Opinions on Tamron 17-50 f/2.8

Discussion in 'Lens Lust' started by goofball, May 28, 2007.

  1. Looking towards getting this lens, have a wedding coming up (not mine and I am not the photog) that I would like to have a fast zoom lens for. I have my primes and they will be used as well (mainly 35mm and 50mm) but seeing as I am lacking on the wide, I figured this would be a good lens to have.

    Any opinions on this lens? I am sure I will have to fight to get a copy that is acceptably sharp wide open and without focus issues but I'm not against that, I can test the lenses at the store with no problems.

    Thanks in advance for all opinions.
  2. From all the research I recently did (just bought the Sigma 24-60 f/2.8) The Tamron 17-50 f/2.8 got very high marks for sharpness. You might want to check the Photozone review for some in depth testing. It's not an AF-S lens so it might be a little noisier than some would like, but for the price it seems like a real performer.

    Here is the Photozone review

    The site has also reviewed the Nikkor 17-55 and Sigma 18-50 for reference.

    Good luck!
  3. Zachs


    Feb 25, 2006
    It's a very useful lens. At first I wasn't fond of it, but it did me VERY well on the last few jobs I've done with it. I bought it for wedding use as well.

    Here are two galleries all done with the tammy just testing and playing:
    Dog pictures:
    Horse pictures:

    Just shot a gig last night, so I post a few people shots later after I process them today.
  4. kbaird


    May 7, 2007
    Midwest, USA
    When I bought the nikon 17-55 I thought that I would
    sell the tamron but I found that I am keeping it on my
    D70 for use with family and friends as a light weight kit.
  5. kbaird


    May 7, 2007
    Midwest, USA
    These are cicadas with the tamron 17-50.


  6. Very nice.

    Anyone having any issues with flash exposure in TTL-BL mode and this lens? I'll be using an SB-600 mainly and this lens will see use outdoors as well as indoors.
  7. $480 CAN + tax at Henry's.
  8. kbaird


    May 7, 2007
    Midwest, USA
    I did have some trouble but I think it was user error.

    The speedlight instructions do say that you should
    be 10-12 ft from your subject (even when bouncing).

    If you are closer than that you may
    need to make some adjustments.

    When following the directions I actually had
    better relsults with TTL-BL than just TTL.

    I also was getting more blown highlights with
    the 17-50 than my 18-135 on a sunny day.

    This may have been user error also the bright
    sky in the background is not real easy to shoot.

    Many of the problems people complain about are
    probably user error but who would like to admit that.

    Sure it's not the 17-55 but it would
    not be very reallistic to expect that.
  9. weiran


    Jan 2, 2007
    Nottingham, UK
    I find the Tamron overexposes compared to my other lenses, which is a bit strange, so I set -0.3EV when shooting with it. Some poorly calibrated models sometimes even overexpose by a whole stop, so you may need to get it calibrated by Tamron.

    In comparison to the 17-55, I've yet to see one so if Keith is willing to do one I would be very interested! From what I've seen it's pretty close in terms of sharpness but the bokeh is rougher.
  10. Shooter


    May 7, 2007
    New York
    I have the Tamron 17-50 and like it very much. Its sharp, light wieght and a great walk around lens.
  11. ultimind


    May 13, 2007
    Cleveland, OH
    Does the 17-50 Tamron make for a decent replacement of the 18-70 kit lens? I know it won't have AF-S, but I'd like to have some faster wide-zoom glass.
  12. weiran


    Jan 2, 2007
    Nottingham, UK
    Definatly, a much better lens than the already good 18-70DX. Infact I find mine focuses faster than the 18-70DX even though it lacks AF-S, as it only takes 3 turns of the AF screw to go from 30cm to infinity, and it's f/2.8 so more light for the AF sensor.
  13. gugs


    Feb 24, 2006
    I am a big fan of that lens. Pictures are sharp even at 2.8, it is small, light, cheap...
    AF is not really an issue in practice.
    Highly recommended
  14. nancyr


    Feb 14, 2006
    La Jolla, CA
    Terrific lens

    Here's a me-too with a couple of totally unscientific, hand-held, real-world pics to back it up. Both are straight out of the D200 with camera sharpening +1, contrast and saturation normal.

    Points of light:
    Inside Our Lady of the Angels cathedral, L.A.

    My salad the other day, f/2.8 vs f/4

    Above at 50% of original size (750k). It's definitely a little sharper and contrastier at f/4, but some of that is just depth-of-field. It's more than adequate wide open.
  15. Ok, I think the concensus is pretty clear thus far.

    Methinks I'll be seeing those peeps at the camera store soon...

    Thanks for all the posts, it has helped greatly.

    Anyone else with thoughts, please chime in as well.
  16. weiran


    Jan 2, 2007
    Nottingham, UK
    The made in japan ones are usually better.
  17. kbaird


    May 7, 2007
    Midwest, USA
    Here is nothing fancy. Full image resized and 100% crop of
    the center only. The corners are not so great to compare.




  18. Well guys and gals, if you were going on an Alaskan cruise would you replace the 18-70 with this lens? Opinions one and all appreciated.

  19. Thanks to all for their replies, info, pictures, and everything.

    I've picked up the lens, and it appears to be very good thus far.
  20. Well, Keith -- you say "nothing fancy" but those crops speak volumes about the color, contrast, resolution and sharpness of the Nikkor by comparison. That's why it costs the big bucks. The Tammy (and likewise the new Sigma 18-50) is a very good lens capable of producing all the IQ most people need for the majority of uses but when you must have the best image quality, nothing beats the pro level Nikkors. Thanks for posting those.

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