Tamron SP AF 17-50mm F2.8 XR Di II LD Aspherical A-mount lens review by Vultite

reviewer#11307 date: Aug-13-2013
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:18-55 kit
price paid:$250 used
positive:Relatively cheap used
Relatively good distortion control and sharpness.
CA is minimal when stopped down and easily corrected
Color representation is good (but slightly warm)

negative:Heavy
Plastic (but metal mount)
manual focus ring is a little skinny for my taste
comment:I consider this a great upgrade from the AWFUL Sony kit lens (first generation, haven't seen or even want to try the second generation). The F2.8 fixed aperture is very nice to have and is a little soft at F2.8 BUT sharpens up nicely right after that with decent bokeh. The 67mm threads are a bit of an oddball but a adapter for 77mm filters was very cheap and not an issue. Build quality is plastic body with a metal mount, pretty standard these days and even the top models are now going to plastic bodies. There is a zoom lock for 17mm which is nice but I haven't found a need to use it (no zoom creep). Overall I found the image quality to be sharp, slightly warm in color, but very good because this zoom range is very tough to get right. Even the 16-80 zeiss barely edges this lens out in lab testing (but costs way more). Find yourself a good copy and you won't look back, yeah F2.8 is soft, but I bet this lens at F3.5 will blow the other stuff out of the water in terms of bokeh and sharpness.

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 214
  • sharpness: 4.59
  • color: 4.45
  • build: 4.14
  • distortion: 4.16
  • flare control: 4.45
  • overall: 4.36
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