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

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

Tamron 11-20mm F/2.8 Di III-A RXD Lens Review - Performance: Tamron 11-20mm f/2.8 Di III-A VC RXD

 

At 11mm, central sharpness is excellent from f/2.8 to f/11 and still very good at f/16. The edges are good at f/2.8, very good at f/4, excellent at f/5.6, very good at f/8 and f/11 and good at f/16.

At 14mm, central sharpness is outstanding at f/2.8 and f/4, excellent from f/5.6 to f/11 and very good at f/16. The edges are excellent from f/2.8 to f/8, very good at f/11 and good at f/16.

At 16mm, central sharpness is outstanding at f/2.8 and f/4, excellent from f/5.6 to f/11 and very good at f/16. The edges are excellent from f/2.8 to f/8, very good at f/11 and good at f/16.

At 20mm, central sharpness is excellent at f/2.8, outstanding at f/4, excellent from f/5.6 to f/11 and very good at f/16. The edges are excellent from f/2.8 to f/11 and very good at f/16.

This is a remarkably excellent performance throughout, maintained across all the focal lengths. Top class results.

 

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

How to read our MTF charts

The blue column represents readings from the centre of the picture frame at the various apertures and the green is from the edges.

The scale on the left side is an indication of actual image resolution and sharpness as LW/PH and is described in detail above. The taller the column, the better the lens performance.

For this review, the lens was tested on a Sony A5100 using Imatest. Want to know more about how we review lenses?

 

CA (Chromatic Aberration) is measured with all in-camera corrections switched off, as far as we can do so anyway. Centrally, CA is not a problem, being well controlled. The edges do show some fringing, but not excessively so and on most subject matter this will not be noticeable. If further correction is needed then in-camera corrections can be switched on or other software used.

 

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

 

How to read our CA charts

Chromatic aberration (CA) is the lens' inability to focus on the sensor or film all colours of visible light at the same point. Severe chromatic aberration gives a noticeable fringing or a halo effect around sharp edges within the picture. It can be cured in software.

Apochromatic lenses have special lens elements (aspheric, extra-low dispersion etc) to minimize the problem, hence they usually cost more.

For this review, the lens was tested on a Sony A5100 using Imatest.

 

Distortion is also measured with in-camera corrections switched off, and this reveals a magnificent degree of barrel distortion at 11mm, measuring at -3.47%. This is very obvious indeed, and correction will need to be made unless for some creative reason it is kept in. By 14mm this has been reduced to an almost rectilinear -0.28% barrel distortion, after which it is pincushion all the way, measuring a modest +0.75% at 16mm and +1.53% at 20mm.

Bokeh is not necessarily the forte of wide-angle lenses, but nonetheless, this new lens does have a rather smooth and pleasant look to the out of focus areas in an image. It may well be that we will more often than not be looking at smaller apertures and extensive depth of field in wide-angle images but with that fast, bright f/2.8 aperture there is also potential for a more selective use of that depth of field.

Flare is generally not obvious in images, but in the most extreme lighting conditions, it is possible to generate some mild artefacts. Even then, there is no real drop in contrast.

Vignetting is most obvious at the widest angle and wide open, but otherwise is quite unobtrusive. Software correction is available if needed.

 

Aperture 11mm 14mm 16mm 20mm
f/2.8 -2.1 -1.5 -1.4 -1.3
f/4 -1.5 -1.4 -1.4 -1.2
f/5.6 -1.4 -1.3 -1.4 -1.2
f/8 -1.3 -1.2 -1.4 -1.2
f/11 -1.3 -1.2 -1.3 -1.1
f/16 -1.3 -1.2 -1.3 -1.1

 

 

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

 

 

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

 

You can view additional images in the Equipment Database, where you can add your own review, photos and product ratings.


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