The Tamron SP 70-200mm F2.8 Di VC USD G2 is the second edition of an incredibly popular telephoto zoom lens. The 70-200mm, F2.8 lens has become a staple in sports and outdoor photography, allowing photographers to get up close and personal with their subjects. This updated Tamron SP lens features their Ultrasonic Silent Drive AF motor and an updated, far more powerful Vibration Compensation (VC) system to increase the image quality of the lens and the situations in which the lens can be useful.
Our sample Tamron SP 70-200mm F2.8 Di VC USD G2 lens featured the Canon EF-mount, allowing us to test the lens with the Canon EOS 5D Mark IV, Canon EOS 77D and the Canon EOS T7i. This lets you see how the camera works with both higher end and basic consumer level models.
- Great Low-light performance with large f/2.8 aperture
- VC (vibration compensation) is great for steadying the camera in all handheld shooting situations
- Adjustable VC settings allow you to specify specific conditions such as panning
- Solid, comfortable build with textured rubber rings
- Focus and Zoom rings turn easily and smoothly
- Moisture-Proof and Dust-Resistant construction is safe for all shooting conditions
- Affordable – Compared to Canon and Nikon lenses
- Zoom ring is too far forward on the lens (personal preference)
- Only available for Canon and Nikon DLSR lenses, no mirrorless interchangeable lens options
- VC and AF/MF switches can get switched easily during transport in a camera bag
- Ultrasonic Silent Drive – Quiet, fast AF
- Maximum F 2.8 aperture
- 37.4 inch minimum focus distance
- 23 elements in 17 groups, including XLD (eXtra Low Dispersion) and LD (Low Dispersion) glass
- VC is equivalent to 5.0 stops of correction
- Optional 1.4x and 2.0x teleconverters available
- eBand and Fluorine Coatings
- Moisture-Proof and Dust-Resistant construction
- Tripod Mount
- Lens Hood included
A larger, heavier lens; the Tamron SP 70-200mm F2.8 Di VC USD G2 features a very solid build that includes a lot of quality glass on the inside. Its size and weight allow you to feel the quality of the lens. The body has been sealed by rubber gaskets that keep out moisture, dust, and sand so you can shoot without worrying about the lens in any shooting conditions. Its powerful VC system lets you shoot handheld, even in low-light, with very sharp results. It can be specified with specific modes, including the preset panning mode for chasing fast moving objects. The Tamron Tap-in console allows you to adjust and program the VC and other features of the lens.
The large lens features a very good design, with a solid construction and easy to find controls. The switches on the body are easy to find and very distinctive when operating — with just a little use, you won’t even have to look for them. The zoom and focus rings are made of textured rubber for soft, secure grip. They turn easily and smoothly, allowing you to zoom and focus with accuracy. While using the lens, I kept reaching to the middle of the lens for the zoom ring, instead of the end of the lens. While this is something I could adjust to with more use, I feel more comfortable supporting the lens and camera from the middle instead of the end. The tripod mount adds a balanced point for the lens, with or without a camera attached. This takes most of the strain off of your tripod or monopod.
Tamron’s USD motor achieves focus quickly and quietly, letting you keep up with your fast-moving subjects. The combination of the large aperture f/2.8 and VC lets you shoot in low-light situations with ease and accuracy. Shooting a single object up close around the maximum aperture can give the lens a little trouble finding the object. Using the manual focus to get the lens close can be a huge help the lens and camera, as well as speeding up the AF process.
Tamron’s AF did very well while recording video with our Canon cameras as well. The camera was able to accurately and smoothly “track” a subject using the Servo AF. Using the Dual Pixel Technology to change AF points with a slower, smooth transition is also possible with this Tamron lens, however, we did notice that the transitions are not as smooth as you will get from a Canon STM lens.
Another great benefit of the Tamron SP 70-200mm F2.8 Di VC USD G2’s large maximum aperture is its ability to produce excellent bokeh. The smooth bokeh effect is great for portraiture or bringing any other subjects into the foreground to grab interest. The long zoom lens also assists with blurring the background, even when the aperture is not wide open, letting you fine tune your effects.
On all of our test cameras, the Tamron SP 70-200mm F2.8 Di VC USD G2 was incredibly sharp in most of our shooting situations. As fast as the lens is, you still need to keep the ISO and camera settings appropriate to avoid motion blur from your subjects, even though the VC is correcting for your movements. The lens was outstanding with color reproduction while holding flaws, such as chromatic aberrations to a minimum. Below you will see samples from the EOS 5D Mark IV (left) and the EOS T7i (right), featuring the same subject but adjusted for the Full-Frame/APS-C crop factor. Both images were taken at 200mm.
The Tamron SP 70-200mm F2.8 Di VC USD G2 is an outstanding option for anyone with a Canon or Nikon DSLR who may be on a slightly tighter budget. The lens is fast, sharp and well built; providing an outstanding package at a great price. A must-have sports, portraits, or any other shooting where you need a telephoto lens and/or great bokeh!
The Tamron SP 70-200mm F/2.8 Di VC USD G2 is their second version of this outstanding and very popular lens. It's sharp, fast and its VC (vibration compensation) allows you to shoot fast-moving subjects with ease, making it the perfect lens for sports and other types of action. With an MSRP of US $1,299.00, it comes in much more affordable than Canon and Nikon's models.