9 out of 10 points and recommendedf2.8, build quality, creamy bokehno supplied lens hood, short tripod collar, very soft at 200mm f2.8 min focus distance
First of all, let me echo what some have said.reviewed June 27th, 2007 (purchased for $900)
-The lens is very soft at 200mm f2.8, min focus distance (macro). So don't bother using it wide open for macro, the DOF is too shallow for any good. You've got to stop it down to f8 or more for better sharpness.
-However, the lens is very sharp at 200mm f2.8 at most other focusing distance, just not at its minimum distance.
-Tripod collar is too short, will have to flip it up to hold the zoom barrel. I hold my hood most of the time so it's not too much of a concern for me.
-No supplied hood, but comes with a nice, though useless case. It's a nice touch that the older lenses come with the leather case, but it'd be more practical if it came with a hood instead. Buy a HN-28 OEM metal hood from ebay, it's better than the HB-7 if you plan to use a CPL. However, you will need a hood cap of some sort to cover the hood with the HN-28.
-Pretty heavy, but that's what you'd expect froma 2.8 pro lens.
10 out of 10 points and recommendedSharpness, Price, Speed, BokehPlastic
Definitely one of the sharpest nikkor lens, you just wouldn't expect to get it at $100 now would ya?reviewed June 27th, 2007 (purchased for $90)
The lens is even slightly sharper than the 50mm 1.4. Speed is really not much of an issue with this lens, and the difference in bokeh between the 1.8 and 1.4 is so subtle that i didn't think the 1.4 is worth 3X the price of the 1.8.
9 out of 10 points and recommendedGreat Optics, f2.8Noisy
Tamron only builds Plastic Lenses, we all know that. However, the build quality of this lens is very good when compared to other plastic lenses. However, relatively speaking, the build quality is no where near the 17-55mm 2.8 nikkor.reviewed June 27th, 2007 (purchased for $398)
When you buy a Tamron, you are paying for it's optics. The 17-50mm's IQ is virtually identical to the 17-55mm 2.8 nikkor, but at 1/4 of the price.
Zoom ring is moderately damped, which is good so that it doesnt creep too much. The zoom ring is also very linear, comparing to my old wide zoom - nikkor 18-70mm, the 18-70mm's zoom ring is a joke.
Beware that there are 2 different versions of this lens - those made in Japan and those made in China. And you've guessed it, those made in Japan ones are better. Apparently the China made ones have overexposure, and front/back focusing problems.