My Next Lens should be a very good wide-normal zoom lens that doesn't weigh a ton but fits nicely with the DA* 50-135mm. I'm in no rush as I own the DA 18-55.. but many 'better' options exist. Four 17-70 models, several third-party 18-50s and fast 17-50 f/2.8s, the old reliable DA16-45 and the new wide-ranging DA16-85 make the list alongside the DA* 16-50 and LimiZoom 20-40. The Sigmas are odd in that half of them zoom in clockwise while the other half switch directions - so it would be nice to find one that turns the same way as the DA* (that knocks the list down a bit). And hey why not use 67mm filters like the DA* as well? That narrows the field to just a few.
|image from dxomark.com|
The Tamrons are now below $250 fairly often on the used market, just above the DA16-45. It has every feature I'd like except weather seals: range, speed, price, even matching zoom twist! It does not have silent focus like the Sigma HSM and the DA*16-50 HSM, or the DC-motorized 20-40Ltd or 18-50RE.. bummer. Is it worth paying quite a bit more for the first two, or essentially matching the 18-55wr for more money?
EDIT/ P.S. - and the very next day reconditioned Pentax 17-70 lenses dropped to $230ish. That too is a curious thing -- and one that blows all previous analyses to pieces. I sorta liked the DA17-70 with its range, fixed f/4 and 67mm filters. I didn't like three things: SDM only (which is bad if he ever-maligned SDM were to fail), no weather seals, and close to $500 so outgunned by Sigma 17-70s and the Tamron 17-50. Until it's not!
|image & review via|
Two questions remain: did their reconditioning solve anything SDM-wise, we wonders? And is $230 too much for a manual-focus lens not labeled "Samyang"?