All test shots are done hand-held with Pentax K10D in iso 100 with JPG setting on bright image tone with +2 on sharpness and -1 on saturation on some of them. Post processing are done in Picasa
- Very capable close up work with this zoom with 1:2 magnification in long end of the zoom from 180mm to 300mm
- Amazingly sharp for its price and that it is a zoom lens, I paid only $90 for a used copy of this zoom. New one only costs $129.00 as of this writing
- Color are rich and have good contrast and details
- AF is effective but a bit slow in the macro zoom range.
- AF.C is working reasonably well with little bug around flowers
- Though manual focus ring has a large focus throw, it is difficult to use manual focus as the macro only become available in 180mm to 300mm in which the zoom extends to a greater length making it difficult and awkward to focus hand held manually.
- I used f/8.0 throughout the test and use negative Ev compensation to reduce purple fringing in scenes with high contrast.
- Unlike my Pentax SMC-A 50mm f/2.8 where I need to stay very close to the subject like 0.5 feet to get to 1:2 magnification, the Tamron zoom keeps a good distance from the subject like 3 feet away making it easier to setup with tripod and picturing bugs around flowers.