NEED SOME HELP WITH LENS SELECTION

Started Feb 22, 2013 | Discussions thread
123Mike
Senior MemberPosts: 4,116Gear list
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I didn't like the super zoom
In reply to Answell, Feb 22, 2013

Long story short, these are my observations I made myself, and from credible tests I've seen that includes evidence:

Tamron 18-250 = Sony 18-250

Tam/Sony 18-250 sharper than Tam 18-270 and Sigma 18-250

Sony 55-200 much sharper and is also faster than all the super zooms. The 55-200 at 200 reaches farther, magnifies more, than the Tamron 18-250 at 250. I found this very strange and I still can't believe it, but when I go back to my test shots and compare yet again, I can clearly see it. I literally have to go and check yet again, because I still can't believe it.

Sony 55-300 (new) much sharper as well.

Tamron 17-50 f2.8 much sharper, and much faster than 18-55 kit lens and all super zooms.

Both BC and BBC (beercan, big beercan) sharper than all super zooms.

Tamron 28-300 full frame lens, the 1st verison of the 3 generations it's had, about on par with the Tam 18-250, but costs much less, but it does need a little more stopping down.

Minolta 28-135 has a fatal problem where wide open it screws up the AF, causing consistent backfocusing (mine suffered from massive hazing and veiling wide open). The focus shifts quite a bit stopped down. AF happens wide open. Then snap a shot at say f8, and the shots is spoiled by a backfocus.

Minolta 28-105 xi is quite sharp and are easy and cheap to find. Often overlooked. Quite versatile. Stirdy, not too heavy, and takes very good photos even wide open. On a stringent budget, I highly recommend this lens, because of the price performance. Much sharper than the super zooms.

I sold my Tamron 18-250 because I could not stand the fuzziness. It just doesn't get tack sharp at the mid to long end. It's handy though. Missing the handiness I bought a very cheap Tamron 28-300 which isn't bad.

I have a bunch of other lenses. But I think this summer, given I find sharpness very important, I'm going to be using the Tamron 17-50 most of the time, and slap on the 55-200 for longer purposes. I find the 55-200 sharper than the BBC, and I'm disappointed that the BC needs stopping down to become sharp (so much for that f4 thing).

I've been looking at the samples of the new Sony 55-300, and it is *quite* the gem. It seems to be able to compete with the actual G lenses, and it appears better than the Min 100-300 APO and the Tam 70-300 which is very popular.

Personally, if you can get comfortable with swapping lenses, I'd aim for a Tamron 17-50 f2.8 + Sony 55-300. Then sell most if not all your other lenses. The Tam might obsolete your Min 50/1.7 as well, which needs stopping down anyway. The 17-50 is *quite* sharp at 50 wide open.

 123Mike's gear list:123Mike's gear list
Sony a6000 Sony E PZ 18-105mm F4 G OSS A3000 Sony E 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 OSS Tamron AF 28-300mm F/3.5-6.3 XR Di LD Aspherical (IF) Macro +5 more
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