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03-06-2009, 07:59 PM   #1
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Tamron SP 90mm f/2.8 1:1 Macro non-Di on Flowers

It is either greed, stupidity and LBA blindness that I first bought a Tamron SP 90mm f/2.8 1:1 Macro non-Di and then I saw a good copy of Sigma 105mm f/2.8 1:1 Ex DG that I could not resist. Now I am in misery of deciding which one to go and which one to keep. It would be easier if one is significantly better than the other but I can't easily tell which one is better.

I thought about getting rid of this Tamron macro which is non-Di. But I honestly can't tell what Di is all about in the Tamron macro. As for the Sigma I have the non-DG first before DG versions, and again I can't really tell the difference between the two on non-DG and DG except the lens holster and other cosmetic difference.

As always, I did casual shooting with jpg on K20D this morning with this Tamron lens. With exception on #4, there is no editing done. All are straight from K20D and the Tamron macro


#1 f/4.5



#2 f/2.8



#3 f/5.6



#4



#5



#6
Off focus on this one unfortunately


#7
Off focus but I love the background color


Flickr Test Sets on Flowers & Portraits

If you are in my shoe in deciding to pick one to go, how would you approach the decision. Any suggestion is appreciated.

Hin


Last edited by hinman; 03-06-2009 at 09:38 PM.
03-06-2009, 08:05 PM   #2
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I don't think anyone could possibly be in your shoes Hin, you are in a league of your own.


Best suggestion I can come up with is to take some non macro shots and compare.
03-06-2009, 08:20 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by Damn Brit Quote
I don't think anyone could possibly be in your shoes Hin, you are in a league of your own.

Best suggestion I can come up with is to take some non macro shots and compare.
Gary,

Thank you for the suggestion. I did try out the Tamron on portraits and that lens is outstanding on portraits. The build quality goes to the Sigma as Tamron is all plastic whereas the Sigma has nice texture and the solid feel on the barrel. In terms of macro, especially for bugs, the Sigma will do better with longer focusing distance. In terms of CA, I can't find any with the Sigma. It is really a toss between the two in terms of sharpness and the MF ring. Ease of use will go to the Tamron for casual shooting with a great focus limiter. I find AF in close up to be slow in BOTH Sigma and Tamron. Other people suggests that Tamron is faster in AF and I find both are slow, perhaps the very nature of macro lens with long focus throw.
03-06-2009, 08:49 PM   #4
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I fell in love with this lens (90mm Tamron 2.8) very soon after I got it--I can not imagine letting it go. However, I have never shot with the Sigma and now that I see the horrible dilemma before you, I'll be sure to not shoot with the Sigma---ever. Gary said it well, you are "in a league all your own."


Last edited by Jewelltrail; 03-08-2009 at 10:09 PM. Reason: spell correct
03-08-2009, 09:10 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by Jewelltrail Quote
I fell in love with this lens (90mm Tamron 2.8) very soon after I got it--I can not imagine letting it go. However, I have never shot with the Sigma and now that I see the horrible dilemma before you, I'll be sure to not shoot with the Sigma---ever. Gary said it well, you are "in a league all you own."
Thank you for the inputs. Earlier today, I tried the Sigma 105mm f/2.8 1:1 Ex DG Macro on the same flowers but in different lighting in brighter afternoon instead of morning softer lighting with the Tamron. The Sigma AF hunts more than the Tamron in close up and I have to turn to MF for few of the shots. Color seems to pop more in the Tamron and I have added some minro tuning in the set. A few test shots on flowers with the Sigma lens



















Last edited by hinman; 03-10-2009 at 11:44 AM.
03-08-2009, 09:41 PM   #6
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I will buy another camera body so I can keep both lenses. ;-)
03-08-2009, 09:52 PM   #7
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You can send one of them to me so you will be freed of your misery... =) And since I'm so kind I'll give you the choice of which one to send
03-08-2009, 10:08 PM   #8
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QuoteQuote:
Hinman: Thank you for the inputs. Earlier today, I tried the Sigma 105mm f/2.8 1:1 Ex DG Macro on the same flowers but in different lighting in brighter afternoon instead of morning softer lighting with the Tamron. The Sigma AF hunts more than the Tamron in close up and I have to turn to MF for few of the shots. Color seems to pop more in the Tamron. A few test shots on flowers with the Sigma lens
Thank you, very much for the comparison shooting and nice job presenting similar shots, even with the varying conditions. I really appreciate this kind of comparative shooting. It is hard to quantify anything, unless you have something with which to compare it. Thanks Hin!!!

03-08-2009, 11:29 PM   #9
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I have the Di version of the Tam 90/2.8 macro and am quite fond of it. Very versatile lens.

I was taking my first stabs at flower macros the other night and as I was finishing up the wife came in with our son. I swapped the Daffodil out for him and kept right on shooting...

First one of the 1:1 attempts of the Daffodil:
[imgwideleft]http://www.perzactly.com/posts/2009/03/09/JDG06561.jpg[/imgwideleft]

And a few minutes later, my son. (Note: not at 1:1 )
[imgwideleft]http://www.perzactly.com/posts/2009/03/09/JDG06592.jpg[/imgwideleft]

Oh, on Di vs Di II vs non-Di - I am led to believe this has to do with the coatings and film/digital compatibility. non-Di Tamron lenses are "conventional" - built for film cameras. Di have coatings for digital but are still full-frame compatible. Di II are made for APS-C digital with digital coatings. I can use the 90/2.8 Di on my PZ-1 w/o vignetting, but my 17-50/2.8 Di II vignettes throughout the zoom range.

Last edited by Venturi; 03-08-2009 at 11:33 PM. Reason: more babbling
03-09-2009, 11:26 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Venturi Quote
I have the Di version of the Tam 90/2.8 macro and am quite fond of it. Very versatile lens.

I was taking my first stabs at flower macros the other night and as I was finishing up the wife came in with our son. I swapped the Daffodil out for him and kept right on shooting...

First one of the 1:1 attempts of the Daffodil:
http://www.perzactly.com/posts/2009/03/09/JDG06561.jpg

And a few minutes later, my son. (Note: not at 1:1 )
http://www.perzactly.com/posts/2009/03/09/JDG06592.jpg

Oh, on Di vs Di II vs non-Di - I am led to believe this has to do with the coatings and film/digital compatibility. non-Di Tamron lenses are "conventional" - built for film cameras. Di have coatings for digital but are still full-frame compatible. Di II are made for APS-C digital with digital coatings. I can use the 90/2.8 Di on my PZ-1 w/o vignetting, but my 17-50/2.8 Di II vignettes throughout the zoom range.
Thank you for showing the samples from Tamron Di. I love your baby portrait, that is a lovely setup. Are you using any special lighting on the portrait? What kind of flash set up you use. I am newbie to flash and I always want to learn to put my 540 into good use.

I have used my Tamron non-Di on portraits. My Tamron 90mm is the next best prime for portraits after my Pentax FA 77mm f/1.8. Though it is a little bit longer, I find it capable in flowers as much as in portraits when space is big enough for the 90mm. I tested my Tamron on flowers and then I meet up my sweetie for casual portrait shooting in 2 outings.


In fall time
wish I brought in
flash to lighten up the shadow






Last Friday




03-09-2009, 12:25 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by hinman Quote
Thank you for showing the samples from Tamron Di. I love your baby portrait, that is a lovely setup. Are you using any special lighting on the portrait? What kind of flash set up you use. I am newbie to flash and I always want to learn to put my 540 into good use.

I have used my Tamron non-Di on portraits. My Tamron 90mm is the next best prime for portraits after my Pentax FA 77mm f/1.8. Though it is a little bit longer, I find it capable in flowers as much as in portraits when space is big enough for the 90mm. I tested my Tamron on flowers and then I meet up my sweetie for casual portrait shooting in 2 outings.
Thanks for the compliment - Nate does make it easy though. He's (thankfully) quite fond of the camera, and it of him.
Nice shots of your wife too. I rather like the "attitude" the hard light brings to the first one.

Both shots used the exact same lighting. I merely moved the daffodil away, plopped him down in its place and took the K20D off the tripod.

I used an AlienBees AB800 (they're cheaper than AF540FGZs!) with a medium (24x36) softbox infront of and above and camera right at 1/8th power. At camera left, even with the subjects and slightly below I had my AF540FGZ with a Lumiquest Softbox III set to either 1/64th of 1/32nd. Both were fired with CyberSync RF triggers.
The background is a 5x8' seamless backdrop a neighbor sewed a hem and rod pocket into. I picked up black, gray and white duck cloth at a fabric store a while back. It's rugged, heavy enough to remain opaque and fairly inexpensive. It does tend to hold wrinkles so I have to use care in hanging it between sessions because ironing it is a royal pain.
03-09-2009, 07:40 PM   #12
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Does the Sigma have the usual sigma yellow cast?
03-09-2009, 10:09 PM   #13
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I like shooting flowers with the Tamron 90mm--- No PPing--all shot JPG with K20:

Last edited by Jewelltrail; 09-25-2009 at 09:04 AM.
03-09-2009, 11:21 PM   #14
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You could always flip a coin..
03-10-2009, 04:14 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by Venturi Quote
Thanks for the compliment - Nate does make it easy though. He's (thankfully) quite fond of the camera, and it of him.
Nice shots of your wife too. I rather like the "attitude" the hard light brings to the first one.

Both shots used the exact same lighting. I merely moved the daffodil away, plopped him down in its place and took the K20D off the tripod.

I used an AlienBees AB800 (they're cheaper than AF540FGZs!) with a medium (24x36) softbox infront of and above and camera right at 1/8th power. At camera left, even with the subjects and slightly below I had my AF540FGZ with a Lumiquest Softbox III set to either 1/64th of 1/32nd. Both were fired with CyberSync RF triggers.
The background is a 5x8' seamless backdrop a neighbor sewed a hem and rod pocket into. I picked up black, gray and white duck cloth at a fabric store a while back. It's rugged, heavy enough to remain opaque and fairly inexpensive. It does tend to hold wrinkles so I have to use care in hanging it between sessions because ironing it is a royal pain.
Thanks for all the detail strobist information.

QuoteOriginally posted by jake123 Quote
Does the Sigma have the usual sigma yellow cast?
I am not aware of yellow cast on my Sigma. Maybe my ignorance! I do notice a tendency of darker images from the Sigma.

Both lens does decent on flowers for me. My Tamron is an non-di version but I honestly can't tell if the later and more costly Di version can do any better for my casual shooting as an hobbyist. In the two shootings, I do find the AF in Tamron a bit better with less hunting. The manual focus are similar but I recall a longer extension from the Tamron. For normal shootings, both focus limiter does the job well. PF/CA seems better controlled in the Sigma. Both AF are too-loud to me for close up.

I am hoping that I don't rush into a decision until I figure out which one I like better in terms of color, IQ and ease of handling in making a shot on close up.
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