I love that this lens is so versatile! This 50-400mm F/4.5-6.3 Tamron lens is a great telephoto zoom that does it all: Wildlife, Sports, Landscapes, Portraits, Macro, Travel and Street Photography. It’s very compact and easy to travel with. We tested it out in a lot of different scenarios. It really does have an incredible range.
This is Jay P. Morgan. Today on The Slanted Lens I’ve got Janice here with me. Hi guys! Janice is going to help me take a look at the 50-400mm Tamron Lens. This is a 4.5-6.3 lens and a very interesting lens. It’s kind of a throwback to a time when they made larger ranges of lenses like this. But in a very serious way, I mean Tamron has really invested in making this a usable, great telephoto from that 50 to 400 millimeters. I love that range because I’m in a portrait range on the low end into a great telephoto. This is really great for landscapes and for wildlife, for sports, for portraiture. Just an excellent application and a wide range. It’s in that same ecosystem that Tamron has done all their lenses in. It’s that 67 millimeters so it’s very small in the front. It’s very compact. If you look at this compared to a lot of 100 or 400s out there this is very compact. It gives us a lot of different options. You can only talk about specs so long. You have to go out and shoot. So we’re going to shoot some images here and we’ll just check in as we go to see what we’re learning.
So the bokeh with this lens is really pretty at 50 millimeters. It is round, it is soft, it is absolutely gorgeous. When I get out to 400 millimeters it starts to oblong a little bit in the corners. But it’s just a beautiful looking bokeh. Take a look at some of these images with bokeh in the front and the back. It’s just beautiful. I’m shooting through the trees so you see this kind of beautiful softness that surrounds her front and back.
The chromatic aberration with this lens is very minimal. I’ve got that direct sun rim lighting her from behind and I’m not seeing that reddish kind of line you get if you have a bad chromatic aberration. It’s not showing up. So I’m getting a beautiful result when I’m working in that direct sun coming right into the lens. It just, it really holds. It does not flare. It holds the image and gives me a beautiful image.
These images are sharp like corner to corner. They’re very sharp, especially at 50 millimeters. When you have 400 millimeters it may soften just a hair in the corners, but not really a lot that you can perceive. But it’s super sharp all the way through. Just a great sharp lens. You would expect that from Tamron because they price this lens and they put the features into this lens that make it a professional quality, high-end lens. Tamron’s been doing this. They have these unique ranges of lenses, zoom lenses. But super high end and super high quality, professional quality lenses.
Another feature that really adds a lot of depth to this lens is the fact that you get some macro capability. At 400 millimeters I get a one to four ratio.So it’s going to be 1/4 actual size in the frame at 400 millimeters. So that’s about 59 inches. But if I come in on 50 millimeters it’s super close. It’s about 9.8 inches. Which means it’s closer than the lens hood. You can’t have the lens hood on to get this close.
I did some bees. I did some of my bees at my little beehive bee yard. And take a look at some of this footage of the bees that are coming and going in that with that 50 millimeter. Look how close I had to get right in there. And I got a great macro capability. That adds a lot of depth to this lens. It’s not just a great 400. It’s not just a great portrait lens. But it also gives you macro capability which makes it super useful.
So I tried really hard to sneak up on some deer. It’s a great lens for wildlife. I had to get a little closer than I did. I got some okay shots. But you know what, the autofocus worked extremely well. It’s very fast. That VXD extreme torque drive, that’s linear drive autofocus drive. It’s so quick and it’s so quiet. It works extremely well with this lens. So it worked exactly the way Sony and Tamron would have it work.
The auto focus for humans was excellent. It stayed right on Janice as I was photographing her. I didn’t lose very many images as she walked towards me as I’m looking down the street at the building at City Hall.
I also I switched to bird eye detect at one point and got a couple of shots of a dove that was just hanging out. That worked out really well. Look how sharp those things are on that Dove’s eye.
It’s excellent also for sports. It’s fast and we were able to shoot some rollerblade hockey. You see it’s catching the puck. We’re catching the action. It just worked extremely well in that situation. The autofocus was on. I was able to shoot those bursts of 15 frames a second. You can’t get to 30 frames a second with the A1 or the A9. That’s one limitation that they have put on second party lenses. But still, I got great shots and it gave me some great images in that hockey situation. So there you go, wildlife, sports, autofocus from birds, animals and people. So it was working really well.
So the lens itself is what really reveals the fact that this is a professional high-end lens. It has the port so you can hook it in a USBC Port so you can connect it to Tamron software to be able to change the function of most all of these buttons and rings here. You can turn this into an aperture ring if you want to. You can choose which direction it focuses.
It’s also got a custom switch here that’ll go from one, two or three that allows you to have three different custom options. You can program with that one, two or three. You can also program this button to be an autofocus limiter. There’s no reason, sometimes, for the motor to have to search all the way out and all the way back from far to near. It just makes it so slow. You can limit the distance that the lens has to travel to find focus. And that’s going to speed up your autofocus a lot. You have a lock on the side of the lens to lock the lens so that it won’t creep in and out. Not a problem I’ve had. This lens is very tight and not an issue as far as any kind of creeping out. But it does have a locking mechanism for that.
The Lens comes with vibration compensation. You can choose between one or two. One is for standard handheld vibration compensation. Number two is if you’re going to pan. And number three is if you just want to turn it off.
It does not come with a collar, a foot. I love the foot because I just love that telephoto collar I can put on here and put it on ARCA Swiss on a tripod. Because I would use a lens like this a lot with a tripod anytime I’m shooting wildlife and things I’m probably going to be mostly on a tripod. And it allows me to shoot quickly. And I just feel like you’re going to get a higher percentage of really good sharp images. Even though you have vibration conversation it just ups the numbers. You can go from 85 to 95 percent.
So there it is. There’s a look at the Tamron 50-400mm F/4.5-6.3 lens. What’d you think there Janice? I loved it. It was easy and smooth. You didn’t have to keep changing out the lenses. It was quick. There you go. It really does have an incredible range from 50 to 400 millimeters. It also has the ability to program it which is really moves it into a professional type lens when you can program the lens, change the features and adapt it to how you work. You’re not going to be unhappy with the sharpness of this lens. It is sharp through 50 into 400 millimeter edge to edge. If there is any kind of vignetting in the corners of this it’s very minimal. Easy to take out. And there really isn’t that much that I’ve seen. So a great offering from Tamron! Excellent job! And keep those cameras rollin’ keep on clickin’!
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