So, I bought a new Tamron 18-400mm lens for my 80D ....

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Stan in NH Senior Member • Posts: 1,341
So, I bought a new Tamron 18-400mm lens for my 80D ....

I have only spent a day with a new Tamron 18-400mm lens so far, but am having very mixed feelings about it. I read all the positive and negative reviews and user comments, and certainly did not expect prime lens sharpness or speed. I expected it to be optically similar to my kit lenses, which are acceptable.

The lens was intended to replace my Sigma 100-400 lens, which is very good optically, but also very heavy. The Tamron is smaller, more versatile, and a pound lighter, so it struck me as a viable alternative. So far, I am a bit confused by the new Tamron. For reasons I have yet to figure out, my 80D seems to default to absurdly high ISO values with the Tamron. I have been routinely getting ISO 3200-6400 values while on P mode. Same with AV and TV. That degrades the IQ significantly, so I have set an ISO limit of 800 on the camera with this lens. At lower ISO levels I have gotten acceptable IQ, but nothing particularly impressive. AF seems to function well, with a few misses but mostly accurate. Color reproduction is fine, and CA seems to be well controlled.

Another thing that seems odd to me is the zoom ring.  It turns smoothly to about 100mm, then gets very heavy until about 300mm, then gets smooth again.  It functions fine, but I haven’t encountered this on any of my other zoom lenses.  One reviewer mentioned a “hiccup” in the zoom ring, so I think this may be in the design rather than a defect.

Today I'll head out to a local wildlife refuge and see what it will do there. I really want to like this lens, and I've seen some impressive images, using this lens, posted on the various forums. So, I won’t give up yet. I may even give Tamron's customer service a call and discuss this with them. It might be worth a checkout by them to see if this is a bad sample ... or just typical performance for this lens. I have a 30 day return window, so I will keep working with it.

 Stan in NH's gear list:Stan in NH's gear list
Nikon Coolpix P900 Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX90V Canon EOS 80D Sony a6400
Canon EOS 80D
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