Do you want to know the best Tamron lenses on the market? In this article, we’re going to share our favorite 10 picks, including options for portrait photographers, macro photographers, landscape photographers, and more.
So no matter your preferred genre of photography, you’ll find a lens that will suit your needs!
Best Tamron Lenses in 2023:
*SP stands for superior or super performance (these lenses achieve superior optical performance).
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1. Tamron 28-75mm f/2.8 Di III VXD G2
This new Tamron model is portable, functional, and perfect for walkaround shooting.
The Tamron 28-75mm f/2.8 Di III VXD G2 offers everything that a modern photographer could want, combining a versatile focal range with a wide aperture and impressive clarity.
This lens is a variation on the ultra-popular 24-70mm f/2.8 lens, but Tamron sacrificed 4mm for a much smaller and more compact design. Known for being ultra sharp at its widest aperture, this new addition to Tamron’s mirrorless lineup aims to be a cost-conscious and high-quality way for photographers to level up their casual shooting.
The linear focus motor works decently well with Sony’s mirrorless cameras, and the USB-C-configurable focus controls are a lovely bonus, allowing photographers to customize the lens as required.
2. Tamron 35-150mm f/2-2.8 Di III VXD
As this lens shows, mirrorless technology has truly opened the door to incredible advancements in optics.
Thanks to the explosion in mirrorless technology, new types of sensors, connectors, and features are designed to help lenses to do more than they’ve ever done before – which is why the Tamron 35-150mm f/2-2.8 Di III VXD is so great.
A lens that goes from 35mm all the way to 150mm and is able to maintain ultra-wide apertures is practically unheard of (especially for full-frame cameras). That alone sets this model apart from the competition, and it’s especially great for portrait and event photographers who could really use such impressive versatility. The background bokeh produced by the wide aperture is natural and beautiful, offering great subject-background separation.
The versatility and wide maximum aperture do come at a cost, however, as this lens is fairly heavy and bulky. That being said, telephotos are generally heavy and bulky at f/2.8, so the heft and size certainly shouldn’t surprise any professional photographers!
This lens is built to be a workhorse, sporting great weather sealing and gaskets as well as anti-smudge and anti-glare coatings.
3. Tamron 70-180mm f/2.8 Di III VXD
If you’re willing to sacrifice 20mm on the long end, you’ll get a capable telephoto lens with a smaller and lighter body.
For those with telephoto needs that are willing to sacrifice the last 20mm of the much loved 70-200mm lens, the Tamron 70-180mm f/2.8 Di III VXD is a great pick. Although the 35-150mm F/2-2.8 Di III VXD is a great product, the sharpness you get in a lens that does not have a variable aperture is a thing of beauty.
Although this lens offers most of the classic telephoto lens benefits you would expect (such as durable construction), it does have a few downsides. For instance, autofocus performs poorly on closer subjects, and the barrel extends when zoomed.
That said, the cost balances this out. The lens is also small and lightweight, which is pretty much unheard of for a wide-aperture telephoto model.
4. Tamron 150-500mm f/5-6.7 Di III VC VXD
When distance is a factor, this super-telephoto lens will get you close to the action.
Wildlife and sports photographers, rejoice! The Tamron 150-500mm f/5-6.7 Di III VC VXD is here, and while its maximum apertures are not the widest, there are a lot of great features on this monster of a lens.
First, sharpness is tremendous, which is great for those capturing elusive wildlife from a distance. Even at 500mm, everything is crisp. And the lockable zoom clutch prevents accidental spinning of the barrel as well as barrel slide when traveling.
A built-in tripod collar paired with internal stabilization makes this lens great for slower shutter speed photography. Add on the great build quality and a fluoride coating, and you have a lens that’s perfect for bird and wildlife adventures!
5. Tamron 11-20mm f/2.8 Di III-A RXD
For those who dream of amazing wide glass, this lens is sure to impress (but only on APS-C cameras).
No lineup is complete without an ultra-wide lens, which is where the Tamron 11-20mm f/2.8 Di III-A RXD comes in! If you’re looking to make a small room look massive or capture quirky animal portraits, the expansive glass on this model will surely make you happy.
Featuring many of Tamron’s new lens perks, such as dust, splash, and fluorine protection as well as a sturdy build, this lens has the added benefit of a wide maximum aperture. Although the 11-20mm f/2.8 doesn’t offer internal image stabilization, the amount of light the wide aperture lets in makes up for it as you won’t need to drop to a terribly slow shutter speed.
One note: This lens is for APS-C cameras only. Sorry, full-frame users!
6. Tamron SP 24-70mm f/2.8 Di VC USD G2
The Tamron 24-70mm f/2.8 offers a great range of focal lengths and an impressive maximum aperture. It’s not too pricey, either!
A grand update to an old classic, the Tamron SP 24-70mm f/2.8 Di VC USD G2 is a great pick. There isn’t a whole lot you can do to improve perfection, but Tamron found a way when creating the newest version of this well-loved and much-appreciated lens.
For instance, the stronger stabilization system allows photographers to use even slower shutter speeds, which pushes this model into a whole new realm. Add in improved edge-to-edge sharpness at f/2.8, and you have yourself an absolute powerhouse!
This lens’s price is relatively affordable, too, making it the perfect choice for photographers in need of a 24-70mm f/2.8 that won’t break the bank.
7. Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD G2
Most serious photographers need a 70-200mm lens, and Tamron’s version is amazing.
Another photographer favorite is the Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD G2; it’s used by wildlife, sports, and portrait photographers worldwide. As with the 24-70mm above, there isn’t a lot you can do to enhance an already-perfect lens, but Tamron’s 70-200mm f/2.8 is certainly an impressive performer.
For starters, the stabilization system got an update, and the resolution has been improved throughout the lens’s entire zoom range to give great image quality even at the widest aperture. The build is sturdy and durable, and the lens sports a tripod collar so you can easily attach it to a tripod or monopod.
Coming in at an affordable price for a professional lens, the Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD G2 is a great choice.
8. Tamron 70-210mm f/4 Di VC USD
A telephoto lens built for the traveler, the 70-210 is a great alternative to the 70-200mm lens featured above.
If you need an extra 10mm and don’t mind a narrower maximum aperture, the Tamron 70-210mm f/4 Di VC USD is a nice option. It’s much more affordable than the 70-200mm above, and it has a slew of perks to enjoy.
Thanks to a lightweight and compact build, this lens can remain in your hands for quite a few hours without issue! And with its built-in image stabilization, teleconverter compatibility, optional tripod collar, and dust and splash resistance, the 70-210mm f/4 was certainly designed as a workhorse.
The 1:3 macro reproduction allows for closer focusing than some of the competition, and although the lens does produce some visible vignetting, images still look fairly crisp.
9. Tamron SP 45mm f/1.8 Di VC USD
Occupying that perfect focal length between the nifty 50mm and the beloved 35mm, this lens is certainly great for walkaround photography.
One of our favorite fixed focal-length lenses is the Tamron SP 45mm f/1.8 Di VC USD, an affordable option with a wide maximum aperture. Although this lens can suffer from fringing and color issues when photographing high-contrast subjects, for the price tag and the sharpness, it’s probably worth it.
This lens has a great internal stabilization system, something you don’t see too frequently at this price tag nor at this focal length. The nice weather-sealed design helps you take this lens out in rain and snow, while the close-focusing capabilities let you shoot all kinds of photos. Although the lens is on the heavy side, it’s still powerful and worth a look.
10. Tamron SP 35mm f/1.4 Di USD
This focal length is a fan favorite, and Tamron’s version is fantastically affordable.
Last but certainly not least is the Tamron SP 35mm f/1.4 Di USD, featuring a great focal length and a droolworthy f/1.4 aperture. At under $900, this lens is wildly affordable given the incredible quality it offers.
Although the Tamron SP 35mm f/1.4 Di USD lacks image stabilization, this lens suffers from fewer optical issues than the 45mm. The biggest issue is some vignetting, but you won’t have color fringing plaguing your shots.
Available for DSLRs and mirrorless systems with an adapter, this versatile little guy is a great addition to any photographer’s gear bag.
Pick the Perfect Tamron Lens!
The best Tamron lens is the one that gets you the images you need – though it can be pretty hard to stop at just one!
That said, for mirrorless systems, the Tamron 28-75mm f/2.8 Di III VXD G2 and the Tamron 35-150mm f/2-2.8 Di III VXD both take the top spots. This is due to their size, technology that is unavailable in DSLR cameras, and great communication between the lens and camera body.
For DSLR users, we’d recommend the classic Tamron SP 24-70mm f/2.8 Di VC USD G2. This type of lens is popular for a reason!
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2 thoughts on “The Best Tamron Lenses (10 Picks in 2023)”
Why was the Tamron 100-400 mm lens not on this list?
I have a 18–400 mm. Does Tamron have a new and improved 18–400mm? I like the range of this lens. I do not like the MF lock ring when in AF.