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Tamron 70-210mm F4 Review

Tamron 70-210mm F4 Review

The Tamron 70-210mm F4 Di VC USD is a thoroughly good lens made outstanding by its bargain price. Versus the Nikon 70-200mm F4, the Tamron 70 210mm costs less than half as much whilst delivering similar performance.

Whilst cheap, the Tamron 70 210mm does not skimp on features such as image stabilization, modern-day lens coatings, and water resistance. Furthermore, its focal length of 210mm and its minimum focus distance of 95 centimeters is the best in class. Although a superb lens – is it the lens for you? Jump to Conclusion

This review tests the Tamron 70-210mm F4 for Nikon F Mount.


The Tamron 70-210mm F4 is an attractive, well-made lens. At 850 grams, the Tamron 70 210 weighs half as much as the Tamron 70-200 F2.8.

In keeping with other recent Tamron lenses, the 70-210mm F4 features a 67mm filter thread. Control-wise, the 70-210mm F4 features tactile, well-dampened zoom, and focus rings that feel good to use.

On the side of the lens, you will find two switches. One is used to toggle between manual and automatic focus whilst the second operate as an on-off switch for the image stabilization.

The included lens hood is completely functional but a little cheap. In contrast, the front and rear lens caps are excellent.

Tamron 70-210mm F4 Ergonomics

Tamron 70-210mm F4 Review

One thing you may take issue with is the placement of the Tamron 70-210mm F4’s control rings. With the 70-210mm, Tamron has placed the zoom ring at the end of the lens with the focus ring near the lens mount. In other words, the Tamron 70-210mm F4’s control rings are in the opposite order to most other lenses.

Therefore, you must hold the Tamron 70 210mm F4 in a central position and operate the zoom ring with your index finger.

For some reviewers, this layout is intolerable. However, as an owner, I had no choice but to adjust, and once I did, I found the Tamron’s layout to be superior.

For instance, the Tamron layout allows me to support the lens in a centralized position and zoom the lens without moving my hand and disturbing my composition. This is particularly useful when you are simultaneously trying to frame and zoom-in on moving subjects.

However, there are two minor drawbacks. First of all, I do suffer some disorientation when switching back to lenses with the traditional layout. Secondly, if you like to reverse your lens hood for storage sake, doing so blocks access to the Zoom ring.

Otherwise, the Tamron 70-210mm is pretty standard for a lens of its class. Both Zoom and Autofocus are internalized and as a result, nothing spins and the lens dimensions remain constant.

Tamron 70-210mm F4 Review

Tamron 70-210mm F4 Headline Features

Image Stabilization

Tamron only offers two modes of image stabilization – on and off. In contrast, the Nikon and Canon alternatives offer multiple modes for panning, etc.

95 Centimeter Minimum Focus Distance

Focusing on a subject 95cms away with the Tamon set to 210mm provides a class-leading magnification of x0.32.

Moisture Resistance

Although ‘moisture resistance’ is hardly an exact measure, it’s there. A fluorine-coated front-element helps keep your lens clean.

Tamron 70 200mm F4
Tamron 70-210mm F4 Sealing. Credit – Tamron USA

Tamron 70-210mm F4 Performance


The Tamron 70-210mm will move from minimum distance to infinity in a little more than half a second and seldom hunts in low light. Furthermore, focus accuracy is excellent.

Since all focusing takes place internally, there are no spinning focus rings or changes to its dimensions. Whilst autofocus is very quiet for photography, it’s gentle whirs may be picked up on video.

Overall, the Tamron 70 200 F4 is fast and confident performer suitable for capturing faster subjects.

Image Stabilisation

Although Tamron advertises 4 stops worth of stabilization, in reality, the Tamron 70-210mm F4 provides between 2 and 3 stops. What’s a Stop in Photography.

As a result, you can get sharp results shooting at 210mm with a 1/50th of a second shutter speed. As good as this is, there’s better. How to avoid camera shake with the reciprocal rule.

Image Quality

The Tamron 70-210mm F4 is a very sharp lens. Furthermore, the Tamron is sharp at its maximum F4 aperture. Therefore you will never feel like using a smaller aperture for the sake of improving image quality.

The notable exception is when you set your lens to its class-leading minimum focus distance. For the sharpest results, it pays to step back a little from that impressive 95cm limit. How to take sharper photos.

The Tamron 70-210mm F4’s 9 rounded aperture blades produce smooth, attractive bokeh making the Tamron a nice lens for portraits.

However, a downside of rounded aperture blades is poor sun stars. On the other hand, the Tamron 70 210mm F4 handles glare very well.

Should you buy a Tamron 70-210mm F4?

The Tamron 70-210mm is effectively half the lens the Tamron 70-200mm F2.8 is. Specifically, it’s half the price and half the weight whilst delivering comparable image quality.

Versus the Nikon AF-S 70-200mm F4, there’s not really much to say in terms of performance. Having used both, the main point of difference is the price. See the best lenses for Nikon FX DSLRs

In fact, the Nikon costs as much as two Tamron 70 210mm lenses. And while the Nikon is a fine lens, it certainly is not twice as good as the Tamron and perhaps, no better at all.

If you are trying to choose between the Tamron 70 210mm F4 and an F2.8 equivalent, it really comes down to auto focus.

If you need to autofocus in poor light, an F2.8 lens provides your camera’s autofocus system with twice as much light as an F4 lens. As a result, there are scenarios where the F2.8 lens will outperform an F4.

However, many will be better off going for the smaller, lighter, and cheaper Tamron 70-210mm F4. With the F4, you get great image quality in a lens you are actually willing to carry with you.

Overall, whether you shoot sports (in good light) or portraits, the Tamron 70-200mm F4 is a great lens elevated to excellence thanks to its bargain price.

Buy a Tamron 70-210mm F4

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