The Tamron 150-600 represents excellent value in terms of build quality and optical performance. I was well prepared to say that it would make an excellent lens for amateur wildlife photographers, but in fact, it even makes a great lens for a professional one too. After I had acquainted myself with the nuances of the autofocus system, I had no problem with reaching for the Tamron lens over my huge Canon 200-400mm F4 when the situation called for a lighter and more nimble solution.

Chromatic aberration didn't trouble me nearly as much in the field as lab results suggested it would, and when the issue was visible it was easy to remove with a single click in Adobe Lightroom. The sweet spot for this lens seems to be in the 300-450mm range, but lower focal lengths are still very good. At the longer end of the zoom range, sharpness drops off a little, and stopping down 2/3 of a stop or more becomes a consideration to maintain fine details if your subject has them.

Overall, I was pleasantly surprised to be able to create very useable images across the full zoom range. Perhaps the biggest revelation for me was just how much fun it was, and how useful it was, to have a lens with this kind of range in a relatively small and lightweight package. It got me shots that I would otherwise have missed, and immediately had me considering the purchase of a new lens for my own kit.

What we like

  • Excellent image quality across most of the range and acceptably good at the extreme
  • Focus lock switch allows locking in multiple positions
  • Usefully large zoom range
  • Overall build quality and feel are excellent for this price point
  • Good autofocus tracking in bright light once initial focus has been achieved

What we don't like

  • Excessive focus seeking when subject starts a long way out of focus
  • The tripod foot is quite small and might limit options if you are trying to balance the lens on a gimbal
  • The lens hood had a tendency to detach itself when stored in the reverse position in my bag
  • Vibration Compensation could be better