Cologne, Germany—Tamron launched the SP 150–600mm f/5–6.3 Di VC USD G2 (model A022) ultra-telephoto zoom lens. This new generation G2 lens builds on the SP 150–600mm f/5–6.3 Di VC USD (model A011) that launched in 2013.
The G2 version was developed to provide superior optical performance with today’s high-resolution DSLRs and to add improvements to several features. These include speed and accuracy of autofocus (AF) and VC (vibration compensation). Also, new features were added: a flex zoom lock mechanism and fluorine coating. The lens, which has a metal lens barrel, will soon come in Canon and Nikon mounts. A Sony A-mount will be available at a later date.
The lens incorporates three LD (low dispersion) elements to eliminate axial and transverse chromatic aberrations. It also features an upgraded optical construction (21 elements in 13 groups) and leverages improvements in manufacturing technology.
Tamron’s eBAND (Extended Bandwidth & Angular-Dependency) coating was deployed on the lens element surface to eliminate ghosting and flare. In addition to antireflection characteristics, it’s said to provide higher light transmission. Combined with BBAR (Broad-Band Anti-Reflection) coatings, flare and ghosting are claimed to be imperceptible.
In addition, Tamron’s manufacturing technology made it possible to reduce the MOD (minimum object distance) to 86.6 inches compared to 106.3 for model A011. This allows for tele-macro photography with its 1:3.9 maximum magnification ratio.
The new lens also is equipped with a responsive USD (ultrasonic silent drive) ring-type motor. Its AF speed is significantly improved from the previous model to enable accurate high-speed focus when capturing moving subjects.
In addition, when shooting with AF, the full-time manual focus override allows users to make fine-focusing adjustments manually, without having to switch between modes.
The lens’s VC effectiveness is equivalent to 4.5 stops, based on image stabilization performance levels established by CIPA (Camera & Imaging Products Association) when using VC 3 mode. The lens has three VC modes, so users can choose the optimum mode for the situation, such as when panning. The standard mode is VC 1, which strikes a balance between the stability of the viewfinder image and the stabilization effects. VC 2 is exclusively used for panning. VC 3 prioritizes the stabilization of the captured images and forgoes the stabilization of the viewfinder image.
Additionally, a new VC mode can be programmed with the optional Tamron TAP-in Console. Users can overwrite VC 1 with a new VC mode that allows stabilization to be engaged constantly for videography purposes. In this mode, the LCD screen is used.
Furthermore, the flex zoom lock mechanism quickly locks or unlocks the zoom at any position by sliding the zoom ring. Photographers can shoot from any angle without the zoom extending unintentionally. The lens also features the conventional zoom lock switch to prevent unwanted barrel extension during transportation.
In addition, an electromagnetic diaphragm system, which is a standard feature for Canon-mount lenses, is now employed in the Nikon-mount lens. More precise diaphragm and aperture control is possible because the diaphragm blades are driven and controlled by a motor through electronic pulse signals.
The front surface of the lens element is coated with a protective fluorine compound that is water and oil repellent. This makes the lens surface easier to wipe clean and less vulnerable to the damaging effects of dirt, moisture and fingerprints. For greater protection when shooting outdoors, there are leak-proof seals throughout the lens barrel.
The lens’s lightweight tripod mount is compatible with an Arca-Swiss style quick release plate. The new textured grip and Arca-Swiss style interface were added to enhance speed and utility. And because the tripod mount is made of lightweight magnesium, it is easier to carry.
Tamron also announced two exclusive teleconverters that are built to perfectly match the optics of the new G2 lens. They offer 1.4x and 2x magnification, and provide a maximum zoom range up to 1200mm. The teleconverters extend the focal length of the master lens, making it possible to take pictures in farther ultra-telephoto ranges.
Tamron’s SP 150–600mm f/5–6.3 Di VC USD G2 lens (model A022) has a suggested retail price of $1,399. tamron-usa.com