Tamron AF 28-300mm F3.5-6.3 XR Di A-mount lens review by dumbasadoorknob

reviewer#9231 date: Jul-12-2011
sharpness: 4.5
color: 5
build: 4
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 4.3
tested on:
  • film camera:Film camera
  • APS-C: 6MP6 MP; 10MP10 MP; 12MP12 MP; 14MP14 MP; 16MP16 MP; 20MP20 MP; 24MP24 MP
  • full frame: 12MP12 MP; 24MP24 MP; 36MP36 MP; 42MP42 MP; 61MP61 MP
ownership:I own this lens
compared to:Min 28135
Sony 70300G
price paid:140 usd used
zoom lock
comment:My copy of this lens is better, in every way, than my copy of the Min 28135 -- but it is inferior to the 70300g -- except that it is an entire magnitude of size smaller, lighter, more portable. It fits in my pocket!

I bought my copy as a replacement when my son's copy bounced and needed repair. So it's not a really solid lens. But his copy was repaired (for almost as little as I paid for my new copy) and I stuck it in a drawer. I thought "ugh, superzoom, super bad."

Then I stumbled on an old Tokina 28-200, a heavyweight version of the Min28135. It too wasn't really satisfactory -- and I pulled this lens out of the drawer.

It's a perfect travel lens. It's image quality is not as good as the 35105, but it's almost as good, and it's three times the zoom ratio. The colors are better than normal Tamron, and acceptable to a Minolta color maven such as I think am. It has a sacrificial lens hood ( a bit small) and a zoom lock, and inexpensive 62mm filters, and a non-turning front lens. It is the perfect lens to show how good Sony/Minolta's inbody antishake is.

It's a little slow in zooming, and the zoom ring is stiff -- and it's a little slow in autofocus and lacks a focus hold or focus limiting button. The camera identifies its zoom length wrong at the short end, which is a common problem in reverse engineered lenses by Tamron.

It's so inexpensive on the web that it's almost a disposable lens, but it is surprisingly good. I recently thought of buying a Tamron or Sigma 24135 because of my dissatisfaction with my Min 28135 -- but I stopped that fantasy after I began playing with this lens. It serves my purposes better than they.

It's not a prime; it's not a G zoom. I live in sunny Southern California so there's always ample light -- but this lens is good, and it's an awful lot better than my view of superzooms has been.

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 14
  • sharpness: 4.14
  • color: 4.21
  • build: 3.64
  • distortion: 3.93
  • flare control: 4.00
  • overall: 3.99
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