Tamron SP AF 180mm F3.5 Di LD IF A-mount lens review by Phil

reviewer#2309 date: May-13-2007
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 4
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 4.4
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:Sigma 180mm macro
price paid:$620.00USD
positive:Very sharp, great colour and contrast. I also like the silky milky smooth background
negative:Af hunts a lot
comment:Took a long time to decide on this one and decided on Tamron only after I had an opportunity to take shots with both Tamron and Sigam 180mm. Both lenses produce sharp pictures but I find the tamron pics had a little extra UMPH in them which gave me that little push I needed.

So far, I have taken about 1,000 pics of insects, flowers and birds, most with manual focusing. The pictures were very, very sharp with good contrast. The colours were amazing. And the background coloring were silky, milky smooth.

The only annoyance I have found with this lense is with the Af. It hunts a lot unless your subject area is large enough and when it hunts it travels the full length and back before stopping. Limiters would have been a blessing on this lense.

The build rating - deducted 1.0 for the AF, I did prefer a more useful AF, had no problems with flare and distortion but based on my limited use so far.

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 38
  • sharpness: 4.78
  • color: 4.68
  • build: 4.29
  • distortion: 4.74
  • flare control: 4.42
  • overall: 4.58
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