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Lens Comparison: Tamron 24-70 f/2.8 G2 vs. Canon 24-70 f/2.8 L II


After taking (another) long break, our colleague photographer Matthew Gore (from lightandmatter) returns and takes a look at two popular zoom lenses – the newer Tamron 24-70 f/2.8 G2 and the Canon 24-70 f/2.8 L II.

This comparison is especially interesting since the 24-70mm zoom lenses are amongst the most popular lenses among professional photographers and the price difference between the Canon and the Tamron isn’t small (about $400 at the moment). So can you save that money and go with the Tamron? This is exactly the question that Gore tried to answer in this somewhat long review.

Both lenses are about the same size and weight (the Tamron is a bit bigger), there are both well built but the Tamron does have a nice advantage in that it has a built-in image stabilizer which the Canon lacks.

In terms of image quality, the Canon is sharper wide open on the wide angle (both in the center and the corners) and sharper in the center but usually not in the corners than the Tamron on the telephoto side.

For practical use – both are very sharp and not very far from each other.

But what about the image stabilization on the Tamron vs. the Canon – it seems that at slower shutter speeds (around 1/10-1/15 sec) the Tamron has a big advantage over the Canon.

What about the AF? Both lenses performed fine on stills when shooting moving subjects but when shooting longer bursts the Canon performed better (at least on the 5D MKIII that Gore used). The Canon wasn’t perfect as well but it seems that

Gore didn’t test the AF in video which is a shame as this is typically a strong dividing point between ‘3d party and first party lenses.

As for pricing, we mentioned that the Canon is more expensive at $1600 compared to the Tamron currently selling for $1200.

You can check out more of videos from our photography gear guides section here on LensVid. We also encourage you to take a look at Matthew Gore’s other videos and we are waiting eagerly for his next one which we hope will come soon.

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