WOW!! Tamron 28-75mm f/2.8 is sharp!


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Mar 20, 2009
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Orange County, CA
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This is such a huge surprise. My buddy bought this lens for his D90 and realized it's isn't wide enough for him, so he sold it to me for $300. Pretty much brand new condition. After a few days of shooting, I was astonished by it's IQ. This lens is VERY sharp even at f2.8. I couldn't believe how well it performed. Here are some example of this lens against my Nikon 80-200 f/2.8.

All image was shot RAW then ACR default with no addition sharpening. Cropped at 100%. The tree was about 40-50ft away.

Tamron f/2.8 center @75mm

Nikon f/2.8 center @ 80mm

Tamron f/2.8 Corner @ 75mm

Nikon f/2.8 Corner @ 80mm

The Nikon is a tad sharper but not by much. The CA level on the tamron is much better though. Remember this is blown up at 100%. You really can't notice the difference when view anything less.
Here are the same images shot with f/4

Tamron center

Nikon center

Tamron Corner

Nikon Corner
Overall, I am VERY satisfied with this lens. I tested it against my Nikon 35mm f/2 prime and I'm sad to say, but the tamron @ f2.8 just blew the 35mm prime @ f/2. It's not till f2.8 on the 35prime is where they are VERY close. I also read many review saying that this lens focuses extremely slow. I feel like that's a bit exaggerated. I have the version with the built in motor and I can say that it's not THAT slow. It's hard to explain the speed of it, but I can tell you it's faster than the Nikon 50 f/1.4G. It's about as fast as the Nikon 18-105mm kit lens. It's perfectly usable for me and most importantly, it's accurate. Even at $499(amazon, BHphoto) it's still worth every penny IMHO. Who said FX lens are expensive!
These are great examples. I am going to be getting a copy of this lens. eithe new from TriState for 370 shipped or used.

Actually the sharpness difference seems dramatic to me. Though nikon is 4x as much used so I would expect nothing less. What I find most disturbing though is the muddy OOF areas in your very first photos at the top right of the frame.

On the second set of images look at the CA to the left of the numbers on the sign in both. You can clearly see the Nikon also performs better in the CA area as well.

Though I think the differences are more dramatic than you do for $250-300 used you really can't beat it. I'm still planning on picking one of these up.
IMO there is no comparison at 2.8, but at f/4 the lens looks great. congrats on the buy!

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