Low-Mid range 'zoom' lens f/2.8?

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by MadTester, Dec 1, 2012.

  1. MadTester macrumors regular


    Mar 24, 2012
    Hi All,

    I'll probably get alot of stick for asking this question but I have done much research on the web but I still have doubts over which lens to get (apart from leaning towards Tamron solely for the price).......

    Sigma 24-70mm f/2.8 (nikon fit) or the " equivalent" Tamron 24-75mm... I like outdoor photography and have the sigma 120-400mm (monster) literally permanently attached to one of my nikons....

    I would however like something a little more portable and more responsive in low light.... anyone here use either or both these lenses and what are your experiences with them?

    Any advice would be great... thanks in advance
  2. Designer Dale macrumors 68040

    Designer Dale

    Mar 25, 2009
    Folding space
    I have both of the lenses you mentioned in Canon mount. The 120-400 is my bird lens and the Tamron 28-75 f/2.8 is my daily shooter. Nice and sharp lens that's good in low light but not as good as a 1.4. The Tamron is now available with their version of image stabilization (VC). Mine is not stabilized but I don't really miss it at the 28-75 focal range. I love the IS on the Sigma, but then I need it at 400.

  3. compuwar macrumors 601


    Oct 5, 2006
    Northern/Central VA
    Get the 50mm f/1.8, it's relatively inexpensive and faster- if you're on APS-C then the 35mm f/1.8 DX.

  4. Prodo123 macrumors 68020


    Nov 18, 2010
    I haven't used the Sigma 24-70mm but I do have Canon's 24-70 f/2.8. It's a superb lens for low light photography, along with the rest of the f/2.8 lineup in Canon's list.
    But I do know that Sigma, Tamron and other third-party lenses fall short in image quality when compared to Canon/Nikon's offerings.
    The Sigma gets heavy vignetting and distortion at the wide end. It has decent center sharpness but the Nikkor glass clearly outperforms it.
    Tamron performs marginally better in distortion and vignetting, but in the middle of the zoom range the sharpness drops according to Photozone's testing. Again, the Nikkor is simply better.

    Have you thought about the new Tamron 24-70mm VC? It has comparable image quality and even has vibration reduction for better lowlight performance.
  5. Policar macrumors 6502a

    Nov 21, 2004
    I've used the Tamron a bit. It's not bad. But it's not great. Corners are less than ideal.

    If you're on APS-C do yourself a favor and get a 17-55mm (or similar) lens instead. And then a fast 85mm for portraiture.

    But I agree: if you're shooting APS-C (DX) get the 35mm f1.8; if you're shooting FF get the 50mm f1.8, which is more expensive but also better than the Canon equivalent (which is basically all I use for stills, despite owning lots of good lenses). Even if it's in addition to a mid-range zoom.

    The 35mm f1.4 lenses are also just super nice on FF.
  6. MadTester thread starter macrumors regular


    Mar 24, 2012
    Hey all,

    Thanks for the replies... seems like it's down to 28-75 tamron or the 35mm nikon...

    My only concern is that I have 2 bodies.. D50 and a D3000 (of which the latter I am wanting to replace with a D600 when I can afford it!!)... I might see if i can hire both lenses for a day or 2 and then make a decision as to which I prefer as the lenses will be used on my D50(for now).

    Thanks again :D
  7. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Jan 5, 2006
    Redondo Beach, California
    For indoors try a 50mm f/1.4. With your budget you can afford it. Or if you need the wider angle of view get the 35mm f/1.8

    For this kind of photography you never really need a zoom lens because indoors you can always walk forward or back to frame the shot. And you will find the f/1.4 is MUCH better then f/2.8 After all it is TWO f-stops faster This allows a 4X shorter shutter speed that means you'd be at 1/60 with the f/1.4 lens and get sharp images but with the zoom you'd be at 1/15 and could not even get the shot.

    Yes do go for the f/1.4 if you can rther then the f/1.8 unless you are really short of cash or need the wider 35mm
  8. MadTester thread starter macrumors regular


    Mar 24, 2012
    Well... I have made the decision after much reading... and have tried both 1.4 and 1.8 50mm.... personally?... the 1.8 i feel is a nicer lens, quicker autofocus than the 1.4.... But still .. I'm harbouring a love for the 24-70mm 2.8... soooo I now have a prime and I'm putiing away a few more pennies for the 24-70mm

    Thanks to all for your pointer, advice and general helpful opinions .... :D

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