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Customer Review

671 of 710 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good value - useful all-in-one lens, August 9, 2005
This review is from: Tamron Auto Focus 18-200mm f/3.5-6.3 XR Di II LD Aspherical (IF) Macro Zoom Lens for Canon Digital SLR Cameras (Model A14E) (Camera)
Like a baseball player with a decent batting average, some power, a little bit of speed and fairly good fielding ability, the Tamron 18-200 lens won't be an All-Star any time soon because it does not excel at any one thing. But, like that $500k/year utility infielder, this lens DOES provide a very good all-around value for what it is. Does it compare to a prime lens at either end? Heck, no. Is it a good lens to use when you can't carry a wide choice of lenses with you? Absolutely.

I've been using this lens on my 20D quite a bit and have only a few minor gripes: it tends to hunt for AF (especially as you get closer to 200mm), and it's not the quietest lens I've used.

An earlier reviewer mentioned that it maxed out at about 160mm. My own analysis shows that it is short of 200mm, but not by that large an extent; I found it much closer to 190. Still, there's no doubt that these zoom lenses with extreme ranges like this have a built-in fudge factor.

Another reviewer described the problems he encountered when using two screw-on filters. There aren't too many primes that I've used that will avoid vignetting when using two filters. Heck, my 10-22 can barely handle one extra-slim. As for darkening the image - well, you're adding two more pieces of glass to a highly-complex lens assembly... just asking for trouble.

As for the concern regarding blur at longer focal lengths, I highly recommend the use of a tripod. I noticed the exact same thing - blur and lack of sharpness - at lengths over 100mm. Keep the old rule of thumb in mind - if you're shooting handheld, your shutter speed should be no slower than the inverse of your focal length. A 200mm lens on a 20D (or Rebel XT for that matter), is an effective 320mm - I wouldn't recommend shooting any slower than 1/500 at max zoom with this lens - UNLESS you're using a tripod. When I mounted it firmly, I got great shots with no blur.

Keep in mind that you get what you pay for here: the convenience of a wide-angle, normal, and moderate telephoto lens in one piece. If you're shooting professionally, or need absolutely perfect images, then carry the three or four lenses that this would otherwise replace in your bag. But if you want one easy-to-use, satisfactory lens, go for this one. It's a jack-of-all-trades, ace-of-none kinda deal.
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Showing 1-10 of 22 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Dec 20, 2009 6:45:15 PM PST
Just the kind of information that an amateur photographer who is considering a new digital SLR needs.

Posted on Jan 13, 2012 6:23:48 PM PST
is a good deal, but I have question
can I use it for Nikon D7000?

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 18, 2012 3:24:36 PM PST
yes, it will work fine on the d7000

Posted on Mar 7, 2012 7:25:42 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Mar 7, 2012 7:26:50 PM PST
I use this lens on all my trips and just hanging out with the kids on my D60 and D7000. I love it. One of the best purchases that I have made when it comes to freeing up my camera bag!! And I have had it for about 2 years, and it is still going strong after many, many uses.

Posted on Apr 14, 2012 4:04:04 PM PDT
R. Brown says:
I notice that this lens does not have "Image Stabilization" . . . how important is that?

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 26, 2012 11:42:24 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jul 15, 2012 4:01:12 PM PDT
Wings42 says:
R. Brown,

Image Stabilization is pretty critical at long focal lengths. As A.C. Sisto explained in the review, you can compensate for lack of image stabilization in several ways: 1) use a sturdy tripod (cheap shaky tripods are worse than no tripod), 2) up the ISO to allow for faster shutter speed in lower light (pictures get more and more grainy the higher the ISO), and/or 3) shoot at a shutter speed of at least 1/500, easy to do in bright sunlight with a low F-stop. To put this all in perspective, a clerk at Adorama Photo in New York pointed out to me that it wasn't too long ago when NO lens had image stabilization, and yet they managed to take great photos, including of moving things in poor light.

As a hiker and bird photographer, I dislike tripods, so I use a combination of low F-stop, higher ISO and faster shutter speed to "freeze" the birds with this lens. The slow focus speed is a problem with this lens for shooting birds, so I use this lens for general vacation travel and indoors, and my Nikon 55-300mm kit lens for bird photography. On vacation, if I know we're going to a park or other birding area, I'll use the Nikon lens. In cities and indoors I've been very happy with this lens.

This lens has a lot of distortion at full wide angle, but my software (Lightroom 4) perfectly corrects for that, and well as reducing the graininess at high ISO's.

As you can see, DSLR photography requires a lot of balancing and tradeoffs involving the physics of light, lenses, and sensors and cost. You can avoid thinking about these tradeoffs with a good quality point-and-shoot camera, but your best pictures with any DSLR and this lens can be far better than any point-and-shoot picture.

Posted on Jul 15, 2012 2:16:58 PM PDT
Will these lense works with canon T3i?

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 15, 2012 3:58:53 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jul 15, 2012 4:03:09 PM PDT
Wings42 says:

Yes. Just be sure that you order from the screen that specifies "Canon" in the lens description (as I did "Nikon" for use on my Nikon D5100 camera). The last time we visited New York, I bought this lens for my Brooklyn residing son's Canon T1i camera. He loves it.

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 22, 2012 12:15:14 PM PDT
I received this lense 2 days ago. It came with a lense hood. I bought a filter and attach to the lense for protection. Now my concern is the lense hood won't fit. Should I not use a filter?

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 22, 2012 3:07:52 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jul 22, 2012 5:46:04 PM PDT
Wings42 says:

The filter will not interfere with attachment of the hood. I've used up to two filters and a lens cap while attaching the lens hoods with no problem. You should always use a UV filter. Better to scratch a cheap replaceable filter than a costly lens. Also, use the lens hood most of the time. Besides blocking out light from the side to reduce flares and glare, it helps protect the lens from bangs and bumps.

To attach the lens hood:

1. Attach the lens to the camera.

2. Align the small white dot on the rear of the lens hood with the small white dot on the lens. The white dot on the lens' front is approximately in line with the "TAMRON" name on the brass band on the lens. The short flutes on the tulip shape will be lined up vertically, the long flutes horizontally.

3. Hold the hood flat on the lens so the threads on the hood engage the threads on the lens while you turn the hood to the left as you hold the camera body or back of the lens towards you. Turn until the gold "TAMRON" name on the hood lines up with the white dot on the lens. You should hear and feel a distinct click when the hood reaches the proper position.

If this doesn't work, play around with steps 2 and 3 above to get the dots lined up and keep the hood flat on the lens as you turn. Your muscles will quickly learn the proper motion.

If needed, you can always get help at a camera store. Even if they didn't sell you the lens, most shops would be glad to instruct a fellow photographer.
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