Tamron SP 90mm f/2.8 Di VC USD Macro £580, $750
New, improved and simply sensational
This is a new, redesigned edition of Tamron’s 90mm VC USD lens. It still includes an LD (Low Dispersion) element but has two rather than one top-grade XLD (eXtra Low Dispersion) elements. Further highlights include dual nano-structure coatings, and a muck-repellent coating on the front element. Other trappings include a fast ring-type ultrasonic autofocus system that’s optimised for macro shooting, and a threeposition autofocus limiter switch.
All the high-tech thrills are wrapped up in a weather-sealed build, but perhaps the biggest news is the newly designed ‘hybrid’ optical stabiliser, which counteracts axial shift (up-down or side-to-side movement) as well as the usual angular vibration (wobble).
The hybrid stabiliser works better than most at close focusing distances, but is still of little benefit in full 1.0x macro mode. Sharpness and contrast in close-up shooting are the best of any lens on test, and much better than the lab results from shooting test charts imply.