DA 12-24mm vs Sigma and Tamron 10-24mm Comparison

Image Quality: Flare

Lens flare is a fact of life and it can often show up on your pictures unannounced. I’ve had many situations where I’ll take a picture and then review the shot later, only to discover either a haze, yellow streaks, or those funny looking pentagon shaped spots on my prized pictures. All the lenses in this review have special coatings and lens elements that are designed to reduce lens flare. The Pentax DA 12-24mm f/4, the Sigma DG 12-24 f/4.5-5.6, and the Tamron SP AF 10-24mm f/3.5-4.5 DI II lenses, in this review, should be especially susceptible to flare because they are all zooms and all have multiple elements. The more elements a lens has the greater the chance of unwanted flare. Flare is generally caused by bright light just outside the image area. The best defense for lens flare is to use the lens hoods shipped with the lens. Ultra-wide zoom lenses have very small lens hoods because of the extreme range of their zoom.

For this flare test we placed the sun just outside the view image and worked to create flare in the image. We were able to create flare in all the lenses but the flare could not be created consistently every time. The lens flare was more pronounced as the lenses were stopped down.

Flare Test

For the inside flare test we again tried to create flare in all the lenses. This time the Sigma DG 12-24 f/4.5-5.6 exhibited significant flare while the Pentax DA 12-24mm f/4 and Tamron SP AF 10-24mm f/3.5-4.5 DI II were almost flare free.

Flare Test

Conclusion

For this test, there was no clear winner. All three lenses are moderately susceptible to flare. In situations where you have a bright light source coming from outside the image area you will likely encounter some lens flare. The best defense against flare is to anticipate the possibility. If shielding your eyes from the light source improves its appearance then it would be wise to shield the lens as well. All three lenses have very short hoods, so you might need to locate some type of aftermarket hood like the Flex Lens Shade.


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