Tamron 14-150mm f/3.5-5.8 Di III Review

October 31, 2014 | Mark Goldstein | |

Introduction

The Tamron 14-150mm f/3.5-5.8 Di III is a wide-angle to telephoto super-zoom lens designed for Micro Four Thirds compact system cameras. Boasting a 10.7x zoom range, compact and lightweight design, a 52mm filter thread and a metal lens barrel exterior, the Tamron 14-150mm f/3.5-5.8 Di III costs around £389 / $589 and is available in silver or black.

Ease of Use

The Tamron 14-150mm f/3.5-5.8 Di III is quite light considering the 10.7x zoom range on offer, weighing in at 285g. It certainly doesn't feel too weighty in the hand and proved to be well balanced on the Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX7 that we tested it with. The lens does extend by about an extra 4cm when fully zoomed out to 150mm, where it starts to look a little incongruous.

Tamron AF 18-270mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZDThe Tamron 14-150mm f/3.5-5.8 Di III lens attached to the Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX7

Tamron AF 18-270mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZDThe Tamron 14-150mm f/3.5-5.8 Di III lens at 14mm

Tamron AF 18-270mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZDThe Tamron 14-150mm f/3.5-5.8 Di III lens at 150mm

Tamron AF 18-270mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZDThe Tamron 14-150mm f/3.5-5.8 Di III lens at 14mm

Tamron AF 18-270mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZDThe Tamron 14-150mm f/3.5-5.8 Di III lens at 150mm

Tamron AF 18-270mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZDThe top of the Tamron 14-150mm f/3.5-5.8 Di III lens

The rear element is surrounded by a metal lens mount and hides 17 elements in 13 groups, including one LD (Low Dispersion) glass element, two AD (Anomalous Dispersion) glass elements, two Molded-Glass Aspherical elements and one Hybrid Aspherical element. That's a lot of glass for the light to go through and is under continuous threat of dispersion. There are seven aperture blades for the aperture range which reaches a minimum of f/22. There's no distance scale or depth of field scale.

Tamron AF 18-270mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZDThe Tamron 14-150mm f/3.5-5.8 Di III lens at 14mm

Tamron AF 18-270mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZDThe Tamron 14-150mm f/3.5-5.8 Di III lens zoomed out to 150mm

Tamron AF 18-270mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZDThe front of the Tamron 14-150mm f/3.5-5.8 Di III lens

Tamron AF 18-270mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZDThe rear of the Tamron 14-150mm f/3.5-5.8 Di III lens

There's just one switch located on the Tamron 14-150mm f/3.5-5.8 Di III lens, a simple lock to keep the lens at 14mm by placing the switch into a carved divot in the barrel. There's no switch to toggle between the AF/MF focusing mode, and there's no Vibration Compensation available either.

Tamron AF 18-270mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZDThe front of the Tamron 14-150mm f/3.5-5.8 Di III lens

Tamron AF 18-270mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZDThe rear of the Tamron 14-150mm f/3.5-5.8 Di III lens

Tamron AF 18-270mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZDThe Tamron 14-150mm f/3.5-5.8 Di III lens in-hand

The Tamron 14-150mm f/3.5-5.8 Di III features a form of stepping motor which provided almost silent, quick and generally accurate auto-focusing on the Panasonic GX7 that we tested it with. The manual focusing ring is a little slim, though, and has no hard stops at either end.

Tamron AF 18-270mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZDThe Tamron 14-150mm f/3.5-5.8 Di III lens with the supplied lens hood fitted

Tamron AF 18-270mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZDThe Tamron 14-150mm f/3.5-5.8 Di III lens with the supplied lens hood fitted

The lens is supplied with lens caps and a small petal-shaped lens hood - there's no bag included. The filter size is 52mm.

Focal Range

The focal range of the Tamron 14-150mm f/3.5-5.8 Di III is extremely broad. It's possible to encompass a large amount of photographic styles when using a lens such as this.

At 14mm, the field of view is 75°22'.

Tamron AF 18-270mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZDField of view at 14mm

At the 150mm end, the field of view is 8°15'.

Tamron AF 18-270mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZDField of view at 150mm

Chromatic Aberrations

The Tamron 14-150mm f/3.5-5.8 Di III does suffer from chromatic aberrations, more so at the edges of the frame when shooting wide-angle.

Tamron AF 18-270mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZD Tamron AF 18-270mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZD

Vignetting and Distortion

With the Tamron 14-150mm f/3.5-5.8 Di III wide open, you can see some noticeable light fall-off in the corners throughout the zoom range. Stopping down helps, although to completely get rid of this phenomenon, you will need to use an f-stop of f/8 or smaller. There's also some barrel distortion at the 14mm setting.

Tamron SP 24-70mm F/2.8 Di VC USDVignetting at 14mm

Tamron SP 24-70mm F/2.8 Di VC USDVignetting at 150mm

Macro

The Tamron 14-150mm f/3.5-5.8 Di III has a closest focusing distance of 50cm and a maximum magnification ratio of 1:3.8 at the 150mm focal length.

Tamron AF 18-270mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZDClose-up performance

Bokeh

Bokeh is a word used for the out-of-focus areas of a photograph, and is usually described in qualitative terms, such as smooth / creamy / harsh etc. In the  AF 28-300mm f/3.5-6.3 Di VC PZD lens, Tamron have employed an iris diaphragm with seven rounded blades, which has resulted in nice bokeh in our view. We do realise, however, that bokeh evaluation is subjective, so we've included some 100% crops for your perusal.

Tamron AF 18-270mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZD Tamron AF 18-270mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZD
   
Tamron AF 18-270mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZD Tamron AF 18-270mm F/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZD

Sharpness

In order to show you how sharp this lens is, we are providing 100% crops on the following pages.

Entry Tags

review, samples, test, lens, compact system camera, mirrorless, csc, super-zoom, micro four thirds, sample, zoom, telephoto, f3.5, tamron, 14mm, 150mm, 14-150mm, 10.7x, Tamron AF 16-300mm F3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZD, f5.8