The market segment of fast stabilised tele zooms was long left to the original manufacturers and their high-priced offerings targeting professional photographers. 3rd party options usually lacked comparable specs (most notably optical stabilisation) and usually didn’t offer the same level of optical performance, but at least were available at considerably lower prices.
Nowadays, though, at least Sigma and Tamron have become more confident to be able to compete in this segment, too. Tamron’s first attempt to do so is called SP AF 70-200 mm f/2.8 Di VC USD, offers both optical stabilisation as well as a modern ultrasonic autofocus drive. All this combined with a price tag that’s not cheap in absolute terms, but more likely to fit an amateur’s budget, too.
This is a review of the first generation of the Tamron 70-200/2.8 VC, model A009. The current and updated G2 version (model A025) will also be reviewed, soon.