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Author Topic: Review: Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 VC USD  (Read 20057 times)

sdsr

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Re: Review: Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 VC USD
« Reply #15 on: July 27, 2013, 12:26:17 PM »
Thanks, Dustin, for a useful (and attractive!) review.  I'm especially grateful for your bokeh samples - very impressive performance by the lens.  (Having bought a couple of Canon MkIIs and returned them because of decentering problems, I'm rather tempted to try one of these instead.)

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Re: Review: Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 VC USD
« Reply #15 on: July 27, 2013, 12:26:17 PM »

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Re: Review: Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 VC USD
« Reply #16 on: July 27, 2013, 02:03:06 PM »
Thanks Dustin,
As a prosumer who doesn't make a dime off of photography, and who was thinking about the MKII for Christmas, this might make more sense especially the part about taking the extra $1,000 and spending it on other lenses.
Canon 6D, EF 70-200 f/4 L USM, EF 24-105 f/4 L IS USM, EF 35 f/2 IS USM, EF 50 f/1.8 II, EF 85 f/1.8 USM, 580EX

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Re: Review: Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 VC USD
« Reply #17 on: July 27, 2013, 02:08:28 PM »
Thanks a ton Dustin! This lens has been on my mind lately. Still need to go out and buy the Tamron 24-70, so maybe I'll need to add the 70-200. *sigh*  I need to stop buying old film cameras...

At least old film cameras are usually cheap...it's just what you do with them that gets expensive!

I've got another buddy who seems to have the same disease you do ;)


Cheap is relative. I've become a bit obsessed with 120 film cameras, and it doesn't help when I have a Marina RB67 and want to find a lens or accessories for it. Even though they're a lot cheaper than they were, it still is $75 here, $200 there. It all adds up! Plus of course my Polaroid Automatics and SX-70. And film and development costs. Yea... I've gone a bit off the deep end. It's so much fun =D
6D x 2 | EOS-M w/22mm f/2 + 18-55 STM + EF Adapter| Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 | Tamron 24-70 f/2.8 VC | 35mm f/2 IS | 40mm f/2.8 | 100L | 135L | 70-300L -----OLD SCHOOL----- SMC Takumar 28mm f/3.5, Super Takumar 35mm f/3.5, SMC Takumar 55mm f/1.8, Helios 44-2 and 44-4, Super Takumar 150mm f/4

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Re: Review: Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 VC USD
« Reply #18 on: July 27, 2013, 02:10:15 PM »
Thanks, Dustin, for a useful (and attractive!) review.  I'm especially grateful for your bokeh samples - very impressive performance by the lens.  (Having bought a couple of Canon MkIIs and returned them because of decentering problems, I'm rather tempted to try one of these instead.)

If you have the opportunity to buy from a decent retailer, you could probably give it a spin for yourself and return if it wasn't up to snuff.  Thanks for the kudos.

Thanks Dustin,
As a prosumer who doesn't make a dime off of photography, and who was thinking about the MKII for Christmas, this might make more sense especially the part about taking the extra $1,000 and spending it on other lenses.

For a prosumer I would call it an excellent choice, as it optically competes with the Canon MKII at a much lower price point.
6D x 2 | EOS-M w/22mm f/2 + 18-55 STM + EF Adapter| Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 | Tamron 24-70 f/2.8 VC | 35mm f/2 IS | 40mm f/2.8 | 100L | 135L | 70-300L -----OLD SCHOOL----- SMC Takumar 28mm f/3.5, Super Takumar 35mm f/3.5, SMC Takumar 55mm f/1.8, Helios 44-2 and 44-4, Super Takumar 150mm f/4

drjlo

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Re: Review: Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 VC USD
« Reply #19 on: July 27, 2013, 04:09:29 PM »
A very helpful review for those who don't want to pay for that white f/2.8 II. 

"One thing I noticed over the trial is that while Tamron lenses typically tend towards warmer color rendering, this is not the case with this particular lens.  It is more neutral, even slightly tending towards cooler rendering.  Colors are very vivid and rich, though, while skin tones are very naturally produced.  I have rarely seen better color rendering."

Interesting that not too many people talk about color differences among lens brands.  Even when I had a third-party lens that was "better" than Canon in certain respects (certain Sigma sharper, Certain Zeiss bolder colors, etc), I preferred to keep my lens stable with that Canon color character so that I can keep my post-processing workflow constant, without having to do extra steps to adjust colors to where I wanted. 

For the photo's in your review, how much and what kind of post-processing was involved, especially for the colors?

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Re: Review: Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 VC USD
« Reply #20 on: July 27, 2013, 04:34:49 PM »
A very helpful review for those who don't want to pay for that white f/2.8 II. 

"One thing I noticed over the trial is that while Tamron lenses typically tend towards warmer color rendering, this is not the case with this particular lens.  It is more neutral, even slightly tending towards cooler rendering.  Colors are very vivid and rich, though, while skin tones are very naturally produced.  I have rarely seen better color rendering."

Interesting that not too many people talk about color differences among lens brands.  Even when I had a third-party lens that was "better" than Canon in certain respects (certain Sigma sharper, Certain Zeiss bolder colors, etc), I preferred to keep my lens stable with that Canon color character so that I can keep my post-processing workflow constant, without having to do extra steps to adjust colors to where I wanted. 

For the photo's in your review, how much and what kind of post-processing was involved, especially for the colors?

The majority of the photos in the review have very little pp.  Some are labelled as having none other a standard RAW conversion.  A few shots have been posted, and they will typically stand out as being either stylized or having a bit more pop.  For a point of comparison, I would recommend you look at the series of photos that I took during the section that compares magnification.  The Tamron is presented next to the 70-300L and the 135L, two lenses noted for having nice color rendering.  The 135L tends to be a bit cooler than many Canons.  All of those photos have no post processing and were taken in identical lighting conditions.  I don't see hardly any color variation at all.
6D x 2 | EOS-M w/22mm f/2 + 18-55 STM + EF Adapter| Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 | Tamron 24-70 f/2.8 VC | 35mm f/2 IS | 40mm f/2.8 | 100L | 135L | 70-300L -----OLD SCHOOL----- SMC Takumar 28mm f/3.5, Super Takumar 35mm f/3.5, SMC Takumar 55mm f/1.8, Helios 44-2 and 44-4, Super Takumar 150mm f/4

ilang

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Re: Review: Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 VC USD
« Reply #21 on: July 27, 2013, 04:48:48 PM »
Thanks for your review Dustin,

I bought this lens this week but have only taken a few test shots and very impressed so far , most of my testing has been at f2.8. Sharpness and Bokeh is amazing.

I have rented the Canon 70-300L before and was impressed with the lens how does the Tamron with a teleconverter compare on a practical basis , I do know you loose 20mm ? Do you know if Canon teleconverters will work on the Tamron?



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Re: Review: Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 VC USD
« Reply #21 on: July 27, 2013, 04:48:48 PM »

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Re: Review: Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 VC USD
« Reply #22 on: July 27, 2013, 07:15:04 PM »
Thanks for your review Dustin,

I bought this lens this week but have only taken a few test shots and very impressed so far , most of my testing has been at f2.8. Sharpness and Bokeh is amazing.

I have rented the Canon 70-300L before and was impressed with the lens how does the Tamron with a teleconverter compare on a practical basis , I do know you loose 20mm ? Do you know if Canon teleconverters will work on the Tamron?

You'll have to give us your own feedback after you have a little more time with it.  It's hard to compare the 70-300L; they really serve two very difference purposes.  If you want to travel, the 70-300L is a much better choice as it is far more compact (particularly when fully retracted).  It is an awesome lens, very sharp, great color, and surprisingly good bokeh for a variable aperture zoom.  The Tamron, for me, serves a very different purpose.  It is a perfect event tool and obviously serves the purpose of narrow aperture work.

I didn't test it with the my Canon teleconverter because it worked so well with the Kenko, but I see no reason why it wouldn't work.  I should have put it on, but I was traveling a lot during the period I was testing and had multiple events to cover during that time.  I would have liked to have had more opportunity to just shoot random stuff, but part of the reason that we chose that time to do the review was specifically because I had multiple professional events to cover.
6D x 2 | EOS-M w/22mm f/2 + 18-55 STM + EF Adapter| Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 | Tamron 24-70 f/2.8 VC | 35mm f/2 IS | 40mm f/2.8 | 100L | 135L | 70-300L -----OLD SCHOOL----- SMC Takumar 28mm f/3.5, Super Takumar 35mm f/3.5, SMC Takumar 55mm f/1.8, Helios 44-2 and 44-4, Super Takumar 150mm f/4

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Re: Review: Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 VC USD
« Reply #23 on: July 28, 2013, 06:40:10 PM »
How's the sharpness on the 70-300L vs the Tamron?  I have the non L 70-300 IS, and I can tell that it's quite soft at 300mm.  In some ways, I'm sure I can get the same IQ with a 200mm lens that's sharper, and then crop it down.

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Re: Review: Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 VC USD
« Reply #24 on: July 28, 2013, 11:13:33 PM »
How's the sharpness on the 70-300L vs the Tamron?  I have the non L 70-300 IS, and I can tell that it's quite soft at 300mm.  In some ways, I'm sure I can get the same IQ with a 200mm lens that's sharper, and then crop it down.

That's a tough call.  I have a really sharp copy of the 70-300L, but I didn't really compare IQ head to head much because the two lenses really don't compete in the same category.  I only have two photos that compare the image quality from the two.  Note that at 200mm the 70-300L is @ f/5, so that tells the story of the two different purposes of the lenses.  That being said, I have included crops from the shots that I have.  The Tamron is the first in both comparisons.  My opinion is the 70-300L is sharper in the close focus shot; the second (at distance) is pretty much a wash.
6D x 2 | EOS-M w/22mm f/2 + 18-55 STM + EF Adapter| Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 | Tamron 24-70 f/2.8 VC | 35mm f/2 IS | 40mm f/2.8 | 100L | 135L | 70-300L -----OLD SCHOOL----- SMC Takumar 28mm f/3.5, Super Takumar 35mm f/3.5, SMC Takumar 55mm f/1.8, Helios 44-2 and 44-4, Super Takumar 150mm f/4

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Re: Review: Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 VC USD
« Reply #25 on: July 28, 2013, 11:14:39 PM »
Second Crops:
6D x 2 | EOS-M w/22mm f/2 + 18-55 STM + EF Adapter| Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 | Tamron 24-70 f/2.8 VC | 35mm f/2 IS | 40mm f/2.8 | 100L | 135L | 70-300L -----OLD SCHOOL----- SMC Takumar 28mm f/3.5, Super Takumar 35mm f/3.5, SMC Takumar 55mm f/1.8, Helios 44-2 and 44-4, Super Takumar 150mm f/4

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Re: Review: Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 VC USD
« Reply #26 on: July 28, 2013, 11:16:32 PM »
You can tell from these images that the microcontrast with the 70-300L is better (it is one of the best lenses I have used in this area).

P.S.  The non-L 70-300 doesn't hold a candle to the L.  It is an optical beast.
6D x 2 | EOS-M w/22mm f/2 + 18-55 STM + EF Adapter| Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 | Tamron 24-70 f/2.8 VC | 35mm f/2 IS | 40mm f/2.8 | 100L | 135L | 70-300L -----OLD SCHOOL----- SMC Takumar 28mm f/3.5, Super Takumar 35mm f/3.5, SMC Takumar 55mm f/1.8, Helios 44-2 and 44-4, Super Takumar 150mm f/4

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Re: Review: Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 VC USD
« Reply #27 on: July 29, 2013, 08:13:07 AM »
I should add that the closer focus picture above was taken to demonstrate maximum magnification, not critical sharpness.  I didn't use Live View for focus, just an AF focus point and then a timer.  Said AF point may have been more accurate with one lens over another because the framing of the subject was different.  There are certainly other examples I took similarly during the review process that show better sharpness.

My opinion is that sharpness would not be an issue with either of these lenses.  They are both very sharp.
6D x 2 | EOS-M w/22mm f/2 + 18-55 STM + EF Adapter| Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 | Tamron 24-70 f/2.8 VC | 35mm f/2 IS | 40mm f/2.8 | 100L | 135L | 70-300L -----OLD SCHOOL----- SMC Takumar 28mm f/3.5, Super Takumar 35mm f/3.5, SMC Takumar 55mm f/1.8, Helios 44-2 and 44-4, Super Takumar 150mm f/4

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Re: Review: Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 VC USD
« Reply #27 on: July 29, 2013, 08:13:07 AM »

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Re: Review: Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 VC USD
« Reply #28 on: July 29, 2013, 08:58:06 AM »
Here's another narrow depth of field shot that helps show what the lens is capable of:


Flowers for Mama by Thousand Word Images by Dustin Abbott, on Flickr
6D x 2 | EOS-M w/22mm f/2 + 18-55 STM + EF Adapter| Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 | Tamron 24-70 f/2.8 VC | 35mm f/2 IS | 40mm f/2.8 | 100L | 135L | 70-300L -----OLD SCHOOL----- SMC Takumar 28mm f/3.5, Super Takumar 35mm f/3.5, SMC Takumar 55mm f/1.8, Helios 44-2 and 44-4, Super Takumar 150mm f/4

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Re: Review: Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 VC USD
« Reply #29 on: August 01, 2013, 08:41:14 AM »
Here's a Q @ A (somewhat) that I thought that I would share for others that might have the same question:

"Message Body:
Great review on what seens to be a nice alternative to a crowded and somewhat pricey market. I've personally been considering the Canon 70-200 f4.0 IS or 70-300 L but know would add this to the list. The question I'd have is if you'd recommend this or the 70-300 L (which you've also given a strong recommendation for)? I primarily use a Canon 6D and do mostly travel/landscape stuff for personal but have also recently started venturing into wedding/event stuff as a 2nd shooter."

---------(My Response)
   Thanks for the nice feedback.  Unfortunately your question is somewhat complicated by two divergent purposes.  If your interest was only in the travel/landscape, I would definitely recommend the 70-300L.  It is incredibly sharp and is fairly compact when not zoomed out.

If you are getting into doing some event work, however, the 70-200 VC becomes a more attractive option.  The 70-300L will require 2-3 times more light, depending on focal length, although the 6D is very capable of providing that kind of light.  What the 70-300L won't provide in the same way is the ability to blur out backgrounds and make your subject pop.

It's a tough call, and one that you will ultimately have to make for yourself.  What will benefit you more - an event lens or a travel lens?  What would get more use? 

______________________________________________________________



6D x 2 | EOS-M w/22mm f/2 + 18-55 STM + EF Adapter| Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 | Tamron 24-70 f/2.8 VC | 35mm f/2 IS | 40mm f/2.8 | 100L | 135L | 70-300L -----OLD SCHOOL----- SMC Takumar 28mm f/3.5, Super Takumar 35mm f/3.5, SMC Takumar 55mm f/1.8, Helios 44-2 and 44-4, Super Takumar 150mm f/4

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Re: Review: Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 VC USD
« Reply #29 on: August 01, 2013, 08:41:14 AM »