Tamron prices impressively-compact 16-300mm superzoom lens


posted Friday, April 11, 2014 at 5:10 PM EST


Last February, we told readers about the brand-new 16-300mm f/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZD Macro lens. At the time, we knew quite a bit -- that it had a far-reaching 18.8x optical zoom range, was only 3.9 inches long when retracted, and offered a way to turn your SLR into a large-sensor alternative to a superzoom bridge camera -- but there was two key things we didn't know. Those crucial, missing details were the pricetag, and the availability date.

Now, we can fill in those last facts, as the company has announced both pricing and availability. Your bank manager can breathe easy, because the Tamron 16-300mm f/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZD Macro lens is affordably-priced with an expected street price of just US$629. The lens will be available for Canon, Nikon and Sony mounts, but of these, only the first two will be available at launch. You'll be able to purchase the Canon and Nikon-mount versions from May 15, 2014 in the US market. No availability date has been provided for Sony mount at this time.

The lens will, of course, be a compromise given its compact size and vast zoom range, but that's really a given. As well as providing an alternative to a fixed-lens bridge camera, though, it also focuses down to just 15.3 inches across the whole zoom range, for a maximum magnification of 1:2.9 at telephoto, so it offers the potential for macro photography as well. As you'd expect, ultrasonic autofocus and vibration compensation are included in the design, which has 16 elements in 12 groups including three molded glass aspherics, one hybrid aspheric, two low dispersion elements, one extra refractive index element, and one ultra-extra refractive index element.

More details on our sister site, SLRgear.com