Optical Limits: Tamron 70-180mm f/2.8 Di III VXD – Relatively Compact, Light-Weight, And Affordable

Optical limits released its review of the Tamron 70-180mm f/2.8 Di III VXD, which you can read in full here or read the important parts of the conclusion below:

While we have seen similar lenses from Canon, the Tamron 70-180mm f/2.8 Di III VXD is a refreshingly different approach to a fast tele zoom lens in Sony E-mount. With activated image auto-correction, it is capable of producing beautiful results. It’s very sharp across the image frame in the lower to mid-range and at least the center sharpness is very impressive at 180mm. Image distortions are nicely corrected and there’s just a tad of vignetting at f/2.8 in this case. Lateral CAs are also well controlled. Some flaws become obvious with deactivated auto-correction – namely high distortions and vignetting towards the long end but then few users are probably still using uncorrected images these days. The quality of the bokeh is typical for many lenses in this class. Out-of-focus highlights can be a bit busy and the foreground blur is not ideal… the Tamron lens is one of the very few lenses producing minimal bokeh fringing (LoCAs).

The build quality is on a very decent level. Typical for Tamron lenses, there’s an emphasis on low weight rather than (supposedly) super-tough materials – they are using plastics except for the lens mount… it’s a really precisely assembled lens with no wobbly parts even in a fully extended zoom position. Tamron implemented some sealing against moisture but there’s no statement about dust protection… There’s a transport lock but that’s about it. The AF/MF has to be set on the camera and there’s no image stabilizer. The Tamron is not a super-tele so the in-camera IS should usually be “good enough”…

Overall it’s awesome to see that such lenses can be relatively compact and light-weight – and affordable, too. Kudos to Tamron for providing such an interesting lens. Highly recommended!

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Tamron 70-180mm f/2.8 Di III RXD FE: B&H Photo / Amazon / Adorama

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