Tamron SP 24-70mm f/2.8 Di VC USD G2 - Review / Test Report
Lens Reviews - Canon EOS (Full Format)

Review by Klaus Schroiff, published August 2018


When it comes to standard zoom lenses, the class of 24-70mm f/2.8 lenses are the photojournalists' darling. They combine the most popular focal length range with a comparatively high speed. Of course, the OEM products have surely occupied a large portion of that market segment but all the relevant 3rd manufacturers are offering their interpretation of the topic - one of them is the Tamron SP 24-70mm f/2.8 Di VC USD G2 which is Tamron's 2nd generation offering here. It adds an image stabilizer (VC = Vibration Compensation) to the mix which is, interestingly, something that Canon still stays away from in its current product. Needless to say but the Tamron also comes with a (comparatively) attractive price tag of around 1200USD/USD which is about a third less than the Canon variant.

Since moving to its new design language, Tamron lenses are quite attractive products out-of-the-box and their mechanical quality has improved as well. Hallmarks of the new design are the smooth black, metallic main lens body on a titanium-(almond?)colored ring near the mount. Whether the lens body is really made of metal is unclear but quality-wise, it feels good albeit a tad inferior to the Sigma 24-70mm f/2.8 DG HSM OS ART. The focus and zoom ring operate smoothly. That being said the tested sample had an issue with the focus ring - the coupling with the actual focus gear wasn't overly reliable thus when turning the focus ring, it sometimes had no effect on the gear (which was quite annoying during our lab tests). Tamron suggests that the lens is moisture-resistant. Whether this is equivalent in efficiency to weather-sealing is remains to be seen. However, it is commendable that Tamron did spend some thoughts on this. A fluorine coating on the front element also helps to repel water and oily fluids. A petal-shaped lens hood is, of course, part of the package.

The AF speed of Tamron's USD is very high combined with near-silent operations but it still stays short of Canon's USM. That also applies to AF accuracy. Similar to Sigma's USB dock, Tamron is offering a so-called "TAP-in console" (optional) for fine-tuning the relevant lens parameters. A highlight feature is certainly the image stabilizer with a claimed efficiency of 5(!) f-stops. As always, we are recommending to take such claims with a grain of salt but we can certainly confirm that it makes quite a difference - and it's better than Sigma's OS.

Optical construction17 elements in 12 groups including 2xXR, 3xLD, 1x hybrid aspherical, 3x molded aspherical elements
Number of aperture blades9 (rounded)
min. focus distance0.38m (max. magnification ratio 1:5)
Filter size82mm
Hoodpetal-shaped (bayonet mount, supplied)
Other featuresmoisture-resistent, image stabilizer (5 f-stops), fluorine coating