Customer Review

79 of 85 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Jack of All Trades, May 7, 2012
This review is from: Tamron SP 24-70mm Di VC USD Canon Mount AFA007C-700 (Model A007E) (Electronics)
I shoot general photography, which includes all sorts of activity, from restaurant outings to gardening. When I bought this lens, I had currently owned the Canon 24-70mm L mark 1, and loved that lens, except it didnt have IS, which is incredibly useful for video and low light. I found that my keeper rates have not changed going to the Tamron (if anything, it improved from great to excellent), but the sharpness had definitely improved at every focal length and aperture. I had to verify that it wasnt my imagination, so I tried a few tests on a tripod, using live view, and indeed the tamron was a tad sharper at every focal length and aperture on my full frame camera.

It's not the perfect lens though (I dont believe one exists!), it is the jack of all trades. VC is extremely competent, probably the best in the business. AF is not L fast, but fast enough that I dont miss shots, and even AI Servo works fine. The build quality is on par with the 24-105mm, very very solidly built. The bokeh does have issues(onion and a tad bit busy), but I've found them to be very minor with real world shots, and very easy to clean up. The color rendition is L level. Vignetting is kind of odd on this lens. The drop off is less overall than the mark 1, but where it actually vignettes, it's more pronounced. F2.8 is very sharp, from corner to corner, I have no hesitation shooting it wide open. There was no way I could get the canon 24-70mm Mark 1 to be as sharp as the tamron at F2.8. I was very suprised by that finding, but it is what it is.

In the end, it came down to a hard decision. Having a Canon L series lens is very comforting. You know that you've got the best tool made by the manufacturer. It had better bokeh, but was less sharp. It was built like a brick, and weighed like one too.... It didnt have VC no matter how you looked at it, and I found overall image quality slightly better on the tamron, since bokeh is mostly preferential, sharpness is not. It's not that the L is a poor performer, it's just that I found out that the Tamron is better, so I cant go back, it's no longer a logical decision if I did. I sold my L mark 1 after a few days of shooting and personal tests. Very happy with this lens.

Summary

Pros:
Sharp wide open
Build Quality
Vibration Compensation works very well
Color rendition

Cons:
Busy Bokeh
Vignetting
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Comments

Tracked by 4 customers

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Showing 1-10 of 12 posts in this discussion
Initial post: May 7, 2012 3:28:40 PM PDT
Mr AMZ says:
What body are you using this on?

In reply to an earlier post on May 7, 2012 3:43:36 PM PDT
Charlie says:
5D mark 2

Posted on May 10, 2012 3:07:52 AM PDT
Softer lenses have better bokeh than sharper lenses, well, because they're softer. Same complaint people made about the 70-200mm f/2.8 Mark II. They said the Mark I had better bokeh.
I'll take the sharper lens every time. You can always soften in post, but you can never add in detail that was never there in the first place.

In reply to an earlier post on May 10, 2012 7:16:50 AM PDT
Charlie says:
I have read the same in the past, and I agree with you, I'll take the sharper optics first because it's easier to fix bokeh, if any than try to sharpen up a picture. In real world use, I have not had to fix any bokeh issues, and I can live with slightly busy bokeh, I own a 35mm F2, and 50mm 1.8 which both get busy at times :)

In reply to an earlier post on May 16, 2012 9:23:40 AM PDT
Cinnamon says:
Thanks for the great review, Charlie! I most often shoot with the Canon 24-105L, but I'm thinking of replacing it with the 24-70 VC to benefit from a larger aperture, without having to sacrifice Image Stabilization. Since we both shoot with 5D Mark II's, can you please comment more about this lens's vignetting, especially wide open at f/2.8?

I've read online and seen test shots that show pretty bad vignetting at 2.8, but I was wondering if you could talk about your experiences with it, or possibly even post test shots. If shots at 2.8 - which I'll probably be shooting at most often - are prone to extreme vignetting, I might have to think twice about this lens. Do you think the vignetting is too extreme on a 5D Mark II? I know vignetting can be corrected in post, but what are your impressions of vignetting straight out of the camera? I'd love to hear your thoughts? Thanks once again for the helpful review!

In reply to an earlier post on May 16, 2012 9:53:25 AM PDT
Charlie says:
It's not really an issue to me. I've printed plenty, and dont even correct any of the vignetting issues. If underexposed, they will show up more, otherwise, properly exposed shots have little problem for me. I have a bunch of shots on my flickr account http://www.flickr.com/photos/charlie617/
you can judge visually if that will be a problem for you or not, none of the photos have vignetting correction. A lot of the shots during May 3rd are shot indoors low light F2.8. Possibly one or two have been cropped for composition, but most of my album is crop free. You can see the vignetting, and it may or may not be an issue depending on user.

Posted on Jul 12, 2012 1:19:49 AM PDT
D. Lac says:
great pics on your flickr account using this lens!

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 14, 2012 9:58:31 PM PDT
Charlie says:
thanks, this lens has been a joy to use. I have the utmost confidence when shooting with this thing. If composition sucks, that's on me :)

Posted on May 13, 2013 8:46:43 AM PDT
J. Kelly says:
Thanks very much for the great review!

I'm concerned about focusing speed/accuracy in low light ie wedding receptions. Would love to hear any experience you've had with that?

I'm shooting w/ the 5D mk 3 body fyi.

Cheers, j

Posted on Dec 17, 2013 2:47:38 PM PST
JY says:
@Charlie

You uploaded a pic (flowers) where you compare a corner crop from Canon with a center crop from Tamron.
What that a misspelling, or intentional? I fail to see the point of a corner/center comparison?
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