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Tamron 17-50mm F/2.8 XR Di II LD Aspherical [IF]

Buy from B&H Photo
Reviews Views Date of last review
189 391442 Dec 9, 2013
Recommended By Average Price
87% of reviewers $411.50
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
8.09
9.32
8.7
1750diII

Specifications:
Di II: Lenses are designed for exclusive use on digital cameras with smaller-size imagers and inherit all of the benefits of our Di products. These lenses are not designed for conventional cameras and digital cameras with image sensors larger than 24mm x 16mm.



The SP AF17-50mm F/2.8 is a lightweight, compact, fast standard zoom lens designed exclusively for digital SLR cameras, expanding the product concept of the popular SP AF28-75mm F/2.8 zoom lens.



In addition, portrait shots are made beautiful with the natural out-of-focus effect characteristic provided by the fast F/2.8 aperture. Additionally, a broader photographic expression through the use of faster shutter speeds as a result of the maximum aperture offers enhanced photographic pleasure. The lens boasts one of the best close-up shooting performances in the class of fast standard zoom lenses designed exclusively for digital cameras and featuring an F/2.8 maximum aperture throughout the entire zoom range, to ensure stress-free photographic shots at all focal lengths and distances.

Model A016
Lens Construction (Groups/Elements) 13/16
Angle of View 7845'-3111' (APS-C size equivalent)
Type of Zooming Rotation
Diaphragm Blade Number 7 (Circular apertures)
Minimum Aperture F/32
Minimum Focus Distance 10.6in.(0.27m)
Macro Magnification Ratio 1:4.5 (at f=50mm MFD 0.27m)
Filter Diameter 67
Weight 430g (15.2oz)
Diameter x Length 2.9 x 3.2in.
(74.0 x 81.7mm)
Accessory Flower shaped lens hood
Mount Canon AF, Sony/Maxxum AF-D, Nikon AF-D


 


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poisonpill
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Registered: Apr 13, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 1948
Review Date: Mar 29, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $380.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Extremely sharp. Great image quality. Compact and light!
Cons:
I dont like how practically the entire body is a zoom ring! Makes it annoying to remove the lens. Using the lock is one step too many when it's just plain unnecessary to make the zoom ring so large. Also no internal motor (AFS) which makes the focusing a tad noisier.

I was reading here and there on several forums about this lens. I was extremely skeptical at first as I always equated Tamron with the stinkiest of the big 3 third party lenses (Sigma & Tokina being the other two). However I saw a review site with the MTF curves and they were astounding. Then I saw a guy's in-depth comparison between this Tamron and the stalwart Nikkor 17-55mm. To my surprise they were both equal!

The Nikon 17-55mm was of course almost triple the price of this Tamron. Sure it may be better built, but I could buy three Tamrons for that price. Also I don't know how you shoot, but I could do without having Nikon's 10 pound lens on the front of my camera -- especially at this walk-around focal length!

My first wedding with this lens had me shocked. Shocked that I had to hit a whole lot of photos with a layer of blurring because they were too sharp. Seriously, out-of-camera photos looked like I had already applied an unsharp mask to them.

Corner sharpness is not 100% perfect, but neither is the Nikon's 17-55mm. It would be unusual for this focal length to have edge to edge sharpness anyway.

Bokeh is great. No complaints there.

As I wrote on top, I have no idea why Tamron makes the whole body of the lens a zoom ring. It really makes swapping out lenses harder than it needs to be. I'm sure once I get used to using the zoom lock it won't be a problem, but for now it's a bit annoying.

Anyway, highly recommended.


Mar 29, 2007
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godfreyz
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Registered: Feb 3, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 1010
Review Date: Mar 29, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $409.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Very sharp right out of the box.
Cons:

Very sharp lens. It is a little noisy focussing but not bad enough to be annoying. Great lens for the price.

Mar 29, 2007
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yido
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Registered: Sep 11, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 812
Review Date: Mar 28, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $430.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Optics and price
Cons:
so so build feel, AF noisy

As said, great optics with sharp center and corners. Good control of CA.
Build quality is so so, AF is fast but noisy.

Definitely worth the cost if optics if your main concern.


Mar 28, 2007
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traveler
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Registered: Jan 8, 2002
Location: United States
Posts: 3419
Review Date: Mar 21, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $435.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Fast and accurate to focus Nice light but solid build Amazing price for pro optics
Cons:
not a SWM but it focuses so fast I don't notice

I was fortunate to get my D200 around the same time this lens was released. I sold off a 18-200VR as it simply was not great enough for me in the corners. I decided to go with a 17-50mm range lens and complement it with a 70-300vr. My decision was a good one and has worked out nicely. The 17-50 f2.8 XR DI is instant to focus, exposes correctly, and behaves perfectly in every other way. I certainly see NO compelling reason to pay the $1200 for the Nikon equivalent as it has NO real performance benefit over this model. I tried them both in store and it made NO sense to go with the Nikon in this case. I've had pretty good luck with several select Tamron's in the past. This was has NOT disappointed.......I got mine from Canoga Camera and they are great. NO opened box like some vendors in New York that are respected but shall remain nameless..........

Mar 21, 2007
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donutley
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Registered: Mar 28, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 415
Review Date: Mar 21, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $450.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Sharp, fast, smooth zoom ring, well-balanced. A very competent lens for the money.
Cons:
None.

I thought Tamron would be hard-pressed to ever beat the bang-for-the-buck of the 28-75/2.8, but they did with this great lens! It feels better, is built a bit better, and is actually sharper. Even the whining focus motor adds a little fun. Recommended with no reservations.

Mar 21, 2007
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Dede Multazam
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Registered: Mar 19, 2007
Location: Indonesia
Posts: 0
Review Date: Mar 19, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Nice Lens for Canon EF Mount, Very Sharp, Hood Included.
Cons:

No Comment

Mar 19, 2007
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Austin Fern
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Registered: Feb 3, 2007
Location: United States
Posts: 16
Review Date: Mar 16, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $429.99 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Sharp, inexpensive, sharp, fast, sharp.
Cons:
Focus sound can be disconcerting in a quiet venue...but so can teh shutter on my 20D, build is so-so.

I had originally bought the EF 28-135 IS. I managed to get some pretty nice pictures with that lens. Circumstance allowed me to trade in the 28-135 for something else. Since I had just bought the 70-200 f/2.8 I was looking for something with a little more on the wide end.

The Tamron has been the only lens on my camera for the last week since I bought it. Very nice color and amazingly sharp. When compared to the prices of the other options in this range, this is a hands down winner of a lens.


Mar 16, 2007
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nikt
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Registered: Oct 20, 2005
Location: Australia
Posts: 5956
Review Date: Mar 15, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Price, sharpness, edge to edge performance at any aperture.
Cons:
faster and quieter would be nice, but then it probably wouldn't cost as little as it does

Should be included as the standard lens in almost every case. Some reports of it not being good enough, so make sure you buy from a reputable dealer. In my opinion, this lens has set a new standard for price / performance.

Mar 15, 2007
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maxim_me
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Registered: Sep 22, 2004
Location: Singapore
Posts: 291
Review Date: Mar 15, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 6 

Pros: Very sharp out of camera, great value for f2.8, sturdy built, none of the sigma coating, free lens hood, Great rubber grip,
Cons:
Zoom ring gearing is long, takes many turns from 17 to 50, miss balanced inner elements, left-right sharpness not equal, horrid technical support,

Had 2 copies of this lens, both had the misaligned inner lens.
The left-right sharpness of image is not the same.
If the left is sharp , the right would be blurry etc.

Mine was "assembled in China" not made in China Smile

misalignment is very obvious at f2.8, somewhat acceptable at
f5.6. This shows it self more for group shots or people who like to take pics of wall etc.

Still useable.

Image is sharp and contrasty, focus very close around till 4 in away. Good zoom grip and good AF switch over. NOne of the sigma double action thing.

Sturdy build ( ABS engineering plastic ), no Sigma's peel-off-coating, pretty light.

AF is fast enough but slightly slower than Sigma 18-50. Although it's louder but AF accuracy is better in the Tamron.

Yes, AF makes some sound but I never bothered with the sound, dont know why its some people's major concern.

Anycase, if you intend to get one, test it properly at the shop.
Technical support is nonexistence.....


Mar 15, 2007
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susi
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Registered: Sep 28, 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 2584
Review Date: Mar 14, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $379.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Very sharp, light, fast
Cons:
none

I read a lot of reviews before I purchased and have found that all the praise is deserved! Very sharp and fast in low light where I was hoping it would be. I bought this for portrait /wedding photography and it is perfect for taking in the whole room/church etc and doing it all with natural light.
Excellent price for this little shiner! Highly recommended!


Mar 14, 2007
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incdigital
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Registered: Aug 2, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 226
Review Date: Mar 14, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $340.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Very Sharp, Lightweight, Compact, Perfect range for DX sensor
Cons:
CA in high contrast areas, Build is plastic and feels plastic, AF is only "ok"...improves if used on D200 or D2X

For my needs(light compact lens that performs well) I can really look over the negative aspects of the lens. I have never bought a Tamron lens before this and after I evaluated the 17-50 I can say I would certainly buy other products from them in the future. Overall a bargain buy IMO.

Mar 14, 2007
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Ultima2003
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Registered: May 12, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 47
Review Date: Mar 14, 2007 Recommend? no | Price paid: $450.00 | Rating: 5 

Pros: Price, zoom range, and f/2.8
Cons:
soft focus. loud mechanism

While I love my Tammy 28-75, my hopes fell short on the 17-50. I took the 17-50 on vacation leaving other lenses at home for a lighter bag. I was disappointed in most all pictures at any length and aperature. Most shots were outdoors in bright Arizona sunlight at f/7-11. Shutter speeds in the 1/1000's or higher. Even with heavy sharpening they looked soft and out of focus.

With saddness I returned the lense. I was hoping for better performance and I am not highly critical.


Mar 14, 2007
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johansec
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Registered: Feb 12, 2005
Location: United States
Posts: 36
Review Date: Mar 12, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $389.00 | Rating: 7 

Pros: Sharp, good colors, fast focus, light, affordable
Cons:
Not happy with excessive CA.

I bought this lens because the 17-55 kit lens that came with my Canon 20D had very poor sharpness.

I have used this lens for about a month now. I have been happy with the auto focus and handling. The sharpness is a great improvement over the kit lens and the colors are good.

My one big disappointment is with the amount of CA. I recently went on a camping trip and a lot of the pictures I took included trees with sky behind them. I was excited about some of the pictures when I took them, but was disappointed to find that the CA was excessive enough that I couldn't correct it in Photoshop and was not able to include the photos in my portfolio.

I might try renting the comparable Canon L lens and test shoot both of them side by side and see if I am being unfair to the Tamron.


Mar 12, 2007
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Will Patterson
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Registered: Nov 6, 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 4638
Review Date: Mar 12, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: Not Indicated | Rating: 10 

Pros: Unbelieveably sharp, great color and contrast, comes with a hood
Cons:
Will only work on APS-C sensors, but that's ok with me!

This was the 3rd lens I bought for my XT. Upon receiving it I immediately did some testing on a tripod in my kitchen to see how sharp the pictures turned out. I was stunned. I honestly don't see how a lens can get any better in terms of focusing ability.

It's got a nice weight to it and balances out well on the XT, and it'll be even better on the 30D I plan on buying shortly.

If you are deciding between this and the 17-40L, get the Tamron! I'm so glad I did!!!


Mar 12, 2007
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Anders H
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Registered: Feb 10, 2007
Location: Denmark
Posts: 1
Review Date: Mar 10, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $500.00 | Rating: 10 

Pros: Cheap, sharp, decent build quality, comes with hood, light
Cons:
noisy autofocus

I love this lens. It's faily priced, delivers exelent image quality and is just nice to live with. I don't think I'll ever sell this little gem, unless I get a fullframe camera.

The only negative thing I can say about this lens is that it's got a noisy af motor, but I can easily live with that. It's still more quiet than the Pentax K10D + 18-55 smc kit lens.




Mar 10, 2007
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Steve Lundberg
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Registered: Nov 24, 2006
Location: United States
Posts: 19
Review Date: Mar 9, 2007 Recommend? yes | Price paid: $400.00 | Rating: 9 

Pros: Sharp throughout it's range, fast focusing, constant f/2.8, build quality is pretty good
Cons:
Somewhat loud autofocus motor, won't work on a full-frame body (if you decide to upgrade later, etc)

I would not hesitate to recommend this lens to someone looking at this focal length range.

It is a lot less costly than the Canon 17-55 (though the Canon adds +5mm on the long end, IS, and USM to the package). The Tamron comes with a lens hood, unlike the Canon 17-55. This is an excellent first lens for someone who purchased a crop body with no kit lens.

Picture quality is very good. It is sharp throughout, gives very nice brokeh at 2.8, with colors that pop. I have zero regrets about this lens, and highly recommend it.


Mar 9, 2007
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Tamron 17-50mm F/2.8 XR Di II LD Aspherical [IF]

Buy from B&H Photo
Reviews Views Date of last review
189 391442 Dec 9, 2013
Recommended By Average Price
87% of reviewers $411.50
Build Quality Rating Price Rating Overall Rating
8.09
9.32
8.7
1750diII


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