This quarter, Columbus State got together with local camera retailer Midwest Photo Exchange and lens manufacturer Tamron for a special "class." This 2 credit class entailed spending the day at the Columbus Zoo shooting with a large selection of Tamron's lenses.
The lens is probably the most important piece of camera gear, these days. You can have the most expensive camera body available, but if you're using shitty glass, your images cannot come out sharp. Take it from me, I have learned this the hard way. Or better yet, go buy some cheap lenses on eBay and you will find out for yourself. Then start saving for the good stuff.
Since I shoot with a Nikon D700 body (which has a full frame sensor), I couldn't use any of Tamron's ultra-wide angle lenses. This was particularly disappointing to me, because I LOVE shooting really wide. I frequently use my Nikkor 18-55mm DX format lens (for smaller sensors) on my D700, which is fine as long as I don't zoom out wider than 24mm. Unfortunately, Tamron's Di format lenses (designed for smaller sensors) have heavy vignetting when mounted on a FF body, so that wasn't an option. So, I concentrated on Tamron's longer lenses.
All in all, I was not disappointed with Tamron's lenses. I shot wide-open, most of the time, which is where a lens is going to show it's weaknesses. I got rid of my Sigma lenses because they were soft wide-open. I did miss Vibration Control (Tamron's version of VR) on their 70-200mm. I do wish I could have compared the Tamron 70-200mm side-by-side with the Nikon, because that's my next big purchase.
View the rest of this set on Flickr.
Notes on images include what lens the image was made with.