Two of the most popular autofocus lenses for Pentax are the SMC Pentax DFA 100mm WR and the Tamron 90mm SP. Now that Sigma has discontinued the Pentax version of the Macro 105mm lens, and has yet to start producing its replacement, the Pentax and the Tamron are the only two autofocus macro lenses currently available in this focal length range. Last year, we reviewed the Pentax 100mm on its own- but now it's time to see how it matches up with the competition!
Both the Pentax 100mm and the Tamron 90mm have focal lengths in the popular 100mm range, both are true macro lenses with 1:1 magnification, and both are well regarded by users, but how do they compare in design, handling and, perhaps most importantly, image quality?
This comparative review aims at shedding light on these questions. Each lens will first be presented at length, describing its physical characteristics, operation, and performances. A comparative section will then analyse each lens’ merits and flaws when compared to the other. We will look at physical differences, operation, and optical performance.
All Tamron product shots in this review were taken with the Pentax lens, and vice-versa.
Review originally published on February 22nd, 2012