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

reviewer#8945 date: Apr-18-2011
sharpness: 5
color: 5
build: 3
distortion: 5
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 70 mm macro
price paid:700 USD
positive:Sharp, seems well built, a very good macro with a few faults

Excellent reach
negative:No focus limiter
Hunts in AF
MF is touchy

comment:I use this almost exclusively on a tripod with manual focusing. Like most macros it is close to perfect optically. Functionally it has a couple of problems.
1. The manual focus ring is geared too high - very small movements make fairly large changes in focus. In addition, the ring doesn't move smoothly.
2. To switch from AF to MF on a Sony body requires two steps. The camera body first has to be switched to MF and then a ring on the lens has to be pushed out to release a clutch. I believe the lens was designed for Canikon cameras where only the clutch release needs to be changed to switch from AF to MF.

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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