photo sharing and upload picture albums photo forums search pictures popular photos photography help login
Tom Conelly | profile | all galleries >> Camera/Lens evaluations >> Tamron 18-250 lens: First Impressions (2007) tree view | thumbnails | slideshow

Tamron 18-250 lens: First Impressions (2007)

The Tamron 18-250 is a relatively new lens that some photographers are interested in as a single 'walk around lens' that covers the range from wide angle to mid telephoto. It is not compatible with full-frame DSLRs but is designed for the APS-C sized sensors used in digital SLRs such as the Canon 30D or digital rebel.

Several early reviews have argued that it is a very good quality lens at a reasonable price (about $500), but that there are inevitable compromises when a single zoom lens attempts to cover such a wide range. In particular, there are concerns about distortion at the wide end and image softness in the 150-250 mm range, especially since the lens does not have image stabilization.

For the most part, my early experience with the Tamron 18-250 agrees with these reviews. For travel, or similar circumstances when carrying and changing multiple lens is not desirable, this lens is a capable substitute. Colors are good and well saturated. Focus is generally accurate and fast in good light. All this in a lens that weighs only about 430 g. I really appreciate not needing to carry the weight of multiple lenses or the constant changing of lenses while walking around. It is also great to be able to cover both wide angle scenes such as landscapes or cityscapes and also to zoom in on details with a single lens.

But there is indeed significant distortion from about 18-28 mm (though this can often be corrected in software) and, compared to my Canon 17-40 f4 and 70-200 f4 lenses, the images are often softer. At the 150-250 mm end it does seem important to not only keep the shutter speeds high but also to set the aperture to at least f8. As a result, it is often necessary to increase the iso to levels higher than would be necessary for faster lenses. Because of these limitations, you might want to also look at the newly released Sigma 18-200 lens with optical stabilization.

I've tried to include a wide range of typical 'travel' images that were taken in June 2007. The first page of the gallery is from the Pittsburgh area in western Pennsylvania, while page two is the Milwaukee area in Wisconsin.

All of these images were handheld and have been edited in Adobe Lightroom and/or Photoshop Elements and, of course, have been reduced in size and compressed for posting on Pbase. The editing in some cases has included distortion correction (in Photoshop Elements with PT lens plug-in, not always completely successful) and noise reduction has been applied to some images when I had to use high iso.

Hopefully, these photos will give a realistic sense of what the Tamron 18-250 can achieve in the hands of a typical amateur photographer.
previous pagepages 1 2 ALL next page
img_1575_std.jpg img_1638_std.jpg img_1714_std.jpg img_1930_std.jpg img_1935_std.jpg
img_1938_std.jpg img_2010_std.jpg img_2052_std.jpg img_2059_std.jpg img_2063_std.jpg
img_2071_std.jpg img_2079_std.jpg img_2090_std.jpg img_2118_std.jpg img_2163_std.jpg
img_2206_std.jpg img_2237_std.jpg img_2249_std.jpg img_2265_std.jpg img_2290_std.jpg
img_2305_std.jpg img_2314_std.jpg img_2335_std.jpg img_2336_std.jpg img_2366_std.jpg
img_2383_std.jpg img_2408_std.jpg img_2411_std.jpg img_2412-b_std.jpg img_2413_std.jpg
img_2444_std.jpg img_2450_std.jpg img_2512_std.jpg img_2516_std.jpg img_2522_std.jpg
img_2602_std.jpg img_2610_std.jpg img_2630-nrni_std.jpg img_2634_std.jpg img_2648_std.jpg
img_2674_std.jpg img_2691_std.jpg img_2717-b_std.jpg img_2725_std.jpg img_2741_std.jpg
img_2781_std.jpg img_2797_std.jpg img_2834_std.jpg img_2837_std.jpg
previous pagepages 1 2 ALL next page