Review of Tamron 80-210mm f3.8-4 Tele-Macro

For the ability to write a review Tamron 80-210 mm f3.8-4 Tele-Macro Adaptall-2 model 103A many thanks Volodymir gulchuk. If you were skeptical about the long name of the lens and its outdated zoom system, then the fact that Tamron 80-210 3.8-4 produces a very, very good image will surprise you.

View Tamron 80-210mm F3.8-4 Macro

View Tamron 80-210mm F3.8-4 Macro

TTX Tamron 80-210 mm f3.8-4 Tele-Macro Adaptall-2 model 103A:
Focal length: 80 - 210mm
Aperture Limits: F / 3.8-4 - 32, AE
Optical design: 10groups and 12 elements
MDF: 0.9cm
Filter Diameter: 58 mm
The weight: 610g
Maximum increase factor: 1 to 2.8

There were several versions of this lens Tamron 80-210 mm f / 3.8-4.0 model 03A (1979-1981) - the first version with a retractable hood. Tamron 80-210 mm f / 3.8-4 Adaptall-2 model 103A - The second version presented in this review. Also, there was and is Tamron 70-210 mm f / 3.8-4 Adaptall-2 model 46A - the latest version with changed focus and 12 elements in 9 groups, earlier versions had 12 elements in 10 groups. The 103A was one of the best-selling models in the Tamron lens line up until the mid-1980s. (source link) The lens combines excellent ergonomics, good image quality and measured price. 103A was the best of the three, as it had an improved optical design compared to version 03A and an all-metal construction compared to the half-plastic model 46A.

Tamron 80-210mm F3.8-4 Macro view from different sides

Tamron 80-210mm F3.8-4 Macro view from different sides

The lens is quite old, it was produced from 1981 to 1986, since the mechanics even felt great in 2012 (the year the review was written), a reasonable conclusion suggests itself that the lens is very high quality. This is confirmed by the inscription Made in Japan.

View of the Tamron 80-210 mm F 3.8-4 Tele-Macro on a modern camera

View of the Tamron 80-210 mm F 3.8-4 Tele-Macro on a modern camera

Key features of the Tamron 80-210 mm f / 3.8-4 Adaptall-2 model 103A lens

1. The lens has a non-standard, in our digital time, method of zooming (zooming). Tamron 80-210 mm f3.8-4 Tele-Macro Adaptall-2 - piston type lens. Here you do not need to twist the zoom ring, but you need to move the piston. The piston itself runs very smoothly, does not leave and drives in under its own weight. And most importantly - the piston does not change the length of the lens - this is the first time I see it. Mostly piston lenses, such as Nikon 35-70mm f / 2.8 AF-D ZOOM-NIKKOR, change their size when moving the piston. Also note that zoom with piston back-to-back. At the closest position of the piston to the camera, the largest focal length is achieved, and when the piston moves from the camera, the focal length, on the contrary, decreases. It is very easy to get used to such a reverse operation scheme, especially since the focal lengths for the position of the piston are indicated on the lens.

Photo on Tamron 80-210mm F3.8-4 Tele-Macro 103A

Photo on Tamron 80-210mm F3.8-4 Tele-Macro 103A

2. The lens has manual focus only. Focusing is carried out using a piston. It seemed to me such a lens device is brilliant. You can while holding onto the piston ring, zoom and focus. The piston ring, at the same time, is also the focusing ring. You can use your hand to move the zoom back and forth and rotate left and right to focus. The focus ring turns around a little less than 360 degrees. The stroke is very smooth, focusing on sharpness is very convenient. Tamron is a huge plus for the unusual zoom focus ring design! The downside is the fact that, when focusing, the front element travels about 3cm forward, while not rotating.

Photo at Tamron 80-210mm F 3.8-4 Tele-Macro 103A

Photo at Tamron 80-210mm F 3.8-4 Tele-Macro 103A

3. The lens can be used both on full frame and on film. Of course, people who have money for a modern digital SLR, full-frame camera are unlikely to use the old Tamron. But still, I would love to shoot him at full frame. On DX (cropped) cameras, the viewing angle will be narrower. EFR in Crop will be 120-315mmwhich turns the Tamron 80-210 mm f3.8-4 Tele-Macro Adaptall-2 into a rather long-range telephoto zoom lens.

Example photo on Tamron 80-210mm F3.8-4 Tele-Macro 103A

Example photo on Tamron 80-210mm F3.8-4 Tele-Macro 103A

4. The lens has Adaptall system, which allows, using the desired adapter, to use Tamron 80-210 mm f / 3.8-4 on different systems. My Tamron 80-210mm f3.8-4 with Adaptall to M42 thread. The lens has an iris diaphragm with the possibility of semi-automatic control. I did not block the diaphragm pusher on the lens, therefore, all images were taken at the maximum available apertures at different focal lengths.

Sample photo on Tamron 80-210mm F3.8-4 Tele-Macro 103A

Sample photo on Tamron 80-210mm F3.8-4 Tele-Macro 103A

5. The lens has multi-coating. The lens tolerates both side and back light well. The older version of the lens had a built-in telescopic hood. The version from this review is without a hood.

Sample photo on the Tamron 80-210 mm F3.8-4 Tele-Macro 103A

Sample photo on the Tamron 80-210 mm F3.8-4 Tele-Macro 103A

6. The lens able to shoot macro. True, not real 1 to 1, but only 1 to 2.8. If use teleconverter, then you can achieve macro 1 to 1.4. The lens has a very interesting scale, which shows the degree of magnification - orange twisted lines that display the magnification at different focal lengths and focusing distances. The depth of field indicator, too, is made unusually, in a classic, at that time, multi-colored style. Each color of the line corresponds to one of the aperture values. In general, due to the number of multi-colored lines and indicators, the lens looks rather unusual.

Sample photo on Tamron 80-210mm CF F3.8-4 Tele-Macro 103A

Sample photo on Tamron 80-210mm CF F3.8-4 Tele-Macro 103A

Picture

The lens gives a sharp, contrasty image over the entire range of focal lengths. I did not block the aperture and always shot on F3.8-F4.0 and got a very high-quality picture. I think that with an increase in pure F, sharpness will also increase. HA well fixed, color rendering is very pleasant. Distortion and vignetting are almost invisible on the cropped matrix. The bokeh is excellent, the only thing is that green stains appear quite strongly in the zone of not sharpness. They say that at the full frame the edges will be slightly softened, but on the crop the picture is sharp across the entire field of the frame.

Sharpness on Tamron 80-210mm 3.8-4. Crop 1 to 1, quality 100, without processing

Sharpness on Tamron 80-210mm 3.8-4. Crop 1 to 1, quality 100, without processing

Personal impressions

I liked the lens, even more than the legendary autofocus Nikon 70-210mm f / 4 AF. The difference in aperture 4.0 and 3.8 is only 10%.

Sample photo on Tamron 80-210mm CF F3.8-4 Tele-Macro 103A

Sample photo on Tamron 80-210mm CF F3.8-4 Tele-Macro 103A

How to use on modern digital SLR cameras?

The best option to use the Tamron 80-210 mm f3.8-4 Tele-Macro Adaptall-2 on modern digital photography equipment is to install the native Adaptall adapter under the desired mount. If this is not possible, then you can do as I do. I shot with Tamron 80-210 mm f3.8-4 Tele-Macro Adaptall-2 model 103A with M42 adapter on Nikon system using adapter KP-42 / N. The ability to focus on 80mm disappeared at 3 meters, the ability to focus on 210mm disappeared beyond 5-6 meters.

Sample photo on Tamron 80-210mm CF F3.8-4 Tele-Macro 103A

Strong side light on Tamron 80-210mm CF F3.8-4 Tele-Macro 103A

How to use old manual lenses with a non-native mount on the Nikon system - you can read on the page Soviet Optics. For Canon with infinity, everything is much simpler, you just need an adapter M42-Canon EOS, in more detail in the section Old Canon Lenses.

Sample photo on Tamron 80-210mm CF F3.8-4 Tele-Macro 103A

Sample photo on Tamron 80-210mm CF F3.8-4 Tele-Macro 103A

Sample photos on Tamron 80-210 mm f3.8-4 Tele-Macro Adaptall-2 model 103A

All photos are taken on Nikon D40, without processing. Shot in RAW -> JPEG, Q80%,  BB auto, resizing up to 1600 * 1200 + imprinting data with EXIF.

Catalog of modern Tamron lenses can look at this link.

In the comments, you can ask a question on the topic and they will answer you, as well as you can express your opinion or describe your experience. For the selection of photographic equipment, I recommend large catalogs, for example E-Catalog. Many little things for the photo can be found on AliExpress.

conclusions

Tamron 80-210mm f3.8-4 - excellent manual zoom telephoto with neither big nor small aperture. Great for portraiture, wildlife and amateur macro.

Material prepared Arkady Shapoval... Look for me on Youtube | Facebook | VK | Instagram | Twitter.

Add a comment: Anton

 

 

Comments: 57, on the topic: Review of Tamron 80-210mm f3.8-4 Zoom-Macro

  • KalekseyG

    My summer

  • KalekseyG

    Yet

    • KalekseyG

      That stupid, threw the wrong branch!

  • Vladimir

    I shot it with a Nikon d40 lens, as it didn’t make friends with him. And it’s hard to focus, and the picture seems to be soapy at the maximum focal length. Or I’m finding fault with it too much. Although the near objects seemed to work fine.

  • Vladimir

    Still.

  • Vladimir

    ...

  • Vladimir

    ,,,

  • Andrei

    Here in the review it is written about the non-rotating front element when focusing ... and in other reviews it rotates :)

    • KalekseyG

      Yes. He is spinning. I already wrote here.

  • Mikola

    ... I got this (103A) on the market, and for a ridiculous "bag" and ordered the adapter for the canon mount and YOU are right, interesting ... but if you increase F, you get a high-quality picture .. 3.8-4 is not so bad ..- interesting and it's easy with him ... thanks ARKADY for the material .. very interesting laid out ..

  • Sasha And

    Strange. My specimen is so good at being open, especially if you don't get into focus a bit. I thought of buying something a little more universal than the Yu-37A, but something went wrong.

  • Anton

    Hello! If you use such a lens in conjunction with the Canon EOS 650D, is it really possible to get good photos of the moon?

    • Ilya

      I tried on a cropped Sonya quite well.

  • Ilya

    The lens is just a bomb! At its price, it is not inferior to the 70-200 l-series from the canon. sharpness is excellent, good bokeh, convenient control, and all this for a little money I work with him through the M42 on two cameras: Sony A350 and Canon 5d and both have excellent results. ps And by the way, macro works well.

    • witness

      Good afternoon, Ilya!
      Tell me, how do you focus on the Canon 5D with it?
      Do you have an adapter with a chip?
      Confirms focus with a green dot?
      Or without a chip, and you sharpen in the eyepiece by eye?
      Thank you.

      • Ilya

        Hello! An adapter with a chip, but mostly used to focus "by eye" this machine is often mistaken.

  • Gennady

    Still, I never figured out how to install it on Nikon.

    • Alexander

      an adapter is put on the lens.
      For example, on my Nikon D5200 with F mount, the lens came up with an adapter for Nikon AI-E.

    • Alexander

      .

  • Alexander

    I got it for free in excellent condition and full minced meat (with a wardrobe trunk, a hood and even filters). At first I wanted to sell, because I thought it would not fit my Nikon, but it turned out that the lens with the adapter for Nikon is just right! so after reading about him I decided to leave and try in business. I don't have a TV set, and I also need to shoot in manual mode. thanks to the author for the review!

  • CluBBerG

    I bought it myself, but I can't put it on Nikon D3500. No one can help? It turns out a couple of millimeters more. Nikon KP-A / N shank did not fit ..

Add a comment

christening photographer price Photography for lovers

Copyright © Radojuva.com. Blog author - Photographer in Kiev Arkady Shapoval. 2009-2021

English-version of this article https://radojuva.com/en/2012/02/obzor-tamron-80-210-mm-f-3-8-4-zoom-macro/?replytocom=335652