Wednesday, 22 September 2010

Tamron 28-75mm f2.8 Dslr Lens Review + Sharpness test

This post looks closely at the sharpness of the Tamron 28-75mm f2.8 lens. I use this lens a lot and I love it, but as you will see in the photos below it is not always the sharpest lens.


I have used this lens a lot. so many times i have taken it out with me to night clubs to take shots of the partygoers and also use it a lot of any model shoot. I think it is a great lens, I got it second hand and it has a big dust spot in the middle of the front element but that has never come up in any of the photos.

Its 28mm is 4mm more restrictive than the other competitors being that they are usually 24-70mm but the 75mm being 5mm more telephoto really is not a major benefit in any way, Your not going to notice it, but what you might notice is its ability to really focus close to the subject, it has class leading macro capabilities meaning you can get up close and personal with your models or subjects.

Before you read anymore or check out the photos in depth, you have to remember the price difference. This lens only cost around £350 or $450 compare that with nikons version or canons version and you are looking at less than a third of the price of them. Granted the nikon or canon lenses are better, faster focus, smoother zoom, better build, sharper images, etc, but if your are starting out and you want a great fast lens (fast meaning an f2.8) then this is a top class lens to get on a budget, and should be on the order list right after the Nikon 50mm f1.4 (or get both at the same time)  And if you do progress to a full frame camera in the future this will fit it justs fine!

The sharpness at the centre of the image is excellent at 28 and 50 mm but is not to excellent standard at 75mm, It gets a bit fuzzy.  examples below.

20mm f5.6 (very good sharpness)

50mm f2.8 (more shallow DOF)

50mm f5.6 really good

75mm f2.8 (bigger file click me)

75mm f5.6 Mutch better now but still not that sharp compared to the 28mm

Ok so that should have given you some kind of idea of the sharpness levels and differences you get throughout the zoom range and the aperture range.  when the aperture is stopped down to 5.6 or 8 the lens is usually at its sharpest.  the greatest increase in sharpness is usually in the corners of the image, not so much the centre as that is considered to be sharp from the start

But being that you can get so close to your subject and you can have an f2.8 means your super shallow depth of field can look soo awesome when shooting close up to animals or general cinematography.  check out this video done with this lens on the canon 550D

Here is another video I did of my Girlfriends sister doing a race for a cancer charity, all shot on the canon 550D and the tamron lens

Here is an old video of some of the sharpness tests on this lens with some My other model Kim Grant.

And here is some fast action boxing with the nikon D90 showing its low light abilities and also its focus speed

Right if you are wanting this lens new check the links below. I use this lens loads and not had a problem with it, its good. Its not weather proof and its zoom is not very smooth but its soo much cheaper and has also been updated.  great lens and also works on full frame cameras.

 It is surprisingly harp at the wide angle but my version was not so sharp at 75mm f2.8, but when I say sharp I mean it wasnt razor, it was still perfectly good for almost any situation.  Still havent got to the point where I have thought to myself "maybe i should have bought the £1200 Nikon 24-70mm f2.8 lens.  Maybe in the future but just now this is still kicking ass and that even new it is only a couple of hundred compared to near or above a Grand!

Oh thats a lot for today.  Hope you enjoyed

Tamron SP AF 28-75mm f/2.8 XR Di LD Aspherical (IF) Lens

Jenna Seymour Photoshoot (with Dom Bower) from dom bower on Vimeo.


  1. hi dom, are u using tamron 28-75 to shoot Jenna?

  2. ok, do you think it;s gonna be nice if i use it with my DX camera, since it will change to 42- 113?

  3. Hi dom, i got a question and i wish you have de answer, i am a wedding photographer (in mexico) and i am actualy using the nikon D90, so i am thinking about get a 2.8 lens for my low ligth situations. so you recomend me this tamron 2.8 lens, or do you think is better the sigma 2.8... i have read a lot of reviews of both but some says one others says the contraire, i am a fan in your youtube videoblog and i wish you could help me plz

  4. both are very very good, i got the tamron as it was dirt cheap.

  5. Hi Dom, will this lens fit on a Canon T2i?

  6. Hi Dom, here's Alvaro from Chile. I want to ask you if I do a lot of shots in parties without using a special flash, social pictures you can say, in low lights conditions and also the same shots but outdoors in plane daylight, so... wich is a better lens for this, a 18-200mm Sigma or the 28-75mm Tamron?

    I got a Sony Alpha a-65, works with the Tamron?

    Tnaks a lot.

  7. Hi Dom, which one do you think is better, tamron 17 - 50 2.8 vs this 28 - 75

    1. I want to buy a combo of Canon 60D and one of these lens, but I don't know which one will be a good purchase. 17 - 50 seems to have good wide angle to take landscape, but 28-75 will have greater tele photo...

  8. Thanks for review, it was excellent and very informative.
    nice pict
    thank you :)

  9. Hello, I am debating which lens to buy (save for and buy) I use a 35mm 1.8 and a 50mm 1.8. I am looking for a zoom lens as a friend has asked me to shoot their wedding. I was looking at the Tamron 24-70mm but then saw the 28-75mm. Which in your opinion is the better investment?

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