Tamron SP AF 70-200mm F2.8 Di LD IF Macro A-mount lens review by sora3

reviewer#9654 date: Dec-2-2011
sharpness: 3
color: 4
build: 3
distortion: 4
flare control: 4
overall: 3.6
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:Sony 70-300mm f4.5-5.6
Tamron 70-300mm f4.5-5.6 DI LD Macro
price paid:1000 AUD (new)
positive:Good weight compared to other 70-200 f2.8 lens
Nice bokeh
Decent IQ
Doesn't have much distortion
Nice fit for the a77
negative:AF is average to pathetic in low light
Easily confused in high contrast environments
Need one stop to be sharp overall
Odd MF switch
comment:Well, this lens has been used on the a200, a33 and recently the a77. So far, this is what I can say about it.

The IQ is quite nice. I haven't seen much ghosting or CA which is good as at this range, I would expect it. The bokeh is quite nice to use if you stop it one stop down. Iwouldn't say the f2.8 is bad, just not as sharp as you want. The reach helps a lot with the motorsports I shoot with. The weight is quite comforting given it is feels built like a tank.

However, there are quite some downsides as I noted. You need to stop it one stop to be quite sharp. In high contrast locations where I shoot, the AF was quite pathetic. Shots that could have been sharp came out quite soft on the subject compared to the background. It might not be a problem in other locations or with the use of a flash but I highly suggest you test this before you part with your cash. In normal light, it's decent but don't try it in low light as it hunts and hunts and hunts a lot.

Overall, should you buy this lens? Perhaps. But I do suggest you look at what you're shooting and decide yourself. If in doubt, I highly recommend saving more and buying the Sony G-version.

rating summary

lens image
  • total reviews: 87
  • sharpness: 4.78
  • color: 4.74
  • build: 4.29
  • distortion: 4.82
  • flare control: 4.80
  • overall: 4.69
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