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Thread: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

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    Senior Member Quentin_Bargate's Avatar
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    Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    I have just received a new Tamron 18-200mm which, if up to scratch, would make an ideal all-purpose and travel lens, roughly 27mm-300mm equivalant on full frame 35mm format.

    However when I cam to research the lens online, I could not find much info and no thorough reviews, just some random comments. There is some publicity about the lens here. Tamron publish MTF graphs for the lens that look reasonable.

    This lens seems particularly significant because it is Tamron's first E mount offering - I assume the first of many. The focal length range duplicates that of the Sony 18-200mm but it is an entirely different optical design.

    It is a fair bit smaller and lighter than the Sony equivalent and very well made, much better than the usual superzoom plastic fantastic. For example, it has a metal body and mount and no "play" when zoomed out. It is also a tad cheaper ( the cheapest I have now found in the UK is just under £500 at Jessops)

    Here is the lens mounted on the Nex-7 (taken with a Nex-5)



    and in hand



    And a few random shots with it today



    The cappuccino shot was taken on a tripod using the 10 sec self timer, with VC turned off. It was low light so longinsh exposure needed.









    What it is or has:

    - Convenient
    - well made
    - Quiet AF
    - Good image quality. There is some CA of the more benign kind which is easily corrected in Camera raw or lightroom, etc. By "Good" I mean generally very good, much better than I had anticipated. There is some loss of contrast and edge performance at the long end but it stays sharp if properly focused in the centre. Good enough to be used with confidence in most situations.
    - Great Vibration reduction
    - relatively small and modest weight

    What it is not:

    - a replacement for the Zeiss 24mm F1.8, first because it is not quite that good, and of course, somewhat slower, nor (I assume) a replacement for those super sharp Leica goodies some have stashed around.
    Last edited by Quentin_Bargate; 21st January 2012 at 11:11.
    Quentin Bargate
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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    Thanks for you report, Quentin!

    There is no possibility that I would ever buy it (or the Sony zoom). For a super zoom it looks small (without its hood) but anything is huge compared to the NEX-7

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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    Quentin,

    Thanks. Congratulations on your new lens. (18-200 -> 27-300, of course)
    It looks like an excellent tool.
    Great shots!

    I wonder if and when DxO has a lens module for that lens?

    Regards, K-H.

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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    Quentin,
    Thanks for sharing. The shots all seem slightly soft. Is that your experience too? Have you tried the Sony 18-200 to compare?

    Please keep sharing your NEX-7 experiences!
    -Brad
    Brad Husick

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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    Quote Originally Posted by Vivek View Post
    Thanks for you report, Quentin!

    There is no possibility that I would ever buy it (or the Sony zoom). For a super zoom it looks small (without its hood) but anything is huge compared to the NEX-7
    Hi Vivek, yes, its quite big but small as you say for a superzoom. Not a lens for everyone!

    Quentin
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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    Thanks Quentin
    Looks much nicer than the Sony - I'm glad it comes up to expectations.
    Vivek - you of all people don't care what a camera looks like - actually, the NEX7 handles well with these zooms . . . . . and fit easily into the pocket . . . . . . . . . . . I've taken to sticking the lens into my coat pocket - it fits easily, and the camera body is ready to grab at short notice . . .the 24 zeiss fits nicely into the other pocket!

    Brad . . . they look okay to me, and there's one thing you can be sure of . . . if they were soft Q would be moaning about it!

    all the best

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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    Hi K-H and Brad,

    Thanks, now corrected the focal length error

    I used to use DxO but sort of fell out of love with it. I now mainly use Camera raw.

    At this image size, you can't really assess sharpness because they are downsized so much from the originals. I don't have the Sony to compare but I would not say the Tamron is soft - far from it. The teapot , cappuccino and avocat shots were shallow dof.

    Cheers
    Quentin Bargate
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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    Quote Originally Posted by jonoslack View Post
    Thanks Quentin
    Looks much nicer than the Sony - I'm glad it comes up to expectations.
    Vivek - you of all people don't care what a camera looks like - actually, the NEX7 handles well with these zooms . . . . . and fit easily into the pocket . . . . . . . . . . . I've taken to sticking the lens into my coat pocket - it fits easily, and the camera body is ready to grab at short notice . . .the 24 zeiss fits nicely into the other pocket!

    Brad . . . they look okay to me, and there's one thing you can be sure of . . . if they were soft Q would be moaning about it!

    all the best
    Hi Jono,

    very true

    I thought you were off down the pub

    Q
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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    Ahhhhhh - you mean this:



    Taken with the NEX7 indeed, but with a rather different lens (0.95 Noctilux to be precise)

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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    Thank you, Quentin - I hope to get my NEX7 within next 2 weeks and also consider to buy Tamron 18-200 .. a nice combination!

    All pictures I saw made with NEX7/Tamron are excellent.

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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    Jono

    Exactly! And that is a shot you need a fast lens for (and a Noctilux is certainly FAST!)

    Hot (hot? - not in England it isn't!) all the best with the Nex 7 when you get it. Its tough recomending lenses because our needs as photographers vary so much, but I'd certainly recommend you have a look at the Tamron. And the Zeiss. Maybe a Noctilux. Don't forget the macro (and so on......)

    Funny thing superzooms. A few years ago we went on a family vacation to Egypt and I took a Mamya ZD medium format digital camera, and a Kodak 14nx, each with various lenses. 90% of the worthwhile shots I took were with the Kodak 14nx and a Nikon 28-200 zoom. the Nikkor zoom was cheap, plasticky, but sharp (with a fair amout of distortion that needed correcting in Photoshop) and it was simply there, ready for the shot. I think the Tamron will be the same.

    Quentin
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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    Looks to be a great lens Quentin. I actually think all the pictures posted look crisp and not soft at all. Even sharper than the noctilux beer shot (hope I don't get flamed for that, and I have to admit it has many qualities that the Tamron can't match).

    Just looked at a comparison with the new 55-210 from Sony. This one is a tad more than 100 gram heavier, 5 mm thicker and 11 mm shorter. For that you get the whole range from 18-55 and will save you many lens changes so I can see this one being a much better/flexible package than the Sony.

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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    Thanks for the images. I would be really interested in a comparison with the Sony one day.
    The size of the Tamron looks more appealing IMO even though the Sony handles fine on the Nex7 as well.
    PLease keep posting images and your experience with the Tamron.

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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    Quote Originally Posted by t_streng View Post
    Thanks for the images. I would be really interested in a comparison with the Sony one day.
    The size of the Tamron looks more appealing IMO even though the Sony handles fine on the Nex7 as well.
    PLease keep posting images and your experience with the Tamron.
    Thanks, I will, weather and other matters permitting.
    Quentin Bargate
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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7



    1/13 sec, handheld, ISO1600, F/5.6, @ 52.9mm, accidentally shot as a jpeg fine, some NR.

    A glass of Lagavulin for afficianados..
    Quentin Bargate
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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    Quote Originally Posted by pegelli View Post
    Looks to be a great lens Quentin. I actually think all the pictures posted look crisp and not soft at all. Even sharper than the noctilux beer shot (hope I don't get flamed for that, and I have to admit it has many qualities that the Tamron can't match).
    Certainly not - sharp is not the way to describe a noctilux at f0.95 . . . there are plenty of ways to describe it . . . and probably there is a little bit that's sharp, but at 30cm it's going to be pretty thin (and remember, the lens wasn't designed to be used with a helicoid adapter). So - no flaming - but it does have a certain something doesn't it

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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    What a fantastic glass of Lagavulin. And in a not so fat Whisky glass as usual.
    It is congruent on your new Tamron.

    The lens looks nice, black and slim on the NEX. And convincing samples.

    Cheers

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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-5






    NEX5 + Tamron 18-200





    + Raynox 150




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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    Looking good :-) Great lens, the Tamron.
    Quentin Bargate
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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    Quote Originally Posted by Quentin_Bargate View Post


    1/13 sec, handheld, ISO1600, F/5.6, @ 52.9mm, accidentally shot as a jpeg fine, some NR.

    A glass of Lagavulin for afficianados..
    looks good!

    If you continue coming up with such nice images I might replace my Sony 18-200 with the Tamron one day.(nothing wrong with the sony so far but I would prefer the size of the Tamron.

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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    thanks for the kind comments :-)

    The ever impressive Tamron 18-200mm continues to impress me:



    Some perpective correction applied

    Quentin Bargate
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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    Who is watching who?

    Nex-7 +Tamron 18-200mm (did I mention I like this lens?!!)

    Quentin Bargate
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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    Nice ones Quentin!
    A lens to have, I can see that!

    Michiel

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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    Quentin, to me your images look perfectly sharp; any sharper and they would look fake, but I acknowledge this is a matter of taste. What is the distortion like on the wide end—always a problem with every zoom, let alone superzoom, I have used.

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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    I will be picking up my NEX7 on Monday and still debating about which lens should I get first....general purpose photography, video etc being what I would be looking to do.

    Should I get the Zeiss 24/1.8 first or should it be the Tamron 18-200 or the Sony 18-200 ? Or should I get the Zeiss and pair it with the 18-55 kit and have that tide me over for a while, until the dust settles, and then get one of these super-zooms ? I have an upcoming trip (going to a seminar where I might shoot some video etc) to Arizona and thus hope to use this quite a bit.

    A while back, I had a NEX5 along with the 18-55 and 16mm kit lenses and the LA-EA1 adapter, all of whom were gotten rid of, within a month or so of purchase, and now that some of the issues I had with the NEX system have been resolved (built-in EVF, availability of focus peaking etc), I am getting back into the NEX arena.

    Or should I just get the LA-EA2 adapter and simply use my existing A-mount lenses (24-70ZA, 85ZA, 135ZA, 50/2.8 Macro, 70-300G etc) with it, supplemented with the 24/1.8 ?

    Any thoughts appreciated. Thanks.
    A900 with a few lenses, flashes etc.

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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    Michiel, Kit, both thanks - and yes there is some distortion, but not as bad as with some superzooms - in Phososhop lens correction, say around 2%. For example, I have corrected (for distortion and perspective) the Bishop's square shot above. To be honest it not the best lens if you want absolutely accurate architecural shots with a lot of messing around, but then is the NEX even the right camera for such work?

    And Roweraay, If you have a trip coming up, the Tamron is more versatile than the Zeiss, but the Zeiss is a tad sharper and is faster. Personally I'd get the Tamron. I think the Tamron and the Sony 18-200 lenses are quite similar in trmms of sharpness but the /Tamron is usefully lighter and smaller - and comes in black! I have the LA-EA1 converter which is significantly smaller and lighter and is fine with SSM lenses like the 24-70, which is will autofocus with.

    We are all different: for me the NEX-7 plus Tamron 18-200 makes a lot more sense as a travel kit than the NEX plus LA-EA2 and hunking great A mounts lenses.
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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    Quentin, thanks for the feedback. Yes, getting the Tamron (or the Sony equivalent) makes better sense than going with a prime.....especially as an all-purpose first lens. As you pointed out, the silver color of the Sony is a big turn-off, and the Tamron thankfully comes in black. The size/weight difference is also significant between the two similarly specced products.

    If I don't have any last minute change of mind (when I actually handle the lenses in person), I will be going with the Tamron (in black of course !), when I pick up the camera tomorrow. I have asked them to put aside the Tamron (black version), the Sony 18-200 and the Zeiss 24/1.8, intending to pickup one of them tomorrow.
    A900 with a few lenses, flashes etc.

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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    Quentin, BTW, your pictures (both the camera with the lens mounted, and also the great pictures taken with the combo) are what tipped me over into seriously looking at the Tamron. I was all set to get the Sony, actually, prior to seeing this thread.

    Thanks !
    A900 with a few lenses, flashes etc.

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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    Got my NEX7 today and after a lot of hemming and hawing between the Sony 18-200, the Tamron 18-200 and the Zeiss 24/1.8, I finally came home with the Tamron. The Tamron is definitely a great lens and is clearly a better match (color-wise and size-wise) for the petite NEX7, than the Sony 18-200.

    However, the Zeiss 24/1.8 is something that I cannot get out of my mind, since it seemed to be custom made for the camera !

    I know that I will get the Zeiss and a super-zoom eventually, and it is just a matter of picking one of them up as my first lens, which in turn would be used during my upcoming trip. I just might go back to the store and swap the Tamron with the Zeiss tomorrow, if I don't change my mind again.
    A900 with a few lenses, flashes etc.

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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    Question; Does the Tamron support Sweep Panorama?

    Michiel

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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    That lens doesn´t look as big as I thought it would. I´ve recently shot the Carnival here in Brazil with a manual 70-300m and ended up with my share of out of focus photos...the fact that I was in the middle of over 1000 people moving fast didn´t help. This lens would have been perfect for such an event. I can also see my self using it for wild life up to a certain extent. One thing that I really like about my 70-300mm that neither this nor the Sony 18-200mm have is the minimum focusing distance...as I can get REALLY close (though it´s nothing a raynox won´t be able to fix).

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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    Quote Originally Posted by Quentin_Bargate View Post
    I have the LA-EA1 converter which is significantly smaller and lighter and is fine with SSM lenses like the 24-70, which is will autofocus with.
    Autofocus with LA-EA1? Is that correct?

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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    With len's which are SSM
    Joe

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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    I see, thanks

    Paul

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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    Quote Originally Posted by ecsh View Post
    With len's which are SSM
    Joe
    With all lenses that have a built-in motor, which includes the SSM and SAM of Sony, the HSM of Sigma and also the Tamron lenses with a built-in motor.

    The difference here is that the LA-EA1 will Autofocus with Contrast-Detect AF, which is of course slower than the Phase Detect AF used by a typical DSLR.

    The LA-EA2 will autofocus with ALL lenses made for the A-mount, including ALL 3rd party A-mount lenses like from Sigma, Tamron, Tokina etc. The LA-EA2 will autofocus with Phase-Detect AF, like a typical DSLR. But since it has a mirror in the light path, it will divert some of that ight to the AF sensors, just like the other SLT cameras.

    Then there are other considerations too. When shooting video, the ones that do it via the LA-EA2, would use Phase Detect AF and also have the aperture stopped down to f/3.5 (or the lens's largest aperture if it is smaller than f/3.5) etc, unless you shoot using the manual mode....while the LA-EA1 (in lenses with built-in motors) will behave exactly like it behaves when shooting video with the NEX7.

    Thus there are pluses and downsides with either option.
    A900 with a few lenses, flashes etc.

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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    Quote Originally Posted by turbines View Post
    Autofocus with LA-EA1? Is that correct?
    If it has a built-in motor as mentioned above, like the 70-300mm, for example, then yes, it autofocuses.

    I have no interest in the bigger LA-EA2. You may as well use a full sized dslr.
    Quentin Bargate
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    Re: Tamron 18-200mm VC Di III on NEX-7

    Quote Originally Posted by Michiel Schierbeek View Post
    Question; Does the Tamron support Sweep Panorama?

    Michiel
    Hey,

    I don't own this lens, but have been thinking of getting one.

    Reading other forums it seems that some percentage of people have found this lens not to work with the panorama on the nex7. For example this thread on dpr:

    Tamron 18-200mm E-mount Pano & Blurred image is to be solved: Sony NEX Talk Forum: Digital Photography Review

    I'm not sure if Sony would see this as a big enough deal to fix it in a firmware update, as I'm pretty sure there is no way for the end user to update the firmware on a lens except through the camera, which would have to be done by Sony.
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