Questions about Tamron 17-50 2.8

Joined
Apr 24, 2011
Messages
65
Location
Puerto Rico
Hi there:

I am new to the forum but I am looking forward to answers to these questios:

How good (if any good) is the Tamron 17-50 2.8 for Nikon???

This lens seems quite affordable and fast enough to be used indoors, but the affordability puts me to think.

Do some of you have it?

How sharp is it?

If you have samples shot with it they would be more than helpful
 
Joined
Apr 26, 2009
Messages
1,011
Location
Los Angeles
There is a lens thread here at the top where you can see plenty of samples with 17-50 Tamron. https://www.nikoncafe.com/vforums/showthread.php?t=165163&highlight=tamron+17-50+samples

It is a very popular lens, one of the most popular ones. There were 3 models of that lens. First model of Tamron 17-50 F/2.8 was a NON-BIM model. It was arguably the sharpest one and the fastest autofocusing and the quietest. That model requires a body with build-in focusing motor to operate autofocus. I currently own that model. They are not easy to find.

The second model was Tamron 17-50 F/2.8 with BIM. That one has a built-in-motor and was created to be used with Nikon D40 series which lacks motor. That model autofocuses slower and is noisy (Tamron's in-lens motor in that lens is just noisy). There are examples on youtube just how noisy that model is. I used to own that model I agree it is slower focusing and noisy. I also had a couple of incidents of it not focusing on D40 body. The sharpness is also considered not as good as the first model, but still very very good.

The third model is the one with VC. it is larger and heavier than the other two, has excellent Vibration Compensation, and the sharpness is considered pretty good, but not as good as Model 1 or Model 2.

All three are popular models though
 
Last edited by a moderator:

JusPlainCrayzee

Administrator
Administrator
Joined
May 19, 2008
Messages
28,347
Location
St. Louis, Missouri
I have the non-BIM version and it is quite sharp. Here is a shot taken indoors with available light:

Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
 
Joined
Feb 3, 2009
Messages
6,111
Location
East Midlands, UK
I have the BIM version, I like it a lot.

For samples, check out my Flickr page (link in my signature) - most of the images on there are taken with the 17-50/2.8.

I've had a few instances of it not autofocussing on my D200, but focusing speed and noise both seem okay to me.
 
Joined
Jan 18, 2011
Messages
987
Location
Toronto, Canada
I think you'll mostly find that whoever owns this lens, loves it. For those that don't love it, it's because of the slower focusing and not the image quality. The IQ and the sharpness is just as good (flame-suit: on) as the Nikon 17-55.

I own the BIM non VC version.
 
Joined
Oct 11, 2007
Messages
2,483
Location
Missouri
EXCELLENT is an understatement. Opinions vary slightly on wide open performance, but mine is very sharp at f2.8 and stupidly sharp by f/4. Even if the price was the same I would choose the Tamron over Nikon's 17-55 due to the fact that you get equal (or better) IQ in the Tamron with half the size/weight. You lose a little in build quality, but I'm not rough on my gear.

Here's a few samples from mine (mine is the second iteration with the built in motor, no VC)

17mm - f2.8
Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)


50mm - f2.8
Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
 

Attachments

Joined
Sep 7, 2010
Messages
817
Location
Utah
From everything I have read and heard, the Tammy 17-50/2.8 is an excellent lens for the money.
 
Joined
Feb 21, 2011
Messages
124
Location
Guam
It's one of the gems in Tamron's line-up. I have 2 versions. A BIM-version that I am using with my D90 (and used to with my now-sold D40) and also a full-frame non-BIM version 28-75 f2.8 for my D700. Both are excellent performers, especially for their price. They are also small and light for a fixed aperture lens.
 
Joined
Aug 7, 2006
Messages
1,907
Location
Hyderabad, India
There is a lens thread here at the top where you can see plenty of samples with 17-50 Tamron. https://www.nikoncafe.com/vforums/showthread.php?t=165163&highlight=tamron+17-50+samples

It is a very popular lens, one of the most popular ones. There were 3 models of that lens. First model of Tamron 17-50 F/2.8 was a NON-BIM model. It was arguably the sharpest one and the fastest autofocusing and the quietest. That model requires a body with build-in focusing motor to operate autofocus. I currently own that model. They are not easy to find.

The second model was Tamron 17-50 F/2.8 with BIM. That one has a built-in-motor and was created to be used with Nikon D40 series which lacks motor. That model autofocuses slower and is noisy (Tamron's in-lens motor in that lens is just noisy). There are examples on youtube just how noisy that model is. I used to own that model I agree it is slower focusing and noisy. I also had a couple of incidents of it not focusing on D40 body. The sharpness is also considered not as good as the first model, but still very very good.

The third model is the one with VC. it is larger and heavier than the other two, has excellent Vibration Compensation, and the sharpness is considered pretty good, but not as good as Model 1 or Model 2.

All three are popular models though
I have this lens. It is not a VC model. But how do I know if it is a a BIM or non BIM model? I use it on D300 and hence don't have clue.
 
Last edited by a moderator:
Joined
Apr 14, 2011
Messages
46
Location
Jakarta
I just tried the VC version in the store, and found the auto-focus a little noisy.
May not be a factor for you though, give it a try.
 
Joined
Apr 26, 2009
Messages
1,011
Location
Los Angeles
I have this lens. It is not a VC model. But how do I know if it is a a BIM or non BIM model? I use it on D300 and hence don't have clue.
It is easy. Look at the mount. The nonBIM model will have a screw. The BIM model does not. Look at the lens mount for any of your nikkor af and af-d lenses. They will have the same screw. Af-s models will not.
 
Joined
Nov 23, 2008
Messages
117
Location
Australia
I own the 1st version. Its very sharp at 2.8 & is my most used lens being so versatile (wide'ish, fast'ish, short portrait).

BUT.

I have noticed a lot of sample variation and would not buy a copy without thoroughly testing it.

For instance, I have used copies that:

1) Have extreme back-focussing beyond what can be compensated for via AF Fine Tune.
2) Are wierdly dark, requiring EV+7 to get an acceptable image (I usually set to EV-7).
3) Have decentered elements (mine unfortunately) whereby the focal plane is not 100% parallel to the sensor.

Also from my experience, a 2nd hand copy is a riskier proposition because its not the sort of lens you get rid of unless it has a problem (or the vendor is changing formats).

So buyer beware...
 
Joined
Apr 2, 2011
Messages
33
Location
New York
I own the 1st version. Its very sharp at 2.8 & is my most used lens being so versatile (wide'ish, fast'ish, short portrait).

BUT.

I have noticed a lot of sample variation and would not buy a copy without thoroughly testing it.

For instance, I have used copies that:

1) Have extreme back-focussing beyond what can be compensated for via AF Fine Tune.
2) Are wierdly dark, requiring EV+7 to get an acceptable image (I usually set to EV-7).
3) Have decentered elements (mine unfortunately) whereby the focal plane is not 100% parallel to the sensor.

Also from my experience, a 2nd hand copy is a riskier proposition because its not the sort of lens you get rid of unless it has a problem (or the vendor is changing formats).

So buyer beware...
thanks for the advice Gnik. usually i dont buy lenses second hand without thoroughly testing them, but i went through a bunch of questions with the seller and saw that he was liquidating all his nikon gear and also managed to pickup this lens and sb600 for 440 total shipped. everything comes with original box. cross your fingers for me and hope that the tamron is a good sharp copy! Thanks again.
 
Joined
Feb 21, 2011
Messages
124
Location
Guam
It is easy. Look at the mount. The nonBIM model will have a screw. The BIM model does not. Look at the lens mount for any of your nikkor af and af-d lenses. They will have the same screw. Af-s models will not.
I have this lens. It is not a VC model. But how do I know if it is a a BIM or non BIM model? I use it on D300 and hence don't have clue.
Another easy way to find out. I believe non-BIM have a manual aperture ring, and BIM models does not. Something like between a Nikon AF-D and AF-G. My BIM 17-50 f2.8 that I use on my DX (D90 and used to be on my non-motor D40) does not have an aperture ring and my non-BIM 28-75 f2.8 (FF version) that I use on my D700 FX has an aperture ring.

Another thing I noticed though (at least on the 28-75 FF version) is that there are a couple of types of non-BIM. One is "Made In Japan" and the other one is "Assembled In China". I don't know how the quality would differ between the two but my chinese-assembled 28-75 felt clunky. Not sure if this applies to the 17-50 version though.
 
Top Bottom