Go Back   Steve's Digicams Forums > Digital SLR and Interchangeable Lens Cameras > Sony Alpha dSLR / Konica Minolta dSLR, Sony SLT

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old Jan 9, 2012, 10:44 AM   #21
Senior Member
 
shoturtle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Frankfurt AM
Posts: 11,348
Default

It gets really soft after 250mm, if you are shooting macro. I would avoid zoom going past 250mm. But it is one of the best bottom of the barrel lenses. It should be workable on a student budget.
__________________
Super Frequent Flyer, no joke. Ex Patriot and loving it.
Canon Eos 60D, T1i/500D, Eos1, Eos 630, Olympus EPL-1, and a part time Pentax K-X shooter.
shoturtle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jan 9, 2012, 4:52 PM   #22
Senior Member
 
Marawder's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Geneva, SWITZERLAND
Posts: 677
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by JimC View Post
It's one of the better budget 70-300mm zoom lenses
Neh, I won't be going with that lens. I don't like shooting landscapes at a 70mm focal length.

I truly am tempted by the Tamron 18-270mm, but it costs almost 3x as much as the 18-200mm. And if I buy it, I won't be eating for 2 weeks!

Since I prefer staying alive, I'm going with the 18-200mm. I always post-process my images anyway, and I'll also be shooting in RAW. The latest version of PS can correct CA, vignetting, distortion etc. Nothing is impossible with digital!
__________________
Sony α
dSLR-A580
Minolta AF 35-70mm f/4
Sony DT 50mm f/1.8 SAM

Tamron SP AF 17-50mm f/2.8 XR Di-II LD
Tamron SP AF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 Di USD XLD
Marawder is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jan 9, 2012, 5:42 PM   #23
Administrator
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Savannah, GA (USA)
Posts: 22,378
Default

My advise on a tight budget:

Go with this two lens kit at Jessops that includes the A35 with the 18-55mm and 55-200mm kit lenses for 529.95 with free delivery:

http://www.jessops.com/online.store/...1552/show.html

That's a good deal, since the 55-200mm lens alone is probably worth the price difference between the body only prices you'll find.

That way, you'll get good AF speed and image quality (much better than you'd have with the Tamron 18-200mm you're looking at, or any of the other all-in-one lenses for that matter).

Then, later, if you decide to buy a better "all-in-one" lens (keeping in mind that you'll get lower image quality than you already have with a two lens kit like that, even with the better all-in-one lenses), just put the original lenses on Ebay, where you'd probably get more for a two lens kit like that compared to a single (and less desirable if they're a knowledgeable buyer) Tamron 18-200mm.

Post Processing can help out with some issues like distortion and CA (keeping in mind that you will lose some of the image from distortion correction and lose some detail from CA correction).

But, if a lens can't resolve enough detail to begin with, you can't process in more detail than the lens captured to begin with. You can't improve AF speed and accuracy in post processing either.

What are you finding the Camera Body for, and how much are you going to pay for the Tamron 18-200mm?

As a general "rule of thumb", the camera manufacturers' kits including a lens or lenses are usually a pretty good deal, as you tend to get a price break on the lenses compared to buying the camera and lenses separately.

When third party lenses enter the mix, that's usually not the case, unless a vendor is just trying to get rid of lenses in stock that nobody is buying separately. ;-)

From what I'm seeing of UK prices, that Jessops deal on a two lens kit is a good bet, as you're basically getting two lenses for the price that only one would sell for compared to the body only price I'm seeing at some of the other vendors I've found selling in the UK.

But, I don't know much about UK Vendors to tell if some of the other ones around may be able to beat it.

In any event, there is no way I'd buy that Tamron if I were you. Frankly, I wouldn't use one if someone gave it to me. But, you'll have to decide on the image quality you can tolerate for the viewing and print sizes you'll use more often, as that kind of thing is very subjective.
JimC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jan 9, 2012, 6:55 PM   #24
Senior Member
 
shoturtle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Frankfurt AM
Posts: 11,348
Default

You might want to consider a lower price body, and go with higher grade lens. If you can save 150 francs on the body and put it toward a better lens. You will get much better results. Glass is way more important for what you shoot then the body. A good wide angle lens will complement your photography very well from the type of photography you have posted.
__________________
Super Frequent Flyer, no joke. Ex Patriot and loving it.
Canon Eos 60D, T1i/500D, Eos1, Eos 630, Olympus EPL-1, and a part time Pentax K-X shooter.
shoturtle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jan 9, 2012, 6:57 PM   #25
Senior Member
 
Marawder's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Geneva, SWITZERLAND
Posts: 677
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by JimC View Post
My advise on a tight budget:
Go with this two lens kit at Jessops that includes the A35 with the 18-55mm and 55-200mm kit lenses for 529.95 with free delivery:

http://www.jessops.com/online.store/...1552/show.html

That's a good deal, since the 55-200mm lens alone is probably worth the price difference between the body only prices you'll find.
Jimmy, Jessops doesn't deliver outside the UK. And even if it would, I'd never order something from the UK, doesn't make any sense, why pay the extra transport cost, there are plenty of online stores in Switzerland and neighbouring France.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JimC View Post
What are you finding the Camera Body for, and how much are you going to pay for the Tamron 18-200mm?
I found the camera body at a price of CHF 485, wich is about 510 US dollars, and the Tamron at around 170 US dollars (CHF 160).
SLT body + Tamron 18-200mm = 680 dollars

With a 2 kit lens deal, the cost would go up to nearly 800 dollars, but as you said, I'll get better image quality.
Unfortunately, 2 lens are more cumbersome than 1, hence I'll need a bigger and more expensive camera bag! Also, changing lenses means more opportunity for dust and other airborn particles to reach the sensor and mirror...

I would have definitely gone with the 2 kit lens, if it weren't for the issue of dust and extra weight. I hate having to worry about camera maintenance while I'm traveling, and I also hate carrying heavy bags.

Versatility is just very important to me...are you sure the kit lenses are better even than the newer 18-270mm?

Quote:
Originally Posted by shoturtle View Post
You might want to consider a lower price body...
But I LOVE the A35 so much! I don't think I'd be happy with another body...
__________________
Sony α
dSLR-A580
Minolta AF 35-70mm f/4
Sony DT 50mm f/1.8 SAM

Tamron SP AF 17-50mm f/2.8 XR Di-II LD
Tamron SP AF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 Di USD XLD

Last edited by Marawder; Jan 9, 2012 at 7:02 PM.
Marawder is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jan 9, 2012, 7:01 PM   #26
Senior Member
 
shoturtle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Frankfurt AM
Posts: 11,348
Default

I would honestly factor out not have to worry about camera maintenance whey you are traveling. My light travel setup where I do not change lens, it will get dust and dirt even without swapping lens. It is just a matter of time. And my travel camera is a mirror less olympus pen with an all in 1 lens.
__________________
Super Frequent Flyer, no joke. Ex Patriot and loving it.
Canon Eos 60D, T1i/500D, Eos1, Eos 630, Olympus EPL-1, and a part time Pentax K-X shooter.

Last edited by shoturtle; Jan 9, 2012 at 7:04 PM.
shoturtle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jan 9, 2012, 7:07 PM   #27
Senior Member
 
Marawder's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Geneva, SWITZERLAND
Posts: 677
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by shoturtle View Post
It is just a matter of time.
Swapping lenses will greatly decrease that time period!
Today I saw a post on Flickr - some user gently tried to clean the mirror of his A33 with a soft brush, but he managed to scratch it...it's that sensitive!!!
__________________
Sony α
dSLR-A580
Minolta AF 35-70mm f/4
Sony DT 50mm f/1.8 SAM

Tamron SP AF 17-50mm f/2.8 XR Di-II LD
Tamron SP AF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 Di USD XLD
Marawder is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jan 9, 2012, 7:40 PM   #28
Senior Member
 
shoturtle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Frankfurt AM
Posts: 11,348
Default

I read that on Flickr as well. It makes sense actually. You want a very thin mirror to lessen the drfraction as light travel through a material. So it has to be thin and very fine.

Yes swapping shorten the period between cleaning. But as tcav said Murphy's law does come into play. I have clean a sensor, but for what ever reason. Just after one day. I had to clean again due to a new spot. Just need to accept when traveling pack a sensor clean kit with you. You never know when a sport can happen. But with a slt, you have 3 times the chance a spot can happen. And it might be a bit higher as the mirror sits more forward so it could be 4x as much as a dslr.
__________________
Super Frequent Flyer, no joke. Ex Patriot and loving it.
Canon Eos 60D, T1i/500D, Eos1, Eos 630, Olympus EPL-1, and a part time Pentax K-X shooter.
shoturtle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jan 9, 2012, 7:46 PM   #29
Administrator
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Savannah, GA (USA)
Posts: 22,378
Default

I don't know why, but for some crazy reason I thought you were in the UK. I guess I'll have to pay more attention to the location I see in all of your posts. Sorry about that. ;-)

I'm not trying to give you a hard time. I'm just trying to help you make a decision you won't regret later, as that Tamron is probably going to be soft using it with a camera that has a 16MP APS-C size sensor.

Sure, the convenience of not having to swap lenses can be nice. About the longest time I've spent using a lens like that was with a Nikon D300 wearing a Nikkor 18-200mm f/3.5-5.6 AF-S VR lens that Nikon sent us with a camera for review purposes (and that lens was selling for around $800 at the time). For example, if you look at the Nikon D300 review here, I took all of the photos in the sample images you'll see after the ISO speed samples (I took all of the photos on the page starting with the race track images). Otherwise, I tend to avoid "all in one" lens types.

http://www.steves-digicams.com/camer...review-11.html

For an all-in-one lens, it's one of the better ones. But, it's noticeably softer as you get further away from the center of the lens. So, what you want to use the images for and the desired print/viewing sizes comes into the equation. If I had to pick a travel lens, it would be as good as any of them. But, I'd want a better lens to shoot with for most purposes, and the Tamron 18-200mm is nowhere near as good as that Nikkor (the Tamron is pretty bad in comparison if you look at reviews and tests of it).

Basically, none of the all-in-one lens models are very good compared to using separate lenses that cover the same focal range. But, quality is subjective and viewing/print sizes also come into the equation.

Again, the higher the sensor resolution, the more demands that are placed on the lens quality needed for best results. So, a lens that was OK with a 6MP or 10MP Sensor may produce soft images on a newer 16MP Sensor. I've already seen comments about that Tamron 18-200mm from users of it that upgraded to newer cameras, where they thought it was OK for center sharpness when stopped down a bit on a 6MP or 10MP model, but soft on a 16MP camera model.

What you're using the images for would also have a bearing on it. IOW, for web sized images, you may be OK with a lower quality lens. But, for larger prints, you may regret spending money on a lens that doesn't get the best out of the camera. Again, as the old saying goes.. Buy cheap, buy twice. ;-)

For example, I bought a Tamron 28-105mm lens a while back on a "whim" to see if I could get more focal range than I have with my Minolta 24-85mm f/3.5-4.5 AF lens (which is my usual "walk around lens", and tests much better than similar Nikon and Canon 24-85mm lenses). I've used that Tamron exactly twice, and consider it to have been a waste of money, as it's image quality is just not good enough compared to the lenses I already have; and it's probably a much better lens compared to the Tamron 18-200mm lens you're looking at. Perhaps I'm just too picky, but sorry, I just can't use a lens with quality that bad, and there is no way I'd consider using a Tamron 18-200mm lens which likely has far worse image quality based on tests I've seen.

Now, I do like some Tamron lenses. For example, I've got a Tamron SP 20-40mm f/2.7-3.5 AF lens that's really sharp. It was the sharpest wide zoom AF lens ever tested by photodo.com a while back (before they sold to newer owners and when they were actually performing testing of lenses with posted MTF charts), as it even tested sharper than most 20mm and 24mm primes on the MTF tests they performed on it. I've also got a Tamron SP 35-105mm f/2.8 AF lens that is pretty good (testing much better than the newer Tamron SP 28-105mm f2.8). It's also got nice color, bokeh and sharpness.

But, those are Tamron SP (Super Performance) lenses, and their optics are in a totally different class than the optics on the Tamron 18-200mm you're looking at (which has much lower optical quality in comparison). In addition, the 20-40mm is a 2x lens (difference between wide and long), and the 35-105mm is a 3x lens (difference between wide and long). From an optical design perspective, you really don't want to go more than 2x to 3x for best quality in a zoom. Otherwise, the optical design tends to be more complex with too many compromises (and a lens like the Tamron 18-200mm has an ~11.1X difference between wide and long).

Now, there have been some advances in optical engineering. That's one reason the newer Tamron 18-250mm and 18-270mm are much better than the older 18-200mm lens. But, those are still not comparable to good lenses with less focal range from wide to long.

Basically, if I were you, I'd stick to buying good lenses, even if that means sacrificing a bit on focal range to begin with. IOW, I'd buy just one good lens with less focal range from wide to long, and use it until you can save up for a better lens, versus compromising that much on image quality by buying an "all in one" lens with lower optical quality, where you may end up buying another lens (or lenses) to replace it with later because you're not satisfied with it.

The camera body is only one part of the equation. The lens quality is the more important part (and the lens is the weakest link in the chain where image quality is concerned).

It's all subjective, and you'll need to decide on the best solution for how you'll use the images (and print/viewing sizes also make a difference, where if you're using smaller sizes, differences in image quality may not be as obvious). Basically, any choice is a compromise in one area or another (focal range from wide to long; distortion, sharpness, color and contrast at various focal lengths; Autofocus Speed, brightness, vignetting,, ergonomics, flare resistance, size, weight cost, etc.). However, I'd lean towards a higher quality lens or lenses to get the best out of a camera like the A35 if I were you.
JimC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jan 10, 2012, 10:15 AM   #30
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Mount Shasta, California
Posts: 1,525
Default

Overall, the reviews for the Tamron 18-200 are quite positive. I researched and found the following.

Amazon: For Canon 146 reviews 61 five star, 36 four stars, 23 three star. For Sony 27 reviews 13 five star 14 four star. Nothing below four stars.
SLR Gear: 7 reviews, 6 recommended the lens
B&H Camera Store: Several hundred reviews. Nikon average 4.4 stars, Canon 4.3 average, Pentax 4.4, Sony 4.4 average. For one star "I hate this lens" only 1 Sony, 0 Pentax, 3 Nikon, 2 Canon.

The vast majority for all sites was four and five stars. This is not the terrible lens being described above.

I have the get expensive glass conversation with fellow shooters and I find they are absolutely deaf to two thoughts and cannot hear otherwise.

I DON'T HAVE THE MONEY! and I DON'T WANT TO CHANGE LENSES!

Certainly, the Tamron 18-200 is not a combination of top glass that would cost upwards of $1,000 or more, but when slapped on a DSLR it is far, far beyond any point and shoot and will provide enjoyable picture taking.
pboerger is offline   Reply With Quote
 
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 5:52 PM.