How bad are they?
How bad are the Topcon, Sigma, Tamron lenses compared with the Big Boy's productions (Nikon, Canon)?
On second thought, how good are they ? (don't want to offend anyone)
Tamron is pretty good. I have one for my Nikon and it is at least as good as the Nikkors. Maybe better.
The best Tamron SP's are as good as the major manufacturers. Personally I'd never buy a Sigma lens after problems I had with build quality the first fell apart, the 2nd didn't hold focus and the 3rd wouldn't focus at Infinity, I had my money back and bought a different brand
I have 5 or 6 Tamron's - they are all superb.
Can't comment about Topcon
"Top con" sounds suspicious...
Originally Posted by Ian Grant
I've been using a Sigma 28-70 f2.8 commercially for several years and I have to say I'm very pleased with it. Sharp, good colour rendition etc. I use it with both film and digi and I've never had a problem. My son's a photojournalist and he also used the same lens (he's Canon, I'm Nikon) successfully and regularly without issue.
"Why is there always a better way?"
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But - have used second brand for most of my photography. Those you mentioned sans Topcon. Quantaray deserves mention as well.
They were supposedly quite good. Topcon made a high end SLR system that was designed to compete with the Nikon F.
Originally Posted by JPD
However towards the end the name was used on other manufacturers products and nowadays Topcon lenses may bear no resemblance to the original in terms of quality.
I have a manual focus Tamron 28-200mm with a Nikon adaptor, but I dont like it that much. It is my only zoom lens, so I cannot do a fair comparsion. The results have always been a bit too low in terms of contrast. It was my "all in one" solution for freeclimbing - it is not that heavy.
I have used a number of Sigma or Tamron lenses on Nikon over the years. Here are my thoughts on the ones I used long enough to form definite opinions:
Sigma 28mm f/1.8 (the old one with 58mm thread): I had this when I was in college and I loved it, it was fast and certainly sharp enough for the school newspaper work I was doing. Build quality was pretty good; they aren't that common these days.
Sigma 24mm f/1.8 (current model): I bought this based on my experience with the older 28mm Sigma; fast but not particularly good until about f/4 (which sort of defeats the purpose). I didn't like the odd manual-autofocus switch (switch off, then pull the focus ring towards the body...).
Sigma 12-24mm f/4.5-5.6 (35mm *not* digital-only): I love this lens for the wide, wide, wide, angle of view. I am not sure how sharp it really is but 12mm was just amazing, I could shoot in almost any indoor situation. Sold to pay the bills...
Tamron SP 70-210mm f/3.5: Another lens I used in college. I thought it was well built, it is fast and compact and has a good macro range (important to me); nobody ever complained about the quality of the sports photos I made with it (important to the school paper at Appstate).
Some third-party lenses are great; if the lens serves your needs, who really cares who made it?
Good morning, NiceFor88;
As Ian Grant said, the Tamron SP lenses back in the 1970's ran with the major manufacturer's lenses, and frequently beat them. The Adaptall-II system allowed great flexibility in moving from one body to another. I have about eight of their lenses, and four of their teleconverters, but I am still looking for a Tamron SP 200F 2x teleconverter.
I have very limited experience with Sigma lenses. A Sigma 600 mm f 8.0 Mirror lens is on the way to me.
Ralph Javins, Latte Land, Washington
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just tell them; "I use activated silver bromide crystals tor my image storage media."