Tamron’s AF18-250mm F/3.5-6.3 Di-II LD Aspherical (IF) Macro
The versatility of the Tamron 18-250mm lens is evident in both close focusing and when gathering in distant subjects. The crisp edges and edge contrast are both shown in this shot of an old pickup truck in Taos, New Mexico. Exposure with a Canon 30D at ISO 200 was f/13 at 1/320 sec at the 18mm focal length. Without moving from the shooting distance this classic Chevy emblem was captured along with the wonderful patina of this old desert truck. Exposure was unchanged but lens was racked out to frame the logo.
All Photos © 2006, Grace Schaub, All Rights Reserved
And while particulars are proprietary, Tamron tells us that the lens uses
an optical system that is designed to "confine the changing angles of
incidence of light rays reaching the imager within a certain scope over the
entire image field by considering the effects of variance due to zooming."
That mouthful means that the lens is designed for digital from the ground up
and not just as an adapted 35mm design.
Another plus of this lens, and why it becomes increasingly obvious why we dub it an "all-in-one" is its close-focusing ability, which is 17.7" throughout the entire focal length range. When racked out to the maximum focal length this means no more need to position yourself to avoid casting a shadow when doing close-ups, although depth of field at the max range is necessarily shallow.
The fit and finish are quite good, with a bit of gold banding to give it an upscale look and metal mount in all fittings. There's also a zoom lock mechanism to avoid the dreaded "zoom creep" when carrying the lens. Rubber patterns and grip on the zoom and focus ring finish off the nice look and feel of the lens.
Overall the new Tamron 18-250mm is a phenomenal piece of design and engineering. It delivers a very wide focal length range in a very compact package. While the lens more than doubles in size extension when zoomed out to the max, it fits very handily in a fanny or sling pack when on the move. And image quality in various lighting and shooting conditions was excellent. Although that narrow maximum aperture at the longer focal lengths might give you pause, there's no question that the price is right for such a versatile lens. I wouldn't hesitate to take it along on a casual trip or vacation.
For more information, contact Tamron Lenses USA, Inc., 10 Austin Blvd., Commack, NY 11725; (800) 827-8880; www.tamron.com.
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