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Best Tamron Lenses

If you're looking for the best Tamron lens for your camera, then take a look at this top list which features the best Tamron lenses currently available, as reviewed by ePHOTOzine.

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Best Tamron Lenses

Best Tamron Lenses

Tamron is a long-standing manufacturer of competitively priced, high-quality lenses, especially zooms. They have consistently offered lenses that are very mindful of the needs of photographers, lenses that are well thought out and fulfil those requirements. From being first with standard and super-zooms with huge ranges, Tamron has also had an enviable reputation for superb primes, especially the legendary 90mm macro lenses, but now extending to other focal lengths.

More exciting optics are in development, but the existing range offers a wide selection of quality lenses at very realistic price levels, within range of most photographers. Lenses such as the 18-300mm push the idea of one lens convenience with good solid quality results. Lenses such as the 90mm macro and 85mm primes are easily up there with the best, offering superb quality images.

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Best Tamron Lenses 

Tamron 17-70mm F/2.8 DI III-A VC RXD
Overall Rating

Tamron 17-70mm F/2.8 DI III-A VC RXD

Sharpness is excellent and well-maintained as we zoom in. Bokeh is pleasantly smooth and relaxed. The other technical requirements are well met. The handling is ultra-smooth and ergonomically sound. In addition, the less easily defined overall look of the images is extremely attractive. This is a lens that can be happily used for most of our general shooting in all the various genres mentioned above and more. Overall, the Tamron 17-70mm F/2.8 DI III-A VC RXD is an excellent choice as a high-quality standard zoom lens with great handling.

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Tamron 18-300mm f/3.5-6.3 Di III-A VC VXD
Overall Rating

Tamron 18-300mm f/3.5-6.3 Di III-A VC VXD

Using this lens as a general-purpose travel lens, for landscape, architecture, street, portraits, flower details, and wildlife, it is entirely possible that it will easily cover all those needs. No longer will subjects escape because the wrong lens is on the camera, no longer will subjects be too close to focus on and no longer will those impromptu wildlife shots be out of range, rendering the subject as a tiny dot. Using this lens to shoot images of test charts will reveal the shortcomings technically, but by being aware of these we can avoid the pitfalls and thoroughly enjoy the easy shooting experience that the Tamron lens offers. Shoot at f/11 or wider and avoid the main subject being at the edges at 18mm and 300mm and the result will be some beautiful images, with rich colours and sharpness, ranging from very good to outstanding.

Yes, there are compromises technically that we can be aware of, but there are also touches of excellence and the lens can happily be 'Recommended'.

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Tamron 28-75mm F/2.8 Di III VXD G2
Overall Rating

Tamron 28-75mm F/2.8 Di III VXD G2

It's a lovely lens to use and is capable of some excellent results. In some respects, it may be desirable to switch on some lens corrections, but this is something that is becoming increasingly so with many mirrorless lens designs, and after all, it is the end result that matters. Even where the edge sharpness falls off at 75mm this does give us the possibility of some very attractive portrait effects with beautifully smooth bokeh. At all other focal lengths sharpness is of a very high order, without compromising bokeh. Add to this the really useful close focusing and we have a very practical lens indeed.

In summary, an excellent lens that can be 'Highly Recommended'.

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Tamron 35-150mm F/2-2.8 Di III VXD
Overall Rating

Tamron 35-150mm F/2-2.8 Di III VXD

The performance of some new lenses can be quite extraordinary, as is the sharpness in this case. Basically, whatever setting we choose the central sharpness will be excellent. At some points, the sharpness centre and edge is so close it can be considered to be totally even. The other qualities are there to be seen, measured without any help from the camera, but we can always switch in those corrections or use software to enhance the total result.

It is true that the lens is on the large and heavy side, but this is down to the fast, bright maximum aperture of f/2, and the value of this should not be underestimated.

Lenses are not just a collection of technical measurements though and it is equally important to consider the overall “look” of an optic. This can be as much a result of its technical limitations. The Tamron has both qualities – excellent technical performance coupled with a very pleasing “look”.

Another worthy winner from Tamron and "Highly Recommended".

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Tamron 11-20mm F/2.8 Di III-A RXD
Overall Rating

Tamron 11-20mm F/2.8 Di III-A RXD

No two ways about it, this is an extraordinary lens. Its performance is superb, it is far lighter than it could be expected to be, it has weather sealing and the price is realistic. An ideal travel companion, with the bonus of that fast, bright f/2.8 aperture. It doesn't have any form of shake reduction, but fortunately, this may be more acceptable in an ultra-wide lens rather than in a telephoto. Still, that would have been the icing on the cake and some Sony bodies do have inbuilt SteadyShot.

When we combine this with Tamron's matching 17-70mm, it gives a powerful duo of lenses that could be all the travelling light photographer would need.

"Highly Recommended". 

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Tamron 150-500mm f/5-6.7 Di III VC VXD
Overall Rating

Tamron 150-500mm f/5-6.7 Di III VC VXD

I like this lens, and am pleased with the images that it has made possible. It handles well, and the results are sharp, with some absolutely gorgeous bokeh, despite only having 7 diaphragm blades. Its sharpness is concentrated towards the centre of the frame, especially at short distances, and this field curvature does mean that flat subjects may need stopping down to f/11. But out in the field, shooting wildlife and no doubt sports as well, the lens starts to shine, producing really great results.

Highly Recommended.

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Tamron 17-70mm f/2.8 Di III-A VC RXD
Overall Rating

Tamron 17-70mm f/2.8 Di III-A VC RXD

As a lens, the Tamron is splendid. In common with many mirrorless lenses some of the parameters, such as distortion and CA, are controlled in conjunction with the camera to get the best results, but the lens on its own is still an excellent overall performer. The sharpness is exemplary and holds up very well, even at the longest focal length where performance in zooms is often at its weakest.

The caveat regarding handling is really not the fault of the lens, rather the fault, if fault is the right word, of the tiny APS-C format camera used. Operation of the camera is intrinsically fiddly and the size of the lens is quite out of proportion to the size of the body.

However, there's no denying the excellence of the performance and the lens can certainly be 'Highly Recommended'.

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Tamron 70-300mm f/4.5-6.3 Di III RXD
Overall Rating

Tamron 70-300mm f/4.5-6.3 Di III RXD

The Tamron 70-300mm f/4.5-6.3 Di III RXD lens is a pure delight to use. It does its job admirably, without any glitches or vices getting in the way of enjoying our photography. The optical performance is not perfect, although at the centre of the field it is excellent throughout. The edges at wider apertures are weaker, but even this need not be too much of a problem as it does open up some nice portrait possibilities as well as offering a selection of apertures where the images are indeed crisp right across the frame. Being aware of the lens's characteristics enables us to work with it to produce the images we want.

Overall, a lovely lens that is well-priced and works well with the Sony camera body. 

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Tamron 28-200mm f/2.8-5.6 Di III RXD
Overall Rating

Tamron 28-200mm f/2.8-5.6 Di III RXD

This lens is very impressive indeed. The quality of results is far better than we might expect, and extremely well held even at the longer focal lengths, often a weak spot with zoom lenses. There is also the option of switching in the in-camera corrections if desired.

This is a lens that is hard to fault in terms of handling or results and the snappy, sharp images obtained are a testament to this. The focal length range may be a little more restricted than some would like, but the compact and light form of the lens may make this an advantage for travel in particular.

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Tamron 70-180mm f/2.8 Di III VXD
Overall Rating

Tamron 70-180mm f/2.8 Di III VXD

It might seem a very bold move to step outside the current paradigm and trim that 20mm off the focal length, but the advantages of doing so become immediately obvious when the lens is handled. It is lighter, more compact, the cost is appropriately fair and the optical quality is excellent throughout. Overall, in summary, we have an excellent lens with some unique bonus properties as well, and another Editor's Choice for Tamron and the 70-180mm f/2.8 Di III VXD.

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Tamron 35mm f/2.8 Di III OSD M1:2
Overall Rating

Tamron 35mm f/2.8 Di III OSD M1:2

Many photographers prefer a standard lens that is wider than the traditional 50mm, and 35mm is often the favoured choice. It is wide enough to give a slightly increased field of view and yet still has good geometry and high standards of sharpness. The Tamron 35mm f/2.8 Di III OSD M1:2 fulfils all of the needs of a high-class 35mm lens at a very attractive price level. What's not to like? 

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Tamron 24mm f/2.8 Di III OSD M1:2
Overall Rating

Tamron 24mm f/2.8 Di III OSD M1:2

24mm is a classic focal length for full-frame cameras, and with good reason. Although it is no longer regarded as being such an ultra-wide as it was, it retains its position as the widest lens that is clearly usable for general-purpose shooting as well as dramatic wide-angle effects. So whether we are discussing street photography, landscape, architecture, even sometimes portraiture, the 24mm is incredibly useful and versatile.

Tamron are offering us here a brilliant performer at a very reasonable price. It is also light and compact and ideal for unobtrusive street shooting

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Tamron 20mm f/2.8 Di III OSD M1:2
Overall Rating

Tamron 20mm f/2.8 Di III OSD M1:2

A compact, moisture-resistant lens with a macro magnification of 1:2, all for £399, is by any yardstick an excellent value-for-money option. The quality of the results clinches it and spreads the concept of the “plastic fantastic” right into the realms of the ultra-wide. In many ways, this lens and its siblings buck the trend for bigger, faster, more expensive optics, and in the context of ostensibly compact mirrorless cameras maybe this is a good thing. For travel, landscape, architecture, interiors and a whole host of other imagery, the Tamron 20mm f/2.8 Di III OSD M1:2 is a very sound, high-quality option and easily achieves the accolade of Editor's Choice.

 
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Tamron SP 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro VC USD
Overall Rating

Tamron SP 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro VC USD

As you might expect from a 90mm macro lens from Tamron, the optical performance of this lens is excellent. The lens delivers superb sharpness and contrast plus distortion, chromatic aberrations and falloff are kept in check also. The Vibration Compensation system is a useful addition for hand-held photography also.

 

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Tamron SP 85mm f/1.8 Di VC USD
Overall Rating

Tamron SP 85mm f/1.8 Di VC USD

A slightly slower maximum aperture of f/1.8 (many 85mm lenses are f/1.4 designs) does seem to have its advantages in terms of a more compact, lighter lens and also a lower cost. Performance is impeccable, the lens handles superbly and the price well within reason. There is little not to like about this Tamron lens and Nikon, Canon and Sony users will be able to use it to their advantage. Unless the photographer has a definite need for an f/1.4 then the Tamron 85mm f/1.8 Di VC USD delivers superb quality at a more reasonable price level.

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Tamron SP 35mm f/1.4 Di USD
Overall Rating

Tamron SP 35mm f/1.4 Di USD

The performance is excellent, the handling is excellent and this puts the Tamron on a par with the best alternative 35mm f/1.4 lenses, and, it must be said, at an attractive price. 

The only question is whether or not the photographer finds 35mm to be the right focal length on full frame. For some, it may fall between being truly wide angle and being long enough for more flattering portraits. For others, it will be the perfect standard lens, perhaps especially for those involved with classic street photography or small group portraits.

If the specification is right though, then this lens hits the spot and yet again Tamron has that coveted accolade and another Editor's Choice.

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Tamron 35-150mm f/2.8-4 Di VC OSD
Overall Rating

Tamron 35-150mm f/2.8-4 Di VC OSD

The Tamron 35-150mm f/2.8-4 Di VC OSD is another great lens from Tamron. It handles beautifully and delivers the goods in terms of quality. The 150mm length is long enough to be useful, but not so long that it increases the bulk of the lens too much. There's a lot to like about the design engineers' decisions and they have provided a lens that is a clear photographer's lens and also a clear Editor's Choice.

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Tamron 17-28mm f/2.8 Di III RXD
Overall Rating

Tamron 17-28mm f/2.8 Di III RXD

Some lenses are great, some lenses feel great and really gel with the user, and some are great and really clunky to use. The Tamron 17-28mm f/2.8 Di III RXD performs superbly, feels fantastic to use and is a very reasonable price as well. It's light, efficient, moisture resistant and seems to tick all the boxes. This one easily makes it into the hallowed ranks of an Editor's Choice.

 
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Tamron 17-35mm f/2.8-4 Di OSD
Overall Rating

Tamron 17-35mm f/2.8-4 Di OSD

There are a few things missing, such as Vibration Reduction and full-time manual focus, but the Tamron 17-35mm f/2.8-4 Di OSD is a very impressive lens in terms of performance. When we see that the price is also very reasonable it becomes an attractive proposition indeed. If the features and specification suit, then the lens can definitely be Highly Recommended.

 

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Tamron 70-210mm f/4 Di VC USD
Overall Rating

Tamron 70-210mm f/4 Di VC USD

Some lenses are impossible to dislike, and this is certainly one of them. It is compact and light compared to the f/2.8 lenses, performance is excellent and gives beautifully crisp images, handling is superb and the price very attractive. The Tamron 70-210mm f/4 Di VC USD is a lens for any Canon or Nikon user to put very high on their list and an Editor's Choice.

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Looking For More Buying Inspiration? 

Take a look at our other Buyer's Guides which include top lists featuring various lenses, must-buy smartphones, top camera recommendations and more. 

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