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Any good alternative to Nikkor 24-70 2.8

bwspotbwspot Member
edited August 2011 in Nikon
I am not a pro, but I always wanted to have 24-70 2.8 lens, but it is damn expensive and not sure if worth getting for my d90. Is there any good alternative to it, or it is just to good?
I found this:

but not sure what is it worth?



  • WOW! That looks like a nice contender, looking forward to hearing some opinions from the pros around this forum :-)
  • I was also considering this one:

    because I have d90, so the 17-50 lens becomes 25-75
  • I've done direct comparisons between the Tamron 28-75mm and Nikon 24-70mm on FX.

    The Tamron is pretty much the same in contrast and resolution in the center of the frame at all apertures and focal lengths. Some focal lengths the Nikon wins ever so slightly, at other focal lengths the tables are turned. The Nikon is better in the corners of the frame from F2.8-F5.6. That said, the Tamron performs very well in the corners at F4, the 24-70mm is excellent in the corners at that aperture. On DX the differences will evaporate at around F4.

    The Tamron lens comes in several different AF configurations. The Non BIM version I use will focus much faster than the first series of BIM lens. Not sure about the current BIM lens. The Nikon however is one of the fastest focusing lenses available, right up there with the 70-200VR.

    For the money and weight the Nikon simply can't touch the Tamron. As a small but very high quality travel lens the Tamron is excellent. If I were being paid to shoot a wedding, I would not look past the Nikon 24-70mm. That lens plus a 70-200mm and you have most of your shots covered with premium glass.

    For you, the Tamron is the definite winner if the focal length range suits you.


    William Cowan
  • thx for the comments.
    You did not mention anything in regards to 17-50 Tamron? Is this lens any good?
    Also, i found reviews of the 28-75 and they say that tamron has some issues with focusing and it depends on the hardware you get. If you are lucky then it is ok, if not then you have a problem and must either replace or repair?
    And yes, the nikkor is a beauty , for a hobby shooter, it is a lot of money.
  • I have no experience with the 17-50, but other user comments suggest it is similar in quality to the 28-75.

    I've owned both the BIM and non BIM 28-75s and both of them had very accurate and reliable focus. Neither of them required any focus fine tune. The early BIM version was too slow to focus track a slow walking person. I've only used these lenses on a D700.


    William Cowan
  • any other, major differences between: the Tamron 28-75mm and Nikon 24-70mm?

    price-wise the Nikon is about 5x more expensive than the Tamron over here...
  • mvheystmvheyst Member
    edited August 2011
    I have the Tamron 17-50mm lens. The lens has a "communication problem" with the D300 Nikon body. I need to adjust the exposure to EV = +1 when no flash is attached (to get a proper Histogram), but the EV needs to be = 0 when a speedlight is attached to the camera. I need to make major EV adjustments to get a proper histogram. I don't need to do this with my other lenses. The lens has a tendency to Underexpose. Tamron Service Centre couldn't fault the problem. When I use a light meter, and enter the values in the D300, the exposure is correct.
  • Neil vNNeil vN Administrator
    I've heard good things about the Tamron 28-75 ... and years back, a number of photographers at the one studio that I shot for, all went with the Tamron in favor of the less-than-reliable Canon 24-70mm f2.8

    Also consider a used copy of The Beast .... the Nikon 28-70mm f2.8 AF-S
  • thanks for the insight Neil.
    btw. what about this one? Sigma AF 24-70mm 2.8 EX DG Macro sounds good too because of the added macro bonus :-)
    any thoughts on this one?
  • mvheystmvheyst Member
    edited August 2011
    To compare Camera lenses:


    According to the above tests, the Nikon 24-70mm is the best zoom lens available.

    The Nikon 24-70mm (DxOMark Score = 28), is much better than the Tamron 28-75mm (DxO Mark Score =18).

    Reviews of the Tamron 17-50mm:


  • mvheystmvheyst Member
    edited August 2011
    Tamron 17-50mm on Nikon D300:
  • I have the Tamron 28-75 2.8 and the Nikon 24-70 2.8. I'm very fortunate in that my Tamron is a very sharp copy. I'd say the difference in the two is minimal. It's a great lens.
  • so i bought the tamron 2.8 24-75, i wonder what is the best way to test the sharpness and quality of the lens? I have seen complains that some tamron lenses are sharp and some are not.
  • Neil vNNeil vN Administrator
    mvheyst said: According to the above tests, the Nikon 24-70mm f2.8 is the best zoom lens available.
    I really am not surprised.
  • I tested my new tamron lens and I compared it with my friends 24-70 2.8 nikon lens.
    Sorry tamron, nikon is just sharper and produced nicer colors.
    At least it was my impression. I sent the tamron back.
    I better save that 500 and add it to my future nikon lens.
  • Neil vNNeil vN Administrator
    This kinda ties in with my general feeling about lenses ... that it is "less expensive" in the end to just buy the Nikon lenses. They are superior ... and even if there are off-brand lenses which can match them, I just don't have the TIME and ENERGY to invest in searching for, and finding these lenses which can match the Nikon lenses. It's just simpler to buy the best lens immediately, and get on with the photography work and fun.
  • Neil vN said: I just don't have the TIME and ENERGY to invest in searching for, and finding these lenses which can match the Nikon lenses.
    Amen. I had an ugly experience with the Tokina 11-16 f2.8 a few years ago. I bought the Tokina because I needed a wide angle for a winery shoot and the buzz at the time was that the Tokie was a very good lens.

    So I got the 11-16, tested it out beforehand (generally, the first shots you take with a new lens should NOT be on the job) and all seemed fine. However, at some point during the winery gig only a couple of days later, the lens stopped being able to acquire sharp focus. This, unfortunately, wasn't noticeable in the camera's LCD but it was really obvious in post.

    When I re-examined the lens I found that it couldn't make a sharp frame in either auto or manual focusing mode -- something inside the lens apparently shifted making it unusable. I sent it back to B&H and got the Nikon 12-24 as a replacement. It's worked well from day one and continues to be a stellar performer. I had to go back to the winery and reshoot some frames but it could have been worse -- at least no models were involved in the ruined shots.

    If I'd just gotten the Nikon to begin with...

  • I have to agree with Neil on this one. The Nikon glass is very consistent, and worth the investment. The 24-70 2.8 is my favorite wedding lens. Heavy? Oh, yeah. But it's tack sharp and so useful.

    I went to an AP Model shoot last year sponsored by Sigma, and they had truckloads of lenses to try out. As I asked around, the folks who borrowed them for the day had differing opinions, but they were mostly, "Meh...it's okay. I'm going back to my other glass..."

    Bottom line: you can't go wrong with Nikon glass...unless you drop a 24-70 on your foot.
  • One other thing to consider when getting 3rd party glass it that they depreciate much faster than OE glass. Often times, OE can INCREASE in value over the years. They are usually specialized lenses, but I've never seen a Tamron or Sigma lens come close to it's original price much less increase.

    I had a Tamron once, and the price savings is attractive. But unless it's a specialized range that no one else offers (there are some wide angle ones I can think of), I really don't think I would do it again.
  • Please be aware that besides the fine quality glass you are buying from a brand name manufacturer you are also paying, in many cases, an unnecessary premium, where there are some more convenient alternatives in the market; Sigma, Tamron, or Tokina.
    But this is tech talk many are not even interested in. See and look for contender results in action.
    The Sigma 24~70mm f/2.8 for Nikon here:
  • Neil vNNeil vN Administrator
    A 5 year warranty from Nikon is hardly an "unnecessary premium".

    The link you provided, are images at web-resolution ... hardly a way to discern the performance of the lenses.

  • Neil vN said: A 5 year warranty from Nikon is hardly an "unnecessary premium".
    On that front Tamron USA offers 6 years.

    One other thing I hadn't considered was focusing. True AFS Nikon lenses (not some of the kit lenses that are labeled AFS) have easy focus override. Focusing on some of the Tamron models I used was also not as quiet, fast or smooth as the similar Nikon lens. This may be something to consider as well.

  • Neil vNNeil vN Administrator
    At the photography convention I just attended, there was a photographer who I had to help with his problem regarding soft images. He was using the Tokina zoom, and only at f4 did his lens become usably sharp. WIde open it was (in my opinion) not of any use due to a hazy softness and some optical smearing that I just wouldn't be able to accept.
  • hi, i have D5000 and about to buy new lens.. and i'd like to buy tamron 28-75mm. can i possibly buy this lens but a non-bim for my D5000? many review says that the tamron with bim is not good in focusing... im actually torn between tamron and sigma 24-70mm but in case that tramron no bim is not good probably i'd rather buy the sigma or buy 35mm 1.8mm instead.. please give me some of your comments i really need help. thank you so much!
  • Canon shooter here, so I won't comment on which lens is superior in quality. But since the original post mentions that he's using a crop sensor body, I just wanted to note that I find my 24-70 is not wide enough at 24mm for general use with a crop sensor. I used to own Canon's 17-55mm f2.8 and found that range to be superb for everything from architecture and landscapes to portraits. I know Nikon has an identical lens, and to agree with Neil's above comment, just get the Nikon.
  • another Canon shooter here,
    Neil could you tell me a little more about the less than stellar Canon 24-70 performance you mention earlier?
  • mvheystmvheyst Member
    edited January 2012
    Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM with Canon EOS 5D Mark II
    DxO Mark Ranking = No.163 on list

    Nikon AF-S Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8G ED with Nikon D3s
    DxO Mark Ranking = No. 33 on list
    As noted earlier, the Nikon 24-70mm lens is the best zoom lens on the market.

    The skill & artistic ability of person behind the camera and lens will pobably make a bigger difference in the images than the difference in ranking.

    I made my own conclution regarding Tamron vs Sigma lenses (Tamron 17-50mm vs Sigma 17-50mm) on DX camera (Equal to 24-70mm on full frame:
    It is my opinion that the optical quality of the Tamron is marginally better, but the Tamron lens has several issues like under exposure problems. With 90mm Tamron lens I get battery level low indication with full battery, etc. Problems with the Tamron lenses are unrelated to the optical quality of the lens.
  • Neil vNNeil vN Administrator
    edited May 2012
    This weekend I had someone assist me at a wedding.
    He used a Tamron 28-75mm f2.8 lens.
    Admittedly, *I* didn't use the lens, but the images I got back from this lens (on a D700) were subpar.
    ALL images shot at f2.8 were unusably soft.
    This is not a lens I would recommend. Money spent on it is money wasted that should've gone towards a professional lens.

    Also, it has some of the ugliest bokeh I have *ever* seen in a lens, including the Canon 50mm f1.4 and Nikon 50mm f1.4D lenses.
  • Neil vNNeil vN Administrator
    Kenny .. .the Canon 24-70mm lens has a propensity to back-focus.
    It's also a lens that appears to go out of calibration easily.
    And I also *know* that if I have a second-shooter using this lens, ALL images shot at 24mm, focused on infinity, will be unusable.
    I don't like the lens.
  • StephenStephen Member
    edited May 2012
    The recent Tamron 24-70mm f2.8 VC (vibration control) is another option. However, if you search the internet, reviews of this lens are mixed (some good, some bad).
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