probably similar to the "regular" loaners, it has gone through a few hand already and might have been mistreated. If not, you never know if you got a hand-picked lens that might perform better than the average copy. And since we feel we'd have to share the source of the tested copy, we'd be under suspicion to write flattering reviews in return for a free loaner.
Regarding APO lenses again: sorry, I wasn't aware that part of the discussion already happened in the Canon section (just caught up there).
Yesterday I got a rental specimen of this lens. I think it was the same I had troubles to AF when I borrowed it briefly at Sigma's event in Tour de Peilz.
Now I know why. Given the AFMA numbers I can get with the dock are roughly the same I can get inside my D810, I and to set up camera and lens this way:
0.85 m: +31
1.25 m: +25
2.50 m: +21
âˆž : +17 (not completely tested)
No wonder I didn't get a single shot with the AF in focus. That is pretty much the poorest performance I ever saw from a new Sigma lens. From a rental lens, that is - I wonder if this importer wants to scare customers away?
Next to it, it's also the poorest performance of FoCal. At the end I had to use the fully manual FocusTune and LensAlign. because Reikan FoCal's business model is "throw the user out only three years after he paid for a full Pro license". FoCal told me the D810 is not supported although I have dozens of PDF documents from 2015 focus tests done with the D810...
The elder version recognized the body and froze after I wanted to set up the target. I always thought Adobe has a mean business model, but Reikan's is just plain betrayal. 70 quid for sh...t
However, I would be very astonished if I end up buying that lens. It's really over the edge of weight and size. I will take it next week to The Netherlands and before and after that I hope to do some comparison shots with the Fuji 56/1.2 APD.
Edit: FoCal 2.0.x has problems with Mac OS X 10.12, hence it was not working. The developer/supporter recommended me to go in file mode. Meaning: Taking a lot of pictures at various AFMA adjustments, load it into the software and get a result. That's just what LensAlign does only better.