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Tamron 17-35mm f/2.8-4 Di OSD Lens Review - Performance

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

Of course performance is vital, and we look first at sharpness at 17mm. This starts off very well, with excellent central sharpness from f/2.8 right through to f/11. Even f/16 is still very good. The edges are slower to start, with f/2.8 being good, f/4 very good and then f/5.6 and f/8 being excellent. f/11 is not far behind and very good, as is f/16.

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20mm sees excellent central sharpness from f/2.8 to f/11. f/16 is very good. The edges are slightly better now, being very good at f/2.8 and f/4, excellent from f/5.6 to f/11 and very good at f/16.

At 24mm we see an identical pattern of performance, with excellent central sharpness from f/3.2 to f/11. f/16 is very good. The edges are very good at f/2.8 and f/4, excellent from f/5.6 to f/11 and very good at f/16.

The quality is well maintained at 35mm, with the centre being excellent from f/4 to f/16 and good at f/22. The edges maintain performance well, although as expected there is a slight drop. The edges are very good from f/4 to f/8, excellent at f/11, very good at f/16 and just fair at f/22.

Tamron 17-35mm f/2.8-4 Di OSD (Model A037) 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 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 Nikon D810 using Imatest.

 

CA (Chromatic Aberration) is highly impressive at all focal lengths, centre and edge. Quite simply, it will not be an issue and although further correction could be made using software, it is highly unlikely that this will be necessary.

 

Tamron 17-35mm f/2.8-4 Di OSD (Model A037) 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 Nikon D810 using Imatest.

 

17mm sees -3.74% barrel distortion, quite obvious on architectural straight lines, but correctable in software. At 20mm we have a more modest -1.61% barrel and by 24mm this has moved to +0.23% pincushion. At 35mm we have +1.46% pincushion. Software correction can of course be made, but around 24mm the lens is almost rectilinear, which is worth bearing in mind.

Flare resistance is actually very good, even though with the sun in frame some minor artefacts can be induced. Contrast does not particularly suffer and, especially for a wide angle zoom, the performance in this respect is impressive.

Bokeh does not really impinge quite so much with wide-angle lenses as small apertures are often used to maximise depth of field. When backgrounds are diffused through the appearance of those out of focus areas, it is pleasant enough.

Vignetting at 20mm starts off with -2.2 stops at f/2.8, reducing to -1.4 at f/4 and then settling to around -0.9 down to f/16. 20mm and 24mm show very similar results, with -1.5 stops at open aperture, reducing thereafter to around -1.2 stops.

35mm shows the least vignetting, with -1.2 stops from f/4 to f/11 and -1.1 stops thereafter. The darkening of the corners can be corrected in camera or in software, although many subjects can actually be enhanced by a very slight vignette.

Overall the performance of the lens is very high and it is clearly amongst the best lenses in its group of fast wide angle zooms.


Tamron 17-35mm f/2.8-4 Di OSD (Model A037) Sample Photos

 

Tamron 17-35mm f/2.8-4 Di OSD (Model A037) Aperture range

 


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Comments


25 Sep 2018 4:51PM
Excellent review, I have had this little gem for a couple of weeks now and it truly is a steal for the optical quality, I was so surprised with the results I was getting that I did several tests on all the usual suspects, test charts brick wall etc and was amazed that it thrashed the Nikon 16-35 f4 VR and kept up with and even surpassed my Irix 15mm 2.4 and it is a Prime!
willbrealey 18 253
3 Oct 2018 5:12PM
I agree, its sharpness is prime-like. I got this lens a few weeks ago too. I don't usually buy brand new lenses let alone newly released ones, but I had a feeling that it was unlikely Tamron would be releasing a lemon given their growing reputation for quality. And I really wanted an ultrawide zoom that was lightweight and easy to carry around. Very happy with it so far.
rhody 20 2.8k 2 United Kingdom
8 Oct 2018 9:47PM
Knock knock Tamron! Any chance of a Sony E mount please?

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