Photography News 81 WEB

First test

PRICE: £799 TRANSCONTINENTA.CO.UK Tamron28-200mmf/2.8-5.6Di III RXD Tamron’s latest superzoom scores a world first: it’s the first all-in-one zoom for mirrorless full-frame cameras with an f/2.8 maximum aperture

close to the front element, so watch for shadows. At 200mm, the minimum focus is 80cm. Here, you still get a useful magnification ratio of 1:3.8. Packing an extensive range of focal lengths into a single optic can compromise image quality, but this Tamron lens performed very well in terms of sharpness and detail rendition throughout the lens’ extensive range. My test shots also showed lovely contrast, giving crisp, lively looking shots. I took test shots at seven focal lengths at all apertures and I was impressed by the lens’ consistent and capable performance. I found its showing at maximum aperture at the 28mm setting very impressive. Open aperture performance was actually consistently good and very usable throughout the focal length range and, while stopping down one or two stops was beneficial, it wasn’t essential for critically good shots. The only negative is distortion, although it’s easily corrected in editing – or do it in-camera if you have that option. There’s barrel at 28mm and this becomes pincushion from 50mm onwards. WC SPECS ›  Prices £799 ›  In the box Lens with front and back caps, lens hood ›  Fittings Sony E ›  Format 35mm, APS-C › Construction 18 elements in 14 groups ›  Special lens elements One XLD, two hybrid aspherical, two glass moulded aspherical and two LD elements › Filter size 67mm › Magnification 1.31x (wide), 1.38x(tele) › Aperture range f/2.8-5.6-f/16-32 › Autofocus RXD stepping motor, compatible with eye AF, hybrid AF, direct manual focus › Lens coating Fluorine front protective coating, Tamron BBAR anti reflection coating › Minimum focus 19cm (wide) › Image stabiliser No › Diaphragm Seven blades › Weather-sealed Yes › Dimensions (dxl) 74x117mm › Weight 575g Contact transcontinenta.co.uk

These were taken on a Sony A7R IV, fixed to a Gitzo Systematic tripod. We took test shots at 28mm, 35mm, 50mm, 70mm, 100mm 135mm and 200mm, although only the results from three settings are shown here. ONTEST

Tamron’s expertise with superzooms stretches back to almost 30 years and its latest model, the 28-200mm f/2.8-5.6 Di III RXD, is the world’s first lens of this type for mirrorless full- frame cameras with a maximum f/2.8 aperture. This speed is achieved at the 28mm setting and its variable aperture means it slows down from that point, reaching f/5.6 at 200mm. Typical of superzoom, it’s a comparatively large lens put next to a fixed 28mm and about the same size as a fixed 200mmwhen it’s fully extended – the lens is about 6cm longer compared to its 28mm position. Handling rates highly and it’s nicely balanced when combined with the full- frame Sony A7R IV (kindly loaned by Hire a Camera), which we used for this review. I found the pair comfortable to carry one-handed while walking around, so I could be ready to shoot very quickly. A lock is also provided to keep the lens at 28mm, while the entire focal length range is covered in a one-quarter twist of the zoom barrel. With the help of Sony’s Steadyshot IBIS, I found handholding the lens at 200mm at 1/25sec possible. Autofocus is handled by Tamron’s RXDmotor so the action is fast, smooth and silent, plus you get the benefit of the camera’s focus features including face/eye detect. Minimum focus distance is usefully close, just 19cm at the 28mm end. With the lens and the camera body, this means at this focusing distance, the subject is

28mm

100mm

200mm

F/2.8

F/2.8

F/4.5

F/4.5

F/5.6

F/5.6

F/4

F/4

F/5.6

F/5.6

F/8

F/8

F/5.6

F/5.6

F/8

F/8

F/11

F/11

F/8

F/8

F/11

F/11

F/16

F/16

F/11

F/11

F/16

F/16

F/22

F/22

F/16

F/16

F/25

F/25

F/32

F/32

Verdict Sony owners wanting a high quality, all-in-one zoom should give the Tamron 28- 200mm f/2.8-5.6 Di III RXD a really close look. I enjoyed the freedom of taking out just one lens yet still have the range to cope with most of my everyday shooting needs, from scenic to close-ups. The lens is good to use and delivers an impressive level of performance, especially at its wider apertures. It’s nicely priced, too.

PROS Compact, f/2.8 at 28mm, optical quality

CONS Distortion

Our thanks to Hire a Camera for the loan of the Sony A7R IV body used in this review. Hireacamera.com

Issue 81 | Photography News 27

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