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Tamron 28-75mm f2.8 XR Di Zoom AF

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Reviews Views Date of last review
175 341347 Jun 16, 2010
Recommended By Average Price
85% of reviewers $357.83
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
7.96
9.21
8.6
28-75mm

Specifications:
The most compact and lightest in the history of fast zoom lenses. Thanks to the revolutionary downsizing "XR" technology employed by Tamron in the development of high-power zoom lenses such as the 28-200mm and 28-300mm, the dramatic compactness that makes this lens the world's smallest and lightest is achieved. Its compactness makes it look and feel like an ordinary standard zoom lens, yet the versatility that a fast constant maximum aperture offers will definitely reshape your photographic horizons.


 


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gabrielma
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Registered: Jul 6, 2003
Location: United States
Posts: 2
Review Date: Jul 3, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 9 

Pros: Reasonably priced, lightweight, comes with lens hood, fast focusing for a non-USM lens. Constant f/2.8 aperture throughout whole zoom range.
Cons:
Zoom ring is backwards (opposite way from Canon lenses)

Constant f/2.8 aperture throughout the zoom range, is sharp wide-open, and for about $300-400? Yes, please.

Perhaps Tamron may be guilty just like Canon and Sigma are of letting some bad copies slide through, but I got a good copy; a very very good copy. It is sharp wide open at both wide and long ends.

It is a bit heavier than the other permanent lens in my bag, the 17-40 L, and lighter than the one it is replacing, the 28-135 IS; when you zoom to 75mm, it's rather long, but it's not too long; about the size of the Tamron 75-300 LD collapsed.

The bokeh is not as good as Canon's found in its best lenses in the same range, but it is also not bad at all --rather neutral. The blur itself is very pleasing.

I would not replace high-end glass with this lens if you already own, for example, the Canon 24-70 L and are already used to its results, but I would highly recommend it --no doubt-- if you're on a budget, or even as a back-up to your expensive glass.

It's not the greatest lens ever built, but it is very impressive considering the price and weight (all that conventional glass that's been substituted!). I'm very happy with my copy.


Jul 3, 2005
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wepwawet
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Registered: Jun 30, 2005
Location: France
Posts: 0
Review Date: Jun 30, 2005 Recommend? no | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 2 

Pros: Sharp @ 75mm stopped down, low distortion, good contrast.
Cons:
Dire frontfocus @ 28mm. Unacceptably soft @ f/2.8. Focus ring not very smooth on one sample. Slow AF.

I bought this lens after reading the rave reviews it got, to replace the cheap AF Nikkor 28-80mm G on my D70, and had two copies of it, both of which were really bad.
I ordered the first one from an online shop. It proved unable to focus correctly on objects farther than 2m away (massive front-focus) ! This was especially true at 28mm, and vanished at around 60mm. The focus could be off by so much as 100m when focussing on very distant subjects. Strangely, focus was accurate under 2m or so... Pictures taken at f/2.8 also seemed quite soft. I returned it and got another one from a local store.
The second copy was better, but still had noticeable front-focus at wide angle, although much less than the first. Softness at f/2.8 was still unacceptable though, and the focus ring rotation was not very smooth. Pictures from my cheapo 28-80 actually looked much better. I returned this copy as well, and will not bother with this lens anymore.
Maybe I was unlucky twice, as lots of people seem happy with the lens, but finding a good copy is NOT worth the hassle. QC at Tamron is unacceptable.
NB: I test all my lenses for focus accuracy, so the problem definitely comes from the lens and not the camera!


Jun 30, 2005
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ivo_marc
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Registered: Jun 24, 2005
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 0
Review Date: Jun 24, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Sharpness (at all apertures), build quality, range, very good optical quality in general, cheap, relatively light-weight, nice 'carry around' lens. Accurate and reliable AF.
Cons:
One can be disappointed that the AF isn't "Canon-USM lightning fast" (minor con), the focus-ring turns, albeit not at the front, so your polirizer does not turn. You easily / frequently put your finger on the turning focus ring though. (a more m

Very well built lens. Not like a tank, as a Canon "L", but it comes pretty close. It feels heavy when you first hold it. You expect al lot less weight from the looks of it.

Optical performance is just outstanding. Get your hands on a copy, shoot some test shots and see for yourself. Absolutely matches the far more expensive "L" series Canon zoom-lenses, in about the same range. No signs of CA, no vignetting detected at 1.6x crop, e very tiny bit of vignetting wide open at full-frame. Nothing serious though.

A very nice range, but then that's not objective (no pun intended).

Some say it has a very slight yellow color cast (not 100% perfect coating). That may be the case, but it is hardly detectable. The pictures are beutifully saturated, sharp, very detailed, at all apertures and focal lengths. Distortion is almost totally absent (again, at the entire zoom range).

I have found it to be a real bargain. You get a shipload of value for a very reasonably price. Nothing can beat that. Well done, Tamron!


Jun 24, 2005
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max.spencer
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Registered: Jun 20, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 0
Review Date: Jun 20, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $307.85 | Rating: 10 

Pros: tack sharp at both angles, excellent colors, fast handling
Cons:

I got the Tamron for $307.85 after rebate. I got this when I ordered my D70s body. I must say that for the price it's an incredible bargain. It produces excellent pictures, is tack sharp at both ends and I see no CA, vigneting or Barrel distortion. I tested the lens from day one for back focusing or softness after reading some reviews from buyers receiving a bad one but that's not my case. Even if it was just send it back to Tamron and they will calibrate it for you. This happened with the Sigma 70-300 APO super II. It was to cry for when it arrived. I just couldn't get one sharp or focused picture. I send it back to Sigma and 1 week later it came back. Sharp and no more back focusing. The way it should have been from the start. Anyway, the Tamron is my most used lens. It's hard to get a bad picture with it unless your exposure is off. I highly recommend this lens. For the price it's hard to beat and I do use the F2.8 a lot.

Jun 20, 2005
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NeoScales
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Registered: Jan 16, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 399
Review Date: Jun 18, 2005 Recommend? no | Price paid: $389.00 | Rating: 6 

Pros: Good built quality and the price is right.
Cons:
Very soft on my 350D unless stopped down past f4.

Iíve been drawn to this lens for sometime. Its great reviews and many of the images Iíve seen had me sold. After shooting some images inside and then reviewing them on the computer, I was shocked. Theyíre unacceptably soft (not just one and not only wide open either). I wonít keep this lens and I donít think Iíll venture another copy. What a disappointment for what should have been a great lens.

So the search goes on...Sigma 24-70mm DG perhaps.



Jun 18, 2005
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wanderer8
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Registered: Mar 13, 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 0
Review Date: Jun 17, 2005 Recommend? no | Price paid: $339.00 | Rating: 4 

Pros: Light weight, price
Cons:
Very soft wide open.

I bought this lens based on the good reviews I read. I was aware of the widely reported QC issue of this lens before I purchased it. But I was ready to take a gamble. Unfortunately, I lost. The image quality was ok above f5.6 but there is a sharp drop in sharpness at f2.8. At 28mm, it was not too bad but it was very soft at 75mm f2.8 and worst at 50mm f2.8. It was like shooting through a cheese cloth as another reviewer put it. The convenience that this lens brings is not worth it for what I want to do. I would rather stick with my 17-40L and change to my 50 f1.4 or 70-200 f4 when necessary. I returned the lens.

Jun 17, 2005
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ctn68600
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Registered: Dec 30, 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 1
Review Date: Jun 17, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $364.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Sharp, solidly built, sharp, fast auto-focus, and sharp. 2.8 is better than I was hoping for and 4.0 is...ah, sharp.
Cons:
None.

Bought this lens based on the Photo.net review (http://www.photo.net/equipment/tamron/28_75_Di/) and forum comments here and dpreview.com. Wanted 2.8 and wide angle.

Lens feels solid by itself and great on the 20d. Focus is fast and accurate. Best of all I am amazed at how sharp the pictures are. Handheld, f/2.8, iso 1600, 1/25 and its sweet.

Thanks Tamron for a great lens.


Jun 17, 2005
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frag
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Registered: May 11, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 855
Review Date: Jun 16, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 7 

Pros: Light, quick focus, good contrast and color
Cons:
Blurry photos wide open on images greater than 20 feet away

I may up the rating once I get the lens back from Tamron. I just received it today and took some shots at f2.8, f4, and f5.6. All of the 2.8 shots were out of focus (not soft, but out of focus). They almost looked like you were shooting through cheesecloth. Shots of the same subject at f4 were much better and outstanding at f5.6. The shots that were in focus are spectacular. I'm confident that once I get the lens back from Tamron I'll be able to give a much higher rating. But since it had to go to the shop that's all I can do for now....

Jun 16, 2005
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captben31
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Registered: Jun 16, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 0
Review Date: Jun 16, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $354.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Price, Better than average build quality, lightweight, SHARP AS A TACK (even at 2.8), smooth focus/zoom rings, excellent contrast
Cons:
ABSOLUTELY NONE!

Let me just begin by saying that I know there have been posts regarding Tamron quality control issues with the optics, but I for one just received a perfect copy of the lens so this review will be based on a good copy of the lens.

After doing alot of research for a nice lens to take on my honeymoon in Hawaii and compliment my Canon XT, I decided to take a chance with the Tamron 28-75mm XR DI. I was hoping and praying that I got a good copy and I have to say, I was very fortunate. Supposedly 1 in 8 are bad, so I guess it's time to go out and play the lottery while my luck is still hot.

I ran 4 tests...news print, outdoor scenery, action shot (dog), and some flower portrait shots. Been doing photography for 15 years and I'd be able to tell right away if something was wrong.

1. Build Quality/First Impression-

Obviously not L series battle-worthy, but the build quality is Top Notch for a lens under $1,000. Although lightweight, it has a nice weighty feel to it.

2. Focus and Zoom rings-

Smooth as butter.....Again, nice feel to them. Rubberized rings for good grip. No complaints of "stickyness" as in other posts. Very accurate feel to focus

3. Autofocus issues-

NONE. Read posts about autofocus being slow and noisy. No problems here. AF was JUST AS FAST as the stock lens with no searching. It locked on the target right away. AF did have more noise than the stock 18-55mm canon lens, but not enough for it to be remotely an issue.

4. PICTURE QUALITY-

Most important aspect...TACK SHARP! Did I say tack sharp? I took a picture of my dog and when cropped @ 100%, I could count single strands of fur on his face, as well as all the little scent nodules on his nose. It's sharp from 2.8 on up. I have no complaints. Corner to corner was as sharp too.

Color was dead on accurate...Best I've seen since my bother in laws older canon 28-75mm L series. Everything seems to jump out at you.

No flare.

No Barrel Distortion.

Excellent bokeh!

To sum it all up, if you get a good copy, you will have NONE of the issues that are posted on here! NONE! If it had a different paint job and had Canon 28-75 L printed on it, you would never know the difference in picture quality.

You will have the best lens, in my opinion, for under $1299.



Jun 16, 2005
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Chris39
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Registered: May 29, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 11
Review Date: Jun 13, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $400.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Price, f2.8, compact, accurate AF
Cons:
28mm distortion, small filter size. Hunting focus at low light, Tamron color

Good for its price and image quality. Compare to L24-70 better AF accuracy, better CA control. My copy is sharp at 2.8 all range cover. I am lucky thank Lord.

Color is warmer than Canon L. Glass quality is not as good as L but acceptable. AF at low light is hunting not as fast as L lens. But I have to say this lens beat the three L I tried for its overall quality at f2.8. No use if AF is fast but wrong. Extreme condition test is fine. Nearly can tell the difference compared to L.

Good copy is absolute a good choice. QC problem not only happened to Tamron but also Canon. My experiences with Canon told me never trust too much the brand name and the price. You will not pay 200% more for un-guaranteed 7-10% improvement. Especially this zoom range at f2.8 you just focus around 25-50% area of the whole image.

Try this lens and save money for prime lens if you need better image quality or other zoom lens.






Jun 13, 2005
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bkhorii
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Registered: May 16, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 119
Review Date: Jun 8, 2005 Recommend? no | Price paid: $330.00 | Rating: 4 

Pros: Fast aperture and useful range on a 20D
Cons:
Poor QC. My copy was very soft

Bought this with the 20D kit and EF70-200 f/2.8 IS from B&H. Focus was noticeably slower with a greater tendancy to hunt than the EF-S 18-55mm (non USM version). Ran simple newspaper sharpness tests on all three lenses (MLU, both AF and Manual Focus). Tamron was unacceptable. Far worse than the $70 kit lens at 28mm. At f/2.8, the Tamron was low contrast and fuzzy. At f/4.0 and 5.6 the contrast improved dramatically, but the sharpness was still lower than the kit lens.

Given the raves about this lens, I must have gotten a truly bad copy. But rather than make UPS rich, I decided to cut my loses and send it back to B&H for a refund.


Jun 8, 2005
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imagem
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Registered: May 12, 2005
Location: Portugal
Posts: 4
Review Date: Jun 2, 2005 Recommend? no | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 4 

Pros: Price, light weight, zoom range
Cons:
Contrast and autofocus

After reading so many raving reviews on this lens, I am quite disapointed with its image quality. It lacks contrast and the autofocus is a mess in low light conditions. Sharpness is good but no more than ok if you crop your photos to 100%. Is this a lemon copy? Maybe. But I not willing to send it back for calibration over and over. Sent it back. Asked for a refund. Bought a Canon 28-70 F/2.8 L.

Jun 2, 2005
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Tim Wild
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Registered: Nov 16, 2004
Location: New Zealand
Posts: 1613
Review Date: Jun 1, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $389.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Sharp even at F2.8, goes down to F32, good build quality, excellent value
Cons:
Focusing speed could be faster, but it's not bad.

This lens hasn't given me a single problem, it's my workhorse lens, and stays on the camera 80% of the time. I use it at F2.8 a lot, it's sharp even wide open. I'd like a faster focusing motor, but it's not too bad, it's faster than non-USM canon lenses, but not as fast as proper USM lenses.

Jun 1, 2005
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wastingtape
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Registered: Feb 26, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 70
Review Date: May 31, 2005 Recommend? no | Price paid: $275.00 | Rating: 7 

Pros: On paper this would be the perfect hobbiest walk-around lens: light weight, great zoom range, relatively fast (f/2.8), "macro" close focus, included lens hood, metal lens mount
Cons:
sharpness, especially at f/2.8

Much to the recommendation of the folks over at dpreview.com forums, and the reviews here on Fred Miranda, i purchased this lens about 4 to 5 months ago to go along with my brand new 20D since i had been told the kit lens was a piece of crap.

On paper this seemed like the ideal lens for the reasons I listed above. And to it's credit it is a good lens to start on, with a good zoom range and a fixed aperature of f/2.8 which is a major improvement from the kit lens.

Having said that though, i was really disapointed with the sharpness, color, and contrast that this lens produced. I used it for aproximatly 9000-10,000 shots. Looking back on them i felt that something was missing as far as image quality was concerned. I did a side by side lens comparasion test with this lens and my kit lens, and the kit lens consistently was ahead by a noticable margin (except in sharpness).

I would say for the price it's ok, however, for just a little bit more you could purchase 2 canon prime lenses, which are faster and have better color/contrast to fill this range instead.

I realize that i could just have a lemon copy of this lens. Interestingly though, a friend who also has this lens thought the same thing about his copy as well. I've read online a lot (and as seen here on FM) some people compare this lens to canon "L" quality. I suppose they're lucky. :-P


May 31, 2005
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mg98
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Registered: Mar 24, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 0
Review Date: May 19, 2005 Recommend? | Price paid: $360.00

Pros: Clearly sharper and better contrast than Canon 17-40 f/4.0L at 35mm, f/5.6 in newsprint test; slight advantage at 28mm, f/5.6. A best buy versus Canon "L" lenses. f/2.8 is obviously nice to have.
Cons:
Slower and noisier focussing than Canon 17-40 f/4.0L, zoom ring quite "sticky" and slow.

This is a followup review. I had a different version of this lens previously and it didn't measure up in my tests. This time, I compared it against another Canon zoom lens...the 17-40 f/4.0L, a very popular and highly-rated lens...on my Canon 20D @ 100 iso. I really like the performance and "feel" of the 17-40, so I thought if the Tamron 28-75 could measure up in quality to the 17-40, it was certainly worth $360 and would give me an affordable midrange zoom. I did a limited test...f/5.6 (because I use this aperture a lot) at 28mm and 35mm. I photographed the print on a map from a few feet away. I took 3-4 shots per lens + focus length and selected the best quality image at each lens + focus length. Center sharpness was nearly indistinguishable at 28mm; however, edge sharpness went to the Tamron. At 35mm, the Tamron actually bested the Canon in both center and edge sharpness by a noticeable amount. The difference was enough to make me question whether my Canon should be recallibrated...it was that much of a difference. I previously ran the same test (map test @ f/5.6) with my 17-40 vs. the 24mm f/2.8 Canon prime and found center sharpness quite comparable between the two...so I'm inclined to think that my 17-40 is probably fine; the Tamron was just that good..!

May 19, 2005
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okipaquin
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Registered: Mar 12, 2005
Location: Canada
Posts: 88
Review Date: May 19, 2005 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $375.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: color, wieght, f/2.8, cheap
Cons:
none that I've seen so far, except maybe a little low-light focus hunting

I've had this lens for about 3 months and have taken some of my best pictures with it. I have a canon 10-22 EF-S lens and this lens has better color and contrast than that one - and edges it out in sharpness as well. This lens is on my camera 80% of the time and I can always count on it to deliver crisp, clean images throughout the focal range.

The footer on this lens says that its a "macro" and I think it's mininum focusing distance is pretty good, as well as its sharpness for closeups - but the working focal length (between the subject and the front of the lens) is pretty small, so keep that in mind. The bokeh on this lens, however, is very pleasing and the f/2.8 makes for a pleasantly small DOF for closeup photos.

I've not used the canon 24-70L yet, but if it beats out this lens it must be a pretty darned good lens.

highly recommended to anyone needing this focal length zoom.


May 19, 2005
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†††



Tamron 28-75mm f2.8 XR Di Zoom AF

Buy from B&H Photo
Reviews Views Date of last review
175 341347 Jun 16, 2010
Recommended By Average Price
85% of reviewers $357.83
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
7.96
9.21
8.6
28-75mm


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