Tamron are well known for budget zoom lenses and it appears they have just announced a new and compact 17-35mm F/2.8-4 Di OSD ultra-wide-angle zoom lens for full-frame DSLR cameras. Carrying the company’s Model A037 designation, the new 17-35mm is not to be confused with the already available Tamron SP 15-30mm F/2.8 Di VC USD, which is twice as more expensive, slightly wider, with a constant f2.8 aperture and also has image stabilization.
The new 17-35mm is utilizes a more budget approach with a variable f2.8-f4 aperture, however it still features superb image quality and easy portability thanks to its lightweight design at just 3.5 in in length and 16.2 oz. in weight, making it “the smallest and lightest in its class”. The new lens has a moisture-resistant construction and the fluorine coating helps with image imperfections.
As far as the optical design, the 17-35mm features a rather complex optical construction comprising of 15 elements in 10 groups with four Low Dispersion elements to minimize axial chromatic aberrations that can occur with ultra-wide-angle zoom lenses. The lens also employs the services of two properly positioned GM (Glass Molded Aspherical) optical elements to correct and control distortion and other geometric aberrations.
Those of you also considering this lens for video applications, would enjoy the 7-blade aperture for some silky smooth, circular-shaped bokeh even when stopped down by two stops from the wide-open aperture. This produces a smooth-edged bokeh in background light spots and avoids weird looking out of focus highlight areas.
The cool thing about this wide angle lens is that it has a rather short close focus distance of just 11 inches, enabling you to get some smooth bokeh in the even at the more extreme wide angle focal lengths.
The advanced coating technology along with proprietary ghosting analysis simulation technology enables a rather high level of backlighting control, which is important for wide angle lenses as they are often subjected to strong light sources. The 17-35mm Tamron also features a BBAR (Broad-Band Anti-Reflection) Coating that is highly effective in reducing reflection, allowing ghosting and flare throughout the entire zoom range to be controlled.
Of the big features of the new 17-35mm is the OSD or Optimized Silent Drive that the AF drive system utilizes in order to ensure quiet operation. According to the manufacturer, that autofocus performance and speed have also been vastly improved.
The Fluorine coating on the surface of the front element has excellent water- and oil-repellant qualities, making it easier to wipe clean and is less vulnerable to the damaging effects of dirt, dust, moisture or oily fingerprints, allowing for much easier maintenance. The coating also provides an enhanced level of durability, and will sustain its effectiveness for years.
Here are some image samples by photographer Glynn Lavender (head over to Tamron’s website here for larger sizes)
Images by Tamron/Glynn Lavender
Images by Tamron/Glynn Lavender
The lens will be available in Nikon F mount starting on September 4, 2018 at a suggested retail price of $599, while the Canon EF mount model will ship later.