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09-11-2007, 09:21 PM   #1
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DA* 16-50 vs Tamron 28-75

I did some quick tests the other night on a few of my lenses. Main result that I was interested in was if the DA* is actually better than the very good Tamron 28-75.

End result after testing at various focal lengths (ones that overlapped) and fstops was-

DA* is sharper at all focal lengths.

At f2.8, it was very noticable.
At f8, the Tamron almost caught up, but the DA* still was superior.

They both focused the same, no problems with either on front or back focus that I noticed.

As a bit of a further test, I put my friends Canon 20D on the same tripod, with the same Tamron 28-75 lens in Canon mount, and compared the two cameras against each other. Aside from colour due to the way each brand meters and white balances and so on, you couldn't pick any differences at all in sharpness, its all lens, not body. About all I could say was his Tamron backfocused very slightly, a problem he already knew about, and that was most likely caused by the fact thats its been beaten to hell by travelling. Both cameras on identical settings, at ISO 100.

I didn't test any of the infinity focus problems reported, this was just an inside sharpness test, but in a quick test previously I haven't noticed any difference between the DA* focusing at infinity and other lenses, they all produce the same result.

The DA* should out perform the Tamron as it costs quite a bit more, and it does. The Tamron is a good lens for its price, as other reviews have already shown.

Linked below are 4 full size jpegs of the most noticable tests, at 50mm, the supposedly worst focal length for the DA* 16-50, and right in the middle for the Tamron, where it should perform pretty well. One set at f2.8, other at f8.
All the photos are from raw, converted in Photoshop CS2 with nothing applied, open raw, save as jpeg. Did the same with the Canon tests.

f.28
http://users.on.net/~ryansteele/Forums/DAStar%2050mm%20f28.jpg
http://users.on.net/~ryansteele/Forums/Tamron%2050mm%20f28.jpg

f8
http://users.on.net/~ryansteele/Forums/DAStar%2050mm%20f8.jpg
http://users.on.net/~ryansteele/Forums/Tamron%2050mm%20f8.jpg

Be interesting to see what conclusions other people come to, its too easy to overlook things otherwise.

09-12-2007, 12:01 AM   #2
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Thanks for the test

But by my own experience (and some of my friends' experience) with the new DA*16-50, it's worse focal length is at the wide end instead of the tele end. My friends and I all have some BF problem with our DA*16-50 lenses
09-12-2007, 12:09 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by frank Quote
Thanks for the test

But by my own experience (and some of my friends' experience) with the new DA*16-50, it's worse focal length is at the wide end instead of the tele end. My friends and I all have some BF problem with our DA*16-50 lenses
Yeah, the wider a lens is, the harder it is to keep under control. But the DA* still beat the Tamron all the way out to 28mm, roughly, since I had to guess where 28mm was on the DA*.

I could give it a test against Sigma 12-24, but its 3.5-5.6 if I recall, maybe see how they compete at those fstops.

We were mainly testing a friends Tamron vs mine, to see if there was a problem with his, while it was setup I just compared it against the DA* as well.
09-12-2007, 05:36 AM   #4
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Thanks for the tests. It is great to see the DA* hold its own against the Tamron. I actually prefer the color/tone of the DA* in your images. However, the sharpness seems about the same...which is good for DA* considering how sharp the Tamron is. Please keep the comparisons coming. Many thanks for sharing.

12-02-2007, 08:26 PM   #5
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I have both lenses and while I have not done any test to compare the two, I can't see any difference between them...The only reason I bought the 16-50 was
because I needed something on the short end...
12-02-2007, 08:38 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by jgredline Quote
I have both lenses and while I have not done any test to compare the two, I can't see any difference between them...The only reason I bought the 16-50 was
because I needed something on the short end...
Big reason I got it, the Tamron on a crop camera just wasn't wide enough. Add the weather sealing (I live in tropics and hike in rainforest a lot) and the SDM, it was a no-brainer.

Both are very good lenses. Tamron is unbelievable bang-for-buck.
12-02-2007, 09:04 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Maxington Quote
Big reason I got it, the Tamron on a crop camera just wasn't wide enough. Add the weather sealing (I live in tropics and hike in rainforest a lot) and the SDM, it was a no-brainer.

Both are very good lenses. Tamron is unbelievable bang-for-buck.
Exactly right...
Really they are two completely different lenses and to compare the two is really not fair and when you consider the Tamron cost 1/2 what the pentax does, well it is two different worlds
12-03-2007, 05:58 AM   #8
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My current kit is primarily the Sigma 10-20mm, the Tamron, and the Pentax 50-135mm, but I'm considering swapping out the Tamron with the DA* 16-50mm. Less overlap and I'll have f/2.8 from 16mm to 135mm. Only issuse is funding

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