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Wide to Normal Zoom Lens... for DX


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12 replies to this topic

#1 Marco Lanciani

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Posted 04 July 2012 - 00:41

Looking for a lens for all-around and event photography.
My camera is a D7000.
Nikon is not in my budget now... my idea is:

- Tamron 17-50 2.8 (no VR)

Should I consider the VR version in relation to optical performance?
Also, looking for the best optical performance: what about a Sigma 18-50 2.8 VR?

- Does it worth the extra money?

Thanks in Advance.
Marco

#2 STSinNYC

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 06:25

A quick check shows the Tamron 17-50 retailing here (US) for around €400 (plus tax). You can get an AFS Nikkor 18-70 in very good condition for €160. I use that lens often on my DX cameras (sometimes for work) and get very good results.

#3 crowecg

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 07:29

Given the D7000's ability with High ISO, do you really need f2.8?? Then you can start with some of Nikons cheaper kit lenses - despite it's price and plastic build, the 18-55 is pretty good.

#4 Marco Lanciani

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 11:58

@ STSinNYC:

in Europe (Amazon IT) the Tamron 17-50 2.8 (no VR) is around €280 New. Unfortunately they don't have the AFS Nikkor 18-70. Amazon DE has it but it sells for €400!
As you suggested I already considered the option of the nikkor but it's not cheaper.



@ crowecg:

Two good main reasons for having (even a third part) f2.8 at all focal lenghts:
- ability to play with DOF
- AF performance (even though most of the time I'll be shooting at f4 and above)
Marco

#5 Larry

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 16:07

Hi Marco,

I normally use the Nikkor 17-55mm f/2.8 for my DX bodies but have had several chance to borrow and use the Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 (VR and non-VR version). From my limited experience, the non-VR version of the Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 delivers much more than what one would normally expect from a lens priced at this level. I have no qualms in using it wide-open though I have mostly used it at f/3.2. The VR version on the other hand performed much more poorly optically speaking such that I would choose the non-VR version on performance alone. That the non-VR version cost less is yet another reason to choose it.

Compared against what is likely the best made for DX zoom lens that Nikkor has made, the Nikkor 16-85mm f/3.5-5.6, the Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 holds itself very well and at the same aperture setting as the Nikkor zoom, it will be very hard to distinguish what lens was used except for the color rendering. If you need an f/2.8 zoom lens without paying premium price, I would not hesitate to recommend the Tamron 17-50mm f2.8.

Re the Sigma 18-50mm f/2.8 OS (with VR), this is another good performing lens but is priced higher than the Tamron 17-50mm f2.8. I have only used this lens once and it did not make any special impression on me that its optical performance is better than what the Tamron can deliver. Its primary advantage is its optical stabilization and being somewhat faster and quieter in autofocusing than the Tamron. If the price difference between the Tamron and this Sigma is not a factor, the Sigma 18-50mm f/2.8 OS is also a good choice.

Larry

Edited by Larry, 09 July 2012 - 16:22 .


#6 STSinNYC

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 20:01

Marco, have you looked on eBay? You might find an 18-70 in Europe at your buedgt. Used, but well cared for.

#7 Marco Lanciani

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 22:07

Marco, have you looked on eBay? You might find an 18-70 in Europe at your buedgt. Used, but well cared for.

Actually I don't have an eBay account and maybe I don't like it very much.
By the way, I know the Nikkor 18-70 is a good performer but it's 3.5-4.5 too. Maybe not the ideal lens for event and low light photography.
I mean, even though I might shoot at 4.5, on a 2.8 lens, the AF still reads at 2.8, anyway... on a 4.5 lens I might miss the focus.
Marco

#8 Marco Lanciani

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 22:15

Hi Marco,

I normally use the Nikkor 17-55mm f/2.8 for my DX bodies but have had several chance to borrow and use the Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 (VR and non-VR version). From my limited experience, the non-VR version of the Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 delivers much more than what one would normally expect from a lens priced at this level. I have no qualms in using it wide-open though I have mostly used it at f/3.2. The VR version on the other hand performed much more poorly optically speaking such that I would choose the non-VR version on performance alone. That the non-VR version cost less is yet another reason to choose it.

Compared against what is likely the best made for DX zoom lens that Nikkor has made, the Nikkor 16-85mm f/3.5-5.6, the Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 holds itself very well and at the same aperture setting as the Nikkor zoom, it will be very hard to distinguish what lens was used except for the color rendering. If you need an f/2.8 zoom lens without paying premium price, I would not hesitate to recommend the Tamron 17-50mm f2.8.

Re the Sigma 18-50mm f/2.8 OS (with VR), this is another good performing lens but is priced higher than the Tamron 17-50mm f2.8. I have only used this lens once and it did not make any special impression on me that its optical performance is better than what the Tamron can deliver. Its primary advantage is its optical stabilization and being somewhat faster and quieter in autofocusing than the Tamron. If the price difference between the Tamron and this Sigma is not a factor, the Sigma 18-50mm f/2.8 OS is also a good choice.

Larry


Hi Larry,

I wish I had a 17-55mm f/2.8 (which is now due for replacement, I guess). By the way thanks for the info on the Sigma. If I find a special offer on Amazon I might even consider it. At the moment I'm still oriented toward the Tamron (no VR).
Marco

#9 esym

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Posted 13 July 2012 - 23:32

Actually I don't have an eBay account and maybe I don't like it very much.
By the way, I know the Nikkor 18-70 is a good performer but it's 3.5-4.5 too. Maybe not the ideal lens for event and low light photography.
I mean, even though I might shoot at 4.5, on a 2.8 lens, the AF still reads at 2.8, anyway... on a 4.5 lens I might miss the focus.


The 17-55mm is a much better choice just for the focusing issue. It is a very nice lens and will serve you well -- and it should hold it's resale value pretty well if you decide to sell it later on.

#10 Marco Lanciani

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Posted 11 August 2012 - 16:54

I took my decision: I went for the Tamron 17-50 2.8 (no VR)... and here you can see some of my first images with the lens:

Even though I took it mainly for event and street photography it does also a good job on landscape.
Marco

#11 Mike G

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Posted 11 August 2012 - 18:51

Marco, I don't think the 18-70 will let you down look around and I'm sure you will find one a lot cheaper. I have just checked Grays of Westminster who have for £179 and they are superb at mail order! So if some one is trying to get €400 is ripping you off,

Edited by Mike G, 11 August 2012 - 18:54 .

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#12 Marco Lanciani

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Posted 12 August 2012 - 00:20

Actually I payed the Tamron around €280, shipping included on Amazon IT... I chose it only because it is a fixed f2.8 lens, which is perfect for my main purposes, events and street photography, and it's still a good performer.

By the way, thanks for the info Mike: the 18-70 is known to be a very good performer and I might still be tempted at that price! :)
Marco

#13 Mike G

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Posted 12 August 2012 - 13:33

Marco it wasn't until after I had pressed the post button that I noticed you had gone for the Tamron, Doh :prankster:

Edited by Mike G, 12 August 2012 - 13:33 .

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